Crime and punishment

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By SAMUEL KILSZTAJN*

Europeans today are philo-Semitic-Jews and anti-Semitic-Muslims. By the way, for Europeans, Muslims really are the new cancer of humanity

I had the opportunity to read Crime and punishment while I was on a penal vacation, at the age of 20, for having dared to oppose the indecent, illegal and terrorist military dictatorship in Brazil during the so-called years of lead – a very appropriate place and age for reading this dense volume of international classic literature. These were the years of the Cold War, and democratic Western countries saw fit to foster military and bloodthirsty dictatorships in Latin American countries to prevent them from migrating to the Soviet bloc.

But Fyodor Dostoievsky is not exactly my favorite author, my favorite author has always been Leo Tolstoy, outraged by the use of the guillotine in the 1857th century, by the country that exported the mottos freedom, equality and fraternity and that values ​​it like no other country Western culture, beauty and quality of life. In 15, Leo Tolstoy witnessed Français Richeux's head roll in front of XNUMX Parisians.

Leo Tolstoy had already experienced the horrors of war in the Caucasus and Crimea, but he was unable to recover from the trauma of seeing, in the country of René Descartes, the head being separated from the body of a man by an ingenious and elegant machine, severed in a coolly, calmly and instantly. From this experience, Leo Tolstoy began to consider that every State was a conspiracy with the aim of corrupting its citizens and decided that he would no longer serve any government, at any time and place.

With the Industrial Revolution, Europeans, who had already “discovered” the Americas and promoted the compulsory immigration of Africans, became the masters of the world. To support their right to possession of the globe, Europeans developed theories about human races that justified their superiority in relation to the other inhabitants of the planet, including, among these, the irreverent and unwanted Jews.

For Christian Europeans, upstart Jews were the cancer of Europe, and although they represented a small minority, they meddled in every area of ​​human manifestation, from science, music, and finance to budding socialist movements.

At the end of the 19th century, with reference to the pogroms in the Russian Empire and the Dreyfus Affair in France, Theodor Herzl founded modern political Zionism, because he believed that anti-Semitism was rooted in the culture of Christian Europeans, who hated Jews so much for their defects as well as his qualities (and here, by the way, Theodor Herzl's prognosis was premonitory).

Racism and anti-Semitism gained scientific status and became fashionable. In the United States, Europeans exterminated indigenous people and subjugated black people; Argentina, after decimating the natives, got rid of its former black slaves in the Paraguayan War; Brazil exterminated the indigenous people, promoted the compulsory immigration of Africans and then, to improve the race, whiten it, it barred the immigration of blacks and Jews; Australia liquidated the aborigines and prevented immigration from Asian neighbors, etc.

What the Europeans did not imagine was that the Germans, who strive for efficiency, would take anti-Semitism to its ultimate consequences, installing factories for the mass extermination of undesirable Jewish subhumans.

When World War II ended, racist theories were discredited, abandoned, and became out of fashion. And Christian Europe felt guilty for the mass extermination of European Jews. The Nuremberg trials, incriminating Nazi atrocities, gained vast international coverage. Primo Levi received letters from Germans who stated that they had never known anything about discrimination against Jews; French collaborationists began to declare themselves philo-Semites; and the Austrians and Poles held the Germans responsible for all their anti-Semitic outings.

However, quotas for the absorption of Eastern European Jews who survived the Holocaust remained limited in the vast majority of countries. For the United Nations, it was preferable to approve the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine with an Arab-Muslim majority than to absorb the surviving Jews. Juden raus! Auf nach Palastina! 

The Soviet Union welcomed the creation of a Jewish state in the Middle East dominated by England and France; and Western countries turned a blind eye to the expulsion of Arabs from Palestine in order to create a Jewish-majority state in the region. A romanticized version of the atrocities committed by the Israelis was fabricated to cover up the expulsion of the Palestinians from their homeland, transforming it into a Jewish heroic epic.

In 1960, Exodus by Leon Uris hit cinema screens, in a Hollywood super production starring Paul Newman. The Jews who had walked like sheep to the European Christian slaughterhouse were transformed into militarized, virile heroes in the face of the defenseless Palestinian population, in the form of a second, ultimately victorious, chapter of the suicidal Warsaw Ghetto uprising, with the target changed.

Isaac Deutscher wrote that the natural population of Palestine was punished and had to pay for the crimes committed by Christian Europe in Auschwitz. Theodor Herzl, at the end of the 19th century, had already declared that, for Europe, the Jews in Palestine would constitute an outpost of civilization against barbarism. With the creation of the State of Israel, the time of the Jews, who until then lived in harmony with Muslims, ended in the countries of the Middle East and North Africa.

The feeling of guilt over the extermination of the Jews, however, did not stop European countries from continuing to subjugate their overseas colonies. France, while lamenting the fate of French Jews during World War II, patriotically endeavored to maintain its colonies in Southeast Asia and North Africa. In 1957, one hundred years after beheading Français Richeux, France put Fernand Iveton to the guillotine for an unconsummated attempt in favor of the liberation of Algeria (the guillotine continued to be used in France until 1977).

The emancipation movements of the Portuguese colonies in Africa did the favor of freeing the Portuguese from the dictatorship and backwardness of life to which Salazar subjected Portugal. The current conflicts in Africa and the Middle East and the influx of refugees are the result of the arbitrary division of these regions promoted by Europe, which is now being asked to pay its bill.

Although there continue to be anti-Semitic Europeans, most European populations and governments have come to value the contributions of Jews to science and the arts. Jews are now considered exemplary European citizens. The guilt they feel about the fate of the Jews during the Holocaust makes Europeans feel empathy for the Jews and forgive any shortcomings in their behavior.

For Europeans, Jews can now do anything because they were previously considered outcasts and victimized. Jews are allowed everything, including expelling Palestinians from their homeland (which even saves Europeans from having to put up with a greater number of upstart Jews in their midst). In most European countries, Palestinians cannot even express their indignation at the ongoing massacre, any pro-Palestinian demonstration has been criminalized as anti-Semitic.

Europeans today are philo-Semitic-Jews and anti-Semitic-Muslims. In fact, for Europeans, Muslims really are the new cancer of humanity and one can even forgive the Israeli army for setting fire to the Palestinians, may they burn in hell. The Israelis are really doing the Europeans a great favor, they are competently playing the role of an outpost of civilization against barbarism.

*Samuel Kilsztajn is a full professor of political economy at PUC-SP. Author, among other books, of Shulem. [https://amzn.to/44SsSjE]


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