July 19, 2018

Mark Zuckerberg tries to reposition after seeming to attribute benign motives to Holocaust deniers.

I'm reading "Mark Zuckerberg clarifies his Holocaust comments" at CNN. Zuckerberg had spoken, in a long interview, about what Facebook deletes and what it allows:
"At the end of the day, I don't believe that our platform should take that down because I think there are things that different people get wrong," Zuckerberg told [ReCode's Kara] Swisher. "I don't think that they're intentionally getting it wrong.... It's hard to impugn intent and to understand the intent. I just think, as abhorrent as some of those examples are, I think the reality is also that I get things wrong when I speak publicly"...
He used Holocaust denial as his example of people perhaps just getting something wrong. That should not be deleted, in Zuckerberg's approach, because you can't tell that it's the intentional spreading of misinformation.
"Holocaust denial is a willful, deliberate and longstanding deception tactic by anti-Semites that is incontrovertibly hateful, hurtful, and threatening to Jews," Jonathan Greenblat, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, said in a statement to CNNMoney. "Facebook has a moral and ethical obligation not to allow its dissemination."

Within hours, Zuckerberg emailed Swisher to say he got things wrong.

"I personally find Holocaust denial deeply offensive, and I absolutely didn't intend to defend the intent of people who deny that," he wrote in the email.
I think Zuckerberg is trying to say Facebook can't figure out intent and doesn't want to have a policy that depends on judgment of intent even when the intent seems obvious. But there is another policy that's not dependent on a judgment of intent. Facebook takes down content is false and contributes to imminent violence (such as posts about Muslims in Sri Lanka serving poisoned food to Buddhists).

123 comments:

Gahrie said...

I think Holocaust deniers are ignorant idiots, (or worse) but I also think they have the right to speak.

The solution to bad speech is not censorship, but more speech.

rhhardin said...

Back in the 80s there was huge trading on the holocaust to get victim moral authority for various demands like no Christmas decorations at work, which produced are you crazy reactions from the majority. Not even the Christian majority, but the Christmas majority. Probably holocaust denial is an extreme form: you can't trade on what didn't happen.

The right reaction would be don't trade on stuff. It doesn't give moral authority.

If somebody's demanding taking down holocaust denial, somebody's still trading on it, would be today's data. Otherwise nobody would care.

rhhardin said...

In the Jewish section of the book catalogues I'd get from various publishers, there were always holocaust for kids books to bring your children up on victimhood.

That struck me as weird at best.

Original Mike said...

I thought Facebook was just friends talking to each other. They intrude on those conversations? Or is there a public space?

MayBee said...

The people most pushing Facebook to do more censorship are perhaps in for a rude awakening. The push is coming from all these lefties who want to imagine Facebook lost the election for Hillary. But it is my liberal friends who are constantly publishing political screeds these days, and in almost every single one I see them saying something I know not to be true.

In the meantime, I admire Zuckerberg's rational attempt to be old school liberal, and allow people to be wrong but free to speak.

Gahrie said...

But there is another policy that's not dependent on a judgment of intent. Facebook takes down content is false and contributes to imminent violence

No..but this one depends upon a judgement of truth. Who decides what is true? Especially in a world that no longer agrees on what is true, or even the existence of truth.

If you are one of those who don't believe in truth, aren't judgements of truth simple raw exercises of power?

MayBee said...

"Facebook has a moral and ethical obligation not to allow its dissemination."

Does it though?

Holocaust denial is hurtful and it is horrible people who believe it and discuss it. BUT it is words, and it is a belief and it can't change facts on the ground. If you hear someone being a denier, you know they are wrong and can move on. There is nothing they are doing to actively hurt you (other than your feelings) right now. I do think that's an important difference from contributing to imminent violence.
Otherwise.....where do we stop? People feel very free to say awful things about my country, my political candidate, my religion. Should Facebook stop it? Do they have an obligation to stop it?

David Begley said...

Kara Swisher will never interview Zuckerberg again. She’s one nasty piece of work.

mockturtle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tim maguire said...

Is holocaust denial necessarily dishonest? Do we know these people don't believe what they're saying? Or are the "good people" simply looking for any tool to silence words they don't like?

mockturtle said...

"because you can't tell that it's the intentional spreading of misinformation."

By that criterion every CNN broadcast and NYT article would be disallowed.

rehajm said...

It’s frustrating for lefties that they can’t conntrol narratives on social media the way they do in media media The ham handed effort looks funny sometimes.

Temujin said...

When you've been taught for years that there is no black and white- only grey, no right and wrong, nothing is clear, and everything is relative to the view of the person looking or talking, then this is the outcome: You twist yourself into a pretzel trying to explain how Holocaust denial is not from any bad intent. You also create new pronouns to please yourself daily. You might just say that a choice of 2 genders is not enough. You might say that Russians hacked, but the Chinese didn't hack. That Venezuela is crumbling but we can't figure out why. That 'Little House on the Prairie' is akin to Mein Kampf. That Capitalism is horrible because some people are poor, while Socialism is great because EVERYBODY is poor. You might think you can't decipher the intent of Holocaust deniers, but you're sure that Global Warming deniers are evil and should be locked up. You might think that national borders are so 20th Century while not even knowing what happened in the 20th Century. You might think that Bernie Sanders should be taken seriously. And you might go to Facebook to get your news.

Matthew Sablan said...

