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San Francisco Art Gallery Censors Writing and Art Work as Too Zionist

Posted by chutzpaleh on October 16, 2007

alan kaufman paitingHimmelberger Gallery, a well-known art gallery located in San Francisco’s tony Union Square, has decided to cancel plans to publish an art catalogue of one of its represented artists, noted author Alan Kaufman (pictured here), who is under contract to the gallery. The decision is due to use of the word Zionism in the catalogue’s title ‘Visionary Expressionism: A Zionist Art.” Kaufman said in response:

For myself, I want to say that to see oneself and ones colleagues censored for expression of a Zionist perspective is one of the most shocking experiences I’ve ever had as an artist, or writer. But what made it especially hard was to see my fellow writers, David Twersky, David Rosenberg, Etgar Keret, Polly Zavadivker, also censored. It was then that I understood that this was not merely censorship of me: this was censorship of an entire community, of my people, the Jewish People; of my colleagues, my fellow writers and artists. This drove home to me like nothing else that I must never accept such censorship from anyone, under any circumstances. I must stand up proudly as a Zionist and express myself freely, without shame or reservation.

The gallery objects to the expressly Zionist focus of several essay contributions to the catalogue by well-known authors and journalists, including David Twersky, contributing editor of the New York Sun and senior adviser, International Affairs for American Jewish Congress; noted scholar David Rosenberg, author (with Harold Bloom) of The Book of J and most recently of Abraham: The First Historical Biography; Etgar Keret, widely acknowledged as Israel’s most popular young writer, and whose books include The Nimrod Flip-Out and The Bus Driver Who Wanted To Be G-d ; and Polly Zavadivker, a young scholar completing graduate studies in Hebrew and Judaics at New York University and currently working as a grants officer at the Jewish Federation in Oakland, California. Kaufman, whose critically acclaimed books include the memoir Jew Boy and the novel Matches has an essay and an interview, conducted by Zavadivker, in the catalogue.

The catalogue was to present 15 of Kaufman’s paintings which are under contract to the gallery and whose subjects range from the Holocaust to Israel to the New Antisemitism. The gallery’s prices for the works in question have been cited at between $3,275 and $36,000. The works have hung in the gallery and a cross-section of them also appeared on the gallery website .

At a meeting between gallery head David Himmelberger and Kaufman, Himmelberger surprised the artist and author with an eleventh hour decision not to proceed with the catalogue due to the Zionist “agenda” of the essays as well as some of the paintings. Himmelberger said that such a presentation was antithetical to the aims of the gallery, which promotes “international understanding” and forswears all forms of nationalism and religion. But the authors see this as a transparent example of the way in which the word Zionism has been exiled from civil discourse and has been turned by the cultural establishment into a refugee of a word, a pariah of an idea, and a euphemism for Antisemitism.

Polly Zavadivker, one of the authors to be published in the catalog, told Oy Bay,

“My personal feeling is that David Himmelberger’s refusal to publish the catalog due to the use of the word Zionism is an action that confirms the prevalence of anti-Israel and by extension, anti-Jewish sentiment in our modern, supposedly enlightened and progressive West Coast culture. The Bay Area, despite being home to the ethnic pride movements of the 1960s and 70s, is today a place where the struggle for Jewish sovereignty is marginalized and framed as a form of racist oppression, while those of Latinos, Native Americans, Chicanos, Asians and African-Americans are celebrated. As someone who studies Jewish history, and as someone who writes, I feel the imperative to add my voice to the growing movement to reclaim the word Zionism from its enemies and to rehabilitate its use in the general lexicon. This movement is happening right now! “

The Zionist 5, as the group refers to itself, released the following statement:


Zionism is the Civil Rights Movement of the Jewish People. It is the answered prayer to two thousand years of ceaseless persecution at the hands of unpredictable host nations and of religions that at times abandoned their own highest moral precepts in the pursuit of dubious political objectives at the expense of Jewish life and limb.For an individual or institution to claim to respect and tolerate Jews and yet deny a Jew, any Jew, the right to proclaim Zionism as a personal spiritual, cutural and political raison d’etre, is like telling a Black person that you regard him as your equal and friend but please, do not mention the March on Birmingham; please, don’t talk about Martin Luther King; please, don’t bring up Rosa Parks to me.Zionism is the March on Birmingham, the Martin Luther King, the Rosa Parks of our people, the Jewish People. It is our march on the death camp at Auschwitz; it is our fight for an equal place on the bus of human history.And the State of Israel is our Promised Land of freedom and equality on earth.

How the term Zionism, and all that it so powerfully represents to our people after the Holocaust; how this term Zionism, this vision of redemption, this philosophy of empowerment, this bright candle held up to the night and which lead back home the displaced and tortured remnants, the dreamers and idealists, the Jews who came from all corners of the earth with a vision of self-determination and cultural, spiritual and political renewal; how this miracle of an idea was brought to fruition through the sacrifice and struggle of the brave Israeli people, is one of the great miracles of human history.

And how this same Zionism, distorted and vilified by one of the most sordid disinformation campaigns in history, became the bete noire of the present day, a refugee of a word, a pariah of an idea, is one of the most sordid instances in the long, cruel campaign to marginalize and, ultimately, to destroy the Jewish People.

Let us, then, be perfectly frank about one thing. To vilify, marginalize, suppress or outlaw Zionism politically, socially or culturally, for any reason whatever, is to wish no less then murderous extinction upon every Jewish man, woman and child in the world today. It is to refute our history entire, to deny us the memory of our long march out of bondage into equality and dignity. It is to assert ghettoization and ostracization, exile and massacre as the only fate befitting a Jew.

If ignorance of the law does not exempt one from the law, then ignorance of the unthinkable consequences to Jews of a world without Israel, and of ones own action to libel, marginalize or censor Zionism in any way, regardless of how subtle or seemingly innocuous, does not exempt anyone, then, from the charge of participation in fostering genocide against the Jewish People. For no less then genocide awaits our people should the present campaign against Zionism succeed.

We, the undersigned, affirm our right –moral, spiritual, cultural and political — to proclaim our Zionism in any manner that we choose, without hinderence or proscription, and further, we condemn, forcefully and completely the stance of anti-Zionism for what so blatently it is: a human rights violation and euphemistic mask behind which lurks the age-old nightmare of anti-Semitism.


The above was a statement released by the ‘Zionist 5′.

[UPDATE 10/17/2007 @ 14:21 PST] Some places where this story has been appearing:

99 Responses to “San Francisco Art Gallery Censors Writing and Art Work as Too Zionist”

  1. chutzpaleh said

    Appropriate disclaimers:
    I published the above entirely from press releases and email conversations with the “Zionist 5.”

    My opinion: I am so sorry for what happened to these artists and writers. Being censored sucks. I hope that they can go on creating from true authentic juicy parts of themselves.

    Despite my identification with the Zionist 5 as fellow Jewish intellectuals – artists and writers, and people in pain, I don’t self identify as a Zionist, and I find conflating anti-Israel with anti-Jewish hugely problematic. My associations with Zionism are not that it’s a movement of religious freedom or civil rights, but rather a nationalistic feeling having to do with the State of Israel. When we conflate anti-Israel, or anti-Israel’s politics, with anti-Jewish sentiment, it creates a pressure to conform – you have to be pro-Israel to be pro-Jewish. As a liberal, as someone who identifies with all oppressed people, I want to speak out on behalf of the Jews and the Palestinians, and the people of Darfur, the list goes on. I don’t want the kind of cognitive dissonance and a shove to the right that being “pro-Israel” means in our society. I’m deeply committed to civil rights for all people, to my particular tribe, and to my earth, and somehow I still don’t feel like a Zionist.

  2. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    What would you say if an exhibit had been cancelled because it was “too gay” or “too black” or “too feminist” or “too Canadian” or “too Iraqi” or “too (fill in the minority)”?

  3. chutzpaleh said

    They didn’t say it was “too Jewish.” They aren’t synonymous to me.

  4. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    Okay…Then “too liberal” “too conservative” “too American” “too Mexican.”

    I realize you don’t equate a national movement with a religion or culture. Would you say the same for another political or national movement? And I pose the question more openly…Not as an attack on Chutzpaleh.

  5. jlifer said

    OK all. I have a very relevant anecdote here. I am writing for kids, for material to be taught in educational programs. I am told to stay far away from: Civil Rights, mentions of race or religion, tigers and variations on “The Three Little Pigs,” among other things. It frustrates me to no end that fourth and fifth graders can’t learn about the very real issues of race and religion (and tigers!) It only fuels our society-wide obsession with public convention. Except that people like Himmelberger (is anyone else scared by this name?) can carry out this won’t-touch-it-with-a-ten-foot-pole attitude to a place that is meant to be truly free for expression? What the hell are we trying to do here? Let’s get these issues out there. Let’s get people talking openly about Zionism, instead of quietly brewing in their own bigoted thoughts and thinking of justifications of how they’re not REALLY anti-Semitic, just against the thought of those pesky Jews being able to create their own rules.

  6. ezra said

    The actions of this gallery really piss me off.

    It’s totally unfair that the term “Zionism” has been hijacked to link it with racism/ segregation /chauvinism. It aims to discredit not just injustices that have taken place in Israel, but also the dreams for a country that Jews are perfectly entitled to hold.

    It’s interesting that term “Zionism” is the ONLY example of a form of national pride that’s associated with an “ism.” What I mean is that people who are, say Mexican don’t have a political ideology – an ISM – slapped on them to describe the pride/ nostalgia that they feel towards their motherland. But by using this ISM called Zionism people like David Himmelberger don’t have to say that they’re against the Jew’s country, rather they can cloak it as being opposed to an “idea.”

    And that lie makes me angry.

  7. Oyster said

    Chutzpaleh:

    In the same way that the term ‘democracy’ doesn’t solely refer to the United States of America, ‘Zionism’ as a political ideology isn’t merely limited to the realpolitik of Israeli government for the past 60 years.

    As I wrote in my comment on Minsky’s post, I recommend that everyone read Arthur Hertzberg’s Zionist reader, The Zionist Idea. In truth, there were Zionist philosophies from the far left to the far right, and everything inbetween.

    So, in short, I believe that you saying that you’re not a Zionist based on your opinions on the State of Israel might be similar to someone saying that they don’t like Bush, and therefore they are against democracy.

  8. Oyster said

    This incident really stinks. I’m sure that Himmelberg whipped out that policy out of thin air, tailor-fit for the occasion.

    This reminds me of the incident with the Antisemitic camera store in Los Gatos that we covered.

  9. chutzpaleh said

    I might have different feelings about the word “Zionism” because I’m an Israeli citizen?

    For me saying “I don’t feel like a Zionist” is like saying I don’t feel patriotic. Relatively unoffensive, and certainly unsurprising.

    I’m going to pick up “The Zionist Reader’ from the library.

  10. lchaimlover said

    I think a better way to compare these issues is with the Southern Flag. You can argue me from here to eternity that it stands for black vs. white issues, but it also represents a culture and a people, and yes racism is apart of that history.

    I feel the term Zionism suffers from the same problem.

  11. [...] came across this post – San Francisco Art Gallery Censors Writing and Art Work as Too Zionist – and thought it was worth sharing. I hope you find it interesting too and take the time to read [...]

  12. The three pillars of Judaism are Torah, Jewish People and Jewish Land.

    Separating Jews from our homeland and disassociating from Zionism is contrary to the the very premise of Judaism.

