A holocaust industry. That god works in mysterious ways seems to be a pretty lame excuse. Forget faith. It was always about the covenant. Trust. The special relationship direct to the throne without intermediary. A misplaced belief? Yahweh simply wasn’t there at the agreed upon time of need. Was it a betrayal or a make it up to you later story? In any event, even a curmudgeon like Raul Hilberg comes up with 5.1 million. Like a market analysis, did this meet analysts expectations? Was the top line death figure confirming to the mean of the solicited experts?
Norman Finkelstein: Much of the outrage was directed at the chapter entitled The Double Shakedown, in which I documented the Holocaust industry’s blackmail of European governments in the name of “needy Holocaust victims” and then the shakedown of Holocaust victims by the Jewish organizations that pocketed the “Holocaust compensation” monies. Although controversial then, it has now become a commonplace how corrupt this racket was. Nearly all the principals in the Holocaust shakedown racket — Rabbi Israel Singer, Alan Hevesi, Burt Neuborne, Neal Sher, Melyvn Weiss, Edward Fagan, Avraham Herschson — have been exposed as crooks. A central role in this racket has been played by the Claims’ Conference. Read More:http://www.normanfinkelstein.com
No doubt, money and physical goods were confiscated by the Nazis, lots of it, of which in reality an entire society was complicit with few exceptions. And restitution as an ethical imperative in the process of dealing with memory and closure is probably necessary. But as Finkelstein points out, restitution funding, extorted and for the profit of the few and not the victims reinforces all the negative dynamics of the tragedy. Its inevitable that the holocaust would be commodified; its just too tempting to avoid profiting on the fears and anxieties of a traumatized psyche, at least to some extent.
Still, despite the Eli Wiesel and Viktor Frankl’s of the world, the subject remains a fascinating ” how could” examination of how precarious the values of civilization are and how close to barbarism we like to have dalliances with. Assertions that Wiesel is a charlatan, a poser are not valid; he speaks for many who truly believe what he says. An almost messianic exercise rooted in nihilism; a scary beauty in total destruction aesthetic that they feel taps into spiritual forces. Nonetheless, The Milgram experiment, and the related Zimbardo research exemplified how individuals can be carried away psychologically by lynch mob mentality and some deep rooted genes game for sacrifice.
This view was reinforced subsequently when the shady deals involving the New York/New Jersey branch of the Global March of the Living Program were exposed. The March of the Living was founded by Avraham Herschson, the disgraced former Israeli finance minister who is currently serving a jail sentence for fraud. Herschson had arranged for Curtis Hoxter to receive consultancy fees in excess of $700,000 allegedly for fund-raising activities on behalf of the March of the Living, despite the fact that the bulk of contributions were being provided by the Claims Conference. When Hoxter was asked why the March of the Living paid him $700,000 he could not recall. The Claims Conference then undertook to do a thorough investigation to ascertain what had happened to these funds, but since then there has been a deafening silence….
…Most importantly, the Jewish public has difficulty in comprehending why there are so many Holocaust survivors living in abject poverty while considerable sums continue to be expended by the Claims Conference on causes which lack a genuine relationship with the Holocaust, ranging from the Tel Aviv Yiddish Theater, Hatzola Volunteer Ambulance Services in Brooklyn, Birthright and Bnei Brak women’s organizations…. Read More: