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Weimar America

Something eerie, something creepy, is happening in the world—and now in America as well. The dark mood is brought on by elite universities, the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion industry, and massive immigration from illiberal nations and anti-Enlightenment societies.

At Hillcrest High School in Queens, New York, hundreds of students rioted on news that a single teacher in her private social media account had expressed support for Israel. Waving Palestinian flags, and screaming violent threats, the student mob rioted, destroyed school property, sought the teacher out and tried to crash into her classroom—before she was saved from violence by other teachers and an eventual police arrival.

The subtext was that the overwhelmingly minority students (whose school is ranked academically near the bottom among New York City schools) were acculturated to the racist reality that as the “oppressed” they were exempt from any punishment for hunting down their own teacher. As a Jewish (and thus white) “oppressive” supporter of Israel, she was reduced to, in the words an enthusiastic commenter on a Tik Tok video of the riot, a “cracker ass bitch.” And so the student pack tracked her down as if they were hunting an animal. The old Nazi youth gangs tried to kill Jews because they were not considered “white;” our new Nazis hunt them down because they allege that they are. The common denominator between the 1930s and 2023 is an unhinged hatred of Jews.

Hundreds of such incidents are now occurring on a daily basis—as the country is leaving its Weimar phase and heading at warp speed into normalizing Jew-hatred and worse. Instructors singled out Jewish students in classes at UC Davis and Stanford. Pro-Hamas students ripped down posters, swarmed public buildings, and disrupted traffic.

A pro-Israeli demonstrator in Los Angeles was hit on the head and killed by a pro-Palestinian university professor.

Jewish students were trapped in a Cooper Union university library surrounded by pro-Hamas demonstrators. At MIT, Jewish students were warned to keep away from particular areas of the campus deemed dangerous for them.

What would happen to a university president who warned black or Latino students to keep clear of areas where she could not guarantee their safety from other students?

A bankrupt media deserves much of the blame. They daily broadcast Hamas’s suspect casualty figures, as if that terrorist organization has ever been capable of speaking the truth.

The Western news regurgitated “500 dead at a Gaza hospital,” due to a supposedly deliberate Israel bombing. In fact, the hospital parking lot was hit by an errant Islamic Jihad missile intended to kill civilians in Israel.

No matter—few reporters apologized for spreading Hamas-fed misinformation, despite the previous Hamas lies that they never harmed civilians, that tunnels were not beneath hospital grounds, that they did not murder 1,200 Israelis; or their lies that Hamas gunmen do not rape, when they engaged in mass rape on October 7.

The media normalizes Hamas’s atrocities by treating it as if it were an ordinary government, not a murderous terrorist clique that decapitates civilians, takes children as hostages, and mutilates those it slaughters. That the terrorist organization has kidnapped at least ten American citizens and killed perhaps another 31 is lost on the “journalists,” many of them Americans who could care less about the fate of their fellow citizens.

The media fixates on the Israeli response to mass murder, but rarely the mass murder of 1,200 Israeli civilians that prompted the current war. During ceasefires do Israeli terrorists drive into Gaza cities, and shoot and kill innocent civilians—and then brag, as did Hamas recently, that such murdering will only increase?

Sometimes the anti-Semitic hatred reaches Orwellian levels of absurdity. A British reporter asked an Israeli official whether his country valued life less than Hamas did because it had agreed to Hamas’s demand to release three convicted terrorists in exchange for one Israeli captive. The media fawned over a released disfigured Gazan terrorist—without mentioning that her injuries came from a car bomb she exploded in hopes of killing Jews.

The media is further emboldened by the Biden administration. When asked about the outbreak of anti-Semitism across the U.S.—nearly 60 percent of hate crimes are committed against Jews, who make up 2.5 percent of the population—Biden Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre dismissed them with the false claim that the White House “had not seen any credible threats” to Jews. And then she claimed that the real danger to American residents was Islamophobia and threats to Arab-Americans. Hate crime and interracial crime statistics do not support Jean-Pierre’s assertions, which prompts the question of why she made them in the first place.

