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Israeli Society, the Holocaust and its Survivors jews and comunists

jan peczkis|Wednesday, November 23, 2016

This work begins with basic information on the Holocaust. The reader learns that, although the Nazi decision to exterminate the Jews was not made before spring 1941 (p. 14), Chaim Weizmann had quoted the (possibly talismanic) figure of 6 million Jewish victims, as early as 1939. (p. 13). [The 6 million figure had been suggested decades earlier.]

In this book, much is written about the attempted “Jews for trucks” deal, between Joel Brand and Adolf Eichmann.(p. 26, 42, 44, 147, 314). Had it come to pass, a million Jews in Nazi-ruled Europe could have been freed.

A major theme of this book is “pinning the blame” on someone for “not doing enough” during the Holocaust. In 1943, Yitzhak Gruenbaum inveighed against Diaspora Jews for their “passivity”. (p. 305). During the Kasztner trial, Israeli rightists accused the Mapai, the dominant party during the 1940’s, “of cooperating with the Nazis and sacrificing European Jews for Zionist gains.” (p. 350). Orthodox Jews make similar accusations against Zionist Jews. Perhaps the most widely-read example of this is The Holocaust Victims Accuse: Documents and Testimony on Jewish War Criminals. [See my review].

Evidently not wanting to feel left out of the “blame game” for "Holocaust inaction", author Porat excoriates Great Britain and the United States. (e. g, p. 42). On the other hand, she defends the leadership of the Yishuv (Jewish community in Eretz Israel in 1918-1948) by claiming that it was virtually powerless to alter the outcome of events in Nazi-German-ruled Europe. [Perhaps, just perhaps, the same realization will, one day, be recognized with regards to the Poles in German-ruled Europe, and the Polish Government-in-Exile in London, thus finally ending the rather silly accusations of them “not doing enough” during the Holocaust.]

Rabbi Elazar Menachem Man Schach, in 1991, had this explanation for the Holocaust: It was God’s punishment, of the Jews, for their sins in the last few centuries. (pp. 372-373).

I now focus on some specialized subjects of interest in more detail:


Although the “Jews are Adam” construct is not taken to mean that Jews are human and the GOYIM are animals, it still has elitist connotations. This can be seen from the following statements by Porat, said in regards to the Shoah, (quote) Buber opened the meeting. He described the campaign being waged in the world as one of the indefatigable attempts of the animal in man to return to the forest, to the instinctual primeval times when humanity and the Holy Spirit had not yet appeared. In this perennial battle, the people of Israel were to fulfill a distinct role: it was AM ADAM, the people of humanity (people-incarnating humanity), the perennial symbol of humanity and the Divine Spirit; the antithesis of the raging savage powers. (unquote)(p. 68).


Porat writes, (quote) Indeed, it was immigration from Poland, including the influx of pioneers, that brought to Palestine most of its newcomers between the two world wars. The pioneering immigration would probably have assumed much larger dimensions had the British Mandatory government allowed it, and had the Arab riots of 1936-39 not resulted in further restrictions. (unquote)(p. 223).

The implications are ironic. Those Britons who moralize about Poles’ past treatment of Jews should look no further than themselves.


Interestingly, some of the Jews in the Yishuv went as far as repeating, what usually are considered anti-Semitic tropes, in reference to Jewish arrivals from Poland, (quote) Even the usually restrained and laconic Shaul Meirov (Avigur) told the Mapai Central Committee in May 1943 that it was important for the Yishuv to understand that, “…the people who came from there are different…completely different…regarding their concepts of morality and the relations between people, between men and women…the propensity to inform is widespread among them…in commerce they engage in everything possible, the children buy and sell in dollars, the corruption is horrible. I am incapable of describing for you even a fraction of what goes on, the prostitution is terrible---among Poles and among the Jews, it is impossible to know where it is worse.” (unquote)(p. 325).


The antagonism of many Orthodox Jews towards the Zionists is commonly framed in terms of the Orthodox Jewish belief that only the Messiah, sent by God, can legitimately restore the Jewish state. It goes much deeper than that. Porat quips, (quote) The accusations have their origin in the worldview of the ultra-Orthodox. All Zionists are regarded as heretics and atheists, but there is a distinction between socialist-atheist Zionists who consciously blaspheme religion, and petit-bourgeois and revisionist Zionists who are considered more moderate in their attitudes toward religion and tradition…Secularism is a blasphemy: a denial of the very principle of religion (the existence of God) is a terrible sin, which naturally spawns all other sins. (unquote)(p. 365, 367).

The situation harks back to a time when the gulf between the religious and non-religious was much more pronounced than it is today. It also helps the reader understand the much-quoted and much-condemned 1936 statement, by Polish Cardinal August Hlond, on Jews as freethinkers, vanguards of Bolshevism, and a bad influence on morals.


The influence of Communism among Jews is commonly marginalized as membership in the Communist Party. It was actually much broader than that. Porat characterizes the Hashomer Hatzair, a Zionist Socialist pioneering movement, as having a “pro-Soviet ideology”. (p. 235). Dina Porat adds that, (quote) Ha-Shomer Ha-Tza’ir had a quite different view, one that stemmed from its identification with the Soviet Union. (unquote)(p. 228).

Hashomer Hatzair backed away from this, and adopted a more conventional Zionist orientation, during the years of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact. (p. 228). However, its love affair with Communism continued, (quote) The crucial activity should be the formation of a Soviet-socialist regime on the ruins of the British Empire. Once such a regime was established in the Jewish communities in Europe as well as in Palestine, the Soviet Union would recognize Zionism and all problems would thus be settled. (unquote)(p. 343).

The informed reader can see the parallel between Hashomer Hatzair’s vision of “Soviet-socialist regime…in the Jewish communities in Europe” with Polish concern about, and antagonism towards, the Zydokomuna (Judeo-Bolshevism). This especially came about when much of the Soviet-imposed Communist puppet government over Poland (1944-on) was Jewish, thus effectively fulfilling Hashomer Hatzair’s vision of “Soviet-socialist regime…in the Jewish communities in Europe”.


I could not believe what I was reading! Dina Porat actually believes the canard that the Nazi Germans treated the Jews of Poland more brutally, than those of western Europe, because the locals were more prone to support such measures. (p. 15). Dina Porat is a historian, and should know better. To begin with, even the most anti-Semitic Poles never even imagined, let alone supported, the physical extermination of the Jews. In addition, the Germans reckoned the Poles a despised UNTERMENSCHEN. To even hint that the Germans either needed or wanted Polish approval, for German policies in German-conquered Poland, is beyond ludicrous. It is macabre.
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