web analytics
July 30, 2014 / 3 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
InDepth
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Learning From The 1930s


Gerstenfeld-062212

Several factors in the delegitimization of Israel by European agitators call to mind what Jews experienced in the late 1930s. To study this thoroughly would require a huge effort. Formulating a few key ideas, however, could easily come from reading a single book on that period.

One example is Duff Cooper’s autobiography Old Men Forget. The author, a former British Conservative minister, served as first lord of the Admiralty at the time of the Munich agreements. On September 29, 1938, England and France abandoned Czechoslovakia to Hitler by agreeing it had to give up part of its territory to Germany. This led to the German occupation of the entire country six months later.

Shortly before Munich, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain spoke on the radio. Cooper writes that he had no words of sympathy for Czechoslovakia, only for Hitler.

Cooper resigned from the cabinet immediately after Munich. This act required great courage. Chamberlain was at the height of his popularity, as the agreement he signed promised long-term peace. Less than a year later, of course, war broke out after the German invasion of Poland.

In a diary entry dated May 22 1938, a time of continuous vicious German verbal attacks on Czechoslovakia, Cooper wrote about a cabinet meeting where “The general feeling seemed to be that great, brutal Czechoslovakia was bullying poor, peaceful little Germany…. It was decided to send off a telegram to tell the French to go carefully and not to rely too much on us, and another to urge the Czechs to make large concessions.”

This resembles the European Union’s ongoing criticism of Israel and its tiptoeing around the “peaceful Arab world” where many thousands have been slaughtered by their own countrymen.

In September 1938, another cabinet member, Viscount Hailsham, said to Cooper: “It all depends on whether we can trust Hitler.” Cooper asked, “Trust him for what? He has got everything he wants for the present and he has given no promises for the future.”

Can one trust Arab states or the Palestinians today? The great majority of Egyptians want to abolish the Camp David peace treaty in which their country got back Sinai without fighting. The Palestinian Authority glorifies murderers of Israeli civilians and names youth camps, streets and schools after them. Hamas has the genocide of the Jews written in its charter.

After the outbreak of the Second World War, many in Britain took the attitude that Poland was lost anyhow, so why should Britain continue to fight against Germany?

While the Germans were spending huge amounts of money on propaganda, the British were allocating none. Shortly after the outbreak of war, Cooper took off for the United States on a lecture tour. Before he left, Chamberlain sent a high-ranking official to request that Cooper abstain from saying anything that might sound like British propaganda.

“A former cabinet minister arrives from England and his country has just entered on a great war and he is advertised to lecture all over the United States on topics of current interest,” Cooper wrote. “What will his audiences expect of him except information about this war, the causes and the prospects of it? How can an Englishman give such information without presenting and defending the cause of his country? And what better form of propaganda could there be?”

Since Oslo we have had some Israeli governments emulate Chamberlain’s foolish position. While the current government has not done so, there certainly is vast room for improvement in the presentation of Israel’s case to the world.


About the Author: Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld is a board member and former chairman of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (2000-2012). He is a recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award (2012) of the Journal for the Study of Anti-Semitism.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Learning From The 1930s”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
U.S. President Barack Obama escorts Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu out of the Oval Office
Pirated Phone Conversation of Obama Slamming Bibi from Unverified Source
Latest Indepth Stories
Young children 'recruited' by the Al Qaeda-inspired Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS) terrorist group for a Shari'a jihadist army in Iraq and Syria.

ISIS poses a great threat to the entire civilized world in general and liberal democracies in particular.

kerry clown

Kerry is preoccupied with pressuring Israel, notwithstanding the transformation of the Arab Spring .

journalism

With no shortage of leftist media that seek to distort the news, what should our Torah response be?

Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett

Because let’s face it: Hamas obviously can’t defeat the IDF in the field, soldier against soldier

As Peres retires, Israel fights sour legacy: Insistence on setting policy in line with hopes, rather than with reality.

Our capital was not arbitrarily chosen, as capitals of some other nations were.

UNHRC High Commissioner Navi Pillay accuses the IDF of possible war crimes in Gaza again, cutting slack to Hamas.

There is much I can write you about what is going here, but I am wondering what I should not write. I will start by imagining that I am you, sitting at home in the Los Angeles area and flipping back and forth between the weather, traffic reports, the Ukraine, Mexican illegals and Gaza. No […]

Should Jews in Europe take more responsibility in self-defense of community and property?

It is time for a total military siege on Gaza; Nothing should enter the Gaza Strip.

Germany’s The Jewish Faith newspaper ominously noted, “We Jews are in for a war after the war.”

The truth is we seldom explore with kids what prayer is supposed to be about.

Almost as one, Jews around the world are acknowledging the day-to-day peril facing ordinary Jews in Israel and the extraordinary service of the IDF in protecting them.

More Articles from Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld
anvil oslo

Studies show that large numbers of Europeans hold a demonic view of Israel.

President Barack Obama met with Israeli and Palestinian Authority negotiators Tuesday morning

Now that several weeks have passed since President Obama’s visit to Israel, it is possible to get a better perspective on many of its aspects. Focus must not only be placed on what was said and done, but also on what was missing.

On February 17, the Dutch Nederland 2 TV station broadcast an interview with Dutch Turkish youth conducted by volunteer youth worker Mehmet Sahin. In the broadcast the youngsters expressed their admiration for Hitler and his role in the murder of Jews during the Holocaust.

On October 15, the Knesset voted unanimously to dissolve itself. Elections will be held on January 22, 2013. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided to take the step after realizing he could not obtain a majority for his proposed budget.

When Israelis say, “I worry about my grandchildren’s future,” it has a radically different dimension than similar concerns expressed in many other countries.

Since Oslo we have had some Israeli governments emulate Neville Chamberlain’s foolish position. While the current government has not done so, there certainly is vast room for improvement in the presentation of Israel’s case to the world.

There are few societies where the contradiction between Holocaust distortion and Holocaust commemoration is as pronounced as it is in the Netherlands. This phenomenon came to the fore earlier this month on National Memorial Day, May 4, designated to commemorate the many victims of the German occupier. One hundred thousand Dutch Jews – more than 70 percent of the country’s pre-war community – were by far the largest group of victims.

Last month the IDF responded to rockets being launched from Gaza into southern Israel by bombing Gazan targets. It took little time for some media outlets to equate the Palestinian aggressor with the Israeli aggressed. It took only slightly longer for many other media outlets to highlight Israel’s actions while shoving continued Palestinian aggression into the background.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/learning-from-the-1930s/2012/06/20/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: