Another Stereotype of the Month entry:
Native Jew Haters
By David Yeagley
FrontPageMagazine.com | April 21, 2005
David Ahenakew's remarks made over three years ago (December, 2002) are still ringing in the ears of many people, as his trial has finally gotten underway. Ahenakew, former Chief of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indians, former leader of the Assembly of First Nations (an extra-tribal organization for all Canadian Indians), was accused of supporting Hitler's right to "fry six million of those guys" [Jews] during the Holocaust of WWII. Ahenakew faces charges of a "hate crime."
A recent commentary in the Jerusalem Post points out that Ahenakew has been removed from tribal office and has been openly condemned by different Canadian Indian organizations. The article also notes that some Canadian Indian leaders (like Roseau River Anishinabe Chief Terrance Nelson) are defensive about the issue, saying Indians have fought for the rights of all minorities in Canada, yet the Jews have not done anything for the Indians. Nelson said, "One of the things I wanted the Jewish community here in Canada to recognize is how bad race relations are here."
Ahenakew pleaded not guilty to the charges of "hate crime" and "promoting hatred," ten months after his remarks. His trial was postponed. It was expected to begin the summer of 2004, but only this month, April 4, 2005, did the initial hearings actually begin, in Saskatoon. The matter is to be concluded by June 10.
Ahenakew cited the American/Canadian Indian "holocaust" of the last 500 years as an outrage that dwarfs the Jewish Holocaust. Ahenakew wants to see the Canadian people on trial for that. "They should be here answering questions about hatred toward the Indians," Ahenakew said.
Ahenakew even blames the Jews for starting WWII, in the same way that some Americans blame the Negroes for the Civil War.
Making accurate parallels is not a strong suit of many Indians leaders today. As I have pointed out, there was no Indian "holocaust." Just about everything in that analogy is false or impossible. I said on Bill O'Reilly's show on Feb. 10, 2005, "Indians fought! Many, many white people were killed." "Jews were marched like lambs to the slaughter."
But non-Indian fraud, Ward Churchill, also likes to play down the Jewish Holocaust and dramatize the "Indian" holocaust. Churchill is also infamous for comparing the civilian office workers in the World Trade Center towers to "little Eichmanns" who got what they deserved. He calls the Islamic suicide murderers brave soldiers, with heroic sentiments.
Denigrating the Jewish Holocaust is an Indian thing these days, among leftist Indian leaders that is. One might expect Indians to have affinity with Jews, by the common plight, of being unwanted, but Ahenakew doesn't see it. "We're not the same culture," he said. "We cannot mix our culture with yours and expect it to work."
Maybe it's just one more chicken come home to roost, as Churchill might say. Mistaken Jewish leftists, who taught American Indian Movement leaders what to say, now find that these Indian leaders are anti-Semitic. Of course, anti-Semitism is itself part and parcel of Leftism, but I'll bet people like Kenneth Stern, great defender and supporter of the American Indian Movement, never expected Indian leftists to turn against Jews.
Leftist Indian leaders are looking for a trump card to win the "victim" game. They're trying to usurp the awe in the word "Holocaust," first and exclusively used to identify the nature of the Jewish spectacle of WWII. It's the leftist game: usurpation of words, especially power words, particularly if they're associated with Jews. To emphasize the victimhood of Indians, leftist Indians will deny the Jewish Holocaust, or worse, justify it.
Yet, they want the word "holocaust." I say, "No deal." Indians were warriors, fighting fiercely for home and family. Jews were pacifist "immigrants" in Europe, and were considered foreigners even in places they'd lived for hundreds of years.
There was no systematic government design to annihilate Indian people, in Canada or America. There was no torture program, nor use of Indian bodies for scientific experiment for the advancement of the rest of the human race.
Extensive Indian reservations treaties were established by treaty. These land ghettoes were not intended to eliminate Indians, but merely keep Indians out of the way.
Indians were just in the way. They weren't hated because they were Indian, like the Jews were hated because they were Jews. White people did not envy the Indian life, for it was not in competition. But the Jews were more Philistine than the Philistines, greatly excelling in the European cultures in which they lived.
