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Remember the Future Holocaust

This Wednesday evening, April 15th, 2015 is Holocaust Remembrance Day. On Thursday, April 2nd, 2015 an agreement was reached between Iran and the United States to lay the groundwork for another Holocaust, one much more technologically advanced, one much more capable of carrying out its goals.  On what day will we commemorate the future Holocaust against Israel? Or will there be anyone left to remember it?

Remembering Past Holocausts

After all, the Nazi Holocaust wasn’t the first; it was just more effective, using the most advanced technology of the mid-twentieth century. Weapons and instruments of torture based on seventeenth century technology led to the brutal destruction of three hundred thousand Jews in what was essentially a feud between the Cossacks and Tartars, Poland, Lithuania and the Ukraine, with a mix of rivalry between branches of Christianity.

Atavistic Hatred Original art by Esti Mayer

Atavistic Hatred
Original art by Esti Mayer

The gas chambers of the Nazis, the scythes and pitchforks of the Ukrainian peasants were nothing compared to the killing power of nuclear weapons. In the future Holocaust, Technology developed in large part by Jews may be used to rid the world of the Jewish state.

It’s clear that Israel cannot depend on the United States to protect its interests. The U.S. has abdicated its role as the world’s policeman, allowing gangs of religious fanatics and dictators to run rampant, pursuing their own evil agendas. It’s clear that Jews cannot depend on local police forces to defend their safety in cities and countries throughout the world.

It also seems clear that the Jews cannot depend on God alone to protect their physical well-being.

Many scholars and thinkers have been asking whether the unparalleled event of the Holocaust did not create a most serious existential crisis in which the text by definition was invalidated. After six million Jews, including nearly two million children, lost their lives within five years under the cruelest of circumstances, can we still seriously speak about a viable covenant in which God promised to protect His people?… The Holocaust, they believe, proved that we have only ourselves to rely on, and that even the return to Israel is to be understood as a secular liberation of the galut experience.

To write God out of the picture would be to write Judaism and the Jewish people out of the picture. So that too, is not a viable course of action.

Preventing the Future Holocaust

In fact, there is no correct answer, no proper course of action. There are too many variables, too many characters acting with their own free will; acting from a set of beliefs and values that are totally alien to us. Only hindsight may enable us to know what were the right and wrong choices in dealing with Iran’s promise to annihilate Israel, to destroy the Jews.

My great-grandfather was the senior rabbi in Warsaw during the Nazi holocaust. Prior to the war (following the death or Rabbi Kook), he was offered the position of Chief Rabbi of Palestine (Israel). Knowing difficult times were coming, he refused to leave his community in Poland, although he encouraged others to move there. At the outbreak of the war, Jewish leaders wanted to evacuate him to safety. Again, he refused to leave his people. When faced with a round-up by the Nazis, he made his decision. (A few rabbinic leaders made a different kind of decision)

Tirosh Veyaitzher

Tirosh Veyaitzher

Rabbi Zvi Yecheskiel Michelson, dean of the Warsaw rabbinate, deliberately remained at home while a large roundup was on. He did not go out as the Germans ordered, but put on his prayer shawl and phylacteries and stayed inside. He preferred to be shot on the spot, hoping that this his boy would be thrown into one of the wagons that accompanied the roundup and find a last resting place in the Jewish cemetery. So he willingly opened the door to the search party, but when the Germans saw the tall old man, with his long silver-white beard, they became uneasy. One of them mumbled, according to the Jewish policeman who accompanied the search: “This must be Moses in person.” They slammed the door shut and left the aged rabbi alone. He must have decided then that staying with his people in their last moments was even more important than being buried in a Jewish cemetery. He rose, went down to the courtyard, and joined the marching ranks of Jews towards the Umschlag, from which the people were sent to Treblinka. (p. xiii)

May the blood of my great-grandfather be avenged. May the future holocaust be prevented.

 

Your comments are welcome

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The Face of Evil Today

The Bible Names Its Enemies:

The Bible names its enemies: Egypt, Amalek, the Philistines, and many others.  For each of them the Bible spells out why they are considered the

Joseph Dwells in Egypt, by James Jacques Joseph Tissot

Joseph Dwells in Egypt by James Jacques Joseph Tissot

enemy, and what to do about them.  We are told not to hate the Egyptians because we were strangers in their land. We were also refugees there, and military allies.  Though Pharaoh did evil, Egypt doesn’t embody wickedness.

Amalek is the face of evil in the Bible,  the paradigmatic bad guy.  The nation attacked the Jewish people shortly after the miraculous crossing of the Red Sea. The Bible, in response, promised “a war for the Lord against Amalek from generation to generation.” Amalek is linked to Haman, who tried to eradicate the Jews of the Persian Empire. Even Nazi Germany is fancifully tied to them.

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks is a global religious leader, philosopher and moral voice for our time. A towering intellectual and prolific author, he is respected and revered by Jews and non-Jews alike. He examined the face of evil in a recent essay in which he wrote that the Egyptians hated and enslaved the Israelites, because they feared their strength. When the reason for the hatred would disappear so would the hatred, because of rational self-interest.

Amalek, on the other hand, attacked the Israelites simply because they could. It was an irrational hatred that could not disappear when the reason disappeared, because there was no reason. Rabbi Sacks explains it is this irrational face of evil that the Bible demands we remember.

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks

The Face of Evil Beneath the Heart:

The Rabbi explains:

It is easy at times of peace to forget the evil that lies just beneath the surface of the human heart. Never was this truer than in the past three centuries. The birth of Enlightenment, toleration, emancipation, liberalism and human rights persuaded many, Jews among them, that collective evil was as extinct as the Amalekites. Evil was then, not now. That age eventually begat nationalism, fascism, communism, two World Wars, some of the brutal tyrannies ever known, and the worst crime of man against man.

