Welcome to my Blog dedicated to educate, expose and call to action against the New Anti-Semitism.

Te opinions expressed on this site are not necessarily all shared by Olivier. WARNING:By clicking "Next Blog" in the upper left you will automatically leave my blog and be redirected elsewhere in the "blogosphere" with no connection to my blog.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Was the Fate of WWII Jews Sealed by the Allies?

     While in Paris this week, I had a chance of viewing a new documentary on the Holocaust that caused me to ponder on the fate of my people during WWII. It was extremely uncomfortable to watch, as I discovered what even I had subconsciously buried deep into my own mental archives of the Shoah.
     The powerful and revealing documentary titled Ce qu'ils savaient (What they knew), covered some recently declassified war files about the knowledge that the Allies had about the fate of European Jews and what they did or "didn't do" with them.
     From 1939 until 1943, a multitude of reports from various sources within Europe got to the hands of Sir Winston Churchill and Joseph Stalin at first, and eventually also reached General Charles de Gaulle and President Roosevelt. Yet, very little if anything was done to reach out to the Jewish communities of Europe to warn them, let alone protect or even rescue them.
     After the war, the civilized world has been told about General Dwight D. Eisenhower (then Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe) and General Patton discovering some of the Nazi carnage at Ohdruf in April of 1945. The visit to the camp and the subsequent efforts to liberate it and many others was very real. So was the utter repugnance experienced by the Allied troops regarding the unspeakable crimes committed by the Nazis against the Jews. But it is doubtful that General Eisenhower's surprise was really a complete surprise. Based on the declassified reports now available, while the shock of the death toll and inhuman conditions of the camps were likely real, possibly even appearing surreal, the facts of the carnage couldn't be new to the American general.
     To be fair to General Eisenhower, we must realize that from the moment he was exposed to the bestiality of the camps, he deliberately shared and documented as much as he could in an effort to avoid  any future re-writing of history that would minimize or even exclude the Shoah. I'd hate to have seen the damage done by Holocaust deniers if Eisenhower hadn't said or done anything! I commend him for that. But was was it too little, too late?
     One could speculate about the reasons (if any) why Auschwitz-Birkenau was never bombed even though allied forces had an aerial map and flew as close as 8 kms from the Camp?
     One could also wonder why De Gaulle, Churchill, Stalin and Roosevelt kept so many reports hidden from the general public?
     It has been said that rescuing the Jewish people was a task of such gigantic proportions in a time of war that Allied forces were overwhelmed at the idea. Yet I wonder what would have really happened if the Allies looked for a solution with the same energy, resources and infrastructure as the Nazis who implemented "the Final Solution to the Jewish Question"? Would more Jewish people have survived? Without a doubt, Yes!
     But more important than revisiting the past is planning for the future, and we cannot change the events of the past, we can certainly learn from them and prepare for a future that wouldn't include such barbarism. 
     Government and the military are very much needed to maintain order and safety in any country. So, my concern shouldn't be perceived as an attack on either. This being said, I feel strongly about the personal responsibility that each one of us has to fight xenophobia in general and antisemitism in particular. Thus, we should never wait or rely upon government or the military to do so.
     The process begins with recognizing the nature of the human heart. We must admit in all humility that the human heart is wicked, and that includes yours and mine as well.
 “The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; Who can understand it?  (Jeremiah 17:9).
     There is nothing we can do to change our heart on our own, except to recognize our shortcomings and depravity, so that we can ask God to give us a new heart and make us into a new creature capable of loving even our own enemies (Matthew 5:44). How much more then could we love Israel and the Jewish people who ARE NOT our enemies?
     As we are already into the second decade of the 21st Century. We are surrounded by technology making global communication possible at the click o a button. Yet, we are also seeing a strong, viral and  pandemic rebirth of antisemitism. All the Facebooks, Twitters and blogs of the world will not suffice if human beings don't stop their self absorbed daily routines for a moment and start caring about my people more compassionately.
     Do not rely on others to reach out and help those in needs, but instead rely on God to give YOU the strength, compassion and resources to reach out to others.
     God can use you to love my people with the love of Messiah Yeshua. The fate of the Jewish people is not sealed but it is in the hands of those who will allow God to guide them. Be one of them, you will be blessed!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

All Christians Are Anti-Semites! Right?

