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February 12, 2015 11:52 am

Lessons From the Holocaust Should Inform Netanyahu Speech Debate

avatar by Gabriel Eichler

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is reportedly considering a change of plans in regards to his scheduled address in front of Congress next month. Photo: Cherie Cullen.

Once again it seems that Jews never learn!

German-born Jewish refugee and political theorist Hannah Arendt remains one of the most controversial public figures of her generation.

For many good reasons.

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In her reporting of the 1961 Adolf Eichmann trial for The New Yorker, (which evolved into the book “Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil“) – she coined the phrase “the banality of evil” to describe the phenomenon of the arch Nazi mass murderer Eichmann.

She raised the question of whether evil is radical or simply a function of thoughtlessness, a tendency of ordinary people to obey orders and conform to mass opinion without a critical evaluation of the consequences of their actions and inaction.

She was also sharply critical of the way that some Jewish leaders of the era conducted themselves during the Holocaust.

This caused a considerable controversy and life-long open animosity toward Arendt in the Jewish community.

But Arendt did raise a critically important issue: Jewish apathy, acquiesce, and outright collaboration that immeasurably assisted Hitler’s Nazi regime in carrying out its “Final Solution.”

Let’s look at historical facts first: on August 28, 1942, American Reform Rabbi Stephen Wise received an alarming cable from London.

It read in part: “IN FUHRER’S HEADQUARTERS PLAN DISCUSSED AND UNDER CONSIDERATION THAT ALL JEWS IN COUNTRIES OCCUPIED OR CONTROLLED [BY] GERMANY…SHOULD AFTER DEPORTATION AND CONCENTRATION IN EAST AT ONE BLOW BE EXTERMINATED.”

The message had originally been sent by Gerhart Riegner, the World Jewish Congress representative in Switzerland.

Rabbi Wise was the most well-known leader of the American Jewish community during the years of World War II, and he also officiated as president of both the American Jewish Congress and the World Jewish Congress.

His shameful failure of “leadership” ended up to be a criminally disgraceful disaster when it came to making any rescue efforts on behalf of Europe’s Jews – including my entire murdered family – during the Holocaust.

On October 6, 1943, a delegation of American Orthodox rabbis arrived in Washington hoping for a personal audience with President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. They planned to present to the President irrefutable proof that the Nazis were conducting a wholesale annihilation of unimaginable scale of European Jews.

The rabbis understood that this was a decisive moment – the very last chance to stop the Holocaust before the last of European Jewry was extinguished.

Wise who – like a good political lackey – called President Franklin Delano Roosevelt ‘Boss‘ and ‘Chief,’ advised the President not to meet with the 400 pleading Orthodox rabbis who marched on Washington.

So accordingly, the President did not make himself available to hear the pleas.

Ironically, Roosevelt’s State Department did inform the President through other channels of the industrial, wholesale massacre of the Jews taking place across the European continent, but Roosevelt did not feel sufficiently pressured by the American Jewish leadership – so he just satisfied himself with a tepid general statement: “This government has moved and continues to move, so far as the burden of the war permits, to help the victims of the Nazi doctrines of racial, religious and political oppression.”

Why are there still houses of worship and awards named after the detestable Reform rabbi and “Jewish leader” who so utterly and unforgivably betrayed and abandoned his people?

Which brings me to a recent public statement I read in a New York Jewish newspaper – a statement, that was attributed to the current leader of Reform Jewry in the US.

In the Jewish Daily Forward, a certain American Reform leader reportedly pronounced that it would be “ill-advised” for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak before Congress, because it would take place two weeks before Israeli elections and also because the appearance had been organized without the knowledge of the White House.

On one hand, it could be seen as just one of many opinions expressed on Netanyahu’s stated intention of giving a dire warning to Congress regarding the dangers of a nuclear Iran. But since this is eerily similar to another Reform leader – Stephen Wise’s horrific mishandling of a truly existential threat to the Jewish people – the stunning coincidence simply cannot be ignored.

If Netanyahu wants to tell the American people directly that there is a clear and present danger that threatens the State of Israel (as well as the world community), let him have his say!

Just like Hitler, Iran’s leaders have made statements calling for the destruction of millions of Jews.

Prime Minister Netanyahu cannot be expected to sit back and leave the future of his people in the hands of a murderous, radical – and soon to be nuclear-capable – Islamic Republic, nor to the whims of naïve dilettantes in Washington who are looking for a “legacy” or to curry favor with the Administration.

Am Yisroel Chai!

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  • I realize that seasons come and go, they have beginning and the end. I stay positive, hoping for better tomorrow knowing that fear, worry and despair will not help me on the contrary it will only depress me. As every season approach, I endure hardship, trusting God that He will help me to go thru, that He will guide me and He will be my strength . Hardships in this life can easily destroy us and ruin our life if we allow it or can teach us, make us stronger and better person with character. RABBI DR. BERNHARD ROSENBERG PLEASE SHARE Subject: Perseverance: A Holocaust Philosophy – YouTube Perseverance: A Holocaust Philosophy – YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cyx2C_93oo 13 hours ago … Dr. Rosenberg discusses perseverance with his Jewish and Non-Jewish students. Please share and subscribe!

    Perseverance: A Holocaust Philosophy

    Dr. Rosenberg discusses perseverance with his Jewish and Non-Jewish students. Please share and subscribe!

    youtube.com

  • victoria brandeis

    THANK YOU BUT I DO BELIEVE THAT ‘BIBI’ CAN WRITE HIS OWN SPEACH.

    LAST TIME I LOOK WE WERE ALL JUST MAKING BEDS AND WATCHING OUR CHILDREN.

    USE YOUR WORDS……..SHOUT…..BUT , BIBI KNOWS WHAT TO DO

    AND YOU KNOW WHAT TO DO ALSO…..’VOTE’

  • Louis Hayden

    In time the March 17th Israeli elections and Mr. Netanyahu’s speech to congress will be seen as historically equal to the Mosaic Sinai covenant.

    In final analysis, Mr. Netanyahu will tell the nations to back up Israel to save western society and jointly fight Islam to prevent worldwide holocaust – the nations will utter empty words and toss Israel as a bone to pacify Islam and deny Islam is on a holy crusade to control entire earth with their Purist literal interpretation of their Koran as only guideline to dominate all mankind..

    Just as the first Israelites agreed to the conditional covenant when they said, “All that the Lord has spoken we will do!” – So must the modern Jews in coming election also decide whether they too will or will not do the “WILL OF GOD.” It was Conditional in that if Israel was obedient, then God would bless them, but if they disobeyed, then God would punish them and indeed they were punished severely for disobedience.

    Today with all the heavenly signs from God and world economic and financial systems collapsing, social-moral disintegration; Israel surrounded by hundreds of millions of demonically possessed radial Muslims, and all the nations turning against her, Jews MUST place their faith in God or face even more severe punishment today. Only THIS generation can look back 6000 years in History to know the mistakes Jews and gentiles have made and not repeat them again. The severity of the Seven Years of the Tribulation, also known as the Time of Jacob’s Trouble will depend whether voters stand up for doing God’s will – to have the courage and stand up to be the Light unto the nations. Most of Biblical prophecy has been fulfilled or all lined up to be fulfilled at any moment. The end is in sight – the prophetic portrait is vividly clear with ISIS burning of captives and countless beheadings – the precursor to millions of beheaded Christians and Jews as clearly stated in Book of Revelations. (plus hundreds of millions of Muslims considered infidels or heretics).

