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October 1, 2016 / 28 Elul, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Hitler’

Liberman Apologizes to Obama for Munich Comparison

Tuesday, August 9th, 2016

Last Friday, Israel’s Defense Ministry reacted sharply to the claim by President Obama that it, too, has reached the conclusion that the Iran nuclear deal improved security in the Middle East. The Defense Ministry, in an unsigned announcement, compared the Iran deal to the Munich accords of 1938, saying that the “basic assumption, that Nazi Germany could be a partner to any kind of agreement, was wrong,” and the world failed to prevent WW2 and the Holocaust, because world leaders at the time ignored the explicit threats made by Hitler and the rest of the Nazi leadership.

On Monday night, Defense Minister Liberman had to walk back his office’s statement, and apologize to the US. The Defense Ministry’s announcement Monday insisted the Friday release had been misunderstood by the media, and that “the State of Israel and the Israeli defense apparatus will continue to work in close and full cooperation with the US, out of a deep appreciation and mutual respect.” However, the new announcement explained, “Israel remains deeply concerned over the fact that even after the nuclear agreement with Iran, the Iranian leadership continues to declare that its central aim is the destruction of the State of Israel, and continues to threaten Israel’s existence with words and action.”

According to Ha’aretz, some 45 minutes after the Friday announcement, Prime Minister Netanyahu, who has had his own clashes with the current Administration, rushed to release his own statement, clarifying that “Prime Minister Netanyahu still believes that Israel has no greater ally than the United States.” Netanyahu then sent a senior advisor to US Ambassador Dan Shapiro, to explain that the Defense Minister had acted on his own, without Netanyahu’s approval.

On Sunday, the White House staff let the Israelis know they were fuming, and unable to understand how Israel chooses to attack the president in the midst of negotiating the biggest military aid package the US had ever awarded anyone on planet Earth.

Amb. Shapiro, who maintains a close relationship with Liberman, helped him out of this quagmire. He told him directly that unless he wants his name on the failure of the American military aid deal, he must apologize ASAP. Liberman understood, eventually, and for the first time in his career, apologized to a foreign entity. He pinned some of the blame on the media, but finally eked out an apologetic statement: “The difference between the positions of Israel and the US does not in any way diminish our deep appreciation of the United States and the president of the United States for their enormous contribution to Israel’s national security, and the enormous importance we attach to the strong alliance between the two nations,” the apology opened, and then delivered the needed specifics: “The Friday statement was not intended to make a direct comparison, neither historically nor personally [with the Munich accords]. We are sorry if it was interpreted otherwise.”

And he’ll never do it again.

JNi.Media

Obama, Liberman Statements Expose Raw Nerves in Jerusalem, DC, over Iran Deal

Saturday, August 6th, 2016

On Thursday, President Barack Obama claimed that Israel’s “military and security community” has realized he was right all along and now supports his nuclear deal with Iran. “The country that was most opposed to the deal,” he told a press conference, “acknowledges this has been a game-changer.”

That same military and security community, currently under new management, reacted swiftly and bitterly, saying that deals have value only when they are based on existing reality, and are entirely without value if the facts on the ground are the opposite of those assumed by the deal.

It then added a harsh reminder, that the 1938 Munich accord, whose “basic assumption, that Nazi Germany could be a partner to any kind of agreement, was wrong,” failed to prevent WW2 and the Holocaust, because world leaders at the time ignored the explicit threats made by Hitler and the rest of the Nazi leadership.

The Israeli response, despite the mention of the Holocaust, was considered by Israeli analysts to be showing restraint. For one thing, it was not delivered personally by Prime Minister Netanyahu, nor by the actual head of the “military and security community,” Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman. The boorish voice in this incident belonged to Obama. As a NY Post editorial put it, “What could President Obama have been thinking?”

Or, as the unsigned Liberman response implied, how can anyone in their right mind trust “the agreement with Iran, which itself explicitly and publicly announces that its goal is to destroy the state of Israel.”

It continued: “A US State Department document published this year states that Iran is the chief state sponsor of terror world-wide. Therefore, the Israeli security establishment, the nation of Israel, and many other nations around the world, understand that agreements like those signed between the world super powers and Iran aren’t helpful. They only damage the uncompromising struggle against nations which support terror.”

Netanyahu’s office issued a much softer response, following Liberman’s office’s statement, saying that despite the difference of opinions over the Iran deal, “Prime Minister Netanyahu still believes that Israel has no greater ally than the United States. As Netanyahu said in his UN speech last year, it’s important that those who were for the agreement and those who were against it cooperate to fulfill three goals; to make sure that Iran doesn’t violate the agreement, to deal with Iran’s regional aggression, and to dismantle Iran’s global terror network. The Prime Ministers expects these goals to become part of shared policies, and that the alliance between the United States and Israel only grow stronger not only with President Obama, but also with his successor.”

JNi.Media

Exclusive: Lawmaker’s Slur That Jews are ‘Termites’ Reminds Jewish Voter of Hitler’s ‘Vermin’

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

A vicious anti-Semitic slur flung by a Democratic member of Congress on Monday against Israeli Jews living in Judea and Samaria hit one Jewish voter square in the face with the ice-cold memory of another time, when similar words were spoken.

With just one word, U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson of Georgia proved to anyone who bothered to pay attention that the Democratic Party is no longer the traditional safe haven of the American Jew.

Speaking in Philadelphia at an pre-Democratic National Convention event sponsored by a group from the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement, the House Armed Services Committee member compared the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria to “termites,” according to the Washington Free Beacon.

Outraged, Sara Z. told JewishPress.com that anti-Semitism in the American Democratic Party is growing by leaps and bounds.

In an exclusive interview, Sara (who requested anonymity out of fear of reprisal from neighbors) said the phenomenon is “similar to the rising anti-Semitism in Britain’s Labour Party.” She said it has destroyed a party where Jews once felt welcomed — and that she could see that day coming for Democrats in the U.S., maybe sooner than they realized. “Perhaps Senator Hank Johnson has forgotten history, or is this another way to echo Adolf Hitler’s sentiments? In 1938 the anti-Semitic rhetoric was that Jews were “vermin,” she said.

“In 2016, we are now “termites.” It seems like nothing changes. In the era of ‘Black Lives Matter’ it seems that once again, the Jews are the world’s scapegoats, the disposable ones,” she continued.

“Do we never learn from history?”

According to the Washington Free Beacon, Johnson’s address to the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation included the following remarks:

“There has been a steady [stream], almost like termites can get into a residence and eat before you know that you’ve been eaten up and you fall in on yourself, there has been settlement activity that has marched forward with impunity and at an ever-increasing rate to the point where it has become alarming.

“It has come to the point that occupation, with highways that cut through Palestinian land, with walls that go up, with the inability or the restriction, with the illegality of Palestinians being able to travel on those roads and those roads cutting off Palestinian neighborhoods from each other,” Johnson continued.

“And then with the building of walls and the building of check points that restrict movement of Palestinians. We’ve gotten to the point where the thought of a Palestinian homeland gets further and further removed from reality.

“You see one home after another being appropriated by Jewish people who come in to claim that [Arab] land just because somebody did not spend the night there,” he said. ‘“The home their ancestors lived in for generations becomes an Israeli home and a flag goes up. The Palestinians are barred from flying flags in their own neighborhoods.

“The fact is the Israeli government, which is the most right-wing government ever to exist in the State of Israel in its history, the most right wing government, you got a guy like Trump who is now the Minister of Defense in Israel calling the shots on defense,” he said.

Hana Levi Julian

Exclusive: Arab Outraged as Peter Beinart, US Jewish Activists, Occupy his Land [video]

Monday, July 18th, 2016

A group of anti-Israel Jewish activists arrived in Hebron to award the city its first movie theater. But in the process, according to local Jewish residents, they destroyed the grazing grounds of a local Arab shepherd.

According to a JTA report by Andrew Tobin, dozens of American Jews spent Friday in Hebron “practicing nonviolent resistance against Israel’s presence,” singing “The World is Built with Loving Kindness” in English and Hebrew, clearing scrap metal, weeds and debris from a dirt lot with several low-slung cement structures, singing Jewish and protest songs, and passing around bags of popcorn labeled “Cinema Hebron” below a “triumphant” sign that read “Cinema Hebron: Coming Soon.” Indeed, the mission last Friday was to endow Hebron its “first Palestinian movie theater.”

Eventually, soldiers and police officers demanded that the activists leave the area, and when said activists sat on the ground, locked arms and sang “Lo Yisa Goy el Goy Herev,” they were pulled up one by one and removed. The Israelis in the group were detained, the Americans were let go (which was their strategy). Around 2 PM the American activists left the Israelis behind bars and proceeded to have a much deserved lunch.