In the peaceful times that followed World War II, many Americans, Canadians, and Europeans forgot again about the face of evil, the irrational hatred which dwells in many hearts. The troubles in the world were attributed to the evil acts of the strong and powerful, to legacy of colonialism. The violence in South-East Asia, the Middle East, were explained away as rational responses to the legacy of western imperialism.

the face of evil

the face of evil

Refusing to Recognize the Face of Evil:

On September 11, 2001, it became impossible to ignore the face of evil, casting its evil eye. Although many people still searched for explanations or conspiracies, there was nothing to rationalize the brutal terror unleashed upon America. Rabbi Sacks declares:

Today, the great danger is terror (emphasis added)

…That is why are commanded to remember and never forget Amalek, not because the historic people still exists, but because a society of rational actors can sometimes believe that the world is full of rational actors with whom one can negotiate peace. It is not always so.

The Rabbi Is Wrong:

Rabbi Sacks is wrong. The greatest danger is not terror. It’s radical Islam, which is the source of virtually all contemporary terrorism.

One cannot remember, never mind confront the face of evil if you refuse to call it by its name. We are not commanded ‘not to hate’ the chariot riders (Egypt), or to remember what the attackers of the weak (Amalek) did. We don’t identify these enemies by their military techniques. Terror is a technique, used to demoralize and crush. It is being used by the adherents of a specific religion, in the name of their religion. Victims may refuse to identify the purveyors of fear as Muslims, but the terrorists aren’t shy about it. A politician, a journalist, a Rabbi might say that terror isn’t Islamic, but the Muslims terrorists say it is. An Orthodox rabbi is not a higher authority on Islam than the many Muslims who proclaims terror as an integral part of their faith.  The Muslims who oppose them don’t deny the nature of their violence. A Brooklyn Imam, identifying radical Islam as a “cancer,” said:

“These scholars consider any verse that calls to treat people with kindness to have been abrogated. All that remains valid is ‘Kill! Slaughter!’ Is that the only thing that God tells us? …Muslims of the religious sector are time bombs.”

Put a Name to the Face of Evil:

Moses at the battle against Amalek

Moses at the battle against Amalek

If we refuse to name the contemporary Amalek, surely we cannot remember them.   If we’re too afraid to name them, they are winning.

In the first Biblical encounter with Amelek, Moses, the leader of the Israelites held up his arms during the battle, and the people were inspired to victory. The leaders of today such are not raising their hands, and the people hesitate to fight back. Rabbi Sacks says the evil is “terror.” The Dalai Lama says it’s not fair to associate terrorism with Islam.  Gandhi, the icon of nonviolence rationalized “…if Hindus became Muslims to save themselves from death, it was …not forcible conversion.”  The failure to identify, never mind remember the face of evil, the contemporary Amalek, is a violation of an obligation to God, of a responsibility to mankind.

Dalai Lama

Dalai Lama

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A Different Kind Of War

A Manifesto

Redefining the Battlefield

Our civilized world is in a different kind of war, aimed at dragging it back to the 8th century.  Our values are the enemy’s main weapon against us.  We must adapt if we are to survive.

Forget “religion.” Forget “nation” and “geography.” Don’t even think about “ideology” or “economy.” The enemy in this war includes our citizens, our co-religionists, people on the other side of the world, and our next-door neighbors. The civilized world, regardless of race, religion or region is in an apocalyptic conflict, aimed at dragging the world back to the Dark Ages, and the old categories are keeping us from fighting back.

Forget the meaning of war. Forget the Geneva Convention, the Hague Convention on the rules and regulations of war. Those are for armies, countries, civilized people. This is a irrelevant in a different kind of wardifferent kind of war

Some combat takes place on the battlefields of Iraq and Syria. Other battles are on the streets of Ottawa, Paris, Boston and Montreal. Some involves the execution of soldiers; some, of shoppers. The aggressor in this war wants to browbeat his opponents into acquiescence; this doesn’t always entail killing. Sometimes the threat of violence is enough to cancel a lecture, silence a critic. The police are among the first to advise compliance in order to avoid trouble. They certainly don’t want to appear Islamophobic.

Cops are good for dealing with criminals. They are not equipped for war. Our legal system is not equipped for this different war. And so, we are losing.

 

Islamophobia- a different kind of war

Islamophobia

We lost on 9/11.

We lost in the Madrid, the London bombings.

We lost in the Boston Marathon, at Parliament in Ottawa, in the relentless barbarism in Nigeria.

…and countless more.

Body_Scan_Pic

airport security scan

We lose every time we go to the airport and  give up an hour or so to have our bags and bodies scanned.

We lose every time we use a phone, send an e-mail or look at a web page, because these are no longer private acts. They must be scanned by security, looking for plots by our enemies.

We lose whenever an organization fears to publish its address, when security guards or even soldiers have to protect religious institutions. When we can’t go into certain areas of our cities, because they are under control of the enemy.

We lose when dissenting opinions are shouted down or their speakers beaten up. When those opinions can’t be given voice, for fear of offending vengeful, violent people. Free speech is good and we are all Charlie Hebdo, but we don’t want to end up like Charlie Hebdo.

Kenyan Church after attack

Kenyan Church after attack

A Different Kind of War Strategy

It will get worse unless we prepare to fight back. We need different tactics, for this different war. Here are some suggestions:

  • Ban immigration, ban temporary visas from regions where our defeats are celebrated, where our enemies are admired; places such as Iran, Syria, Pakistan, and North Africa.
    • Canada has a long tradition of favoring immigrants from particular countries. It’s time for Canada and the U.S. to discriminate on the basis of origin.
  • Anyone who goes to fight on behalf of an enemy or terrorist entity shall be considered guilty of treason if he is a citizen or legal resident.
    • If he’s on temporary visa, the visa shall be immediately cancelled and the person deported.
    • The death penalty for treason must be restored, with a process that does not lead to interminable delays.
  • Mosques must report to police the identity of new converts,so they can be monitored.
    • Some people find violence and savagery exciting. Tired of online game warfare, they want to go to the next level, and think that Islam will get them there. The Imam of the mosque of Martin Couture-Rouleau, the convert who ran over two soldiers in St. Jean, Quebec, understood the problem, and cooperated with the RCMP. Such cooperation must be mandatory.
    • This discriminatory practice needn’t apply to other religions; their converts are not killing in the name of their new beliefs.
  • Jailed radical Muslims must be isolated from other prisoners, to prevent jailhouse radicalization or conversion.
  • Prisons must develop and apply effective intervention programs to minimize radicalization of inmates.
A War to Protect Civil Rights and Liberties

“Civil rights” are the rights of individuals to receive equal treatment (and to be free from unfair treatment or “discrimination”) in a number of settings — including education, employment, housing, and more — and based on certain legally-protected characteristics.