    Israeli voters must decide whether to BE OBEDIENT to God’s laws and believe God gave the disputed Holy Lands to Abraham and his descendants for all eternity; and if they believe it, they are willing to stand up against ALL THE NATIONS BY DEFENDING EVERY SQUARE INCH AND TRUSTING IN GOD TO BE BY THEIR SIDE – GIVING THEM ULTIMATE VICTORY BY DESTROYING THEIR ENEMIES. The time has come to cancel all previous promises of giving up land and – cancel all talks until Iran and Saudi Arabia agree to and actually remove all offensive paragraphs from the Koran telling Muslims to kill Jews and Christians. Time to cancel all previous agreements until Hamas and PLO turn in their guns and heavy weaponry and destroy all school books teaching hatred and destruction of Israel and Jews…..

    If that sounds outlandish, it is far more sensible than the preposterous Islamic world wide belief that the Jews never had a first or second temple or any right to even live anywhere on planet earth. The recent events of European anti-Semitism and Obama’s administration of open hatred toward Israel should settle once and for all which way Israeli voters should vote. Obama sending a special team to destroy and throw out Mr. Netanyahu so as to elect people willing to give away Holy Land should be a clear signal to voters which way to vote. Obama is an Islamic Purist and almost chokes on his words when He parses them so as not to condemn Islamic ISIS and worldwide terrorist attacks by Muslims.

    Israeli voters must decide whether they will give up Holy land to terrorists committed to killing all Jews – willing to give up their inherited God given land for a false peace just as Esau gave up his birthright for a plate of beans.

    Israeli voters must decide if God is going to punish them more severely for not learning from History – such as the first Israelites that at first sign of trouble and hardship wanted to go back to Egypt and later like the multitude that believed the spies reports of “The Land of Milk and Honey” being unconquerable,

    Leaders running for office must decide if they will circumcise their eyes and see what the ancient prophets wrote concerning today and join forces for the common good of the nation and its people or let false pride and arrogance dominate as it did when Korah and his people challenged Moses. Elected leaders (that desire to give up Holy Land for false peace that Palestinian Muslims have no intention of keeping) must ask themselves what part of the Muslim promise to kill every Jew is that they do not understand ???

    When Israelis go to vote on March 17th they should remember we are in the Midst of the Tetrad blood moons and a solar eclipse right after election; remember the prophecy of rabbi Kaduri and reread Psalm 83. Every Jew should research on internet and consider the prophecies against America as seen by visionary Dumitru Duduman. One can no longer count on America.

    In final analysis, each Israeli voter should ask himself as he or she enters the voting booth: “how does God want me to vote?” –

  • victoria brandeis

    A SUBJECT NOT TO BE TOUCHED……IF YOU WEREN’T THERE THEN DON’T JUDGE…..PERIOD.

    THIS AMERICAN WOMAN IS NOT ONE IOTA DIFFERENT THAN ONE TODAY….BIG MOUTH OR NOT.

    THE PRIME MINISTER IS DOING QUITE FINE WITHOUT AMERICAN CONTROVERSY ….. MOSTLY EACH NAIL ON THE PAGES OF WORDS ONLY LETS ME KNOW THAT BEING A CDN. IS FAR RICHER THAN I WOULD BELIEVE.

    GO FOR IT…..MR. PRIME MINISTER……LET THE IDIOT WHO BOTHER YOU AND SARAH EAT DIRT FOR DINNER….ITS EASIER TO DIGEST

  • Julian Clovelley

    5 days have gone by since this article was published and still not one single practical suggestion

    Plenty of abuse of the American Administration and attack on Obama – and still not one practical suggestion

    The delusions seems to be that no-one other than the Jewish community understands that the situation is volatile and dangerous – and we need Bibi to explain it to us

    We already know. Obama knows. The Administration knows. We all know

    Your solution? and bear in mind there already is an islamic nation with nuclear weapons.

    • victoria brandeis

      IF YOU CAN’T THINK THEN NO EXPLANATION IS GOING TO BE VALID

      AND IF YOU CAN’T THINK…….DON’T SPEAK

  • DACON9

    attention all you guys submiting comments.