A person not in as good liberal standing would be in danger of actual consequences.

MadisonMan said...

Two weeks without Facebook on my phone -- and it's been a grand two weeks.

Gahrie said...

A person not in as good liberal standing would be in danger of actual consequences.


It helps of course that he controls the medium that would be most likely used to call the mob against him.

Etienne said...

Facebook and other social media sites have thousands of forums. These forums can be offensive to others. In the old days we would say, just change the fucking channel.

Each of the forums is generating revenue. That is the only measurement of whether something should be allowed. Facebook is designed for adults. If you can't handle anti-semitism, racism, patriotism, ism-ism, then don't plug in. Don't go there.

But to deny someone business revenue because people have forums of hate, is un-American. Hate is America's middle name - from Chink's and jap's in California, to Negro's and Puerto Rican's in Florida. God bless America, and all the countries we invade.

Matthew Sablan said...

I honestly see some variant of kill Republicans on my newsfeed or Reddit every day. I can be forgiven I imagine for not being convinced they really want to lower violence when things like "let's get Republicans on the gallows" isn't considered bad. Or "we should carve MAGA on their foreheads like they did to the Nazi in that one movie."

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

I'm hurt by the denial, through ignoring it, of the 100,000,000 murdered by socialism in the 20th century.

Including the 12mm murdered by German National Socialism.

Who speaks for them, Facebook?

Reason 273 I am glad I don't use Facebook

John Henry

mccullough said...

Zuckerburg is saying there are good people on both sides. Or that it’s too much work to censor this stuff.

Leland said...

I'm pretty sure those pushing the Steele Dossier were trying to decieve, is Facebook removing them?

Or is it easier to not censor speech and let the commons work this stuff out?

Curious George said...

My cousin is a animal nut, and posted something like "You can tell a person's character by how much dogs like them". I commented with a picture of Hitler and his German Shepherd with a "Really?" as a joke. This was a month or so ago. This morning a got a notice that I'm banned from FB for one day. Next time three days.

"We removed one of your photos because it doesn't follow the Facebook Community Standards.
We created our standards to help make Facebook a safe place for people to connect with the world around them. Please read the Facebook Community Standards to learn what kinds of posts are allowed on Facebook.
If you think your photo shouldn’t have been removed, you can reply to this message with more information and we’ll review the photo again. If it doesn’t go against our Community Standards, we’ll restore it to Facebook."

So I guess it's fine to post all those Trump is Hitler screeds that I see daily from lefties on my feed but a joke is not allowed.

Ralph L said...

I see plenty of "string 'em up" on the Right, but it's usually directed at individual Leftist actors, not the little people.

Oso Negro said...

It is simply amazing that Facebook couldn’t say whether China had tried to influence the election. They were sure about Russia, though.

Ralph L said...

Facebook demands they be called Alsatians. It wasn't the Hitler part of the photo.

Richard said...

You can argue that we should not suppress speech no matter how vile it is. For the record I am a free speech absolutist, so I would not be in favor of suppressing what I consider to be hateful speech. However, don’t pretend that holocaust denial is benign. It is not an end in itself, but a means to an end. Holocaust deniers are not just misguided individuals that are only trying to set the record straight. These people want to kill Jews. They fear that the horrors of the holocaust will cause people be sympathetic to Jews. Thus, they are denying that the holocaust happened so they can spread their hatred for Jews without fear of a backlash.

Expat(ish) said...

So if someone gets the number of gypsies killed during the Holocaust wrong then the post is rmoved? Or does the moderator stick a link to the wiki entry (assuming it is accurate by whatever the latest guess is) into the post?

How about if someone claims that communism has killed more people than Hitler and someone points out that the Soviets were socialists so it doesn't really count? Do Zuckerberg's faceless minions have to unwind that?

To beat this particular dead horse: the Trail of Tears, the Aztecs, ...

I've deleted my FB account, so I have no dog in this hunt, but if I did his name would be schadenfreude.

-XC

Darkisland said...

Richard,

It sounds like you are denying the 6mm Non-Jews murdered by the National Socialists.

Including 3mm Christian Poles.

It sounds like you are denying the cultural genocide of the Polish people.

If I am reading you right, it is shameful.

If I am reading you wrong, apologies. Perhaps you might wish to clarify.

John Henry

Dust Bunny Queen said...

So....Zuckerberg defends the right of Holocaust deniers to post their theories. Does he also support the rights of people who think that Obama is born in Kenya, is a Muslim plant, Hillary Clinton is a Reptilian to spread their news?

If you support the rights of some people to say things on the internet that offend, such as Holocaust deniers, anti-Trump treason theories, why not support ALL crackpot theories? OH....because some crackpot theories you agree with and some you don't?

The power to pick and choose, to censor or not censor, is one that can so easily be abused.

Until the Zuck is even handed or better yet, hands off, he can stop lecturing us.

hawkeyedjb said...

So basically most of the internet content put out by the government in Iran has to be deleted?

Ralph L said...

without fear of a backlash
I prefer they out and ostracize themselves. The people who believe them will believe anything, so let's know who they are, too. Makes it easier for the FBI to keep tabs on them without a FISA warrant.

Tom T. said...

Meanwhile, YouTube has allowed those parents who make videos of themselves abusively pranking their children to restart their operation, right after their conviction for child abuse.

Fernandistein said...

