August 10, 2005


Harry Belafonte, Woody Allen Criticized for Statements about Nazis (The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies, 8-8-05)

A leading Holocaust Studies institute is urging entertainers Harry Belafonte, Woody Allen, and Dick Gregory to retract their recent statements comparing the Bush administration, Israelis, and black conservatives to Nazis.

Belafonte even claimed that there were "a lot of Jews high up in the hierarchy of (Adolf Hitler's) Third Reich."

"Some entertainers simply don't know much about history," said Dr. Rafael Medoff, director of The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies, a research and education institute focusing on America’s response to the Holocaust. "The fact is that there were no Jews in Hitler's hierarchy, the policies of America and Israel are not similar to those of Hitler, and African-American conservatives are not comparable to Nazis."

The Wyman Institute is urging the three entertainers to publicly retract their "inaccurate and hurtful" remarks about Hitler and the Holocaust. Dr. Medoff said: "Such analogies pollute public discourse, by trivializing the brutal horrors committed by the Nazis. Hitler was a maniacal dictator whose regime systematically annihilated six million Jews, and launched a world war that caused the deaths of more than forty million people. How can any reasonable person put Hitler and the Nazis in the same sentence as American or Israeli leaders, or black conservatives?"

Because they're trivial men?

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 10, 2005 8:41 AM

Does this mean I get to compare Woody Allen to the Nazis because so many of them were sexual deviants?

Posted by: Matt Murphy at August 10, 2005 8:59 AM

Ahem. Applied Darwinism, anyone?

Posted by: Brit at August 10, 2005 9:30 AM

It is not enough to refute the silly characterization of present-day American conservatives as "Nazis." We must examine the entire history of race relations including American slavery and American expansion.

This is another hard teaching. It was indeed a moral calamity, as R.E. Lee put it, that some of us disregarded our civilizational values when we came into contact with the African/Islamic institution of Black slavery. It was most definitely, not, however, "genocide." OTC, The West, led by England, and joined, in the fullness of time, by the United States, did a pretty good job of ending it.

People like Bellafonte are going off the deep end because they can't handle the truth.

Posted by: Lou Gots at August 10, 2005 9:37 AM

Brit: That being historically ignorant is a survival trait leading to wealth and fame?

Posted by: David Cohen at August 10, 2005 9:49 AM


Well, historical and especially geographical ignorance never hurt the bank balance of any Hollywood movie star, director or producer that I've heard of.

I was referring to something else, though. A case of someone else being a bit rich.

Posted by: Brit at August 10, 2005 10:01 AM

geez, I assumed Brit wanted to exterminate these blacks and Jews for Darwinian purposes.

Posted by: oj at August 10, 2005 10:08 AM

David, is this sort of rhetoric having an effect in the Jewish community, turning them off of the Democrats or making it easier to vote Republican?

Posted by: Randall Voth at August 10, 2005 10:09 AM

The polls suggest not much.

Posted by: oj at August 10, 2005 10:14 AM

"entertainer ... Dick Gregory"

This has been an oxymoron for decades. Was he ever (deliberately) entertaining?

And why, except for dating tips, does anyone care what Woody Allen says?

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at August 10, 2005 12:04 PM

The Father Judd voted for him for president--that's entertaining.

Posted by: oj at August 10, 2005 12:17 PM

Brit: nah. If Darwin were right there's no way Woody Allen would ever have reached puberty. (Of course, we have no theory at all as to why he never got past puberty. Feel free to hypothesize.)

Posted by: joe shropshire at August 10, 2005 1:21 PM

I thought Dick Gregory died of starvation back the late 60's.

Posted by: OldHat at August 10, 2005 1:28 PM
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