Any comparison of the Jewish Holocaust with the story of the North American Indian is really anti-Semitism.
>> Ahenakew cited the American/Canadian Indian "holocaust" of the last 500 years as an outrage that dwarfs the Jewish Holocaust. <<
Yes...so? If the estimates of 10, 20, or 50 million Indians killed are correct, the Native holocaust did dwarf the Jewish Holocaust of six million killed.
>> As I have pointed out, there was no Indian "holocaust." <<
And as I've pointed out, Yeagley is a blithering idiot who is wrong almost every time he opens his mouth.
>> Just about everything in that analogy is false or impossible. <<
Is it? We'll see about that.
>> I said on Bill O'Reilly's show on Feb. 10, 2005, "Indians fought! Many, many white people were killed." "Jews were marched like lambs to the slaughter." <<
Again, so? The defining characteristic of the Holocaust is the number who died, not the manner in which they resisted. If Yeagley doesn't understand this, he's sadly (self) deluded.
No wonder he thinks the analogy is false. He doesn't understand what the analogy is.
>> Denigrating the Jewish Holocaust is an Indian thing these days, among leftist Indian leaders that is. <<
It doesn't denigrate the Jewish Holocaust to point out that the Native holocaust was worse numerically. This is a fact, not an insult.
>> Leftist Indian leaders are looking for a trump card to win the "victim" game. <<
No, they're trying to correct the historical record—to bring to light the terribly underplayed tragedy that began with Columbus.
>> They're trying to usurp the awe in the word "Holocaust," first and exclusively used to identify the nature of the Jewish spectacle of WWII. <<
I don't think so, but if you don't like Natives using the word "holocaust," come up with a new word. Whatever word you use, the record remains unchanged.
>> It's the leftist game: usurpation of words, especially power words, particularly if they're associated with Jews. <<
That's funny coming from the conservative side of the political spectrum. After launching a preemptive war of aggression in "self-defense," President Bush has made a fetish of redefining his Social Security plan as "personal accounts," not private accounts. When it comes to inventing terminology (Clear Skies, Healthy Forests, "culture of life," "constitutional option," etc.), he makes Big Brother look like an amateur.
>> To emphasize the victimhood of Indians, leftist Indians will deny the Jewish Holocaust, or worse, justify it. <<
Ahenakew is the only Indian justifying the Holocaust, and he's a rightist Indian like Yeagley, not a leftist Indian.
Those limp-wristed Jews
>> Indians were warriors, fighting fiercely for home and family. Jews were pacifist "immigrants" in Europe, and were considered foreigners even in places they'd lived for hundreds of years. <<
Again, this is irrelevant to the definition of "Holocaust." Check the dictionary if you don't believe me. See if it says anything about the victims being natives rather than immigrants or pacifists rather than warriors.
Clearly, Yeagley's view of Jews is stereotypical. He obviously knows nothing about how they fought or resisted the Nazi pogroms. They were tricked into entering the ghettos and death camps; they didn't enter willingly because they believed in giving up.
Yeagley's "warrior" ravings are also stereotypical. Many Indians were pacifists in the best sense. Chiefs such as Seattle (center) sought to reach an accommodation rather than fighting to the death. Every treaty they signed, all 400 of them, was an embrace of peace rather than war.
The Southerners did the same thing in the Civil War, as did Americans in Korea and Vietnam. Ending a war short of victory doesn't mean they weren't warriors. Living to fight another day is a sound moral and military strategy, not a sign of cowardice.
>> There was no systematic government design to annihilate Indian people, in Canada or America. <<
True, there was no one "design" that encompassed the entire history of the New World. Remember, we're talking about 500 years and several successive governments. But there were many systematic and unsystematic designs at the imperial, colonial, national, state, and local levels—enough to render this statement wrong. See Genocide by Any Other Name... for further information.