     About three weeks ago, I wrote a commentary following a new request made by some Christian leaders and lead by the Presbyterian denomination, asking the US congress to investigate how Israel is using funds and possibly "violating human rights". In it, I exposed the double-standard used by Presbyterian USA in falsely pointing the finger at Israel. But far worse was done by completely ignoring some real human rights issues such as the $450 million given to Egypt's leadership while they clearly are tied to the Muslim Brotherhood. Egypt's president Mohammed Mursi has since then showed his true colors as he responded "amen" to an Egyptian cleric's prayer to destroy Israel. That's worth 450 million of our American dollars, right?
     To be sure, the letter sent to congress wasn't only signed by Presbyterian leaders. Some Lutherans, Methodists, Baptists, Mennonites and members of the Church of Christ were quick to join the ranks of the Presbyterian USA denomination and became co-signers. It goes without saying that the statement they made garnered much criticism from the Jewish community.
     The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) who has been known for being in favor of inter-faith dialogue, finally decided to sever their ties with the "Christian leadership team". They in turn, wrote a letter back, and cancelled an upcoming interfaith meeting that they would like to see replaced by a summit of all key Church leaders and Jewish community leaders to resolve the issue and build an interfaith future together. JCPA Chair Larry Gold said it best:

“It is the right of these Christian leaders to say what they want to Congress or anyone else ...And it is our right to say ‘enough is enough.’  We will continue to be vigilant against anti-Christian, anti-Muslim, and anti-Palestinian activities wherever and whenever we see them because it is the right thing to do.  If only the leaders of these churches cared a fraction as much about the anti-Israel and anti-Zionist activities that have found comfortable homes in their denominations. How tragic that some of our counterparts in the churches are not only silent to this invective, they are responsible for it. ”
     While the JCPA doesn't equate the signers of the "Christian" letter with all Christians, they have no choice but to draw some conclusions of their own based on the anti-Zionist diatribes they continue to receive. I wouldn't be surprised if the JCPA was pondering upon this recent display of anti-Israel sentiment and start believing that all Christians are anti-Semites.
     I am convinced that is it always unhealthy to generalize, but this being said, the "Christian" letter to congress was very damaging on several levels:
     • Damaging for Israel in general: An attempt at diverting funds away from Israel is always going to be detrimental to the only democracy of the middle east and the only ally to America from that region. When considering that the funds were earmarked for Israel's armament and thus, defense against her neighboring enemies, it is not only damaging but it is also criminal. The accusation that Israel might have violated the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act and/or the U.S. Arms Export Control Act is simply unfounded and libelous.
     • Damaging for worldwide Jews in particular": In the last 15 years or so, we have seen a preponderance of violent acts against Jewish people around the globe, regardless of their upbringing, level of religiosity or even geographical locations, simply because of the world's assumption than anything tied to Israel is automatically tied to all Jews. If Israel is perceived as guilty by anyone, then they must be guilty AND by proxy, all Jews are equally responsible. So there is no question in my mind that this "perceived" Israel's violation of human rights by some Christian denominations will spill over the worldwide Jewish community. Facts simply don't matter any more!
     • Damaging for all Christians": The mere fact that several Christian denominations have joined the ranks of the Presbyterian USA Church DOES NOT mean that all Christians are anti-Israel or anti-Semitic. It actually doesn't even mean that all Presbyterians, Lutherans, Methodists, Baptists, Mennonites and/or members of the Church of Christ are anti-Semitic. This being said, enough damage has been done against my people in the name of "Christ" and "Christianity" over the last 2,000 years, that we certainly do not need any further anti-Israel, anti-Zionist or anti-Semitic rhetoric (I am not even convinced that we can truly separate the three anyway). As a result of a history written with blood and tears, it is unfortunately in the fabric of my people not to trust "Christians". Followers of Yeshua of Nazareth have to work very hard to establish trust between them and their Jewish friends. Yet, followers of Yeshua need also to be followers of His written Word in which we learn that God has a special plan for Israel (Jeremiah 29:11), loves the Jewish people unconditionally (Zechariah 2:8) and will repay all people in kind based on their treatment of the Jewish people (Genesis 12:1-3).
     So, not all Christians are anti-Semites but many anti-Semites are claiming to be Christians, or at least so appear to be in the eyes of my Jewish people. 
     I am Jewish and I have followed Yeshua of Nazareth for the last 29 years, yet I hesitate in calling myself a Christian because of the stigma that is now attached to the term. This by no means invalidates the need for all people including ALL JEWISH PEOPLE to trust Yeshua for their salvation. 
     Unfortunately, the reputation of all Christians just got a little worse because of a few and their anti-Semitic agenda.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Anti-Semitism: From Nuclear Bomb to Cyber Bomb!

     Having spent the first 27 years of my life in France, I take pride saying that French people make the best pastries in the world, if not the best food overall. Culturally speaking, over the centuries, France has provided the world with some of the most talented artists, composers, writers, musicians and other creative minds. Frankly, even though I have now been an American citizen for almost eight years, I still very much appreciate my French heritage. There is truth in the statement"You can take me out of France but you can't take France out of me!".
     This being said, there is one aspect of my heritage that I despise wholeheartedly, and that is the chronic anti-Semitism that has plagued the French people for centuries. Being born out of a Jewish family in Paris and having lost part of that family in the Holocaust, anti-Semitism has been a permanent dark cloud over my family and my people, and as it appears, the cloud is thickening and darkening on an almost daily basis in France. To be sure, France is a symptom of the disease and the rest of the world is certainly not imune.
     We have heard from historians that before he was stopped, Hitler was only months away from acquiring the atomic bomb. Had he gotten his hands on the bomb, the consequences would have been catastrophic for Europe in general and Jewish people in particular. Then again if you ask me, for someone "without the bomb" he did a pretty thorough job in his attempt to completely annihilate European Jewry!
     The question I have come to ask myself is: What would have Hitler done if he had the "cyber bomb" at his disposal?
     Hitler might be long gone, but his disciples live on. Today's anti-Semites might not be in a position to drop a nuclear warhead on the Jews (except maybe Iran on Israel if we don't stop them very soon). Nevertheless, the advent of the Internet has allowed Jew haters to spread propaganda against my people at warp speed and to more people than Hitler could have ever dreamed of. The recruiting of a global army against the Jews has never been easier than in our age of world wide web, Internet and social medias. The technology is constantly moving forward, and the creative minds of those who seek to demonize the Jews are flowing with ideas. These ideas are translated into slander, libel and hate crimes faster than one can push the "enter" key on their keyboard. As the old monster of Jew hatred is getting a global face lift, anti-Semites around the globe gather in a constant virtual community where they congregate and conspire against Israel and the Jewish people.
     On October 10, Twitter®  was bombarded with tweets originated from France and connected to #unbonjuif, meaning "a good Jew". A plethora of tweets were received, sent and re-tweeted and are now causing the authorities to discuss if and where the line was crossed between freedom of speech and hate crime. One is to wonder how much damage can be done in the short string of words constituting a tweet, I will let you decide as you read some of them here:
• A good Jew is a dead Jew
• A good Jew should be done medium/rare
• A good Jew doesn't exist
• A good Jew is hard to cook
     Of course, if that doesn't convince you, maybe tweets linking to a picture of a concentration camp or to a picture of a pile of ashes will help you see the sickness in all this. Critics of the tweets were quickly told that the people behind the messages were "spoofing kindly". I'd hate to see what they would say if they were really anti-Semitic?
     Tweets are the cyber-graffiti of the 21st century. They allow people to express their opinions, but with much more danger than the old school spray paint on the building wall.
     • While painted graffiti expressed an opinion that mostly remained anonymous, tweets are attached to people and always have an identity.
     • While graffiti became disconnected from their author the moment he/she left the area where the slogan had been placed, tweets become instantly interconnected to a global network of millions. All we have to do is look at how the "Arab Spring" was kept informed to understand the power of the social media.
     • While it is still possible (yet often difficult) to catch and stop the author of a graffiti in the act and charge him/her accordingly (including making them clean the surface they had defaced), it is somewhat impossible to stop Twitter® from spreading a tweet once it has gone viral.
     Twitter® and Facebook® currently provide a platform that unfortunately is legally uncharted. Much remains to be discovered, monitored and controlled. In the meantime, the old monster of anti-Semitism will continue to tighten its grip on my people. Propaganda, recruiting and calls to action will only increase in occurrence and intensity.
     Anti-Semitism has been viral in the hearts of many for centuries, and I am terrified to see the damage it could do once it really goes viral in cyberspace. I am afraid that it is well on its way already, and once again, it would behoove us to speak up against it. After all, if Twitter® and Facebook® can be used for evil, they certainly can be used for good. The choice is ours!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Christians Demand for Israel's Hands to be Tied!

