SPECIAL NOTICE: To all israelstreet readers who celebrate Easter, your humble servant would like to extend the happiest of wishes today. Some 25,000 special permits have been given to Arab Christians in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza to visit Jerusalem on this Easter Sunday. More than 200 Coptic Christians from Egypt are also visiting Jerusalem today.
UPDATE (5:00 pm): Two Qassam rockets fired by Palestinian terrorists in Gaza struck near Netivot at 6:48 am this morning. At 8:57 am, impending rocket sirens were heard in southern Israeli communities near the Gaza border.
Your humble servant is finding it hard to believe this week that anyone is surprised by German Nobel Prize winning author Gunter Grass’ latest poetic rant against Israel.
After all, it hasn’t been that long since Grass finally came “somewhat” clean about his “exploits” during World War II. In his biography, Grass admitted to trying to fight for the Nazis at age 15 by volunteering for the submarine service. Rejected because of his age, he continued to do everything possible to get into a Nazi fighting unit, eventually succeeding two years later when he joined the Waffen SS.
Lest anyone forget, the Waffen SS was one of the most hideous of all Nazi units, beginning as Adolf Hitler’s private guard and later branching out into running the concentration camps, and operating separate infantry and armor sections.
And what Grass did in the Waffen SS is still not known. He claims that he was in a tank division that only engaged in “reconnaissance” behind Russian lines. He claims that he had never fired a shot before he was wounded on April 20, 1945 and knocked out of the war. Of course, who knows if what Grass claims to be the case is actually true–and all evidence points to the fact that it is not. Because the Waffen SS committed hundreds of massacres of hundreds of thousands of civilians–especially Jews–it was declared “a criminal organization” after the war at the Nuremberg Trials.
But the disingenuity of Grass knows no bounds. In a recent interview, the author noted that “To me initially, the Waffen SS was not something appalling, but an elite unit that was always sent in where it was dangerous and that had a reputation of suffering the most casualties.” And then he remarked that “sometime later” he felt guilty about what he had done when he fatuously asked himself the question: “Could [I] have realized at the time what was going on?”
Grass’ “moral searching” does not even address the issue of “would he have acted if had supposedly known what was going on”? But, of course Grass already knows the answer to that unasked question because like most Germans, he knew exactly what was going on and did nothing.
Which leads us to the Grass’ latest literary effort: a poem entitled “What Must Be Said” in which he singles out the Jewish state of Israel as the chief threat to world peace: “Why do I only speak out now/Aged and with my last drop of ink:/Israel’s nuclear power is endangering/Our already fragile world peace?”
It is bad enough that Grass sees Israel as the most significant threat to world peace, but he goes on to use the German verb ausloschen to gruesomely suggest that Israel might commit a Holocaust by annihilating the peace-loving Iranian people.
To the credit of many Germans, Grass has been roundly condemned for his latest work (in contrast to the vast praise being lavished on him by the Iranians). And it has been the German newspaper Welt that has most accurately denounced Gunther Grass for what he is: “the eternal anti-Semite.”