This is the kind of thing that happens when people are so afraid of history that they stop talking about it, and the importance and meaning of historical events becomes diluted and forgotten:

JERUSALEM — Igniting a public uproar, some Jewish settlers said Tuesday they will soon start wearing orange stars on their shirts in a provocative campaign comparing the government’s Gaza withdrawal plan to the Nazi Holocaust.

The announcement was the latest escalation in the settlers’ drive to block the pullout. On Monday, settler leaders called for mass resistance against the withdrawal — even if it means going to jail.

Settler activists in Gaza said they would distribute the orange stars — reminiscent of the yellow stars that Jews living under Nazi rule were forced to wear — this weekend.

Oh for fuck’s sake, what a bunch of whiners. The Gaza pullout is just a relocation. Ariel Sharon isn’t going to murder all the Jewish settlers in Gaza (that’s the Palestinian terrorists’ job — and I didn’t notice anyone whipping out orange stars to protest that), nor is there any sort of campaign to eradicate them as living beings from the face of the earth. Other folks with more sense have a good idea of how 1) dumb this is, and 2) damaging it is to the significance of the Holocaust:

“This is a very troubling comparison,” Shevah Weiss, a Holocaust survivor and former parliament speaker, told Israel’s Army Radio.

The Nazis put Jews “into gas chambers, killing them, crushing their bones, spreading the remains in great piles all over Europe,” he said. “What is going on here?”

The settler campaign was condemned by the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a human rights group that focuses on Holocaust issues, and the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial center.

“The plan to wear orange stars perverts the historical facts and damages the memory of the Shoah,” said Yad Vashem’s director Avner Shalev, using the Hebrew word for the Holocaust. He urged the settlers to refrain from using the stars.

Is this the measure of Jewish memory these days? Has the Holocaust become nothing more than instant shock value to attach to one’s cause of choice in order to impart a sense of importance that the cause itself lacks?

In some parts of the world, the Holocaust had such a powerful impact that people were afraid to talk about it. First it was out of respect for the dead and tortured, and personal grief. But now it has become a taboo subject, and as those who directly experienced it begin to disappear, future generations know nothing of what actually happened or its meaning, because discussion is prohibited either by law or by custom.

Was the lesson of the Holocaust so severe that we are doomed to forget it in as little as a single generation?

This is why we must not be afraid to talk about horror. People are afraid to talk about 9/11, to examine up close the truth of what happened on that day. Yes, it is horrifying and graphic and wrenching. But the alternative is to whitewash it — to forget. We dare not forget the lessons of history.

And the Gaza settlers need a reality adjustment. They’re being relocated. Yeah it’s inconvenient. But it’s not genocide. If anything, it may become part of one of the best things to ever happen to Israel and the Middle East in general. A sort of auspicious occasion rather than a tragedy. It should be celebrated.

Plus, you know, wearing a big orange star on your shirt in the middle of a battlezone probably isn’t the best idea. The terrorists might solve this problem for us. “Look! A Jewish Gaza settler!” KA-BOOM!

One Response to “Gaza Pullout = Holocaust?”
  1. King James the Whatever says:

    Right on!

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