  • TheCivil Rights of the majority,and of peaceful minorities must be protected by civil and criminal law.  This includes (within the confines of law)
    • Ability to hold meetings
    • To publish and disseminate information
    • To dress according to their religion without fear of violence
    • To peacefully espouse their religious traditions and attend services.
    • To support the political and social causes of their choice.
      • All without fear of violence.
  •  A person’s right to advocate for a cause shall not interfere with the right of others to work, or to carry on their business.
    Modern taxi service

    Modern taxi service

    • The right to practice a religion shall not oblige an employer to compromise his business in order to accommodate religious beliefs and practices.
    • If a person freely takes on an obligation, he cannot excuse himself from it because of religious issues
      • If a person takes a job as a bartender, he cannot refuse to serve alcohol. If he’s a taxi driver he cannot refuse service dogs because of his religion. If his faith forbids dogs, let him find a different job.
  • Anyone on a visa who interferes with civil rights of others shall immediately have his visa cancelled.
  • Anyone interfering with normal activities (civil rights) of Canadians shall be held financially responsible for the consequences.
  • Anyone causing financial loss though demonstrations or related political activities shall be held financially responsible.
  • Anyone sponsoring or organizing such interference, whether directly or indirectly shall be held financially or criminally responsible.
  • The Tides Foundation of San Francisco funds environmental protests in Canada. Such protests include obstructing the operation or
    "Useful Idiots"

    “Useful Idiots”

    construction of national infrastructure. The anonymous donors who fund such activities through Tides must be held accountable for the damage they cause.

  • Calling for the death of people because of their race, ethnicity or religion shall be deemed a criminal act.
  • It shall be illegal to conceal one’s face when in public place, except as part of organized activity with permit from appropriate authorities.
International Economics and Propaganda in a Different Kind of War

The economic success of Western civilization is premised on capitalism, i.e. the free flow of capital between economic entities.   Any interference with the flow is bad, in principle. However when the entities have another purpose beside economic advancement or are trying to gain a surreptitious advantage, they must be controlled. When a CNOOC, a Chinese company bought a large stake in a Canadian energy company it gave the tyrannical Chinese Communist Party a direct hand in Canadian energy development. It didn’t take long for it to start reneging on the commitments it made to get regulatory approval.

Petronas Towers, Malaysia

Petronas Towers, Malaysia

Petronas, owned by the government of Malaysia also has significant stakes in Canadian energy companies, including infrastructure. Malaysia is sixty-one percent Muslim. This in itself need not be a problem, but the country is quickly sliding towards fundamentalism and violence. A past Prime Minister was a vicious anti-Semite, and the current one has praised the strength of ISIS fighters.

In Saudi Arabia and the gulf Emirates, the governments, the energy producers and the worldwide wealth they control are essentially the same entities. The Saudis are the second largest shareholder in Fox News. They have a growing influence in the American press and entertainment industry, and they are not shy about using it.   When environmentalists oppose North American energy development, when they create obstacles that delay projects and add costs, the Saudis gain a competitive cost advantage. Sometimes the environmentalists know who is funding their work, sometimes they are clueless. Either way, they are serving the regime that has funded the worldwide spread of radical Islam.

By funding North American environmentalists, by engaging in an energy price war, the Saudis are trying to gain a surreptitious advantage. Petronas, the Saudis and CNOOC are not simply foreign capitalist entities. The former two are connected to those who have undertaken the different kind of war against us. The latter two are part of aggressive, anti-democratic regimes with no respect for the values of Western civilization. They must not be allowed to influence us in our battle.

  • Megyn-Kelly-FNC

    Employed by Murdoch and Alwaleed

    All voting control of subsidiaries of state-owned entities must be firmly and clearly separated from the regimes that own them.

  • Western governments shall be entitled to place auditors within the subsidiaries to ensure that decisions they make are for normal business purposes only.
  • Subsidiaries of state-owned entities shall not be allowed to engage in public relations, political lobbying or community affairs, whether directly or through funding of other groups.
  • Subsidiaries of state-owned entities shall not be allowed to invest in the press, entertainment media, or online social networks.
 A Different Kind of War Entails a Different Kind of Sacrifice

In previous world wars, populations related to the enemy were placed in internment camps, to make sure they weren’t working to destroy us from within. Loyal Canadians and Americans were rounded up, and treated horribly. We don’t want to do that again. It’s more than probable that the vast majority of Muslims are loyal citizens of the Western countries they now inhabit (there is no way to properly quantify this). But we can’t ignore the many radicals dedicated to our destruction.   We must make sacrifices, such as suspending some of  our values— the ones that are being used against us.  We must fight back. Pretending that a different kind of war is not really a war is the path of appeasement on the road to surrender.

You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality.
                                                                                    – Ayn Rand

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I’m Not Gonna Argue History

hebdoHow did we get here? It’s not what our civilization is about.

On January 7, 2015, Three black-clad gunmen shouting “Allahu Akbar” stormed the Paris offices of a satirical publication known for lampooning Islam, killing 12, including its editor, three political cartoonists and a police officer whose cold-blooded murder at close range was captured on a disturbing video. This resulted in a wave of  Islamaphobia, and baseless hostility to the Religion of Peace.  Why  did the French government allow the magazine Charlie Hebdo to continue to provoke Muslims, thereby placing the safety of its citizens at risk?

“I think everyone sees history through their own lens, and I don’t begrudge anyone from wanting to see what they want to see. This is what I see. This is what we see. And that should be valid. I’m not gonna argue history; I could, but I won’t.”

 The History of Pearl Harbour

On December 7, 1941, a Japanese air expedition on a humanitarian relief expedition ran into mechanical problems near Hawaii. Contaminated fuel, or something like that, led to

Planes accidentally crash at naval base

Planes accidentally crash at naval base

their rapid descent from the skies, as they hoped to land at Pearl Harbor to repair and refuel. American military commanders mistook the peaceful approach for an attack, and started firing upon the peaceful Japanese aircraft. The pilots, now in even worse trouble, had to unload their ordinance to lighten their planes. The Americans used this as an excuse to declare war on neutral Japan.

