10 reasons why Holocaust comparisons fall short – Opinion

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It’s easy to look back and wonder why the people didn’t do this or that when there was still time, but it isn’t really fair. The reality of what was happening was simply unimaginable for anyone but the most imaginative.”

by Rabbi Chananya Weissman

Over the last year-and-a-half many people have been comparing the current situation to the Holocaust. Even Holocaust survivors have been sounding the alarm bells.

Of course, as morally superior good-for-nothings remind us, comparing anything to the Holocaust cheapens the Holocaust and disgraces the victims. Although I have been comparing the current situation to the Holocaust from early on, I’ve finally come around. Holocaust comparisons are seriously flawed.

Here are ten reasons why:

1) The Nazis and their collaborators killed people in extremely primitive ways. You cannot compare mass shootings, public executions, and burning people alive to the genteel methods of genocide employed today. It’s true that the Nazis eventually progressed to gas chambers, but even that was barbaric compared to today’s more enlightened methods of mass poisoning. The Nazis deserve credit for their contribution to the development of cleaner, greener ways to murder people by the millions, but those who make an actual comparison are obviously stretching. It’s apples and oranges.

2) The Nazis murdered tens of millions of people, but their success was limited almost entirely to Europe. They never managed to invade Israel, and America’s homeland was spared as well outside of Pearl Harbor. While the Nazis had quite a run in Europe, and even gave Russia a real scare, they were lightweights compared to their protégés, who have overtaken virtually the entire planet. In hindsight, it seems silly that we called the previous “mostly peaceful” periods world wars at all. They were European bloodbaths at most.

3) In the Holocaust it was clear who the enemy was. Excluding spies and informers, they all wore uniforms. They waved flags and performed the Nazi salute. This works very well for parades, but global warfare has become far more sophisticated since then.

Nowadays wars aren’t officially declared, soldiers and executioners dress like ordinary people, and the people really in charge hide in the shadows, unknown to the public. The war resembles day-to-day life. The battlefield is not two distinct armies facing off, but a hospital ward, a quarantine facility, a health clinic, a university, a kindergarten. Your killers smile at you, and most of them truly believe they are protecting your life instead of shortening it. Hitler needed to bring people to death camps; today they line up for the privilege, as if they are animals waiting outside Noah’s ark.

4) The Nazis built a robust propaganda machine, but the mass media was largely independent, even if they were sympathetic to the bad guys.

Today the mass media is the propaganda machine, and they barely disguise their allegiance to the official narrative. The establishment controls what is reported and even dictates the words to be used. You’re more likely to find ad-libbing at a Broadway play than a “newscast”. Hitler would be jealous.

5) During the Holocaust there were no big tech companies washing the brains of humanity every moment of every day, while censoring dissenters in real time. The Nazis were playing with one hand tied behind their backs compared to their spiritual descendants.

6) If the Nazis wanted to close a business, or a synagogue, or segregate the population, they needed to do most of the dirty work themselves, with brute force. Today they’ve convinced the people to do it themselves, without all the messy broken glass, smashed skulls, and rivers of blood. It’s the right thing to do! They’ve turned family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and co-religionists against one another with the same malice, but without the pay. You’re killing us! Murderer! Vermin! Stay away! I hope you get sick and die!

Today’s tyrants only need to use brute force on limited occasions: to send a message, break the will of protestors, and take out troublemakers. This is vital to their success; if there was blood flowing in the streets, the people would organize a real revolt far sooner than the bad guys want. They need to keep the happy face on and limit the brute force as long as possible, while they consolidate power. The Nazis didn’t conceal their bloodlust long enough. They’ve learned now. Never again.

7) The yellow star during the Holocaust was a mark of humiliation; no Jew would willingly display it, except those with an air of defiance.

Today’s version of the yellow star has become a badge of honor. It is a meritorious deed to become enslaved, and the symbols of servitude are a badge of honor. Those with an air of defiance against oppression are the ones who are spat upon and discriminated against. Even those who are ambivalent about the signs of servitude today – the masks, health papers, etc. – see no serious problem with it. So what if I have to wear a “Dirty Jew” sign? So what if I have to suffer? It’s not so bad, and everyone’s doing it. Why make waves?

8) Back then the people had no previous Holocaust to learn from. There was tyranny and oppression, sure – there always was. But there was nothing like the Holocaust. It’s easy to look back and wonder why the people didn’t do this or that when there was still time, but it isn’t really fair. The reality of what was happening was simply unimaginable for anyone but the most imaginative or stone-cold sober.

Today we have a previous Holocaust to learn from, we have countless books and documentaries and museums and school curriculums. We even have survivors to warn us! When those who follow us wonder why the people didn’t do this or that when there was still time, it will be fair.

9) During the Holocaust there were places to flee. Today there is no safe haven. We’re all in this one.

10) They estimate that 75 million people died in World War II. Those who have any inkling of what’s going on today would settle for that number right now and consider it a blessing.

In sum, comparing these days to the Holocaust is indeed inappropriate. It is an effrontery to the advances and hard work of today’s Amalekites, who make Hitler look like a chump.

Rabbi Chananya Weissman is the founder of EndTheMadness and the author of seven books, including Go Up Like a Wall and “Tovim Ha-Shenayim: The role and nature of Man and Woman.” He is also the director and producer of a documentary on the shidduch world, “Single Jewish Male,” available on YouTube. His work is available at chananyaweissman.com. He can be contacted at endthemadness@gmail.com

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