Gilad Atzmon rebuts Elias Davidsson’s Hasbara rant
For the last several years I have repeatedly pointed out that when it comes to Palestine, the discourse of the oppressed is shaped by the sensitivities of the oppressor. No one demonstrates this thought process better than German Jewish activist Elias Davidsson. The tribal operator ended his slanderous article about me in the German New Left Rubikon magazine: “As a longtime anti-Zionist, I will not allow our fight for a just peace in Palestine to be disintegrated by psychopathic anti-Semites, nor will I regard people as comrades spreading the horrible theories of a Jewish world conspiracy. This theory has already resulted in millions of bodies.”
Ask yourself who comprises ‘our’ what ‘fight’ he is referring to. Indeed, I have never accused the Jews of a conspiracy. I argue, as forcefully as I can, that there are NO Jewish conspiracies. Self–identified Jews don’t hide a thing, they act in the open. Jewish Power, accordingly, is the power to silence criticism of Jewish power. This is exactly what Davidsson is attempting to do. And so he implements the Hasbara guidebook.
Elias Davidsson is an elder wannabe musician. I suppose that in the last few years he has been unable to restrain his envy. His vicious attacks on yours truly have provided him his moment of fame in his waning years.
Until 2011 Davidsson regularly begged me to publish his unreadable rants. They were never up to standard and I rejected most of them. In 2011 I did publish a piece by Elias Davidsson in which the boy declared himself a “radical anti-Semite.’
A few months later, my book The Wandering Who? was published. The book was a world wide best-seller. Apparently Davidsson couldn’t take it. Although the book was endorsed by some of the greatest humanists and scholars, Davidsson declared the book a ‘neo-nazi text.’ Why? Because, like Hitler, I referred to a ‘Jewish organismus.’ If the tribal had just a few extra grey cells in his skull he would have comprehended that Hitler’s organismus was set to incriminate the Jews as a collective while my use of the term Jewish organismus was as a possible vindication of the Jews as a collective. Here are my words, “it is of course possible that there is no decision-making process at all. It is more than likely that ‘Jews’ do not have a centre or headquarters. It is more than likely that they aren’t aware of their particular role within the entire system, the way an organ is not aware of its role within the complexity of the organism.” (The Wandering Who pg. 21) Basically, the concept is that the finger that pulls the trigger is not necessarily responsible for the dead body in the room.
I thought at the time that Davidsson was uniquely duplicitous, agonized with envy or just too stupid for my time. I ignored him.
I didn’t hear from Davidsson for a few years, but last week he has popped out again. In his Rubikon piece Davisson performs every Hasbara spin technique from duplicity to outright fabrication.
“Atzmon is primarily concerned with the freedom to question the Holocaust, not the general right to freedom of expression,” says the son of David. Is this true? Have I ever excluded any other intellectual domain? A week ago, at the Babylon theatre in Berlin, I spoke out against all history laws. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=48&v=-0YOJKGuNzQ
I specifically mentioned the Nakba Law and the Armenian Genocide law. However, it is the primacy of Jewish suffering embedded in the core of the Holocaust religion and the laws surrounding it that bothers me the most.
Davidsson continues: “Atzmon is not on the side of the victims, but just trying to play down the crime.” Is this true? Is stripping the holocaust of its religious status and treating it as a universal lesson in ethics equal to ‘playing down the crime’? Quite the opposite. It changes the narrative from that of a Jewish/German anecdote into a vivid dynamic and universal lesson that can be applied to Palestine, Syria and Iraq.
And then we are referred yet again to that same snippet of revisionist advocacy from The Wandering Who? Davidsson calls this paragraph “classic Holocaust Denial.”
“I think that 65 years after the liberation of Auschwitz, we must be entitled to start asking questions. We should ask for historical evidence and arguments rather than follow a religious narrative that is sustained by political pressure and laws. We should strip the Holocaust of its Judeo-centric exceptional status and treat it as an historical chapter that belongs to a certain time and place. The Holocaust, like every other historical narrative, must be analysed properly. 65 years after the liberation of Auschwitz we should be able to ask – why? Why were the Jews hated?” (The Wandering Who p 175)
In the eyes of the deranged Davidsson a call for ‘disclosure’ and openness about the past that moves beyond Jewish victimhood shows a ‘neo Nazi’ inclination. Of course, it doesn’t. Worse, the duplicitous Davidsson cut my paragraph in the middle.
