Press "Enter" to skip to content

Gallery of Antisemitism – Example 20

The Holocaust: Holocaust inversion:

To see the whole Gallery of Antisemitism, visit

To contact us, visit

Lesley Klaff writes “What has been called ‘Holocaust Inversion’ involves an inversion of reality (the Israelis are cast as the ‘new’ Nazis and the Palestinians as the ‘new’ Jews), and an inversion of morality (the Holocaust is presented as a moral lesson for, or even a moral indictment of ‘the Jews’).”

Unless someone of Jewish origins has explicitly expressed admiration for Nazi ideology and practice, it is never acceptable to use the word ‘Nazi’ when referring to Jewish people, or make direct comparisons between Jews and Nazis. Other adjectives and epithets should used instead – the word ‘fascist’ can be perfectly acceptable when it is appropriate (as it occasionally is). This is because the central feature of Nazi ideology, one which Hitler himself passionately believed in, was that Jews were uniquely evil, were responsible for pretty much all the ills of the world, and must be singled out for special treatment (as in the Nazi Party’s original policy statement, which stated ‘no Jew to be a German’, a status not accorded to any other ethnic or religious minorities). Antisemitism’s centrality to Nazi ideology makes it distinct from other ideologies, even those with strong similarities such as, for example, Mussolini-style fascism.

It is not just inaccurate, but deeply hurtful and offensive to Jews to call them by the name of the Nazis who were responsible for decimating their population in the most horrible ways. It is very possible to find other, and very vehement words, to criticise the State of Israel’s actions towards the Palestinians, without needing to invoke the Holocaust or Nazis, or indeed to suggest, as in this first example, that Jews should have learned from the Holocaust and be better than others because they have suffered, but instead have become perpetrators. As Marlon Solomon has wryly remarked, the Holocaust was not a university.

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply