If the first corollary to Godwin's Law is true -- whoever in a debate compares their opponent to Hitler first automatically loses -- then the Democrats might be in trouble come November. Within the space of a single week, California Democratic Party chief John Burton -- no stranger to strong language -- compared GOP campaign tactics to Joseph Goebbels's "big lie" at a state delegation breakfast on Monday; Pat Lehman, the president of the Kansas Democratic Labor Committee, also compared GOP voter fraud allegations with the "big lie" of the Nazis on Tuesday: "It's like Hitler said, if you're going to tell a lie, tell a big lie, and if you tell it often enough and say it in a loud enough voice, some people are going to believe you"; finally, on Wednesday, South Carolina Democratic chairman Dick Harpootlian joked that Republican governor Nikki Haley, who was conducting news conferences during the Democratic National Convention from a TV studio at the basement in the NASCAR Hall of Fame, was "down in the bunker a la Eva Braun."
Referring to the investigation of the firings of nine U.S. attorneys in 2006 as a "fake case," Savage also called Wexler a "low-life skunk" for "ripping into poor old Attorney General Gonzales."
During the hearing, Wexler repeatedly asked Gonzales to tell the House Judiciary Committee who had provided Gonzales with a list of U.S. federal prosecutors recommended for termination, including former New Mexico U.S. Attorney David Iglesias. According to a transcript of the hearing posted on Salon.com, when Gonzales claimed not to know who had compiled the list, Wexler asked, "It's a national secret, isn't it?"
As Media Matters for America has documented, Savage has a history of linking Democratic politicians and Nazis. On the April 23 broadcast of The Savage Nation, Savage described as "Hitler dialogue" a speech made by Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) in opposition to the April 18 Supreme Court ruling upholding the Partial Birth Abortion Act of 2003. On the May 2 broadcast of his show, Savage called Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) a "Nazi" and accused him of seeking "the final solution for conservatives on talk radio" by supporting the proposed Media Ownership Reform Act.
The Savage Nation reaches more than 8 million listeners each week, according to Talkers Magazine, making it the third most-listened-to talk radio show in the nation, behind only The Rush Limbaugh Show and The Sean Hannity Show.
From the May 11 broadcast of Talk Radio Network's The Savage Nation:
SAVAGE: You know why we're being outwitted by the Islamists? Because we have nitwits running the country.
CALLER: But don't you feel --
SAVAGE: We have nitwits who have no wits. All they have is power, no wits.
CALLER: So, you feel --
SAVAGE: What can we do about it? I don't know. Maybe you can write your congressman. Ha ha ha ha! Who are you going to write? Who's that idiot down in Florida, that moron who attacked our poor attorney general yesterday? That schmuck, Wexler. Did you see Wexler go at him?
SAVAGE: That low-life skunk, that schnorrer, Wexler, ripping into poor old Attorney General Gonzales on a non-case? That Wexler's the biggest schmuck. What was he, an ambulance chaser in Brooklyn before he went to Florida there and got the old-age vote?
CALLER: I would just like to encourage you, Michael. I seem like you seem a little down --
SAVAGE: No, no. Call Wexler up. He's a brave man. He's very brave to attack Gonzales. See if he'll go and investigate [unintelligible]. Big old Wexler, that lousy phony. Another liberal fraud from Brooklyn.
Wexler. See him ripping into Gonzales. A fake case if I ever saw one. Screaming at him. The last time I saw a politician scream at someone like that was in Nazi Germany in the kangaroo court trial against people who conspired to kill Hitler. Wexler really went crazy: "Oh, the tough guy." He has more hatred for Gonzales than he does for Osama bin Laden and the Islamists.
On the April 30 edition of his nationally syndicated radio show, Glenn Beck likened former Vice President Al Gore's fight against global warming to Adolf Hitler's use of eugenics as justification for exterminating 6 million European Jews. Beck stated: "Al Gore's not going to be rounding up Jews and exterminating them. It is the same tactic, however. The goal is different. The goal is globalization. The goal is global carbon tax. The goal is the United Nations running the world. That is the goal. Back in the 1930s, the goal was get rid of all of the Jews and have one global government." He continued: "You got to have an enemy to fight. And when you have an enemy to fight, then you can unite the entire world behind you, and you seize power. That was Hitler's plan. His enemy: the Jew. Al Gore's enemy, the U.N.'s enemy: global warming." Beck added: "Then you get the scientists -- eugenics. You get the scientists -- global warming. Then you have to discredit the scientists who say, 'That's not right.' And you must silence all dissenting voices. That's what Hitler did."
Later in the broadcast, Beck plugged his upcoming CNN Headline News special criticizing those who urge action on global warming, titled "Exposed: Climate of Fear." Beck said of the program: "There is no balance to the special. I want you to know right up front. I am not saying that this is the end all truth. I am saying that this is the credible other side. ... It's what scientists used to hold up and say, 'This is what we do.' It's what colleges and universities used to hold up and say, 'Diversity of thought.' But it doesn't happen anymore. And before it's completely shut down, and before we're all sent to respect camps, make sure you watch it on Wednesday."
