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luka
21-02-2006, 07:38 AM
should there be laws against him? eh? eh?

Grievous Angel
21-02-2006, 07:51 AM
On the one hand I'm punching the air that he's got his come-uppance, on the other I suspect that, as with prosecuting Nick Griffin, no good will come of it.

john eden
21-02-2006, 08:14 AM
should there be laws against him? eh? eh?

There shouldn't be laws against him, no. But there should be laws against spreading divisive lies about "the" holocaust.

The difference with Nick Griffin is that the court cases involving Irving have actually established that he is flagrantly distorting the facts in his "history" books. Which is a good reason for them on its own.

(It also seems to me that Irving is a far more marginal figure than Griffin - i.e. that he mainly appeals to anti-semites and conspiracy theorists, whereas Griffin is more populist.)

martin
21-02-2006, 08:18 AM
He's right you know, Auschwitz was filmed at Clacton - Rudolf Hess tried to parachute into Scotland to explain this, but Zionist secret agents had developed a "birdie radar", enabling them to spot him coming a mile off, and to bundle him into a coaltruck which they pushed through a fake mountain to a secret location, while putting a Japan-made "Hess" replicant into Spandau, programmed (through mind control) to make up lies about gas chambers. Jewish scientists used the 'capture' money to create "AIDS", which they intended to drop on Field Marshall Rommel in Africa - the continent still suffers the awful effects of this Zionist terrorism today.

matt b
21-02-2006, 08:49 AM
mr irving chose to go back to a country where he had previously made statements that had broken the law. he is led solely by his ego, but his ego is dumb. deserved.

bassnation
21-02-2006, 09:02 AM
mr irving chose to go back to a country where he had previously made statements that had broken the law. he is led solely by his ego, but his ego is dumb. deserved.

i agree it was pretty stupid and hes someone who has peddled poisonous racist lies, but three years?

does anyone think this is counter-productive? can you censor these things out of existence with the courts or is it best to defeat these lies openly with argument?

IdleRich
21-02-2006, 09:13 AM
He is obviously stupid to go back to a country where he faces arrest. He's obviously an anti-semite, bad historian and a generally nasty piece of work... but you can't arrest someone for what they say can you? Especially when the West is lecturing the Islamic world on freedom of speech, it just shows that "we" haven't got such a handle on this position as we think.
I think that it is better with someone like this to hold up their arguments for everyone to see, show clearly that they are wrong and treat him with this distain that he deserves rather than prosecuting him.

droid
21-02-2006, 09:20 AM
He started with the 'languishing in prison in Austria' Hitler analogies a few weeks ago, and is certainly a pretty despicable and dishonest character (as anyone who's read any of his work knows). Looked pretty shaken on leaving the court as well...

BUT

What about freedom of speech? Do his particular statements about the particulars of what he describes as 'the Jewish tragedy in WW2' (he wont use the word 'holocaust') constitute incitement to hatred and a danger to individuals and society? The fact that the prosectuition was based on something Irving said 15 years ago, and has since rescinded. makes me wonder about the motivations behind the trial and the strength of the Neo-Nazi movement in Austria...


Anyway - I wont be shedding any tears for him...

infinite thought
21-02-2006, 09:22 AM
His jail sentence does run the risk of making him a martyr of the irrational - like we need more of those...

john eden
21-02-2006, 09:25 AM
I think that it is better with someone like this to hold up their arguments for everyone to see, show clearly that they are wrong and treat him with this distain that he deserves rather than prosecuting him.

I think one view is that you legitimise his views if you debate them. Plus some of the arguments are quite technical, iirc.

It's the same as "Intelligent Design" and "AIDs is a myth" - some stuff is SO BOLLOCKS that it just deserves a flat kicking every time it rears its head. Otherwise people end up latching onto the minutae of the arguments and it looks quite complicated so they just go "oh well, each to their own" or "oh I don't understand it all but maybe they have a point" and you end up with this retarded NONSENSE entering the mainstream by default.

