Robert Sauvé, my Ottawa friend and author wrote to me concerning the Lebanese Ambassador to Canada’s remarks concerning Canada’s Jewish Community. It started me thinking.
It was interesting to read Israel Asper’s comments in today’s issue of the National Post (1/11/03), vis a vis the Lebanese Ambassador’s claim that media ownership in Canada is 90% controlled by the Jewish community.
Asper didn’t realize that he was so powerful. It must also have been quite a shock to the other media players within Canada.
After-all; Jews certainly do not own Corus, Rogers, CHUM, Standard, NewCap, Pattison, TVA, TQS, CBC, CTV, Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, Maclean Publishing, Journal de Montreal, La Presse and Claude Neon; to name but a few.
But, as Robert Sauvé said to me in his letter: even if Jews did own 90% of the media, so what? That doesn’t mean that others are restricted from owning any part of the action. It would only mean that Jews were that much more determined than others to be the bigger or biggest players.
It’s not just the Arabs who make this claim. There are no shortage of mainstream Canadians (and others within the western democracies) who share this belief. And that is both a pity and a source for worry.
After democracy began to emerge in Poland, not that many years ago, when Lech Walesa burst onto the scene, and freedom of expression and speech became acceptable, many Poles who railed against their failed economy, blamed the Jews.
There are about 8,000 Jews living in Poland. This is from a pre WWII Jewish population of some 3.3 MILLION, of which only 300,000 survived the Holocaust. And of the 300,000 survivors, only 8,000, mostly old and poor themselves, still live in Poland.
Yet; this did not stop a great many Poles from blaming the Jews (8,000) for a failed economy and hard times. Habits, hatreds and scapegoats die hard.
Misperception is a deadly tool. Even though the truth screams otherwise to the claim, the claim is usually more than enough to carry the people who WANT to believe in the perception.
Therefore; if you hate Jews enough, all you need is someone to make a claim which offers sufficient approbation to assuage the dishonest beliefs, no matter how wrong the claim may be.
It is interesting that most of the people who have the greatest hatred towards Jews, are people who have never met a Jew.
In Nazi Germany, according to the book “Hitler’s Willing Executioners”, most Germans never had anything more than the most casual contact with anyone from the Jewish community.
Yet, these people willingly and happily accepted the claims made against Jews from whatever source.
Even though the “Jewish Blood Libels” espoused by most Arabs are as ridiculous a claim as one can imagine, there are no shortage of people who believe that Jews suck out the blood of non Jewish children with which we make our Passover matzos. They believe it, simply because they want to.
The Czarist forgery known as the Protocols Of The Learned Elders of Zion (1897), state that there is a global Jewish conspiracy to take over the world. Although proven to be a vicious fraud, the Protocols still carry enormous weight amongst people who want to believe in these lies. Belief in the Protocols, gives approbation to perpetuate personal hatred towards Jews.
Approbation for one’s belief is extremely important. It is not enough to say that I hate Jews: simply because they’re Jews. There has to be a reason. Therefore; like any port in a storm, many reasons (claims) are accepted out of hand, solely because they offer approbation.
When a claim is made that Jews own 90% of Canada’s media, regardless of how ridiculous it is, it is nonetheless taken as gospel by people who want to believe it to be true, and for the approbation that will justify their hatred towards an identifiable group. In this case, Canadian Jews.
It is also interesting how the success of the international Jewish Community has also become their greatest liability.
Because so many Jews have become extremely successful in so many disciplines, such as: education, science, healthcare, industry, banking, law, the arts, the media and politics; it is assumed by anti-Semites that there has to be a Jewish conspiracy. Not that Jews might work harder and smarter. But for so many Jews to be successful, there must be some sort of a cabal.
It is this thinking that carried the Germans to participate in the greatest crime against humanity. German Jews were incredibly successful in many walks of German life, including business. Therefore; in the minds of most Christian Germans, the Jews were usurping the German public, and as much, they were taking away from REAL Germans.
Nazi Propaganda Minister, Joseph Goebbels understood the value of THE BIG LIE. Make the lie big enough. State it over and over again from a voice of authority, and it rapidly becomes the truth.
Part of the Nazi propaganda had it both ways.
The Jews were accused of being Communists. And as Communists they were working to destroy the German economy. The Jews were accused of being usurious capitalists. And as usurious capitalists they were destroying the German economy.
Both beliefs were accepted, even though they were diametrically opposing social and economic philosophies. Capitalism is anathema to Communism. But that made no difference. People believed what they wanted to believe. And Goebbels gave them multiple choices.
The Nazis gave the German people who wanted to hate Jews, the approbation they needed to prove that their anti-Semitism was justifiable.
It doesn’t take much to light the fire of anti-Semitism, or to fan that fire to the degree that it burns totally out of control. And that is what happens when ridiculous claims, such as the Canadian Jewish media ownership claim is left unchallenged.
And even then, people who want to believe that Jews are what they want to believe them to be, will not be convinced otherwise, simply because a horrible claim was challenged. Too often, people want to believe the lie.
If the government of Canada is to make a positive point out of the remarks uttered by the Lebanese Ambassador to Canada, who made this outlandish claim, the government of Canada would revoke his diplomatic papers and send him on his way.
This action would do far more to argue against his Jewish media claim, than all the articles and letters which can be published in all of Canada’s mainstream and Internet news and opinion outlets. This would send as clear a signal as one can, that there is no approbation for racist claims.
It should also be understood, that even though I am writing in terms of anti-Semitism, the principle of hatred towards Jews, has no limits or bounds. Racists use the same tactics against whomever they target. Therefore; everyone has an interest in seeing that there is no room in our society for approbation of racist lies.