There are many things wrong with the above two paragraphs, and we encourage you to read the entire JTA report to better appreciate our story (Peter Beinart joins US Jews for civil rights-style protest in West Bank). We spoke to Tzipi Shlisel, who is actually quoted by Tobin in his story, where he uses her as the obligatory reactionary settler’s counter-view: “[The activists] think they’re doing a good thing, but they’re really helping the terrorists,” and, “I’ll tell you, in the Holocaust, Jewish people helped Hitler, too.”

Tzipi Shlisel’s father, Shlomo Ra’anan HY”D, was stabbed to death by a local Arab back in 1998, the year when then Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu handed over most of Hebron to PA Chairman Yasser Arafat. Shlisel recalls it was a scene similar to the devastating stabbing of 13-year-old Hallel Yaffa Ariel, in Kiryat Arba two weeks ago.

But Tzipi Shlisel contacted JewishPress.com not because Tobin’s report treated her father’s murder with less empathy than it did the activists’ lunch, or Because Tobin used her as a necessary color stain on his canvas describing brave Jewish activists defying Israeli occupation with action and song. Tzipi Shlisel insists Tobin’s report is partial, and that he missed out on a wealth of historic and cultural information, including the fact that the area the Jewish activists weeded so energetically was prized for its weed by a local Arab shepherd.

The lands in question are in Tel Rumeida (biblical Hebron according to some authorities) which were purchased by the Hebron Jewish community 200 years ago, the first one in 1811, the second in 1816. During the 1949-67 Jordanian occupation, the Abu Aisha clan took over some of those lands. The neighborhood of Admot Yishai was built on a small part of this land, which is otherwise known as the Tel Remeida settlement, over which the Arabs are fighting the Jewish community. “But we have aerial photographs of the entire area, including the ancient olive trees which were purchased along with the land, as is noted in the purchase documents, and these lands all belong to the Jewish community,” Shlisel insists.

Near the neighborhood there’s an area where the army built a bunker behind which there is a copper factory which was shut down for environmental reasons more than 30 years ago. “It generated crazy air pollution, Jews, Arabs, no one could breathe,” Shlisel recalls.

“Eighteen years ago, after my father was stabbed to death by an Arab, the IDF created check points for the Arab traffic near our neighborhoods, and the area around the inactive copper factory is off-limits to Arabs.”

Hebron is divided into the H1 and H2 zones. H1 compromises 80% of Hebron, and Jews are forbidden to go there. The Arabs, on the other hand, can move freely in much of H2.

“Now, when the activists arrived with their tremendous singing, they cleaned up the area thoroughly, it was truly amazing, but the local Arab, a member of the Abu Aisha clan, who’s been claiming that these are his lands, and even says they are registered as his with the city of Hebron, was not consulted.

“Later, a police officer told me there was a military order (tzav aluf — lit. decree issued by a General) to evacuate the activists and that the Arab had filed a complaint with local police,” Shlisel said.

JewishPress.com contacted the local Hebron police station chief who said there had been no complaint filed. But a different source in the Hebron community who asked to remain anonymous told the JewishPress.com that the leftwing activists, one of whom was a former Tanzim activist from the Abu Aisha clan, convinced the Arab shepherd not to file a complaint. The fact is police and IDF soldiers did show up to remove the activists, and the Arab is seen asking police to chase away the American invaders.

In any event, in the video, shot by Shlisel for TPS, the Arab is telling police, “Yalla, take them from here … these are my lands …”

“I heard the same Arab complaining that they pulled out his grazing weed from the ground, that he owns a herd which he keeps in Dura village, and the old factory is one of the area where his goats graze. Those peace activists did a cleanup job on his source of livelihood. They raked and tore up the weeds, and from a Western culture point of view they did a fantastic job, but from this Arab’s point of view they destroyed his grazing field,” Shlisel said.

Responding to an inquiry JewishPress.com emailed Peter Beinart, Sharon Rose Goldtzvik of “Uprise – communications consulting for good guys,” wrote back:

The report you received is incorrect. Early in the day, Israeli police questioned Mr. Abu Aisha’s ownership of the land, and Mr. Abu Aisha quickly produced documents proving that he is indeed the owner. The police then dropped the claim. The “local Arab farmer” you reference was never named and was not present; in fact, there is no evidence that such a complaint was ever filed. Again, Mr. Abu Aisha was able to quickly prove that he owns the property and police recognized his rightful ownership. The IDF later returned with a “closed military zone” order; this was the basis for removing the activists.

