Nationalism is synonymous with fanaticism. I believe nationalism is the scourge that will threaten the next century and the next millennium. Fanaticism and power together can become the most lethal of combinations. We see it today in the war in the Balkans. It is true that each human being loves his native land. But patriotism pushed to the extreme and to excess often emerges as ruthless fanaticism. To express one's attachment to one's country is laudable.- Elie Wiesel, former member in the jewish terrorist organisation "Irgun", Nobel Peace Prize laureate, wrote a fictionalised porn novel called "Night" (Bantam Books)
Tag: Elie Wiesel
Wiesel tells a story about a visit to a Rebbe…
Wiesel tells a story about a visit to a Rebbe, a Hasidic rabbi, he hadn’t seen for 20 years.
The Rebbe is upset to learn that Wiesel has become a writer, and wants to know what he writes.
“Stories,” Wiesel tells him, “… true stories”:
About people you knew?
“Yes, about people I might have known.”
About things that happened?
“Yes, about things that happened or could have happened.”
But they did not?
“No, not all of them did. In fact, some were invented from almost the beginning to almost the end.”
The Rebbe leaned forward as if to measure me up and said with more sorrow than anger:
That means you are writing lies!
I did not answer immediately. The scolded child within me had nothing to say in his defence. Yet, I had to justify myself:
“Things are not that simple, Rebbe. Some events do take place but are not true; others are – although they never occurred.“
How many millions of Jews were in these camps at any particular time? How many had passed through the Reinhard camps or other transit camps just like them? What happened to the Jews as the Soviets advanced westward eventually? How many Jews were the Germans able to take west with them? What happened to the Jews that came under Soviet control? How many Jews were killed by Soviet forces for having been pro-German collaborators? Why were the Auschwitz Jews so terrified of the Soviets that they actually "chose" in huge numbers to go west with the retreating SS, supposedly the greatest, mass murderers of Jews, rather than be "liberated" by Soviet forces. Elie Wiesel and his father both "chose" to go with the SS.- Friedrich Paul Berg