  13. lchaimlover,

    The Confederate flag does not stand for racism. The Civil war had to do with the Southern States wanting to succeed from the Union and stop paying taxes to the Federal Government. The Yankees hated the idea that someone might choose to be free and independent of their rule. By that time, the slavery was nearly non-existent and was not the cause for the civil war.

    I agree that Zionism’s meaning has been distorted by anti-Semites much in the same way the Civil War’s history has been revised.

    Regardless of what the initial aspirations of Zionism or Confederate states were, in a truly egalitarian society it should not be an issue and everyone should be afforded an equal chance to be heard, which is not a matter in this case.

  14. [...] Check out what the progressives in the art world will do as soon as Jews turn uppity. [...]

  15. Tia said

    You can be a Zionist, and believe passionately in the right of the Jewish people to safe and secure borders in their ancient homeland. You can be a Zionist AND still believe that the Palestinian people can have their own land, with safe and secure borders. One does not preclude the other.

    In 1938, Hannah Senesh, poet warrior, wrote in her diary: “I’ve become a Zionist. This word stands for a tremendous number of things. To me it means, in short, that I now consciously and strongly feel I am a Jew, and am proud of it.”

    I am a Zionist. I am a Jew. I am proud of it. Its my name, my label, and I won’t let anyone else define it for me.

    Anyone up for a protest/vigil of this venue? I’d be happy to help organize one.

  16. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    I think the issue of patriotism has become a little convoluted. I can disagree with a policy (or policies)of America or Israel and still feel patriotic.

    One can be empathetic or supportive of the Palestinian cause and still be a Zionist…As long as you are not on an extreme end of the spectrum.

  17. minsky said

    Should Zionists be marginalized or censored? Absolutely not. They have a right to be what they are. On that same token, neither Holocaust denial, nor Islamism should be banned as ideas, as mindsets. They should be expressed, openly challenged and debated.

    I don’t think this case amounts to any censorship. Its a private gallery, and you cannot legislate politics where basic civic rights and business rights are involved.

    The debate gets heated when we talk public space, and government policy.

    ***

    That said, the Zionist 5 are no different for me than Islamists. Their mindset paranoid, and dangerous to everyones welfare. I support the gallery decision.

    This does not amount to me marginalizing Zionism. My disagreements with it are clear, but I repeat, I don’t question for a second, someones right to believe and be a Zionist.

    I have more respect for convinced Zionists, than ingenue cherry-pickers.

  18. Max said

    I am throughly disgusted by those in the so-called “progressive” community who would separate “Zionism” from “Judiasm”, as if they were separable.

    Hey San Francisco, Israel is the permanent homeland the Jewish people and no one can take it away from them! Got it? Its existence is the only insurance that the Jewish people will survive the 21st century.

    Only an anti-Semite or a total idiot would claim that “Zionism” is a dirty word.

  19. chutzpaleh said

    I know this won’t be a popular opinion, but I fear that not-so-religious Jews use Zionism to feel connected to Judaism – through their right-wing politics about Israel, for example, instead of having to make other choices that might be more painful – reassessing their relationship to Torah and their people.

  20. “You can be a Zionist AND still believe that the Palestinian people can have their own land, with safe and secure borders.”

    No way.

    1. There is no such thing as “Palestinians”
    2. I will never agree to legitimize someone who steals my land through murder and political machinations.

    “I don’t think this case amounts to any censorship. Its a private gallery, and you cannot legislate politics where basic civic rights and business rights are involved.”

    As a Libertarian, I agree.

    “That said, the Zionist 5 are no different for me than Islamists. Their mindset paranoid, and dangerous to everyones welfare. I support the gallery decision.”

    G-d forbid Jews live on the sliver of land smaller than California!!! Dangerous stuff! They should yield their homes to the greedy murderous Arabs instead. The Zionists should stop terrorizing the world with things like 911/Madrid/London…

    How did you manage to draw the parallel?

  21. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    As a private gallery, they have THE RIGHT

  22. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    As a private gallery, they have THE RIGHT cancel a show for any reason, but that does not mean that it IS RIGHT to cancel the show. People also have THE RIGHT to protest or disagree with the decision of the gallery (or any other private or government institution). The method in which people protest may or may not BE RIGHT.

    By that same token though, a gallery has THE RIGHT to cancel an exhibit for being “too fill-in-the-blank.” What would the response be if it had been “too Arabist?”

    Maoz:

    I totally respect your argument though I don’t totally agree with it. Obviously, you don’t believe in the Palestinians as a distinct people or nation. And there are arguments to support that. There are also arguments to the contrary. I merely claim that if someone supports the Palestinian or “Palestinian” cause, he or she can still be a Zionist (though, tragically, often not).

  23. “There are also arguments to the contrary. I merely claim that if someone supports the Palestinian or “Palestinian” cause, he or she can still be a Zionist”

    Absolutely not!!!
    If you buy into Arab propaganda that Jews occupy Arab land, then you can’t be a Zionist. You merely continue perpetuating the myth of occupation.
    You will never hear from them about mass massacres of Jews and the theft of their land and property throughout the 20th century (I don’t mean the modern suicide bombers). You will never hear that each of their last names can be traced directly to the 22 Arab States of origin, which they flocked from over the period of the 20th century and continue to do so. You will also never hear from them about a number of NGOs as well as the foreign governments’ presence in Eretz Yisroel, whose sole purpose is to fake thousands of cases of the so-called “human rights abuses” with the intent to create a paper trail for the UN to delegitimize the Jewish State as an “Apartheid” state.

    What you call a “Palestinian” cause is the cause to drive Israel into the sea. One simply can not defend the right of Israel’s enemies and continue calling oneself a Zionist.

    In the early 60s, a movement came out of France called Post-Modernism. Simply speaking, their claim is that each side has their own story and there is no absolute truth, like the 10 Commandments, for instance. In other words, what’s a crime to one person, is not a big deal to another. Post-Modernism defends moral relativism, which is completely contrary to Judaism.

    When you justify both sides, you fall into the trap of Post-Modernism’s bi-product: Post-Zionism and legitimize all that’s abhorrent to Judaism: moral relativism, you justify Arabs murdering Jews and stealing our land, you justify them attempting to revise our history through the destruction of the Jewish Holy places, Holocaust revisionism, etc. After all, they are all “Palestinian” causes!

    Sorry, dear, you have to pick sides.

  24. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    “What you call a “Palestinian” cause is the cause to drive Israel into the sea. One simply can not defend the right of Israel’s enemies and continue calling oneself a Zionist.”

    That may be what you call the “Palestinian” cause and it may in fact be the cause of a large percentage of people that identify with it. I would not call that the Palestinian cause. I would describe it as some type of two state solution with clear borders, security, a unified Jerusalem (in Israel), recognition of the right of existence etc… I doubt it will ever happen. I don’t know if this is necessarily fair but nothing ever is. It is just a completely unlikely solution. When I say that there could be a two-state solution (but not a bi-national-one-state solution) I don’t think that makes me an anti-Zionist. But Maoz and Minsky will probably double team me from opposite sides and disagree with me and each other.

    I don’t deny any of the terrible crimes perpetuated against Jews in Israel (or anywhere else for that matter) out of pure unadulterated Jew-hatred. And, in Israel, and many other places, they are clearly commited by people in the name of the “Palestinian” cause. I never support such causes and I never argue for moral or cultural relativism. I never compare the occasional short-comings of Israel with the violent anti-Semitism of much of the Islamic world. I know Israel has many enemies and Israel has the right and responsibility to defend itself from them internally and externally. I don’t support the aim of Israel’s enemies. I support the aims of her allies and acknowledge that they are few and far between.

    Perhaps, what I really mean to say is:
    Zionism does not have to preclude the eventual drawing of clear, well defined borders for Israel. (Nor does it have to be included.)

    I actually got into this way more than I meant to. I was originally only trying to argue why this gallery really sucks for making such a crappy and mean-spirited decision. I admit, I didn’t clearly state my position. I often try to state it with an argument or question. I wish I collected art so I could not buy some there.

  25. B.O.T.H. said

    If the gallery cancelled because of “too black”, there would be howls of outrage.

    Something being Too Zionist, apparently, is not outrageous.

    Oddly, I agree. I find little that is Zionist to be outrageous. I cannot, consequently, imagine anything being ‘too Zionist’.

    But I suspect that Himmelberger meant it differently.

  26. Ory said

    “Himmelberger Gallery, a well-known art gallery located in San Francisco’s tony Union Square, has decided to cancel plans to publish an art catalogue of one of its represented artists, noted author Alan Kaufman, who is *under contract* to the gallery.”

    If there’s an action for breach of contract here, I’m ready to litigate. The gallery may have the right to censor or cancel a show, but not if they contractually waived that right or made any guarantees or representations to the artists.

  27. Polly said

    I actually completely agree with the first thing Minsky said–the gallery owner had every right to cancel the show; it is a private business. Free speech is a pillar of the American constitution and should not be compromised even for Holocaust deniers or even petty opportunitists like Mearsheimer and Chomsky (both men, by the way, have never been censored but in fact received lucrative publishing contracts for works that gleefully bash Israel). What we are talking about here is the degree to which certain ideas are supported or suppressed in our society. THis gallery owner had been happy to show the paintings of an artist, who, over the course of several months, had openly expressed his convictions about Zionism and the Jewish people, and THEN, only after seeing the Z-word in print, with the Himmelberger name associated with it, withdrew his commitments at the last possible minute. H. never once said the book should not be published, only that he did not want his name on it. But, it means something (something very sad and dangerous) that this word inspired enough discomfort/disgust in him to refuse to publish it, even if it that is his right.

    I’m not sure what Minsky meant when he called us “ingenue cherry pickers,” but it is probably not worth knowing anyway. None of us are paranoid. We are, as Minsky, said, convinced Zionists–we want to freely and creatively express the existential need for a Jewish homeland and the necessary factors that support it–self-protection, national culture, collective pride. The book was supposed to be the venue for us to do that, but it was cancelled. Now we need to find another way to publish this book and continue to circulate these important ideas.

  28. I live close to San Francisco, used to work there. Believe me Nancy Pelosi is not the only Antisemite there by a long shot! It is everywhere and increasing.

  29. Oyster said

    I’m with Ory. No offense, Tia, but why wear out the pavement when we can haul Himmelberger to court?

    Polly, was that just a figure of speech, or was there a written agreement that Alan has a copy of?

  30. minsky said

    I’m not sure what Minsky meant when he called us “ingenue cherry pickers,” but it is probably not worth knowing anyway.

    Why are you so sure its not worth knowing? I assume you understand the meaning? I am clearly stating, that you are convinced Zionists, as you are neither naive (ingenue), nor selective (cherry-pickers).

    I respect you, for your conviction. Some of my best friends are Zionists. Unfortunatelly, if you read some of my previous posts, you’ll quickly realize that my respect doesn’t keep me from being completely and unequivocally against everything you believe.

    Cherry-pickers are those who say they are Zionists, but the ‘good’ Zionists. I.e. they don’t like A about Zionism, but they love B, so its only B they defend, not A. This is a position of convenience, and naive. It largely ignores that B cannot exist without A, and relies on a gread deal of wishfull thinking. You cannot argue against such a position, because consistently is not its virtue.

    ***

    Yes you are Paranoid, in direct proportion to the proximity of your ideological demise.

    To vilify, marginalize, suppress or outlaw Zionism politically, socially or culturally, for any reason whatever, is to wish no less then murderous extinction upon every Jewish man, woman and child in the world today.