Beck further claimed that Gore is using misinformation to mobilize support for action on global warming, stating: "[T]hey're telling us things in Al Gore's global warming special that are not true, that the seas will rise 20 feet. Even the U.N. says that's not true. So you got to have the fear, we're all going to die." In fact, as Media Matters for America documented, a report released in February by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a body of the United Nations, supported an assertion regarding sea levels in Gore's book An Inconvenient Truth (Rodale Books, May 2006). In the book, Gore wrote that if the West Antarctic ice shelf "melted or slipped off its island mooring into the sea, it would raise sea levels worldwide by 20 feet." He added that "the West Antarctic ice shelf is virtually identical in size and mass to the Greenland ice dome, which also would raise sea levels worldwide by 20 feet if it melted or broke up and slipped into the sea" (Page 190). The IPCC noted that "[c]ontraction of the Greenland ice sheet is projected to continue to contribute to sea level rise after 2100" and that "[i]f a negative surface mass balance were sustained for millennia, that would lead to virtually complete elimination of the Greenland ice sheet and a resulting contribution to sea level rise of about 7 m," which is equivalent to approximately 23 feet.
From the April 30 edition of Premiere Radio Networks' The Glenn Beck Program:
BECK: I go on vacation for three days, and I decide to take my family away. And I'm there at the beach, and we're reading. And I take -- my wife takes some magazines and stuff, and we take the books for the kids, and I take The Years of Extermination [HarperCollins, March 2007]. It's a new book. And I just -- 'cause it's, like, 800 billion pages thick. I'm just not going to have the time to read it. And I'm doing some research right now for some other thoughts that I have that are probably six months away from percolating.
And I'm reading this book trying to do some research. And what this book is, is how do you get people to kill people? How do you get -- not just Germany -- all of Europe to kill the Jews. To round them up and kill them. How do you do that? That's what this book is about. And it is a phenomenal -- it is scarier than Mein Kampf. I read Mein Kampf because -- that was my first foray into evil. And I read Mein Kampf, and I read it because I wanted to know -- did the Germans know?
Now, here's a book that outsold the Bible in World War II. Did they know? They clearly did. Why this book, The Years of Extermination, is more frightening is the whole world knew. And when you see what was in the papers at the time -- I kept reading it going, "Oh, my gosh. Oh, my gosh. I have read these things in some places about the Jews, in some places about what's coming in other places on global warming. I have seen these things happening right now." And I understand World War II much, much better because we're here again, gang. We are here again.
And I read this one part on global warming about how they got -- what was the first thing they did to get people to exterminate the Jews. Now, I'm not saying that anybody's going to -- you know Al Gore's not going to be rounding up Jews and exterminating them. It is the same tactic, however. The goal is different. The goal is globalization. The goal is global carbon tax. The goal is the United Nations running the world. That is the goal. Back in the 1930s, the goal was get rid of all of the Jews and have one global government.
You got to have an enemy to fight. And when you have an enemy to fight, then you can unite the entire world behind you, and you seize power. That was Hitler's plan. His enemy: the Jew. Al Gore's enemy, the U.N.'s enemy: global warming.
So, I read this paragraph -- and I must have read it, like, five times because I just kept going, "Oh, my gosh. Oh, my gosh." And I think I'm in a unique situation because I've heard from so many people, you've heard from so many people calling in and saying these things on the show.
Here's how they did it. First thing they did was they found a group of scientists that believed in eugenics, which basically is, "Breed your way to better people! Eugenics! Get rid of the defects, get rid of the races that aren't so strong. Breed a master race." For as insane, as insidious, and as out-and-out evil as it sounds today, believe it or not, in the 1920s and 1930s, that was cutting-edge science. And they said, "That is the answer. We can breed a master race." That's were the master race comes from: science and scientists. It was called eugenics.
So, Hitler took the master-race idea and eugenics -- an accepted, mainstream scientific belief -- and he got all the biggest scientists to come out and say, "This is it. This is the answer. It's the damn Jews. We get rid of the Jew bloodline, and we're fixed."
Now, how did you convince all of Europe to do it? You needed to have fear. You needed to have the fear of starvation. You needed to have the fear of the whole place going to hell in a handbasket. Which -- do we have that fear now with global warming? I mean, they're telling us things in Al Gore's global warming special that are not true, that the seas will rise 20 feet. Even the U.N. says that's not true. So you got to have the fear, we're all going to die.
Then you get the scientists -- eugenics. You get the scientists -- global warming. Then you have to discredit the scientists that say, "That's not right." And you must silence all dissenting voices. That's what Hitler did. That's what Al Gore, the U.N., and everybody on this global warming bandwagon -- all the way to RFK Junior, who has called me a fascist for doing it -- all the way over to the global warming special that happened over in London a couple of weeks ago that is fantastic.
