Blogspot | 04Apr2011 | blackrod
Monday, April 04, 2011
Winnipeg Jewish Review declares: A
permanent Holocaust gallery, or else
There's a panic spreading
through the Jewish community over the threat facing the primacy of the
Holocaust exhibit at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.
One unexpected side effect is the emergence of truths long hidden from
the general public.
Rhonda Spivak, editor of the Winnipeg Jewish Review, has published a
clarion call to the Jewish community to fight back, and fight now, to
cement the status of the Holocaust gallery as one of only two permanent
galleries in the museum.
She's rattled by the success the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties
Association is having in turning the dabate over the Holocaust-only
gallery that's planned for the CMHR into a national issue.
Spivak wrote an 'open letter' to Lubomyr Luciuk, director of research
for the UCCLA, to lambaste him and spur the Jewish community to action.
(She called him Lobomyr Luciak. That mistake has since been corrected
online. Funny, the Winnipeg Free Press has twice published a wrong date
for the year of the Holodomor, the Great Famine that killed millions of
Ukrainians. Accuracy doesn't seem to be a high priority for the
proponents of the Holocaust-only gallery.)
Referencing a letter-to-the-editor (of the Free Press) from Luciuk,
"Reading your article
made it very clear to me that there is absolutely no reason why anyone
in the Jewish community should hold back and not speak their mind on
this issue. How are we as a community going to feel if in the final
result, there is no permanent Holocaust gallery in the CMHR?"
Then she let the cat out of the bag.
"At the very beginning of this project, even before it
ever became a government funded museum (remember that time Mr.
Luciak?), it was held out to the Jewish community that there would be a
permanent gallery dedicated to the Holocaust in the CMHR.
If you and your supporters have your way, that will not be the case.
Clearly, there is no point in waiting to speak out, or holding back. We
as a community are going to feel extremely resentful if efforts to
eliminate a permanent Holocaust Gallery are successful.
Why should we be silent on this issue when you are out there making all
sorts of noise?"
After a lengthy whine about how the "Jewish people have never done very
well in polls" she returned to the cat.
"There are a few questions that arise as a result of your rather
ferocious campaign to turn the clock back and reduce or eliminate the
permanent Holocaust gallery that the Jewish community
was led to believe would exist in the CMHR."
In no uncertain terms, Spivak ripped the mask off Gail Asper and the
Canadian Museum for "Human Rights."
It was sold to the Jewish community as a Holocaust museum. It was
ALWAYS intended to be a Holocaust museum. Without the Holocaust-only
gallery, WHO THE HELL CARES about the CMHR? says Rhonda Spivak.
"Are you willing to say publicly that if any private donor gave money
to the CMHR on the basis that it was represented to them at the time of
the donation that there would be a permanent Holocaust gallery, that
they are entitled to have their money returned if they so desire?"
"And should those in our
community who have designated bequests to the CMHR on the basis that
they naively believed that there would be a permanent Holocaust
gallery, consider changing their bequest? It seems like that may be a
It's our way or we want our money back, says Spivak.
Well, so much for the official line. It's not about the Holocaust, it's
about human rights, blah blah blah.
(That's why the FP was able to conclude a recent editorial with an ugly
metaphor without a peep of protest from Gail Asper or anyone connected
to the CMHR.
"Why does the Holocaust
get a place in the front seat? Only the uninformed ask questions like
that." Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print
edition March 24, 2011 A12
Get it? The Holocaust gets to sit in the front seat. Everyone else has
to sit in the back of the bus.)
Spivak then issued a threat, or what she at least thought would be a
"Is it time to begin considering the options of what we as a Jewish
community would like to have happen if there is no permanent Holocaust
"Should we begin fundraising for the building of a gallery that will be
at least as large as the 13,000 square foot Holocaust gallery we were
originally told would be included in the CMHR."
(Bwahahahaha. Oh no. Raise your own money and build your own museum?
That's too terrrrrrrible to imagine.)
"After all, if the size of the permanent Holocaust gallery becomes no
larger than a quarter to an eighth of that, maybe we’d we be better to
buy land near the Forks and put up our own museum, with a big sign that
says “ THIS IS THE PERMANENT HOLOCAUST GALLERY” THAT WE NAIVELY
BELIEVED WOULD BE PART OF THE CMHR.” At least that way we wouldn’t be
subject to the whims of this or that poll, or the upcoming election."
With that, Spivak called on the Jewish community to go to war with the
"Or maybe it’s time to begin penning a book where every member of our
community can at least use their freedom of expression to say how they
will feel if it turns out there is no permanent Holocaust gallery?"
"Is it time for the backers of a permanent Holocaust gallery to start
sending public letters, making phone calls to the CEO and Board of
Trustees of the Museum, and taking other initiatives to speak out? It’s
now or never. I don’t see any point in waiting."
"Should our Jewish community institutions both locally and in other
parts of Canada be speaking out? In my view the answer is yes."
At least one Jewish institution was way ahead of her.
Bernie Farber, chief executive officer of the Canadian Jewish Congress,
used the standard allusions to anti-semitism to discredit the Nanos
poll that drove Rhonda Spivak off the cliff. That poll showed that 60
percent of Canadians supported a single gallery to recognize genocide
in the world over one permanent gallery for one select genocide and
another for everyone else.
