DID ZIONISTS COLLABORATE WITH HITLER?
This is the second of two articles. The first article deals with the assertion that present day Israel behaves the same way towards Palestinians as Nazis did towards Jews. In that article I outline why the notion is absurd and the toxic reasons why Jew-haters make the claim. It can be found here.
The article you’re reading now addresses the claim that Hitler and Jewish Zionists collaborated back in the 1930s. Once again the notion is entirely mischievous. The goal is to depict Israel and Jews as unremittingly evil and to therefore legitimise violence against them. If Zionism and Nazism are fraternal brothers - and if Nazism is a crime against civilisation - then Zionism must similarly be extinguished.
It’s elementary to even say this, but sane and decent people should know intellectually and instinctively that Zionism is not Nazism: it is a response and solution to Nazism. The goals of Nazis and Zionists never overlapped - despite attempts to misrepresent scattered evidence in order to reach perverted conclusions. The “evidence” in question is the Haavara Agreement. This agreement was reached in 1933 between Nazi Germany and some Zionist German Jews. It allowed German Jews - living under Nazism - to sell their assets in Germany. A Jew could transfer their money to the Haavara Company. Haavara then had to use this money to purchase goods manufactured in Nazi Germany. These German-made goods would then be sold in the British Mandate in Palestine. Any German Jew who managed to escape Nazi Germany and reach this destination would then receive their proceeds from the sale of these goods. Approximately 60,000 German Jews who sold their possessions did manage to escape Nazi Germany through this scheme in the years 1933–1939.
Those who claim Hitler’s desire for Jews to leave Germany, and Zionists wanting Jews to escape Germany means they collaborated in pursuit of a shared goal, have made a monstrous assault on history. It is an hateful attack on the memory of one of the most unfortunate, unempowered groups of the 20th century: Jews trapped between a rock and the Holocaust. It removes all intention and motivation from the equation. It removes all context. It removes the power dynamics at play. It removes the entire truth of the relationship: that Jews in Nazi Germany weren’t equal citizens - they were hostages. Jews weren’t voluntarily walking to freedom. They were being made to walk the plank.
We could also add that the British Mandate in Palestine was just one of many places the Nazis wanted Jews to emigrate to. They simply wanted to get rid of their Jews and plunder all they could from them. Do we say Britain collaborated with the Nazis because they also took in German Jewish refugees? Do we say Britain is therefore equivalent to Nazi Germany and has no right to exist?
Of course we don’t. Because the accusation of Zionist-Nazi collaboration is a racist trick to incite hatred against Israel and Jews.
Let’s put it simply: Zionism wanted to save Jews - Nazism wanted to kill Jews.
The goal of Jews was to live freely with dignity.
Hitler's goal was to strip them of every freedom and dignity.
Jews wanted to thrive.
Hitler wanted to burn, gas, shoot and drown them.
As the pretty reasonable goal of being alive could not be met under Hitler, Jews sought emancipation through the liberation movement of Zionism and to join other Jews already living on the land to which their origins are indigenous.
To say Hitler supported Zionism is as stupid as saying Hitler supported Jewish pride by giving them yellow stars to wear…
…or that he helped create more leisure time for Jews by passing laws closing their shops….
…or that he made Jewish neighbourhoods safer by building walls round them and placing soldiers with machine guns outside…
…or that Kristallnacht was an attempt by Hitler to provide air conditioning to Jewish shops on those famously warm German winter evenings…
…or that he helped Jews with their feng shui by taking their possessions and allowing them to embrace minimalism…
…or that such a big fan of the Jewish mother-in-law joke was Hitler that he passed a law forbidding Jews to marry any non-Jews in order to preserve his favourite comedy…
…or that he wanted life to be one big spring break for Jews so barred them from attending universities…
…or that he loved Jews so much that he funded a German expedition to try and find them across the whole of Europe and carried on doing so in spite of the best efforts of Britain, America and the allied nations to stop him…
Zionism wanted to save Jews - Nazism wanted to kill Jews.
I guess this is too subtle a difference for those so blinded by dogmatic opposition to Israel and Jewish self-determination that they’re prepared to rewrite the history of a minority whose backs were against the wall in a way we should shudder to imagine.
Zionism was, and is, the emancipation movement of the Jewish People. Those who oppose it are the ones who actually have a closer kinship with Nazis in their desire to strip Jews of a right they happily bestow upon others. Seeing as we do live in a world where intentions towards Jews can often seem indistinguishable from those held by Nazi Germany - thank G-d for Zionism.
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