The money.cnn article about fakebook news has a prominent popup with two false statements:

"We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience.
...
By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies, revised Privacy Policy and Terms of Use."

Their Facebook struggles to explain why InfoWars isn't banned article repeats those false statements and features a graphical representation of imaginary creatures.

Fernandistein said...

Curious George said...
"You can tell a person's character by how much dogs like them".


Dogs and little kids all seem to like me, so I don't think that's true.

Tommy Duncan said...

Blogger Temujin said...

"When you've been taught for years that there is no black and white- only grey, no right and wrong, nothing is clear, and everything is relative to the view of the person looking or talking, then this is the outcome:"

Your comment about relativism is cogent. If truth and opinion are relative, there should be no censorship. And perhaps no shame, no morality and no laws. And statements like mine become meaningless.

Richard said...

" Darkisland said...
Richard,

It sounds like you are denying the 6mm Non-Jews murdered by the National Socialists.

Including 3mm Christian Poles.

It sounds like you are denying the cultural genocide of the Polish people.

If I am reading you right, it is shameful.

If I am reading you wrong, apologies. Perhaps you might wish to clarify.

John Henry"

By discussing A, one is denying B, C and D? WTF! I always took you to be a rational individual. I am having my doubts about that now.

J. Farmer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
EDH said...

It's hard to impugn intent and to understand the intent.

I think MZ meant to say it difficult to accurately impute intent.

It’s remarkably easy to impugn intent.

J. Farmer said...

Holocaust denial is a peculiar form of conspiracy theory, but attempts to banish it or to implement European-style holocaust denial laws is self-defeating. And organizations like the ADL do not do themselves any favors by using the holocaust as a source of moral authority in its endless denunciations. For example, when Norman Finkelstein published The Holocaust Industry, he himself was attacked with the "holocaust denial" slur, which is a totally inappropriate use of the phrase. Noam Chomsky came in for similar attack when he supported the free speech rights of the French holocaust denier Robert Faurisson. As the old joke goes, "There's no business like Shoah business."

Darrell said...

Free speech.
And we'll sort it out.

rhhardin said...

Mallarme describes autumn

A holocaust of red and gold

Ralph L said...

Perhaps the ADL uses a computer algorithm for their denunciations instead of human judgement.

buwaya said...

Zuckerberg is stuck in an impossible position, trying to square the circle.

His company exists in a country with utterly incompatible societies, or castes, that hate each other with an exterminating intensity.

He has a near-monopoly platform which requires a degree of editorial control, and he is trying to avoid getting into too much trouble with both sides. We all know what side he would be on, given political and institutional cover, but it is for now too dangerous to do what he would like.

D 2 said...

The first line made by Temujin in his comment needs repeated. The great excitement shown towards this and that thing, and the lack of any consistency in showing the same excitement, principle, or standard towards this and that thing over here, is creating the breakdown. The decades endorsement of grey subjectivity is cutting in all directions.

And it is a bit late in the day to hear about one truth from the same parties who would eagerly dispose of that notion for use in other contexts now so many decades ago.

AlbertAnonymous said...

Reason 5,067 why I’ll never have a Facebook page.

Zuckerberg is an arrogant prick, lies through his teeth, and seems to think he can control the users, and should, because “leftism”.

Why didn’t he simply remove all those Russian Bot posts so as to stop the election meddling?

“Censorship has its privileges”...I suppose

mccullough said...

The ADL is a business, just like Facebook.

Bob Boyd said...

Holocaust deniers are self-impeaching. Let them tell us who they are.
But this argument isn't about holocaust denial. Holocaust denial in this case is just the thin end of a wedge.

D 2 said...

I see T Duncan got to endorsement first.

Sometimes in an (invariably) heated discussion on this or that, I feeling like I am being reprimanded by the Joker in Batman on the virtues of front yard setback requirements in residential zones.

traditionalguy said...

No one cared about the Jews being slaughtered while it was going on, especially not in Europe.So when Hitler lost the guilt for that was too much for anti semites to bear. And so we politely forget about it. And we start to accept that there was nothing that made the million or so survivors scattered all over the lawless, starving chaos that was post war Europe to immigrate to Palestine. The British Army immediately went to war on the side of Arabs to stop them from getting there. But miraclously the Jewish Defense Force won. But that is real history.

Today when this subject is brought up it is a tip that we are talking to Cultists that want to con us into Jew hating . The Jew hating disease is so easily caught, that quarantining the carriers of the disease is more than reasonable.

MayBee said...

I am constantly amused by how Ms Lean In has been virtually invisible during these trying times for Facebook.

buwaya said...

Nothing consistent is possible, if the only thing that matters is tribal conflict.

This is a simplifying concept. There are no specific issues, or circumstances, or facts. There is simply ammunition.

Everything is rhetorical ammunition, in a war of extermination.

AlbertAnonymous said...

And why does Zuck always get to “reposition” without being vilified by the press? Trump is not “allowed” to “reposition” he just gets slammed for lying and being Hitler and treasonous and basically because he exists.

Oh, right. Zuck is a lefty. Never mind. They’re allowed to “reposition” without repercusssions.

Sorry, rules change so fast I sometimes can’t keep up.

Sebastian said...

I'll know they are serious when they start censoring Great Leap Forward denial.

buwaya said...