Which in all 3 cases I have cited will end up being very dangerous if given the chance to bed down.

john eden
21-02-2006, 09:34 AM
What about freedom of speech? Do his particular statements about the particulars of what he describes as 'the Jewish tragedy in WW2' (he wont use the word 'holocaust') constitute incitement to hatred and a danger to individuals and society?

I think it does - any neo-nazi movement which is aiming for any sort of support will be confronted by the fact that most people see the holocaust as being one of the biggest human tragedies in recent history. If you could prove that it didn't happen and that the powers that be have covered this up, you are one step away from being completely loony and can pick up new recruits on that basis.

The BNP, before they modelled themselves on Le Pen and stopped all the "rights for whites" marches were seriously into all this stuff, distributing "holocaust news" etc.


The fact that the prosectuition was based on something Irving said 15 years ago, and has since rescinded. makes me wonder about the motivations behind the trial and the strength of the Neo-Nazi movement in Austria...

That does put it in a different context and I wasn't aware of it. I would ask in what manner he has rescinded it though and whether he still comes out with objectionable nonsense at his lectures etc.

Looking at it from another angle, I am guessing the Austrian govt can't just let him wander about their country given what they have said previously. He was clearly trying to force their hand.

matt b
21-02-2006, 09:34 AM
... but you can't arrest someone for what they say can you?

well you can, depending on what you say. this goes for at least all the european countries. austria etc have pretty legitimate reasons for having the law, considering its recent history. not that i agree with the policy, mind.

i don't see the link with islam in this case- freedom to offend is different from freedom to peddle lies.

IdleRich
21-02-2006, 09:41 AM
"It's the same as "Intelligent Design" and "AIDs is a myth" - some stuff is SO BOLLOCKS that it just deserves a flat kicking every time it rears its head"

I completely agree with this. I said yesterday (HIV myth debate) that there is a problem with objective reporting that gives equal billing to people on opposite sides of an argument even when one side is patently wrong.
I'm not saying that it should be held up for debate as such just clearly described as the lie it is whenever it is raised. He shouldn't go to jail for saying it he should just be a laughing stock (which he is).
ps it should have been "disdain" shouldn't it, why don't I notice those things when I'm typing?

IdleRich
21-02-2006, 10:00 AM
"i don't see the link with islam in this case- freedom to offend is different from freedom to peddle lies."

Perhaps crudely, the defence of the cartoons has been described simply as "freedom of speech" which is the exact words that DI has used in his defence. The offended Muslims will clearly see that as one law for them and another for Jews. In fact they had already drawn this comparison.
I do think that you are right to say that there is a difference when it is a joke or an opinion from when something has clearly been shown to be a lie. Of course some holocaust deniers could argue that their position is an opinion (although presumably not DI as his arguments have been demolished in court).


"That does put it in a different context and I wasn't aware of it. I would ask in what manner he has rescinded it though and whether he still comes out with objectionable nonsense at his lectures etc"

I thought that before he had said he was simply wrong. In court however he gave a fairly mealy-mouthed apology where he said that the number of dead was (something like) 2.75 million and gave lower fatality figures than generally accepted for a number of the deathcamps. Not exactly contrition.

matt b
21-02-2006, 10:12 AM
The offended Muslims will clearly see that as one law for them and another for Jews. In fact they had already drawn this comparison

well, there is 'one law' for jews (along with all other ethnic groups) and muslims (who are not an ethnic group)- the race relations act 1976.

however, you choose to be a muslim (or not, as the case may be) not something jews and other ethnic groups have.



irving's 'apologies'= bullshit

IdleRich
21-02-2006, 10:28 AM
"well, there is 'one law' for jews (along with all other ethnic groups) and muslims (who are not an ethnic group)- the race relations act 1976."

