The Holocaust Industry (letter)by Mark BrahamNews Weekly
, February 26, 2005
C.J. Ward quotes Frank Knopfelmacher's denunciation of "the Holocaust Industry" (News Weekly
, February 12, 2005), possibly unaware of the more important, erudite and detailed criticism levelled by the late Chief Rabbi Lord Immanuel Jakobovits in his lecture on "Religious Response to the Holocaust", given in London in 1987.
In a learned review of Jewish responses to past tragedies, he wrote:
"... the Holocaust has now generated an entire industry, with handsome profits for writers, researchers, film-makers, monument-builders, museum-planners, conference-organisers and even politicians seeking to dramatise 'Never again!' slogans. Partners in this big business also include some rabbis and theologians, with rewarding yields of fame and royalties."
The communist Holocaust preceded Hitler's: it began in 1917 when the teaching of Judaism to Jewish children became a capital crime: both grandfathers of my Rabbi's wife were killed for this Soviet crime.
Soviet Jews who had abandoned their faith or practised it unobtrusively were tolerated as the last generation of a dying cult. Atheism was the future and such was the intermarriage, the children not being raised as Jews, that the end of Soviet Jewry was predictable.
Paradoxically, Stalin supported the creation of the State of Israel, possibly under the impression that democratic nationalism, with a strongly left-wing majority under Ben Gurion, would isolate and ultimately eliminate authentic Judaism.
The conclusions reached by the Chief Rabbi in his lecture were:
"To me, the meaning
of being a Jew has not changed with Auschwitz. What has changed is that millions of Jews are now being threatened by self-liquidation even more than by oppression, and it is this threat which the legacy of the Holocaust summons us to counter with unprecedented urgency and vigour.
"We must shift the current emphasis on the survival of Jews to the survival of Judaism. For without Judaism, Jewish survival is both questionable and meaningless."
This exquisite logic is resented by non-practising Jews as well as breakaway Jewish movements such as Reform, Liberal and Conservative.
If Jews have not equated the communist holocaust of mass murders in eastern Europe with that perpetrated by the Nazis, it is because so few countries helped Jews escape. Many did the reverse; Italy and Bulgaria were exceptions to the rule.
As for the rehabilitation of Stalin, authentic Judaism teaches respect for Christians. Even idolaters are preferred to atheists.
Rabbi Avigdor Miller, a Torah sage, taught that the worldwide presence of atheists means that this generation is more wicked than that of the Flood.Mark Braham,
Rose Bay, NSW