Accusations of antisemitism and holocaust denial, or far more common, accusations of unconcern towards holocaust denial, are themselves simply munitions in the modern all-consuming caste war.

One must hate the other as intensely as possible, and anything will do for that purpose.

The Vault Dweller said...

It is best to just never give into outrage mobs, who demand "Clear moral action, " or whatever they dress it up as. Once you pay the Danegeld all you get is more Danes.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Richard,

Silence is murder. NEVER forget.

Focusing on one genocide while ignoring others is a form of denial.

As for me being rational? Not necessarily. Not always. Some things, like denial of socialism's 100mm victims, including the 6mm Jews, drives me buggy.

John Henry

mockturtle said...

Darrell sez: Free speech.
And we'll sort it out.


Yep. In high school, Mein Kampf was on our recommended [but not required] reading list. I read it about the same time I read Shirer's The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. Both were illuminating. Knowing Hitler's thinking was important in planning his defeat. It's why Patton studied Rommel. Political censorship is one of the more dangerous trends of our current society.

Crazy Jane said...


Submitting to a news interview these days is like inviting Sacha Borat Cohen to your church for Sunday services. Or walking through a field of land mines. There is no way to win.

Instead, remember what those retrograde churchy types say: By their actions we shall know them.

People who get their news from Facebook are chumps. They deserve their ignorance.

richlb said...

It was real easy at one time to just allow free speech. In addition to being an idea so basic it was enshrined in the Constitution, it also takes all judgement away from the restriction side and places it on the analysis side - say what you want, people will judge you by it. Now we are muddying the waters so much and for all the wrong reasons.

Lloyd W. Robertson said...

When I think about Holocaust denial now I always think about David Irving. He was a reputable historian who brought about the destruction of his own reputation by suing for libel. A British court ruled that he deliberately said things that weren't true--so there was intent. Also on the imminent or near-term threat of violence; I suspect it is terrible but true that the whole group of "Holocaust deniers" overlaps considerably with people who want to commit violence against Jews as quickly as possible. They're not trying to settle a debate in a history seminar.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Blogger traditionalguy said...

No one cared about the Jews being slaughtered while it was going on, especially not in Europe.

FDR did, he tried to resettle them in South America, Africa anywhere but the US.

Nobody cared about all the others being murdered while it was going on either. Not by the Germans. Not by the Russians or the Chinese who killed far more in greater silence.

And still today nobody cares. Let's see a show of hands for those who know that almost 6mm (that magic number) have been murdered in the Congo in this century? But they're black and it's Africa so fuck'em, right?

Let's see some discussion of THAT holocaust on Facebook (I won't see it because I do not do Facebook and never will)

There is some discussion of the accuracy of that number too. It may be only half as many ("only" 2-3mm?) Should that discussion be censored? I don't know who is right. I only know that it is a shitload of people, whichever number is.

And crickets. Nobody cares.

John Henry

John Lynch said...

Holocaust denial was just the leading edge of attacking narrative history in the interest of present political gain. There's plenty more where that came from. Facts get in the way of politics.

The Allies did care about the Holocaust. It was public knowledge by the end of 1942, and Allied radio broadcasts made it clear that it was happening and those participating in it would be held accountable. The Allies figured the best way to end the killing was by defeating the Axis powers as quickly as possible.

German civilians at the time regarded the strategic bombing of their cities as retribution for what they did to the Jews. Some regarded it as divine retribution.

It's a bit bizarre that the Allies get so much flak for failing to stop the mass murder of people in Eastern Europe when they were engaged in a battle for survival to keep the same thing from happening to them. The eventual victory of the Allies was not a sure thing, especially in 1942 when the German army was on the Volga and U-boats were sinking ships within sight of the eastern shores of the USA.

The Allies were trying to win a war, the Axis were trying to murder people. The point of the war, for the Axis, was to take territory so the people there could be murdered.

John Lynch said...

I wrote a science fiction book set in the Congo during the 90s (should be released November 1).

It's the worst war since 1945 and no one here cares. The largest UN peacekeeping mission in the world is in eastern Congo. It's an African mess, caused by Africans, and Africans are the ones suffering.

There's no way to impose a solution other than re-colonizing the Congo, and no one wants to do that. So, chaos and violence continue until someone wins.

Seeing Red said...

FB can figure out intent in The Cinstitution.

mockturtle said...

John Lynch asserts: There's no way to impose a solution other than re-colonizing the Congo, and no one wants to do that.

I know nothing of the Congo's resources. Would there be any advantage for Belgium today to recolonize?

Oso Negro said...

@ John Henry - it’s quite possible to simply not give a fuck. I feel this way about the misfortunes of untold millions. This includes the 6 million you claim for the Congo. But if you are prepared to dedicate your life to setting things right, I have enough frequent flier miles to spot you a one way ticket to Brazzaville. I also have enough guns and ammo to get your one man crusade started, assuming the airline permits it in checked baggage. I don’t really think you will need a lot, as I don’t think you will last so long. But who’s to say?

buwaya said...

No, colonialism of the old school is not cost-effective today, no matter the natural resources, if you have to deal with a large population of that sort. This population will be an endless resource sink. The Belgians (and all other colonialists) saw this clearly. It was in the air, so to speak, a controversial question, by the late 19th century.

A depopulated wasteland would be another matter.

Ralph L said...

Imperialism is Right Out in Europe, unless it's being done to them.
And shouldn't the Belgians wait until there's more lebensraum before recolonizing? They were so benign the first time.