Specifically in this case there is a law against holocaust denial (in Austria) and there is no law against drawing "funny" pictures of Mohammed. I agree with you that the offenses are different (in degree and also in kind) but that's not how they are seen in the Islamic world.
Also, when people say that the reason there couldn't be a law against such cartoons because it would contravene "freedom of speech" then this principle is being held up as absolute so Muslims are entitled to feel hard done by when two weeks later it is shown that there are exceptions.
At bottom I do think that arresting holocaust-deniers contravenes freedom of speech.

matt b
21-02-2006, 10:42 AM
but that's not how they are seen in the Islamic world..

well, it is difficult to argue rationally with the .religious


Also, when people say that the reason there couldn't be a law against such cartoons because it would contravene "freedom of speech" then this principle is being held up as absolute so Muslims are entitled to feel hard done by when two weeks later it is shown that there are exceptions..

has 'freedom of speech as an absolute' been the central point raised, or is it 'we have a right to question people's beliefs, even if this may cause some offence'?

i still don't see the link between irving and islam!!!!


At bottom I do think that arresting holocaust-deniers contravenes freedom of speech.

yes. but seeing irving's face as the verdict was read out made me laugh- snivilling nazi-apologists don't get ANY sympathy from me

bassnation
21-02-2006, 11:04 AM
yes. but seeing irving's face as the verdict was read out made me laugh- snivilling nazi-apologists don't get ANY sympathy from me

its been a long road to absolute disgrace, starting with the libel trial and now ending with his prison sentence and repudiation of all his former ideals. he looks totally defeated.

IdleRich
21-02-2006, 11:08 AM
"has 'freedom of speech as an absolute' been the central point raised"

I thought that it was implicit in some of the things that were said.


"yes. but seeing irving's face as the verdict was read out made me laugh- snivilling nazi-apologists don't get ANY sympathy from me"

I think that we can all agree with that.
Also, I think that this law is a special case (and only in the countries where it is deemed most necessary due to history), it doesn't represent the thin edge of the wedge for some creeping crackdown on freedom of speech.

matt b
21-02-2006, 11:17 AM
I thought that it was implicit in some of the things that were said..

see, i don't think it was- its not an absolute in any country is it? if what you say breaks other laws (inciting murder for example), then you can be charged.

irving is a self-serving fascist who makes a living spouting nonsense to ideologically blinkered idiots (which, i guess is how he has that cheap air of arrogance)- he shouldn't be locked up, but should be villified, torn apart intellectually and generally ignored if he makes new statements. which is what happened in the uk since his libel trial.

IdleRich
21-02-2006, 11:23 AM
"he shouldn't be locked up, but should be villified, torn apart intellectually and generally ignored if he makes new statements. which is what happened in the uk since his libel trial."

That is EXACTLY what I think.

Paul Hotflush
21-02-2006, 11:38 AM
Pretty much agree.

owen
21-02-2006, 12:05 PM
It's the same as "Intelligent Design" and "AIDs is a myth" - some stuff is SO BOLLOCKS that it just deserves a flat kicking every time it rears its head. Otherwise people end up latching onto the minutae of the arguments and it looks quite complicated so they just go "oh well, each to their own" or "oh I don't understand it all but maybe they have a point" and you end up with this retarded NONSENSE entering the mainstream by default.

this is pretty much my view....



(once in a pub near bond st mr irving himself was pointed out to me, flirting with various UCL students from a nearby halls of residence. not that this is relevant. but i did have the 'last supper' thought, i.e would the future be a better place if...')

Buick6
21-02-2006, 12:18 PM
Can some of you geniuses explain why you refer to the 'holocaust' in lower-case, as if it's a common noun? In this particular case and context the Holocaust refers to the organised extermination of jews, gypsies and homosexuals, and maybe a few commuists, marxists and retarded/disabled people of eastern Europe, and as a result respectfully deserves to be referred to as a proper noun. But hey, we aren't biased are we now? ;)

luka
21-02-2006, 12:22 PM
but buick, if you're going to nitpick you have to get everything right yourself. Gypsy also needs capitalisation.

bassnation
21-02-2006, 12:23 PM
Can some of you geniuses explain why you refer to the 'holocaust' in lower-case, as if it's a common noun? In this particular case and context the Holocaust refers to the organised extermination of jews, gypsies and homosexuals, and maybe a few commuists, marxists and retarded/disabled people of eastern Europe, and as a result respectfully deserves to be referred to as a proper noun. But hey, we aren't biased are we now? ;)

do you really believe that anyone here wants to downplay the seriousness of that?

droid
21-02-2006, 12:28 PM
but buick, if you're going to nitpick you have to get everything right yourself. Gypsy also needs capitalisation.