    Your sentences are to long.
    Your not making paragraphs.
    It is difficult To read without ‘AIR SPACE’ IN YOUR LENGTHLY COMMENTS.
    You are not using caps where at times you SHOULD use it
    especially when your sentences are runnnig at million words a line.

    IF YOU WANNA BE READ THEN MAKE IT ‘EYE’APPEALING!

  • Rabbi Dr. Bernhard Rosenberg SAYS President Obama … – YouTube

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ig8c795KymA

    2 min – Dec 2, 2013 – Uploaded by Bernhard Rosenberg

    See More

  • Freedom of Speech Limitations
    If you are in a theater and you yell fire, when there is no fire and cause injuries to the audience at large by your yelling fire you have forfeited you right to free speech.
    The same applies to anyone who promotes violence, incites the public to violence and sedition, Uses his freedom of speech to promote treason against the State.
    Israel has bent over backward in protecting the right to free speech.
    It is time for Israel to go on the offensive and utilize its laws to prosecute those who abuse their right to free speech, that right has its limitations.
    We must hold Arab-Palestinians accountable for teaching hate, honoring terrorist and celebrating terror attacks.
    Any capitulation or concessions to Arab-Palestinians demands breeds greater outrageous demands and more violence.
    YJ Draiman

  • Martin H. Leaf

    The article forget to mention the most important thing: Wise went after the Jews that were warning about the Holocaust. And Wise and the rest of the organized Jewish leadership, including the ADL, went after them with a vengeance.

    Read Perfidy, and Child of the Century. Nothing has changed.

  • Jim42

    I forgot in my former paper to remind you to read the “Bielski Brothers” where one can see how Jews prefered to remain in the Ghetto of Novogrodok, ‘”very relativelly comfortable, if not Secure! instead of chosing the Forest…. with a living in “animals lairs conditions in Minus 25° Celsius and hells heat in Summer… but fighting free…instead of being randomly shot a morning by some alcoholic imbecile SS.

  • Jim42

    Then,came a Pharao who hadn’t known Josef”
    How a Pharaos Dynasty Great Member couldn’t have learnt about his own People and Family History???? So, it just means that people don’t learn forget deny don’t want to remember and fac
    e the Reality.
    So the Hebrews-Jews with AMALEC……
    As the Prophets told: Jews are idiots building the Gold Veal after Sinaï…poorand Feable spirits…
    That Jews behaved often without courage dignity and imaigination is an evidence: THEY were the First to be informed and aware of What was the Nazi system and most of them stayed even in Paris in their luxury appartments until June 44..!!!(See Helene Behr’s diary—-) having no strength for vanishing in clandestinity they had the money for! (Poor Jews were of course with families kids Grand parents, WITHOUT LMONEY AND RESSOURCES? totally in the hands of the Nazis and french Gestapo/Police: the FIRST to be caught and sent to Auschwitz and o.camps.since February 42 until few days before freeing of Paris and Lyon!: The last departures in August 17th from Paris and from Lyon on August 11th fourteen days before freeing of Lyon on August 24th.
    Mentally and Technically Selber Schuld !

  • Iran is the most destabilizing entity in the Middle East.
    If they are not stopped now the escalation will grow, as it has grown in the past 20 years. Iran’s sphere of influence is already in Lebanon, Yemen, Gaza. Libya, etc,

    Do you have any doubts, if Iran had the capability that it would destroy Israel, they state that every chance they get and they mean it.

    Obama is the most delusion minded president in the history of the U.S.
    I am surprised for such smart people you cannot see Obama’s hidden agenda.
    The Jewish people will not let 6 million Jews to be exterminated again.

    United we Stand – Divided we fall!

    I think you do not have all the facts. U.S. needs Israel as much as Israel needs the U.S. The relations and history between the U.S. Israel and the Jewish people goes back when England first sent people via the Mayflower to inhabit America.
    The Jewish people were very involved in the War of Independence of the U.S.A.
    The government of the U.S.A. was very supportive after WWI in reconstituting the Jewish people in there ancestral land.
    It is a relation that has its ups and downs, depends on the American administration at the time and the political international conditions.
    As long as communist Russia was involved in the Middle East, Israel was an arm of the U.S. in helping the U.S. to control Russian interests in the Middle East.
    Today Israel more than any other country knows the true mission of the extremists Muslims and the terror they bring all over the world.
    I could go on and on, but I think you get the point.

