Clippings and Commentary Tue, 08 May 2018 12:49:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Clippings and Commentary 32 32 108374260 German neo-Nazi, 89, on the lam after failing to appear for jail term Mon, 07 May 2018 22:48:18 +0000 BERLIN — A Holocaust survivors’ group is urging German authorities to intensify their search for a notorious neo-Nazi who did not show up for her prison sentence.

The International Auschwitz Committee said Sunday it hopes that Ursula Haverbeck, 89, who has been sentenced to two years in prison for incitement, will soon be found.

Haverbeck was sentenced last year for repeatedly denying the Holocaust — a crime in Germany. She was supposed to start her prison sentence on Wednesday, in the town of Bielefeld.

Committee member Christoph Heubner told the German news agency dpa, “one can only hope that… police are looking for her with high pressure.”

Local paper Westfalen-Blatt reported that Haverbeck’s home in Vlotho in central Germany seemed to have been empty for days, with mail piling up in front of the door.

Ursula Haverbeck was sentenced at a Berlin district court in October 2017, for saying, at a January 2016 event in the German capital, that the Holocaust did not take place and that there were no gas chambers at the infamous Auschwitz death camp. In closing arguments at her trial, she again denied the Holocaust, prompting another conviction.

Source: Associated Press (Breitbart Jerusalem)

It’s Jew vs. Jew as Congress weighs a new definition for anti-Semitism Wed, 08 Nov 2017 23:38:06 +0000 WASHINGTON (JTA) — Jewish and pro-Israel leaders exchanged heated remarks at a congressional hearing on how to define anti-Semitism.

Tuesday’s hearing of the House Judiciary Committee took up a bill that would, among other things, define as anti-Semitism language that “demonizes” Israel.

Of the nine witnesses who addressed the committee, five said the language was necessary to stem anti-Semitism on campuses. Four argued it infringes on freedom of speech.


At issue is the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act, which would codify the State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism. The proposed addition to federal anti-discrimination statutes would apply to Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which addresses institutions, including universities, that receive federal funding. A version has passed in the Senate.

The language, in its current State Department formulation, includes a section that defines as anti-Semitism language that “demonizes” Israel. It breaks down the term “demonizes” as “[u]sing the symbols and images associated with classic anti-Semitism to characterize Israel or Israelis, drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis, blaming Israel for all interreligious or political tensions.”


Advocating for the proposed language were top officials of the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee, the Simon Wiesenthal Center and Christians United for Israel, as well as Paul Clement, a former U.S. solicitor general.


Barry Trachtenberg, a Jewish studies professor at Wake Forest University in North Carolina, seemed to accuse proponents of the legislation of bad faith.

“They are part of a persistent campaign to thwart scholarship, debate and activism critical of Israel,” he said.


Cooper seemed visibly uncomfortable crowded next to Trachtenberg at the witness table, who kept staring at him. Cooper kept emphasizing that the Jewish leadership in its entirety backed the bill, seeming to sideline Stern’s organizational affiliation. At one point Cooper’s insistence that the entire Jewish community backed the bill drew a correction from Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., who produced a letter from J Street U, the liberal Middle Eastern lobby’s campus affiliate, opposing the bill.


Source: Ron Kampeas, Ron Kampeas, Jewish Telegraph Agency

Civil society must step up to counter hate Fri, 27 Oct 2017 22:31:05 +0000
  • Canada needs a professional organization to track, document and counter right-wing extremism and racist groups.
  • Right-wing extremism is Canada’s number one domestic threat, but we have no organization to track and counter the more than 100 active hate groups in Canada. With no anti-racist watchdog organization, hate groups have had some success in putting on a façade of respectability, and have become part of our political landscape.

    We need three things. […] Third, and most importantly, Canada needs a professional organization to track, document and counter right-wing extremism and racist groups.


    Whether it was the threat posed in the early 1960s by the re-emergence of a Canadian Nazi party under the leadership of John William Beattie and David Stanley, or the attempts by Holocaust deniers Ernst Zundel and high school teacher Jim Keegstra to resuscitate Nazism, the Canadian Jewish community was there — documenting it and fighting back.


    Today, extreme right-wing groups are smarter. They say they aren’t racist, they’re alt-right — and now that everybody knows alt-right means racist, they’ll find a new term. In Canada, they call themselves patriots and nationalists. They’ve successfully put on a façade of respectability and made their extreme views more socially acceptable. There are groups recruiting in our universities and finding allies in advocacy organizations and mainstream politics. It’s past time to expose them.

