1919 “Gemlich letter” by Hitler on Jews: did it prefigure the Shoah?

Via today’s online edition of the Yediot Achronot, I learned that the Simon Wiesenthal Center announced its acquisition of a unique document in the history of the Shoah: a 4-page typewritten letter dated September 16, 1919 by Adolf Hitler (y”sh),  then a lance corporal (Obergefreiter) in the German army, on his views about the Jewish people. Genesis of the letter:

Hitler returned from a military hospital to Munich in early 1919. There he underwent a Reichswehr sponsored course of systematic political education for demobilizing soldiers that featured Pan­German nationalism, antisemitism, and anti­socialism. These same themes were prominent in Bavarian politics following the repression of the Munich revolution of 1918­19. Because antisemitism had not played a notable part in Bavarian politics prior to the revolutionary disturbances, a Herr Adolf Gemlich was prompted to send an inquiry about the importance of the “Jewish question” to Captain Karl Mayr, the officer in charge of the Reichswehr News and Enlightenment Department in Munich. Mayr referred him to Hitler, who had distinguished himself in the above­mentioned course by the vehemence of his radical nationalist and antisemitic views, and by his oratorical talents. Hitler was already feeling his way toward a political career; four days before responding to Gemlich in the letter translated below, he had paid his first visit to the German Workers’ Party (eventually renamed, the National Socialist Workers’ Party) as a confidential agent of the Reichswehr.

The full original text (in German, errors in spelling and grammar deliberately reproduced) can be read here, while the Jewish Virtual Library offers an English translation by Richard Levy. Hitler (y”sh) is at pains to project himself as a “rational”, “thinking” antisemite rather than a mere judeophobic demagogue. The moneygraf of the letter is this (I will quote both the German original and Levy’s translation):

Und daraus ergibt sich folgendes: Der Antisemitismus aus rein gefühlsmäßigen Gründen wird seinen letzten Ausdruck finden in der Form von Progromen. Der Antisemitismus der Vernunft jedoch muss führen zur planmässigen gesetzlichen Bekämpfung und Beseitigung der Vorrechte des Juden die er zum Unterschied der anderen zwischen uns lebenden Fremden besitzt. (Fremdengesetzgebung). Sein letztes Ziel aber muss unverrückbar die Entfernung der Juden überhaupt sein.

[Translation:] The deduction from all this is the following: an antisemitism based on purely emotional grounds will find its ultimate expression in the form of the pogrom.[1] An antisemitism based on reason, however, must lead to systematic legal combating and elimination of the privileges of the Jews, that which distinguishes the Jews from the other aliens who live among us (an Aliens Law). The ultimate objective [of such legislation] must, however, be the irrevocable removal of the Jews in general.

The key term is “Entfernung”, which literally can be taken to mean “removal” or “dislodgement”, but for which the premier online German dictionary Leo also lists the following meanings: “excision, ablation [medical]”, “ejection”, “elimination”. (The Dutch cognate of “Entfernung”, “verwijdering”, has the same multiple meanings.) It is argued here (presumably quoting Eberhard Jäckel), as well as by Christopher Browning, that in context, the term was probably still referring to segregation or expulsion rather than genocide. But it is hardly a stretch to argue that precisely that was indeed meant as the ultimate goal, and hardly a coincidence that this quote is prominently displayed at the Wannsee Conference House (presently a Holocaust museum and memorial site).

In any case, “functionalist” and “intentionalist” historians will each see confirmation of their preconceived views. I myself side with the late lamented dean of Shoah historians, Raul Hilberg:”I have never begun by asking the big questions, because I was always afraid that I would come up with small answers.”

Addendum: I forgot to mention (as explained in the NYT article on the SWC website) that the letter’s signature was declared genuine by the same handwriting expert who unmasked the forged “Hitler diaries”.

Bibi gives 0bama a Mideast history lesson (video)

Must-see (via Gateway Pundit):

On the other hand, Walter Russell Mead analyzes the non-Israel parts of 0bama’s speech, and says he’s (however reluctantly) embracing the Bush doctrine. (Here is a roundup of more reactions.)

