dinsdag 2 februari 2010
By Ron Radosh
February 2nd, 2010 9:37 am
This week, an amazing and unprecedented interview will appear in the Egyptian newspaper, Almasry Alyoum. It is one of the leading Cairo newspapers, and has an average readership of 200,000 people. What the paper features is an interview with Jeffrey Herf, the University of Maryland historian, about his new and important book, Nazi Propaganda for the Arab World, published by Yale University Press.
The interview has already appeared online in English. Given the almost constant barrage of anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic propaganda throughout the Arab world, the Herf interview comes as a fresh antidote that will undoubtedly shock many Egyptians and cause great consternation. As the interviewer says to Herf, “Most Arab historians agree that the Nazis did not contribute great ideas that grew in the region, but you posit the opposite.” Herf tells him:
The absurd and false notion that an international Jewish conspiracy existed and was a major force in world politics was a key theme of Nazism’s wartime propaganda. Conspiratorial thinking focused on the supposed power of the Jews persisted after the war in the Middle East. The pejorative and hateful depictions of Jews in Nazi propaganda, the belief that they were inherently evil and that they should be punished as a result found echoes in the postwar publications of the Muslim Brotherhood, the writings of Sayyid Qutb, the postwar activities of Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Egyptian government’s propaganda under Nasser and in the Hamas Covenant of 1988.