I think I read the Congo was the personal domain of the King of the Belgians, not ruled by his government. Prince Albert would be aghast at his cousins.

Teller said...

For years I've been trying like hell to get FB and Twitter on my flip-phone. Althouse has been a great alternative.

Known Unknown said...

"Oh, right. Zuck is a lefty."

I bet deep down he's not as lefty as people would like him to be, a la John Lennon.

Known Unknown said...

... Or Bob Dylan.

Critter said...

"Or Bob Dylan"

No one who believes in the truth as he sees it can be a lefty all the time.

No one who things beyond stage one can support lefty solutions that generally create secondary issues greater than the primary one. Witness the Great Society's noble attempt to eliminate poverty which has led to scourge of fatherless boys and girls.

J. Farmer said...

@John Lynch:

There's no way to impose a solution other than re-colonizing the Congo, and no one wants to do that. So, chaos and violence continue until someone wins.

The Congo is also one of the most ethnically diverse places on the planet. Apparently, diversity is not their strength.

rhhardin said...

Recolonizing the Congo is cheaper, transportationwise, than moving their population to Belgium. All the blacks want is white rule, they don't care where.

Known Unknown said...

Is Holocaust Denial all that popular though? I mean, talk about the fringiest fringes.

It's like the KKK. What's the actual membership? How many of those are FBI plants?

Ralph L said...

one of the most ethnically diverse places

Their tribal cultures run the gamut from A to B.

JOKE. I know shit about the Congo.

n.n said...

Holocaust, Great Leaps, Purges, Hacking... 60-70 million Planned in America and hundreds of millions (billions?) more globally over decades in selective and one-child schemes. The Nile runs deep.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

Africa is being effectively colonized by the Chinese. A kind of immigration reform to relieve the pressure forced by their one-child abortion rites. That and redistributive change of natural resources.

mockturtle said...

Recolonizing the Congo is cheaper, transportationwise, than moving their population to Belgium.

Good point, rhhardin! And Nigeria to Italy, etc, etc.

JAORE said...

one of the most ethnically diverse places

Their tribal cultures run the gamut from A to B.

In America, the tint of ones skin can, apparently, determine your politics, goodness and rights of victimhood.

In parts of Africa it can't even keep you from being hacked to death by someone with an identical degree of melanin.

Francisco D said...

"The solution to bad speech is not censorship, but more speech."

That is the classically liberal position which seems to have been abandoned by the Left.

University professors are teaching minority students that "bad speech" is harmful to them and needs to be censored.

I fear for the future of the First Amendment.

Ralph L said...

You won't get Europeans in anything more spartan or crowded than a cruiseliner, so I think rh is wrong, plus you'll need vehicles, roads, and fuel stations in country.

Most of Belgium is already densely populated.
I recently saw 2 Netflix detective series set in the Ardennes (one in France).
Lots of trees, but I don't know if Congans like hills, and the backwoods locals are probably as insular as ours and twice as racist. They'll also need more clothes for the winter.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Blogger Oso Negro said...

@ John Henry - it’s quite possible to simply not give a fuck. I feel this way about the misfortunes of untold millions.

Including the Jews murdered by the National Socialists?

It's OK. I have no problem with you or anyone not giving a fuck. My problem is inconsistency. Everybody gives a fuck about the Jewish victims, most people don't even know abut the other 6mm non-Jews.

Or the scores of millions murdered by other socialists in the 20th century. Or the Armenian genocide. Or the Congo genocide

etc.

Somehow the Jewish genocide is special and I doubt that I have gone 2 consecutive days in the past 60 years without hearing something about it and about "The 6 million". I almost never hear abut the other 6mm. I get pushback "Denial" when I mention it. Lots of supposedly educated people doubt it happened.

Why are they not labeled deniers?

I have been accused of being anti-Semitic for even mentioning that it wass just Jews that were murdered en masse by National Socialism. I've been told that mentioning it diminishes, somehow, the significance of the Jewish deaths.

I've seen the 30-40mm or so murdered by Stalin and his predecessors and successors denied. I've seen them admitted to but excused. The expression "You can't make an omlet without breaking some eggs" comes to mind, having heard it many times.

Ditto the even more hideous Mao.

This is to the extent that anyone even knows about these exterminations. I've been called a liar for mentioning them. told it could not have happened.

The Cambodian genocide seems to get blamed mainly on Nixon rather than Pol Pot.

So if you want to not give a fuck, fine by me. I'm even with you to some extent. Not much we can do about it even if we do give a fuck.

But let's not not give a fuck selectively.

But let's not forget, either.

John Henry

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Blogger Known Unknown said...

Is Holocaust Denial all that popular though? I mean, talk about the fringiest fringes.

I'm not a denier. I accept the 6mm figure with the quibble that it was not actually 6mm but more like 5.7mm. It may not be 5.7mm either. there are different numbers from different sources but it is in that neighborhood.

But even that quibble about legitimate IMHO rounding has gotten me in trouble.

The Jewish Holocaust is, in one sense, like Global Whatsit. IT CANNOT BE QUESTIONED!!!! Anyone who questions it, in any way, is to be thrown into the pit of eternal damnation. So most people keep quiet about it.

That is why you seldom see it discussed.

