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Confusion is understandable...

Reader comment on item: Nazi Propaganda for the Arab World
in response to reader comment: Fact check 2 (easier)

Submitted by AEWHistory (United States), Feb 28, 2011 at 22:22

Confusion on this subject is understandable, but it is possible to disentangle this complex web and understand many of the processes that led to Holocaust (at least to the extent that it is possible to understand complex systems and make general rules that explain there function; in other words, there will always be small exceptions).

So, in regard to, say, Albania, consider this: you argue that Catholic Italy and Muslim Albania were safer for Jews, but since Italy ruled Albania in this period--and hence it was Italian policies that were enforced in Albania--there was little anti-Semitism to test there. In other words, the same Italian policies that protected Italian Jews (only Italian Jews btw, not immigrant Jews) also generally protected local Jewish communities that were citizens of areas ruled or governed by the Italian armed forces. An excellent example is southern France where the Italian army made exceptional efforts to protect the Jewish community. So it is quite possible that even if the Albanian Muslim community had acted out against Jews the Italians would have intervened until they were removed.

What I think you must take away from this is two things: the anti-Semitism of the populace was just a mechanism, albeit an important one, that made it more difficult for Jews to avoid the Holocaust.... but that this was irrelevant given who was in charge. Hence it was the ruling power that made the Holocaust possible and it was the possibility to either participate in the Holocaust, or oppose it, that exposed underlying anti-Semitism.

What I am trying to say is that you need to consider more than religion, even when religion is the main subject under consideration. For instance, in France there was a plentiful pool anti-Semitism that the Germans were able to tap into in order to further the goals of the 'Final Solution' and yet even in France there existed historical circumstances that mitigated this. The Huguenots, for example, had a history of conflict with Catholics and of persecution, so it was understandable that a small but vibrant community of Huguenots would feel compelled to defend some Jews for these reasons (opposing the Catholic community and empathizing with persecution). At the end of the war this was reinforced by the Italian army in the south of France for totally unrelated reasons: Italy had little history of anti-Semitism (especially compared to virtually every culture surrounding it) and the Italians had ample reason to thumb their noses at the Germans. But, you see, some of these reasons have absolutely nothing to do with religion, or Jews for that matter....

One last point: while the narrative is finally changing to include the Arab and Muslim roles in the Holocaust, one of the issues that have always bothered me is that if you have the desire and willingness to kill someone, but you do not have the opportunity, this does not magically negate that simple fact that the desire and willingness was, and perhaps is, there. There is plenty of evidence showing Muslim/Arab complicity in the Holocaust (and, to be fair, some examples of righteousness) that it is time to ask if the only difference between the Germans and the Arabs is one of opportunity. After all, Germans, Italians, Romans, etc. all had clear and massive opportunity to participate in the Holocaust--no one has ever denied this--and yet the Italian role in the Holocaust is remarkably small given that they were actually allied to Hitler. Conversely, while the Romanians were allied, so were the Hungarians, and the two governments behaved, IMHO, completely differently. So I think that the relative lack of opportunity should be a key modifier in evaluating Arab complicity in the Holocaust...... (and the British willingness to cave to Arab demands limiting Jewish emigration etc.).

Well, that was a long two cents, but hopefully that is more illuminating than muddying,



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Reader comments (44) on this item