Just minutes ago I got an Email from a Washington acquaintance (and Jewish 0bama supporter) who appears to be even more confused than I am. Is 0bama really throwing Israel under the bus, or did he seriously think he could bully Netanyahu (no slouch at dirty politics himself) into doing his bidding? Or do both sides know that a return to 1967 borders (read: pre-Six Day War borders, since I assume for Israel to reoccupy the Sinai is not the idea ;-)) is not realistic, but staged the disagreement just for show?

In any case, Netanyahu, whatever my misgivings about him as an actual leader are, has always been an impressive spokesman for his people, and together put in possibly the best performance of his career. Without benefit of teleprompters, may I add.

0bama’s intellectual shallowness

Instapundit:

DON’T KNOW MUCH ABOUT HISTORY: Obama: “Texas has always been a pretty Republican state, for, you know, historic reasons.”

Apparently, when Obama taught Constitutional Law he never got around to teaching the Texas White (Democratic) Primary cases. Or talking about which side was which in the Civil War . . . .

Updated to make clear to people who don’t click the link that it was the Texas Democrats who excluded black voters (and Mexican-Americans) from their primaries (and then dodged further with the Jaybird Democratic Association when the courts struck down the White Primaries). This is a major set of cases under state action, and I’m surprised that Obama is unfamiliar with this history. I wonder what he covered in his Constitutional Law classes?

Remember, guys, this clown was sold to us as an “intellectual” unlike the “stupid” Bush. His followers even claimed he was a constitutional law professor at U. of Chicago, when in fact he was a mere adjunct lecturer and never had regular faculty status. (This is not surprising in light of an essentially nonexistent scholarly publication list.) The blogprof has more on 0bama’s academic (non)career, and Doug Ross claims to have gotten off-the-record comments from a senior law prof at U. of Chicago that put 0bama’s time there in an unflattering light to say the least.

But I leave the last word to Powerline:

Barack Obama is a creature of the modern university and therefore an amazingly shallow man. I have written about his historical howlers in the New York Post column “Anti-terror oops,” in the Weekly Standard column “The Kennedy-Khrushchev conference for dummies,” and in the Power Line post “Obama veers into the Daily Ditch.”

Obama’s historical ignorance could be a full time beat for somebody who does this work for a living, and it tells us something truly important about Barack Obama. His ignorance is as broad as it is deep. Not that you couldn’t deduce that on your own from his performance on the job.

Yesterday he was at it again, in his peevish interview with the feisty local broadcast reporter from Texas. Why are you so unpopular in Texas? the reporter asked. Obama being Obama, he was unable to laugh off the question and say he’d do better next time around. Obama responded: “Texas has always been a pretty Republican state, for, you know, historic reasons.”

Has the guy ever heard of LBJ? You know, the fellow who first brought us socialized medicine? Has he ever read a single volume of Robert Caro’s monumental biography of LBJ? It’s hard to miss the extent to which the Democratic Party dominated Texas politics for the duration of LBJ’s (long) political career.

Obama majored in political science at Columbia. Did he miss the fact that Texas was part of the solidly Democratic South — the slaveholding, segregated, Jim Crow South — more or less from statehood in 1845 until Nixon’s 1972 landslide?

Did Obama skip class the day he might have learned that in the the postbellum South, including Texas, the Republican Party was virtually nonexistent? Apparently so. Or maybe he was just deploying his skills as a bs artist to deflect a question that could not be reconciled with his self-worship.

JOHN adds: I’ve concluded that Obama isn’t a smart person. He just plays one on television.

Ouch.

Contrast and compare: Tax Day Tea Party in San Francisco (!) vs. “US Uncut”

Zombie has a great photo-reportage up comparing and contrasting two demos in San Francisco (of all places): A sizable, enthusiastic Tea Party rally (in just about the least likely/friendly place for it) and an event by US Uncut that drew a whopping… 45 people and was clearly astroturfed.(Still a succcess compared with the joint event with the “Coffee Party” elsewhere, which drew 20 people.)

Get thee over there. I cannot do the essay justice by selective quoting.

The Tea Party rally was attended by one offensive troll which was clearly identified by “Infiltrator” signs. Guess who was interviewed by the OTMSM media scribbler in attendance?