They are now trying to -- are they suing or have they moved up to the arrest part yet, Stu [executive producer and head writer Steve Burguiere]? Where they are trying to punish the people for putting another view point out there -- on global warming. Then, the last step was to bring it into the schools. But here's the part that I read over and over again -- they didn't bring eugenics into the science classes. They brought it into the science class, but then they also brought it into the math class. They brought it into the literature class. They brought it into the history class. They brought it into P.E. They brought it into every single class. "This dirty Jew is trying to overcharge these Germans. How much of a profit will the Jew make by swindling money out of the Germans?" That -- those were actual problems that were introduced in math class.
What set the alarm bells off for me was, how many calls have I received in the last month from people saying, "My daughter was in art class. She's watching an Inconvenient Truth"? I just had a call last week, a guy says, "My son was in math, and he's watching Inconvenient Truth. What does An Inconvenient Truth have to do with math?"
My daughter is getting it as well. If you don't get on this train, the train is going to pull out of the station, and it's going to be moving at such a high rate of speed, you will not even be able to see the train. It has been foretold forever that that good will not understand bad, and bad will not understand good.
We are getting to a place where the average American is being fed so many lies at such a high rate of speed on so many different topics from immigration to our own government to even race relations to political correctness on Islamic extremism to global warming, that it is going to become an avalanche, and you're not going to be able to get way from it.
On Wednesday, the special that could end all specials -- the global warming special. There is no balance to the special. I want you to know right up front. I am not saying that this is the end-all truth. I am saying this is the credible other side. This is the other side of the argument. You want to hear about global warming -- great. Go watch the Al Gore special. It's the one your kids are being forced to watch. On Wednesday, force your kids to watch the other side of the debate.
It's what scientists used to hold up and say, "This is what we do." It's what colleges and universities used to hold up and say, "Diversity of thought." But it doesn't happen anymore. And before it's completely shut down, and before we're all sent to respect camps, make sure you watch it on Wednesday.
Oh, wait, wait, wait. I got a really good line that we can use. It's almost like it's from the Inconvenient Truth. Your very existence may depend on it.
Ah-ha. Is that good?
In her last column, Boston Globe columnist Ellen Goodman wrote: "Let's just say that global warming deniers are now on a par with Holocaust deniers . . . "
This is worthy of some analysis.
First, it reflects a major difference between the way in which the Left and Right tend to view each other. With a few exceptions, those on the Left tend to view their ideological adversaries as bad people, i.e., people with bad intentions, while those on the Right tend to view their adversaries as wrong, perhaps even dangerous, but not usually as bad.
Those who deny the Holocaust are among the evil of the world. Their concern is not history but hurting Jews, and their attempt to rob nearly six million people of their experience of unspeakable suffering gives new meaning to the word "cruel." To equate those who question or deny global warming with those who question or deny the Holocaust is to ascribe equally nefarious motives to them. It may be inconceivable to Al Gore, Ellen Goodman and their many millions of supporters that a person can disagree with them on global warming and not have evil motives: Such an individual must be paid by oil companies to lie, or lie -- as do Holocaust deniers -- for some other vile reason.
The belief that opponents of the Left are morally similar to Nazis was expressed recently by another prominent person of the Left, George Soros, the billionaire who bankrolls many leftist projects. At the World Economic Forum in Davos last month, Soros called on America to "de-Nazify" just as Germany did after the Holocaust and World War II. For Soros, America in Iraq is like the Nazis in Poland.
A second lesson to be drawn from the Goodman statement is that it helps us to understand better one of the defining mottos of contemporary liberalism: "Question authority." In reality, this admonition applies to questioning the moral authority of Judeo-Christian religions or of any secular conservative authority, but not of any other authority. UN and other experts tell us that there is global warming; such authority is not to be questioned.
Third, the equation of global warming denial to Holocaust denial trivializes Holocaust denial. If questioning global warming is on "a par" with questioning the Holocaust, how bad can questioning the Holocaust really be? The same holds true with regard to Nazism and the George Soros statement. Claiming that America in the Iraq War is morally equivalent to Nazi Germany in World War II trivializes the unparalleled evil of the Nazis.
Fourth, the lack of response (thus far) of any liberal or left individual or organization -- except to defend Ellen Goodman -- or from the Anti-Defamation League, the organization whose primary purpose has been to defend Jews, is telling. Just imagine if, for example, an equally prominent Christian figure had written that denying America is a Christian country is on a par with denying the Holocaust. It would have been front-page news in the mainstream media, the individual would have been excoriated by just about every major liberal individual and group, and the ADL would have cited this as an example of burgeoning Christian anti-Semitism and Holocaust trivialization. But not a word at the ADL on Soros's comments about de-Nazifying America or Goodman's Holocaust-denial comment.
Fifth, and finally, the Ellen Goodman quote is only the beginning of what is already becoming one of the largest campaigns of vilification of decent people in history -- the global condemnation of a) anyone who questions global warming; or b) anyone who agrees that there is global warming but who argues that human behavior is not its primary cause; or c) anyone who agrees that there is global warming, and even agrees that human behavior is its primary cause, but does not believe that the consequences will be nearly as catastrophic as Al Gore does.
If you don't believe all three propositions, you will be lumped with Holocaust deniers, and it would not be surprising that soon, in Europe, global warming deniers will be treated as Holocaust deniers and prosecuted. Just watch. That is far more likely than the oceans rising by 20 feet. Or even 10. Or even three.
CNN's Glenn Beck juxtaposed Hitler's "decree permitting euthanasia" with Clinton's plan for health care
On the November 14 edition of his CNN Headline News program, Glenn Beck juxtaposed Adolf Hitler's"decree permitting euthanasia" with Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's (D-NY) statement that"the whole issue of health care is coming back."
In his"Real Story" segment, Beck discussed a recent reported statement by leaders of the Church of England advocating that, according to a November 12 article in The Observer,"doctors ... be given the right to withhold treatment from seriously disabled newborn babies in exceptional circumstances." The article added that the church's decision stated that"'it may in some circumstances be right to choose to withhold or withdraw treatment, knowing it will possibly, probably, or even certainly result in death." Beck said the report was"a very slippery slope" and compared it to the case of"Baby Knauer," a blind and physically deformed infant who Beck claimed"was allowed to die" in Nazi Germany and whom Beck, echoing Discovery Institute senior fellow Wesley J. Smith, described as"the first victim of the Holocaust." Beck then juxtaposed Hitler's decision to create"a panel of 'expert' referees, which judged the infants and found out which ones were eligible for death" with a clip of Clinton stating her desire to find a"uniquely American solution" to health care in the United States:
BECK: Once he [Hitler] was through with the babies, the elderly were next. As it has been said over and over again with tragedies regarding the Holocaust: never again. So, when you see politicians making statements like this one yesterday --
CLINTON [video clip]: But the whole issue of health care is coming back. That may be a bad dream for some, but for others, it's a very welcome possibility, because we are on an unsustainable course. I think that we have to come up with a uniquely American solution.
BECK: OK. When you see statements like that, be afraid. Be very, very afraid. It's not a bad dream for me; it is a nightmare. Hillary, thanks, but no thanks. 1993 wasn't that long ago. I remember all too well that confused, nonsensical mess you tried to make of the greatest health care system in the world.
From the November 14 edition of CNN Headline News' Glenn Beck:
BECK: I tell you this because the news today that has come out from the Anglican Church of England -- they have reversed their stance that all life should be preserved at all costs. It is now calling for doctors to let seriously ill newborn babies die.
And if that wasn't evil enough, a top bishop of the church is also arguing that the high financial cost of keeping severely disabled children alive should be a factor in making life-or-death decisions. Cash? I hope that the 73 million worldwide members of the Anglican Church will remind their leaders that the whole"thou shalt not kill" thing -- kind of nonnegotiable, I'm thinking.
The real story is that the decision isn't about compassion; it's not about divine motivation; it is about the almighty dollar. And it is a very slippery slope that has led to some pretty diabolical medical practices not so long ago.
Now, look, as I said, I know it takes tremendous commitment of time, of resources, of love and compassion to care for a physically challenged child, but here's the thing: It doesn't matter what god you pray to or what party you vote for. Don't you think we, as human beings, as Americans, we should draw the line at making life-and-death decisions based on money, especially for the weakest and most fragile among us? In the name of all that is good and holy, I ask you, what kind of monsters are we prepared to become in the name of a buck?
We need to just look back, just not too far in our distant future, and the future of the -- or the not-too-distant past on this planet to see some pretty dark deeds that have been done. You know, I want to share a story with you about a baby that was born -- baby Knauer -- born blind, missing an arm and a leg. The baby -- the parents were just beside themselves.
The dad decided he's going to write and ask for some help because all the doctors weren't helping. They wrote somebody who is pretty powerful, and they trusted him. And they said,"Please, can you help us put our child into a better place? Please remove the burden on us."
Well, he saw the pictures. He read the letter, talked to the parents, flew out to meet with them, just filled with compassion, tears filling his eyes. He said,"I will personally give you my personal doctor to review the case." The doctor came back and said absolutely no justification for keeping this child alive. The baby was allowed to die.
Who was that compassionate, powerful man who so graciously put that baby boy to sleep? You probably guessed by now it was Adolf Hitler. Baby Knauer was the first victim of the Holocaust. Hitler later signed a decree permitting the euthanasia of disabled infants based on this case and creating a panel of"expert" referees, which judged the infants and found out which ones were eligible for death.
Once he was through with the babies, the elderly were next. As it has been said over and over again with tragedies regarding the Holocaust: never again. So, when you see politicians making statements like this one yesterday --
CLINTON [video clip]: But the whole issue of health care is coming back. That may be a bad dream for some, but for others, it's a very welcome possibility, because we are on an unsustainable course. [...] I think that we have to come up with a uniquely American solution.
BECK: OK. When you see statements like that, be afraid. Be very, very afraid. It's not a bad dream for me; it is a nightmare. Hillary, thanks, but no thanks. 1993 wasn't that long ago. I remember all too well that confused, nonsensical mess you tried to make of the greatest health care system in the world.
Your universal health care is only universal in one way: It stinks for everybody. Imagine getting your health care from the DMV. I don't think so. It will also, more importantly -- and here's how it ties into the real story -- will cripple us financially.
Fifty-three leading Holocaust scholars from around the world have sent a letter to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, denouncing his statements comparing Israel to the Nazis.
The signatories include two former senior officials of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, Dr. Michael Berenbaum and Dr. Walter Reich; Journal of Genocide Research editor Henry Huttenbach; Genocide Watch president Gregory Stanton; Prof. David S. Wyman, author of the The Abandonment of the Jews; and numerous other prominent scholars, including Daniel Goldhagen, Richard Rubenstein, and Jacob Neusner.
The protest was organized by The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies.
Kevin Barrett, a controversial adjunct at the University of Wisconsin at Madison who believes the U.S. government was responsible for 9/11, is in hot water again. This time he is being criticized for an essay in which he wrote “like Bush and the neocons, Hitler and the Nazis inaugurated their new era by destroying an architectural monument and blaming its destruction on their designated enemies.” Politicians in Wisconsin are outraged by the comparison between President Bush and Hitler. The Associated Press quoted Barrett as saying Tuesday that he didn’t mean to compare Bush and Hitler personally, but was comparing events. He added that “Hitler has a good 20 to 30 IQ points on Bush.” The university issued a statement from Provost Patrick Farrell saying that it did not endorse Barrett’s view
The Republican candidate for governor is drawing fire for campaign ads that suggest his Democratic opponent is so averse to the death penalty he would have spared Adolph Hitler from execution. The radio and TV ads feature victims' relatives who tearfully recount the crimes that killed their loved ones and say they don't trust Democrat Tim Kaine to administer the state's death penalty.
Kaine, who says his moral objections to capital punishment are rooted in his Roman Catholic faith, responded with an ad pledging to carry out death sentences "because it's the law."
One of the ads supporting Jerry Kilgore, Virginia's attorney general, cites a Richmond Times-Dispatch column that said Kaine had "suggested he would not favor sending even Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin or Idi Amin to the gallows."
A high school geography teacher in Aurora who compared a speech by President Bush to language used by Hitler and sparked an uproar in the Denver region will return to the classroom on Monday after an investigation by school officials. The teacher, Jay Bennish, who had been on paid leave from Overland High School, said he was trying to make students think in a lecture on Feb. 1 that a student recorded. The State Board of Education split on Thursday, four Republicans vs. four Democrats, over a resolution condemning Mr. Bennish. A bill in the State Senate would allow teachers to be fired for violating school district policies that require balanced presentations.
I recently received a letter from a former high school teacher of mine in Tel Aviv. He was liberated from the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp by a British Army unit in which my father served. Now, he was criticizing me for working on the government's plan to withdraw from 21 Jewish settlements in the Gaza Strip and four in the West Bank."How dare you pull Jews out of their homes?" he wrote.
"This is just like what the Nazis did to us!"
Unfortunately, I am no longer surprised when a Jew compares me and other Israeli officials to Nazis. It has become part of the rhetoric of those who oppose withdrawal, including the tiny minority who threaten violent resistance.
But my old teacher was not threatening me; he was crying out as if in the middle of a nightmare. My father, Chaim Herzog, eventually became president of Israel, and my teacher could not understand how his liberator's son could displace other Jews.
Last week, James Dobson of Focus on the Family proved that he lacks sufficient control to be pitching in the major leagues of public discussion and ought to be sent back to the minors. He compared embryonic stem cell research to Nazi death-camp experiments. I too (and millions of others) oppose broadened federal funding for stem-cell research, but Dr. Dobson has damaged rather than helped this cause. He has made conservatives look bad by suggesting that some are just as incapable of moral distinctions as the Howard Dean left--and just as unable to treat their opponents like human beings and not wicked moral dwarfs.
Meanwhile, those who popped up on cue to demand an immediate Dobson apology--such Jewish groups as the Anti-Defamation League, political groups like ProgressNow.org and many individuals--look silly and childish. Rarely has one wild pitch knocked so many people on the head. Thank you, Dr. Dobson; you can sit down now.
Dr. Dobson's analogy is grotesque. It's not just that embryos (as he himself noted later) feel no pain when they are destroyed. Not just that they leave no grief-stricken survivors in the sense that full-fledged human beings do, and rip no comparable hole in the community and the universe when they are murdered. Just as important is the gaping difference in the actors' motives. Stem-cell researchers want to help "mankind," defined to exclude embryos. Nazi experimenters wanted to help "mankind," defined to exclude Jews. If the first definition is wrong, it might nonetheless be proposed by morally serious persons. No morally serious person would go anywhere near the second, which epitomizes Nazi evil.
