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memri
March 16, 2000 No.
77

Anti-Semitism in the Egyptian Media; Part I: Holocaust Denial

Recent international events relating to the memory of the Holocaust, the election of Joerg Haider in Austria, and Israel’s reaction to Hizbullah’s activity in South Lebanon have significantly increased the anti-Semitic rhetoric in both the government and opposition Egyptian press.

Crematoriums Never Existed

In an article in the government daily Al-Gumhuriya, columnist Dr. Lutfi Nasef denies that crematoriums ever existed. He blames Zionism for cooperating with Nazism, and Israel for committing atrocities far greater than the Nazi crimes:

"Zionist propaganda continues, even today, to raise the issue of the Nazi crematoriums for Jews, although the historical evidence, revealed by renowned German, British, and French historians, proved that claims that such crematoriums existed in the Nazi detention camps are jokes... [They were] used by the Zionist movement for two purposes: first, to terrify the European countries during WWII so that the Jews would flee from Europe to Palestine, because the Zionist movement realized that the Jews ignored its call to immigrate to Palestine."

Zionists Helped the Nazis

"To achieve this goal, the Zionist movement cooperated with some Nazi leaders and especially the 'Hitlerist' SS in order to increase the terror against the Jews. This [phenomenon] reached the point where the Zionist movement cooperated with some Nazi military leaders in planning massacres against Jews in the detention camps. It is possible that the massacres in a detention camp in Budapest in which thousands of Jews were killed, proves the joint conspiracy planned by the Zionist movement [and the Nazis]."

"The Zionist movement learned that Jewish immigrants fleeing [Europe] were not heading to Palestine, but rather to America. Therefore, it planned a crime even worse than the Budapest massacre. It plotted to sink a ship crossing the [Atlantic] ocean on its way to the US carrying many Jewish immigrants... the purpose was to terrify the Jews so that they would fear crossing the ocean and chose a safer option -- traveling to Palestine..."

"There is no comparison between [all] the Nazi crimes and even one of the many massacres suffered by Arabs and Muslims throughout the world. We do not deal [here] with the history of Israeli massacres in Deir Yassin and other places. However, it suffices to mention recent history -- the Qana massacre and many other massacres continuing to this very day against the brave Lebanese people."

"The European countries talk these days about the Holocaust... But none of them think about the Iraqi people who are being annihilated through starvation, disease, and missiles by the US and its allies."[1]

Holocaust Numbers are a Myth

Columnist Muhammad 'Abd Al-'Azim writes in the government daily Al-Gumhuriya: "The purpose of Israel is to remind Europe and the US of the crematoriums in which, according to Israeli claims, six million Jews were killed. Yet, in their historical research, scholars emphasize that this figure is greatly exaggerated. …records published by Jewish organizations in the US mentioned that during Hitler's time, there were only three million Jews in Europe, as was determined by the great French intellectual, Rojer Garaudi. Israel's purpose in commemorating the Holocaust is to keep these countries under the weight of a guilt complex in order to continue to extort millions of dollars from them. This is, in addition to the political blackmail, especially of Germany, the US, Switzerland and other countries."[2]

From the government paper, Al-Ahram Weekly, February 17-23, 2000
From the government paper, Al-Ahram Weekly, February 17-23, 2000

Columnist Muhammad Al-Sammak of Al-Ahram, a government daily, also states that the Jewish "crematorium theory" was only meant to extort from Europe and "force on it, generation by generation, the complex of its uncommitted sins."

