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Salient: Victoria University Students' Newspaper. Vol. 24, No. 11. 1961

In Reply to the Above—Daniels

In Reply to the Above—Daniels

The capture and trial of Adolf Eichmann has prompted many people to write in defence and protest of Israel's legal entitlement in this question. Now, Salient, for the first time, has taken sides with the issue and forwarded an extremely sarcastic, illogical, nonsensical article purporting to "straighten out matters" as far as the "Jewish question" is concerned. I say this rather peremptorily here, for Mr Daniels leaves me no other conclusion to draw: his presentation of the whole proceedings is so flippant and the tripe and stupidities stated therein so obviously false, I can only conclude he is no rational examiner, rather a racist of the extreme calibre.

He has stated Adolf Eichmann once, using this as a lead-in to the issue: "if the Jews had behaved better in the Weimar and Nazi states, treatment of them would have correspondingly been better." He may have a good case here; it would however be a case needing level-headed research and intelligence to discover anything. By the inanities and haphazard assortment of "facts" thrown around, Mr Daniels creates the impression once, of examining the economic structure of late Germany, or again, of accusing the "Jewish people" of "Nazi crimes," or again, of relating the two and extracting an illogical conclusion. Just what is he trying to do? But this Is perhaps begging the question; for Mr Daniels has achieved nothing, except to name himself an ignorant person in the eyes of all who read the above.

I Should Like to Briefly Examine Certain Statements Appearing in the Above Article.

1. Two popular terms bantered around with by Mr Daniels appear to be "race" and "Jews", both unfortunately for him. quite meaningless and unscientific in derivation. "Race" is a useless concept. As an anthropological and sociological term it is now discarded in favour of more rigorous, more definitive sub-groupings. Politically and morally it is still quite useful—the racist makes "good" work of the term in postulating macabre racial formulae and purities, as witness the commendable efforts of the writer above.

The concept of "Jew" is also extremely hazy in definition. To give a set of fixed characteristics to the "Jew" is misleading; whether the characteristics embodied are physical, national or religious. There can be no definition in this question, only relative demarcations: and relativity is not good enough in such a serious matter as this.

2. Where Is the evaluation and qualification of the many proffered, outlandish statements? Statements such as: "their own people have cheapened the cause for which they died by sensationalising it." What "cause" did these people die for? Did six million persons suffer in concentration camps because they would not abjure a faith; or were they there (some of them) because of their faith and would have remained there

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had all the abjuration of ages past been carried out? What, Mr Daniels?

Other statements appearing without any modicum of reference are: "the Jewish backers of the film . . . will make money out of it"; "hereditary flair for finance"; "At this time it was not the Aryans who exercised racial discrimination"; 'the perversion which has always been a major German failing"; "sharp dealing, dishonest manipulation of figures under company law . . . The names of Jews were too often associated with such practice", etc. etc.

The reader may care to find these remarks in the original context. What I would like to know is: where is the proof backing these statements? They are all so absurd and fallacious. For instance, "It was the Jews with their international affiliations and their hereditary flair for finance who were best able to seize such opportunities." Does Mr Daniels imagine there is a special "financial flair gene" transmittable by heredity processes? Why, sir, it's almost funny.

Or again: "At this time (1935ish) It was not the Aryans who exercised racial discrimination." I quote from the Law for the Protection of German Blood and German Honour of September 15, 1935:

"Section 1. Marriages between Jews and nationals of German or kindred blood are forbidden."

And from the First Regulation to the Reichs Citizenship Law of November 14, 1935:

"1. A Jew cannot be a citizen of the Reich. He has no right to vote in political affairs, he cannot occupy a public office."

If this was not "racial discrunination" practised by "Aryans" what was it, Mr Daniels?

3. Where, in the frame of things does such a statement as "And as the sun does not shine often on their race they made hay as fast as they could," fit in? There is neither subtlety nor insight in such a banal attempt at humour, as this is.

4. Where are the examples of "the films, plays and books of the time" said to be largely concerned with "the triumphs of financial crooks, criminals and prostitutes?" (What is the relevance of this to the article anyway)?

5. In the last sentence, Mr Daniels finally forwards a piece of direct opinion. It is certainly illustrative of the ignorance of the writer to say: "I think that if the Jewish community had controlled through their tighter knit organisation the activities of a large section of their sect Hitler would have been forced to use the Communists and the Soviet Union as scapegoats; and his path to political power would have been much more difficult if the Jewish community had not abused their trust." An ignorance of political history, sociology and Nazi philosophy. Could Mr Daniels supply Salient with the name of the book from which I believe all "his" facts and figures came? Finally sir, might I say I consider Mr Daniels such a lousy writer, I doubt if Alfred Rosenberg himself, would have employed him as proof-reader for tho Partei Sonntag Witzblatt.

Murray White.