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March 07, 2007

Plus ça change....

In 1980, French Prime Minister Raymond Barre inadvertently illustrated the French attitude toward the Jews:

In October 1980, terrorists exploded a bomb outside the synagogue in the rue Copernic in Paris, killing six people, including gentile passersby. Centrist Prime Minister Raymond Barre rushed to condemn the ‘odious act,’ but he added that it was an act ‘which intended to strike Jews going to synagogue and which struck innocent Frenchmen crossing the rue Copernic.’
Although the writer quoted here by Jay Nordlinger quickly added that Barre was no anti-semite, one can't read that line without seeing how starkly it distinguishes between the Jews who were the targets of the terrorist act and the "innocent Frenchmen" who were accidently caught up in it as victims.

I wonder, though, whether the writer had taken the proper measure of the former Prime Minister. Monsieur Barre is back in the news after attacking the "Jewish Lobby" for making a scapegoat of a Vichy-era official responsible for deporting French Jews to Nazi camps.
Former French Prime Minister Raymon Barre has sparked an uproar within the Jewish community after accusing “the Jewish lobby” of making “a scapegoat” of Maurice Papon, a French senior official who signed deportation orders for hundreds of Jews in the Bordeaux region during WWII.
(via The Corner, via Instapundit) I would say more about this, but it would just make me a part of the Jewish Lobby intent on scapegoating Barre.

So I'm going to turn to the Germans, who are doing their damnedest to engage in self-parody. Recently, a delegation of German bishops arrived in Israel, where they tried to be civil. As soon as they had gone to East Jerusalem and into the Palestinian territories, however, they really turned on the charm. (via LGF)
While crossing one of the checkpoints into East Jerusalem the Archbishop of Cologne, Cardinal Joachim Meisner, told reporters: "This is something that is done to animals, not people." Meisner, a resident of eastern Germany, said that the fence reminded him of the Berlin Wall and that in his lifetime he did not believe he would see such a thing again. As the Berlin Wall was brought down so will this wall be brought down, he said, adding that the fence served no purpose.
The fence does in fact serve no purpose, if saving Israeli lives is not a purpose. And here's another:
"Cages in the image of ghettos," said the Bishop of Augsburg of the territories.
Which is a different way of saying that the Jews are the real Nazis and the Palestinians the real Jews. And another:
"Israel has, of course, the right to exist, but this right cannot be realized in such a brutal manner," said Bishop Hanke....
Which is to say they're willing to concede, in theory, that the Jews have the right to exist as a nation, so long as they don't defend themselves against people who want to kill them.

Some of us say that the American Left thinks everything is Vietnam. With the Germans, it seems, everything is the Holocaust. And if they have their way, the Jews will be the victims once again.