The poll was commissioned by the Canadians for Genocide Education whose
chairman is James Kafieh.
Farber told the National Post Kafieh’s involvement left “a bad taste”
in his mouth. He cited a submission Kafieh gave to the Toronto School
Board when they were considering adding the Holocaust to the curriculum
10 years ago. Kafieh pointed out that there were conflicting numbers of
dead in the Holocaust, which Farber found outrageous, although he now
concedes, as the National Post put it (March 31, 2011) "historians now
agree some original numbers at Auschwitz were exaggerated."
He fails to mention that
Kafieh has been consistent on the need to study all genocides, and not
only the Holocaust in isolation.
Here's an excerpt we found of a story that ran in the Toronto Sun,
right after the meeting that Farber found so objectionable.
Blumenfeld, David. Bare
all killing fields: Ethnics - Genocide their issue.
Toronto Sun, Thursday, March 27, 2003.
[Excerpt: To truly understand the nature of genocide, it's not enough
to just teach about the Jewish Holocaust in Ontario's classrooms, says
a group commemorating genocide. "Education on the Holocaust may not be
broad enough," said James Kafieh, member of Canadians for a Genocide
Museum. "We want to ensure that all genocides in history are taught."
The coalition of 41 ethnic groups met Tuesday night at Queen's Park for
the first annual Genocide Memorial Week, which they want the province
to recognize in law. "(Genocide's) been an all too common instance in
history," Kafieh said.
"It's the most extreme manifestation of racism and social intolerance
known." Kafieh said educators need to "compare and contrast" different
examples of 20th century genocide, rather than use one concrete
example. Anything else would "suggest a hierarchy of human suffering"
that would not advance better understanding about the subject, Kafieh
James Kafieh and Lubomyr Luciuk have one thing in common, they drive
the defenders of the CMHR crazy because they refuse to rise to the
repeated provocations and say something extreme that can be used to
That forces hired guns like University teacher Catherine Chatterley to
invent "evidence" of anti-semitism.
Her latest was the use of a postcard featuring the cover of a 1947
edition of George Orwell's novel Animal Farm as a sign that the UCCLA
thinks Jews are pigs which is anti-semitic imagery which is proof to
her that Luciuk and Kafieh are raving anti-semites.
But turnabout is fair play.
We don't profess to have the mind-reading capability of Winnipeg Free
Press employees like Dan Lett, but we can research an issue, and what
did we find...? A reason why the Jewish community is fighting tooth and
nail to keep the Holocaust and the Holodomor far apart in the Canadian
Museum for Human Rights?
The Holodomor was the state-organized famine that resulted in the
deaths of millions of Ukrainians in 1932-33, roughly eight years before
the Nazi's launched their campaign to kill all the Jews of Europe.
Studies of Communist Russia agree that Jews played a strong role in the
Communist party and the Communist government right up through the
Thirties. That is people who were born and raised Jews, since Communism
was an athiest ideology and presumably members were not practicing
But if Jews were a significant force in the government of Communist
Russia in 1932, then that means they bore some responsibility for the
Holodomor, which was conducted by the state.
In other words, Jews are just as capable of genocide as anyone. Is that
what the debate over the primacy of the Holocaust gallery is about?
Will the CMHR examine how a people who helped plan one genocide to
advance one ideology wound up consumed by another ideology?
We've often said there has been no prosecution of anyone responsible
for the Holodomor. We may have been wrong. We found this story from
JTA, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, which describes itself as " the
definitive source for American Jewish community news and opinion."
We reprint it in full:
Jewish group objects to ‘Great Famine’ case
June 15, 2009
KIEV, Ukraine (JTA) -- A Jewish group in Ukraine is objecting to a
criminal case brought over the "Great Famine" committed in the 1930s.
The nation's security service is pressing the case against a list of
former Soviet officials accused of committing the Holodomor, which
caused the deaths of millions in Ukraine in 1932-33. Most of the names
on the list were Jewish.
Ukrainian lawmaker Aleksandr Feldman, leader of the Ukrainian Jewish
Committee, said last week that it was "a farce" to press the case.
“All organizers of the Great Famine are dead," he said.
Last July, the Ukrainian Security Service released a list of
high-ranking Soviet state and Communist Party officials -- as well as
officials from NKVD, the police force of Soviet Russia -- that
essentially blamed Jews and Latvians responsible for perpetrating and
executing the famine because most of the names on the list were Jewish.
The Ukrainian Jewish Committee called on the secret service to revise
the list, which incited interethnic hatred, in order to clear up the
Feldman believes there is a danger that the “Holodomor Affair”
materials are being used for political purposes.
In late May, security service head Valentin Nalivaychenko claimed at a
meeting with representatives of the World Congress of Ukrainians that
“Ukraine has collected enough evidence to bring a criminal case
regarding the famine, which was artificially created by the Bolshevik
regime and caused mass death of citizens.”
Through the World Congress of Ukrainians, Nalivaychenko turned to
leading foreign lawyers with a request to help find out the
circumstances connected with preparing and committing the genocide.
Free Press, Holodomor, UCCLA