This Week with David Rovics
This Week with David Rovics
Wadi Gaza is Arabic for Babi Yar, and Aaron Bushnell is American for Szmuel Zygelboym

Wadi Gaza is Arabic for Babi Yar, and Aaron Bushnell is American for Szmuel Zygelboym

The holocaust that is underway in Gaza is being enabled by the US government and denied by the mainstream US press.

When the German Nazis and their Ukrainian collaborators massacred their Jewish, Roma, and other victims, they often coaxed them to the site of the massacre by offering them food. For media consumption, they had nicer stories about what they were up to.

81 years ago now, the Nazis' industrial death machine was already in full motion. So many of those killed died of famine and disease long before ever reaching a gas chamber. One member of the Polish Underground made it into and out of the Warsaw Ghetto during its last weeks of existence, and also made it into and out of a transit camp en route to Auschwitz.

He saw the naked, starved bodies of the dead all over the Warsaw Ghetto, and the naked, starved bodies of the dying being stuffed into cattle cars, often just left in them until they finished dying. He got to London, where he made sure the leaders of the Polish government in exile fully understood what was happening there.

When the operative from the Polish Underground got into the ghetto and saw what was going on, he asked his guides from the Jewish Combat Organization what they thought people on the outside should do to raise attention to what was happening. They responded that they thought people should do extreme things that communicate the extreme nature of what was happening, such as publicly starving themselves to death.

Szmuel Zygelboym was a leader of the Polish Socialist Bund in exile in London. Upon getting news of the scale and horrors of the industrial slaughter of his fellow Polish Jews from this emissary, by the time the last of the Jews of Warsaw had been killed, including much of his own family, Zygelboym left a long communique explaining that he was killing himself in order to call attention to the systematic extermination of the Jews of Poland by the Nazis that was then taking place.

He would have publicly starved himself to death, but he was afraid the British authorities would just have him locked up in a mental institution, so he opted for poison instead.

There are things happening today that it's really important we all be clear on. I'd break them down into four basic points of understanding. 

1) A holocaust is underway.

A holocaust happens when an entire population is targeted for elimination, by means such as famine, disease, and/or various other forms of mass killing, such as carpet-bombing cities, firing machine guns into helpless crowds of people, using various forms of chemical weapons such as poison gas, napalm, white phosphorous, and cluster munitions in order to indiscriminately kill large numbers of people, and doing all these things day in and day out.

Examples of other holocausts include the centuries of persecution of Native Americans -- which are perhaps best understood as a whole series of smaller genocides, each bearing a remarkable resemblance to what's happening right now in Gaza, minus the Air Force element. One of the many examples I'd use to illustrate this series of holocausts with would be the exile and intentional death by famine and disease of most of the Indians of Minnesota in the wake of Little Crow's uprising of 1862.

Examples of other holocausts would include Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as well as the industrial carnage wrought on the entire populations of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia by the US Air Force in the 1960's and 1970's, which was fundamentally genocidal, as it was about targeting the people -- with the recognition that when facing a People's War, your enemy is, in fact, the People.

Committing genocide is nothing new for the US. It doesn't belittle one holocaust to highlight another -- unless you're one of these people who has managed to convince themselves that some people matter (such as certain Europeans), and others don't (such as American Indians, Vietnamese, or Palestinians).

2) The United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and other major countries are directly enabling the Gaza Holocaust.

Unlike the Nazi holocaust, where photographs and video were tightly controlled and operations were kept secret, the holocaust underway in Gaza being perpetrated by Israeli occupation forces is literally being livestreamed by its victims in real time. Millions of people in Gaza are being deprived of food or clean water, and we're watching them die of dehydration and starvation in real time. Their home is a landscape of rubble, with unknown numbers of people buried underneath it, and we can see them digging with their bare hands through the cement to try to find the bodies of their neighbors.

When thousands of starving Palestinians attempt to get food from supposed aid convoys, they are systematically mowed down with automatic weapons, and this is happening every day. The main reason Israeli leaders have pursued such militaristic solutions to every problem they've ever faced, and the main reason Israel is able to continue its military campaign now is because the US, the UK, and Germany supply them with everything they need and more -- and the US vetoes the rest of the United Nations calling for an immediate ceasefire, just as the US has been protecting this rogue regime with its veto for decades.

3) The US media and most of the western media is actively denying this holocaust.

What does it mean to be a holocaust denier? The term is usually used to describe people who don't believe the Nazis systematically exterminated millions of people during the latter years of the Third Reich -- using killing fields, forced starvation, forced extended nudity in winter, gas chambers, and other such means.

Many years into Hitler's reign, the western media treated the German press as a legitimate source of information, despite the increasing censorship there. When the German press ran a story about a nice, tidy detention camp where all the prisoners played classical music, for years the tendency of the western press was to cover these stories like they'd cover other international stories coming from a legitimate source.

When the Israeli press tells us their soldiers fired on starving Palestinians because they were "looting" food from trucks, and that most of them died from trampling each other anyway, this nonsense is treated as legitimate information by most of the western press -- if they're covering Gaza anymore at all. What is actually happening, clearly, verifiably, is every time Palestinians gather in a public place where they think there might be the prospect of food, they are gunned down by Israeli forces, who are waiting for them to come out of the buildings they've already destroyed. The food is there to draw them out, it's a trap.

This is obviously what's going on, daily, and reports to the contrary are nothing more than a matter of western press and politicians believing a completely unbelievable, verifiably repeatedly dishonest source of information -- the Israeli military -- and acting on their lies as if they were true. They're obviously lying, it's a pattern that's been going on for months, years, decades. Believing lies when you know they're lies is known as denial. Holocaust denial, in this horrific nightmare of an instance.

4) The appropriate responses to a holocaust are whatever measures might have an impact on stopping it or raising the alarm about it, regardless of how extreme they might be.

This Week with David Rovics
This Week with David Rovics
If I do an interview, whether as the interviewer or interviewee, or a livestream event, new song, audio essay or various other things, it’ll often go out as a podcast here.