In Norway a debate is under way at the highest political levels following a TV report on the findings of Palestinian Media Watch (PMW):
A debate at the highest political level is underway in Norway following NRK TV’s 11-minute report on Palestinian Media Watch‘s findings about PA hate promotion, as documented in PMW’s book Deception. The report by investigative journalist Tormod Strand showed explicit examples of ongoing hate incitement, Antisemitism and terror glorification by the PA.
The next day, two Norwegian MPs from opposition parties were interviewed by NRK TV and challenged Norway’s funding policies. They called to stop funding the PA if the PA continues its hate incitement and terror glorification:
Morten Høglund, foreign policy spokesman for the Progress Party: “We must use the power we have, and as a major donor to the PA, we must fight fire with fire and say that we will stop the aid unless the PA takes immediate action to stop this type of hate message.”
Two days later there was a long debate in parliament in which the three opposition parties – the Conservative Party, the Progress Party and the Christian Democratic Party – challenged the Norwegian Foreign Minister about Norway’s funding of the PA.
MP Hans Olav Syversen of the Christian Democratic Party asked the Foreign Minister what the government intends to do this time, noting that this is not the first time Norway has objected to Antisemitism broadcast by PA TV:“…we are talking about state-funded and state-controlled TV broadcasts from the Palestinian territories. It is, with due respect, not the first time this problem (i.e., Antisemitic messages on PA TV) has been discussed. I have here a long list of questions that the Christian Democratic Party among others has asked about the same [issue], since 2000. My question is: what are you doing now with the PA so that this may come to an end, contrary to what has been done in the past, when you (i.e., the Norwegian Foreign Ministry) also said that you would bring it up with the Palestinian side?”
Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide replied that Norway “brought this up immediately at a high level with the PA, who responded that they would pursue this, and that they did not wish to broadcast this kind of expression through a Palestinian TV channel.”
However, later in the debate, Foreign Minister Barth Eide tried to minimize the severity of the PA hate incitement that PMW documented.“I want to emphasize that even though we now again saw one such example that was documented here – and which the Israeli organization Palestinian Media Watch made NRK TV aware of, and it is correct and well documented that this [PA TV incitement] happened – it’s not as if nothing [positive] has happened… For example curriculum and textbooks, including in Gaza, are among the best in the Arab world in terms of how they relate to Jews and the other party.”
PMW notes that the Norwegian Foreign Minister’s reference to PA incitement as “one such example” is a gross understatement. Not only did the 11-minute NRK TV report cite several examples of PA hate incitement, libels, and terror glorification, PMW’s book Deception, which was given to the Foreign Ministry, documents many hundreds of examples. PMW has shown that the PA hate promotion, libels and terror glorification from PA leaders and their controlled media is PA policy and not just “one such example” as the minister claimed.
In the end the Foreign Minister reiterated Norway’s attitude to hate speech and Antisemitism: “This is not something we can accept, this is something we strongly denounce, something we have denounced (in the past), and something we will continue to denounce (in the future).”
Kol hakavod to PMW for their persistence in pursuing Palestinian incitement at all levels.
Meanwhile, the Danes too have become alarmed at the rising Antisemitism in their society:
Danish officials say they’re alarmed by the frequency of anti-Semitic attacks. The rise in physical and verbal assaults in Denmark is in line with claims by Jewish communities that anti-Semitism is on the rise throughout Europe.
At a forum staged by Copenhagen City Council, Danish Jews urged the authorities to take action.
Claus Bentow and his family only feel completely secure in their apartment in a middle class area of Copenhagen. Here Bentow and his sons can freely wear their skullcaps. Outside they are forced to hide their religious identity. Like other Jewish families, they’ve been advised not to send their children to public schools
At a special forum designed to raise awareness about rising anti-Semitism, Bentow dismissed official figures that said there was about one attack a week in Denmark. He said the figure was much higher as so many assaults were not reported because of the perceived impotence of police investigations.
The audience listened in sorrow as a boy with a Muslim father and Jewish mother described what happened to him in a Muslim quarter of the city.
