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October 7, 2015 / 24 Tishri, 5776
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Lumping Deir Yassin and the Holocaust Together

A highly regarded professor who is affiliated with Harvard engaged in anti-Israel rhetoric and a distortion of history.
Historians debate the number of victims at Dir Yassin, some suggesting there were as many as 120, including civilians.

Historians debate the number of victims at Dir Yassin, some suggesting there were as many as 120, including civilians.

Safi places himself in the service of a deeply disturbing modern tradition in which the conflict between the Arabs and the Israelis has been hijacked by the proponents of poisoned analogies and terms that should have been left alone. It’s a tradition in which Israel’s defense forces are reflexively depicted by foaming-at-the-mouth ideologues as carrying out holocaustgenocidemassacre. If someone could come up with more potent, more loaded words and images, they would have been adopted too.

In doing this, the people using them have emptied them of meaning. What does it actually mean if the Israelis are doing exactly what the Nazis did? (Concentration camps, gas chambers, mobile firing squads, crematoria and on and on and on.) It’s a question that, if you accept the premises on which it’s posed, takes you to dark places.

By the foolish action of adopting a famous archive photo illustrating the German industry of death – an actual, non-metaphorical manifestation of documented genocide on a monumental scale – to advance a controversial political viewpoint, Prof. Omid Safi has done a great disservice. He adopts the voice of those who choose “not to respond in hatred and venom,” but what has he done if not that? The losers are his university, the people who provide him with a blog platform, his students, and the cause of pluralism and tolerance.

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About the Author: Frimet and Arnold Roth began writing and speaking publicly soon after the murder of their fifteen year-old daughter Malki Z"L in the Jerusalem Sbarro massacre, August 9, 2001 (Chaf Av, 5761). They have both been, and are, frequently interviewed for radio, television and the print media, including CNN, BBC, New York Times, Washington Post, Al-Jazeera, and others. Their blog This Ongoing War deals with the under-appreciated price of living in a society afflicted by terrorism which, they contend, means the entire world. Frimet is a native of Queens, NY while her husband was born and raised in Melbourne, Australia. They brought their family to settle in Jerusalem in 1988. They co-founded the Malki Foundation in 2001 and are deeply involved in its work as volunteers. They can be reached at thisoingoingwar@gmail.com .

The author's opinion does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Jewish Press.

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3 Responses to “Lumping Deir Yassin and the Holocaust Together”

  1. Gil Gilman says:

    Deir Yassin was debunked by CAMERA years ago.

  2. Gil Gilman says:

    Deir Yassin was debunked by CAMERA years ago.

  3. This article should have mentioned the massacres at Mount Scopus and Gush etzion.
    In fact why aren't these arab atrocities mentioned more.
    Israel should go an an ideological offensive rather than just trying to defend.
    itself in a biased media.

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