Despite this history of sorrow, Jews spent long periods living unmolested in Europe.
And even amid the expulsions and persecutions and pogroms, Jewish culture prospered.
To his disciples, he is a Jewish Zola, accusing France’s bien-pensant intellectual class of complicity in its own suicide.
To his foes, he is a reactionary whose nostalgia for a fairy-tale French past is induced by an irrational fear of Muslims.
I located an acquaintance, a man who volunteers with the Jewish Community Security Service, a national organization founded after a synagogue bombing in 1980, to protect Jewish institutions from anti-Semitic attack. We made our way closer to the forward police line, and heard volleys of gunfire.
Amherst Physics Thesis - The Holocaust Systems Of Persecution Essay
The police had raided the market; the suspect, Amedy Coulibaly, we soon heard, was dead. They had been shopping for the Sabbath when he entered the market and started shooting.(In The Eternal Anti-Semite, the writer Henryk Broder popularized the notion that “the Germans will never forgive the Jews for Auschwitz.”) Israel is coming to be understood not as a small country in a difficult spot whose leaders, especially lately, have (in my opinion) been making shortsighted and potentially disastrous decisions, but as a source of cosmological evil—the Jew of nations.An argument made with increasing frequency—motivated, perhaps, by some perverse impulse toward psychological displacement—calls Israel the spiritual and political heir of the Third Reich, rendering the Jews as Nazis.Finkielkraut’s cast of mind is generally dark, but when we met in Paris in early January, two days after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, he was positively grim.“My French identity is reinforced by the very large number of people who openly declare, often now with violence, their hostility to French values and culture,” he said. There is so much guilt and so much worry.” We were seated at a table in his apartment, near the Luxembourg Gardens.I had come to discuss with him the precarious future of French Jewry, but, as the hunt for the Charlie Hebdo killers seemed to be reaching its conclusion, we had become fixated on the television.Jews were the creators of both communism and capitalism; they were clannish but also cosmopolitan; cowardly and warmongering; self-righteous moralists and defilers of culture.Ideologues and demagogues of many permutations have understood the Jews to be a singularly malevolent force standing between the world and its perfection.“It would be easier for the left to defend the Jews if the attackers were white and rightists.”I asked him a very old Jewish question: Do you have a bag packed?“We should not leave,” he said, “but maybe for our children or grandchildren there will be no choice.”Reports suggested that a number of people were dead at the market.The statistics in other countries, including Great Britain, are similarly dismal. One of the least surprising phenomena in the history of civilization, in fact, is the persistence of anti-Semitism in Europe, which has been the wellspring of Judeophobia for 1,000 years.In 2014, Jews in Europe were murdered, raped, beaten, stalked, chased, harassed, spat on, and insulted for being Jewish. The Church itself functioned as the centrifuge of anti-Semitism from the time it rebelled against its mother religion until the middle of the 20th century.