Monday, April 01, 2013

Judenboykott

Eighty years ago today the Nazis enacted the boycott of Jews, calling on fellow Germans to defend themselves by not buying from Jews or in any way doing business with them.
“Germans! Defend yourselves! Don’t buy from Jews. The Jews bring us misfortune! Avoid Jewish doctors! Don’t go to Jewish solicitors!”
SA “brownshirts” – Nazi thugs – plastered these antisemitic signs on Jewish shops and businesses, doctors’ practices and lawyers’ offices, and then physically prevented people from entering.
Not that they really had to. Nobody really tried to stop the fuckers. They were allowed do their best. Some even encouraged them.
“We huddled forward through the crowd,” remembered Gerhard Durlacher. “Some frowned at us, others looked calmly, or distraught. But there were also some who were grinning, ready to enjoy the show.”
Only a small minority showed enough courage to defy the boycott.
Some Jewish doctors were rounded up from hospitals and taken off to concentration camps.
Apparently the churches did nothing either. Catholics, Protestants, Methodists – all their noble leaders, the good and mighty of the time, did absolutely nothing. The self-serving fuckbags didn’t even speak up against it.
For me the lack of action against it is just as shameful as the shameful action itself. We’re not talking about illiterate imbeciles here. If people didn’t know what was going on they should have made it their business to find out. Instead they closed their eyes, put their fingers in their ears and comforted themselves with their own ignorance.
Of course, we all know what happened next.

The picture above is kindly provided by the German Federal Archive. Georg Pahl took the photo on on April 1st, 1933.

4 comments:

  1. You may have noticed, being a good Catholic lad, that the Prayer for the Conversion of the Jews subtly snuck back into the Good Friday service in Germany. Antisemitism has been a cornerstone of many Christian churches, especially Roman Catholicism. That antisemitism moved many clergy to actively support sanctions (and worse) against Jews during the Nazi era. The first diplomatic treaty between the Nazis and anyone else was the Concordiat with the Vatican. Vatican apologists excuse this as realpolitik from the church; I suspect it was much more.

    You and I have discussedthis subject, I recall, in the shadow of the Berlin Wall, no less. I recommend Günter Levy's The Catholic Church and Nazi Germany. or Gabriel Wilensky's work, Six Million Crucifixions. http://www.librarything.com/work/9408677/reviews/58362580

    How much has the church changed, we must ask?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think we know the answer to that question.

      Thanks for the book recommendations and for preemptively broadening my knowledge on the subject.

      That talk was one of the highest-flying I've had in Berlin, with or without alcohol. And we only dared scratch the surface. I look forward to the next one.

      Delete
    2. Would it be gauche of me to ask if I may join in? I too, enjoy the exchange of ideas with The Honourable Hubs.

      Perhaps it could even happen at this year's WEBMU, where- and whenever that might be — if not sooner, of course.

      Delete
    3. Sorry, meant to reply but got sidetracked with distractions. Of course! It would be very ungauche of you to join in, wherever it may be. The last WEBMU was a hoot, indeed it's where the aforementioned discussion took place, so I very much look forward to the next one, even if the list of possible venues fill me with trepidation...

      Delete