Holocaust: – An Open Letter to “Concerned Reader”
Dear Concerned Reader
I wrote that without Christianity the holocaust would have never happened. You called my statement “inflammatory” and “speculative.” You justify your position with the claim that Hitler and the Nazis were not religious people.
I will ask you some questions.
Are you aware that the crime of the holocaust was committed by many people from many nations? Germans, Austrians, Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Hungarians, Romanians, Poles, Frenchmen, Dutchmen, Norwegians, Belgians, and Slovakians all provided manpower for this crime to be committed. Some people from these nations actively killed Jews while many more participated by providing technical assistance. Americans, British, and Swiss also participated by sending Jewish refugees back to Germany.
Why did these people from such a diversity of backgrounds all hate the Jews? What do Hitler’s personal religious beliefs have to do with the Ukrainian executioners, with the French policemen who rounded up Jews for the Germans or with the Austrian clergymen who gladly turned in their records so that the Nazis can identify their victims?
Are you perhaps not aware that for centuries upon dark centuries the various denominations of Christianity have been teaching that Jews are children of the devil, that they rob their host countries of their wealth, that they are deceitful, that they are morally corrupt and that they murder Christian children? Do you not realize that the official mouthpieces of the various denominations of Christianity consistently defamed the Jews through every means of communication available to them? Did you read any Catholic or Protestant periodicals from pre-war Europe? Are you aware that the various denominations of Christianity taught people to associate hatred of Jews with religious virtue? Are you aware that this slander was not a peripheral teaching of the various Churches but that the subject of the depravity of the Jew was a popular subject of discussion for these men of the cloth?
You have an intense and sustained international propaganda campaign against the Jewish people. This propaganda campaign is consistently maintained for almost 2000 years in many countries. Do you think so little of man that you believe that without this massive propaganda campaign that disdain for the Jew would have run so deep?
If you dismiss my connection between the deep hatred that the Church cultivated against the Jew and the crime committed by the members of the Church against the Jew as mere speculation then please tell me what would be acceptable to you as “cause and effect” in the study of history?
I have some more questions for you. You dismiss Hitler and Nazism as being irreligious. But Hitler and many Nazis saw themselves as Christians. Many of them did not respect established Churches, which they saw as corrupt, but most of them saw themselves as followers of Jesus. They believed that their hatred of Jews was an authentic expression of their faith in Jesus. Even those who were not religious at all understood that their hatred for Jews was an honorable Christian virtue. On what basis do you ignore their claims? You disassociate the hatred of these men from Christianity and you attribute it to the general depravity of man. What is the basis for your position?
You then compound the difficulty by taking the opposite position when it comes to charity and love. You readily believe people who tell you that their charity and love are expressions of their faith in Jesus. Why do you so quickly accept their claims? Why do you not attribute their goodness to the general conscience of man? Why the double standard?
If you believe that my logic is faulty or that my facts are wrong then please correct me. Otherwise, retract your position.
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Yisroel C. Blumenthal