Haaretz reports that a crazed neo-Nazi stabbed a pregnant Muslim woman to death in front of her 3 year old son and husband. The murderer had previously taunted the woman and attempted to tear her head-scarf off her head. She was pursuing a civil action against him in a Dresden court when the killing occured. How in heaven’s name does a violent hater like this get a knife into a German courtroom?
Thankfully, the German Jewish community has had the sense to denounce this foul incident and visit the husband in the hospital where he is recovering from a stab wound inflicted by the killer and a bullet wound inflicted by a courtroom guard who mistook him (how?) for an attacker.
The leader of German Jews said:
All those people who have in the past belittled our concern about a phobia against Islam in Germany are seeing after this awful act how wrong they were…”
Officials from a German Muslim group and the country’s main Jewish group made a joint visit Monday to the Dresden hospital where the victim’s husband is being treated.
“You don’t have to be a Muslim to act against anti-Muslim behavior, and you don’t have to be a Jew to act against anti-Semitism,” said Stephan Kramer, the general secretary of the Central Council of Jews.
I issue a challenge to Muslim-haters among us like Daniel Pipes to denounce this despicable act. Let us see whether there is any act of violence against Muslims which would trouble their consciences. We shouldn’t let people like Abe Foxman off the hook either since the ADL claims a mission of combatting racism and religious prejudice around the world.
It is worth noting that the attacker is an immigrant from Russia where neo-Nazi and anti-foreigner sentiments runs deep. Vicious attacks on minorities of this sort are commonplace. But how can the German authorities not have been more aware of the violent propensities of someone like this and done a better job of protecting the victims?
How could the German officials, authorities let this happen in court? She was stabbed 18 times for chrissake! There’s some serious criminal negligence here. And even given the negligence of letting this racist murderer somehow get to her physical proximity and somehow smuggle something to stab her with into the courtroom, you’d think that after the first several stabs someone might play the hero and jump in there and protect the pregnant woman. Come on, Germany, you can do better than this. Not a pretty day for the Federal Republic. I know it’s not p.c. (any more) in many Germans’ minds to be tough and manly, but come on, get with it. This is pathetic as well as horrible.
I suppose that the German courts are much like Finnish courts. Very few have metal detectors and are not full of armed policemen. That court session in which that tragic event happened was a civil suit session and even the husband was not prepared to such tragic events. Why the blame in such way the German and Russian society for an event that could happen anywhere?
We know very little about the attacker. Basically nothing besides part of his name Alex A. The forename Alex is not a common Russian forename, more it hints to German and/or to Jewish roots (also for “Slavic” Russians it is not so easy to immigrate to Germany). Also calling the victim in previous events as “terrorist,” “bitch” and “Islamist” is language often heard around the settlements not necessary slogans used only by neo-nazis or “Russians”.
Let’s wait until we know more of the murderer. Then we know was the reaction of the German Jewish society a real sincere reaction, an less honourable attempt of keeping up the German “reputation” of the Nazi past or a pre-emptive PR stunt.
By the way how actively the German Jewish society reacts when such events happen in Israel against Palestinians? Do they visit the relatives in Germany of those pregnant Palestinian women who die because of complications when their ambulances are queuing on the check points.
Peter D says
The forename Alex is not a common Russian forename
what are you smoking? I am from Russian and it is as commont as dirt. It is true there are plenty of Russian Jews in Germany – I myself have relatives there – but there are plenty of ethnic Russians too.
What are you drinking?
I suppose Aleksey or Oleksy are more common Russian forenames as Alex is. Like Pyotr is a more common name as its western form Peter is in Russia.
Sure there are plenty of Russians in Germany. So there are also in Israel etc. So is a Israel racist country simply because there are much Russians?
Peter D says
SimoHurtta, Alex (along with Sasha) is usually the diminutive of Aleksandr, not of Aleksey, diminutive of which is usually Alesha, though some may use Alex (Oleksy is not a version you’d see in Russia at all, I am not sure where you’re coming up with that one from.) So, believe me, people use Alex in Russia all the time. I understand that you’re just across the border from there, but I think I know just a tad better in this case, sorry.
So is a Israel racist country simply because there are much Russians?
Is this a sincere question or an attempt to imply that this was something I said? I mentioned that there are plenty of ethnic Russians in Germany because if you read your original comment, you implied that there are better chances that the attacker was of Jewish origin than of ethnic Russian, with one of your arguments using your questionable knowledge of Russian names (as if Jews are more likely to use “Alex” than Russians – which is a baloney.) This comment caught my attention for its passive aggressiveness, so to speak – you were trying to say something without saying it too clearly, leaving your options open, and it irked me.
