California Arabic Newspaper Says Israel Abuses Memory of Holocaust » ADL Blogs
News & Analysis Focusing Primarily on Issues Affecting Israel
May 11, 2012 Off

California Arabic Newspaper Says Israel Abuses Memory of Holocaust

The April 27 issue of Watan, an Ana­heim, California-based Arabic-language news­pa­per, fea­tured an arti­cle accus­ing Israel of inten­tion­ally using the mem­ory and his­tory of the Holo­caust to mask Israeli crimes com­mit­ted against the Pales­tin­ian people.

The arti­cle, “The ‘Holo­caust’ Indus­try,” asks, “How could crimes against a group become a jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for that same group to com­mit crimes against another group?” Sim­i­larly, the arti­cle accuses “the Zion­ist entity” of com­mit­ting the heinous crimes against the Pales­tini­ans all “in the shad­ows of cel­e­brat­ing the mem­ory of the Holo­caust through the last century.”

The Watan arti­cle also pro­motes the con­spir­a­to­r­ial view that Israel’s pur­pose in pre­serv­ing the mem­ory of the Holo­caust is to be able to use it as a tool “against politi­cians, intel­lec­tu­als and oth­ers who dare to whis­per oppo­si­tion to Israeli poli­cies,” a charge that has fre­quently been used by anti-Israel schol­ars, activists and orga­ni­za­tions to stave off accu­sa­tions of anti-Semitism.

Watan, which claims to have a cir­cu­la­tion in Cal­i­for­nia of 30,000, con­sis­tently prints anti-Semitic edi­to­ri­als and car­toons. The car­toons, orig­i­nally pub­lished in the Arab press, have been inter­na­tion­ally syndicated.

Another California-based com­mu­nity news­pa­per, Al Akhbar, pub­lished an arti­cle in March fea­tur­ing anti-Semitic nar­ra­tives and com­par­isons of Israeli poli­cies to Nazi ideology.