“I think everyone sees history through their own lens, and I don’t begrudge anyone from wanting to see what they want to see. This is what I see. This is what we see. And that should be valid. I’m not gonna argue history; I could, but I won’t.”

  The History of the Warsaw Ghetto

Jews like to live in close-knit communities (ghettos), to be near their synagogues, kosher restaurants, gymnasiums and banks. On April 19,

Burning the Warsaw Ghetto

Burning the Warsaw Ghetto

1943, a fire broke out in the heart of the Jewish community in Warsaw, Poland. The fire raged for twenty seven days, before finally being extinguished with the help of visiting German troops.  It was a terrible holocaust. Shocked, disheartened survivors were sent to Treblinka, where they were given food, shelter, and gainful employment.

“I think everyone sees history through their own lens, and I don’t begrudge anyone from wanting to see what they want to see. This is what I see. This is what we see. And that should be valid. I’m not gonna argue history; I could, but I won’t.”

 The History of Fort Hood Workplace Violence

On November 5, 2009, a mass murder took place at Fort Hood, Texas. In a letter to a Florida congressman, a top Army official wrote that the available evidence did not indicate the 2009 attack was an act of international terrorism. The official, at the time the Army’s senior uniformed lawyer, described the attack as “the alleged criminal act of a single individual.” Hasan was charged with mass murder, not terrorism. The government made it clear: Ft Hoodthe Fort Hood shooting was workplace violence.

“I think everyone sees history through their own lens, and I don’t begrudge anyone from wanting to see what they want to see. This is what I see. This is what we see. And that should be valid. I’m not gonna argue history; I could, but I won’t.”

 The History of the Selma Civil Rights March
Dr. King and Rabbi Heschel

Dr. King and Rabbi Heschel

President Lyndon Johnson was opposed to civil rights for black people, and did everything he could to stop Martin Luther King’s famous march in Selma, Alabama. It was Johnson (not the liberal icon Bobby Kennedy, as some fascists claimed) who set the FBI on King.  It was a time when black people stood alone, as Jews and other whites were busy protecting their own interests.

“I think everyone sees history through their own lens, and I don’t begrudge anyone from wanting to see what they want to see. This is what I see. This is what we see. And that should be valid. I’m not gonna argue history; I could, but I won’t.”
–Ava DuVernay, Director of the movie Selma (about Dr. Martin Luther King’s famous march), responding to criticism of her distortions of history.

 How did we get to the point of cartoonists being slaughtered? It’s a consequence of substituting fantasy for history, a consequence of pretending the history that you want to see is reality. When the people who shape how we look at history don’t care about accuracy, we lose the ability to learn from the past.  When the people who shape our view of current events don’t care about accuracy, we lose the ability to cope with the present.

 

MuslimTerroristOnPlaneSigneWilki-1

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Making It Safe to Rape Women

Ravages of War; Safe to Rape

Ravages of War
Original art by Esti Mayer, used with permission.

One of the most astonishing things about the allegations of sexual assault currently being aired against Bill Cosby is that so many went unreported for decades. If a crime is committed, the best time to gather evidence is while it is fresh. In Canada the cool and popular radio host Jian Ghomeshi is alleged to have been violently assaulting women for years. Yet no one spoke publicly about it until October, 2014. It’s safe to rape women if you’re a big enough superstar.

Or  have a star lawyer.

The criminal lawyer Edward Greenspan was eulogized extensively in the National Post. Described as a “legal superstar,” six of Greenspan’s most notable cases were summarized in the print edition. Oddly, in five out of six, the superstar’s clients went to jail. The notable who got off was Gerald Regan, the former Premier of Nova Scotia. Portraying the accusations of sexual assault as a politically motivated witch-hunt, Greenspan succeeded by “…reducing some of the accusers to tears.”

We are not going to second guess the courts as to Regan’s culpability. While he was acquitted of rape and attempted rape, many charges were dropped without going to trial. The accusations involved over thirty women, over a span of forty years.  How many of them were ‘reduced to tears,’ only to see their alleged tormentor walk free, declaring he’d been vindicated?

Nicht-Schulding; Not Guilty Original art by Esti Mayer, used with permission.

Nicht-Schulding; Not Guilty
Original art by Esti Mayer, used with permission.

Perhaps it’s not so astonishing that so many women hesitate to speak up about sexual assault. It only invites a second assault, this time in the court room, where the defense attorney may do his or her best to reduce the accuser to tears, or worse. If he’s good at it, maybe he’ll be considered a legal superstar, no matter how many other cases he loses, no matter how much he makes it safe to rape women.

In an upcoming post we’ll discuss the weaponization of rape.

 

 

As always, your comments are welcome.

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Attacking Films, Attacking Freedom

Many Americans, including President Obama, are righteously concerned about North Korea’s seemingly blatant attack on freedom in its hacking of Sony Pictures, and the threats of violence against any theater that dares screen the movie ‘The Interview.’ The film’s depiction of the assassination of Kim Jong-Il goes beyond acceptable standards for the North Korean dictatorship. The threats go beyond acceptable standards for attacking films, attacking freedom.

Americans should be more concerned though about subtle assaults on American freedom. Assaults where the attacker’s identity is not known, where it’s not even known that an assault is underway. And as in some forms of computer hacking, the participants in the attack don’t even know that they’re being used in one.

America Attacking Freedom

From the 1920’s the American film industry guarded itself carefully from government regulation by imposing self-censorship. Religious leaders applied constant pressure to ensure that Hollywood upheld their standards of morality, in the dress of the characters and the values they portrayed. By the 60’s, the counter-pressure of the demand for profits began to overwhelm the moral codes, to the point that contemporary actors are often expect to fully expose themselves, as they participate in simulated on-screen sex. Morality, restraint was framed as attacking freedom. Censorship and sex swapped positions, as the former became a dirty concept, in place of the latter. On “The Simpsons,” when Marge starts a campaign against a violent children’s television show, she ends up having to defend a Michelangelo statue against censorship. The lesson is that any restrictions or limits are wrong. A cartoon cat having its head blown off is equated to renaissance art.