Now, it might well be that the attacker is indeed of Jewish origin and there is no denying there are plenty of racists among Russian Jews, unfortunately.
I don’t believe I was “blaming” German or Russian society for this. I was speaking specifically to this incident. I actually have a lot of respect for contemporary German society, that’s partly why I was so appalled by this cockup, and yes, this incident is sadly part of the danger of having less of a police state and high security society than, say, we do. Overall, I’ll go with freedom over “security”. But I don’t think that makes this Muslim woman’s family feel better. Let’s face it, this court sit. was not at all adequate.
Richard Silverstein says
Other news reports say the attacker was a Russian of German descent from the city of Perm, which I believe is in Siberia (but not positive about that). Some Muslim blogs are claiming the attacker was Jewish which I’ve not read in any credible news publication & therefore disbelieve.
Anti-Semitism and Muslimphobia have common roots and common themes. If only rabidly anti-semitic Muslims and rabidly Muslim-phobic Jews recognised this.
Interesting and important point, Irfan. I’ve thought likewise for some time now. I’ve even noticed how rabid anti-Muslim caricatures and diatribes possess some of the the features & characteristics of the old European anti-Semitism. It strikes me that some significant portion of Israeli society has internalized the old European racial anti-Semitism and turned it around on the Palestinian Arabs, inverted it so to speak, with themselves now as the masters and the Palestinians as a subjugated, sub-human population, the ultimate Other, to be dealt with in one way or the other.
On the other hand, maybe the killer was NOT motivated by hatred for any particular ethnic group, just like the Muslim who killed the woman in the Seattle Jewish Center. He was ruled insane, and so the antisemitic remarks he made at the time can be simply dismissed, so maybe it is the same with the perpetrator in this case. This would mean that the fact that he comes from a place known for hatred of foreigners would be irrelevant.
Only a maniac would attack an unarmed pregnant woman-the most heinous kind of crime.
RE: “It is worth noting that the attacker is an immigrant from Russia where neo-Nazi and anti-foreigner sentiments runs deep.”
MY COMMENT: It is also worth noting that Avigdor Lieberman is from Moldovia and there are approximately one million other Israeli’s who are immigrants from the former Soviet Union.
PS. Kudos to Stephan Kramer and the Central Council of Jews!
It is also worth noting you’ve insinuated all Israeli immigrants from the former Soviet Union are racist idiots. Thanks for the generalization.
As for the crime, it is disgraceful … I hope her husband and kid can re-build their shattered lives.
RE: “…you’ve insinuated all Israeli immigrants from the former Soviet Union are racist idiots…”
MY COMMENT: It goes without saying that all Israeli immigrants from the former Soviet Union are NOT racist idiots. Similarly, in the “Old Confederacy” during the 1950s, all whites were not racist idiots.
*AN ISRAELI YOUTH NAMED IVANOV QUOTED IN A “HAARETZ” ARTICLE OF 02-07-09 ENTITLED “Lieberman’s anti-Arab ideology wins over Israel’s teens” –
“We have a problem: Upper Nazareth is surrounded by minorities. There are lots of incidents with them. Women are scared to walk in the streets, and people are afraid they’ll be stabbed. No one knows what to do about it at this point. There are people who live here and during a war they act as a fifth column. It will only be possible to make peace with them after we make war.”
SOURCE – http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1061910.html
*AN EXCERPT FROM A HAARETZ ARTICLE OF 01/27/09 ENTITLED “Police arrest Jewish teens for allegedly assaulting Arab youth in Galilee”:
An Arab youth from the Galilee village of Majd el-Krum was injured lightly on Monday night after a gang of Jewish teens beat him with sticks while he was walking along the promenade in Tiberias.
Police arrested eight suspects ranging from 14 to 16 years of age who are believed to have taken part in the assault.
The victim, Mohammed Mansur, was rushed to Poriah Hospital near Tiberias, where he was treated for injuries sustained all over his body…..
ALSO SEE: “The Dirty Little Secret About Obama’s Problems With Israelis and Russians” by M.J. Rosenberg, 07/08/09
(EXCERPT) …Israel is now the home to a million recently arrived Russian Jews and they are, to put it mildly, obsessed with Obama’s race (not in a good way). Check out this Ha’aretz article about how the mainstream Russian media in Israel is convening television panels on whether or not Obama can overcome the “curse” God put on those with black skins. Bottom line: blacks are meant to be slaves. Why doesn’t Obama know that?