    Yah, I’ll sell you a bridge, a camel, and a wigwam. I wouldn’t outlaw you or the prophet Mohammed. Ignorance isn’t a crime.

    Vilify? You do that to yourselves, through your distortion of Torah, Jewish values, and co-option of the Jewish identity. Through your awe-inspiring ability to play the victim when you are the usurper and tyrant.

    Marginalize? They world will breathe a sigh when you are marginalized, one less fanatically relativist group, bludgeoning everyone who disagrees onto the margins.

    We live on different planets. You take seriously the likes of Edward Said, whose influence on US policy is now, as it was during his life, nil. I take serious Denis Ross and/or Richard Pearl, whose influence on US policy is, as has been, disasterously out of proportion to their moral integrity.
    ***
    Zionism is the Civil Rights Movement of the Jewish People. It is the answered prayer to two thousand years of ceaseless persecution at the hands of unpredictable host nations and of religions that at times abandoned their own highest moral precepts in the pursuit of dubious political objectives at the expense of Jewish life and limb.

    The very concept of Civil Rights has nothing to do with you. You are not an answer to anyones prayer. At the time the Jewish world was praying, your ideological progenitors were busy denouncing Judaism the People of Israel, and accompanying prayers. Oyster points out, that we’ve had Zionism of all flavours. For the most part, we’ve had Labour Zionism, i.e. anti-religious secularists, and right wing Zionists who praised Musolini. As for 2000 thousand years of persecution. Historical accuracy is irrelevant for Zionists, isn’t it?

    Persecution and Jews goes back far more than 2000 years, to more like 4000. It took place irrelevant of where Jews were , in Isreal, or in Galus. For ZIonists, this doesn’t make sense. After all, you intepret history as a good 19th century German would – i.e. the glory days of the Holy Roman empire. Never mind all before or in between.

    The very notion that Zionism will somehow resolve a dilema of 4000 years, a dilema at the very heart of our covenant with G-d, is absurd, with a 19th century romantic notion of peoplehood and statism… laughable.

    ***
    Trust me. If you devoted more time to Torah, you would worry less about Isreal as the staple of your superficial, modern, watered-down Jewish identity. Then maybe you would perhaps contribute something to a revival of Cultural Zionism, instead of the perfection of sophistry, demagogy, and pseudo-art.

    So far your greatest gift to Civilisation is moral relativism, undermining all efforts to universalize human rights. Your pimping of Jewishness, butchery of our history, and hollowing out of our identity, amounts to the greastest spiritual destruction of the Jewish people.

  31. minsky said

    Appologies about the “pseudo-art”. I am not in a position to judge, so I take it back. Even if your work is entirely politicised, I’m of the queer stock which appreciates both Socialist Realism, agitprop, and can even agree that Wagner qualifies as “art”.

  32. [...] Oy Bay reports about a group of artists that calls itself the Zionist 5. Himmelberger Gallery, a well-known art gallery located in San Francisco’s tony Union Square, has decided to cancel plans to publish an art catalogue of one of its represented artists, noted author Alan Kaufman, who is under contract to the gallery. The decision is due to use of the word Zionism in the catalogue’s title ‘Visionary Expressionism: A Zionist Art.” Kaufman said in response: For myself, I want to say that to see oneself and ones colleagues censored for expression of a Zionist perspective is one of the most shocking experiences I’ve ever had as an artist, or writer. But what made it especially hard was to see my fellow writers, David Twersky, David Rosenberg, Etgar Keret, Polly Zavadivker, also censored. It was then that I understood that this was not merely censorship of me: this was censorship of an entire community, of my people, the Jewish People; of my colleagues, my fellow writers and artists. This drove home to me like nothing else that I must never accept such censorship from anyone, under any circumstances. I must stand up proudly as a Zionist and express myself freely, without shame or reservation. [...]

  33. Mike said

    San Francisco Voice for Israel (www.sfvoiceforisrael.org) may be interested in helping organize a public event outside the gallery to protest this, as was proposed above by Tia.
    (For those of you who don’t know us, we’re the ones who organize the pro-Israel counter-demos at anti-Israel events in the Bay Area) We would be particularly interested in discussing this with Polly, Alan, or any of the other members of the Zionist 5–we’d like to have them involved; after all, it’s THEIR work that is at issue here.

    My e-mail is Zonker4949@yahoo.com. (I’ll be away Thursday through Sunday so it may be a few days before I get back to you).

    Mike Harris
    SF Voice for Israel

  34. Polly said

    Those involved with this work strongly discourage protest! As stated before, the Himmelberger Gallery did nothing out of its rights. To protest or sue would totally distract from our message.

    Minsky, for a real history lesson that will question your moral righteousness I suggest you pick up a copy of Ruth Wisse’s very recent book, Jews and Power. I also suggest you refrain from assuming anything about my or my fellow writer’s Jewish identities, or what we do and do not “select” to defend about Zionism. I know a bit about halakhah and Jewish observance after studying Talmud from 9am-5pm for several years and am more than familiar with Jewish history. My Zionist convictions are based on an obligation and faith to enact the covenant that the Jewish people share with God. Not sure if you would call that “watered down” or relativist.

  35. Minsky!!! Bravo!

    I would be delighted to have you join the Jewish Club Maoz online forum with 2400 subscribers.
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/JewishClubMaoz/

    Our Splash Page reads as follows:

    We are pro-Jewish, pro-Israel, pro-Torah.
    Our interests are Judaism, politics, history and everything that supports Authentic Jewish Idea.

    Worse than Jews for Jesus,
    Worse than Jews for Gurus,
    Worse than Jews for Marx,
    Jews for Nothing.
    Rabbi Meir Kahane

    The biggest thing holding back the coming of Moshiach
    is sitting around and waiting for him.

    Talmud Bavli Sanhedrin 97:B
    Rambam Hilchot Melachim 12:2

  36. [...] except for Zionist art, also known in intellectual circles as “that Jewish stuff”. Zionist artists are out. Himmelberger Gallery, a well-known art gallery located in San Francisco’s tony Union Square, has [...]

  37. “for a real history lesson that will question your moral righteousness”

    I see, we can forget all the other lessons now because someone wrote a new book?

    What if I said to you: “for a real history lesson” read books by Rabbi Meir Kahane, who had two smichot: one from a Yeshiva in the US, and the other from an Israeli one.

    Even tho you ridicule Minsky’s “moral righteousness,” I agree with him wholeheartedly and have no problem being in the minority because I know that the Torah is on my side. Simple as that.

    Torah supersedes all books. Sadly, most American and even Israeli Jews forget what’s in the interest of the Jews as opposed to the secular, liberal Israeli government that has been busy unsuccessfully appeasing non-Jews, or the the US interests, which have nothing to do with Jews either.

  38. Oyster said

    Maoz, uhhh… have you read Minsky’s thoughts on Zionism?

    Not the usual crowd that you run with.

  39. Oyster said

    Polly:

    If indeed a legal contract was broken, then I think it is appropriate to sue for damages.

    If it is just a matter of them exercising their rights as a private venue to be jerks, then there’s not much to stand on.

  40. I’ve gone to that link.

    It seems that Minsky is a religious Zionist, even tho he does not label himself that.

    Essentially it comes down to one criteria: is Israel a Jewish or a Democratic State?

    If you answer “Both,” you will mean Democratic. The word Democracy is a Hellenistic term and means “mob rule.” Modern Secular Zionism is just that. It affords preferential treatment to its Arabs, over the Jewish rights (think Gaza, Daniel Pinner, surrender of part of Jerusalem, pretending there’s a peace partner, etc.)

    The socialist State of Israel truly has nothing to do with Torah values and promotes values abhorrent to Judaism. Considering its late 19th century origin, it’s not surprising.

  41. Oyster said

    Maoz, is this a case of seeing what you want to see?

    I’ll give you a break, since Minsky is fastidious in his avoidance of any real position. All the better a vantage from which to criticize others.

    But from what I have gleaned from his writings, it seems that he doesn’t believe that there’s any justification for Jews being in Eretz Israel until the Moshiakh is here. And he’s called Religious Zionism a perversion of Torah.

    Care to revise your statement, ma’am?

  42. Mike said

    No problem Polly, this is a case where we are happy to defer to you and the other authors as far as any decisions on public action.

    If this gets bigger and you change your mind (for example, holding a public press conference outside the gallery) we can definitely provide a pro-Israel supporting group.

    Mike

  43. Minsky!

    Please clarify your stance on Israel’s existence, Secular and Religious Zionism.

    Do you honestly believe that Jews are oppressing poor “Palestinians”?

    Do you truly believe that we must stop fighting for our tiny sliver of land given to us by HaShem?

    “The biggest thing holding back the coming of Moshiach is sitting around and waiting for him.”

    Talmud Bavli Sanhedrin 97:B
    Rambam Hilchot Melachim 12:2

    What do you believe is in the interest of the Jews? Because so far I only see you criticizing what doesn’t work. What works? Pure negativity neither helps anyone, nor resolves anything.

  44. David said

    Chutzpaleh – just because you aren’t a Zionist and don’t believe that Zionism is necessarily part of Judaism (I agree with you, and just look at what 99% of Orthodox Rabbis said about Zionism until 1948 and beyond), doesn’t mean that selectively banning Jewish nationalism is not anti-Jewish.

    It’s like saying that just because I’m not a Hasid, that a ban on Hasidim (and not on any streams of any other religion) is OK.

    Of course, this whole thing has also brought all the “Nancy Pelosi is an anti-Semite” etc. crazies out of the woodwork. The last thing we need.

  45. chutzpaleh said

    Indeed, we don’t know the intentions of the gallery. It could totally be anti-Jewish. But they could also just not support any nationalist movements or nationalistic art. And that’s what they say they do.

  46. chutzpaleh said

    Re: bringing new commenters out… At first I was really concerned that certain commenters were shutting other people down. I’m less concerned about that today, but want to encourage other people to bring intentionality (kavanah) to what you’re writing. I think everyone can recognize that shutting other people down – emotionally or in terms of engaging in the dialogue- may not be a means to get them to agree with you.

  47. Grif said

    The “Zionist 5″ refer to Zionism as “the civil rights movement of the Jewish people” and strangely compare an ideology to Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks. If their manifesto above is any example of the essays in question, it is small wonder Himmelberger balked at lending his name to such strident ultra-nationalism.

    If there is a Promised Land for Jews, and everybody else, then it is surely not Israel, the most dangerous place in the world to be Jewish, and other like exclusionary nations but the United States and other such pluralist Democracies. Jewish-Americans are the most successful minority group in our history, and it is not just at the insistence of their parents.

    Israel, on the other hand, not openly discriminates against non-Jewish Israelis, but many Jews themselves get the short end of the Israeli stick – because they’re not the right sort of Jews! Try living as an Ethiopian Jew in Israel, you might as well be an Arab. Jews here in the USA – across the wide Jewish spectrum – are freer to be Jewish and practice their own version of Judaism (or not), as they themselves define it, than Israeli Jews are. Are American Jews willing to put up with no civil weddings but Orthodox weddings as the only recognized marriage? American Jewish women willing to put up with divorces dictated by biblical law? Orthodox Judaism as the only recognized form, with Reform and Conservative barely recognized and unable to perform such simple things as marriages? This the Zionist 5 call a Promised Land?