    “We have flown the air like birds and swum the sea like fishes, but have yet to learn the simple act of walking the earth like brothers”

    I am not in the Israeli government. But I think, Israel should have taken action against Iran years ago.
    The longer they wait the harder it gets,
    Menachem Begin as PM made the decision to bomb the nuclear dev. in Iraq. It was the right decision under tough circumstances.
    The world most times will not agree with Israel’s defensive actions. It seems as time passes they realize that Israel saved their butts.
    As history shows. The Jews and Israel have always been criticized, no matter what.
    You might as well do the right thing and defend Israel and its people. Dam the world opinion.
    The world did nothing when 6 million Jews were exterminated during WW2 and they did nothing when the Arab countries expelled a million Jewish people and confiscated all their assets.
    There is a famous Jewish saying “If I am not for myself who is for me”.
    YJ Draiman

    I am confused who are the real Palestinians
    ISRAEL LEADERS
    Benjamin Netanyahu
    Born October 21-1949 Tel-Aviv
    EHUD BARAK
    Born February 12-1942 Mishmar-Hasharon
    ARIEL SHARON
    Born February 26-1928 Kfar-Malal
    EHUD OLMERT
    Born September 30-1945 Binyamin-Giv
    ITZHAK RABIN
    Born March 1-1922 Jerusalem
    ITZHAK NAVON President
    Born April 9-1921 Jerusalem
    EZER WEIZMAN President
    Born June 15-1924 Tel Aviv
    ARAB PALESTINIAN LEADERS
    Yasser Arafat
    Born August 24-1929 Cairo Egypt
    Saeb Erekat
    Born April 28-1955 Jordan
    Faisal Abdel Qader Al-Husseini
    Born 1948 Baghdad Iraq
    Sari Nusseibeh
    Born 1949 Damascus Syria
    Mahmoud Al-Zahar
    Born Cairo Egypt 1945
    So you got ask who are settler or more accurate occupiers the Israelis that we’re born in Israel or the ARAB Leaders that were born in Arab states which are Syria, Jordan, Iraq, and Egypt

  • Hannah Arendt embodied the worst of the German Jewish emigres, including her affinity group the Frankfurt Institut group, whose analysis of the horrid effects of mass media she shared in her famous formulation of “mob society.” But in rereading The Origins of Totalitarianism, I found a statement that was more indicative of her politics than anything I had seen before. I summarized it here: http://clarespark.com/2015/01/18/is-antisemitism-rational-or-irrational/. She alleged that the grossness of the Rothschilds had rubbed off on European Jews, presumably all of them.

  • Wm. J. Levy

    Jews have no strong leaders outside of Israel and even those have their own problems with all the fractions fighting among themselves.

    All these Jewish organizations in America and not one strong leader who will force the Swiss to return Nazi looted Jewish owner artworks.

    Stop going tin cup in hand and demand with force the return.

    Jews get attacked on E. 63rd St. NYC by Arabs waving Palestinian flags and nothing happens.

    Jews say Never Again!!! I say, Why Not!!!

  • I’m not American but I think it’s very important for Netanyahu to speak. I hope it’s televised by one of the international networks but I suppose it won’t be because they’re all anti israel

  • Robert Davis

    Excellent article and the analysis is good! But it does not explain tha Wise rat’s action. Why did he go against his people’s interest in such terrible circunstances? Was he afraid to lose himself a little “influence” over the Community if other rabbis entered the game and gor some influence? I suppose it is for this personnal interest that this Wise rat sabotaged rabbis’ work! This is apparently what happens with that other rat herzog and others livni etc. Those people would sell anyone for a little influence for their own benefit,this is why I call them rats.