Title Commenter Date Thread
Moslem Propaganda No Different From Nazi Propaganda [98 words]Lujack SkylarkAug 11, 2012 14:32197821
1Israel's Ancient History [2172 words]TomAug 13, 2012 10:44197821
Terrorist in Germany prior to 9.11 [68 words]segudMay 13, 2012 22:21195596
A Tale of Two Cultures [553 words]Fred BaehrMar 14, 2011 21:04183423
Right you are [28 words]john b vFeb 14, 2012 18:46183423
Good review [9 words]Derek BauerFeb 28, 2011 19:02183058
5US Congress 1939: Fear if 'Bibleland becomes Koranland' - Nazi - Islamic alliance menace [652 words]IlyaJan 5, 2011 16:15181576
1ARAB MUSLIM NAZISM - DOCUMENTATION [17428 words]AlNov 29, 2010 02:38180551
Great historical information, Al [47 words]GrueneFeb 14, 2012 17:53180551
2Muslims stole the idea of 9-11 [99 words]stanleyFeb 16, 2012 07:42180551
Arab-Nazi alliance [67 words]jerseyMar 1, 2012 08:53180551
Much Russian propaganda too [59 words]stanislausMar 25, 2012 00:26180551
Something very wtong here [80 words]stasApr 29, 2012 09:08180551
Nazis and Islamists have much in common [84 words]StasJun 27, 2012 09:07180551
Al Husseini and Auschwitz [48 words]BellarOct 25, 2015 10:01180551
ARAB NAZI PARTY / PARTIES [415 words]DaisyNov 5, 2010 01:17179934
Historical Perspective [277 words]Fred BaehrOct 27, 2010 23:56179682
Fact check [65 words]Adam McOct 1, 2010 12:55178867
Fact check 2 (easier) [141 words]
w/response from Daniel Pipes
Adam McOct 4, 2010 09:24178867
response [55 words]Adam McNov 5, 2010 11:56178867
Confusion is understandable... [643 words]AEWHistoryFeb 28, 2011 22:22178867
Is history repeating itself? [103 words]DasteAug 1, 2010 11:34176221
The Swastika in Pursuit of the Crescent [97 words]ArlindaMay 3, 2010 03:44172026
The allies remained silent in the 2nd. World War out of fear of making the muslims angry. . hmm...sounds familiar to what we are doing now.... Apr. 2010. [103 words]Phil GreendApr 27, 2010 15:19171771
1Jihadi Jew-scapegoating [224 words]SC4Z (Secular Christians for Zion)Apr 20, 2010 04:02171476
Hitler as the messiah [91 words]CL MillerApr 18, 2010 20:57171436
Skewed perspective [292 words]Alain Jean-MairetApr 16, 2010 01:41171372
Correction: Islam is the bad thing, not Islamism [30 words]Alain Jean-MairetApr 17, 2010 00:23171372
Islam is a religion for merciful and kindness [52 words]kadar haybeMay 26, 2010 19:19171372
2Islam is a religion of treachery, murder and blasphemy [29 words]Alain Jean-MairetMay 28, 2010 00:22171372
Jeffrey Herf's thesis is probably not true [161 words]PPSApr 16, 2010 00:41171370
1Well That's the Point [312 words]TimothyOct 1, 2010 13:08171370
Suggesting an additional and excellent resource [56 words]Karen LevinApr 15, 2010 17:53171352
Mr Pipes proves how deep the Jew hatred of Jihadi Islam is! [70 words]Ben ZalmanApr 15, 2010 16:18171350
Does US understand the evil, vicious mind of Jihad? [48 words]LoriMay 6, 2010 15:40171350
"The mentality of Jihad" [77 words]Ben ZalmanMay 8, 2010 21:16171350
The Nazis and Islam [10 words]KenApr 15, 2010 11:59171344
1Islam and Nazism [383 words]Prof. Paul EidelbergApr 15, 2010 09:58171341
1When Hitler and Muhammed met [190 words]Victor TordjmanApr 15, 2010 08:05171337
2ISLAMO - NAZIS / Factual history [3148 words]SophiaJun 3, 2011 15:18171337
Double Standard.. [291 words]Jack W.Jul 5, 2014 19:17171337
Radical Islam as fascism [56 words]George AdamowiczApr 15, 2010 07:49171336
Was oil the target and propaganda just a ploy? [414 words]Mark J.Apr 15, 2010 03:42171331
2"Real Politik" and race ideology [407 words]Kiel HesselmannApr 19, 2010 17:46171331

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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