I should also mention that the property was a relatively small plot consisting of a couple of cement and cinder block buildings, and a lot of debris. It could not have been used for animal grazing. I don’t know who reported otherwise.

But as can be heard on the video, Abu Aisha is clearly asking police to remove the activists, and says that he often grazes his animals there (watch the last half of the tape, shot by Shlisel for TPS, starting sec. 23).


As to the idea of “Cinema Hebron” (the name of the city in Arabic is Al-Khalil, meaning “friend,” after Abraham who was the friend of God, while Hebron is the colonialist-Zionist name used by the occupiers) Hebron is probably the most conservative religious Muslim city in all of Israel, where men and women are completely segregated, where Hamas rules, and where the very idea of attending a movie, never mind opening a movie theater, could get a man flogged.

That these American “liberators” would be so ignorant of the cultural and religious values of the people they have come to set free with song and hard weeding is possibly the funniest, even hallucinatory, idea of all.

“Which is why the only place where they could advocate having a movie theater in all of Hebron was near the Jewish neighborhoods, where at least no one would stone the living daylights out of them for their insolence, Tzipi Shlisel said, adding, “These human rights group who say they want to help the Arabs are actually ignorant of who these Arabs are. They step on their culture, trampling their values, with great glee and with a loud song on their lips.”

David Israel

Defining the Problem

Sunday, July 17th, 2016

I spent the last 3 weeks in the US and Canada on a speaking and fundraising tour for Standing Together 24/7 IDF and realized Israel, America, Canada and the entire world are in the same predicament when it comes to fighting terrorism. It seems all our governments are having a hard time defining right and wrong. It seems our countries and many of our people have given up on the idea that we are the good guys.

A month or so ago an Islamic terrorist pledged alliance to the Islamic State and murdered 50 people in a gay bar in Orlando.

It was like there was contest on who can better deflect the fact that this was a radical Islamic terrorist attack! Some immediately called the attack a homophobic attack while others were screaming about gun control. The President seemed to be flexing his executive muscles in order not to say three simple words; RADICAL ISLAMIC TERRORISM

Some tried what I call the ’emotional escape’ and said, ‘what difference does it make! People died and I should be more sensitive.’ It is actually those who refuse to clearly define the Orlando attack as a radical Islamic terrorist attack who are being insensitive and cruel. Those who were murdered can no longer be helped, but to ignore the ideology that brought about the attack is cruelty to future victims.

Is there a gun control problem in America? Absolutely! How else do you explain how a guy who was investigated by the FBI TWICE for his radical Islamic views was still able to attain a gun legally.

Why was he able to attain a gun legally? Because, although the FBI saw red flags waving all over the place, they did not have anything incriminating and did not want to offend the terrorists “religious” beliefs by suspecting his radical views were actually dangerous. The wouldn’t want to offend him!

The liberal way is to defend the rights of all people except those that are actually being threatened by the people liberals are defending and if you dare point out the radical religious views and call them dangerous….you’re a racist!

Yes, there is a gun control problem in the U.S.A, but that is not what murdered the victims in Orlando. The radical Islamic terrorist did not murder people because he had a gun, he had a gun because he was looking to murder people! Read that again and internalize it!

What’s the difference?

Well, if Orlando is a result of a gun problem, is a 17 year old Muslim terrorist who broke into a Jewish home in Hebron and stabbed a sleeping 13 year old Jewish girl 35 times (!!!!) a knife control problem? Was the Boston bombing a pressure cooker problem? The terrorist in France a truck control problem?

Don’t people understand that by calling this a gun problem they are exonerating the perpetrators themselves! Would any of those gun-control people say in 1942 there was a gas problem in Germany? It’s ridiculous!

When it comes to Israel, we are seeing the same inability to define the actual base of the conflict. Many claim this conflict is about land. The fact of the matter is there was a time when all the “disputed” land was already in Arab control.

Between 1948-1967 the entire WB including Jerusalem, the entire Gaza strip and the Golan heights were in Arab control, was there peace? Anyone with any historic integrity should be able to admit that this conflict has nothing to do with the land. Radical Islamic terrorists were murdering Jews long before there were settlements or even a State of Israel. Just ask the Jews of Hebron in 1929 or those who attended the meeting between the Muslim Mufti of Jerusalem and Hitler in 1942!