     Israel's foes have always been numerous. From the day God orchestrated the birth of the People and Nation of Israel, her enemies have been working overtime towards her complete annihilation. One creative way after another, the enemies of God's people have attempted to eradicate Israel and the Jewish people from the face of the earth. Every angle imaginable, being historical, geographical, racial, political, has been used. I am always amazed at the energy consumed by the world to demonize Israel. The scapegoats of humanity continue to be the recipients of the world's hatred (directed behind the scene by the ultimate enemy of God: Satan himself).
     So on one hand, as unfortunate as it is, we have come to expect that people like Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, Hugo Chavez or Khaled Mashal would promote antisemitism and the destruction of the "Zionist enemy!"
     On the other hand, it is very disturbing and so shameful when Israel and the Jewish people are targeted by people claiming to be Christians. While it is not my intention to determine if these "so-called" Christians are indeed genuine followers of Yeshua of Nazareth (the Jewish Messiah and Savior of the world), I cannot help but think that if they spent a little more time in their Bible and a little less time lobbying against Israel, they might be surprised at what they find out about the Jewish people. 
     A new announcement was made this week by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and many other denominations as listed at the bottom of their letter, that could negatively affect Israel and by extension those involved in promoting the policy change. In their own words, the signers of the letter urged:
     "...an immediate investigation into possible violations by Israel of the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act and the U.S. Arms Export Control Act, which respectively prohibit assistance to any country which engages in a consistent pattern of human rights violations and limit the use of U.S. weapons to 'internal security' or 'legitimate self-defense.'"
     I wonder what they mean by "consistent pattern of human rights violations"? Furthermore, In their letter to congress, they include a link to a 2011 report by the State Department and they state that:
     "This is made clear in the most recent 2011 State Department Country Report on    Human Rights Practices covering Israel and the Occupied Territories, which details widespread Israeli human rights violations committed against Palestinian civilians, many of which involve the misuse of U.S.-supplied weapons."
     When one reads the 78-page report, the findings are less than discriminating and are not necessarily one-sided (an aspect of such a report that I would not necessarily expect from the State Department because of their usual bias against Israel). Throughout the report, while there are some instances of unnecessary abuse and violence from both sides, it appears that Hamas is much more to blame than Israel (note that none of the examples cited in the report are sourced which makes them difficult to trace, let alone verify for accuracy).
     So the demonization of Israel continues at the hand of several Christian denominations in America. What seems to also continue is the chronic tunnel vision that these denominations suffer from when it comes to human rights violation.

     Where is the outrage from the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) against our current administration for funding Egyptian leader Mohammed Morsi's government? A promise of $450 million was recently made to Egypt as part of a larger multi-billion gift aimed at Egyptian debt relief.  After the Cairo embassy fiasco of last month when the Muslim Brotherhood clearly stated their goals and displayed their hatred of Israel and the West, I find this hypocritical and potentially lethal.

    Where is the outrage from the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) against our current administration for appointing anti-American and anti-semitic Islamist Salam Al-Marayati as an overseas spokesperson on human rights? The man sees Israel's creation as a crime that he vows to overturn and he wants to blame Israel for 9/11, and he is the best candidate that our current President could find? Do I smell an agenda here? Actually, I think that what I am smelling is the fowl odor of propaganda, an odor that my Jewish people have yet to forget 70 years after the Nazi regime took over Germany and invaded Europe. This is nothing but appeasement, which is compromise and it will most assuredly lead to our demise as a free world.

     If human rights violations were really the agenda driving the PC (U.S.A), they would be very vocal on these two issues. But I fear that the real motive behind this "Christian revolt" has to be found elsewhere.
     But Israel could also be given "carte blanche" to do whatever they wish simply because true Christian supporters of God's chosen people can easily be blinded by their "biblical Zionism" commitment. They can become overzealous and possibly biased in favor of Israel. This imbalance can be unfair to both sides and caution should be used by those of us who support Israel and the Jewish people.
     This being said, anybody asking for Israel to cease receiving aid from the USA and as a result become a sitting target for Hamas, Hezbullah and the Muslim Brotherhood is simply ludicrous. We all know that much more than human rights are a concern here. Human life is really at stake!
     The day is fast approaching when the term Christian will be completely devoid of any biblical meaning. This is scary for those who will call themselves Christians yet will have no connection with Jesus Christ (Yeshua Ha Machiach) who said in Matthew 7:21-23:
Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many  miracles? And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’ 
     It is also very sad because the perception that my people have about Christians and Christianity is often based on such behaviors of hatred and disdain, and it makes my sharing the life saving message of Yeshua's Gospel with my people very difficult if not nearly impossible.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Day God Set His Own "Red Line"!