The fact, in short, is that freedom, to be meaningful in an organized society must consist of an amalgam of hierarchy of freedoms and restraints.
~Samuel Hendel

The House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC), a committee of the U.S. House of Representatives worked intensely to keep Communist influences out of American cinema. Recognizing the tremendous influence of Hollywood on American culture and beliefs, the Committee members understood that films by people who supported socialist ideology could easily sway the public. The heavy-handed blacklists created by the Committee provided fodder for the progressive self-righteousness of the 60’s and 70’s.North Korea

In the 21st century, flesh and sex are ubiquitous in entertainment. If the House Un-American Activities Committee were to be examine contemporary Hollywood politics, it would blacklist virtually all of its actors, producers and directors. Today entertainment media conservatives have to keep their beliefs to themselves. Repression and censorship is a two-way street.

So free expression is attacked by an enemy state, North Korea. Free expression is attacked by religious American moralists, by secular American moralists. Congress suppressed liberal Hollywood. Now liberal Hollywood suppresses conservative Hollywood, to the point of driving it underground.

Emirates Attacking Freedom?

But there’s more. Although American religious leaders have lost any say about what goes into films, this doesn’t apply to the Arabian Gulf States. The United Arab Emirates, especially Abu Dhabi, is working hard to attract entertainment production, offering tremendous cost advantages, but with certain strings attached, such as not offending religious sensibilities. While there is little profit to be had in being sensitive to the concerns of American religions, there are significant incentives to follow the rulings of the Imams of the Emirates.

johannwolfgangvongoethe134023And the Emirates are not just limiting their cinematic influence to Muslim moral standards. Environmental propaganda, funded in part by Middle Eastern oil producers’ campaigns against Western energy independence. Many Arab nations stand to lose a substantial amount of income if fracking opens up an alternative fuel source inside the United States. The actor Matt Damon seemed sincerely surprised that his anti-fracking movie was funded by Mid-East oil interests. Most of the films Abu Dhabi participates in are innocuous, such as The Hundred-Foot Journey, or Men in Black 3. Some are overtly political.

No one will contest that the ruler of North Korea is a lunatic. No one will contest that a nuclear-armed nation led by a lunatic is a serious threat to America and the free world. It’s harder to accept, and more difficult to respond to threats to freedom from friendly nations- ones we do business with. It’s hard to accept that the entertainers we obsess about are collaborating with foreign governments against our interests.  That they are, however inadvertently, attacking freedom.

The entertainment industry— movies, television— play a large role in shaping the beliefs and aspirations of America, indeed of the world. Who is shaping, who is controlling the entertainment industry? Who is shaping America, and to what end?

Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.
~Thomas Paine

 

 

Your comments, as always, are welcome.
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All Your Deeds Are Recorded In The Book

Eighteen hundred years ago Rabbi Yehudah HaNasi taught:

What is the proper path a person should choose for himself…  Know what is above you: an eye that sees and an ear that hears, and all your deeds are recorded in the Book.
(Ethics of the Fathers 2:1)

While this is stating the obvious for believing Jews and Christians, for non-believers it’s an absurdity.  At least it was an absurdity till one or two decades ago.  Now it’s no longer a declaration of piety, but rather a statement of fact.  With the proliferation of security cameras, there are eyes all over the streets, inside buildings, elevators, buses…  All watched, all recorded in the book.

We think our private electronic communications are hidden from prying eyes, but anybody who has anything to do with Sony Pictures has discovered otherwise.  Supposedly hidden personal emails, cel phone numbers, hackedsalaries, social insurance numbers have been placed out in the open, where an irresponsible press has gone on a feeding frenzy, publishing any private embarrassing material they come across.

Anybody who uses Facebook should know the perils.  Many companies demand that potential employees hand over their Facebook passwords, so they can scrutinize their personal behavior and beliefs.  Many have lost their jobs over Facebook comments.

Search engines record everything you look for, so they can target you better with ads.  Google reads all emails on its servers, including every single Gmail document.  The company considers that users have no reasonable expectation of privacy.

Reading your private book

Reading your private book

Although such snooping was part of the mandate of the American National Security Administration, people were still stunned as to how much personal information the NSA gathered.  But with simple, off-the-shelf technology and a six thousand dollar drone, any interested eavesdropper can listen to your phone calls, break into your Wi-Fi network, and peruse anything there.  Everything is recorded in the book, and the book is open.

In his nineteen forty-eight dystopian novel 1984, George Orwell described a world where the government watched everything a

Big Brother Is Watching- Everything Is Recorded in The Book

Everything Is Recorded in The Book

person said or did.  “Big Brother is Watching You” was written as a warning, but has ended up as a model.  What is perhaps most disturbing is that people have become complacent about it.  We traded our privacy, our personal space, for the ability to instantly disseminate videos of cats.

We’re not likely to get rid of Big brother in the near future; cute videos are a big part of our lives.  Instant business and personal correspondence have become too important.  Our friendships with people we’ll never meet take up a big part of our lives.

Digitial technology has the ability to instantly record and store everything its eyes and ears pick up.  And they’re picking up more and more every day.  Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi’s concept of everything being recorded in the book is no longer scientifically absurd; humans have the technology to do it.  If there’s an omniscient God, It dwarfs humanity’s abilities in this field.

Another Rabbinic teaching offers a potential solution:

A fence for wisdom is silence.
(Ethics of the Fathers 3:17)

When you choose to speak, when you choose your path of action, do so in a way that you won’t be embarrassed if it turns out you are being recorded in the book— whether by the NSA, Google, or God.

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Bad Lessons: Learning With Closed Eyes

Ecole Polytechnique

École Polytechnique

Twenty five years ago a lone gunman walked into the École Polytechnique engineering school in Montreal, ordered the men to leave, and shot fourteen women.  It was a traumatic experience, not just for the victims and their families, but for all of Canadian society.

Two and a half decades later, we still look back in astonishment, trying to understand how such a thing happened.  We try to make it into a teaching experience, so that at least we’ve gained the ability to avoid repeating the tragedy.  Intellectuals, editorialists point to our society’s misogyny, and the lack of gun control as the prime lessons.