    Once again, Canada needs its civil society to step up to investigate and counter hate groups. Silence and ignorance are no longer options.

    Bernie M. Farber is the former CEO of the Canadian Jewish Congress. Today he advocates and writes on human rights and social justice issues. Follow him on Twitter @berniefarber. Evan Balgord is a freelance journalist and a researcher of right-wing extremism in Canada. Follow him on Twitter @ebalgord.

    Source: Toronto Star,

    Who Killed the Holocaust? Wed, 19 Apr 2017 21:20:50 +0000 […]

    […] Holocaust fatigue may be setting in. […]


    Unfortunately, progressive American Jewry isn't alone in politicizing suffering. The state of Israel is guilty of the same crime. Why is every gentile political leader and celebrity who visits the Jewish homeland paraded to Yad Vashem, Israel's major Holocaust Museum? The message that's conveyed is that the primary justification for the existence of the modern Jewish state is the Holocaust, as if the Jewish people's religious, cultural, historic, and linguistic connections to the land are inconvenient truths that will chip away at the victim narrative.

    Source: Harry Ben-Zvi and Gidon Ben-Zvi,

    ‘Amazon should stop selling Holocaust denial books’ Thu, 23 Feb 2017 22:26:02 +0000 Yad Vashem has called on Amazon to remove Holocaust denial books from its online store, accusing the Internet retail giant of facilitating the spread of hate speech.

    The appeal came in the form of a letter penned by Yad Vashem’s director of the libraries, Dr. Robert Rozett, to the CEO of Amazon, Jeff Bezos.

    “It has been clear for many years now that Holocaust denial literature is freely available for purchase over Amazon. Many of the items appear with glowing readers’ reviews and recommendations for further reading in the same vein,” Rozett wrote, attaching to his message several examples of rave reviews of books titled True History of the Holocaust. Did six million really die? and The Hoax of the Twentieth Century: The Case against the Presumed Extermination of European Jewry.


    “But the best thing would be if they would sign up not to sell this material,” Rozett emphasized, adding that while his letter was sent out to Amazon, its message applies universally.

    Source: Tamara Zieve, Jerusalem Post

    Holocaust denial and anti-Semitic books are being sold on Amazon Sun, 12 Feb 2017 22:29:18 +0000 Amazon has come in for criticism after it emerged that the retail giant is selling self-published books promoting Holocaust denial and far-right propaganda.

    Several books with titles such as The Myth of Extermination of the Jews and Holocaust: The Greatest Lie Ever Told are available to buy on the online retailer, with some receiving four star reviews.

    Several editions are available, in paperback and on Kindle, of the notorious 1974 pamphlet Did Six Million Really Die? by a member of the British National Front.

    And another book, The Six Million: Fact or Fiction? by Peter Winter, was available for sale via Amazon Germany, where Holocaust denial is a crime.

    The titles were also available for sale in Italy and France, where penalties are imposed for denying the genocide that killed more than six million Jewish people during the Second World War.


    The books were removed from the online store in countries where Holocaust denial is illegal after Amazon was contacted by The Sunday Times but they remain available in the UK where there are no legal restrictions.

    Many of the books on the site have received low ratings with scathing comments, but many others have been praised as shedding light on the “truth.”


    Source: Caroline Mortimer, The Independent

    New study casts doubt on theory Anne Frank was betrayed Sat, 17 Dec 2016 23:33:46 +0000 THE HAGUE, Netherlands — Anne Frank may not have been betrayed to Nazi occupiers, but captured by chance.

    A new study published Friday by the Anne Frank House museum in Amsterdam says that despite decades of research there is no conclusive evidence that the Jewish diarist and her family were betrayed to the Netherlands’ German occupiers during World War II, leading to their arrest and deportation.

    Ronald Leopold, Executive Director of the Anne Frank House museum, said in a statement Friday that new research by the museum “illustrates that other scenarios should also be considered.”

    One possible theory is that the Aug. 4, 1944, raid that led to Anne’s arrest could have been part of an investigation into illegal labor or falsified ration coupons at the canal-side house where she and other Jews hid for just over two years.


    The new research points to two men who worked in the building on Amsterdam’s Prinsengracht canal and dealt in illegal ration cards. They were arrested earlier in 1944 and subsequently released, Dutch records show. The arrests also are mentioned in Anne’s diary.

