Sunday, September 3, 2006

"Whitewashing" the record on the Holocaust?

In a new book about the life of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, author Robert N. Rosen claims that FDR did everything he could to stop the Holocaust. Believing that is like saying Ayers Rock will lift itself from the middle of Australia and dump itself somewhere in the Indian Ocean causing a tsunami to end all tsunamis. It is an utter denial of historical facts.

The facts are simple. The US -- indeed, the whole Alliance against the Nazis -- didn't do a single thing to help Jews and other people interred in the death camps until after they were liberated and even then it came as a shock to fighting soldiers they even existed at all. The MSM in the West knew full well of the existence of the camps and said nothing, because they knew most of their readers were anti-Semitic even though they were otherwise against Hitler. The New York Times, of all publications, only printed the story on page 20 when the first reports came out. Even after it became widespread public knowledge, many people refused to believe the massacre had happened and was still happening because either they didn't think it was possible for civilized people to engage in such conduct, or otherwise "they" got what they deserved because of who "they" were, i.e. they weren't "Christians."

During my visit to the Holocaust Museum in Montréal, I saw an original letter from a group called the Canadian Order of Daughters. It was a letter to Mackenzie King, the Prime Minister of Canada during the war, urging him not to accept Jews as refugees from Europe simply because they were Jewish and would be a "plague" on Canada. Bowing to them and to general public opinion, several ships were turned away from Halifax. The passengers headed right back to Europe and directly into the death camps. So in effect, we were in bed with Hitler even as we fought a war against him.

Even after most churches took a second look at themselves after the war and finally repudiated anti-Semitism, many if not of their worshippers dug in their heels and continued to believe it was their duty as Christians to hate Jews. While most of us are much more enlightened nowadays and see quite the opposite, there are still scumbags like Hutton and Mel Gibson who continue to persist in the old beliefs. Engaging in a debate and taking a fresh look at conventional wisdom is always a good thing; but in the face of overwhelming documentation gathered by the Nazis themselves the record is indisputable. The West did squat to save the Jews. And Eugenio Pacelli (Pius XII), rather than excommunicating Hitler and Mussolini, coddled them, and did nowhere near enough to save as many Jews in Italy as he should have (although he did save some).

Free speech is free speech. But facts are facts. The Holocaust happened, our forebears did nothing to stop it, and their blood is on our hands.

(Incidentally, the WaPo article linked at the top is a good read. It also mentions a controversial new documentary by televangelist D. James Kennedy and his rather twisted view about evolution leading to the Holocaust. For the record, eugenics, on which Nazism largely rested [and which several Canadian provinces actually practiced right through the1970s by sterilizing mentally challenged persons], was a perversion of evolution and had little if anything to do with Charles Darwin's quite faith based approach to the origin of the human race.)

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