Also - 'communists' is spelt wrong, and the'maybe a few' comment with regards to marxists and the 'disabled/retarded' is verging on denial itself, and minimises the suffering of hundreds of thousands of innocents who were victimised by the Nazis on the basis of ability/disability or political beliefs.

And you talk about respect... :confused:

john eden
21-02-2006, 12:47 PM
I'm disappointed he didn't notice the inverted commas in my first post on this thread. :(

Grievous Angel
21-02-2006, 12:48 PM
Oh christ, not again... :confused:

john eden
21-02-2006, 03:01 PM
Oh christ, not again... :confused:

To be fair, it all happened here first. :cool:

You're just behind the times, bruv. :p

jenks
21-02-2006, 03:43 PM
i know someone who was very heavily involved with the case in the uk over the lipstadt book - the thing about irving is what he does to history as a meaningful subject for study.

it's not a matter of interpretation, it's a matter of lying. he covers himself in a patina of academia but in fact his research methods are sloppy and inaccurate. his sources disreputable and questionable.

Richard Evans' book Telling Lies About Hitler gives the full story of the trial. A book, btw, which had to find a new publisher as his original one backed away in fear of litigation from Irving. hats off to Tariq Ali and Verso for stepping forward and publishing it

Irving is a racist, he has quite clearly broken Austrian law and more fool him for returning there where he knows the law. I can't feel sorry for him and his 'freedom of speech' demands.

yeah there should more capital letters in here somewhere i'm sure

Grievous Angel
21-02-2006, 04:18 PM
To be fair, it all happened here first. :cool: I mean B6 back on his hobby horse...

john eden
21-02-2006, 04:23 PM
I mean B6 back on his hobby horse...

I assumed from the smiley he was having a larf.

zhao
21-02-2006, 04:52 PM
there should be laws against spreading divisive lies about "the" holocaust.

this is on a side note:

all of Japan is guilty then. to this day their history books omit entire chapters on the invasion of China, Korea, etc, etc, during WWII, and the heinous crimes against humanity commited by their milliatary, which surpasses the cruelty of Nazi Germany.

the reason why everyone thinks of Auschwitz when they think of the horrors of the 20th century is not because it was the most terrible, but because the Jews are the most vocal about what happened to them. the Armenians, Chinese, etc, etc, suffered FAR worse fates, and were slaughtered in FAR greater numbers than during the Holocaust, and people rarely mention these incidences.

droid
21-02-2006, 05:40 PM
Ive been reading about the Armenian genocide recently, and it is truly shocking stuff, especially in context of the Turkish (and most of the rest of the worlds) denial of the 1.5 million who died in their brutal campaign...

I suppose that the difference between the Holocaust and the other genocides and mass-killings of the 20th century, is that it stands out as being a premeditated and highly mechanised, industrial, and scientific process perpatrated on an unimaginable scale over a huge area for non-territorial gains. Hitler may have taken inspiration from the Turks and American expansion to the West, but his slaughter of the Jews took the logic of genocide to new and unprecedented levels...


the Armenians, Chinese, etc, etc, suffered FAR worse fates, and were slaughtered in FAR greater numbers than during the Holocaust, and people rarely mention these incidences

Im not sure if the facts match up with these assertions, and evaluating and comparing the 'worseness' of the fates of the victims of genocide is going down a fairly dodgy road IMO...

zhao
21-02-2006, 06:33 PM
sorry. I don't mean "worse", I just mean "out numbered".

it is just shocking that today (atleast in the US), I would estimate that at least 90% of the population have NEVER HEARD OF the Armenian genocide, and a probably higher percentage do not know that more Chinese died in WWII than Jews.

while the Holocaust is as popular as Seinfeld.

droid
21-02-2006, 07:40 PM
sorry. I don't mean "worse", I just mean "out numbered".

it is just shocking that today (atleast in the US), I would estimate that at least 90% of the population have NEVER HEARD OF the Armenian genocide, and a probably higher percentage do not know that more Chinese died in WWII than Jews.

while the Holocaust is as popular as Seinfeld.