    Such arrests were reported to an investigation division based in The Hague and the report says that, “During their day-to-day activities, investigators from this department often came across Jews in hiding by chance.”

    Another possibility raised by the report is that the raid was part of an investigation into people being allowed to work to prevent them being called up as forced labor and sent to Germany.

    “A company where people were working illegally and two sales representatives were arrested for dealing in ration coupons obviously ran the risk of attracting the attention of the authorities,” the report says.

    It adds that, “The possibility of betrayal has of course not been entirely ruled out by this, nor has any relationship between the ration coupon fraud and the arrest been proven,” and says further research is necessary.

    “Clearly, the last word about that fateful summer day in 1944 has not yet been said,” it adds.

    Source: Associated Press via

    Court rules Nazi-era stolen art hoard to go to Swiss museum Thu, 15 Dec 2016 23:30:26 +0000 MUNICH (GERMANY) (AFP) – A German court Thursday threw out a challenge to the will of collector Cornelius Gurlitt, clearing the way for a spectacular Nazi-era art hoard found in his home to go to a Swiss museum.

    The superior regional court in the southern city of Munich ruled that collection, including pieces by Cezanne, Beckmann, Holbein, Delacroix and Munch, could be inherited by the Museum of Fine Arts in Bern.

    Gurlitt died in May 2014 aged 81 and named the museum as the sole heir of the hundreds of works, found in his cluttered Munich apartment and valued at millions of euros.


    Gurlitt, described in media reports as an eccentric recluse, hid the paintings, drawings and sketches in his Munich home for decades and another 239 works at a house he owned in Salzburg, Austria.

    His father was one of four art dealers during the Third Reich tasked by the Nazis with selling art stolen from Jews or confiscated as “degenerate” works.

    Although German authorities discovered the collection during a tax probe in 2012, they kept it under wraps for more than a year until it came to light in a magazine article.

    Gurlitt struck an agreement with the German government in April 2014 stipulating that any works that were plundered by the Nazis would be returned to their rightful owners and the Bern museum said it would honour that wish.

    But the heirs of collectors stripped of their assets by the Nazis, many of whom would later be killed in the death camps, have complained that restitution has been woefully slow in coming.

    German Culture Minister Monika Gruetters welcomed the court’s ruling, saying it provided needed “clarity” on the fate of the collection and would allow a planned joint exhibition of the works by the Bern museum and the Bundeskunsthalle in Bonn next year to take place.

    “This decision will help us to continue to clarify the provenance of the trove quickly and transparently,” she added.

    Source: Breitbart Jerusalem

    Italian schoolchildren put Hitler’s Mein Kampf in top ten favorite books Sun, 11 Dec 2016 23:25:56 +0000 TEL AVIV – A survey by Italy’s Education Ministry showed that students at Italian high schools all over the country included Nazi leader Adolf Hitler’s manifesto Mein Kampf in their list of their top ten favorite books.

    Alessandro Fusacchia from the Education Ministry said the choice was a “particularly nasty case,” The Local reported. He added that the vote was not counted since students had been asked to pick from books by Italian authors that were published after 2000.

    “We are looking into it, but we are convinced that it was not a bad interpretation of the request, but rather a free choice,” he said.


    In June, Italian rightwing newspaper Il Giornale faced an outcry after it distributed free copies of an annotated version of Mein Kampf.


    A 70-year-old copyright on Mein Kampf held by the German state of Bavaria expired at the end of last year, prompting the publication of a 2,000-page, two-volume annotated version of Mein Kampf by Munich’s Institute for Contemporary History in order to “thoroughly deconstruct Hitler’s propaganda in a lasting manner.”

    Source: Deborah Danan,

    Wife of Putin aide shocks with Holocaust-themed skating routine Mon, 28 Nov 2016 18:33:43 +0000 Moscow (AFP) – The wife of President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman faced a storm of criticism on Monday for performing a Holocaust-themed ice-dancing routine with striped costumes based on concentration camp uniforms.

    Tatiana Navka, an Olympic ice dancing champion who is married to Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, performed the pirouetting routine with actor Andrei Burkovsky on a prime-time celebrity skating show on Saturday.

    The dancers wore black-and-white striped outfits with numbers and yellow stars for the routine, which ends to the sound of gunfire.

    The routine was set to a song from 1997 Oscar-winning Italian film “Life is Beautiful,” a tragicomedy about a father trying to hide the horrors of concentration camp life from his son.