Sunday, July 09, 2006

For whom shall I cheer?

France or Italy? Italy or France?

Frogs or fascists? Vichy or Vatican? Italy or France? For whom shall I cheer?

Dreyfus or Mortora? La Croix or Civiltà Cattolica?

La France Juive? L'Osservatore Romano?

For whom shall I cheer?

Louis IX of France? Or Pope Paul IV? The Roman ghetto? Or the French Veledrome?

For whom shall I cheer?


Fair is fair of course, so if I am going to list some of the negatives, I should also weigh the positives. Napolean tore down ghetto walls wherever he went, and he was a Frenchman. So were De Gaulle and Zola. And, Giuseppe Garibaldi, an Italian, personally led many of the military campaigns that finally robbed the Pope of temporal power bringing freedom to the Jews who lived in the Papal States.

Key words:
La Croix: The French Catholic newspaper which led the campiagn against Dreyfus. During the controversy the paper ran article after article accusing the Jews of fermenting revolution in France . The paper's response to Zola's J'Accuse was this: "Help, Help! Are we going to leave our beloved France in the hands of Jews?" At the announcment of the guily verdict at his first trial, Dreyfus called out Viva La France!. In the next day's edition La Croix called this act "the last kiss of Judas." The historian Stephen WIlson has called La Croix "the most important mouthpiece of Catholic anti-semitism."

Civiltà Cattolica: '' 'The Jews -- eternal insolent children, obstinate, dirty, thieves, liars, ignoramuses, pests and the scourge of those near and far . . . managed to lay their hands on . . . all public wealth . . . and virtually alone they took control not only of all the money . . . but of the law itself in those countries where they have been allowed to hold public offices . . . [yet they complain] at the first shout by anyone who dares raise his voice against this barbarian invasion by an enemy race, hostile to Christianity and to society in general.'' Those words appeared in 1880 in Civiltà Cattolica, the journal Pope Pius IX had ordered the Jesuits to publish in Rome as the informal organ of the Vatican -- every article was cleared before publication by the papal secretariat of state. The words were written by a founding editor of the paper, Giuseppe Oreglia, S.J., and were typical of Civiltà Cattolica, and Civiltà Cattolica itself was typical of Roman Catholic periodicals all over Europe in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

La France Juive: A best-selling book by the French (and Catholic) anti-Semite Edouard Drumont, in 1886, which reads like the thunderclap before the coming storm: "The Semite is money grubing, greedy, sly. The Aryan is enthusiastic, heroic, frank and trustfu. The Semite has a genious for eceiving his fellow man. The Aryan is farmer, poet, monk. The Semite can only live as a parasite in the middle of a civilization he has not made."

L'Osservatore Romano: The official Vatican newspaper, which did not publicize the destruction of Europe's Jews during the Holocaust, and helped pave the way for Hitler's crimes with hate-filled sentances such as this: "Jewry can no longer be excused or rehabilitated... If there is one nation with the right to turn to anti-Semtiism it is France, which first gave political rights to the Jews, and which was thus the first to prepare the way for their own servitude to them."

Louis IX of France: He ordered the Talmud burn in 1244 and is now revered as a Saint by the Catholic church.

Pope Paul IV: Created the Roman chetto in 1555 and ordered Jews to wear distinctive yellow hats (sound familiar?) He also introduced blood purity regulations into the Church (sound familiar?) and had the Talmud (and more than one Jew) burned in Rome. In Cum Nimis Absurdum, Pope Paul IV announced that Jews were "condemned to eternal slavery."

Roman Ghetto: The last one to be abolished in Western Europe. Mantained until the very last minute by Pope Pius IX (who also stole Jewish children, and called us dogs) as a sign of his power, until Gerebaldi finally forced him out.

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