    To dare compare the narrow limits of Zionism with its clarion call of back to the ghetto of our choosing, to the open inclusive humanity of King and Parks is not only astonishingly ignorant but voids the phrase “Civil Rights Movement” of all meaning.

    When Likud and Kadima, to say nothing of most other Israeli parties, subscribe to the ideals of King’s “I have a dream” speech for all the citizens of Israel and all those in the WB and Gaza, then Zionism will be on the road to a civil rights movement. At the moment, and historically, it is merely a movement of narrow ethnic nationalism and ethnic separatism. Far more accurate to compare it to the exclusionary ideology of the Black Muslims than to the inclusive idealism of Dr. Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks.

  48. Grif, LOL!

    You just don’t get it, do ya?

    Jews, no matter how hard try to fit in, never have and never will. There is not a single instance in Jewish History when gentiles helped the Jews, yet we are expected to treat others as equals?

    Whenever Jews are expected to help someone else, it’s a “Humanitarian” issue, but as soon as Jews need help, suddenly it becomes “a Jewish problem” with zero reciprocity. If push came to shove, it’s only your fellow Jew that will cover your back — not Rosa Parks, not MLK.

    Neither the Conservative nor Reform Movement reflect Torah values: each is practicing Judaism selectively, throwing out the parts that are not convenient to observe, setting their own morality standards and ignoring the ones given to us on Mt. Sinai.
    When and how does one choose which part of Torah is relevant and which chunks to throw out?
    Had you studied even a morsel of Torah, you would know that no human being on Earth has the right to dictate to a Jew how to live our lives: if it’s not in the Torah, if it’s a “man-made” value, as Jews we don’t follow them. This is what earned us the reputation of stubborn and stiff-necked people”
    Yet, it is precisely the morals Torah teaches us, that helped us survive and prosper past many civilizations. Ancient Egypt, Rome, and many others have tried to oppress us, have come and gone, yet we’re still here!!! Our secret is sticking to Torah.

    None of the gibberish you wrote reflects a single Torah value, therefore is total nonsense.

    We have the homeland in which we should be free from needing to appease any gentiles, which has always ended in disaster for the Jews. Even though Israel has its share of problems, it’s still ours.

    The likes of you are entirely too comfortable in Galut (Diaspora). We know what fate followed those that acted like you throughout history. The Spanish Jews said: “We’ve been here for 1400 years, what could possibly happen to us?”
    Skipping far ahead, the German Jews in the 1930s said: “It’s 20th Century, what could possibly happen to us in this enlightened day and age?”
    Just because the majority of Amreican Jews choose the path of least resistance, of less observance and assimilation, it does not mean it’s the right one, and history shows that it has never been the right one.
    The modern Israel’s attempt to emulate other government systems and states is a problem, just like it has been a problem since the day ancient Israelites asked for a King because others had one…
    American Jews’ attempt to be like everyone else will end unsuccessfully as well.

  49. Grif said

    Maoz,

    Yes, indeed I do get it. You, my friend, make my argument for me, all too well.

  50. Oyster said

    Grif:

    So Martin Luther King, Jr. & Rosa Parks are a “good” form of
    nationalism (black nationalism), but Jewish nationalism is a “ultra”
    nationalism? Yeah, no double-standard there, folks.

    Israel is the Promised Land, both by cultural/religous tradition and
    by the facts on the ground. Israel has rescued more Jews from more
    places around the globe than the US can ever claim. When the US was
    closing its doors before WWII to desperate Jewish refugees in Europe,
    the Jewish underground in Mandatory Palestine fought tooth & nail to
    rescue Jews. And I’d turn your argument on your head. The Jewish
    population in the State of Israel has a positive growth rate, while
    the number of Jews in the US is splitting in half in each
    generation. Statistically, it is safer for me to raise my children
    Jewish in Israel than in the US.

    Captain Obvious, thanks for reminding us that Israel as a society has
    flaws. Now, finally, after years of being a flawless country, Israel
    can join the elite group of nations that have imperfect societies.

    Unlike the Civil Rights Movement, the Zionist movement was created to
    help ensure rights for Jews to live as Jews by having a state of our
    own. African Americans of the 1960′s were not a stateless people, as
    the Jews were. So it’s like comparing apples with oranges.

    Today in Israel, there are civil rights movements for Sephardim,
    Ethiopian Jews, Israeli Arabs, etc. And in many ways they have been
    much more successful than in the US. The rights and benefits afforded
    homosexuals in Israel is far more progressive and humane than the
    current situation in the US.

  51. Grif said

    Oyster,

    Your grasp of history is terrible.

    Neither King nor Parks were Black Nationalists. For Christ’s sake, do you even understand the meaning of the term? No one in the SCLC were Black Nationalists. Marcus Garvey, yes; the Black Muslims, surely; the Panthers, why not? But Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks? Are you completely out of your mind?

    Your second paragraph is equally erroneous. The United States alone saved more Jews from the Holocaust than did the Zionist Yishuv. Hell, just about everyone did, as the Zionists made it clear they had little or no interest in rescue.

    The Zionist Yishuv in Palestine behaved shamefully before the War, during the War, and after the War. They openly collaborated with the Third Reich from 1933 to 1939; sabotaged the Jewish-led world boycott against Hitler and saved Hitler’s economic goose with the Transfer Agreement (read Edwin Black’s book, “The Transfer Agreement.” He and the leaders of major Zionist groups who blurb the book actually attempt to support this behavior). Then there is Ben Gurion’s open opposition to the Kindertransport, where he stated he would “gladly” let 5,000 of the children die if only he could get the other 5,000 to Palestine, this he called “thinking of the future.” Then there is the betrayal of 25,000 Slovakian Jews by the Jewish Agency in Switzerland, who let them die for the want of a few dollars and defended the withholding of the money; there is also the story of Rudolph Kastner, the Jewish Agency representative, who collaborated with Eichmann and betrayed more than 400,000 Hungarian Jews in exchange for the release of a relative handful who were considered useful to the Zionists (along with all of his own family members). There is also the fact that the Zionists, aside from the relative handful surrounding the Bergson Group, actively opposed nearly every single rescue plan or attempt – unless it entailed sending the rescued to Palestine. Rabbi Stephen Wise, one of the major Jewish spokespersons and leading Zionist of his time, testified before Congress in 1938 (after Krystalnacht) and in 1943 (after the revelations of the camps) that American Jews did not believe it necessary to change the immigration quotas. Once again, a Zionist presuming to speak for millions who were never asked in the first place, but typical of a mainstream Zionist – If all these Jews showed up in the US how would you ever get them to Palestine? Better they never arrive in the first place.

    During the war future PM Shamir and his band of terrorists made numerous overtures to the Third Reich offering to open a second front against England in Palestine in exchange for state recognition by Hitler; the Yishuv was also known to shop resistance groups to the Gestapo, with whom they had had a long and fruitful relationship, in exchange for the release of small groups of their cadre. All in all, if not for the Zionists far more Jews would have survived the war. Then, of course, there is horrendous treatment Israel afforded the survivors that began even before they arrived in Israel and extends to today. (For starters read: “In the Shadow of the Holocaust: The struggle between Jews and Zionists in the Aftermath of World War II,” by Yosef Grodzinsky of Tel Aviv University) The common Israeli nickname for survivors was “Sabonim.” You do know what that means, don’t you?

    As to your population figures: the fastest growing Jewish population in the world today belongs to Germany. Many Jews, particularly survivors, are leaving Israel for Germany, where they receive better treatment all around. In the US if one counted all the people who would qualify for the “Right of Return” as Jews instead of only the ones self-identifying on the census the American Jewish population would be considered more than twice as large.

    Yes, comparing Zionism with the Civil Rights movement is indeed like comparing apples and oranges – that’s what I said in the first place.

    You claim homosexuals to have more rights in Israel? Are you mad? Every time anyone suggests a Gay Pride parade in Jerusalem you can hear the screams of outrage halfway around the world. Half of Israel is screaming imprecations – Haaretz and the Jerusalem Post are filled with it. And as for your notion that Israeli Civil Rights groups for different sorts of Jews are more successful in Israel than they are in the USA: I would answer that in the US there is no need for a different civil rights groups for every single variety of Jewish experience. But the larger question remains, which you avoid with your disingenuous “oh nobody’s perfect.” Why, may I ask, do Jews need a Civil Rights group in Israel at all? Is it not the Promised Land? Was Israel not created, as you claim, to ensure civil rights for Jews? It seems that Zionism cannot even deliver on that, for once you claim to have a “Jewish State” then everyone began to argue over who is really a Jew and crapping on those who don’t fit any one particular bill. The same absurdity goes for all other states founded on ethnic nationalism. That is merely one reason why ethnic nationalism should be shunned and pluralism embraced.

  52. AaronfromWG said

    USA is not good for the Jews. Wherever we do not have to struggle as a people to survive, we disappear. The Jews of Old China faced no persecution so they disappeared. The Jews of the USA are in the process of disappearing. To much persecution is definitely not good for the Jews(Spanish Inquisition, Nazi Holocaust), but a little persecution keeps us strong. We need more Ann Coulters. See how we all unite against her. USA is no promised land for Jews. It’s a promised land for people who want to abandon Judaism.

  53. Grif,

    It is not news that Jews had our fare share of traitors. And no one describes them better that Rabbi Meir Kahane in his book “Never Again” There’s also a book called “The Enemy within” By Jacob Gurewich that was published a few years before the one by the same title from Savage, in which he describes his own experince as an Irgun fighter during WW2, and the infiltration of the Zionist movement by Communists, their constant infiltration by the Soviets, etc.

    However, just because the majority of so-called Jews, that chose the path of betrayal and least resistance exist, does not mean they are/were right. The Jewish population of modern Germany grew due to Russian Jews escaping the Soviet Union after the Iron curtain was lifted, but for all the wrong reasons. They worship the almighty dollar instead of HaShem, and went there because of their disproportioned semce of entitlement and all the welfare they can pocket without having to work.

    The Gay Pride parade was a travesty because those parading specifically planned to avoid the Muslim or Christian Neighborhoods on their route, but though nothing of offending the observant Jews in the heart of Yerushalaim, and planned to march through our neighborhoods. There goes that double-standard again! The Christians and the Muslims deserve more respect than the Jews?

    “Why, may I ask, do Jews need a Civil Rights group in Israel at all?”

    For the same reasons they need them here: preferential treatment as a ‘minority’ in exchange for more welfare/union cash. Those that focus on skin color, are usually the racists. When Israel becomes truly a Jewish Nation, and not the “Democratic” one, when we focus on the fact that we are all Jewish, these problems will become non-issues.

    “Neither King nor Parks were Black Nationalists” — but have you ever seen them come to the aid of Jews?
    “For Christ’s sake” — Hell no!!!

    “The United States alone saved more Jews from the Holocaust than did the Zionist Yishuv” just by playing on the beaches of Florida while shipfuls of German Jewish immigrants were being turned away from the American shore, to be sent back to Germany to their certain death.

    As far as the Europeeing Jewry goes: when Jaborinsky toured the Jewish European towns, trying to warn the Jews of an upcoming disaster, he was ridiculed and labelled a Jewish Nazi. The majority of them were perfectly comfortable in Galut and couldn’t care less about going to Palestine.

    Throughout the Jewish history, there have been strong and proud Jews that fought for their rights (Like Jacob Gurewich), as well as the opposite kind: someone like you — comfortable in Galut even if it means marching straight into the oven.

  54. New Yorker said

    Hello SF from NY. I really hope that you protest this truly outrageous and racist incident. I find this very alarming, the word Zionism/Zionist cannot be used in an art catalogue! A prominent component of the Nazis’ propaganda campaign was its sustained, relentless effort to isolate and ostracize Jewish art and Jewish artists. I find the gallery’s decision reprehensible, and they do mean Jews, not just the word Zionist. I’m relieved to read that a number of you in SF are standing up for the truth about Zionism and Judaism, but am sickened by some of the other posts, for example:

    Minsky wrote “the Zionist 5 are no different for me than Islamists. Their mindset paranoid, and dangerous to everyones welfare. I support the gallery decision.” You have every right to support the Gallery’s decision, but for you to suggest that a moral equivalence exists between Islamists and Zionists is preposterous! Zionists don’t fly jumbo jet into buildings killing thousands of innocent people, they don’t resort to homicide/suicde attacks, and are not part of a culture who is attempting to perpetrate hate, deceit and destruction upon Western civilization. If you honestly believe that Zionists are paranoid and dangerous, I suggest that you educate yourself a bit more about the subject in order to avoid appearing ignorant.

  55. minsky said

    Maoz and Oyster. I will clarify my position in an upcoming post.

    Polly. My ‘assumptions’ were entirelly based on your own manifesto.

  56. minsky said

    Of course Zionists and Islamists are not equivalent. No doubt.

    Yet, Zionists and Islamists, are often equally fanatical, equally hypocritical, and both employ fear as a political tool. Both have enjoyed uncanny US support (until the Jihadis hit us, we were always backing the scum) both have roled back democracy, and we can’t talk about either too critically in the mainstream.

    How many articles have you read in the NYTimes attacking Saudi Arabia? Just about as many as you’ve read attacking the Zionist lobby.

    Of course, on net, there may be more differences than similarities.

    ***

    Maoz and Grif.

    You are both right. Yishuv does have a shitty record on Hitler, while Jabotinsky openly praised Mussolini. I agree with both of you, “Zionism” and “Civil Rights” haven’t appeared on the same line since the sixties. That said, who doesn’t have a shitty record on Hitler, and who didn’t openly praise Mussolini in the thirties?

    At least we agree the Zionist 5 manifesto is trash.

    ***

    The gallery has ultimate say on what goes up and what doesn’t. Labels do make a difference. For example-

    “genocide” of 1.5 million Armenians. VS “massacre” of 1.5 million Armenians.

    What gives?

  57. steve said

    Was Nazism the civil-rights movement of the German people?

    Zionism is not a civil-right movement….ridiculous…

  58. steve said

    By the way – New Yorker – if YOU don t want to appear ignorant than don t bother trying to defend Israels actions – the state or its fanatical supporters.

    Yes there are very comparable attributes

    And btw – in all likelyhood zionists played a very big role in 9.11 – YOU should educuate yourself….

  59. steve said

    will u deny zionists had a huge role the Iraq war

  60. AaronfromWG said

    Steve wrote:
    “And btw – in all likelyhood zionists played a very big role in 9.11 – YOU should educuate yourself….”

    It’s a good thing the word Zionist exists or you would have had to use the word you really mean. “Jew”. That might make you look like the Bigot you are. Instead of Jews controlling the Media, Banking, Etc. it’s the “Zionists”. How convenient.

    P.S. How ironic that you misspelled the word educate. Idiot.

  61. steve said

    Well aren’t you clever – seeing irony in typos and being able to tell “what I really mean”.

    Too much….

  62. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    Steve:

    I hope you have something other than total propaganda and bogus science to claim that Zionists were responsible for 9.11 and not Mohammed Atta and his buddies.

    I know I shouldn’t say this here because we should not resort to ad-hominem attacks. But that claim just makes you sound like a total butt-head.

    And if you are trying to create some type of moral equivalence between Zionism and Naziism, then you are a bigger butt-head than I first thought.

    Naziism’s goals were to create a “Judenfrei” Germany and ultimately “Judenfrei” world. Zionism’s goal is a Jewish homeland in Israel. I am aware there may be some subtle distinctions in terms to be made, but let’s not quibble. I don’t see the similarity. And I don’t know any self proclaimed Zionists who desire the destruction of any other group of people no matter how difficult it may be to live side by side.

  63. Myself said

    Well,
    The Jews deserve a home wherever they go. I myself am jewish, and my grandfather was a holocaust survivor. Children there are playing war everyday since age five. Everyone man woman and child is trained to be a murderer. There is no peace in generations of slaughter. This will never end. You can be pro-zionist romantically, but the truth of the matter is these people have commited themselves to an eternity of murder. There is no liberation in their army. Those who speak out against war are exiled to other country’s or are imprisoned. Israel is no longer truly Jewish, it is a modern form of Judaism that martyrs itself and others for its supposed peaceful goals. Jews are safe in america, but no liberal should be forced to aupport a voice of war, that is in itself a spiritual practice. Whether it falls under the guise of religion remains to be seen, but we have no right to call peaceful people racist because they will not support death in trying times.
    Myself

  64. AaronfromWG said

    Great response, Steve. Rather than making stupid accusations why don’t you back up what you say with evidence.

  65. AaronfromWG said

    The Zionist media must control all the evidence. Right Steve?

  66. steve said

    What exactly have I said that you would you like me to ‘back up’ Aaron?

  67. AaronfromWG said

    Back this up:

    And btw – in all likelyhood zionists played a very big role in 9.11 – YOU should educuate yourself….

  68. kneidalach said

    The INSULTS!
    they’re cracking me up!

  69. Oyster said

    Grif:

    I always suspected that anti-Israel nuts bellow so loudly about their
    conspiracy theory connecting Zionists with Nazis because their
    parroting their hero, Goebbels, with the Big Lie technique. You see,
    it turns out that it wasn’t one of their hated Zionists that
    was called up for genocide charges at Nuremberg, but the father of
    Palestinian nationalism and BFF of Hitler, the Grand
    Mufti of Jerusalem al-Husseini
    . Sorry for that inconvenient truth.

    Yeah, the US saved Jews with open arms, and pre-state Israel was
    actually a bunch of Jew-Nazis. What a load of revisionist bunk.

    Minsky:

    How many articles have you read in the NYTimes attacking Saudi
    Arabia?

    Good question Minsky. Where oh were is a Walt-&-Mearsheimer dynamic
    duo for the House of Saud? I personally think its a wicked conspiracy
    of the Zionists, don’t you?

    I mean, if the Saudis didn’t exist, the all-powerful Zionist would
    have to invent them, no?

    Oh great. Enter stage right the 9/11 nutso’s. Why did you invite your
    friends, Grif?

  70. minsky said

    You have to be nuts to put Nazis and Zionists in the same bag. A bit coo-coo, no?

    Where do you get that Zionists had something to do with 911?

    For conspiracies, I’ll direct you to my post-
    http://oybay.wordpress.com/2007/08/29/embrace-jewish-power/

    ***

    I don’t get your question Oyster. Walt and Mearsheimer don’t write about the Saudis. There has been mention by Brookings and Heritage. Overall, dearth of coverage. Sorry state of affairs. We should do something about it.

    I suggest we start a http://www.bombsaudiarabi.com movement. Seriously.

    ***

    As for revisionism. I disagree. Grif mentions very relevant literature.

    America did lousy job of dealing with Jews during the War. Grif raises the question, did it do a better job than Israel?

    Any factual answers on this?

    ***

    British trained Palestinian paratroopers, were a volunteer corp, first tasked with intelligence duties performed for the British, and then given the freedom to pursue Jewish interests. Alhough how much of freelancing was condoned by London remains unclear, what is clear, is the absence of official Zionist participation in the undertaking.
    http://www.holocaustchronicle.org/staticpages/529.html

    Correct me if I am wrong.

    ***

    In any case, respect to Grif. Amazingly eloquent, and pertinent. You are absolutely right on all points. People here apparently need to distort what you say in order to opine on it. No insult intended, but the argument has trully degenerated. Where do you guys have to dig to make the nazi-zionist connection on Grif’s part? Is it really so hard to resist the need to associate him with Steve?

  71. [...] a post on Oy Bay entitled “San Francisco Art Gallery Censors Writing and Art Work as Too Zionist”: Himmelberger Gallery, a well-known art gallery located in San Francisco’s tony Union Square, has [...]

  72. steve said

    Oh don’t you just love the pathetic straw man arguments- even with links!

    As I said – “in all likelyhood” – which is true.

    I’ll get into it later – it’s not controversial or conspiratorial. It’s simply what the best evidence indicates.

    ps Oyster do you think posting ONE example of an individual during the second world war PROVES that Israel wasn’t created by “jew-nazis” as you put it?(I wouldn’t – but who cares, right?)

    When you grow up enough to have an adult dicussion, I’m ready…..

  73. steve said

    btw for the record, as meaningless as it has become – I don’t think zionist’s are comparable to nazi’s in deed or scale- obviously the nazi’s were far, far worse.

    But – the intent was the same – unarguable – to utilize nationalistic fervor to advance a goal of stealing land while killing and oppressing an indigenous population.

    Thats not revisionism – that’s just the truth.

  74. AaronfromWG said

    Steve says:”And btw – in all likelyhood zionists played a very big role in 9.11 – YOU should educuate yourself….”

    Jews are not indigenous to Germany and Arabs are not indigenous to Israel/Palestine. Even the UN does not recognize Palestinians as one of the many indigenous groups that they do recognize. If you don’t know the meaning of a word, such as indigenous, then look it up in a dictionary. Now I’m sure you don’t own a dictionary so lucky for you they have internet dictionaries.

    You still haven’t backed up your first statement about Zionists and 9-11. Are you ready to admit that you were just typing stupid stuff and don’t know what you’re talking about?

  75. steve said

    Jews weren’t indigenous to Poland, Germany or Czechoslovakia etc?

    Arabs aren’t indigenous to Palestine?

    No kidding. Tell you what – you explain this for me, and I’ll back up my 9.11 comments…

  76. minsky said

    Steve, before you get carried away, here is a website about 911 and Israelis. Please, do read it. You will see why you are wrong.

    http://www.nocturne.org/~terry/wtc_4000_Israeli.html

    ***

    Don’t go down the slippery slope. Yes, Zionists did play their part in Iraq… but hold your horses! 911 was a crime of monstrous proportions, for which only one state deserves disproportionate credit:

    Saudi Arabia.

    Of course you wont find the leprosy like faces of the Sauds on any conspiracy website. They are ugly.

    Please, keep Jews and Israelis out of 911. This is Arab propaganda, sick anti-semitic crap, that discredits you beyond measure.

    The Iraq invasion, is an altogether different horse.

    ***

    About Zionists and Nazis. I am glad you understand the fundamental differences, Steve. Then, there is the question of origin, and history. Here we encounter troubled waters, and we have to tread lightly, and with respect for Nazi victims. Its extremely easy to make false analogies, and get carried away with characterisations. It doesn’t take long to call Mother Terresa a tramp, the Pope a pimp, and Jesus Christ a mafiosi. Nor for that matter… does it take long to call Mohammed the envoy of peace and his religion the Religion of Peace.

    Yes, Zionists are aggressive smucks, but so are Peace protestors who chuck stones at cops, environmentalists who arson homes, and anti-abortionists who torch doctors. We can put them in the same bag, but this serves no purpose whatsoever.

    Zionism is a question of Jewish integrity. Treat it with care, i.e. see Maoz and Grif, and just about everyone here who is civil and defends Zionism. If you are careless, you run the risk of trivializing the discussion.

