Letters to the Ledger Opinion

The Nazis’ ‘Night of Long Knives’ is being replayed in Israel

On Saturday, June 30th, 1934 Hitler’s SS began to attack and murder top officials of the German government. It was the first stage of what the Nazis proudly called “the night of the long knives.” Anyone could become a victim. One Willi Schmidt playing cello was mowed simply because he was confused with another of the same name.

Today on the streets and in the towns, buses and roads of Israel the same crazed violence is raging against Jews. Hooded Arab youth are loading guns, sharpening knives to cut short any Jewish life they encounter, be it that of a Torah scholar, a mother or a child.

The goal is simple and familiar: murder and intimidation.

The Nazis had the mad “grace” to call their operation in 1934 “Kolibri” (hummingbird). Today, a terrifyingly self-blinded world press still sees Arab attacks upon Jews as part of the “liberation” movement.

It is time to connect the dots. We must cry out against the hateful attacks on Jews and upon the only democracy in the Middle East. It is, in the end, an assault upon all the values we hold dear, including human life.

Vera Schwarcz
Emerita Professor of History
Wesleyan University

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