Genocide Abuse Day at the IHRC


Cross posted by Mark Gardner at the blog of the CST

With Holocaust Memorial Day (27th January) fast approaching, so does its annual bastardisation by our local pro-Iranian and pro-Hizbollah fans, the Islamic Human Rights Commission.

(See previous CST blog for IHRC’s role in London’s annual version of the Iranian-inspired anti-Israel hate festival, Quds Day, replete with Hizbollah assault rifle flags.)

Unlike the Iranian regime and its Press TV outlet, the Islamic Human Rights Commission is not so stupid or crass as to engage in outright denial that the Holocaust ever happened, but the group is still stuck between a rock and a hard place: how to acknowledge the reality of the Holocaust, without lending legitimacy to the most basic and blatant of arguments in favour of Zionism?

The far left have tackled this problem by keeping Jewish victimhood centre stage, whilst alleging that Zionists wanted the Holocaust and/or actually colluded with the Nazis to bring it about. They turn the moral tables on Zionism, by claiming that Zionists needed and desired and worked towards dead Jews in order to gain global sympathy for their enterprise.

The pro-Iranian IHRC, however, prefer the tactic of declaring a Genocide Memorial Day. This year it is subtitled  “Remembering Man’s Inhumanity to Man” and will be held on 20th January. The day’s title enables the IHRC to gently subsume the genocide of European Jewry under the sheer scale of man’s inhumanity to man. Challenge this as sophistry and you are forced into a somewhat nauseating comparative study in human suffering.

As a bonus ball, IHRC also get to define and blur the meanings of the word “genocide” and the phrase “man’s inhumanity to man”. So, they include Palestinian suffering and seamlessly move Palestinians and Israelis onto the same moral planes as Jews and Nazis.

In 2011, CST blog detailed that year’s IHRC Genocide Memorial Day calendar. For brevity, here are four of the entries:

January – Gaza: During the Israeli assault on Gaza during the 22 Day war (2008 – 09), 1,434 Palestinians were killed of which 288 were children and 181 were women. A further 5,303 Palestinians were injured in the assault, including 1,606 children and 828 women.

April – Auschwitz: Estimates of numbers of Roma and Sinti people killed by the Nazis in the second world war range from 200,000 to 500,000.

October – Treblinka: The Treblinka concentration camp was set up by the Nazis in Occupied Poland. Between July 1942 and October 1943, 800,000 people were killed there, the majority of whom were Jewish, and a substantial number of whom were Roma.

November – Palestine: The Nakba (The Catastrophe) refers to the events of 1948 when Israel was created. That year saw the mass deportation of a million Palestinians from their cities and villages, massacres of civilians, and the razing to the ground of hundreds of Palestinian villages.

Note how the Gaza and Palestine entries balance those of Treblinka and Auschwitz. Note how Treblinka mentions Jews and Roma, whilst Auschwitz mentions Roma and not Jews. Note how Treblinka seeks to play up the Roma element, despite the overwhelming majority of its victims having been Jewish. (I write this to show the IHRC’s underhand ghastliness, not to diminish the dreadful suffering of Roma and Sinti.) Note how there is no actual mention of the Holocaust, nor of gas chambers. The spin is both subtle and repugnant.

This year, to mark Genocide Memorial Week 2013, we have a cutesy little animation video on the IHRC website. (It can be viewed here, but does not need to be.)

The animation shows an adorable child holding a red balloon. The child’s ethnicity and religion gradually changes (including Jewish and Muslim). The child is simply drawn in a charming and naive style, walking along without a care in the world to the tune of a happy background jingle. At the foot of the animation runs a series of children’s names that begins with “Ann Frank (Germany)”. This is followed by “Renate Wolff (Germany)” and “Agnes Ringwald (Hungary)”, before listing one Kurd, two Guatemalans, two Japanese and two Australians, then ending with “Mu’tassim – Muhammad Ali Samour (Gaza)”.

The name “Ann Frank (Germany)” (sic) is, of course, very well-known. It immediately establishes for the viewer what the other names are all about. Unavoidably, your awareness is heightened that you do not actually recognise most, or perhaps any, of the other names scrolling along the screen. This causes you to pay greater attention to them. You cannot help asking yourself, ‘why don’t I know these other names and what tragedies have they suffered?’. (In actuality, not all of those listed were actually murdered in genocides and some of them are still alive. Again, this is to be forced into a comparative study of human suffering.)