Today in history: April 19, 1943: start of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising

Passover is the day when Jews celebrate their release from Pharaoh’s bondage in Egypt. There have been many more Pharaohs in later history, and the most infamous of them had a habit of carrying out “Aktione” on Jewish holidays in order to capture the maximum number of Jews at synagogue or the home (out of hiding).

Today is the 1st day of Passover (15 Nisan on the Jewish calendar). Exactly 67 years ago on the secular calendar (19 April 1943), and exactly as many years plus one day ago on the Hebrew calendar (14 Nisan 5703), the Nazis (y”sh) has planned a major “Aktion” to empty out what was left of the Warsaw Ghetto. To their surprise, they were suddenly faced with an armed revolt: The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising had begun. Below are two videoclips about it:

As we face new Pharaohs — aided and abetted by self-described “progressives” who seem to find common cause with the most reactionary forces imaginable — let me share with you a song by David Draiman (the Jewish frontman of heavy metal band Disturbed) about precisely this.

Have a wonderful Passover. And NEVER AGAIN indeed.

Dutch mall shooting claims 7 dead, 16 wounded

At a Dutch shopping mall at the Amsterdam suburb of Alphen on the Rhine (Alphen aan de Rijn), a shooter killed 7 and wounded 16 before turning the gun on himself. (See, e.g., CNN via multiple sources on Twitter.)

And that’s despite gun control laws that are outright draconian by US standards.

According to the liveblog at Dutch daily NRC Handelsblad (in Dutch), the shooter was a native Dutchman age 24. He was a member of a shooting club, held permits for five guns, and owned three. It is not clear if the weapon he used (which sounds like a submachine gun from the vague descriptions) was one of the licensed ones. Despite earlier claims, he does not appear to have been ex-military.

His mother found a suicide note. He had previously been the subject of a police inquiry (no details given) but the case was dismissed. More here (likewise in Dutch). Another note supposedly claimed that bombs had been left at three malls: these had been evacuated but no bombs were found.

Innumeracy and wordsmith “intellectuals”

Insty today hit a raw nerve:

TAXING THE RICH: The math just doesn’t work. But as we’ve seen, Obama and the dems seem deep in the grip of innumeracy — or, alternatively, they hope the voters are.

It goes further than just the 0bama administration. In the circles of “wordsmith” intellectuals, who live or die by their pen, articulateness is all too often confused with intelligence. When one engages some of these people (say, J’ism school grads) in discussion on nonverbal subjects — including totally apolitical ones — one often encounters astonishingly limited minds in the numerical (and, to a lesser extent visuospatial) realm. The word “innumeracy” is only a mild poetic exaggeration in many cases, and dead-on accurate in some others. A school and college system that increasingly allows pupils/students to avoid grappling with math and science only makes things worse.

 

On fiscal crisis denialism

It is quite amazing, really. People like myself are being called “global warming deniers” and told we are the moral equivalent of Shoah deniers for having some skepticism over the catastrophic AGW scenario and being opposed to making sweeping changes in the economy and society to avert a far-off, uncertain threat predicted by opaque computer models.

Yet these same people have their heads completely buried in the sand about a clear, present, and imminent  fiscal crisis which can be understood by anybody who has ever had to balance a budget. And anybody trying to make even baby steps to do something about that problem is immediately accused of wanting to starve seniors, making the poor eat dog and cat food,… and other blatant ploys of emotional blackmail.

Of course, in the latter case, the New Class/government class would lose out on both jobs and patronage if solutions were implemented, while in the former case, implementation of the “solution” would entail a vast increase of government/regulatory jobs for themselves, patronage for their mascots/electoral cannon fodder, and power & control over all of us. Coincidence? I didn’t think so either.

 

Richard Goldstone retracts Israel genocide accusation after damage done

Jeffrey Goldberg in The Atlantic reports that Richard Goldstone has retracted his accusations against Israel (emphases mine):

This is as shocking as it is unexpected: the South African Jewish judge Richard Goldstone, who excoriated Israel for allegedly committing premeditated crimes against civilians in Gaza — contributing, more than any other individual, to the delegitimization and demonization of the Jewish state —  now says, well, Israel didn’t actually set out to target Palestinian civilians, unllike Hamas, whose plainly-apparent goal was to murder Israeli civilians.

