Countering the Julius Streichers of our age

The Nuremberg Tribunal convicted Julius Streicher for “crimes against humanity.” He was later hanged to death. Interestingly, the prosecutors didn’t argue that Streicher killed anyone. He, in fact, didn’t commit any violent act personally. Above all, Streicher was not even a prominent official in the German government during the period when the Jews and others were persecuted and killed.

The sole offense for which Julius Streicher was ordered put to death was having served as publisher and editor of Der Sturmer in the early 1930s, years before the Nazi actually carried out the genocide. In this capacity, he was accused of penning a long series of virulently anti-Jewish editorials and “news” stories, usually accompanied by cartoons and other images graphically depicting Jews in extraordinarily derogatory fashion.

These write-ups, the prosecution asserted, had done much to “dehumanize” the Jews in the minds of the German public. In turn, such dehumanization had made it possible – or at least easier – for average Germans to later indulge in the outright liquidation of the Jews. The Tribunal agreed, holding that Streicher was therefore complicit in genocide and deserving of death by hanging.

Let us fast forward to 2005. We see two major types of Julius Streichers around: one, those who are trying to be politically correct and two, those who are so honest and sincere in their commitment to dehumanize Muslims that they don’t care about mincing words. The sum and substance of the work of these Julius Streichers is the same: discredit Islam and dehumanize Muslims.

Those who blame every terrorist act on Muslims within minutes of every attack, without even waiting for any investigation or inquiry, blame “poisonous interpretation” of Islam in their politically correct statements.

On the other hand, the overt Julius Streichers do not hesitate in saying in the pages of Washington Times (December 02, 2004): “It is time we admitted that we are not at war with “terrorism.” We are at war with Islam…we are absolutely at war with the vision of life that is prescribed to all Muslims in the Koran. The only reason Muslim fundamentalism is a threat to us is because the fundamentals of Islam are a threat to us. Every American should read the Koran and discover the relentlessness with which non-Muslims are vilified in its pages. The idea that Islam is a ‘peaceful religion hijacked by extremists’ is a dangerous fantasy –” and it is now a particularly dangerous fantasy for Muslims to indulge.”

For the politically correct Julius Streichers, more than 75 years is good enough time to consummate their skills at dehumanizing a people and discrediting their faith. They think they know how to win future Nuremberg trials. Despite their perfection, they are so naïve to take us all for fools, thinking that we would not understand their gradual shift to high gears from a “war on terrorism,” to “war within Islam,” and a “war of ideas” to the open threats of holding all Muslims guilty in case of any future terrorist attacks.

The New York Times editorial pages are an open invitation to the extremist elements, holding grudge against Muslims and Islam, to strike terror and let Muslims get blamed for it while the iron is red. Imagine New York Times (July 15, 2005), a sources considered most credible and authentic in the “mainstream media,” telling its readers that 1.2 billion Muslims are raised with the supremacist concept of God: “Muslims are raised with the view that Islam is God 3.0, Christianity is God 2.0, Judaism is God 1.0, and Hinduism is God 0.0.”

For more evidence of racial supremacy and promotion of the concept of treating Muslims as sub-humans can be seen in the New York Times op-ed piece by Paul Sperry, a Hoover Institution media fellow. His article is titled: “It’s the Age of Terror: What Would You Do?” Another article by Charles Krauthammer, “Give Grandma a Pass; Politically Correct Screening Won’t Catch Jihadists” in Washington Post also endorsed the practice of using ethnicity, national origin and religion as primary factors in deciding whom police should regard as possible terrorists. Such open promotion of racism is justified as racial profiling in this new age of fascism.

There is another article, “When You Have to Shoot First,” in the New York Times (July 28th). In this piece, Haim Watzman argues that the London police officer who chased down and put seven bullets into the head of a Brazilian electrician without asking him any questions or giving him any warning “did the right thing.”

Now imagine precariousness of the situation in an environment where the public is constantly subjected to the concept that Muslims have a supremacist concept of God and they deserve to be dehumanized. Imagine the impact of open threats to all Muslims in the same pages (NY Times, July 8, 2005) that all Muslims are suspect and they should mend their ways, otherwise “the West is going to do it for them. And the West will do it in a rough, crude way – by simply shutting them out, denying them visas and making every Muslim in its midst guilty until proven innocent.”

Is this any degree less for what Julius Streicher did in the early 30s keeping in view that the situation is already volatile and in little more than a week time after the London bombing there were already more than 1200 attacks on Muslims. Such xenophobic concepts and threats in the New York Times and other such “credible” sources are sufficient to further enrage the extremists who are already sending threatening e-mail messages to Muslims, calling them “towel head,” “raghead,” and “little pigs,” and directing them to “go back” to their “sands.”

The efficiency and ruthlessness with which ideological war is being waged against Islam is mind-boggling. Those involved in this campaign believe that the US-led direct and indirect occupations and the puppet Muslim regimes will only succeed in eliminating the “threat” of Muslims’ exercising their right to self-determination and securing self-rule for living by Islam by any means necessary, including torture and violence; and that helping eradicate any resistance to their totalitarian designs will occur by way of propaganda warfare similar to the efficient methods Goebbels employed during the Nazi era (which rallied the German people so surprisingly behind the concept of Aryan supremacy) and, more crudely, like the McCarthy era in the United States during the 1950s, when people were branded and persecuted without any due process or application of common sense.

Islam can certainly withstand such attacks; but if Muslims do not employ counter media and lobbying tactics, things are going to get far worse before they get any better. Whoever are carrying out the terrorist attacks are common enemies who certainly do not reside in the resources-less madrassas in Pakistan. Rounding hundreds of people in Pakistan after London Bombing, compared to not even a dozen in UK, is a clear example of a misdirected approach that only supports the propaganda of modern-day Julius Streichers.

Extending apologies and statements of denunciation simply confirm the pre-conceived conclusions that Muslims are guilty for these crimes. Instead of issuing fatwas for what is so-obviously transparent in the message of Islam anyway, the Muslims need to launch a vigor¬ous campaign against the media’s use of virulent qualifiers, and against directly and indirectly discrediting the Islamic concept of God (as in the case of New York Times), the Qur’an (as in the case of Washington Times) and the direct threats to all Muslims in the editorial pages of leading American dailies.

Silence due to fear of being blacklisted by Blair will only expedite the process for Muslims to face the same horror which the Jews faced at the hands of Nazis. Ignoring and denials will never stop their march towards Muslim holocaust. The silence of the majority of Muslims is far worse than the cooperation of a few Muslims in this war on Islam.

Responding to countless Streichers, bent on proving that Muslims are the enemies of civilization through their books and articles and cable views networks is an impossible task. Nevertheless, Muslims’ silence is criminal. If letter-writing and personal meetings do not bear fruit, both Muslims and non-Muslims must picket in front of the offices of these newspapers and media outlets to express their concerns over the impending and seemingly inevitable consequences of the work of the modern day Julius Streichers.