It differs from Global Whatsit in one important aspect. The Jewish Holocaust story is mostly, more or less, factually true.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

there are different numbers from different sources but it is in that neighborhood.

I should have said "seems to be in that neighborhood" I doubt that anyone knows exactly, though many claim to.

John Henry

buwaya said...

None of these ancient dead means a thing, for most people today, other than as a piece of rhetorical ammunition.

None of the Filipino dead, or the Polish, or the Chinese, or anyone else massacred and starved to death in WWII matters much in geopolitics.

Other than to their relatives and survivors, or in their own countries.

Ralph L said...

A gentile friend of mine who lived in NYC got tired of hearing about it.

One unique thing about the Jewish Holocaust was that it was the culmination of millennia of persecution by Europeans throughout Europe and the Levant.
Plus, the Jews run the media /jk.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Re the Belgian's in the Congo:

As someone pointed out, it was not really the "Belgian" Congo. It was the personal property of Leopold who happened to be King of Belgium.

I doubt anyone wants them back. As Conrad said in The Heart of Darkness "The horror, the horror" The Belgians in the Congo were incredibly horrible people. On a scale with Hitler, Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot. It got better later int eh 20th century but not much.

A good, modern, history, is King Leopold's Ghost.

A good, contemporaneous, book is Conrad's Heart of Darkness. This was largely autobiographical, though written as a novel. He spent time piloting a steamboat on the Congo in the 1890s and he was Marlow. (He was also Marlow in Youth, but I digress)

He was accused, at the time, of exaggerating the horror. He said he had toned it down to avoid being accused of exaggeration. What he saw, he said, was far worse than in the book.

Another interesting book about the Congo is Blood River by Timothy Butcher. In about 2000 he traveled west across Africa to the head of the Congo River than down the river to the Atlantic.

Use the portal, of course.

John L, I am hesitant to even ask what a sci-fi about the Congo might be like. Sounds like it would be pretty offbeat. In other words, just the kind of book I would enjoy. Tell us when it publishes.

Africa is a continent that has always fascinated me but I have less than zero desire to ever go there. I don't care how many FF miles I am offered.

John Henry

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Blogger buwaya said...

None of the Filipino dead, or the Polish, or the Chinese, or anyone else massacred and starved to death in WWII matters much in geopolitics.

I owe you an apology, Buwaya. I know about the genocide in the Philipines and should have mentioned it out of courtesy if nothing else. I know about Homas murdering 100,000 or so in Manila in a tantrum after they realized they had lost. No military reason at all. Manila was an open city.

I know about the 250,000 Chinese civilians murdered in early 1942 in retaliation for the Doolittle raid. I wonder how many people have any Idea who Jimmy Doolittle was and what his raid did. Not many, I imagine. Even fewer know about the 250m Chinese.

The 250m were only a drop in the bucket in terms of total Chinese civilians murdered by the Japanese between 1933 and 1945.

Maybe should have mentioned the millions of Pakistanis killed by Indians and the Millions of Indians killed by Pakistanis at partition. Lot of other very large scale genocides that should have been included in my all too brief list.

Amost none of which were "genocides" since almost none were race based. Still, it is a convenient term to use.

John Henry

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Blogger Ralph L said...

Plus, the Jews run the media /jk.

OH, NO!!!!! You didn't really go there. Saying that makes you an anti-semite. Go straight to Hell, do not pass go, do not collect $200.

That is another of those things that shall not be mentioned.

Even if it is true.

Ben Stein has written some interesting stuff on the influence of Jews in the entertainment industry.

So has Thomas Sowell.

Neal Gabler, the film historian/critic wrote a whole book on how a dozen or so NY Jews, who were barred from working in the film business in NYC where it was then based, founded Hollywood. A World of their Own is a fascinating book.

Jack Warner's daughters history of the Brothers Warner (of Warner Brothers) wrote a great history of the company and the industry a few years ago.

But Ralph, shut up if you know what's good for you. You just can't say that.

John Henry

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

BTW, Buwaya,

I also know about the American genocide in the Philipines after the 1898 war with Spain. A shameful episode in our country's history.

And, to be clear, the 100m murdered in Manila was only a part of the genocide of Phillipinos by the Japanese 1941-5

John Henry

Achilles said...

Nobody cared about all the others being murdered while it was going on either. Not by the Germans. Not by the Russians or the Chinese who killed far more in greater silence.

The aristocracy didn’t care.

Most people did care.

The globalists adopted the holocaust after they committed it because the little people forced them to/

Later they adopted the holocaust to impose speech restrictions and to smear their political opponents as Nazis.

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Oso Negro said...

@ John Henry - I assure you, I don't discriminate in who I don't give a fuck about. If it happens to my family, my friends, or my neighbors, I give a fuck. Everyone else, not so much.

dreams said...

Watch this CNBC video all you looney tune liberals out there, yeah. Facebook is mentioned too.

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/07/19/watch-cnbcs-full-interview-with-steve-bannon-at-delivering-alpha.html

DanTheMan said...

>>University professors are teaching minority students that "bad speech" is harmful

University professors are teaching minority students that "bad speech" is violence, and therefore violence is an appropriate response.

As I have said before, the lefty motto:
Your free speech is violence.
My violence is free speech.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Thanks, Dreams,

I'm 2 weeks past a deadline trying to finish a paper and you throw this at me? OK, I thought I might be able to listen to it in the background. Ha!