We’ve made progress in combating misogyny.  Our society expresses revulsion at allegations of hatred and violence towards photo trak #156131women.  Even a disproof of such allegations is greeted with hostility.  A lie, if it advances the cause, is more important than the truth.

The other Canadian battlefront declared by intellectuals and editorialists has not done as well.  The Conservative government cancelled the long-gun registry created in the aftermath of the Polytechnique massacre.  Many of the essays marking the Polytechnique anniversary bemoan this failure.

In New Guinea, in a remote native school taught by a local teacher, I watched a class carefully copy an arithmetic lesson from the blackboard. The teacher had written:

4+1=7

3-5=6

2+5=9

The students copied both his beautifully formed numerals & his errors. They were graded on their success in exact reproduction. The difficulty, of course, wasn’t merely that the memorized lessons lacked coherency & use, but that one couldn’t go beyond them & improvise. When I speak of my 5-times table, I don’t mean mine to do with as I like, but mine as long as I am obedient to it.”

Bad Lessons

The lessons of the Polytechnique massacre are also copied and memorized, from editorial to journalist, from advocate to gunsacademic.  Those fourteen women were killed, the bad lessons say, as a result of our misogynist, woman-hating society, as a consequence of the easy availability of guns.  No mention is made of the real name of the murderer, of his influences, of his ancestry.  That would be disobedient.

Marc Lepine was born Gamil Gharbi, son of an Algerian father, and a Quebecois mother.  He was thirteen when he abandoned his birth name.  Although his parents separated when he was eight years old, he experienced first-hand the violence and contempt towards women borne of North African Muslim culture.  He experienced first-hand the violence towards children borne of that culture.  Gharbi abandoned his father’s name, but could not abandon his lessons.

culture conflictCanadian intellectual society has learned that it must cleanse itself of misogyny, get rid of guns if it wants to avoid tragedies like the Polytechnique massacre.  Those are bad lessons, like teaching 4+1=7.   If we want to avoid such violence in the future, Canada must ensure that all those who want to make Canada their home are willing to abandon the cultural or religious values that promote or excuse violence against women, or against people who believe differently from them.  We must concede that Marc Lepine was Gamil Gharbi.  Not all cultures are equal.  Not all religions are worthy of respect.  As long as we keep our eyes closed, as long as we continue to memorize the politically correct bad lessons, the violence will continue.

 

 

Your comments are welcome
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Aboriginal Americans & the Jewish State

Hijacking Planes

In 1968, Palestinian terrorists hijacked an El-Al plane, and got away with it.  They used the tactic repeatedly after that,entebbe12 with varying degrees of success.  The most infamous incident was the forcing of Air France plane to Entebbe, Uganda, and Israel’s successful rescue of the hostages.

Hijacking Feminism

More such rescue operations are required these days, but not of aircraft.  The Palestinians and their Islamist allies have taken to hijacking peoples and

Betty Friedan

Betty Friedan

causes.  For example, in nineteen seventy five Betty Friedan, a feminist trailblazer, led the American delegation to an International Woman’s Year World Conference.  She was stunned by the conference’s anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism.  A 1980 Women’s Conference in Copenhagen had a huge portrait of Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini, a man at the forefront of the oppression of women, decorating the conference chamber.

Hijacking Gays

Queers Against Israeli ApartheidAlthough Israel is the only place in the Middle East where homosexuals are legally protected from persecution, Toronto’s annual gay pride parade has frequently featured the participation of “Queers Against Israeli Apartheid.”  That homosexuals would promote a movement that brutally oppresses them points to the effectiveness of Palestinian hijacking techniques.

Hijacking Aboriginal Americans- a special publication from the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research

Zionism, An Indigenous Struggle: Aboriginal Americans and the Jewish State

The collection of articles in this publication examines the relation between Aboriginal American and Jewish issues, focusing on the perceived attempt to hijack the Native American struggle for rights and recognition into the framework of Palestinian suffering.  Native Americans are viewed as the quintessential victims, having suffered genocide, theft of lands and consequent marginalization.  This fits into the casting of the Palestinians as victims of colonialism and oppression.

The hijacking doesn’t just take place through protest marches and conferences.  A Wisconsin Ojibwa Indian told me of her fear of the inroads Muslims have made in the local native communities, marrying Indian women and then using their new status to gain influence in native affairs and policies.  An expert in Southwest Indian art claims that Lebanese, Syrian and Palestinian Arabs have been buying Aboriginal American art businesses in Arizona and New Mexico, then selling “Navajo” art made in the Philippines.   When I asked him to write about this for our publication he refused, not even wanting his name mentioned.  “People have been killed,” he explained.

Elizabeth Warren

Elizabeth Warren photo by Tim Pierce

The left has long revered the oppression of native peoples, and tried to make the most of it.  Pretend aboriginal Americans such as Ward Churchill and Elizabeth Warren used ostensible native identity to advance their careers.  Steven Salaita, a minor academic who has written peans glorifying Palestinian suffering was supposed to join the American Indian studies program at the University of Illinois; his overt anti-Semitism got in the way.

Also getting in the way is that many Aboriginal Americans aren’t interested in perpetually playing the victim.   It doesn’t fit their traditions or values.  And while they may have been downtrodden in the past, they don’t want that to define their future.  They want to make their own lives.

The Navajo, for example want to improve the efficiency of their agriculture.  We provide a link below on how the Navajo nation is working with Israel to improve its expertise on efficient irrigation in an arid climate.

Ola Mildred Rexroat — an Oglala Lakota Warrior

Ola Mildred Rexroat — an Oglala Lakota Warrior

Other aboriginal Americans are businessmen, professionals.  Many, both men and women, have served in the military, and cannot accept the reflexive anti-Americanism of the Palestinian agenda.  Many are devout Christians, and cannot accept the Muslim agenda. But more than that, they are themselves.  Native Americans are not anybody else’s stooge or weapon.  The attention from the left may be enjoyable for a time, but ultimately it is another form of cooption, another form of exploitation.  The Palestinians may claim that they are “indigenous,” but as our contributors deftly show, there is no moral or historical equivalency with aboriginal Americans.

***

Most popular opinion agrees that mankind has a common place of origin, whether in the Garden of Eden in some unknown location between the Tigris and Euphrates, or somewhere in Africa.  If you go back far enough, everybody on earth has common indigenous roots.

It’s when we start going only part way back that things get more complicated.  Populations have never been stable.  The Bible (cf. eg. 2 Kings 17) tells us how the Assyrians displaced whole nations, replacing them with populations from elsewhere.  If we prefer non-Biblical sources, speakers of the Turkic language group (Ottoman Empire) can be found far from their Turkish homeland, in China and Siberia, where they are now indigenous peoples.

Examples can be found in North America as well, such as the disappearance of the Tunnit (Dorset)peoples of the north, displaced by Inuit and Indians.  The Cheyenne were pushed out of the Great Lakes area, in turn coming into conflict with other Native Americans and of course the U.S. Army.  The Inuit battled the Ojibwa, Cree and Athabaskan Indians for territory.  Warfare   and population transfer happened both before and after the onset European colonization.  Are Native Americans indigenous to the specific places they now inhabit?  A bigger question is “does this matter?”

If we adopt a synchronic criterion of indigenous status, that is, a definition at a specific point of time, then everyone and no one is indigenous.  Whether we shout “1967,” “1948,” “1867” (Canada’s independence from Britain), “1763” or “1492,” we run into problems when indigenous status reflects a particular slice of time.  This simplistic approach may be useful for sloganeering, but our contributors take a more sophisticated approach.

Ryan Bellerose and David Yeagley, each coming from opposing sides of the political spectrum, observe how Native American rights are an attractive issue used to legitimate other causes.  Many movements have tried to appropriate or incorporate oppression of Native Americans into their own causes.   As Margaret Atwood pointed out in Survival, her guide to Canadian literature, the Indians have become the quintessential victims, doomed to forever remain so.

Jay Corwin uses a literary approach to negate the victim/ perpetrator narrative as it constrains both Native Americans and Jews, relegating them to a mythological realm.   As characters in such a realm, both Jews and Native Americans are condemned, unable to act to bring about their freedom.  Perhaps the real sin of Israel in the eyes of the world’s media is its refusal to abide by the rules of fantasy.  According to this paradigm, Israel has no right to return fire when it’s attacked.  Fantasy characters don’t carry real guns.  Bellerose, Yeagley and Corwin argue that refusing to be a victim doesn’t make one into an oppressor.  The attempted appropriation of Aboriginal American issues is form of exploitation.

In his “conversation with an Indian friend,” Bellerose lays out the misconceptions that facilitate lumping Israel and the Jews with the oppressors of Native Americans.  Once that grouping is made, it’s easier to build Native solidarity with other people who claim to be victims of the same oppressors.

Robinson discusses the ultimate expression of those misconceptions in his account of the Ahenakew affair.  David Ahenakew was an important Native American leader, earning the Order of Canada for his achievements on their behalf.  He was also a rabid anti-Semite, schooled in hatred in both Germany and Gaza.  He was ultimately stripped of the Order of Canada, and his racism denounced by other native leaders.

Ambassador Baker, in his article The Indigenous Rights of the Jewish People, explains the significance of a people being indigenous, in terms of history, politics and law.  He uses this to examine concepts of legality and illegality of the presence of Jews in various parts of Israel, rejecting nomenclature that delegitimizes that presence.

Mara Cohen has indigenous status in two worlds: as Lakota Indian and a Jew.  Describing the potential of dual status as a source of conflict, she explains how it rather provides the ability to see reality through a number of perspectives, and to move with ease between cultures.

Uqittuk Mark’s connection to Israel is Biblical, rather than political.  A devout Christian, he went on an organized Israel pilgrimage to see the land of the Bible.  His attachment to the land transcends the politics, while his experience as an Inuk (Eskimo) gives him a clearer perspective to understand the struggles over it.

Finally, while Palestinians and their supporters work hard to appropriate Aboriginal American identity and victimhood, Howard I. Schwartz explains why the early European colonists were convinced that the native people they found in North America actually were Jews: descendants of the Ten Lost Tribes.  Schwartz explains the ideology which led the colonists to interpret native culture as primitive Judaism, and then ultimately reject that interpretation when its implications became clear.

 What Cause Do Aboriginal Americans Belong To?

The injustices imposed on Aboriginal Americans are dramatic.  Their past suffering, their current travails stir many hearts.  Their impeccable credentials as victims make them a useful prop for many issues.

But to appropriate Native American issues to support other causes is another form of imperialism: taking from them what is exclusively theirs.  Although it’s tempting to equate so-called Palestinian indigenous rights with Native American indigenous rights, the essays in this publication demonstrate that this is a false analogy.  It is more: another attempt to hijack, to steal what belongs to the Indigenous peoples of North America.

See the entire special publication of the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research.

 

Your comments are welcome
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A Deadly Epidemic, More Dangerous Than Ebola

ebola_map_sep5_fpThere are many diseases afflicting the world today.  Some have immediate and horrifying consequences while others may seem benign until it’s too late to do anything about them.  Health authorities stumble around, looking for ways to protect the populations, but run into barriers of cost, politics, human and constitutional rights.  We don’t know what deadly epidemic to be more afraid of, or whether some unknown ailment is going to do us in.

There are many frightful things that we’re aware of.  Ebola is highly contagious, and President Obama refuses to close the American border to people from the most affected regions of West Africa.  He’s even sent troops to help combat the disease, but with questionable protection they may be infected, or at least carriers when they return home.

The fast-spreading respiratory virus EVD68 sent over a thousand otherwise healthy children to hospital in a short period, killing a dozen.  The disease can be lethal and fast: a mother put her healthy four-year-old to bed, and he was dead by morning.  Many suspect that the flood of Central American children Obama allowed into the U.S. played a large role in the sudden spread of the disease.  They’re probably wrong.