It is not clear, reading Goldstone’s mea culpa in The Washington Post, that he fully understands the consequences of his work:

Our report found evidence of potential war crimes and “possibly crimes against humanity” by both Israel and Hamas. That the crimes allegedly committed by Hamas were intentional goes without saying — its rockets were purposefully and indiscriminately aimed at civilian targets.

The allegations of intentionality by Israel were based on the deaths of and injuries to civilians in situations where our fact-finding mission had no evidence on which to draw any other reasonable conclusion. While the investigations published by the Israeli military and recognized in the U.N. committee’s report have established the validity of some incidents that we investigated in cases involving individual soldiers, they also indicate that civilians were not intentionally targeted [by Israel] as a matter of policy.

Well, I’m glad he’s cleared that up. Unfortunately, it is somewhat difficult to retract a blood libel, once it has been broadcast across the world.

This is, indeed, roughly the judicial equivalent of the New York Times making an outrageous accusation on the front page above the fold, then running a correction/retraction on page A20 months later. The damage is done and can never be wholly undone.

His retraction now may be rank opportunism or the beginning of teshuvah (repentance). Repentance (as Jews understand the concept) has three steps (actually four): (1) recognizing the transgression or iniquity; (2a) expressing remorse and (2b) trying to undo the damage insofar as possible; (3) taking steps to ensure it can never happen again. If Goldstone’s step is genuine, it is only a baby step and it now falls upon him to go out and speak everywhere with a loud, clear voice.

United Steel Workers defending Koch Brothers?!

This rates as the flying pig moment of the day. While the (doctrinaire libertarian, not conservative) Koch Brothers have become the bugbear of the left in general and of the unions in particular, Red State’s Labor Union Report reports a defense of the Georgia-Pacific owners from a very unlikely source: Jon Geenen, VP of the United Steelworkers union.

In a post entitled A Well Intentioned Bad Idea on the union’s website, Geenen points out that, among other things:

  • while he does not defend the Koch brothers’s political positions, these are hardly news, as they have been at this for 40 years (continuing the anti-Communist activism of their father who learned first-hand what Communism was like, trying to run a factory in the former Soviet Union)
  • their plants are actually highly unionized, they pay their many employees very well, and management and unions have traditionally had a very good relationship
  • they are among the few major employers in manufacturing that actually choose to create and maintain jobs in the USA rather than outsource them overseas
  • as the company is privately held and there are no stockholders to frighten, a boycott would be a pointless exercise in self-gratification at best (which, of course, I increasingly suspect to be the true essence of left-liberalism)

Go read the whole thing. Keep in mind, of course, that Geenen represents the dwindling private sector unions, and takes a position at variance with other unions that primarily represent government and quasigovernmental employees. Outside the USA as well their positions are not always in lockstep.

Blog plug: Raising Asperger’s Kids

And now for something completely different:

One of my tweeple, aspergers2mom, runs a very interesting blog about her experiences raising two sons with Asperger Syndrome. If you have children or relatives with AS, autism, ADD/ADHD, or PDD-NOS (pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified), you will find a lot of good stuff there. And if you have friends/significant others who just drive you up the wall with their geekishness, the blog may also be helpful: the line between a real serious geek and a mild AS case is quite blurry. (Like with many things psychological, the difference between a personality trait and a personality disorder — or an intellectual idiosyncrasy and a developmental disorder — is mostly a matter of degree rather than kind.)

Check out today’s post especially. Thanks so much for sharing, Elise.

Pink Floyd in Venice, “Comfortably numb”

Pending some time to blog, here is a music video from a huge open-air concert Pink Floyd played in Venice in 1989. The video was captured from a TV broadcast (which I saw at the time)

One of the songs played was the classic “Comfortably numb” (from The Wall). The sound quality of the video doesn’t do it justice, but David Gilmour’s heart-rending guitar solo starting at 4:53 literally had me in tears the first time I heard it. The song is, in a way, about being trapped in a prison of one’s own making, and Gilmour chillingly evokes precisely that. There are players with much stronger or versatile technique, but at his own game, Gilmour is in a class of his own. (Here is the solo by itself, although it really needs the song to set the mood. And here is a rare version featuring David Bowie as the guest singer.)