Screw deadlines. This is too interesting.

I like the reporter. She seems pretty good but Bannon will not let her decide3 the direction.

Well worth watching.

John Henry

Oso Negro said...

The “violence” of bad speech isn’t quite like that of a fist. The violence of a fist isn’t quite like a slug from a .45. Sesame Street used to have a song like this.

William Chadwick said...

To me this is all part of the wider and more significant problem of Democide Denial . . . or if not outright denial, certainly turning a blind eye to it.

R.J. Chatt said...

Holocaust denial isn't just a fringe of a fringe without consequences. It's a major rationale in the Muslim world, used by the likes of Abbas and the Iranian Mullahs, etc., to rewrite the history of present day Israel. Jewish displaced survivors of death camps who came to Palestine are instantly transformed by Holocaust deniers into colonialists acting as white supremacists. Falsifying major historical events is very significant, and efforts to perpetuate major falsehoods should not be tolerated.

There are definitely at least two commenters here imo who would have no problem seeing the destruction of the Jewish people, might even celebrate it. A few others who oddly complain about Jews memorializing their history and criticize that others do not, as if that is also the fault of Jews.

The ever present resentment towards Jews for being capable and hardworking people, underrepresented in the population but overrepresented in high achievement, is good to know. (Jordan Peterson has recorded some good Youtube videos on this topic.) I wouldn't want to censor the speech of those who hate or resent Jews though. Jews, even completely nonobservant Jews like Zuckerberg, should remember them too. Let's just keep the historical record as accurate as possible.

mockturtle said...

The Qur'an would be banned for hate speech; the Bible would be banned for hate speech. Recently, part of our Declaration of Independence was banned for hate speech. As a Christian, I can't ask that the Qur'an be banned but not the Bible. Everyone--and I mean EVERYONE--should be properly alarmed by the present insidious erosion of our First Amendment. The bans you want enforcing today will come back and bite you in the ass tomorrow.

J. Farmer said...

@RJ Chatt:

Holocaust denial isn't just a fringe of a fringe without consequences. It's a major rationale in the Muslim world, used by the likes of Abbas and the Iranian Mullahs, etc., to rewrite the history of present day Israel.

An important point, and it is inverse to the problem that often arises in the West, in which the memory of the holocaust is used to justify and apologize for the Israeli occupation.

R.J. Chatt said...

@J. Farmer: that's a false trope. There are no Israelis or American Jews I know of who claim that the Holocaust is the rationale for the presense of Israeli troops in the disputed territories of Judea and Samaria, aka known as "the West Bank," a term invented by Jordan when it occupied the same land. But they were never called occupiers btw. The reason for Israeli forces in that area is the continued terrorist actions by Hamas, Fatah, the PA, etc., to attack Israel, to murder Israelis, to advance their agenda to "Free Palestine from the river to the sea."

J. Farmer said...

@RJ Chatt:

The case is made in Finkelstein's book that he holocaust did not begin to play a prominent role in American Jewish life until after the 1967 war. Nachum Goldman, founder of the World Jewish Congress and president of the World Zionist Organization wrote in 1981:

"Jewish suffering during the Holocaust no longer will serve as a protection ... To use [it] as an excuse for the bombing of Lebanon, for instance, as Menachem Begin does, is a kind of 'Hillul Hashem' [sacrilege], a banalization of the sacred tragedy of the Shoah."

The reason for Israeli forces in that area is the continued terrorist actions by Hamas, Fatah, the PA, etc., to attack Israel, to murder Israelis, to advance their agenda to "Free Palestine from the river to the sea."

How do civilian settlements in the West Bank, for example in Hebron, contribute to Israeli security?

Richard said...

It never ceases to amaze me that as soon as the subject of the holocaust comes up, the anti-Semites seems to come out of the woodwork. Of course you are not an anti-Semite. You are just a critic of the State of Israel and some of your best friends are Jews.

J. Farmer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
J. Farmer said...

It never ceases to amaze me that as soon the subject of Israel comes up, the accusations of anti-Semitism seem to come out of the woodwork. It's sort of how whenever you try to discuss race, immigration, or gender, SJW's start calling you racist, xenophobic, and sexist. Odd how people normally so contemptuous of that strategy immediately deploy it over the subject of Israel.

Richard said...

Maybe if you also criticized the Palestinians you denial would be a little more credibility.

J. Farmer said...

@Richard:

Maybe if you also criticized the Palestinians you denial would be a little more credibility.

And if you criticized the Palestinians, and I said "Ah ha, you're obviously motivated by Islamophobia as evidenced by the fact that you don't criticize Israel," would you find that a very compelling argument? If not, you shouldn't deploy it against others.

When RJ Chatty remarked how holocaust denial is a useful tool in Middle Eastern propaganda, I remarked that it was "an important point." And in fact, both sides rely on official narratives that are at odds with empirical reality in order to justify their political positions. I criticize Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states all the time, and oddly no one here ever accuses me of harboring anti-Arab sentiments.

And also the reason I more frequently criticize Israel is because you don't hear people in the US saying there should be "no daylight" between the US and Palestine. The Israel lobby, for numerous historical and cultural reasons, plays a much larger role in US politics than the Palestinian lobby.

Richard said...

"And also the reason I more frequently criticize Israel is because you don't hear people in the US saying there should be "no daylight" between the US and Palestine. The Israel lobby, for numerous historical and cultural reasons, plays a much larger role in US politics than the Palestinian lobby."

