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January 16, 2014

Jewish activists want publishers of Mein Kampf to include annotations to put the book into “humanitarian context”

Filed under: Germany — Tags: — furtherglory @ 12:44 pm

Update January 17, 2014:

[I previously blogged here about American President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who did nothing to save the Jews of Germany because he did not want a large number of Jews in America. Like Hitler, he did not want the Jews to control his country.]

To give you an idea of what the Jewish “annotation” of Hitler’s book Mein Kamp might look like, read this article, written by Abraham H. Foxman of the ADL (Anti-Defamation League).

Editor’s Note: The following is an introduction to Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf written by Abraham H. Foxman, the National Director of the Anti-Defamation League and a Holocaust survivor. Mr. Foxman was asked to write the introduction for the 1999 English translation published by the Mariner Books division of Houghton Mifflin Co. It is reprinted here in its entirety with permission from the publisher.

Before the Holocaust, the Western world had had few lessons on these subjects. So we missed the portents of disaster: the denial of civil liberties in Germany as early as 1933, the establishment of Dachau (a concentration camp for political opponents) that same year, the passing of the Nuremberg Laws of 1935. These measures should have alerted us to the danger Hitler represented. He had made his ultimate goals clear in Mein Kampf as early as 1926: rearmament, the abolition of democracy, territorial expansion, eugenics, the “elimination” of the “Jewish threat.” Mein Kampf may have been dismissed by the West when it was first published — it is largely a theoretical text, lacking an identifiable program for accomplishing the goals it describes — but here Hitler was taking concrete steps to realize his vision. Yet nothing was done. Even in the 1940s when the reports of death camps became available, we continued to deal with Hitler in conventional military terms; we understood war, but genocide we could hardly imagine, even with evidence before us. Even today it is tempting to close our eyes to the genocidal aspects of World War II, to view the Holocaust as the byproduct of an ordinary, though catastrophic, military conflict. The systematic effort to destroy a religious or ethnic group is a concept so horrifying that our instinct is to look away.

The lesson, however, has begun to sink in. The term genocide was coined in 1944; four years later the United Nations General Assembly made the action illegal under international law. The Nuremberg trials of 1946 were an improvised affair, but since then the principle of “crimes against humanity” has been refined and war crimes tribunals have become an accepted aspect of global statecraft. Jewish refugees in the 1940s encountered closed borders and international indifference, but today the West has begun to learn compassion for refugees. In a tragic, ironic way, the Holocaust has helped lead to these advances in world civilization.

[…]

[Hitler] is at his most concrete when writing about trade unions, control of the media, and foreign alliances, less so in describing the educational system of the ideal German state or his plans for eliminating syphilis, for example. On some of the most explosive issues he can be maddeningly opaque. Thus [Hitler] writes often about the “danger” that Jews pose to Germany and the rest of the world and suggests that one day there will be a reckoning between Jews and Germans, that he will “eliminate” the “Jewish threat.” But he presents no details on how this will be accomplished.

[…]

The glue that Hitler used to hold these disparate themes together was an extreme form of race-oriented social Darwinism, but even this idea was not limited to the German fringes. The modern “science” of race had evolved with the Enlightenment, when the Aristotelian distinctions between the “cultured” and the “barbaric” races were revived, this time using terms like “civilized” and “primitive.” By positing that certain races were inherently “primitive,” white men of the Enlightenment were able to justify both their continued toleration of black slavery and their imperialist designs on places such as Africa. Differences between races were scientifically “proven” with techniques such as anthropometry (the collection and study of precise measurements of the human body); the races were then ranked on some arbitrary scale, with modern European man always holding the highest spot.

Hitler’s racial theories cemented together all of the disparate aspects of his philosophy. Pan-Germanism, ultra-nationalism, rabid anti-Semitism and anti-Marxism, and theories of racial conflict led to his Manichean philosophy of Aryan versus Jew. Each aspect of Hitler’s ideology existed elsewhere; Hitler’s achievement lay in weaving them together and presenting them as a heady brew that the demoralized and economically struggling German people could not refuse. Though others may have formulated the National Socialist program in a more sophisticated fashion, Hitler’s essentialist formulations, presented in Mein Kampf and in his speeches, were able to galvanize the German people in ways that no others could

Continue reading my original post:

Sales of Hitler’s “manifesto,” entitled Mein Kampf, (My Struggle) are increasing dramatically, as people all over the world are purchasing e-books online.

In a news article, which you can read in full here,  you will find this quote:

As Adolf Hitler’s “Mein Kampf” enjoys a disturbing second act as a wildly popular e-book, Jewish activists are appealing to publishers to mute Adolf Hitler’s manifesto with annotations that put its hateful message into historical and humanitarian context.

[..]

But Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, thinks online sellers large and small should only sell annotated versions of the book since there’s “no way for those who apply democratic rules and values to the Internet” to ban it outright.

[…]

Cooper stopped short of asking for the book to be banned, but said annotating it is a thoughtful compromise that would help new generations of readers properly understand a book he says continues to propel “very disturbing, very corrosive” views of Jews worldwide.