In arguing for the rightness of our war in Iraq, I often encounter left-wingers who insist that Saddam killed Iraqis and America's war does so, too--so what's the difference? It's tragic when any part of a national community grows incapable of moral distinctions. Drawing moral distinctions is what human beings are for. But Dr. Dobson's analogy is far more simple-minded than the pacifist position on Iraq.
Another Focus on the Family spokesman has said (after the first round of the Dobson-on-stem-cells affair) that "if anyone should be sensitive to the types of atrocities that are going on" in stem-cell research, "it should be the Jewish people." But maybe "the Jewish people" are exactly as sensitive as Dr. Dobson and his colleagues to the fate of embryos, and more sensitive to the suffering of human beings. Some Americans support expanded stem-cell research because they are frantic for science to find new cures for desperately ill friends or family members. Is Dr. Dobson so small-hearted that he can't cut such people a little slack? Can't concede that they are acting out of love, even if their conclusions are wrong?
Chinese academician Feng Zhaokui suggests in a recent article that the election victory of Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi raises fears that Japan is headed down the same path as Germany after 1933:
Japan's "9.11" election can't help but remind one of elections in Germany in January 1933. In several areas, the two elections are distressingly similar:
They both occurred after a country, defeated on the battlefield, took steps to wipe away national humiliation and rise again;
In both situations, a country shamed in military defeat felt persecuted, giving rise to politics of emotions, especially with regard to neighboring countries;
In both situations, this "public pathos" was tapped to become an essential element in the political contest for votes, in the suppression of rational politics, and in the push toward a hawkish road;
In both situations, a banner of reform was flown and the "ultra-appeal" of a party head was used to encourage voters to elect them; that party leader was a crafty, masterful actor during the electoral process;
Both situations used the dissolution of parliament to give the ruling party an overwhelming majority of seats;
They both want to revise the constitution to give their leadership and their successors more power, and to normalize the military by resurrect the nation's army.
While in Japan, and even within the LDP, it has not been merely one lone politician calling Koizumi "another Hitler," (primarily out of displeasure with his dogmatic political maneuvering), it is probably premature to conclude that, in his foreign affairs strategies, Koizumi is preparing to go to war as "another Hitler." We still need to carefully examine the kind of foreign affairs policies this new Koizumi administration follows after its ascension, and we must carefully examine what kind of successor Koizumi chooses.
In conclusion, the people of Asia and of the entire world should hope that Japan's "9.11" election is not the reappearance of a "Hitler phenomenon." At the same time, looking at the many similarities that exist between the two, we cannot help but be alarmed.
Jonathan Dresner offers a critique here.
Sen. Dick Durbin, an Illinois Democrat, took the Senate floor yesterday and likened American servicemen to Nazis (link in PDF):
When you read some of the graphic descriptions of what has occurred here [at Guantanamo Bay]--I almost hesitate to put them in the [Congressional] Record, and yet they have to be added to this debate. Let me read to you what one FBI agent saw. And I quote from his report:
On a couple of occasions, I entered interview rooms to find a detainee chained hand and foot in a fetal position to the floor, with no chair, food or water. Most times they urinated or defecated on themselves, and had been left there for 18-24 hours or more. On one occasion, the air conditioning had been turned down so far and the temperature was so cold in the room, that the barefooted detainee was shaking with cold. . . . On another occasion, the [air conditioner] had been turned off, making the temperature in the unventilated room well over 100 degrees. The detainee was almost unconscious on the floor, with a pile of hair next to him. He had apparently been literally pulling his hair out throughout the night. On another occasion, not only was the temperature unbearably hot, but extremely loud rap music was being played in the room, and had been since the day before, with the detainee chained hand and foot in the fetal position on the tile floor.
If I read this to you and did not tell you that it was an FBI agent describing what Americans had done to prisoners in their control, you would most certainly believe this must have been done by Nazis, Soviets in their gulags, or some mad regime--Pol Pot or others--that had no concern for human beings. Sadly, that is not the case. This was the action of Americans in the treatment of their prisoners.
We are fighting an enemy that murdered 3,000 innocent people on American soil 3 1/2 years ago and would murder millions more if given the chance--and according to Dick Durbin, our soldiers are the Nazis.
The International Committee of the Red Cross is granted a privileged status to inspect the conditions of prisoners of war and other detainees in return for confidentiality. But in recent years it has demonstrated a habit of selective media leaks damaging to American purposes. This is the backdrop for two recent incidents that make us think the U.S. should reconsider the ICRC's role.
The first concerns a story we heard first from a U.S. source that an ICRC representative visiting America's largest detention facility in Iraq last month had compared the U.S. to Nazi Germany. According to a Defense Department source citing internal Pentagon documents, the ICRC team leader told U.S. authorities at Camp Bucca: "You people are no better than and no different than the Nazi concentration camp guards." She was upset about not being granted immediate access shortly after a prison riot, when U.S. commanders may have been thinking of her own safety, among other considerations.
