Monday, January 22, 2007

The debt we owe to Deborah Lipstadt

Deborah Lipstadt has written a very important commentary on Jimmy Carter and his book on the Palestinians (I won’t link to it at Amazon as Amazon has been playing peculiar games with it, presumably in order to suppress its sale).  Lipstadt, a woman who until now has been famous only for having all of David Irving’s money, expressly makes the connection between Israeli treatment of the Palestinians and what was done to the Jewish people in the 1930’s and 1940’s.  This argument usually hides in the weeds.  It is the real basis behind all defenses of Israeli actions against the Palestinians, as well as many of the peculiarities of Israeli exceptionalism, such as Israel’s unique ability to shelter international gangsters on the basis that they are Jews, or Israel’s unique right to make peremptory attacks against other countries on the basis that there might be a possible threat against the state of the Jewish people.  This doctrine has now been extended, in the case of Iran, to allow for peremptory attacks even when there is no threat against the Jewish people.

In Lipstadt’s view, which is the view shared by all Jewish defenders of Israel, Carter is wrong for failing to emphasize the Holocaust in a book about what Israel is doing to the Palestinians today.  This lack of logic from Lipstadt would be the stuff of comedy if it did not form the basis for all the atrocities that Israel commits.  Most apologists for Israel are too smart to put it in so many words, so we owe a bid debt of gratitude to Lipstadt for being so fucking stupid as to let the cat out of the bag. In fact, I think many people sympathetic to Israel don’t really realize the basis for the chip on Israel’s shoulder as they can’t bring themselves to believe that the basis could be something that is so insane.

The bigger picture is that many Jews feel that the Holocaust gives Jews, and by extension the Jewish state, a permanent ‘Get Out Of Jail Free’ card.  The world stood by and let horrible things happen to the Jews, so the Jews have a unique right to obtain retribution in whatever way they see fit.  One of the main ways they have seen fit to obtain justice is to grab themselves a country.  No non-Jew has the moral right to complain about it, as every non-Jew inherits the guilt for the Holocaust.  Thus, Jimmy Carter has no right to criticize the Jewish state for what it is doing to the Palestinians.  Despite the fact the Palestinians had nothing to do with the Holocaust (in fact hardly anyone alive today had anything to do with the Holocaust), they also have no moral right to criticize what is being done to them.  This is the kind of reasoning which makes sense to young children, and many criminals (“I have a right to rob banks because I had a sad childhood’), but doesn’t make any sense to the rest of us.

One of the peculiarities of the Jewish post-Holocaust experience is the fact that there is a certain sexual frisson created by fantasies of how the world will again conspire to destroy the Jewish people (and seeing the Holocaust everywhere can have some amusing consequences).  Benny Morris (of all people) is obviously getting off on describing how the Jews will be destroyed by the inevitable nuclear attack from Iran, while the rest of the world secretly applauds.  It’s Jewish masochistic porn.  Of course, Morris isn’t an idiot, and is perfectly aware that Iran hasn’t threatened Israel’s existence, has no nuclear weapons, and has no foreseeable chance of having nuclear weapons, while Israeli leaders have directly threatened Iran and Israel has such weapons, so Morris’ fantasy is closer to sadistic porn rather than masochistic porn.  Morris is following the same reasoning as Lipstadt.  A Jew is entitled to write propaganda advocating an attack on innocent civilians living in a country that poses no threat to Israel.  Why?  Because of the Holocaust!