  • Pierre Elie Mamou

    Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad could speak in New York, he was permited to say in Columbia University: “Women in Iran enjoy the highest levels of freedom,” (raped women are slaughtered) or “In Iran, we don’t have homosexuals, like in your country.” (Of course, he hang them). I understand that a president of a country who allows this man who wants to exterminate jews, does not want Israel PM to speak about anyrhing, like Usa-Iran friendship. Do all democrats support this politic?

  • Edward

    Thank you for this dead-on analysis. I am one of many that cannot fathom why every single thinking person is not alarmed by the actions of the Obama administration. Apparently polishing their liberal credentials is more important than their own survival.

  • Mickey Oberman

    “Once again it seems that Jews never learn!”

    That 70/71 percent of American Jews who voted for Obama Is a prime example as are the fact that many of them still subscribe to the anti-Semitic New York Times.

  • Alizah Hochstead

    When will we ever learn. If nothing else we should have learned to support our fellow Jews and that the one who doesn’t is next. It seems like AMerican Jews are so concerned about being “American” that they forget they are Jews.

  • NCS

    Jews who resist Bibi’s coming to make this speech oppose themselves.

  • Jacqueline

    Welcome Bibi and I hope the congress listens Americans are sleeping.

  • Julian Clovelley

    I have yet to see, in any of the criticisms of the American Administration, a single viable alternative to the manner in which negotiations with Iran are being carried out. I hear plenty of quite idiotic sabre rattlings, but no practical suggestions. It Iran does not want to act in accordance with American or Israeli desires then it won’t

    Under the fear of military threat – and on the basis of the letters from Einstein and other scientists, Roosevelt authorised the construction of the atomic bomb. Under military threat Israel built its own nuclear arsenal. The lesson of history is that the one thing that impels nations to seek nuclear weapons is military threat. Iran may well be following a pattern created by others, Britain, France, North Korea, India, Pakistan and the Soviet Union and China – and of course the aforementioned USA and Israel. Military threat and blockade encouraged Cuba to seek Soviet nuclear weapons stationed in Cuba,

    So perhaps it is reasonable to suggest that sabre rattling is counter productive. To properly negotiate with Iran requires a moving of the goalposts. But the present positioning of these is inspired and protected by extremists in the Zionist camp, who maintain the myth that the Jewish Settlements in the West Bank are where they are by Divine right – that the Occupation should not end – even after nearly fifty years

    Moving forward requires changes in attitude and ethos on all sides. Fundamentalist Judaism inspires Fundamentalism in Islam as fire is uses to confront fire.

    I really don’t care whether Netanyahu speaks anywhere or not. What matters to me is that the message is always one of an inflammatory intransigence clearly urged on by Fundamentalist and Zionist backwardness. His speech will likely make the situation worse and reconciliation and negotiation less attainable

    And none of that will actually be Iran’s fault.

  • steven L

    One more time thanks to the liberal and lefty Jews history may repeat itself.

  • Mayven

    Netanyahu is qualified to speak to an AMERICAN body of government in no uncertain terms. The clouds of peril are hovering…yet the naive but sit on the fence.
    Time to stop hiding under a rock…World .

  • Joel Keller

    One part of this article is not true. Speaker Boehner did, in fact, duly inform the White House of the invitation to Prime Minister Netanyahu to speak before a joint session of Congress. Unfortunately, the Obama administration has taken to spinning the facts to whatever end it’s trying to make.