Note that almost all the violence in demonstrations over the current war comes from the pro-Hamas side that shouts “river to the sea” genocidal threats, swarms the Capitol rotunda and the White House wall, disrupts traffic, occupies bridges at peak traffic, defaces private and public property, shouts down speakers on campus, harasses passers-by, and often battles the police. One wonders whether, should the U.S. military be forced to try to rescue American captives, the demonstrators would cheer for the American troops or Hamas hostage-takers.

Abroad, the world has gone even crazier.

The United Nations has appointed Iran—a theocratic, terrorist-supporting government that kills dissidents and takes hostages—as the chair nation of the UN Human Rights Council Social Forum. What a cruel joke.

But what would one expect from the UN when its secretary-general, António Manuel de Oliveira Guterres, a former Portuguese socialist politician, condemns the Israeli response to October 7, but rarely, if ever, the Hamas mass killing of civilians that prompted it. Right after the mass killing Guterres opined, “The attacks by Hamas did not happen in a vacuum.” According to the secretary-general’s logic, I suppose, Pearl Harbor, the 1939 Nazi invasion of Poland, and the Russian invasion of Ukraine did not happen in a vacuum either.

When told that an Irish citizen hostage was freed by Hamas, Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar declared that the “lost” child was finally “found.” In other words, he wished to hide the obvious fact that a terrorist organization had kidnapped an Irish citizen child, held her hostage for 50 days, and released her only when Israel gave up convicted terrorists to obtain her release.

Our domestic political leadership is not helping the situation.

Just days after October 7, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, along with the foreign minister of the now often hostile Turkish government, were calling for a cease-fire to prevent an Israeli response.

When the Islamic Jihad rocket aimed at Israeli cities went off course and damaged a Gaza hospital (leading to the fake story that Israel bombed the hospital), President Biden joked, “You got to learn to shoot straight.” Did Biden mean that, had the terrorists only launched a successful terrorist rocket into Jewish neighborhoods, there would have been no ensuing controversies?

Biden later apologized for doubting fatality figures provided by the Gaza Health Ministry, which is controlled by Hamas—a terrorist organization that has lied about the hospital “bombing,” denied it had tunnels under hospitals, denied that it had engaged in mass rape in Israel, and has supplied no proof of its civilian casualty numbers. Has Hamas released figures of how many of its terrorists were killed, and does it separate those numbers from lost “civilians?” And so are there really vast new cemeteries in Gaza to handle the 15,000 graves for those who, Hamas asserts, were killed?

What explains the collective madness?

For the last 40 years, while Western leftists have naively supported Palestinian terrorists, their governments have appeased terrorist-supporting Middle Eastern governments for very practical reasons. The old subtext to such mollification was that 500-million irate Arab Muslims, and a Middle East with 40 percent of the world’s oil reserves, in realist terms, simply argued against the interests of 10 million Israelis.

But now there are two new, venomous elements in the matrix.

One is that the racist DEI industry assumes that all intersectional nonwhite communities are victims of white privilege and supremacy. Therefore, as permanently oppressed, they are declared incapable of being racist themselves. And so they can harass with impunity the supposed victimizers—in this case American Jews, who are declared culpable whites.

So the oppressed, according to the DEI bible, cannot be anti-Semitic, though many certainly are. And they apparently cannot be held accountable for their hatred or frequent violence.

Secondly, in the last two decades there has been an epidemic of immigration into Western nations from the Middle East. In often-divided democracies like ours, politicians seek to appease as many pressure groups as possible, whether citizen voters or merely resident demonstrators, to acquire and maintain power.

Such pro-Hamas demonstrators, rah-rahing from a free, prosperous, and secure West, expect no rebuke for their obvious hypocrisy in cheering on an autocratic, dictatorial Hamas that has wrecked the economy of Gaza, shoots dissidents, and allows no free expression. And Middle Eastern guests and immigrants are never reminded that their very demonstrations are predicated on not being physically present in their homelands, where they might be shot for what they say and do freely in the West.

We are on a trajectory similar to that of 1930s Germany.