Not to diminish the terrible crimes committed against the Chinese in WW2, but Japanese aggression wasnt an attempt at genocide (depite the racist nature of Japanese fascism) - just good old fashioned territorial expansion and subjugation through terror... not that it matters to the victim if they die at the end of a bayonet or in a gas chamber... :(

I agree that the Holocaust has overshadowed many other terrible crimes of the 20th century; Indonesia's genocide in East Timor is a pointed example, and IMO every holocaust deserves equal commeration - but without diminishing the (for want of a better word) uniqueness of the Nazi's campaign against European Jewry.

owen
22-02-2006, 02:54 PM
the Holocaust is as popular as Seinfeld.

nice phrase.
what, exactly are you trying to say here? the point with the Holocaust is not necessarily in numbers (let's not forget the enormous amount of people killed by allied bombing in hamburg, dresden, berlin...) but, as droid points out, in the fact that people were sent to camps such as Treblinka just to be killed, something which is almost entirely without precedent in history.
(though you're right about Armenia- 'who remembers the armenians' was of course Hitler's line)

droid
22-02-2006, 03:02 PM
'who remembers the armenians' was of course Hitler's line)

Ironically enough, even Hilters mention of the Armenians has been denied by Turkish commentators... :(

borderpolice
22-02-2006, 04:08 PM
as droid points out, in the fact that people were sent to camps such as Treblinka just to be killed, something which is almost entirely without precedent in history.

you need to read a history book or two. the people in the camps were killed for very specific reasons (communist -> because of the threat of stalinism; jews -> because of their alledged fight against non-jews via capitalist exploitation, communism and freemasonery). these reasons were partially appropriate (in case of stalinists) and in other cases utterly bogus (jews, gypsis). however starting wars for bogus reasons is hardly novel, in fact most wars are like that, including the recent irak war. the most outstanding thing about the final solution is probably more in the efficiency with which the mass killing was carried out (though immediatly trumped by the nuclear bombs) and the total lack of resistance on the side of the victims [but then there didnt seem to have been much real resistance to stalinist excess within the soviet union either]. that both stalin and hitler could take over a vast bureaucratic apparatus and dominate vast stretches of land efficiently is a consequence of technological development, mostly in terms of weapons and means of communication.

borderpolice
22-02-2006, 04:10 PM
(though you're right about Armenia- 'who remembers the armenians' was of course Hitler's line)

i wonder if i am the only one who notices the obvious fact that hitler did remember the armenian incident?

infinite thought
22-02-2006, 04:23 PM
and the total lack of resistance on the side of the victims.

Sobibor, October 14, 1943 means nothing to you then?


these reasons were partially appropriate (in case of stalinists) and partially utterly bogus (jews, gypsis)

wtf are you saying here?


more in the efficiency with which the mass killing was carried out (though immediatly trumped by the nuclear bombs)

well, of course there was Zyklon B and the gas chambers, but there was also a lot of not-very technical and plain brutal killing going too. Driving 'gas-vans' around with the exhaust pipe directed into the back through a hose did for many (particularly those with mental illnesses), and 'simple' shooting and beating to death was the sorry fate of thousands.