  77. Grif said

    Oyster,

    I see by your bio on this site that while you appear barely old enough to shave you are a graduate of UC Berkeley, a very fine school that apparently let you down when it came to critical thinking and history.

    I see also that you have long been an ardent Zionist, therefore considering your feckless youth and poor education I suppose it natural that you would confuse Black Nationalism with the open inclusive teachings of Dr. King. But I do ask: how is it that despite your degree from a first-rate college, you still know absolutely nothing about the largest social upheaval of the second half of the American 20th century? Or is that being an ardent Zionist (and a rather poor student) you insist on aligning Zionism with every good in the world, no matter how poor a fit?

    Yes, the Grand Mufti allied himself with Hitler. The actions of this one lone man no doubt proves your point – whatever the hell that may be. As a retort to the actions of the Zionist Yishuv I don’t see the point. Do you agree with what I wrote, but now argue that the Mufti’s behavior justifies the collaboration of the Zionists with the Third Reich? Very odd argument indeed.

    You reference the 1939 SS St. Louis incident in passing, as though any mere mention is enough to silence anyone, yet still you don’t seem to know much about it. It was FDR and his administration who were responsible for ensuring that the 936 Jewish refugees aboard that ship did not return to Hamburg. Throughout the incident FDR worked closely with the Joint Distribution Committee to find them refuge, which included offering massive bribes to the Cuban Gov’t. It was FDR that arranged the following after 29 passengers disembarked at Havana: 288 taken in by England, the remaining 619 divided amongst France, Belgium, and Holland. No doubt you consider it anti-semitic of FDR not to have known that Europe would be overrun by the Nazis within a year, but still he did his best considering that he could not openly violate US law, despite the fact that Americans, Jewish and Gentile alike, were strongly in favor of such – all that is, I’d wager, except American Zionists. Of the total 936 Jews aboard the St. Louis 709 survived the war. I argue they survived because of efforts by FDR and his administration. Read “Saving the Jews: Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Holocaust” by Robert Rosen.

    You also reference Hannah Szenes. You should know that she was not “captured” as such. She surrendered, talked into it by Rudolf Kastner. And yes, the fact that was dropped behind the lines in the first place demonstrates that there were at least some rescue attempts by the Yishuv. I agree with that, there were “some,” but only some.

    Rather than decrying everything I’ve written as “revisionist bunk” why don’t you look into, perhaps even read, the sources I’ve listed and weigh the evidence? (kids your age still read, don’t they?)

    And do you really believe that hysterical charges of anti-semitism against any and all critics of Israel and Zionism is the most intelligent and effective manner to defend your beliefs? If that is the best you can do perhaps it is time to reevaluate your stake in Zionism. Is it so bereft that you can only throw a temper tantrum in its defense?

  78. steve said

    Minsk – the story about the 4000 Israeli’s wasn’t what I had in mind.

    I’m aware that story is false – or from what I’ve read.

  79. steve said

    I see it does get into one of the facts that I had in mind – the 5 five celebrating Israelis.

    Which it doesn t bother to deny – though it does attempt to render insignificant. To which I d have to say I strongly disagree with.

    The fact is they were 5 Israelis celebrating the destruction of the towers and making documented comments about Palestinians being the problem – pardon the prose my keyboard is doing some weird shit…

    They later appeared on a program in Israel claiming they had been there to document the event – which indicates, clearly for me, that they knew it was coming. Other evidence strongly indicates they were following some of the hijackers – at minimum, IMO they knew it was coming – more likely they were involved in setting it up in some way.

    Why do I say this – well for u it`s because I`m an antisemitic bigot.

    For me it`s because I know some of the history of the Mossad and Israel in general and there are verifiable accounts of operations that are in line with this type of operations – `false flags` I believe they are refered to.

    btw I`m not a conspiracy nut. I pretty much ignored the stories about 9,11 after the Iraq war started – but there were always massive problems with the Bush appointed commission – serious problems that needed to be investigated.

    I recently had some time to do that – and I`m actually pretty disturbed by what I`ve found

    And I think more people should seriously look at what happened on the day and what has happened since in terms of the government policy. When you take the time to investigate the facts(and not read something that only reinforces what you believe – popular mechanic`s articles for example, or some elements of the `truth movement) – and be able to sort through the mountains of rubbish out there too – I think the inescapable conclusion is something is seriously, seriously wrong with the official account of what happened…

  80. Grif said

    Oyster,

    One more thing on the SS. St. Louis. Of the 936 Jews aboard more than 700 already held visas for America and guaranteed numbers on the German/Austrian quota. All involved were certain that they would be in the US within fairly short order – and they would have been, if not for Sept. 1939.

    It should also be noted that at FDR’s insistence the entirety of the combined German and Austrian immigration quota was set aside for Jews.

  81. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    Supposedly, these 5 Israelis belong to a clandestine organization capable of orchestrating the largest terrorist attack in history. Not only do they orchestrate it though, they also manage to convince people who are the sworn enemies of Israel to perform this task. These people also happen to be in residense in the USA taking flight lessons without the landing portion of the instruction. Then, after brilliantly orchestrating such a scheme, they then act like total numbskulls, and sit around videotaping the incident in plain site and make dumb jokes about it. Terrorist masterminds or stupid jocks…you decide. Oh…I almost forgot…these evil doers are also representative of all Zionists and were probably put up to this task in one of their secret meetings where they decide the future of the world’s banks and media. It sure would make for a great story though.

  82. ArchAngelinAmerica said

    http://www.amptoons.com/blog/archives/2007/10/23/the-zionist-five-is-not-a-case-of-censorship/

    An excellent point is made in Comment #13 (David Schraub). Rather than steal his idea, I will just direct you to it should you wish to consider it.

  83. minsky said

    I disagree Steve. You don’t have the evidence to convince me, and I don’t know why you are convinced. The link discusses the five Israelis in greater detail than you are probably accustomed to. You can focus on only one phrase, quoted from their Israeli interview. Unless you speak Hebrew, and have access to the original, don’t bet the house on this. If for a second you leave out all your familiarity with false-flags and other speculation, the evidence to connect Israel to 911 is just that, one phrase from a langauge you don’t understand, nor have access to.

    Unconvincing. What about the mother’s testimony? Doesn’t bother you, that it doesn’t fit with your story?

    No evidence for 9-11, because there was absolutely no connection.

    ***

    I know, now you’ll talk about Israeli spy rings and art students. First off, doesn’t it strike you as odd, Isreali art students, supposedly implicated in 911, spying on the DEA. You know the DEA, don’t you? How do you connect this to 911?

    Second off, where is the connect with the hijackers?

    Third off. Even if there was a connect with hijackers, so what? Can’t you tell the difference between surveillance, and complicity. THe FBI had taps on half the ragheads involved in 911, does this make it complicit in 911? Or is there no difference for you between failure and success?

    I think you believe what you believe, because you assume that Israel and Mossad are capable of harming their friends. You don’t believe in their integrity, and honesty. Nor America’s and Israels familiarity with one another. This is a prejudice on your part. A prejudice sustained by very poor evidence.

  84. minsky said

    Grif.

    1) How do you explain the failure of the Bermuda Conference? What documents do you know, can you recommend.

    2) Do you buy Gilberts exculpation of the Allies? Didn’t know, didn’t bomb, couldn’t reach, wasn’t a priority.

    3) What is your info on the Joints snub of Weissmandel? How much rumor, how much documented? Still some docs missing, and not public access? Know what I am talking about?

    4) What’s your take on Loftu’s integrity, and anonymous sources in Secret War.

    5) What’s your background on this? Avocation or occupation?

    Respond maybe on my latest post or as preferred.
    http://oybay.wordpress.com/2007/10/24/1126/

  85. steve said

    You are wrong, Minsk. And, unlike me, you are clearly biased(Mossad – “honesty, integrity, FRIENDS(to friends spy on friends and pass state secrets-I don’t believe they do actually)” compare this to “by way of deception, thou shall wage war”.) Are you following the Rosen trial? I bet you are seeing as your so concerned about how friends treat each other…..

    I have looked at the evidence. And it is damning. I’ve read you’re piece – unsourced, irrelevant and missing most of the most important information.

    btw Two things.

    What am I supposed to be bothered about regarding the mother’s testimony?

    What phrase, assuming you do speak hebrew, am I missing that relieves those Israelies and the “classified information” as to why they were released without fully investigating them?

    ps They ‘moving company’ turned out to be a total sham….

  86. steve said

    Also – I’m not trying to convince you.

    I wish I didn’t have problems with it myself.

    It would be so much easier to believe that these hijackers pulled off what they did completely on their own after being under investigation for almost 5 years, and the luck of having an operation come off perfectly on the same day that by accident our defense forces were training for the exact same scenario – amazing.

    So you don’t think Israel would ever do anything to harm the U.S? Have they ever in the past?

    Do you think they have contingency plans for a nuclear attack on the U.S?

    And that occupation, the Lobby, war and more war were moral issues of integrity and honesty…

  87. steve said

    http://www.mediamonitors.net/mosaddeq37.html

    This, I think, is an excellent summary of the 9.11 conspiracy controversey…

  88. steve said

    You asked, Minsk,

    “Second off, where is the connect with the hijackers?

    Third off. Even if there was a connect with hijackers, so what? Can’t you tell the difference between surveillance, and complicity. THe FBI had taps on half the ragheads involved in 911, does this make it complicit in 911? Or is there no difference for you between failure and success? ” (Ragheads? Nice..)

    From the above source –

    But a cursory analysis of relevant facts certainly strongly suggests that the hijackers had some sort of high-level U.S. military connection. According to reports in Newsweek, the Washington Post and the New York Times, after September 11, U.S. military officials gave the FBI information “suggesting that five of the alleged hijackers received training in the 1990s at secure U.S. military installations.”[30] Newsweek has further elaborated that U.S. military training of foreign students occurs as a matter of routine, with the authorisation – and payment – of respective governments, clarifying in particular that with respect to training of Saudi pilots, “Training is paid for by Saudi Arabia.” The hijackers, we should note, were almost exclusively Saudi; 15 of the 19 hijackers were Saudis, mostly from wealthy families:

    “U.S. military sources have given the FBI information that suggests five of the alleged hijackers of the planes that were used in Tuesday’s terror attacks received training at secure U.S. military installations in the 1990s. Another of the alleged hijackers may have been trained in strategy and tactics at the Air War College in Montgomery, Ala., said another high-ranking Pentagon official. The fifth man may have received language instruction at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Tex. Both were former Saudi Air Force pilots who had come to the United States, according to the Pentagon source… NEWSWEEK visited the base early Saturday morning, where military police confirmed that the address housed foreign military flight trainees… It is not unusual for foreign nationals to train at U.S. military facilities. A former Navy pilot told NEWSWEEK that during his years on the base, ‘we always, always, always trained other countries’ pilots. When I was there two decades ago, it was Iranians. The shah was in power. Whoever the country du jour is, that’s whose pilots we train.’ Candidates begin with ‘an officer’s equivalent of boot camp,’ he said. ‘Then they would put them through flight training.’ The U.S. has a long-standing agreement with Saudi Arabia – a key ally in the 1990-91 gulf war – to train pilots for its National Guard. Candidates are trained in air combat on several Army and Navy bases. Training is paid for by Saudi Arabia.”[31]

    The U.S. government has attempted to deny the charges despite the name matches, alleging the existence of biographical discrepancies: “Officials stressed that the name matches may not necessarily mean the students were the hijackers because of discrepancies in ages and other personal data.” But measures appear to have been taken to block public scrutiny of these alleged discrepancies. On 16th September, news reports asserted that: “Officials would not release ages, country of origin or any other specific details of the three individuals.” This situation seems to have continued up to the time of writing. Even Senate inquiries into the matter have been studiously ignored by government law enforcement officials, who when pressed, have been unable to deny that the hijackers were training at secure U.S. military installations. When Senator Bill Nelson, for instance, in outrage asked the FBI whether the hijackers were being trained by the U.S. military, they refused to give a definitive answer, instead admitting that “they are trying to sort through something complicated and difficult.”[32]

    “Ragheads”.