ENTIRE POST – http://tpmcafe.talkingpointsmemo.com/2009/07/08/the_dirty_little_secret_about_obamas_problems_with/index.php
SEE ALSO – “Kuznetsov: Everybody is a Racist – Only Russians Think it Legitimate to Express It” by Jerry Haber, 07/06/09
(excerpt)….Apparently, things are worse in the Former Soviet Union, a hotbed of ethnicities and nationalities. Most of the Russian Jews who made aliyah at the end of the last century – close to 20% of Israel’s population, apparently — were taught very well to hate. At least, they were not taught not to hate….
ENTIRE POST – http://themagneszionist.blogspot.com/2009/07/kuznetsov-everybody-is-racist-only.html
PS. No insinuations or generalizations are hereby intended.
RE: “…you’ve insinuated all Israeli immigrants from the former Soviet Union are racist idiots…
MY COMMENT: Sometimes ‘insinuations’ are in the mind of the beholder.
Richard Silverstein says
“All” immigrants? Where did you see that modifier? I only noted that racism & violence are rampant in Russia where a neo-Nazi/skinhead movement thrives. It’s very possible this thug is a refugee from that scene who was looking for a safe haven in Germany among that country’s neo-Nazi thuggery.
He was a Nazi. That’s why the Jewish group did something about it.
Let them decry the regular assaults on Palestinians by rabid fanatical Jewish settlers in the OT, with the full support of the most immoral Army in the world.
Oh and the Occupation. Oh and the indiscriminate killing of civilians by the IDF. Etc.
It’s alright to stand up alongside Muslims when :
A) they are attacked by UNCONTROVERSIAL racists (such as Nazis)
B) they aren’t Palestinian and aren’t fighting imperialism and colonialism – non-violently or violently, with words or force
Purely political move. No substance. No meaning. It’s too easy. Unless you’re praising Jews for not hating Muslims irrationally as well.
“Thousands of books drenched in cooking oil – that is the latest exploit of the Zionist fanatics who regularly attack property and people in Paris and get away with it.
In the early afternoon of Friday, July 3, five men, mostly masked, stormed into the “Resistances” bookstore located in a quiet residential neighborhood of the 17th arrondissement in northwest Paris. To the startled women working in the shop, as well as two customers, they announcing that they were from the Jewish Defense League and began ripping books off shelves and tables, dousing them heavily with cooking oil, and then smashing four computers before leaving rapidly in a waiting vehicle.
The bookstore is owned and operated by Olivia Zemor and Nicolas Shashahani, who are also the leaders of the very active militant group CAPJPO-EuroPalestine (CAPJPO stands for Coordination des Appels pour une Paix Juste au Proche Orient). In addition to a wide collection of books on the Middle East and other subjects, including fiction, the bookstore has a reading room and a lending library, gives courses in English and Arabic, and possesses a modest but well-attended auditorium where authors are invited to speak. ”
JDL at it again – in France.
LD, thanks for this information about the disgusting behavior of the JDL in France. Maybe the leader of German Jews can speak out against this racist act of vandalism and physical intimidation in neighboring France. Something tells me that when it comes to an event relating to THOSE arabs and muslims and the issue of Israel, they won’t be very interested. These varying incidents and the various reactions to them do tend point out the hypocrisy and political nature of identity groups when they “speak out” on a particular incident. At the same time, it was still a nice gesture for Germany’s main Jewish group to visit the injured husband in the hospital, however “political” it might have been one can still appreciate the act-in-itself. What a tragic, senseless murder.
Arie Brand says
“He was a Nazi. That’s why the Jewish group did something about it.”
Is that so? Israel has allegedly no greater friend in Europe than the Dutch parliamentarian and Islamophobe Geert Wilders. Wilders is not Jewish but lived, around 1980, for two years in Israel (he was just a late adolescent then) and claims that he “fell in love ” with the country. Since then, he claims, he has visited the country 40 times and feels that “special bond” when he sets foot at Ben Gurion airport.
He has called Israel “the advance guard of the West” and the “first defence line of Europe against the wave of Islamization” .
The love is reciprocated by certain sectors of the Israeli public. At a recent conference of hardliners in Jerusalem he was the only one of 6 speakers to receive a standing ovation from the 600-strong audience. Wilders has praised Lieberman as courageous and intelligent and has pointed to similarities between his Yisrael Beiteinu party and his own Freedom-party (which now, according to opinion polls, threatens to become one of the biggest Dutch political parties).