"The Treblinka camp may have been real, but the Al-Khiyam camp in South Lebanon is also real. It is possible that the Auschwitz camp witnessed a great massacre, but so did Qana in South Lebanon. Furthermore, all of Lebanon has become a constant scene for Israeli massacres… what is the difference, then, between Zionism and anti-Semitism?"[3]

Nazism Includes Clinton and Jospin

In the [Islamic] opposition "Labor party," daily Al-Sha'ab, columnist Dr. Hilmi Mahmoud Al-Qa'oud writes: "the Nazism of the Jews and the Nazism of the Crusaders" [meaning, the US and the West]:

"The Crusaders' Nazism does not see any fault in the deeds of Jewish Nazism. Rather, it gives ['Jewish Nazism'] support, because it created it and nurtured it as a base... in the land of the Muslims... The Nazism of the Crusaders is not represented by Hitler or Joerg Haider alone, but also by Clinton and Jospin -- they are all of the same dynasty and Jewish Nazism is no different from the Nazism of the Crusaders. Both believe in racism and the supremacy of the European race over other races." The columnist later proposes Jihad as "the ideal way to deter both kinds of Nazism, that of the Crusaders and that of the Jews."[4]

Israel is the Second Nazi State

Columnist Dr. Hassan Rajab writes in the government daily Al-Akhbar: "Israel is the second country, after Nazi Germany, that has a clear Nazi basis and carries out a policy of ethnic cleansing, from Deir Yassin to Sabra and Shatila. Israel is unique in its corrupt and base political and social system that discriminates between people based on their religion or ethnicity... Israel, with the help of the international Zionist octopus, forced its new democratic political thought on many European countries and legislated laws prohibiting free thought and scientific research about the legends that founded the Zionist state..."[5]

In the government weekly Akhbar Al-Youm, columnist Jalal 'Aref asks: "Is Nazism in Austria or in Israel?" and blames Israel for operating "by the same Nazi logic that they are above everyone else and they have a right to rob peoples, exploit their treasures, force their will on others, and scorn UN resolutions. Is it not what Israel has done since its inception as stateless gangs and until it became a state that thinks with the logic of gangs? The only difference [between Israel and the Nazis] is that the world fought Nazism until it collapsed, but now, the victims are required to give up."[6]

A Voice of Morality and Reason

A different perspective is that of journalist and intellectual Muhammad Sayyid Ahmad who, writing in the government Al-Ahram Weekly, views Haider, and not Israel, as the real neo-Nazi threat:

"The attempt to downplay the significance of and even to minimize the threat it represents is extremely dangerous and I personally believe that our stand should not be determined as necessarily the opposite of the stand taken by Israel..."

"The European peoples who bore the brunt of Nazi excesses throughout WWII have every right to worry about similarities between the ideological platform of Haider's Freedom party and that of Hitler's National Socialism. If the similarities are not obvious to the majority of Austrians, they certainly are to the majority of EU citizens of which Austria is a part... "

"For the Europeans, Haider's rise in Austria is chillingly similar to Hitler's rise in Germany in the early 30's and Mussolini's in Italy in the 20's. Like them, he is a populist hero who taps into his countrymen’s insecurities and xenophobia. Unabashedly anti-immigrant, he accuses immigrant workers of depriving Austrians of the jobs… and of lowering their standard of living because they are willing to accept inferior wages. He has been quoted as praising many of the policies of the Third Reich, and is an outspoken critic of the government's plans to compensate Austrian Jews for the persecution they suffered under Nazi rule... "

"We must not allow the evils that have accompanied the globalization process to drive us into committing the same mistakes we committed before WWII. Frustration with globalization should not lead us to espouse Nazism as an expression of protest against, and dissatisfaction with, a unipolar world order led by the US. Nor should Israel's opposition to the rise of Nazism in Austria be used as a pretext to stand on the side of Nazism wherever it emerges. Israel can fan the flames of the anti-Nazi campaign, but it is not because of Israel that the campaign erupted in the first place... "[7]

Anti-Semitism in the Egyptian Media; Part II: On the Escalation in Lebanon


[1] Al-Gumhuriya (Egypt), March 4, 2000.

[2] Al-Gumhuriya (Egypt), February 22, 2000.

[3] Al-Ahram (Egypt), February 16, 2000.

[4] Al-Sha’ab (Egypt), March 3, 2000.

[5] Al-Akhbar (Egypt), February 8, 2000.

[6] Akhbar Al-Youm (Egypt), February 12, 2000.

[7] Al-Ahram Weekly (Egypt), February 17, 2000.