     There has been much talk recently about the need for the world community to set a red line in front of Iran's nuclear program. Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu's UN speech was infused with passion and the determination to clearly delineate how far Iran should be allowed to go with their uranium enrichment before they should be stopped. While there can be some disagreements on where the red line should be drawn, there is NO DOUBT that the need for such a line is a reality that cannot be ignored. Additionally, there is NO DOUBT in the mind of most western leaders that the goal of Iran's nuclear program IS weaponry. We must also keep in mind that the setting of a particular date doesn't preclude anyone (especially Israel) from a pre-emptive strike at any time prior to the deadline.
     Israel is on high alert as the whole region of the middle-East continues to be in extreme turmoil. Do we, westerners really grasp the gravity of this situation? While people around the world are camping out in long lines to get their hands on the latest iPhone 5, Israelis are lining-up to receive free gas masks for their families in anticipation of a conflict with Iran. Surreal? Maybe to us, but certainly not to Israelis!
     While it can be argued that Israel has one of the best armies in the world and while a unilateral strike against Iran is not impossible, now more than ever, Israel's true friends need to identify and align themselves with the Jewish nation. From that regards, it is my conviction that America is at a critical fork in the road. To be sure, we must realize that other countries have also turned their back on Israel, but the precedent set by the Obama administration is forcing America to cross God's red line!
     • Never has an American President been so vocal against Israel and its prime minister than President Obama. We all remember the exchange between President Obama and President Nicolas Sarkozy in November  2012, when they were inadvertently recorded, and Mr. Sarkozy said: "I cannot bear Netanyahu, he's a liar" to which President Obama responded: "You're fed up, but I have to deal with him everyday".
     • President Obama has not made any effort to officially visit Israel since in office. While he certainly isn't the only president who never visited the Holy Land during his term, he is the only one who has been very ambiguous at best regarding America's support. President Obama's extensive travel in the middle-east gives him no excuse to have never stopped in israel during his presidency. His absence will most certainly be received as a sign of apathy and/or lack of interest if not pure disdain.
     • No American President was ever too busy to turn down a meeting with an Israeli prime minister especially at a critical time such as the current Iran crisis. Yet, President Obama chose a fundraising event with entertainers Jay-Z and Beyonce and an appearance on the David Letterman Show instead of an emergency meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu.
     But in a more dangerous move than distancing himself from supporting Israel, President Obama is also increasingly aligning himself, his administration and by proxy, America with the enemies of Israel. As a result, America is soon going to be forced into crossing God's red line. The ramifications could be devastating.

     But what exactly is God's red line?
     For that, we must go back several millennia to the day when God first dialogued with Abraham (the father of the Jewish nation). Known as the Abrahamic Covenant, the foundational passage of Scripture first found in Genesis 12:1-3, sets the stage for what has become "God's foreign policy as it pertains to Israel". Blessings will abound for those who love and bless Israel and the Jewish people and curses will  fall upon the enemies of Israel. THIS IS God's red line NOT TO BE CROSSED, and it is that simple!
     I have always believed that America's prosperity and abundance was linked to her treatment of Israel and the Jewish people. America's financial decline as the world's number one super power is undoubtedly linked to her moral and spiritual declines (including disregard for Israel). The increasingly obvious disdain for Israel displayed by the current administration is pushing America into crossing God's red line from blessing Israel to cursing Israel. No nation has ever gotten away with it since the days of Abraham, why should America be exempt? America doesn't need to be mentioned in the Bible – and it is not –to be in the God's crosshair for revenge against the enemies of the "apple of His eye" (Zechariah 2:8).
     Sanctions and boycotts against Iran or any other enemies of Israel will never work because as crippling as they might be economically, they will just slow down the process but not eradicate the danger, since these enemies are ideologically but not economically driven. Being on Israel's side is being on God's side. What is so complicated about that?
     So, as one who trusts the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob with all my heart, I fear for America, if we indeed cross God's red line. While not every American will personally make that move, our country as a whole might never recover if President Obama pushes us over.
     Red lines have been and will continue to be set over the course of history.
     Red lines have been ignored repeatedly over time for reasons like tolerance or political correctness among others.
   God's red line is the one we need to take seriously because political correctness never was part of God's agenda.

     May God have mercy on America!