Florian Cramer on Sat, 20 Apr 2002 13:11:01 +0200 (CEST)

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[Nettime-bold] Re: <nettime> A European speaks far better than I:

Am Fri, 19.Apr.2002 um 20:09:12 -0400x schrieb Gita Hashemi:
> I find it shameful that Europeans who haven't managed yet to come to 
> terms with their own history of anti-Semitism and to deal with its 
> lingering effects get so totally confused about how to address the 
> current issues particularly the dangerous rise of racism in national 
> and international social-political currents.

On another list, I reacted to Alan's posting of Oriana Fallaci's article
as follows:

: who want the destruction of Israel)--Jews in Italian cities are once again
: afraid. And in French cities and Dutch cities and Danish cities and German
: cities, it is the same. I find it shameful that Jews tremble at the passage
: of the scoundrels dressed like suicide bombers just as they trembled during
: Krystallnacht, the night in which Hitler gave free rein tothe Hunt of the

This sentence does distort it quite a bit. As far as can tell from
observing the situation here in Germany and, through the media, in
France, the physical violence against jews in Europe has been exercized
exclusively by Arab/Muslim people. It's not a consequence of
old-European fascism, but - paradoxically enough - modern
multiculturalism, particularly in France. There, most of the attackers
show up in the statistics as French citizens because of the liberal
French naturalization laws. People from the European liberal left, like
Fallaci, may find it too distastefully un-p.c. to be frank about this.

I haven't heard of Neo-Nazi or right-wing skinhead attacks yet. As their
racist hatred is typically targetted at Arabs and Turks, I guess they
have trouble siding with the Palestinians. 

What's more, as the consequence of the Holocaust, there aren't many jews
in Germany to attack. Since critically low IQs coupled with alcoholism
are a major problem in their ranks, most Nazi kids don't even have a
clear idea what a jew is. Many of them think it's an idiomatic word for
geeky intellectuals. (No, I am not joking.)

A wholly different matter is public political discourse, the whole
suspicious Anti-Israel rhetoric and strange new Anti-Israel alliances
from the far left to the far right. The "Autonomen" extreme left in
Berlin is split between extreme Pro-Palestinians and a Pro-Israel
faction which, in telling post-fascist logic, calls itself
"Anti-Germans" (as if, like Goebbels would have said, to be for Israel
would mean to be against Germany).

It's an ugly mess of self-righteousness and self-hatred, Anti-Semitism
and a postwar Philo-Semetism operating on the same prejudices and
stereotypes as Anti-Semitism. Those who don't rant in public hopefully
are those who can see shades of grey.

Oriana Fallaci's article strikes me as another such rant, on the
Philo-Semitic side, with the pseudo-religious tone coming as little
surprise. (- "political theology", to quote Carl Schmitt, at once a Nazi
antisemite and brilliant theoretician. He also wrote that "a souvereign
is the one who can declare the state of emergency" which strikes me as a
weirdly complex description for the Israeli/Palestinian conflict,
mapping it in all its ambiguities.) Fallaci's superficial
self-criticism, all the more in that ritualistic and confessional
fashion, strikes me as quite sleazy: Look what a good and aware person I
am. Unfortunately, the same sleaziness seems to rule European politics
these days.


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