WordPress iPad view stinks

I am an avid iPad user (as my computers are generally taken over for work when I am near them at all) and am all for making website iPad-compatible. However, the latest trend in making sites iPad-friendly — i.e., have cutesy iPad app-like views when logging in from iPads — is one I could do without. WordPress yesterday suddenly rolled one out that clearly wasn’t all kosher — as I learned to my chagrin when trying to type long comments on the iPad, which appeared to be posted but were in fact sucked down /dev/null.

I have therefore temporarily turned on comment moderation until I have a workaround or can spend more than two minutes at a non-work computer. And to the WordPress crew: you’ve got a great product, but remember Voltaire’s saying “le meilleur est l’ennemi du bien” (perfection is the enemy of goodness). A saying that various social engineers and crusaders for cosmic justice would do well to take to heart.

Unsung hero of the week: Hideaki Akaiwa

This man’s actions would make for a nice action movie script. but they are for real. See also here (via Insty).

Akaiwa said he was at work a few miles away when the tsunami hit, and he rushed back to find his neighborhood inundated with up to 10 feet of water. Not willing to wait until the government or any international organization did, or did not, arrive to rescue his wife of two decades — whom he had met while they were surfing in a local bay — Akaiwa got hold of some scuba gear. He then hit the water, wended his way through the debris and underwater hazards and managed to reach his house, from which he dragged his wife to safety.

“The water felt very cold, dark and scary,” he recalled. “I had to swim about 200 yards to her, which was quite difficult with all the floating wreckage.”

With his mother still unaccounted for several days later, Akaiwa stewed with frustration as he watched the water recede by only a foot or two. He repeatedly searched for her at City Hall and nearby evacuation centers.

Finally, on Tuesday, he waded through neck-deep water, searching the neighborhood where she’d last been seen. He found her, he said, on the second floor of a flooded house where she’d been waiting for help for four days.

“She was very much panicked because she was trapped with all this water around,” Akaiwa said. “I didn’t know where she was. It was such a relief to find her.”

 

WOW: no country effectively “soaks the rich” more than… the USA?!

Tax law professor Paul Caron has some eye-opening data on his blog.

You see, high marginal personal income tax rates are one thing: but “soaking the rich” in this manner, regardless of whether or not this is moral, is a mere exercise in intellectual self-gratification unless it actually brings in more revenue. As a rule, “the rich” have much more access to (legal) tax evasion/tax exposure minimization tools and techniques than the average citizen — quite aside from the fact that an overtaxed rich person may simply decide to voluntarily reduce his income and enjoy more leisure time (“going Galt”).

A more objective measure for how much any given country “soaks the rich” or “leans on the rich” would be how great the share they contribute to total tax revenue is relative to their share of total earnings. The study quoted by Dr. Caron considers the top decile (to 10% earners), across the OECD. (Israel is not on the list as it was only just admitted to the OECD.)

On average, across the OECD, the top decile (top 10% earners) bring in 28.4% of all income, and contribute 31.6% of all tax revenue. 31.6/28.4 yields what I might call a “revenue contribution coefficient” (RCC) of 1.11, where values below 1.0 would represent a windfall to the “rich”, values above 1.0 would represent “leaning” on them, and 1.0 would be neutral.

Now admittedly, in the USA, the top decile earns 35.1% of all income (considerably higher than the OECD average), but they also contribute… 45.1% of all tax revenue. This leads to an RCC of 45.1/35.1=1.35, the very highest in the OECD. Australia (RCC=1.28) and the Netherlands (RCC=1.25) come 2nd and 3rd in the OECD, respectively, while, surprisingly, famously “high-tax” Belgium, Sweden, and Norway all have RCCs below one!

The real world is rather different from economic fantasyland.

Happy J. S. Bach Day!

