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(Washington, D.C., November 16, 2020) November 12, 2020, marked the 82nd anniversary of Kristallnacht – the prelude to the ‘Final Solution’ of the Holocaust during which the Nazis murdered six million Jews and tortured, starved, brutalized, and maimed millions more. On that day, Christiane Amanpour, while broadcasting on CNN, used that cataclysmic event in the annals of Jewish and human history to exploit rather than commemorate these Jews at the hands of the Nazi killing machine. In her own words:

“This week 82 years ago Kristallnacht happened. It was the Nazis warning shot across the bow of our human civilization that led to genocide against a whole identity and in that tower of burning books it led to an attack on fact, knowledge history and truth. After four years of a modern-day assault on those same values by Donald trump, the Biden Harris team pledges a return to norm.”

The disgraceful comparison of the Nazi’s genocide against Jews to President Trump’s policies is a cynical desecration of the memory of the millions of Jews who perished and suffered during the Holocaust. In so doing, she trivializes the term genocide, and in particular the Holocaust. It does not go unnoticed – but it is not unexpected – that Amanpour refers to the victims of this genocide as a “whole identity,” refusing to acknowledge the victims as Jews. This is not surprising coming from Amanpour who like other fierce critics of Israel – along with overt anti-Semites – will, nonetheless, invoke the Holocaust to maliciously advance their political agenda. Christiane Amanpour’s long history of anti-Israel bias, going back 3 decades, has been well documented.

In addition to regularly exploiting the memory of murdered Jews, political propagandists likewise exploit the memory of the millions of African Americans who were slaves or faced oppressive discrimination and injustice. They do this by indiscriminately referring to all political opponents as racist, trivializing the significance of the word and the depth of discrimination and suffering that African Americans endured during slavery and beyond. The indiscriminate  reference to political opponents as racist – maliciously and falsely invoked, without relevance or context to the person being targeted – has become the modus operandi in our political climate by those who cannot dispute their adversaries with facts and truth. In so doing, they falsely associate completely irrelevant and unrelated crimes against humanity to their political foes. This is how movements including fascism, communism, and Islamism amongst other ‘isms,’ have managed to assume power giving rise to repressive totalitarian regimes.

Says Chairman of the EMET Board of Directors, David Green, “Amanpour’s exploitation of the Holocaust at the expense of Jewish victims of genocide in order to libel the Trump administration is as irrational as it is contemptible. If she had rational or factual bases to support her contempt for President Trump, I suspect she would have readily presented such evidence rather than desperately resort to defamation. Guilt by association is a powerful force, however, when false and no association exists it is an expression of the evilest intent. Unfortunately, completely incongruous references to human tragedies to advance political agendas is a despicable modus operandi of political propagandists such as Amanpour. When the narrative is not supported by the truth – so the truth is consciously ignored or denied because it is an obstacle to the agenda – we are dealing with propaganda and not journalism. Many Americans harbor distrust and cynicism towards most media outlets. We have people like Amanpour – propagandist masquerading as journalist – to blame.”​

Adds Sarah Stern, EMET Founder and President, “It is beyond the pale to use the analogy of the Nazis and Kristallnacht. Period. For those of us who have lost scores of members of our families to the Nazi’s systematic killing machine, this sort of trivialization of the Holocaust is simply outrageous. Why does Amanpour speak about a “genocide against a whole identity”? Why does she neglect to mention the word, “Jews”? The Holocaust was an attack on human civilization, but it was specifically an attack on the Jewish people and on Jewish civilization. She has politicized and trivialized the Holocaust, and has ironically led to an attack on – to use her own words – “fact, knowledge, history and truth.”

About the Author

The Endowment for Middle East Truth
Founded in 2005, The Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET) is a Washington, D.C. based think tank and policy center with an unabashedly pro-America and pro-Israel stance. EMET (which means truth in Hebrew) prides itself on challenging the falsehoods and misrepresentations that abound in U.S. Middle East policy.

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