Every time a student is cornered, harassed, or threatened; a high school mob tries to swarm and harm a teacher; a government spokesperson dismisses such hatred; or American soldiers are targeted by Iranian-fed terrorist organizations; the madness, racism, and anti-Semitism will increase—until it reaches a saturation point of abject violence in our streets.

Once a society mainstreams the values of thuggish brownshirts, and ignores their “from the river to the sea” eliminationist chants and screams of “beat the f—king Jew,” then the next emboldened step is foreordained.

True, most Americans were appalled by October 7 and accept that every nation has the right to defend itself from terrorist killers. Most Americans deplore vicious demonstrators and their calls for violence on behalf of the Hamas death cult. And most Americans want their President to demand the release of American hostages and to deter Iranian-backed terrorists who attack U.S. military personnel in the region.

But unless the public demands that their universities enforce on campus the Bill of Rights and the right to move freely in safety, that police enforce laws against mob violence on America’s streets and in our schools, and that the United States stops greenlighting mass immigration from anti-Western nations and extending student visas to residents of anti-American, terrorist-supporting, and autocratic Middle East regimes, then in suicidal fashion we are headed for a 1930s nightmare.

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About Victor Davis Hanson

Victor Davis Hanson is a distinguished fellow of the Center for American Greatness and the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. He is an American military historian, columnist, a former classics professor, and scholar of ancient warfare. He has been a visiting professor at Hillsdale College since 2004, and is the 2023 Giles O'Malley Distinguished Visiting Professor at the School of Public Policy, Pepperdine University. Hanson was awarded the National Humanities Medal in 2007 by President George W. Bush, and the Bradley Prize in 2008. Hanson is also a farmer (growing almonds on a family farm in Selma, California) and a critic of social trends related to farming and agrarianism. He is the author of the just released New York Times best seller, The End of Everything: How Wars Descend into Annihilation, published by Basic Books on May 7, 2024, as well as the recent  The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won, The Case for Trump, and The Dying Citizen.

Photo: UNITED STATES -October 30: Noa Fay (C) a Jewish student currently enrolled at Columbia University is pictured speaking during press conference at the University Campus on October 30, 2023 to shed light on Columbia University failure to acknowledge and protect the Jewish students from acts of antisemitism. Accordingly to the students since Hamas attacked Israel on October 7, Jewish students at Columbia have been subjected to dozens of anti-Semitic incidents on campus, including violence. (Photo by Luiz C. Ribeiro for NY Daily News via Getty Images)

Notable Replies

  1. It would seem to me that what those who support such thuggish behavior actually want is a proportionate response or reaction to this mindless violence.

    Think Bernhard Goetz.

    What that would do is provide the left with the excuse to create a national police force, enact draconian gun laws and restrictions (gun registration, gun confiscation in some areas–as was done in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina–and so forth), and impose travel and movement restrictions. In some cases and locations, martial law.

    And, of course, it would accelerate the racialization of Amerika–just the way Big Mike and the queer Kenyan want it.

  2. Since their loss to Trump in 2016, you cannot exclude anything from the Left as irrational anymore. I don’t even call them Democrats anymore because that word is an oxymoron given their policies and obvious use of the mobs to impose their will in many areas. As was in Weimar Germany, the culture is rotten. The left there tried to provoke a takeover but were thwarted by the far right. What is different now in the USA - 100 years later - is that unlike Germany where the industrialists sided with the political right and so did the von Papens of the nation; the USA businesses are now siding with the far left and so are the Cheneys, Romneys, etc.

  3. Avatar for Alecto Alecto says:

    I suggest a companion piece authored by Selwyn Duke which readers will find at American Thinker today. Immigrationism preached by so many over the decades led to this situation. I cannot find an honest word or thought worth sharing in VDH or any of the current crop of fauxservative commentators who find so much to admire in the false god of endless immigration or the myth of “assimilation”. After all, who has challenged “Nation of Immigrants” propaganda? Certainly not VDH, who as recently as 2015 was suggesting we adopt yet another mass, fraudulent amnesty process for illegal aliens who had lived and worked in the U.S. without incident.