In spite of all this his anti-Islam film FITNA was strongly condemned by the Dutch pro-Zionist Center for Information and Documentation (CIDI). Ronny Naftaniel, its Director, called the footage generalising and counterproductive and crossing the line of legitimate criticism. This opinion is shared by the Dutch judiciary. Wilders will be prosecuted for “sowing hatred” against an ethnic group.
The ADL has, to its credit, also come out strongly against Wilders’ Florida speeches and called his “message of hate against Islam” “inflammatory, divisive and antithetical to American ideals.”
The notorious Islamophobe Robert Spencer strongly criticised the ADL for this in the pages of Frontpage Magazine.
I haven’t much sympathy for either the ADL or the Dutch CIDI but I am pleased to be able to point to their defence of tolerance on these occasions.
It consoles one for the fact that Wilders got, in 2008, the “Freedom Award” from the American “Freedom Alliance” and was then also made “Man of the Year” by the “Horowitz Freedom Centre”.
Wilders is of course a far greater public danger than some half-crazed Neo-Nazi who can commit such a vile act partly because of the mental climate created by this Dutch rogue politician and those who support him.
Arie, thanks for that info, good stuff. The cynic in me will say that the ADL throws out crumbs of universalism and tolerance like you mentioned to attempt providing some credibility to their “Anti-Defamation” fighting hate mission statement while they simultaneously defame people like Jimmy Carter, Bill Moyers, Tony Judt and whoever else stands up against the general dehumanization of the Arab/Persian/Muslim world in the media. Pretty two-faced, it’s hard to not see the one as cover for the other. I guess you take what you can get.
Who cares if they condemn the OBVIOUS racists.
It takes no moral strength to do so.
So a Jewish group stands in solidarity with a Muslim man after his PREGNANT WIFE IS STABBED 18 TIMES TO DEATH BY A NAZI.
That’s essentially the best scenario possible for Jewish groups who do not want to look overtly tribal and insane.
It’s like when the ADL praised that Muslim guy in NYC for stopping a bunch of thugs from beating up a Jewish couple during Christmas/Hannakah.
The Muslims guy was not Arab and I doubt he decided to help the Jewish guy because he was Jewish. I doubt there was any movie-like hesitation where he questioned himself on whether he should help a Jew in need.
It’s all pretentious garbage.
Like I said, take a MEANINGFUL moral stand. Say something about the settlers. Say something about the army. Say something about the Occupation.
This entire conflict has been going on for OVER 60 years. The Occupation – over 40 years.
You do not judge people by meaningless gestures. You judge them by those which force them to look inward and face REAL challenges and fears.
So for example, there was a Rabbi who was fasting for Darfur or something like that.
I mean, it’s EASY to criticize OTHER PEOPLE but when infinitely harder to criticize yourself or the people and things you love.
I can criticize China on it’s human rights, but who CARES?
I’m not Chinese. I’ve never been there. My country does not support them. I have no connection to them whatsoever.
It’s the TYPICAL Zionist response too:
“Why are you criticizing the poor poor Jewish State when there is Sudan and Darfur and blah blah blah (as if they give a damn)?”
This is intellectually shallow.
It’s just like the racism issue – across all boards.
Would you people compare the racism of the Nazi to the racism of a Palestinian youth who is humiliated by Jewish colonists and soldiers almost daily under Occupation? The Jewish State which starves and kills him and his family?
Norman Finkelstein said his mother held anti-German views due to the Holocaust. Can you BLAME her? You know it’s wrong to hate all Germans. Just as it is wrong to hate all Jews.
That’s the racism part, that IRRATIONALITY of conflation.
HOWEVER, don’t be so holier-than-thou and behave as though you cannot UNDERSTAND that hate and how it arose.
We will never be honest with each other. We will never push the social consciousness further if we keep behaving as though issues of racism can be explained as goddamn shallowly as a Hollywood movie.
Like I said, let a Jewish group – a ZIONIST group is more accurate, because there are plenty of groups like Jewish Voices for Peace and blah blah who do the MEANINGFUL work – take a stand against the crimes of the JEWISH State. Let them look inward.
Don’t Muslim groups reflexively condemn Islamic radicalism? YES! Want to know why? Because everyone is down their throat about it.
Jews are on top and living in privilege – relatively speaking. You know who you are when you’ve lost everything – because you’ll do anything to survive. You know what you’re capable of. And you know how moral you are, how charitable you are (in every sense), how sincere and progressive you are – when you have every advantage in the world.
It’s impressive for a Jew to die for the civil rights of a Black person – and some did, right? However, that does not take any introspection. Jews themselves were subject to hatred and blah blah in much greater degree back then.
Another example is MLK JR. MLK was a hero as long as he was bashing racist Sheriffs in the south. When he began talking about Vietnam, the NY Times essentially said he had worn out his welcome and become obsolete.
Again, lets think a bit more about these things and stop splurging. I know in the age of Obama, mediocrity is exalted as divine but let’s try to be realistic…
Arie Brand says
Well, I agree with most of what LD says (having said it myself many times) but I also emphatically agree with Warren: “you take what you can get.”
Let us assume that it is all hypocrisy. In that case it would be wise to stick to the old adage that “hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue”. A tribute is a tribute.
Stephan Kramer is not exactly the leader of german jews, he is a leading functionary of the “Zentralrat der Juden”, which does not include all german jews. Just BTW.
Here is some more information, including translated quotes from some German newspapers.
I this case the focus should not be put on some alleged misconduct or negligance of the official side. I think that the general sentiments in Germany towards muslims should be addressed here and what role leading intellectuals (at least he once was an intellectual) like Ralph Giordano play in fueling such sentiments, when they lament that scarf wearing women offend his asthetic sense, are “human penguins” and that he does not want to ban scarfs (legally), but that he does not want to see them either. (Well, Alex prevented Marwa from being seen from asthetics like Mr. Giordano, I guess). And he, Mr. Giordano, wants to be allowed to say something like that publicly without being regarded an antimuslim racist, rather a reasonable critic, like his fans from the german antimuslim hateblog No.1 “politicallyincorrect” (no link) do not like being called Nazis, because they parade around their alleged love for Israel like a monstrance and are also reasonable critics of “Islam”.
This blog with his feverish hate speech, the openly advocated violence against Palestinians, Iraqis, Muslims in general and its (the blog’s) critics has been promoted from various Israel firsters like H. M. Broder (writes for “Der Spiegel and various other MSM), U.W. Sahm (Middle East correspondent of n-tv, a small german TV news station and writes for various other, some christian, publications and a fan of “Honestly Concerned”) and others. Giordano tried to distance himself halfheartedly from Nazis like “Pro-Köln”, who agitate, like Giordano, against Mosques in german towns, by saying that he knows that those guys would put him in a gas chamber, if they could…
The problem is not that little hate blog with it’s hord of disciples, who spit out their hate 24/7/365. They are far less than they think and than it seems, compared to the noise they utter. The problem is the acceptance of racist views within the mainstream (“die Mitte der Gesellschaft”), as long it is “the muslim”, who is targeted and that the Alexes of this society can get the impression that their racism is no racism at all and is shared by large parts of the society.
And Stephan Kramer? At least he knows when it’s time to give some lip services.
Richard Silverstein says
Thank you for giving us a more comprehensive view of the political scene in Germany.
that’s what i always wonder
how big are the Zionist rallies in Europe and the US compared the Palestinian rallies?
and are those opinion polls accurate?
i can understand why the US is more supportive
i mean Zionism is part of our culture and Jews have assimilated with American culture
and look at portrayals of Arabs and Muslims in Hollywood – ‘Reel Bad Arabs’ by Jack Sheehan is the authoritative work on this.
if Americans are getting both lies from the State funneled through the MSM essentially and racist and bigoted stereotypes constantly reinforced through popular film culture then what hope is there?
its amazing how simple this conflict is when you take a look at the facts
Youssef Ahmed A. says
It is sad that the victim being an Arab and a Muslim, few have spoken about this murder in the Western media. This murder is a horrible crime. Be the victim a Muslim, a Jew, a Christian, a Buddhist, an atheist, or whatever, this should not matter. Killing another human being is EVIL, whether this takes place in Saudi Arabia, Israel and Occupied Palestinian territories, China and Xinjiang, Chetchenya, Iraq, or wherever. The German Jewish Council folks have saved Germany’s honor since they were the only one Germans to speak about the horrible murder when it occurred. Mr. Silverstein, thank you for a great blog.
Maybe the JDL Germany is behind the dead?! They are more dangerous than the JDL in the USA. Head of the JDL Germany is Steven Weigang, a right wing radical and extremist Kahanist. He should go in prison and throw the key away.