Skip to comments.Downplaying the Holocaust would be another tragedy
Posted on 04/25/2006 12:08:27 PM PDT by knighthawk
The Final Solution: Auschwitz, Treblinka, Bergen-Belsen, Dachau, Buchenwald, Terezin, Chelmno, Sobibor, Majdanek, Belzec, Polish ghettos.
Adolf Hitler's Nazis murdered 6 million Jews -- 6 million girls, men, grandmothers, babies, uncles, neighbors, women, fathers, friends, sisters, colleagues, cousins, lovers, boys, mothers, aunts -- 6 million human beings. Though Hitler's main target was Jews, he also exterminated 5 million other people, mostly Catholics, homosexuals, gypsies and the handicapped, to support his master race ambition.
For perspective, and to humanize each of the 6 million victims, consider this: If you read each victim's name -- taking just two seconds per name -- it would take you 139 days to complete the task. Start and you will not finish until September. But that is only if you never stop to eat, drink or sleep, much like the conditions the victims endured.
Most perished (were murdered) quickly in the gas chambers, gallows or execution lines. The rest were forced to perform labor so excruciating the likes of which adjectives do no justice in describing. Then there were the rapes, beatings, heinous medical "experiments" and brutal, arbitrary tortures.
None of this happened by accident. Quite the contrary, it was planned, it was designed. It took the active participation of an entire country to accomplish, not the workings of a few evil leaders. It happened in the "modern era" in the most civilized of countries, and it happened for only one reason: because they were Jews. Somehow, a few survived.
Note, the above description is hollow, it is weak, it is inadequate. It is all I can offer in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day, which is today.
Amazingly, there is a group of individuals who deny the Holocaust ever occurred. They are called "Holocaust revisionists." If they are "Holocaust revisionists," I suppose someone who claims two plus two is five is a "mathematical revisionist." We call the person ignorant, stupid or some other less than flattering word, but not a "revisionist."
Calling Holocaust deniers "revisionists" wrongly suggests there is room for debate. It lends credence to asinine assertions. We are talking historical fact, not policy debates or competing historical theories.
Ideally, the "revisionists" would not warrant any attention. As my grandmother Baba Bella used to say, "If you argue with a fool, that makes two."
Unfortunately, some of the "revisionists" possess an air of credibility. Take Northwestern engineering professor Arthur Butz, who penned a book in 1976 denying the Holocaust. Butz recently garnered much attention when he was paired with the good company of the president of Iran questioning the Holocaust.
In a world that is often ill-informed, ignorance can pass as fact if left unchallenged. If supposedly credible individuals like Butz are not condemned, then the perpetual lie soon becomes "truth." Our silence is the source of their strength.
Insulated by tenure policies, Butz peddles hate using his university-sponsored Web site. Northwestern can ban hateful speakers as it did a few years ago when it prevented hate-monger Matthew Hale's attempt to speak on campus. Butz has a right to his soap box, but the university need not provide it for him.
Consider -- for shock value -- what the reaction would be if a group of "antebellum revisionists" claimed African Americans were never slaves? That blacks were never sold, lynched, beaten, raped and bartered? Suppose these "scholars" claimed the whole idea of a black slave trade was simply a hoax devised by blacks to garner sympathy. How would we respond?
I would like to think that I would be joined by everyone, no matter their ethnicity, in obliterating such a lie. I would like to think that the "revisionists" would be called racists.
Most important, the lessons of the Holocaust are hardly static. Today -- not 1944 -- synagogues are vandalized in Europe. The Arab press publishes articles stating that Jews use the blood of Muslim children in Passover festivals. Arab children use text books demonizing Jews. Foreign "news" organizations "report" America and Israel orchestrated the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Likewise, the lessons of the Holocaust are not limited to Jews. Long before Darfur, upward of 2 million Christians were butchered in the Sudan under the command, "convert or die." Trains carrying Hindus are set afire in India. Jehovah's witnesses are beheaded in the Philippines. A million Tutsis were murdered in Rwanda in 100 days in 1994. Coptic Christians are persecuted to near extinction in Egypt. Muslims were persecuted in Bosnia a decade ago. Saddam Hussein gassed Kurds. And so it goes. Millions killed not for anything they did, but because of who they were.
I relish the day when "Holocaust revisionists" like Butz can be dismissed and scorned, not given a university paycheck. Until then remember, two plus two is four. Do not forget it lest the victims of the Holocaust died in vain.
William Choslovsky is a Chicago lawyer.
Thank you for your post. It is imperative that we never, ever forget what happened 60+ years ago... I wrote about my experience visiting Auschwitz last year at http://www.cdod.blogspot.com. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly we humans tend to dismiss the horrors we have witnessed. I will soon write about my experience meeting the "last Jew of Gora Kalwaria", a holy town near Warsaw, that lost all of its Jews to Treblinka...and there's only one left who has taken it upon himself to mind the lonely and once-desecrated Jewish cemetery.
"Coptic Christians are persecuted to near extinction in Egypt."
This lawyer and the Jews who won't forget could still do something about the Coptic Chrisians who are being killed and harmed as we speak. I wonder whether the author will spearhead doing anything about it or whether those who ask why the Jewish holocaust wasn't stopped by the US will do anything about this one. I doubt it. Talk is cheap.
Why won't Christians do something about the Copts? Why is it the responsibility of the Jews?
Warning! This is a high-volume ping list.
And this is where the rubber meets the road.
Everything you need to know about what makes the Israelis tick, can be condensed to two words:
I gained a deep respect for the Israeli people, by having the opportunity to visit thier country, and travel through it several times while in the Navy. I've seen for myself just what the Israeli people crafted for themselves out of nothing, and I think I have an appreciation for why the Israelis will do whatever it takes to ensure thier own survival. Underestimating them in that regard is a serious error, that Iran is going to discover very soon.
Indeed, for what they accomplised surrounded by people out to destroy them in 50-60 years is amazing.
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