Those that advocate a Two-State solution are actually strengthening the radical Arab (Mostly radical Muslim) narrative that was created in order to disguise their blind hatred for Jews and the Jewish country with a fabricated historic and political claim. There was no conquering or occupation of Palestine from the Arabs! Can we please stop making believe it happened and can we please stop making believe the solution will come as a result of our adopting a false historical national claim called Palestine! Not only will masquerading the real issue not stop terrorism, it will strengthen it!

Before discussing a solution one has to ask themselves what is the real cause of the problem. Why have Arab countries attacked Israel time and time again? Why did Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and some of their friends attack Israel in 48?

Was it because they were missing land in their countries?

Have you see a map of the Middle East lately!

Why did Nasser call for Israel’s destruction in 1966? Was it because of settlements that did not exist yet?

Why did Arafat start a terrorist organization called the PLO in 1964 with the soul purpose of destroying Israel when there were no settlements or “occupation”? (1964 was 3 years before the Six Day war and before the settlement block existed! The Arabs were under Arab control)

Israel left Gaza completely in 2005 with no demands from the Arabs, did it bring peace? Why did the Arab population democratically vote for a terrorist organization with a clear call to murder Jews? Was it because they wanted Gaza to be free?

When you answer these 5 questions, you will understand what is the source of the conflict and what it is not.

Jerusalem an Arab capital? Really! When was Jerusalem ever an Arab capital or even an important city before the Jews came home? Do I know what the solution is?

The real question is, do you know what the problem is!

So why is the world and some Israelis so blind to this obvious reality? Why can’t Obama say the words radical Islamic terrorism? It’s not really about offending someone and whether you think Obama is a Muslim or not is totally irrelevant. The real issue is the belief in a fantasy word where everything can be solved with diplomacy. See, if Obama would call it radical Islamic terrorism, there would be no diplomatic solution. He knows as well as anyone else that the solution to a terrorist is a bullet.

Calling it a gun control problem basically throws the blame on all of us instead of on the terrorist and makes believe if we just work harder Orlando will not happen again.

Israeli leaders have been apologizing and bending over backwards in order to make offers to those who want us destroyed. Don’t you dare call it a radical Islamic terror problem because that would make the Two State solution as immoral as the Munich agreement that Chamberlain signed with Hitler.

Don’t you dare admit this is a religious war because that would make you a racist! It doesn’t matter that the only people blowing up buses, shooting fathers in front of their family, stabbing little Jewish girls in their sleep and firing rockets at Israel are 100% of the time radical ISLAMIC terrorists!

Forget all those facts. Take a big gulp of the Kool-aid and a puff of the peace drug and make believe all the terrorists want is a small sliver of Israel and they will stop murdering Jews Oh, and while you are apologizing for a crime Israel did not commit, make sure to uphold real apartheid by not allowing Jews to pray on the Temple Mount which is being occupied by radical Islamic terror supporters. We wouldn’t want to God forbid offend them and their beliefs and allow actual freedom of religion! That would have the UN condemning us and calling us racist…. Anyone else see the irony here?

What’s my solution? Let’s say I don’t have one. Does that mean we should adopt one that is historical, national and religious suicide? Doctors don’t know what to do, so they start cutting off limbs?

DEFINE THE PROBLEM!

Solution to radical Islamic terrorism?

A bullet!

Solution to a fabrication of history called Palestine used in order to justify starting wars with Israel and murdering Jews?

FIGHT!

Those who support the Palestine Arab narrative are either completely ignorant or intentionally aiding and abetting terrorism! No room for diplomacy there and it’s not because I want war, it’s because they do!

What’s the solution? Let’s start by reminding ourselves that we are the good guys. The fact that the Arabs lost the wars they started does not make them victims, it makes them losers and maybe they should get the hint. #AllahIsAZionist.

Those Arabs who want to live in peace in Israel as a Jewish State? Welcome! Those who want a new State called Palestine on land they think was an Arab country called Palestine?

1. Learn history!

2. Jordan sits on 70+% of British Palestine and has a majority of 73% Arabs who call themselves Palestinians. Make Jordan Palestine!

I love when people hear that they call me unrealistic or say the Jordanians would not agree.

Let me get this straight. Hashemites who have absolutely no connection to this land and who came from Mecca and took over the area of Trans-Jordan don’t want to give the area to Arabs who call themselves Palestinians is an acceptable excuse but it is ok to demand of Jews who have a long history to give up land to those who advocate the destruction of Israel?