    Yep….

  89. Grif said

    Minsky,

    1) How do you explain the failure of the Bermuda Conference? What documents do you know, can you recommend.

    The conference was doomed from the start. By April 1943 there was nothing that could have been realistically accomplished. Hitler was still very much the dictator of most of Europe, the Allies were losing the Battle of the Atlantic, the Pacific Theater was still touch and go, and the Normandy Landing was more than year off. Aside from asking Hitler to be nice, or threatening him, how could we have saved the Jews of Europe? Hitler was a psychopath, clearly appealing to his sense of humanity was a dead letter, and as far as threats go we were already at war with him. How much more threatening can one get? I believe FDR’s perceived indifference to the conference was due to his certain knowledge that the Allies at that point were entirely unable to stop the killing. Rosen’s book, “Saving the Jews” has a good section on this and he also provides an excellent bibliography.

    2) Do you buy Gilberts exculpation of the Allies? Didn’t know, didn’t bomb, couldn’t reach, wasn’t a priority.

    I take it you refer to the notion of bombing Auschwitz? Offhand, I can’t recall Gilbert’s argument (or even Gilbert – do you mean Martin Gilbert?), but my take on this is that feasibility and desirability of such an attempt is largely an artifact of 20-20 hindsight. We weren’t even able to reach that area with our bombers until relatively late in the war, by which time most of the killing had already been done. Then there is the question of what we would bomb and how and what we might hit. There were no smart bombs in WW2, pinpoint accuracy was a joke. Even with the Norden bombsight, under perfect field conditions (as opposed to lab tests) only 50% of the payload could be expected to fall within 1/2 mile of the target. 90% of the bombs could be expected to miss the target altogether. To counter this the Allies developed Area Bombing, which entailed saturating the entire area in hopes of hitting what they were aiming at. Needless to say, if we had attempted to bomb, say, the gas chamber or the crematorium or the railroad tracks it would have been far more likely that we would have missed entirely and hit the prisoner’s barracks instead, or hit nothing at all. If we had hit the barracks we could have killed thousands, many of whom might otherwise have survived the war, thus doing Hitler’s work for him and giving him a propaganda coup. And frankly, I suspect this is a matter of damned if you do, damned if you don’t. If we had inadvertently killed thousands in the camp we might well have been accused of anti-semitism after the war by the likes of Loftus, et. al. The Allies decided that the only way to save the Jews and other victims of Hitler was by defeating him as quickly as possible. I don’t believe it was a decision made lightly, and after the fall of Poland there may have been no other feasible option.

    3) What is your info on the Joints snub of Weissmandel? How much rumor, how much documented? Still some docs missing, and not public access? Know what I am talking about?

    I don’t have any sources that are not readily available. Lenni Brenner is a good start. Weissmandel himself wrote a book which I believe is still available online in pdf. The sources I’ve encountered and which account for most of what I’ve read on the net seem sound. I once had a copy of Weissmandel’s book but I see checking my files that I don’t anymore. To my lights the snub of the Jewish Agency in Switzerland was not out of line with general Zionist policy. I tell you this, on the DVD of the Cooper Union debate concerning the Mearsheimer/Walt fracas, Shlomo Ben Ami takes a digression and describes Ben Gurion as “Leninist, not in his politics, but in his determination.” This I believe is dead-on and can be said of the Zionist movement in general. They wanted what they wanted, and sentimental concerns were to be discarded if they did not appear to serve that end. The letter from the Agency to Weissmandel states this clearly:
    http://www.fantompowa.net/Flame/weissmandel_lublin.htm

    Yitzhak Greenbaum of the Jewish Agency reiterated it after the war: “When they asked me, couldn’t you give money out of the United Jewish Appeal funds for the rescue of Jews in Europe, I said, ‘NO!’ and I say again ‘NO!’ . . . one should resist this wave which pushes the Zionist activities to secondary importance.”

    In short, I don’t beleive it to be rumor at all. Too much contemporary evidence and too many angry Jews. I believe this ideology still animates Israeli policy, foreign and domestic.

    4) What’s your take on Loftu’s integrity, and anonymous sources in Secret War.

    Loftus, to my lights, is completely out of his mind. The general thesis of “The Secret War against the Jews” is about as worthwhile as that of “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.” It’s a paranoid’s wet dream. No footnotes, no sources except for those that remain anonymous (for no particular reason that I can fathom), bizarre charges (Every Jew in the world is being spied upon by Britain? The US plotted against Israel in 67 and 73? The Liberty was spying for the Arabs? And many many more). There are so many instances of outright false assertions, half-truths, and twisted logic that it is a waste of anyone’s time to bother combing through them all.

    5) What’s your background on this? Avocation or occupation?

    Well, I am a writer, but my opinions on this particular area lie more to avocation, but if I don’t watch myself it could turn into an unpaid occupation.

  90. Grif said

    I just realized I misspoke concerning Loftus. He does have footnotes. It’s just that all too often they lead to a blank wall: “Confidential source{s}.” He leaves the reader with no way to check his sources, their sanity or their veracity.

  91. minsky said

    Yes, Loftus always has footnotes, perenially anonyous.

    ***

    So you haven’t read Weismandel? You see, there are documents, from Switzerland. Untouched. Because quotes from Ben-Gurion and Greenbaum, simply don’t suffice. Not enough evidence, at least not for me. Jabotinsky really did make the rounds after all.

    ***
    I disagree somewhat with Rosen and yes, Martin Gilbert. Its whitewash. For too long we’ve heard the story that “no one knew”. Government agencies are still washing their hands, witness Eavesdroping on Hell. I don’t buy it.

    two points. Could rail links to Auschwitz have been bombed. Absolutely. Bombers were within range of many camps by 1944, and a minimum of 400,000 lives could have been saved. Weismandel comments how they flew over his head.

    The reason, I most suspect the Allies did not stop the genocide, is because they couldn’t care less about about communists, Jews, homosexuals, etc.

    Otherwise you simply cannot explain why knowing full well about the camps, they did not issue any statements acknowledging them. When Soviet footage of Auschwitz became available, they gasped.

    I don’t buy it. It wasn’t 20/20 hindsight. Also, why don’t apply the 20/20 critique to the Zionists, I am puzzled. You readily agree to Zionist failures and the Holocaust, but citing only Rosen, you defend FDR. I don’t share this perspective. Overall, America saved less Jews than Switzerland, or England. Or so say the statistics.

    For the longest of times we’ve been brainwashed to believe no one knew, no one understood. The Bermuda conference is even seldon discussed. I cannot simply agree to Rosens reading of affairs. It does’t make sense to me.

    There was way too much colaboration by US elites with Nazi germany, at a time when Jews had to deal with quotas and couldn’t be admited to clubs in America. The mindset of America and the British royals, is the best explanation for why Hitler’s killing machine ran as smoothly as it could.

    ***
    Loftus. I am not sure I agree with you. He pursued Nazi’s accross the USA, and some of his work has been vindicated. Especially the more recent material on Prescott Bush. Not only are accusations of collaboration entirely true, they did not stop in 1943. I n as much the Protocols of Zion were plagiarized from a rather briliant book by Maurice Joly, which had nothign to do with Jews, so too Loftus has some insight.

    Why are you sure the LIberty didn’t collect
    Sigint on Isreal?

    **

    What do you write?

  92. minsky said

    Steve.
    Yes, friends spy on friends. France spies on the US, Japan spies on the US, and Scotland Yard is free to investigate Steve Wynn by snooping about in Las Vegas.

    In the text you quote, one government stands out – SAudi Arabia.

    Read more about the country and its holy relationsihp with the US. You will quickly lose interest in Israel.

    As for Mossad’s motto. So what? Find me mottos of five comparative agencies, and then tell me if its stands out. Compared to a few others The Mossad motto is at least honest. Take the “intelligence” in the word CIA… a joke.

    ***

    Look, basically there is a conspiratorial view of history, and then there is history. Conspiracies do not understand simple concepts like Error, Mistake, Lack of Coordination, Lack of Capacity, or Poor Policy.

    That said, did Al Qaida have insights into US OpSec? Obviously. Viz Ali Mohammed, and a slew of other double triple crossers.

    ***

    I agree, there are questions to be answered about 911. But all evidence indicates that answers are to be found in the Arabian Desert.

  93. Grif said

    “So you haven’t read Weismandel? You see, there are documents, from Switzerland. Untouched. Because quotes from Ben-Gurion and Greenbaum, simply don’t suffice. Not enough evidence, at least not for me. Jabotinsky really did make the rounds after all.”

    I did read Weismandel, what I said was that I no longer had the book on my computer. I wanted to give you the title. If there are unread docs in Switz. then I’d love to read them, but the quotes from Gurion and Greenbaum are only a few of many more in the public record. And what do you mean about Jabotinsky making the rounds?

    “I disagree somewhat with Rosen and yes, Martin Gilbert. Its whitewash. For too long we’ve heard the story that “no one knew”. Government agencies are still washing their hands, witness Eavesdroping on Hell. I don’t buy it.”

    Nothing I wrote indicated any belief on my part that “no one knew,” nor does Rosen believe that. I can’t speak for Gilbert. It is clear that they knew. What is not clear is what they could do about it.

    “two points. Could rail links to Auschwitz have been bombed. Absolutely. Bombers were within range of many camps by 1944, and a minimum of 400,000 lives could have been saved. Weismandel comments how they flew over his head.”

    The area around rail links could well have been bombed – and repaired overnight as many indeed were. How can you assert that 400,000 lives could have been saved? Even assuming that the rails were not repaired overnight or even in a week, what would stop the Nazis from killing whoever they pleased right where they stood? They certainly did exactly that to millions in the Soviet Union. Another consideration: the toll of these bomber raids was very high in lost crews and destroyed planes. How much effort and at what cost do you divert these precious assets to missions with such a highly uncertain outcome? Particularly when it could be argued, and no doubt was, that more lives might be saved by destroying the Nazi war machine as quickly as possible? A terrible arithmetic but perhaps unavoidable at the time.

    “The reason, I most suspect the Allies did not stop the genocide, is because they couldn’t care less about about communists, Jews, homosexuals, etc.”

    I would not believe this for a moment. There is no evidence save one late interview with John McCloy that indicates FDR was ever approached on the idea. McCloy first denied it then later said he had spoke with FDR about the idea, accordingly he says this was FDR’s response: “Then he [McCloy] said the President was opposed to the idea because it would have done no good. The President made it clear, McCloy said, that the US “would have been accused of destroying Auschwitz, bombing these innocent people . . . FDR was irate at the idea of bombing Jews in the camps to make a gesture.”

    “Otherwise you simply cannot explain why knowing full well about the camps, they did not issue any statements acknowledging them. When Soviet footage of Auschwitz became available, they gasped.”

    Who the hell would not gasp? Everytime I see that footage I still gasp. Knowing of killings is one thing seeing the actual staggering toll, which many, Jews and gentiles alike, had trouble comprehending for the sheer insanity of it, is another. Your assertion that there was no acknowledgment is plain wrong. on Aug. 21, 1942 FDR warned the Germans they would face “fearful retribution” for the “mass killings.” Front page headline in the NY Times read: “President warns Atrocities of Axis will be Avenged.” On Oct. 7 he told the Nazis that he was aware the “commission of these crimes continues” and that it was “the intention of this government . . that the criminals would receive swift and sure punishment.” By November of the same year there was absolutely no question and the Sumner Welles and FDR informed Rabbi Wise and asked him to make it public, with their confirmation. The result was a wave of anti-German demonstrations across the country. December 2 was declared a national Day Of Mourning. The Times denounced the Nazi’s “homicidal mania.” NBC broadcast a memorial service to the nation and services were held across the country. On December 17, 1942, the United Nations Declaration on Jewish Massacres was issued. Signed by the US, Great Britain, the Soviet Union and the free governments of eight occupied nations it denounced “in the strongest possible terms this bestial policy of cold-blooded extermination.” It condemned the German gov’t’s “intention to exterminate the Jewish people in Europe . . . None of those taken away are ever heard of again . . . The infirm are left to die of exposure and starvation or are deliberately massacred in mass executions.” This was reported widely in the American press and committed the Allies in the eyes of the world to prosecute war crimes against European Jewry.

    “I don’t buy it. It wasn’t 20/20 hindsight. Also, why don’t apply the 20/20 critique to the Zionists, I am puzzled. You readily agree to Zionist failures and the Holocaust, but citing only Rosen, you defend FDR. I don’t share this perspective. Overall, America saved less Jews than Switzerland, or England. Or so say the statistics.”

    Please explain to me then how anyone could have saved the Jews of Europe once the war was on? How could we have spirited away the Polish Jews once Poland was firmly occupied by Germany? Not even the Soviets could save the millions of their own once they were behind Nazi lines. Somehow a notion that we were all powerful at that time appears here. We nearly lost the goddamn war. If Hitler had not invaded the Soviet Union we might well have lost. Before Pearl Harbor our military was one of the smallest of the Western powers. We were fighting on two fronts and could not even rescue our own soldiers on Bataan and Corrigedor, who held out for 90 days – the largest surrender of American troops in history. I defend FDR because the record is clear- he cared deeply about what Hitler was doing and had been working to aid Britain and France long before we got into the war. American military personnel were dying in this war well before Pearl Harbor. Ever hear of the Reuben James? Lend-lease began before Pearl Harbor. FDR was no anti-Semite. He worked to save Jews and to extend all help he could before the war began, but was limited by a isolationist Congress that was frightened of a large influx of refugees while we had 25% unemployment. The quotas did not just apply to Jews but to all immigrants. But thanks to the efforts of FDR half of all immigrants to the US from 1938 to 1940 were Jewish. The quota for German (entirely reserved for Jews at FDR’s insistence) was 25,957, the highest quota for any country except Britain. Remember that of all the Jews murdered in the Holocaust, 4,565,000 were Polish and Russian and 125,000 were German. Just how were we, or anyone, to rescue them? As it was we accepted twice as many refugees as the rest of the world combined. In 1938 and 39 FDR even tried a ransom scheme through the IGCR to save European Jews, the Rublee Plan, which failed only because the Germans finally refused to let the Jews leave.

    “The Bermuda conference is even seldon discussed. I cannot simply agree to Rosens reading of affairs. It does’t make sense to me.”

    What doesn’t make sense? You believe that in 1943 when we could barely get a convoy to Europe without losing half of it to U Boats, when the Germans in North Africa had just kicked our asses in the Kasserine Pass and our allies wondered if we could stand up at all, you believe that somehow we could have swept into Eastern Europe and saved the Jews of Poland?

    “There was way too much colaboration by US elites with Nazi germany, at a time when Jews had to deal with quotas and couldn’t be admited to clubs in America. The mindset of America and the British royals, is the best explanation for why Hitler’s killing machine ran as smoothly as it could.”

    Do not confuse the greed of American businessmen with genocidal intent. The relatively mild anti-Semitism of “restricted” country clubs does not translate into a desire for mass murder. Yes, there was instances of vile collaboration with the Nazis. Ford motors, IBM, General Motors, and others should have been exposed far more than they were (including Bush’s granddaddy). But don’t forget also that these very same people hated FDR’s guts. In 1934, the Liberty League, led by DuPont and the Morgan interests were exposed in a plot to overthrow FDR. They hated the ground he walked on, believed he was turning the country over to the communists and that they were the rightful rulers of America. FDR’s reign was one long battle with the industrial elites. They are not one and the same.

    “Loftus. I am not sure I agree with you. He pursued Nazi’s accross the USA, and some of his work has been vindicated. . . In as much the Protocols of Zion were plagiarized from a rather briliant book by Maurice Joly, which had nothign to do with Jews, so too Loftus has some insight.”

    His other work may indeed have merit, but his thesis in the Secret War is preposterous, to say the least. You could say that elements of the Protocols were lifted from Joly’s satire on Napoleon, but I don’t see much insight concerning Jews. What insights do you reckon Loftus has concerning a world-wide ages-long conspiracy against the Jews?

    “Why are you sure the LIberty didn’t collect Sigint on Isreal?”

    From every account I’ve read, including those of the crew and George Ball, of the Johnson administration, there were no Hebrew linguists aboard. What we were doing is monitoring soviet communications in the area. The notion that were relaying info to Egypt to insure the destruction of Israel is insane. For Christ’s sake, we were instrumental in the creation of Israel, shoved the plan through the UN and instantly recognized Israel in conjunction with Ben Gurion’s announcement of statehood. In 1967 Americans were firmly behind Israel and saw Egypt as allied with the Soviets. The Egyptians were claiming we were in cahoots with Israel. In 1967 the entire country was cheering for Israel, including Congress. The notion that we were out to destroy Israel is revisionism worthy of a David Irving.

    What do you write?

    One book on the Red Scare, a novel in progress, some labor history.

  94. minsky said

    Grif are you not interested in leaving a comment on my latest post?

    And Maoz? You asked to clarify my position on Zionism. You didn’t notice that I did?

    http://oybay.wordpress.com/2007/10/24/1126/

    ***

    I profoundly, profoundly disagree with you on the Holocaust. Profoundly.

    We can kick Zionism about, but let’s not let others off the hook please. Please. That’s prejudice.

    My disagreement is simple. Just like Martin Gilbert, and other apologists, you commit a simple mistake.

    The Holocaust was not, and is not about Jews. Solely about Jews. nearly 12 million people lost their lives in the camps alone. Of these, the majority comprised Communists, Jews, Gypsies, homosexuals, and other opponents of the regime. When you, like Gilbert dowplay the possibility of action it’s based on the “well,we can’t make an exeption for the Jews.”

    So the argument is invalid. Their inaction was about 12 million people. Rwanda, Gabon, Congo. Just a bunch of niggers.

    Truth is, Allies couldn’t make an exception for pinkos, kikes, and queers. That’s the truth. You had Kennedy and Harriman conveying info from Europe via UK. Racist pro-Nazi bourgeois.

    There are soldiers, diplomats, historians who disagree with the notion that the camps were not preventable. If you recall Weissmandel, and ten others like him, you will change your mind.

    The Allies had time enough to waste Dresden, sortie after sortie, bomb bomb bomb. More than 70 per cent of all camps were within reach. Many were fighting for humanity, and not just against the Nazis. The same cannot be said for Dulles, Donnovan, Forestal, Bush, IBM, GM, Rockefellers. You want genocidal intent? How about a history of supporting Hitler?

    Do you seriously not see the historical connection between the march on Roosevelt and Judeo-Bolshevism?!

    Do you seriously believe that the Dearborn Independent was different from Alfred Rosemberg? Do you seriously believe Hearst pro-Nazi propaganda was inocuous?

    How do you explain years of cover-ups of collaboration, of abeting, of goading in American history books? How do you explain that almost no americans have ever heard of this collaboration?

    How do you explain Bush getting off scot free?

    Genocidal intent, that’s how.

    You are projecting your humanist values back on 1920. Absolute erroror. The White race, and the Mission and Herbert Spencer were nasty, brutish, and not far from Pol Pot. We had centuries of bigotry, masscares, of genocide behind our belt. Years of it. We were no different from the barbarians around us. WWII was decades away from the Civil Rights movement.

    Oh the West gasped all right, they gasped, while We Shall Never Die did the theatre circuit, while Orthodox Rabbi after Orthodox rabbi denounced Zionits, and Alied inaction in Europe.

    No the Nazi’s wouldn’t have rebuilt the rail links, because by then they didn’t have the resources! Yes, more than thousands would have volunteered, had the media not covered the genocides up. We know this story, it happens over and over. Just get the media on it, and the volunteers come in droves. The US bourgeoise knew this. Knew it damn well.

    The Allies deliberately did nothing. Deliberately! When the Red Cross got involved, or Vatican and Switzerland, or the resistance in Italy and France, how many Jews were saved?! Hundreds of thousands! Why 400,000 million? Because that’s the last phase, the Hungarian Jewish transfer of end of 1944. Why a minimum, because the greatest number of Holocaust victims are 1944-45.

    Did the Allies go about making statements “Hitler’s camps… Hitler’s camps.”?

    Of course not! What they did, is gasp. Gasp, gasp.

    Never will I buy this lie. You accuse the Zionists, but you don’t have the guts to say anything about the rest.

    Trust me Grif. Like Gilbert, you just repeat why it couldn’t be done. This is fatalism, and an intellectual choice. As Isaiah Berlin put it, you can conceive of history as inevitability, or you can imagine freedom. You chose the former.

    I don’t buy it, and I am willing to get technical if you like. We can go detail by detail, accusation by accusation, and let’s see who is more convincing?

    Or you can just admit, that you have no more reason to believe it was impossible, than I have to believe it was, and we can leave it at that.

    Frankly, if we dont’t see eye to eye, why don’t you give me your opinion on my Zionist critique at: http://oybay.wordpress.com/2007/10/24/1126/

    ***

    So what are sone if the names of your books?

  95. Grif said

    Minsky,

    You are all over the map. Half the time I’m not even sure who you are talking to or what about.

    I don’t have the time or the interest to parse your last post and figure out just what the hell you are trying to say. You can call all I said a pack of lies, but I note all you respond with is a flurry of wild assertions. You want to believe that the “Allies couldn’t make an exception for pinkos, kikes, and queers” and that’s what the issue is all about, then please go ahead.

    Don’t mind me, I’m outta here.

  96. minsky said

    Quitter. You’ve read one book from Rosen, and then you’re outta here? No staying power. Remember, most people on this blog, are more than happy to have you leave… they only wish I would follow. Sad.

  97. Oyster said

    Minsky:

    Here’s one of Grif’s books.

  98. [...] except for Zionist art, also known in intellectual circles as “that Jewish stuff”. Zionist artists are out. Himmelberger Gallery, a well-known art gallery located in San Francisco’s tony Union Square, [...]

  99. [...] published columnist, Ariel frequently writes about the future of Zionism and the Jewish People. Alan Kaufman is a San Francisco-based author and artist. His recent books are the widely acclaimed JewBoy: A [...]

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