“I heard someone call me a Jewish pig, go to hell, throw a stone at me,” said 16-year-old Moran Jakob. “I tried to protect my girlfriend of course because they tried to hit her, and one of them took a little knife and stabbed me in the leg.”
What distresses Jews is that during World War II, Denmark saved their community by smuggling its members to Sweden. Now Denmark is no longer a safe haven.
One of the impacts of this growing anti-Semitism is that an exodus of Jews has begun. They are moving to countries where Jews can live in comparative safety such as Israel, the United States and Britain.
These stories, along with earlier reports of rising Antisemitism worldwide, fuelled more by hatred of Israel and by Palestinian and Muslim incitement rather than the “old-fashioned” Christian Jew-hatred, should both set off alarm bells amongst both the local Jewish communities and amongst European society in general.
On a related subject, a report published over the weekend brought us the shocking revelation that the Holocaust was much worse than anyone had previously thought. Researchers discovered that the number of concentration camps, forced labour camps, ghettoes etc. was 42,500 – far higher than anyone had previously thought:
The researchers have cataloged some 42,500 Nazi ghettos and camps throughout Europe, spanning German-controlled areas from France to Russia and Germany itself, during Hitler’s reign of brutality from 1933 to 1945.
The figure is so staggering that even fellow Holocaust scholars had to make sure they had heard it correctly when the lead researchers previewed their findings at an academic forum in late January at the German Historical Institute in Washington.
“The numbers are so much higher than what we originally thought,” Hartmut Berghoff, director of the institute, said in an interview after learning of the new data.
“We knew before how horrible life in the camps and ghettos was,” he said, “but the numbers are unbelievable.”
The documented camps include not only “killing centers” but also thousands of forced labor camps, where prisoners manufactured war supplies; prisoner-of-war camps; sites euphemistically named “care” centers, where pregnant women were forced to have abortions or their babies were killed after birth; and brothels, where women were coerced into having sex with German military personnel.
The maps the researchers have created to identify the camps and ghettos turn wide sections of wartime Europe into black clusters of death, torture and slavery — centered in Germany and Poland, but reaching in all directions.
The research could have legal implications as well by helping a small number of survivors document their continuing claims over unpaid insurance policies, looted property, seized land and other financial matters.
“HOW many claims have been rejected because the victims were in a camp that we didn’t even know about?” asked Sam Dubbin, a Florida lawyer who represents a group of survivors who are seeking to bring claims against European insurance companies.
Dr. Megargee, the lead researcher, said the project was changing the understanding among Holocaust scholars of how the camps and ghettos evolved.
The numbers astound: 30,000 slave labor camps; 1,150 Jewish ghettos; 980 concentration camps; 1,000 prisoner-of-war camps; 500 brothels filled with sex slaves; and thousands of other camps used for euthanizing the elderly and infirm, performing forced abortions, “Germanizing” prisoners or transporting victims to killing centers.
In Berlin alone, researchers have documented some 3,000 camps and so-called Jew houses, while Hamburg held 1,300 sites.
Dr. Dean, a co-researcher, said the findings left no doubt in his mind that many German citizens, despite the frequent claims of ignorance after the war, must have known about the widespread existence of the Nazi camps at the time.
“You literally could not go anywhere in Germany without running into forced labor camps, P.O.W. camps, concentration camps,” he said. “They were everywhere.”
Yad Vashem meanwhile has updated its online archives to include an encyclopedia of 1000 ghettoes where Jews were concentrated during the Holocaust years. It would seem they have a lot of catching up to do, judging by the NYT article.
The implications of this new research of quite explicit. We are only now discovering, over 70 years after the fact – the true staggering numbers of the Holocaust, and the realization that European civilians must have known what was happening right in their midst.
If European civil society today is now waking up to the horror of renewed Antisemitism in their countries, another Holocaust can be averted.
Of course there is one huge difference today: the State of Israel exists as a homeland for the Jews. The irony is that it is the very existence of the State of Israel that is fuelling the new Antisemitism in the first place.