Chagas disease is being called ‘the new AIDS.’  Spread by a bug that defecates a parasite into the victims’ bloodstream while

Chagas Symptom

Chagas Symptom

they’re asleep, it can lie dormant for decades before causing serious cardiac, esophagus or colon problems.  It is endemic to Mexico, Central America, and South America, where an estimated eight million people have the illness, most of whom do not know they are infected.  If untreated, infection is lifelong and can be life threatening.  It was once largely limited to Latin America, but now the illness is spreading north because of travel and immigration.  It’s estimated that four hundred thousand Americans are currently infected.

Smallpox Among the Aztec

Smallpox Among the Aztec

Smallpox was devastating to the American Indians, who possessed no immunity to the disease imported by early European colonists.  Populations were decimated, societies thrown into disarray.  In Europe the Black Death of the 14th century had similar effects.  Many say the plague was largely responsible for the collapse of feudalism.  Interestingly, some contemporary researchers have argued that the Black Death was Ebola, rather than bubonic plague.  The latter travelled too slowly, and the former matches the old descriptions of the

The Black Death

The Black Death

symptoms of the Black Death.

The Subtle Deadly Epidemic

There’s a much more subtle epidemic afflicting the world in the twenty-first century.  Like Chagas, many victims don’t realize they’ve been infected; there are no clear symptoms.  Yet just as the Black Death led to the end of feudalism, this plague can weaken, perhaps even bring an end to our contemporary society.

And of course, there are those who try to profit from it- not big drug companies, not insurance companies, but the people who create the policies by which America is run.  ObamaCare architect Jonathan Gruber said that the law was written in such a way as to take advantage of “the stupidity of the American voter.”

In the 2008 elections, Americans elected a young president with no job experience and few accomplishments to his name.  They made a man with no military experience into the Commander In Chief of what was, at the time, the world’s most powerful armed forces.  Their alternative was a war hero, decorated for his selflessness, with a long, distinguished career in government.  Obama’s track record as President is as distinguished as his list of accomplishments before becoming leader of the free world.

According to some polls Canada may be poised to elect a Prime Minister who’s done even less than Barack Obama, whose CV stops short at acting, substitute teaching, and leading a major political party.  A politician who is so shallow that he fulfilled the technical requirements of becoming a Muslim while visiting a mosque.  A would-be Prime Minister who wants Canada’s contribution to the fight against ISIS to be limited to advising their victims how to keep warm in winter.  Tell them how to use a blanket while they wait to be raped or beheaded.  It’s ludicrous, but  Justin Trudeau is ahead in the polls.

In the November 4th election, voters in Alaska, Oregon, and Washington, DC, approved marijuana legalization, joining Oregon, Washington State, Colorado and others in making it legally safe to toke.  It’s not news that stoned people are less capable of making informed decisions than sober people.  Losing the ability to make informed decisions, perhaps permanently, doesn’t seem to be a concern to voters.

And how is it that Christianity (whether the Church of England, the Catholic Church, German churches, or others), which is under attack from Muslims throughout the world, dedicates so much effort to extending the hand of peace to Islam?

Excerpt From Louisiana Literacy Test

Excerpt From Louisiana Literacy Test

In 1964, the state of Louisiana implemented a voter literacy test, with the purpose of disqualifying black voters.  The test was deliberately obscure and poorly worded, requiring a score of 100% to pass.  In 2014 the test was administered to a group of Harvard University students.  None of them would have been allowed to vote in 1964 Louisiana; they all failed.

In 2014, Jesse Watters asked ordinary Americans questions posed to new citizens about the basics of the American government; most were stumped.  What do the 13 stripes on the flag represent?  How many Senators are there?  Who was President of the United States during World War II?  Answers to the last one ranged from Ronald Reagan to George Washington.  Three out of twelve people passed the standard citizenship test.

The deadly epidemic is clearly out of control.  Stupidity is rampant.  It’s not just a matter of genetics, lack of education, too much alcohol or marijuana.  Stupidity is also a disease, or at least a viral condition.  An innocuous microorganism, previously known to affect green algae, was found to affect cognitive functions including visual processing and spatial awareness.   “Of the 90 participants in the study, 40 tested positive for the algae virus.  Those who tested positive performed worse on tests designed to measure the speed and accuracy of visual processing. They also achieved lower scores in tasks designed to measure attention.”  Or, as The Independent put it, it’s a virus that infects human brains and makes us more stupid.  (This is not a joke; it’s real)

This possibly explains why seemingly normal people think that George Washington was President of the U.S. during World War II.  Why many people support a potential Prime Minister who wants to teach people who are being raped, sold into slavery, or beheaded, how to use a blanket.  Why the architect of Obamacare knew he could count on the stupidity of the American public to get his legislation through.

animal testingThe deadly epidemic has the potential to destroy our way of life.  Firstly, stupid people will not be able to create the art, develop the technology, and build the cities that have advanced our civilization, improved our health, and lengthened our days.  Stupid people will demand that governments spend money it doesn’t have, while lowering taxes.  They can’t understand that arithmetic has universal relevance; governments aren’t exempt.

They will make bad decisions about what to eat, going along with every appealing food fad.  They’ll reject vaccines, based on simplistic pseudo-science.  They’ll campaign against the fossil fuels that power their cars, heat their homes, and are made into ubiquitous plastics.  They’ll oppose animal testing for new drugs, even when that means potential lifesaving medicines are delayed for vaccineyears, or kept entirely off the market because they can’t be proven safe.

If stupidity is a disease, then we can’t hold people responsible for their actions.  It provides another justification for expanding the social safety net.  Making dumb choices in one’s life will be just another sign of a disability, another excuse for doing nothing with one’s life.

Is there a cure for the stupidity virus?  We can’t look at the Centre for Disease Control for assurance, if we judge them according to their response to Ebola.  If we were conspiracy theorists, which we’re not, we could speculate that the CDC is actively spreading this deadly epidemic in order to help the administration advance its agenda.

Our society is facing viral stupidity, genetic stupidity and willful stupidity– ignoring truth in order to reach the ideologically correct response.  The bad decision making by ordinary citizens, the selective truths promoted by the media, the absurd agendas of politicians, western civilization seems headed towards dissolution and darkness.

Is there something we can do?  Vigilance seems to be the only non-medical response.  We can guard against willful stupidity and our own bad choices.

 

Your comments are welcome