  • Dr. Stephen Steinlight

    You make many excellent points but paint with too broad a brush. The examples you choose yield a more precise conclusion. The problem is not so much with ordinary Jews, and certainly not with Jews who are politically conservative. The problem in the years leading up to the Holocaust and now, when it appears we are in some respects back in the 30’s — is the influence and loud public voice of the leftwing plutocratic oligarchy that is the Jewish Establishment. They worshipped FDR (and those much farther to the left Stalin). They constantly counselled quiescence and weakness. They assured Jews that they were the “insiders” who would protect us. But the fact is that the Jewish Establishment has in many respects become indistinguishable from the left side of the American political and fiscal elite and take their cues from them. They live in terror of seeming “too Jewish” or “strident” in defense of Israel and Jewish interests generally. And this at a time when millions of our fellow Americans — especially white Christians, and particularly Evangelical Christians — stand with us. But of course being part of the politically-correct political elite they spurn these loyal and loving Christians and look for love in all the wrong places. Our own Establishment also joins with Obama in his radical critique of America and disdains the notion of American Exceptionalism. Yet nothing provides greater evidence of just how exceptional America is then the fact that it has the lowest anti-Semitism of all first world countries (by the bye, Laos actually has the lowest anti-Semitism). In the US anti-Semitism, according to Pew, is an issue among no more than 9% of the population. Compare that to any European country, east or west. And unlike in the 1930’s we have a Jewish state with the best air force in the world and with a powerful arsenal of nuclear weapons. The fact is we can simply ignore the embarrassing convenient idiots — whether we’re speaking of Abe Foxman (whose Anti-Defamation League has defamed many whose only crime was disagreeing with him about immigration policy) or the new feckless idiot who took over from Eric Yoffie.
    I am asked endlessly by my non-Jewish friends why Jews seem to love Obama and vote Democratic despite the fact that the Democrats have a growing hostility to Israel as the Party’s base becomes increasingly non-white. The answer is that when it comes to politics Jews are irrational and just plain stupid. They lack the normal ego strength required to assert one’s own rational self-interest without shame. They live with a slave morality and feel they must receive permission, especially from those that loathe them, simply to live. There is huge work to be done to turn leftist Jews into normal human beings. I often despair of the challenge. But in the past several decades there are signs of positive movement. It will take another 20-30 years before the dyed-in-the-wool secularist self-doubting and sometimes self-loathing Jews die out. But I already see in many young Jews signs of health, including greater identification with their religious roots. They are beginning to see that liberalism is not a religion and hunger for authentic spirituality. These things are part of a coming redemption.

  • Otto Schiff

    A very appropriate article.
    I am alive today, a former German Jew,because my father
    could see the coming problem.

  • Bernie Kessler

    Iran has threatened to defer negotiations if Congress passes the bill on sanctions. That would appear to be serious intrusion into our political affairs. Netanyahu
    is taking advantage of a world-leading forum to speak against any deal to be made by the Ameri-Euro alliance now negotiating with Iran. Remember Hillel—- if he is not for Israel, who should be??? And, inadvertently but nonetheless real, as he speaks for Israel isn’t he indeed speaking for others in the region? And if he doesn’t speak now, when should he speak???

  • Rabbi Victor Gross Ph.D

    I was shocked to read such a distortion of history.As a trained historian I submit that the historical record does not support such an attack on Rabbi Steven S. Wise. In fact the leadership met with President Rosevelt and State Dept. officials many times to bring the facts of the unfolding of the holocaust to their attention. While much of the American Jewish community was silent in their lack of understanding of what was unfolding one can’t castigate certain leaders who made significant efforts to convince the administration in D.C. to do more. The fault lies with those in the halls of power at that time. Historical distortion and vitriolic condemnation of those who do not deserve such judgment only weakens the author of this diatribe.
    I’m prepared to hear the response: “My mind is made up; don’t confuse me with the facts.”

    • I agree, Rabbi Gross. The Roosevelt administration showed little interest in the plight of Europe’s Jews, despite available evidence. The State Department tried to suppress information telegrams and cables that Wise and others sent about the Holocaust. State made it clear that Jewish refugees were unwelcome, at least until a few men in the Treasury Department discovered State’s attempts to stop the cables. In 1944 FDR finally created the War Refugee Board, but its members had a difficult time trying to rescue Jews so late in the war.