You think it is realistic that Israel, which is smaller than New Jersey, split up more of its land to hand it over to those who seek to destroy it but it is unrealistic to demand the Hashemites from Jordan, which is hundreds of times bugger than Israel, give up land to their own brothers? ENOUGH!

Realistic? The ‘peace’ camp gave guns to Yasser Arafat and the world awarded that terrorist the Nobel Peace Prize!

Don’t tell me about being realistic!

No more risk taking, no more concessions to those who start wars and justify terror! Israel is ours by right and it’s time we stop making believe we are the bad guys!

Three choices for our enemies:
1. Leave

2. Fight

3. Accept Israel as the Jewish homeland and live happily.

Ari Fuld

Graduation Gift: York Jewish Student Awarded £1,000 for Suffering from Anti-Semitism

Sunday, July 3rd, 2016

Zachary Confino, 21, a Jewish third year Law student and president of the Union of Jewish Students at York University in the UK, received an apology and payment of £1,000 from the University of York Students’ Union after two years of battling anti-Semitism from students while studying at the university, The Telegraph reported.

Although the nature of the anti-Semitic abuse is not specified in the apology, the report says that “It is understood that Mr Confino, who narrowly missed out on a first class degree and had suffered with stress, had been racially abused and bullied.”

A spokesperson for the University of York said in a statement, “The University of York acted as mediator to resolve a long-running complaint brought by a student against the University of York Students’ Union. This involved an apology by the Students’ Union to the student and a token payment of £1,000.”

Joint statements had been signed with both the Jewish Society and the Islamic Society on campus.

Confino’s experience caught the attention of the former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, who called on government to intervene to stop the rise of “poisonous hate” on campuses. In a letter to Confino, Lord Williams said he had written to Jo Johnson, the universities minister, because of the “muted” official response so far to rising anti-Semitic behavior. Williams described anti-Semitic incidents in a growing number of universities, including Oxford, Cambridge, the London School of Economics and York.

Williams added: “Anyone concerned (as I am) about Islamophobia here and elsewhere needs to be scrupulously alert to the risk of scapegoating and demonizing other religious communities, especially Jews; and anyone with even the least bit of historical sense ought to hear the echoes of past bigotry and violence towards Jewish people in Europe.”

The former Archbishop of Canterbury also said he was “dispirited” by the failure of Christian chaplains at York to support Mr Confino. “You’d expect a more simply empathetic engagement,” he wrote.

Zachary reported that one York student posting on Facebook compared Israelis to Nazis, but when he raised this with the Students Union, he was told that there was nothing the Union could do. Zachary says he has received hateful anonymous messages online, as have other Jewish students. One message said, “Hitler was onto something.” He has been called a “Stupid Israeli [expletive]” and a “Jewish [expletive].”

Zachary told The Tab that the attacks on him escalated about five months ago, after he had launched a campaign against a play put on by the Palestinian Solidarity Society. According to Zachary, his communications with the Students Union bordered on the absurd: “We entered into a debate on what is and what isn’t anti-Semitism with people who clearly don’t understand what Jewish hate is,” he said. “It’s adding insult to injury. I’m experiencing anti-Semitism and then getting told it isn’t anti-Semitism.”

JNi.Media

Report: Germany Returned Nazi-Looted Art to the Nazis who Looted It

Tuesday, June 28th, 2016

Germany returned Nazi-looted art to the high-ranking Nazi families who stole it rather than to the families from whom it had been taken, according to a report by the London-based Commission for Looted Art in Europe (CLAE), which says it has recently discovered this remarkable scandal that has been covered up by Germany for decades.

The family of the late Gottlieb and Mathilde Kraus of Vienna, represented by CLAE, who are still trying to recover their 160 looted paintings, had good reason to think two of their paintings would be in the state-owned museum in Munich, the Bayerische Staatsgemaeldesammlungen (Bavarian State Paintings Collections). Records show they were handed over to Bavaria by the US government in 1952 for the purpose of restitution. To their shock, they found the paintings had instead been given by the Bavarian State in the early 1960s to Henriette Hoffmann-von Schirach, daughter of Hitler’s close friend and photographer, Heinrich Hoffmann, and wife of the notorious Gauleiter of Vienna, Baldur von Schirach. Von Schirach was condemned at Nuremberg for crimes against humanity for the deportation of 60,000 Austrian Jews.

