Yesterday was Holocaust Memorial Day. Whilst much is being written about Holocaust denial there is actually a more insidious, more vicious campaign being waged against memorialising the attempted destruction of Europe’s Jewry in the 1940’s.
The memory of the Holocaust is being diluted, watered down and one fears will ultimately be washed away. Yesterday at the White House , unbelievably, the Jews were not even mentioned in the official holocaust speech. Slowly, but clearly, they are being eased out of a day which specifically existed for their experiences.
For, despite the best efforts of the cynical left to tell us otherwise, the Holocaust was a uniquely Jewish event. Certainly, once it was ongoing other groups became swept up into its demonic maw but they were collateral incidental casualties. The Holocaust was instigated as a systematic bureaucratic industrial system specifically designed to eradicate all the Jews of Europe. It was not a pogrom, or forced expulsion to another country, nor was it a localised slaughter nor yet the result of starvation as other ethnic crimes had been. It was the sheer size, the jaw-droppingly awful deliberate efficiency of the German extermination that marked the Holocaust out as specifically awful. Biafra was hunger, Cambodia a civil war, the destruction of the Kurds was not systematic, death in the Gulags lacked nationalist identification. The Holocaust has an importance special in and of itself. Commemorating this event on its own does not take away from other genocides but the Holocaust remains so egregious, so specifically Jewish that it deserves its own unique commemoration. It was so appalling it must be a remain a singular warning for all time.
Of course, we need memorials to the suffering of Seventh Day Adventists, the disabled and mentally ill, Homosexuals or Gypsies who were also killed by the Nazi’s. But if you wish to remember all genocides, then have another day, and call it Genocide day.
We risk diluting the message of the Holocaust by including too much history, too many atrocities. In doing so we evade looking clearly at the truly demonic determination of the Nazis to wipe out every single Jew on the continent. The rational killing (if we can call it that) of other groups, be those Russian prisoners, homosexuals, or Polish intelligentsia was quite literally collateral and not a genocide. We must not seek to mitigate the special evil of the holocaust by lumping in other crimes.
Copyright David Macadam 2017