February 06, 2015

Playing the holocaust card

This is as egregious an example of playing the holocaust card that you will find.  I first saw it on Harry's Place where their dullest blogger, Gene, says:
the BBC audience and Galloway were deprived of the chance to hear New York City Councilman David G. Greenfield’s reaction to “pro-Palestine” activists interrupting the council’s commemoration of 1.1 million people killed in Auschwitz.
Included in the post is this YouTube clip:

Now what's very strange about the clip, which even the average Harry's Placer must have noticed, is that it doesn't show the disruption itself nor, of course, what had prompted it.

In case for some reason you don't or can't watch the clip, here's a bit of what he had to say, from the algemeiner:
“While we were discussing a resolution regarding the murder of 1.1 million human beings – I will point out that 90 percent of them were Jewish, but the other 10 percent, they were political dissidents, they were Jehovah’s Witnesses, they were gays, those were the people who were being killed together at Auschwitz-Birkenau,” Greenfield declared, “while we were discussing that, they had the chutzpah, the nerve, the temerity, to unfurl a Palestinian flag and yell at us.”
Voice rising, Greenfield contrasted Israel’s open society with the repressive regimes across the Middle East, before asserting, “What you saw here today was naked, blind antisemitism.”
Greenfield said that the demonstrators had unfurled the Palestinian flag out of anger that “Hitler had not finished the job. He only wiped out half of my family.”
He concluded: “Shame on them for disrespecting the most diverse democratically elected body in the United States of America, and that’s why we go to Israel.”
 But immediately after that bit was an explanation of what the disruption of council business was really all about:
The demonstrators immediate target was the trip to Israel which Councilman Greenfield referred to, planned for next year, and involving City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and 14 other Council members. Footage of the demonstrators showed them in a state of collective hysteria, showering abuse and hatred upon the council’s members. (See video below.)

Here's the clip:

and we're still none the wiser save for that little bit of honesty that seems to have slipped through the algemeiner's net.  The honesty, and inadvertant exposé of Councilman Greenman's dishonesty, was shortlived.  Read on:

Other councillors joined Greenfield in condemning the antisemitic disruption, which included the fringe group “Jewish Voice for Peace” among the participants.
Aha, now I have more that I can google to try to get to the bottom of this.  I eventually find the Jewish Voice for Peace site and their statement on the disruption:

JVP-NYC Statement on Jan 22nd City Council Disruption

On January 22nd, members of Jewish Voice for Peace-NY participated in an act of civil disobedience organized by the Direct Action Front for Palestine inside of City Hall.  Our goal was to call attention to fifteen City Council members' upcoming delegation to Israel, a trip designed to whitewash Israel's occupation of and discrimination against Palestinians. During the political action, the City Council introduced a resolution commemorating the seventieth anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau.  A banner supporting our cause was dropped just as this resolution came to a vote; this timing was completely unintentional. JVP-NY regrets disrupting this vote, as we respect without qualification the solemnity of the Holocaust and honor all victims of genocide.  
We unequivocally stand by our opposition to an all-expenses-paid junket to Israel by a delegation of the NYC Council, sponsored by organizations that promote Islamophobic policies in the US and defend Israel's human rights abuses and violations of international law. 
Above all, JVP-NY is committed to opposing all forms of racism, including anti-Semitism. It is with those values in mind that we remember the victims of Auschwitz-Birkenau, and remain steadfast in our opposition to Israel's human rights abuses.

So the council was using the holocaust as a smokescreen for a junket to and a promotion of Israel and tacking on holocaust remembrance as an afterthought.  Nice people these official holocaust rememberers.

UPDATE: Within momemts of this post, Harry's Place has decided to come clean and play dirty over this Palestine solidarity protest.  Here's the HP update:
Update: The activists chose the moment of the Auschwitz commemoration toprotest a planned visit to Israel by several council members.
I wonder why HP chose their moment to come clean about what they must have known when they originally posted the post.  Of course,, they're still being as dishonest as you'd expect, There is no evidence to suggest that JVP chose their moment to coincide with the councillors' hypocritical resolution on the holocaust.  Nor is there any reason to suppose it.  HP has been caught in another lie to smear the critics of the racist war criminals of the State of Israel.

Whilst enduring the torture of reading Harry's Place I also check out the comments just to see if there is a spark of humanity there.  There usually isn't but I did notice some guy appealing for a hat-tip over drawing this Gene chap's attention to the speech in the clip.  Gene duly obliged, I wonder if he'll hat-tip whoever it was that drew his attention to the fact that his original post was utterly bogus.

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