Here is the rest of the text which he chose to omit:
“65 years after the liberation of Auschwitz we should be able to ask – why? Why were the Jews hated? Why did European people stand up against their neighbours? Why are the Jews hated in the Middle East, surely they had a chance to open a new page in their troubled history? If they genuinely planned to do so, as the early Zionists claimed, why did they fail? Why did America tighten its immigration laws amid the growing danger to European Jews? We should also ask what purpose Holocaust denial laws serve? What is the Holocaust religion there to conceal? As long as we fail to ask questions, we will be subjected to Zionist lobbies and their plots. We will continue killing in the name of Jewish suffering. We will maintain our complicity in Western imperialist crimes”
It is clear why Davidsson omitted the rest of the paragraph. It is about him and his tribal agenda. “As long as we fail to ask questions…We will continue killing in the name of Jewish suffering.” Elias Davidsson attacks me and falsifies my words because he wants to sustain the primacy of Jewish suffering.
According to this miserable man I am motivated by “personal and pathological hatred of ‘Jews’, including Jewish activists who act for Palestinians rights,[ …] therefore, he (Atzmon) describes himself. as a ‘self-hating Jew.’
When scholars refer to a pathology they point at forensic evidence that substantiates their verdict. Davidsson fails to offer any evidence of my ‘pathology.’ I will help the elder Zionist to refine his argument. The fact that I occasionally define myself as “a self hater” suggests that I hate myself rather than others. Consistent with Otto Weininger’s brutal realisation that in art, understanding of the self is understanding of the world, I dig into myself as an act of disclosure.
Like his friend Ludwig Watzal who was caught plagiarising quotes originally fabricated by Dershowitz, Davidsson is misquoting me and even put words in my mouth in a deliberate attempt to deceive. Davidson builds his entire zigzag narrative on a nine year old discussion on American TV. “Asked if any Jews had died by the Nazis, Atzmon says: ‘that is a completely irrelevant question.. Because I'm not a historian,’”
What I actually say in the video is that my concern with the holocaust is not about numbers, “even if it were, 2.5 million it is quite enough”
…we are talking about huge numbers here. In my work, I want to move beyond numbers and to grasp why, what is it in the Jews that makes Jewish history a chain of disasters? Why is antisemitsm rising again? And the crucial question is why Elias Davisson, supposedly, a ‘truth seeker’ is so fearful of me asking these questions? Why does Davidsson feel the need to lie and to omit certain lines? What kind of people engage in such duplicitous behaviour? The answer is simple. The fear of truthfulness is a Jerusalemite symptom. Jerusalem replaces reason with a strict regime of correctness.
Then the ignoramus argues that "ethnic cleansing" of Jews from Nazi Germany is “Atzmon's invention.” ”On the contrary,” Davidsson says, “German Jews had to apply for emigration in the Third Reich. Not all could emigrate.”
Maybe the German speaking Davidsson should explain to us what the notions judenrein and judenfrei meant to the Nazi regime. One may well wonder how this nonsense passed the Rubikon’s editorial standards. David Cesarani’s Final Solution provides an incredible account of the Nazi’s ethnic cleansing of German and Austrian Jews. You would expect Davidsson to grasp that ‘applying for immigration’ was a bureaucratic procedure. And this is exactly why we need history to be subject to revision.
The notion of ethnic cleansing wasn’t around when Raul Hilberg wrote ‘The Destruction of European Jews,’ the only source Davidsson cites. It wasn’t until Kosovo in the late 1990s that the term ‘ethnic cleansing’ made it into our vocabulary. It was in the late 1990s and early 2000s that the new notion of ethnic cleansing helped us to re-shape our understanding of the Nakba in 1948 and of Nazi atrocities. I guess it is too much to expect Davidsson and the Rubikon editorial to grasp this nuanced intellectual evolutionary process.
In his attempt to discuss the death march, Davidsson is again out of his depth and quoting Raul Hilberg isn’t very helpful. Here is the death march dilemma as I see it: if the Nazis wanted the Jews out of their Reich or dead, why did they march thousands of them back to the Reich at the end of the war?
This is an historical dilemma that is begging for an answer, it juxtaposes two conflicting historical narratives. I accept that silencing me is the preferred solution for the Jerusalemite, but if I may advise the elder Davidsson, it won’t remove the dilemma. At best it will only delay the discussion.
And finally the unthinkable happens, Davidsson manages to depart from the Holocaust. He lands on ‘Christ killing.’ “Atzmon said that the Israeli attack on the Gaza humanitarian flotilla ‘was [ideologically] a repetition of the killing of Jesus Christ.’” According to Davidsson this is a “propagandist” attempt to “curry favour with Christian anti-Semites.” I will help the spin merchant to grasp some elementary basics. Christ killing is a symbol of the murder of innocence and goodness. In my eyes, and I am hardly alone in this thought, a lot of Israeli brutality falls into this category. The crude attack on the Mavi Marmara was a prototypical case of an assault on goodness. Unlike Davidsson, I operate on my own. I am not affiliated with anyone, whether Christian, Socialist or Nazi. I am searching for that which unite us as humans. I am searching for the conditions that make humanism a possibility. I am committed to one thing; that which I believe to be true at the time I utter it. I do accept that for Davidsson and his ilk such an approach is a fatal threat. I wish I knew how to help them out.