The names change as the animated child also changes. As the words “Muhammad Ali Samour (Gaza)” appear, so the screen explodes blood-red and the music changes to gunfire. The words “Sabra & Shatilla” are now stamped on the blood-red background, with the figure 3,500. Next, there is “Srebrenica 8,000”, then “Nazi Holocaust 11,000,000”.

So this year, the IHRC did actually mention three Jewish child victims of the Holocaust by name and they did draw a sweet picture of a boy in a kippah. The Nazis’ six million Jewish victims are, however, conveniently subsumed within the larger figure of eleven million victims. Why commemorate the ethnocentric six million total, when you can commemorate the universalist eleven million total? (Whether this eleven million figure is even accurate is another, not unrelated, matter. See for example here.)

In all, 16 events and death tolls appear. Having begun with “Sabra & Shatilla 3,500″, the list ends with “Gaza 2009 over 1,000”. The opening and closing sections are the only ones that relate to Palestinians. It is their victimhood that literally brackets all of the other entries: this is subtle stuff, but it is highly effective and, as with the 2011 calendar, it moves Palestinian suffering centre stage and places it on an equal, or even higher plane, than that of Jewish suffering. The message is as subtle as it is unmistakable; and the IHRC’s motivations for Genocide Memorial Day are shown up for being not quite as universalist as they would have you believe.       

The Iranian regime (and indeed the far left) could learn a great deal from this sleight of hand. Will the IHRC advise them to follow suit?

Finally, it should be noted that when searching “Genocide Memorial Day” on Google,the top result is a Wikipedia entry saying that this is a national holiday in Armenia. Curiously neither this, nor any Armenian children, feature in the IHRC’s video.

8 comments on “Genocide Abuse Day at the IHRC

  1. They seem to have forgotten 60000 in Syria or does that not count because they themselves (the arabs) are killing their own and that doesn’t matter?

  2. I just entered the search term “Holocaust” at the IHRC website:
    The top hit included a reference to Nazis and the Holocaust. Well, at least something – I thought.
    But said link was disappointing to say the least:
    http://www.ihrc.org.uk/activities/alerts/10397-event-alert-genocide-memorial-day-2013-remembering-mans-inhumanity-to-man

    “This year our theme is cultural genocide and we will be covering a number of atrocities including the heart rending plight of the people of the Americas, Palestine, the suffering of the transatlantic slave trade, Romas in Bulgaria and accounts from the victims of the Nazi Holocaust.”

    Unbelievable.

    Look at said search results:
    http://www.ihrc.org.uk/component/search/?searchword=holocaust&ordering=&searchphrase=all

    They beggar belief.

    No. 3 hit:
    “Chair of IHRC, Massoud Shadjareh said, “Muslims are facing a torrent of Islamophobic racist abuse, the level of which was only witnessed towards the Jews of Europe before the Holocaust”

    Thanks but no thanks, IHRC.

  3. http://www.ihrc.org.uk/component/search/?searchword=holocaust&ordering=&searchphrase=all

    Pretzelberg, did you notice the distortions and lies on the side bar of you link?
    When looking at the “projects” on the right hand side list you will find the “Boycott Israeli Dates this Ramadan ”
    Whe clicking it you will find some seriously distorted ideas:

    “Child Labour

    The Israelis prefer to employ children – even issuing them official work permits, as they can climb trees faster, work for less and it’s easier to cheat and humiliate them. Out of desperate poverty Palestinian families are forced to take their children out of school and hand them over to the settlers to work for a pittance.”

    My sister is leaving in a kibbutz Emek Hayarden (Upper Jorden Valley by the kineret).
    They have large date plantations and are no where near the top of the west bank, so they could easily be affected even though they have nothing to do with the occupation, as is Beit Shean for example.

    Child labour is nothing Israelis employ.
    If anything the Palestinians and Bedouins are the ones likely to use children @ work.
    Ask yourself which kids spend their day in school and which ones spend their days throwing rocks at soldiers, or straying too close to the fence while shepherding their flock…

    • Yes indeed I did see that. Although the highly selective choice of material was sadly no surprise after said term search.

      Normally one might say “what a cheek” – except the dimensions of this go some way beyond mere chutzpah, if I’m not mistaken.

  4. Okay, now that I have rinsed my mouth after puking violently in the loo, I can say what do we expect from an organisation that is complicit in Arab propaganda and delegitimization of Israel and Jews, of an organisation that accepts Hamas with its call for Genocide of all Jews, of an organisation that excluded Israel from its fold until recently when it decreed that Israel use a diamond emblem and and not a Star Of David as this could offend certain people! Now where have I heard that before ….sorry the loo beckons again!

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