A second, senior Defense Department source we asked about the episode confirmed that the quote above is accurate. And a third, very well-placed American source we contacted separately told us that some kind of reference was made by the Red Cross representative "to either Nazis or the Third Reich"--which understandably offended the American soldiers present.
We called the ICRC last Wednesday for its side of the story, and a spokesman in Geneva confirmed that "there was a serious misunderstanding between the ICRC's team leader and [Coalition] authorities during our last visit to Camp Bucca." The ICRC also confirmed that "the team leader subsequently decided to leave the Iraq assignment."
The spokesman added, however, that he "can categorically say that the team leader did not in any sense compare the detention regime in Iraq to what happened in the Third Reich." Pressed as to whether he could rule out those terms having been used, the spokesman declined, citing the ICRC's practice of confidentiality when it comes to relations with the governments with which it works....
Charlie Rangel Provokes Ire of the Anti-Defamation League Likening U.S. Action in Iraq to the Holocaust
Abe Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League is outraged over a comment Rep. Charles Rangel made the other day, the New York Daily News's Lloyd Grove reports:
The Iraq war"is the biggest fraud ever committed on the people of this country. . . . This is just as bad as the 6 million Jews being killed," the 74-year-old Harlem Democrat insisted during a Monday radio appearance on the WWRL-AM morning show with Steve Malzberg and Karen Hunter."The whole world knew and they were quiet about it because it wasn't their ox being gored."
When interviewer Malzberg challenged Rangel's analogy, the congressman replied:"I am saying that people's silence when they know things terrible are happening is the same thing as the Holocaust." . . .
Foxman retorted:"It is so outrageous that I think he owes an apology not only to the families of the victims of the Shoah, but he also owes an apology to the soldiers who are fighting for freedom. . . ."
It's good that there are people like Foxman around who are paid to remind us that such comparisons are outrageous. For our part, we can barely muster the energy to roll our eyes. We have simply become desensitized to exorbitant liberal-left rhetoric. Bush = Hitler! Little Eichmanns! Guantanamo is a Gulag! By now what can one offer in response but a weary"whatever"?
''Referencing Hitler was meant to dramatize the principle of an argument, not to characterize my Democratic colleagues,'' Santorum, the No. 3 Republican in the GOP leadership in the Senate, said of his remarks Thursday.
Passions have been running high as senators argue over whether Republicans should allow the out-of-power Democrats to use Senate filibusters to effectively thwart President Bush from reshaping the nation's courts to his liking.
Republican John Warner and Democrat Robert Byrd are trying to avert that showdown, but Senate centrists have not been able to compromise on controversial nominees like Owen.
Byrd came under fire in March for comparing Hitler's Nazis and the Senate GOP plan to block Democrats from filibustering. Santorum, a Pennsylvanian, criticized Byrd's remarks at the time, saying the Nazi references ''lessen the credibility of the senator and the decorum of the Senate.''
But on Thursday, Santorum said that Democratic protests over Republican efforts to ensure confirmation votes would be like the Nazi dictator seizing Paris and then saying: ''I'm in Paris. How dare you invade me? How dare you bomb my city? It's mine.''
Santorum later said in a release that his remark ''was a mistake and I meant no offense.''
The Republican Jewish Coalition applauded the statement. ''Sen. Santorum is sensitive to the effect of his words and the inappropriateness of the analogy,'' Executive Director Matthew Brooks said.
... Rumor has it that there is a plot afoot to curtail the right of extended debate in this hallowed Chamber, not in accordance with its rules, mind you, but by fiat from the Chair--fiat from the Chair.
The so-called nuclear option--hear me--the so-called nuclear option-- this morning I asked a man, What does nuclear option mean to you? He said: Oh, you mean with Iran? I was at the hospital a few days ago with my wife, and I asked a doctor, What does the nuclear option mean to you? He said: Well, that sounds like we're getting ready to drop some device, some atomic device on North Korea.
Well, the so-called nuclear option purports to be directed solely at the Senate's advice and consent prerogatives regarding Federal judges. But the claim that no right exists to filibuster judges aims an arrow straight at the heart of the Senate's long tradition of unlimited debate....
Unfettered debate, the right to be heard at length, is the means by which we perpetuate the equality of the States. In fact, it was 1917, before any curtailing of debate was attempted, which means that from 1789 to 1917, there were 129 years; in other words, it means also that from 1806 to 1917, some 111 years, the Senate rejected any limits to debate. Democracy flourished along with the filibuster. The first actual cloture rule in 1917 was enacted in response to a filibuster by those people who opposed the arming of merchant ships. Some might say they opposed U.S. intervention in World War I, but to narrow it down, they opposed the arming of merchant ships.
But even after its enactment, the Senate was slow to embrace cloture, understanding the pitfalls of muzzling debate. In 1949, the 1917 cloture rule was modified to make cloture more difficult to invoke, not less, mandating that the number needed to stop debate would be not two- thirds of those present and voting but two-thirds of all Senators elected and sworn. Indeed, from 1919 to 1962, the Senate voted on cloture petitions only 27 times and invoked cloture just 4 times over those 43 years....
