In his LA Times column today, Jonah denounces the Gazans for breaking Godwin’s Law, cheapening the memory of the Holocaust, and infringing on his intellectual property.
Across the Islamic world, and in too many points West, it is still considered a penetrating and poignant insight to call Zionists the “new Nazis.” For instance, in Sunday’s Gulf News, Mohammad Abdullah al Mutawa, a sociology professor at United Arab Emirates University, penned an essay titled “Zionists are the new Nazis.”
I like a paragraph that’s self-verifying. Also, a tip to you young wordsmiths out there: notice how Jonah avoided a feeling of repetition when using the same phrase two sentences in a row by moving the quotation marks around.
Type “Israel” and “Nazi” into any news search engine and you’ll be rewarded, or punished, with a bounty of such statements just over the last week or so. Gaza is the new Auschwitz, the Israeli Defense Forces are SS troops … I find myself tempted to simply write “et cetera” because it’s all so familiar by now.
“Also, I’m getting paid by the word, and ‘et cetera’ counts for two, plus it’s classier than ‘etc.’”
But to do that is to dismiss, and therefore accept, such grotesqueries as trivialities, when in fact such charges are deeply revealing — just not about Israel.
As the old Usenet adage goes, the first person to call his opponent a Nazi automatically loses the debate. But when you do it in the title of your essay (or, say, on the cover of your book) you don’t even give your antagonist a chance to lose. Have a care, Mr. al Mutawa.
So why the obsession with casting the Israelis as the new Hitlerites?…It also grabs attention, galvanizes radicals, vents legitimate frustrations and anger and helps demonize the enemy…
It also stimulates bulk book sales, juliennes fries, and leads to embarrassing appearances on The Daily Show. But the most important thing to remember is that by comparing their opponents to genocidal fascists who enjoy whole grains, these Palestinian spokespersons merely demonstrate their own moral and intellectual bankruptcy. Now, if I can go off-topic for a moment, I noticed that Jonah’s book is out in paperback, marked down to $11.53 from $16.95, a savings of 32%!
Call me sentimental, but I still have a soft spot for the original subtitle.Posted by scott on January 7th, 2009