J. Farmer, the righter of wrongs. Nobody ever takes the side of those poor Palestinians. The UN is alway passing resolutions condemning them. They just can't get a fair shake. Oh, my mistake. It is not the Palestinians that they are condemning. Also, as you well know, there is no lack of support for the Palestinians in the US. You are well aware of the BDS movement. There is no shortage of student associations, academic groups, and churches that have passed resolutions condemning Israel. But according to you, their side of the conflict is not being heard.

Known Unknown said...

"And also the reason I more frequently criticize Israel is because you don't hear people in the US saying there should be "no daylight" between the US and Palestine. The Israel lobby, for numerous historical and cultural reasons, plays a much larger role in US politics than the Palestinian lobby."

If the Palestinians would elect an actual government whose stated goals did not include the destruction of Israel, perhaps things could change.

mockturtle said...

If the Palestinians would elect an actual government whose stated goals did not include the destruction of Israel, perhaps things could change.

Yep. At no time has the Palestinian leadership stated that Israel has a right to exist.

buwaya said...

The problem with the Arabs is a combination of viciousness and incapacity, in their public relations as well as in their politics and public policy.

Eisenhower gave both the Palestinians and Egypt a stay of execution, when he shut down the Anglo-French-Israeli adventure of 1956. Told them to skedaddle and give everything back. Did the US get any credit? Did Nasser figure out where his bread was buttered?
Did he make peace, dealing from strength, with a mighty patron behind him?

No.

Largely the same thing ever since.

narciso said...

True, be we might still have dodged a bullet, had Nasser been deposed who would been waiting in the wings Hassan Ramadan.

Now there's a reason why Reagan didn't follow through on toppling qaddaffi because of what might have come later.

narciso said...


Seeing that we made that mistake in 2011, this is perhaps the best of bad options

http://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/menasource/libya-s-warring-parties-play-a-dangerous-game-working-with-madkhali-salafists

J. Farmer said...

@Richard:

The UN is alway passing resolutions condemning them. They just can't get a fair shake. Oh, my mistake. It is not the Palestinians that they are condemning.

The overwhelming majority of that is the result of Israel building settlements in contravention of international treaties they signed up. And this is not just my opinion or the opinion of some rabid anti-Israel group. It's been the position of the US and all of our major allies for at least 40 years. It was the opinion of the chief counsel to Israeli Foreign Affairs in 1967. But Theodor Meron is probably just another hateful anti-Semite. Right, Rich?

You are well aware of the BDS movement.

Yes, and at least 27 states have anti-BDS laws on the books now.

But according to you, their side of the conflict is not being heard.

Uh, reread the exact words of mine you quoted: "The Israel lobby, for numerous historical and cultural reasons, plays a much larger role in US politics than the Palestinian lobby." That is not remotely the same as saying "their side of the conflict is not being heard."

narciso said...

So when Jordan occupied the west bank and Egypt Gaza in 1949, that wasn't a treaty vilation.

J. Farmer said...

@Known Unknown:

If the Palestinians would elect an actual government whose stated goals did not include the destruction of Israel, perhaps things could change.

@mockturtle:

Yep. At no time has the Palestinian leadership stated that Israel has a right to exist.

"Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday said that the Palestinian people recognize Israel's right to exist and they hope the Israeli government will respond by 'recognizing the Palestinian state on the borders of the land occupied in 1967.' The PA president's comments came in a speech to the Dutch parliament in the Hague."

Full article here.

"The signing of the Declaration of Principles marks a new era...I would like to confirm the following PLO commitments: The PLO recognizes the right of the State of Israel to exist in peace and security."

-Letters of Mutual Recognition, September 1993

Meanwhile, can either of you ever recall hearing about how the Likud charter is an obstacle to peace. It states, in part: "The Government of Israel flatly rejects the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state west of the Jordan river. The Palestinians can run their lives freely in the framework of self-rule, but not as an independent and sovereign state. Thus, for example, in matters of foreign affairs, security, immigration, and ecology, their activity shall be limited in accordance with imperatives of Israel's existence, security and national needs."

J. Farmer said...

@narciso:

So when Jordan occupied the west bank and Egypt Gaza in 1949, that wasn't a treaty vilation.

Indeed it was. The only countries that recognized Jordan's annexation in 1950 was Britain, Iraq, and Paksistan. The international community considered Jordan's annexation illegal. And yet, I don't recall anyone ever ascribing that to irrational anti-Jordanian hatred.

narciso said...

And what did they do about, did they issue a hundred un resolutions, rhetorical.

J. Farmer said...

@narciso:

And what did they do about, did they issue a hundred un resolutions, rhetorical.

Let's see...the UN General Armistice Agreement, the Tripartite Agreement, the Jordan-Israel Mixed Armistice Commission, the UN Truce Supervision Organization, and UN Security Resolution 127 (unanimously passed). There were also dozens of UN general assembly resolutions calling for a negotiated settlement of the Arab-Israeli war between 1950 and 1967.

Rich Rostrom said...

Ralph L said... I think I read the Congo was the personal domain of the King of the Belgians, not ruled by his government.

The "Congo Free State" was a personal possession of King Leopold II from 1885 to 1908. But the scandals about his exploitation of the Congo led to its being annexed by the Kingdom of Belgium in 1908.