Many times in our history we have taken up arms to protect a minority against the tyrannical majority in other lands. We, unlike Nazi Germany or Mussolini's Italy, have never stopped being a nation of laws, not of men. But witness how men with motives and a majority can manipulate law to cruel and unjust ends. Historian Alan Bullock writes that Hitler's dictatorship rested on the constitutional foundation of a single law, the Enabling Law. Hitler needed a two-thirds vote to pass that law, and he cajoled his opposition in the Reichstag to support it. Bullock writes that ``Hitler was prepared to promise anything to get his bill through, with the appearances of legality preserved intact.'' And he succeeded.
Hitler's originality lay in his realization that effective revolutions, in modern conditions, are carried out with, and not against, the power of the State: the correct order of events was first to secure access to that power and then begin his revolution. Hitler never abandoned the cloak of legality; he recognized the enormous psychological value of having the law on his side. Instead, he turned the law inside out and made illegality legal.
That is what the nuclear option seeks to do to rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate....
In response to Byrd's remarks, according to a report by the Associated Press, a Jewish Republican group accused Sen. Byrd of making an"inappropriate and reprehensible" comparison:
Byrd spokesman Tom Gavin denied that Byrd, D-W.Va., had compared Republicans to Hitler. He said that instead, the reference to Nazis in a Senate speech on Tuesday was meant to underscore that the past should not be ignored."Terrible chapters of history ought never be repeated," Gavin said."All one needs to do is to look at history to see how dangerous it is to curb the rights of the minority."
Abraham H. Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, said Byrd's remarks showed"a profound lack of understanding as to who Hitler was" and that the senator should apologize to the American people. He called the comparison"hideous, outrageous and offensive."
"With his knowledge of history and his own personal background as a KKK member, he should be ashamed for implying that his political opponents are using Nazi tactics," said Matt Brooks, executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition.
Byrd has repeatedly apologized for his Klan membership. Now 87 and the Senate's longest-serving member at 47 years, he prides himself on his knowledge of history and makes historical references frequently during debates.
Brooks also attacked as"disgusting" Byrd's remark that"some in the Senate are ready to callously incinerate" senators' rights to filibuster. The comment came amid several references by Byrd to the"nuclear option."
"There is no excuse for raising the specter of the Holocaust crematoria in a discussion of the Senate filibuster," Brooks said.
When it gets right down to it, both the Islamofascists and the modern Moore-ish left are terrified of the freedom of ideas.
Hamilton College Controversy Over an Invited Speaker Who Compared America's Policy in Iraq to Policies Pursued by the Nazis
Hamilton College ... is embroiled in a controversy. An invited speaker - Ward Churchill, a professor of ethnic studies at the University of Colorado, Boulder - has compared American policy in Iraq to that of Nazi Germany. He also referred to Adolf Eichmann, the architect of the Nazis' plan to exterminate the Jews, when he called the trade center victims "little Eichmanns."
For Nancy Rabinowitz, the Hamilton professor who invited Professor Churchill, the larger issue has become one of free speech
For the college president, Joan Hinde Stewart, another issue has become the national reputation of Hamilton and the future of its $175 million capital campaign, which The Wall Street Journal in a recent editorial urged people to boycott.
For Professor Churchill, the issue has become his career. He has spoken for years in relative obscurity. Now, he said, the Board of Regents in Colorado plans to meet on Thursday, the day of his appearance at Hamilton, to discuss disciplinary action.
All of this began last summer, when Professor Rabinowitz - who teaches comparative literature and directs Hamilton's Kirkland Project for the Study of Gender, Society and Culture - asked Professor Churchill to talk about American Indian activism, his area of expertise. He accepted and agreed to a speaking fee of $3,500.
The Kirkland Project also invited the writer Dorothy Allison, the Appalachian fiddler Dirk Powell and others as part of the theme, "The Intersections of Class, Race, Gender, Sexuality and Nationality."
Later, Professor Rabinowitz began receiving e-mail messages from colleagues who had learned that Professor Churchill had written in a published essay that those killed in the trade center had ignored their role in American foreign policy. "They were too busy braying, incessantly and self-importantly, into their cellphones, arranging power lunches and stock transactions, each of which translated, conveniently out of sight, mind and smelling distance, into the starved and rotting flesh of infants," he wrote.
"If there was a better, more effective, or in fact any other way of visiting some penalty befitting their participation upon the little Eichmanns inhabiting the sterile sanctuary of the twin towers, I'd really be interested in hearing about it," he added....
... Professor Churchill said in an interview, "My reaction is astonishment [at the controversy over his comments]. This is a three-year-old piece that has been spun mercilessly and distorted. The comparison was of technocrats. Eichmann is someone who, after all, killed no one. He made the trains run on time."
"Of course I have sympathy for the World Trade Center victims," he added, "the same sympathy I have for victims who are Iraqi and Palestinians."...