Today, the first day of spring and (roughly) the vernal equinox, J. S. Bach would have been 326 if he still were alive. His body is gone, but his music lives on forever. “Bach is the beginning and end of all music” (Max Reger; more quotes about Bach here).

Bach was an avid experimenter with the musical technology of his day, and I’m sure he’d appreciate modern synthesizers. Below are two performance of one of his organ fugues (in G major, BWV 577, nicknamed “the jig” as it is in a jig/gigue rhythm): one on a conventional pipe organ, another on a battery of synthesizers.

Enjoy!

Jerry Pournelle on Japanese nuclear disaster

I have been too busy in real life to do more than post links to my twitter feed over the last week or so, and reports from Japan about the nuclear incident following the tragic earthquake (thus far the 5th most intense in documented history) and resulting tsunami were too conflicting and sensationalist to write about. Let me however give the word to the inimitable Jerry Pournelle (on what is arguably the original weblog, now in its 666th week):

We are now down to an absolute worst case of two Tsar Bomba fallout equivalent from the Fukushima Daiichi disaster. Note that we are talking about fallout only: there is no danger whatever of an actual nuclear explosion. The media are breathlessly telling of a nuclear cloud approaching the United States. NPR proclaims that no nukes is good nukes. The Union of Concerned Scientists will cheerfully furnish you with as gloomy a forecast as you’d like whether you ask for their view or not.

In fact the situation is slowly coming under control. Fukushima Daiichi sits on the coast amidst a scene of almost unimaginable destruction, in freezing weather, with high winds. Every road, water pipe, and power line is gone. Debris litters the passageways to the plant. Fukushima Daiichi was protected by a 20 foot sea wall. Most of the surrounding countryside wasn’t protected by a sea wall at all.

At reactor four the fuel rods were in a spent fuel pond: the reactor was shut down in December. The pond was on the roof of the reactor building, which seemed like a good idea at the time, and could withstand an 8.0 quake, and being on the roof had a really short path from the reactor to the storage pond. All was well, until the quake cracked the pool wall. Well, that’s all right, we pump in water. Only there’s no power because the reactors scrammed at the first large tremor. That’s all right, the diesels kick in and the water pumps start up. Only now there’s a tsunami. Well, that’s all right, there’s a twenty foot sea wall. Only the tsunami is 23 feet, and maybe there has been some subsidence of the land level due to the quake. Water rushes into the complex. Back at reactor 4: the water is flowing out of the spent fuel rod pool. The rods stand on end, 14 feet tall, with about 40 feet of water in the pool. The water is flowing out. Everyone is worrying more about the three reactors which are scrammed but which still contain the fuel rods. Those rods are really hot: they are full of just created fission products, some with half lives in minutes to hours so producing a lot of heat. Over in four all the really hot stuff — fission products — has decayed out. But the water is leaking. Temperatures are going up.

At some point the water in the four tank boils furiously near the zirconium rod containers. Superhot steam plus zirconium metal produces very fast rusting. This is also known as oxidation. Rapid oxidation is often called burning. The oxygen in the water is stripped off to become zirconium oxide. That leaves hydrogen (contaminated with some tritium since we still have neutrons and beta products coming from the radioactive decay of the fission byproducts). Hydrogen gets out into the room enclosing the spent fuel pool. It mixes with oxygen from the outside. It ignites. There is an explosion that blows off the roof of the rooftop spent fuel enclosure building. Water continues to leak from the pool.

The remedy is to get water into that pool, but we still don’t have much power for pumps, nor water supply, because we are still surrounded by devastation, and we still have the problem of the reactors that have just been scrammed and are really really hot because they have recently created fission products in them.

But we can call in helicopters to drop water into the now-exposed pool.  That ought to work only there is a 20 knot wind, so not all the water dropped can get into the pool, and much goes downwind in a televisible display plume.

And there we are. The good news is that the wind is blowing the results out to sea. The bad news is that a plume hundreds of miles long develops and in that plume are detectable — not dangerous but detectable — levels of radiation, and out there away from the destruction, not hampered by the devastation of the earthquake and tsunami, are a lot of  news people desperate for a story, and —   I leave the rest as an exercise for the reader. Detectible soon becomes potentially dangerous levels, and it’s hundreds and hundreds of miles, and a Union of Concerned Scientists expert will now tell you about it all.

I can’t say that this won’t be worse than Chernobyl, but so far we have no stories whatever of anyone off the plant site injured, which makes this a TMI story, not a Chernobyl story. And that’s the way things are at Noon on Thursday as best I can tell. Here’s the headline:

Japan nuclear crisis deepens as radiation keeps crews at bay

Race is on to restart cooling systems with emergency power after dropping water on damaged reactors has little effect

To the best of my knowledge the Japanese crews are winning the race. This will end up worse than TMI because many of those in the plant will be injured, and some may be killed: I understand that some workers have voluntarily exceeded their annual badge limits and by a lot because they thought their work was critical. At TMI there were no off site injuries, and the worst to the workers was that they exceeded their badge limits and were sent away. At Daiichi there have so far been no off site injuries, but some to many of the plant workers have exceeded their badge limits. In addition six or more have mechanical injuries, some from the hydrogen explosions, one from a heart attack. Pray for them.

Indeed. Jerry puts in a well-deserved plug to the MIT Nuclear Information Hub. weblog, which is now frequently updated with lots of relevant info. Get thee over there.

And just to give some perspective on the scale of the disaster caused by the tsunami, have a look at this video sent to me by Mrs. F2. At first the combination of new agey background music and what deceptively seems like shots of a peaceful tide rolling will throw you off, but as the images zoom in the devastation is revealed for what it is, and the continuing background music creates a chilling, Lalo Shifrin-esque emotional counterpoint.

 

NPR director caught showing true colors in sting operation

Unbelievable. James O’Keefe’s latest sting, he set up a fake Muslim Brotherhood front group, and had somebody posing as one of its directory approach senior exec Ron Schiller of NPR (National Public Radio, a.k.a. New-class Preening Radio). Video can be seen here.

A man who appears to be a National Public Radio senior executive, Ron Schiller [no relation to CEO Vivian Schiller], has been captured on camera savaging conservatives and the Tea Party movement.

“The current Republican Party, particularly the Tea Party, is fanatically involved in people’s personal lives and very fundamental Christian – I wouldn’t even call it Christian. It’s this weird evangelical kind of move,” declared Schiller, the head of NPR’s nonprofit foundation, who last week announced his departure for the Aspen Institute.

In a new video released Tuesday morning by conservative filmmaker James O’Keefe, Schiller and Betsy Liley, NPR’s director of institutional giving, are seen meeting with two men who, unbeknownst to the NPR executives, are posing as members of a Muslim Brotherhood front group. The men, who identified themselves as Ibrahim Kasaam and Amir Malik from the fictitious Muslim Education Action Center (MEAC) Trust, met with Schiller and Liley at Café Milano, a well-known Georgetown restaurant, and explained their desire to give up to $5 million to NPR because, “the Zionist coverage is quite substantial elsewhere.”

On the tapes, Schiller wastes little time before attacking conservatives. The Republican Party, Schiller says, has been “hijacked by this group.” The man posing as Malik finishes the sentence by adding, “the radical, racist, Islamaphobic, Tea Party people.” Schiller agrees and intensifies the criticism, saying that the Tea Party people aren’t “just Islamaphobic, but really xenophobic, I mean basically they are, they believe in sort of white, middle-America gun-toting. I mean, it’s scary. They’re seriously racist, racist people.”

[…] Schiller doesn’t blink [when the interlocutor “reveals” his ties to the Muslim Brotherhood]. Instead, he assumes the role of fan. “I think what we all believe is if we don’t have Muslim voices in our schools, on the air,” Schiller says, “it’s the same thing we faced as a nation when we didn’t have female voices.”

When O’Keefe’s two associates pressed him into the topic, Schiller decried U.S. media coverage of Egypt’s uprising against former dictator Hosni Mubarak, especially talk of the Muslim Brotherhood’s influence on the protests and future of Egypt. Schiller said that is what he is “most disappointed by in this country, which is that the educated, so-called elite in this country is too small a percentage of the population, so that you have this very large un-educated part of the population that carries these ideas.”

When the man pretending to be Kasaam suggests to Schiller that “Jews do kind of control the media or, I mean, certainly the Zionists and the people who have the interests in swaying media coverage toward a favorable direction of Israel,” Schiller does not rebut him or stop eating. He just nods his head slightly.

The man posing as Kasaam then joked that his friends call NPR, “National Palestinian Radio,” because, according to him, NPR is the only media outlet that covers Palestinians’ perspective. Schiller laughed.

When the ersatz Islamists declare they’re “not too upset about maybe a little bit less Jew influence of money into NPR,” Schiller responds by saying he doesn’t find “Zionist or pro-Israel” ideas at NPR, “even among funders. I mean it’s there in those who own newspapers, obviously, but no one owns NPR.”

Response in the blogosphere to Ron Schiller being caught shilling on camera, predictably, fast and furious. (H/t to Insty for most links.)

  • Roger Simon on Pajamas Media: The Protocols Of The Elders of NPR. “What this video reveals most of all is the cultural and ideological ignorance of modern liberalism.”
  • Claire Berllinski on Ricochet: The Utter, Craven Ignominy of NPR. “I cannot believe this. I can’t believe what I just read and watched.” Neither can I — if this had been a scene in a novcl I was writing I would have thrown it out as too cartoonish. ” . . . I would say I’m at a loss for words, but I’m not lost for them at all. They’re right on the tip of my tongue. I just can’t use them on Ricochet.”
  • Byron York at National Review: GOP leader amazed at ‘condescension and arrogance’ in NPR video, calls on Dems to support defunding. As one who routinely spends time among NPR types and often sees depressing displays of patronizing gentryism/elitism, I am amazed that he is even surprised.
  • NPR “Appalled” By Executive’s Comments.“I am shocked, shocked, to hear that gambling is going on in this establishment.” Or in case the revulsion is genuine, NPR should look at the “root cause” (as they are fond of lecturing us to do). In this case, the echo chamber created by New Class liberal groupthink in which ideas such as those expressed are not even exceptional.
  • UPDATE: ZOA calls upon Jews to write to their congressmen to defund NPR.
  • UPDATE: House majority leader Eric Cantor : “As we continue to identify ways to cut spending and save valuable resources, this disturbing video makes clear that taxpayer dollars should no longer be appropriated to NPR […] At a time when our government borrows 40 cents of every dollar that it spends, we must find ways to cut spending and live within our means […] This video [in which Schiller was also heard saying that NPR does not need public funding, Ed.] clearly highlights the fact that public broadcasting doesn’t need taxpayer funding to thrive, and I hope that admission will lead to a bipartisan consensus to end these unnecessary federal subsidies.”
  • UPDATE 2: Ed Driscoll weighs in, and singles out a pathetic attempt at damage control.
  • UPDATE 3: the Shiller also said he was proud of the way their token black commentator Juan Williams had been fired, which is not what NPR has been saying to the outside world. Williams himself, now enjoying a comfortable perch at “intolerant” archrival Fox News despite his conventionally liberal views, can barely contain his schadenfreude: “They prostitute themselves for money”. Tonight on Fox at 9 PM Eastern.

I will leave the last word to Roger Simon:

Is the explanation for this, as some have suggested, that they were just trying to raise funds at any cost? That journalistic trope goes pretty thin. I will suggest another explanation:[…] Lost in a delusional world of political correctness, the elders of NPR have forfeited the ability to think critically. They simply can’t see the facts anymore — or don’t care to. It’s too threatening to their limited weltanschauung. Hence, you get idiotic projections such as Schiller’s statement of how dumb Republicans are and how what America needs is more educated elites.

That they all sat there through the worst kind of anti-Semitic bilge that would make even George Soros and Pat Buchanan blush is as predictable as it is sickening.

What is needed now is not just the defunding of NPR, but also its marginalization. And one of the best ways to marginalize is through well-deserved ridicule. The authors of this video at Project Veritas are thus greatly to be praised. Yes, what they have done is a form of entrapment, but the fools who were trapped deserve it as much as any knave in a Moliere play. NPR and its clones are the true reactionaries of our time. They are no more liberal than Boss Tweed. Taking off their masks is a public service.