It's a mistake to think that technology trumped or somehow frames in a peculiarly modern way the more crucial fact of sheer Nazi murderousness. It's something Lanzmann's Shoah film makes clear.

borderpolice
22-02-2006, 04:29 PM
Sobibor, October 14, 1943 means nothing to you then?

compared with the reaction of e.g the soviets or the western allies there was no significant resistance. sure there were individual acts, but that's ineffective against army based large scale violence. this is all the more surprising, as the targeted groups, unlike in the stalinist case were not effectivly randomly chosen, very much on the contrary, they formed very clearcut groups. but they were spacially fairly distributed.



wtf are you saying here?

i might have expressed myself carelessly, sorry. what i meant is this: I'm saying that waging war against a dreadful dictator like stalin (or hitler) -- unlike in case of the racial war -- is justified. whether the specifics of these wars represent the best possible course of action is a differrnt matter. the race stuff was utterly bogus, though at the time racism was endmic and (partially) had scientific credibility, as a result of colonial exploitation as the result of the rewriting of biology in terms of evolution.



well, of course there was Zyklon B and the gas chambers, but there was also a lot of not-very technical and plain brutal killing going too. Driving 'gas-vans' around with the exhaust pipe directed into the back through a hose did for many (particularly those with mental illnesses), and 'simple' shooting and beating to death was the sorry fate of thousands.

well, but apart from technical details these things are hardly novel, as even the tiniest understanding of the history of humanity makes clear. gas as a means of killing was for example very popular on all sides of the first WW (here's a web reference) (http://www.worldwar1.com/arm006.htm) , the first fully industrialised war, hence industrialised killing. it goes back much further, the chinese used it way back. murdering disabled is as old as humanity, the nazis made it more efficient, a state policy rather than leaving it to individuals.



It's a mistake to think that technology trumped or somehow frames in a peculiarly modern way the more crucial fact of sheer Nazi murderousness. It's something Lanzmann's Shoah film makes clear.

i disagree with this.

infinite thought
22-02-2006, 04:59 PM
i disagree with this.

You disagree that that's what Lanzmann's film shows, or you disagree that Nazi violence took other forms other than the 'technological'?

borderpolice
22-02-2006, 05:02 PM
You disagree that that's what Lanzmann's film shows, or you disagree that Nazi violence took other forms other than the 'technological'?

the latter.

infinite thought
22-02-2006, 05:19 PM
Raul Hilberg estimates that over 800,000 died from "Ghettoization and general privation;" and 1,400,000 who were killed in "Open-air shootings" during the Holocaust (according to this (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holocaust) write up) - the point the Lanzmann film makes (and his Sobibor documentary) is to do with the absolute bureaucratisation of the Holocaust, which obviously included massive technological elements, but wasn't totally over-determined by them - blaming 'technology' pure and simple sometimes seems to me a way of not blaming the people who used it.

With regard to bureaucracy, the Sobibor rebellion could only have taken place because the guards were so organised and punctual - those in the camp took advantage of the timetables in order to murder their captors.

zhao
22-02-2006, 05:21 PM
what, exactly are you trying to say here?

just pointing out that the suffering of one people carries more weight/is better remembered/represented/seems more significant/etc., than the suffering of other people. for various economic/political reasons.

droid
22-02-2006, 05:37 PM
Raul Hilberg estimates that over 800,000 died from "Ghettoization and general privation;" and 1,400,000 who were killed in "Open-air shootings" during the Holocaust (according to this (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holocaust) write up) - the point the Lanzmann film makes (and his Sobibor documentary) is to do with the absolute bureaucratisation of the Holocaust, which obviously included massive technological elements, but wasn't totally over-determined by them - blaming 'technology' pure and simple sometimes seems to me a way of not blaming the people who used it.

With regard to bureaucracy, the Sobibor rebellion could only have taken place because the guards were so organised and punctual - those in the camp took advantage of the timetables in order to murder their captors.

What struck me about Edwin Blacks' 'IBM and the Holocaust' was this exact quality - the astounding bureauctic organisation of the Nazi genocide illustrated by the reams of punch cards, statistics and censuses...

borderpolice
22-02-2006, 05:37 PM
the absolute bureaucratisation of the Holocaust, which obviously included massive technological elements, but wasn't totally over-determined by them - blaming 'technology' pure and simple sometimes seems to me a way of not blaming the people who used it.

wasnt that exactly one of my points? however, every modern army's functioning is dependent on a supporting bureaucracy. in any case, large scale efficient bureaucracies are themselves dependent on efficient means of communication.