Bavarian State Paintings Collections

Bavarian State Paintings Collections

Gottlieb Kraus (1867-1952) and his wife Mathilde Kraus (1873-1954) were prominent members of Viennese society. Gottlieb Kraus was a businessman and honorary consul for Czechoslovakia in Austria. Beginning in the early years of the 20th century, he and his wife assembled a notable art collection of over 160 paintings, and their apartment was opened as a public museum to display it in 1923.

Gottlieb and Mathilde, together with their daughter Marie, fled Vienna soon after the Nazis took power in March 1938. Their flight took them via Prague, Brussels, England and Canada, before they were eventually able to settle in Washington DC. They discovered after the war that their entire collection left in Vienna had been seized by the Nazis in 1941, some selected for Hitler’s Linz Museum. Their daughter Marie made unsuccessful efforts over decades with both Germany and Austria to find and recover their possessions, but was blocked at every turn. These efforts were continued after her death in 1997 by the several grandchildren and great-grandchildren of Gottlieb and Mathilde.

The Commission for Looted Art in Europe (CLAE), is an international, expert and non-profit representative body which negotiates policies and procedures with governments and cultural institutions and promotes the identification of looted cultural property and the tracing of its rightful owners. It represents families from all over the world, acting on their behalf to locate and recover their looted artworks. It has been instrumental in the return to its rightful owners of over 3,500 items of looted property since it was set up in 1999. It also provides a Central Registry of Information on Looted Cultural Property 1933-1945 at www.lootedart.com to fulfil Washington Principle VI which called for the creation of such a repository of information.

Anne Webber, Co-Chair of CLAE, said CLAE’s research shows that in the 1950s and 1960s Henriette Hoffmann-von Schirach recovered scores of paintings from Bavaria. It seems that Bavaria thought restitution meant restitution to the Nazis rather than to their victims.

Among the high ranking Nazi families negotiating to get back art, some of it looted, were the Goering, Hoffmann, Bormann, von Schirach, Frank and Streicher families. In many cases they negotiated directly with the Director of the Bavarian State Museums and Ministers in the Bavarian government. While their demands were dealt with promptly and efficiently and with little requirement to prove their claims of ownership, the looted families had their claims thrown out or impossible hurdles were created to prevent them recovering their artworks. The families are still experiencing the same barriers to recovery of their looted works of art today.

One of the two Old Master paintings handed over to Mrs Hoffmann-von Schirach in 1962 in exchange for the paltry sum of 300 Deutsch Marks, was sold by her the following year for 16,100 Deutsch Marks to the Catholic Cathedral Association of Xanten in Germany’s North-Rhine Westphalia.

In July 2011, on behalf of the Kraus family, CLAE made a claim to Xanten for the painting, providing extensive proofs of its shocking history: looted by the Gestapo in Vienna in 1941 from the collection of Gottlieb and Mathilde Kraus; acquired in Vienna with other paintings from the Kraus collection by Heinrich Hoffman through the good offices of his son-in-law Baldur von Schirach; found by the Allies at the end of the war; returned to Bavaria by the US with the restitution obligation; and then returned to Mrs Hoffmann-von Schirach in 1962 on the flimsiest of grounds.

Despite the Cathedral of Xanten publicly proclaiming its proud ‘anti-Nazi’ past, it seems this attitude does not extend to property stolen from Jewish families. In the five years that CLAE has been trying to achieve an amicable settlement, the Cathedral Association, of which the local Bishop is part, has not once acknowledged the historical injustice perpetrated on this family or the persecution it has suffered. It has provided no documentation of any kind, nor a single proof of evidence of a good faith purchase. It has locked away the painting and only and repeatedly denied settlement of the claim on the grounds that it must have “an index linked return on its investment” of 1963. The last settlement offer by CLAE was made in September 2015 when the family stated their wish that their claim be resolved by the end of October 2015. Anne Webber said there has only been silence from Xanten in the nine months since.

CLAE’s several requests for an explanation of the post-war ‘return-sales’ to the Nazi families, made to the Bavarian State Museums, the Bavarian State government and the German Foreign Ministry, met with equal lack of success, as did its requests for documentation. CLAE was told that there were only four documents consisting of five pages in total. CLAE embarked on its own research, uncovering hundreds of pages of records and the details of this scandalous history.

JNi.Media

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/report-germany-returned-nazi-looted-art-to-the-nazis-who-looted-it/2016/06/28/

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