    Now look at us. We are inserted into every immigrant’s battle. We can no longer insist (on pain of deportation) either Jews or Muslims (or Christians for that matter) leave their border, culture or whatever disputes back home. We can no longer demand that citizens, immigrants and foreigners maintain the peace and surrender any other citizenship, demonstrating their commitment to this country and only this country. How many people warned about the vast increases in muslim immigration to the U.S. before and after 9/11? They were labeled “Islamophobic” a made-up word to keep the spigot open and our mouths shut. How many Americans do not want to involve themselves in Israel’s problems, yet mention this and it is labeled “anti-Semitic”.

    Calling that which occurs in public schools “education” is tantamount to calling the 1683 defeat of the Ottoman army “ethnic cleansing”. It is long past time to dismantle what is mistakenly referred to as “public” education. We all know this. If education accomplishes anything, or should, it is the perpetuation of one’s civilization. Whatever this system is, is not “education”. It is more an accommodation of foreign and very dangerous threats to our established civilization. Look away at your own peril.

  4. The German and Bavarian industrialists did not side with the right. National Socialism was a leftist, statist movement. While it’s true the National Socialists despised the German Communists and Communist Party, they were a hybrid of everything Marxism/Communism espoused with one key exception; the concept of property rights. The use and disposal of private capital is non-existent in Communist society as the means of production are owned collectively and administered by the state. Fascism, or in this case German National Socialism, retains private property ownership but its use and disposal is controlled by the state thereby effectively negating property rights. They were, and are, two sides of the same coin. In both cases, a monolithic, centralized government structure (totalitarian) is implemented and the individual is nothing more than a cog to be used in its machinery.

  5. I think I’ve read this article 100 time already on various conservative sites, yawn. A few thoughts:

    1. Being anti-Zionist is not antisemitic. In fact, there are Jews who are not supportive of Zionism and believe it to be a corruption of Judaism.
    2. “River to the Sea” = Genocide BS. It’s not. It does mean Jews would lose their Jewish nation that was placed on the heads of Arab Muslims by Western powers. The Zionists ethically cleansed 750k Arab Muslims from their homes in '48 - how can any sane person believe that Arab Muslims wanting to do the same to the Zionists is somehow immoral? The Zionists started this fight against 500 million Arab Muslim neighbors. How do you think it’s going to work out in the long run? Answer: Israel will be eliminated, it’s just a matter of time.
    3. Jews made Zionism about being Jewish - If they want to claim that opposing the Zionist political project in Palestine is genocide, then don’t complain when you’ve manufactured a lot of hate towards your people. I’m curious how any conservative would feel about this had the been living in Palestine in '48? Zionist terrorists and militants lay siege to your town and you are run off your property and from your home, only to then watch the Zionists take your property and move in. Via force. And the Zionists took more land than the U.N. partition granted them so the idea that any of what the Zionists did in '48 is legal is nonsense. But hey, I guess facts, reason and morality go out the window for conservatives when it comes to Israel.
    4. The kids are being taught the facts about Israel in college and elsewhere that conservatives want to ignore. How long can conservatism keep holding onto a position that is not based on facts or morality?

    If you ethnically cleanse people and occupy their lands and colonize their homeland, don’t be surprised when they cut your heads off and burn you and slaughter your civilians. The U.S. govt has slaughtered for more innocents over much less. Last. None of this means I want to support Hamas. I can never support any element of “Jihad” and Islam’s ongoing revolution and commitment to conquest. They disgust me.

    To the folks here and this author: Why do you ignore the facts of Zionism and what it did to the Arab Muslims living in Palestine? Why does their suffering matter less than Zionist political aims? Let’s dump both Zionists and Jihadis, k? Let them fight it out - the outcome is irrelevant to American interests.

    If you are an American Zionist, why not move to Israel? Join their fight for a nation. Have at it - but why does any American see this as our fight? Supporting the imposition of a religious state on Arab Muslim land? How in the hell is that a cause the U.S. should back?

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