borderpolice
22-02-2006, 05:40 PM
What struck me about Edwin Blacks' 'IBM and the Holocaust' was this exact quality - the astounding bureauctic organisation of the Nazi genocide illustrated by the reams of punch cards, statistics and censuses...

of course the other sides in this war had similar bureaucracies -- project manhattan would surely not have come about without a veritable organisational machine. the rapid and ubiquitous exchange of personel at all levels between armies, state and industrial bureaucracies (example: the case of robert mac namara, US defense minister in JBL's admin, former General Motors executive and bomber pilot) illustrates that nicely.

the fact of the matter is simply this: every modern army is a bureacratic industrial killing machine. to say otherwise is denial.

bassnation
22-02-2006, 07:21 PM
this is an awful argument, its like atrocity top trumps or something.

bassnation
22-02-2006, 07:24 PM
the fact of the matter is simply this: every modern army is a bureacratic industrial killing machine. to say otherwise is denial.

so in your eyes the nazis did nothing out of the ordinairy and all sides are pretty much equivalent?

please tell me that i've misunderstood your argument.

Buick6
23-02-2006, 11:09 AM
while the Holocaust is as popular as Seinfeld.

..But not more popular than Jesus, actually I"ll leave that to the Beatles..Of course, some of your best friends ARE Jewish, aren't they?

droid
23-02-2006, 12:01 PM
Of course, some of your best friends ARE Jewish, aren't they?

You could be 100% right or 100% wrong - but why the fuck should anyone take your accusations of anti-semitism seriously?

You cry wolf at every opportunity and it completely devalues any serious political opinions you might have (If you're capable of anything other than snide asides that is).

Surely youd be more comfortable playing with Little Green Footballs? :p

matt b
23-02-2006, 12:03 PM
...If you're capable of anything other than snide asides that is...

buick6's comments aren't even THAT good

bassnation
23-02-2006, 12:43 PM
You could be 100% right or 100% wrong - but why the fuck should anyone take your accusations of anti-semitism seriously?

hes even assuming that no-one here is jewish or has jewish ancestors - thats a massive and risky assumption in itself.

even then not all jews agree with zionism.

its a complicated picture and its best not to sling mud unless you can back it up.

borderpolice
23-02-2006, 01:29 PM
so in your eyes the nazis did nothing out of the ordinairy and all sides are pretty much equivalent?

please tell me that i've misunderstood your argument.

your question tells me you have not understood my argument.

but by and large such questions don't lead anywhere useful.

bassnation
23-02-2006, 01:44 PM
your question tells me you have not understood my argument.

but by and large such questions don't lead anywhere useful.

fair enough, i accept your point.

droid
23-02-2006, 03:15 PM
the fact of the matter is simply this: every modern army is a bureacratic industrial killing machine. to say otherwise is denial.

What about crap armies? ;) Or the episodes in the Gulf Wars when 'allied' men and machines were sent into Iraq without even a decent map?

I see your point, but its not really relevant. Most armies dont pursue campaigns of genocide against civilian populations. Even the war crimes committed by the allies in WW2 dont come near that category, and the US's postwar campaigns of terror in South-East Asia, Latin America and elsewhere, terrible as they were, did not have the genocide of entire ethnic groups as its primary motivation - rather the victims were irrelevant 'unpeople' - considered to be utterly disposable commodities at best.

Its not really much of a distinction I agree - but nonetheless, thats the definition...

Genocide is actualy a very technical term for a very specific crime - and intention is a major part of it. Check out the article 2 of the UN convention:


In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such: a) Killing members of the group; b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group

Slothrop
23-02-2006, 04:16 PM
Rewinding a bit...

the reason why everyone thinks of Auschwitz when they think of the horrors of the 20th century is not because it was the most terrible, but because the Jews are the most vocal about what happened to them. the Armenians, Chinese, etc, etc, suffered FAR worse fates, and were slaughtered in FAR greater numbers than during the Holocaust, and people rarely mention these incidences.
Sidestepping the 'my genocide was worse than your genocide' arguments for a bit, there are quite a number of other reasons that the holocaust is the most remembered atrocity of the 20th century.

