The Crumbling Holocaust: an Israeli Perspective | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

The Crumbling Holocaust: an Israeli Perspective

Ilani’s view seems to integrate the Holocaust into the Greek’s ‘Classical Elements’ along side water, air and fire. Ilani elaborates on his position. “In Israel, the Holocaust is the first thing you have to know. If someone here knows anything at all about the past, it’s about the Holocaust. Not the discovery of America, not the moon landing, certainly not the French Revolution, not even the Revelation at Mount Sinai – first of all, the Holocaust. For a certain period, it was possible to think that it was the same outside Israel.”

Ilani is clearly younger than I. For my parents’ generation, my peers and myself, the Holocaust was a distant story: a Jewish diaspora tale, a tragic event that happened to other people: people whom we saw as categorically foreign. People who were led like lambs to the slaughter as we, 'the Israelis' were not. Clearly at a certain stage the Israeli attitude toward the Holocaust changed and this shift has yet to be completely understood.

Holocaust indoctrination has spread widely beyond Israel’s border, Ilani posits. “In America, as in many other parts of the world, children in recent decades have learned about the Holocaust from an early age. It’s basically perceived as the formative event of the modern era, against which the central political values of our age were shaped.” Sarcastically he adds, “suffice it to try to imagine how people reviled their political adversaries a century ago, when the words ‘Nazi’ or ‘fascist’ still had no meaning.”