      • All of that is quite true. The Abandonment of The Jews of Europe will stand as a accusation we will never forget and should not be allowed to repeat again?

    • As an Author on The Holocaust it is always important from my stand point to place the Jews of Europe at the head of any consideration I might make about History. For those who wish to see the Truth it is there. For those who seek to blame others they need only know that 6,000,000 Jews will not place the blame. My point is clear. If ever there was a need to ensure Jewish lives were saved, Rabbi Wise, Kasztner and others made strenuous efforts to do so. Those who would deal with the devil should have been allowed to do so in order to save the Jews from extinction!

  • Veronica R. Kaufman

    I am probably one of the last of the Holocaust survivors… we were German Jews who survived internship by the French and were able to get into the US in 1941. Our administration’s posture toward Iran is reminiscent of Neville Chamberlain. His pettiness about the invitation to Netanhyahu to address Congress is unspeakable. Actually, the Administration was notified prior to Boehner’s invitation to Bibi; notified but not conferred with, hence the petulance. A Statesman would have used the situation to point out that what is great about the US is the Freedom of Speech and freedom to express contrary opinions…that so many have died protecting.

  • When Heidegger said jump( or kneel) Hannah Arendt said How high? Or How low?

  • Dov

    Reform Rabbis were always against any thing that sounded Jewish. Only now with empty Tempe buildings, they are trying to reenter mainstream and become recognized in the State of Israel, the very same State they were against having it established.

  • This speech is counter productive. If the end result is to have the U.S. Congress stop any deal with Iran by coming up with new sanctions, it will need to gain 67 Senate Votes (or 2/3 of the Senators attending). Same thing in the House – 2/3 in each chamber is needed to override a veto. Let us look at the U.S. Senate. Assuming that every Republican will vote against President Obama on sanctions (which is not a given), this means that 11 of the 46 Democrats will need to vote against their President. This actually looked achievable before — Robert Menendez of New Jersey was on-board, and 10 other Democrats who are very hawkish on Israel could have been found. However, this effort has been scuttled due to the heavy-handedness involved with what is seen as a major snub to the Democratic party by Mr. Netanyahu and his ambassador. The way in which Mr. Netanyahu’s speech was set up has made Democrats livid, including many of the 70% of American Jews who regularly vote Democratic in elections. This is a disaster for Israel and it will have repercussions — and could have eaisly been avoided.

    • M. Ross

      What you suggest is that the “swing” congressional democrat vote will defy rational thought. If the democratic votes necessary to continue sanctions are withheld for political patronage, those actors will certainly pay the price at election time as will the world sometime thereafter. We have legions of laws preventing violent and even potentially violent individuals from owning and/or obtaining guns — yet this administration would provide a death-worshiping self-avowed terrorist nation with nuclear weapons capability. Shear insanity.

  • The world has learned nothing from the holocaust. For a while there was quiet after the holocaust but then all was forgotten My father was in Auschwitz and my mother in Skarsichko and I was born in a D.P. camp. My fathers first wife and children were murdered by the Nazis. The new Nazis , extremist Muslims, have raised their ugly heads and we need to annihilate them. World War 111 has begun. We must fight for the survival of Israel. Iran is our enemy. Isis is a cancer which must be eradicated. Rabbi Dr. Bernhard Rosenberg

  • This article speaks truth.
    As a Holocaust survivor, I believe if we do not understand historical events, a trap for injustice is set. This must be remembered in every generation now and always.

    • theo

      I have no doubt the holocaust will be the central theme of Netanyahu’s address And well it should be
      The Jewish People have vowed “never again !” This is an emphatic expression Iran which denies the holocaust and swears it will cause the “real holocaust ” cannot be allowed to go nuclear which is exactly what Obama is enabling Iran to do
      Netanyahu cannot be expected to acquiesce in Israel’s destruction That is what compels him to speak to the joint Houses

    • Robert Davis

      Andina : your words are too vague,you should be more specific! Are you unable to speak CLEARLY or are you afraaaid?

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