First up, it's one of not many that was ended by a large scale war on the people perpetrating it. This means that the holocaust will be involved in discussions of WWII, and since WWII pretty much set the stage for the last fifty years of history, this means that it comes up a lot. Particulalry since the horrors of the holocaust can be used to justify WWII.

It's also one of not many that was revealed while in full flow, to a world that had become more aware that killing large numbers of people is a bad thing. The shock of Stalin's killings was lessened by the time it took the west to realize that they'd happened, and the Herero genocide only came into perspective as more of the world came to understand that killing Africans is no more acceptable than killing Europeans.

Finally, pretty much everyone everywhere has a stronger reaction to things that happen 'closer' to them, either in terms of time, space, or cultural similarity. This is normally held up as an example of white european / american self obsession, but it seems to be a pretty natural feature of people - I'm more shocked if someone gets mugged in my area of my town than by someone getting shot somewhere else in the country. And more recent things are obviously fresher in the memory. So it's quite natural that the genocide that western europeans remember most is one that happened comparatively recently in a western european country.

I'm not trying to diminish the holocaust or any other mass murder here - they're all terrible. I'm just suggesting a few reasons that we might remember one and all but forget the others.

zhao
24-02-2006, 05:22 AM
those reasons make sense. but don't you think another reason is because... ok, fuck tip-toeing around: Jews are more vocal about what happened to them and have the economic ability to make representations of it, i.e. make movie after movie about the Holocaust.

no, I am not anti-semetic nor am I expressing any sentiments even close to it. just making objective observations.

just like the observation that there is almost zero representation, and absolutely zero positive representation, of Arabs/Muslims in hollywood films.

borderpolice
24-02-2006, 12:43 PM
Most armies dont pursue campaigns of genocide against civilian populations. Even the war crimes committed by the allies in WW2 dont come near that category, and the US's postwar campaigns of terror in South-East Asia, Latin America and elsewhere, terrible as they were, did not have the genocide of entire ethnic groups as its primary motivation - rather the victims were irrelevant 'unpeople' - considered to be utterly disposable commodities at best.

I agree, but i don't quite see why that would be relevant. the impetus behind assuming that genocide is worse than other forms of mass killing of the same or larger size is essentially that what really matters about humans is their race or religion or nationality. this i cannot agree with. essentially, the stipulation of genocide as worse than numerically comparable forms of killing thus remains racist.

you make this point forcefully, when you say "the victims were irrelevant 'unpeople' - considered to be utterly disposable commodities". the key term here is "victim",
rather than race, religion or nationality of the victim.

incidentally, stalinist purges contained many genocidal elements, various population groups were wiped out almost completly through starvation and relocation (to fine and hospitable siberian lands) policies, or what about shooting officers because they were poles? this is just not very well publicised. furthermore, the soviets were builiding up the red army with the expressed purpose of imperialism, of spreading their poisonous regime across the globe. in fact on of the first acts of leninist foreign policy was an attack on poland, though that failed for various reasons. germany was often mentioned as first or one of the first target for soviet territorial expansion.

droid
24-02-2006, 01:07 PM
I agree, but i don't quite see why that would be relevant. the impetus behind assuming that genocide is worse than other forms of mass killing of the same or larger size is essentially that what really matters about humans is their race or religion or nationality. this i cannot agree with. essentially, the stipulation of genocide as worse than numerically comparable forms of killing thus remains racist.

you make this point forcefully, when you say "the victims were irrelevant 'unpeople' - considered to be utterly disposable commodities".

Im not making the assumption though. The UN and the signatories to the genocide Convention are. And its as much a technical definition of a crime as it is a moral or value judgement.

The rather pedantic point I'm making is that: what makes genocide what it is, is the intent behind the act - ie: to utterly exterminate a single ethnic group. That simply makes it different from other crimes against humanity which have other motivations. Whether or not its morally 'worse' than any other comparable acts is up to the individual.