>> There was no torture program, nor use of Indian bodies for scientific experiment for the advancement of the rest of the human race. <<
True, Americans usually went to straight to murdering or executing Indians without torturing them. Of course, the Nazis didn't have a "torture program" either.
But Yeagley is "dead wrong" about the experimentation on Indians, writes correspondent Al Carroll:
Indian bodies were very WIDELY used by scientists for experiments. The Army College of Surgeons directed US soldiers, at the request of the Smithsonian and others, to collect Indian bodies and bones for museums. Many of these were used by physical anthropologists, esp. the believers in scientific racism and those who did what we now know is pseudo scientific nonsense, measuring skulls to prove whites superior to nonwhites.
There was even a notorious case where Pawnee scouts returning home after their US Army enlistment terms were up were murdered by US troops and their bodies wound up in a museum. One of my committee members, Pawnee historian James Riding In, has written about these issues quite a bit.
And as for experiments on living Indians, I wrote about another pseudo-scientific test, this one non-fatal, where white Army recruits were tested against Indian ones, and they concluded some really bizarre things like claiming Indians could see in the dark like cats, always knew which way was north without a compass, etc.
These pseudo-scientific assumptions did have fatal consequences. Indian soldiers were put into danger in combat far more often based on these ideas, with a casualty rate during WW I almost four times that of white soldiers.
And what about the involuntary sterilization of Indian women during the 20th century? This wasn't called a form of eugenics for nothing. One way or another, the Americans' goal was to eliminate Indians as a race.
As many have noted, America employed an apartheid model. Blacks and other minorities were segregated from whites by law and custom. They lived in their own neighborhoods, "across the tracks," for much of their history. Indians were pushed West and eventually fenced in on isolated reservations; if they left, the Army hunted them down. Interracial sex and marriage were crimes and sins; Americans were so scared of race-mixing that they killed men of color for merely touching white women.
In short, the Nazi extermination program was similar to its American counterpart, as I noted in Adolf Hitler: A True American. The Nazis merely carried America's anti-Indian tactics to their logical conclusion.
Warriors signed peace treaties?
>> Extensive Indian reservations treaties were established by treaty. <<
No kidding. I though all Indians were warriors. How is it possible that warriors stopped warring long enough to sign peace treaties? Can you say "contradiction"?
>> These land ghettoes were not intended to eliminate Indians, but merely keep Indians out of the way. <<
So Yeagley admits the US herded people into ghettos just like Germany did? That's a start, at least.
The "land ghettoes" were intended to eliminate the Indians' way of life, to force them to assimilate, which is a component of genocide. Besides, the Nazi ghettos weren't intended to eliminate the Jews either. The parallels continue.
>> Indians were just in the way. They weren't hated because they were Indian, like the Jews were hated because they were Jews. <<
Yeagley's got to be kidding. See Savage Indians for a long list of Europeans and Americans stating their hatred for Indians as Indians.
>> White people did not envy the Indian life, for it was not in competition. <<
Even Yeagley can't be this ignorant, can he? The whole concept of America is based on a desire for freedom, individual rights, and a boundless frontier. That's exactly the Indian life.
Until the rise of urbanization in the 20th century, Americans sought the best aspects of Indian culture. They rejected the European model of authoritarianism in favor of the Indian model of egalitarianism. They left sophisticated cities, where wealth and pedigree mattered, for the "primitive" wilderness.
As James W. Loewen explained in Lies My Teacher Told Me:
The historian Gary Nash tells us that interculturation took place from the start in Virginia, "facilitated by the fact that some Indians lived among the English as day laborers, while a number of settlers fled to Indian villages rather than endure the rigors of life among the autocratic English." Indeed, many white and black newcomers chose to live an Indian lifestyle. In his Letters from an American Farmer, Michel Guillaume Jean de Crevecoeur wrote, "There must be in the Indians' social bond something singularly captivating, and far superior to be boasted of among us; for thousands of Europeans are Indians, and we have no examples of even one of those Aborigines having from choice become Europeans." Crevecoeur overstated his case: as we know from Squanto's example, some Natives chose to live among whites from the beginning. The migration was mostly the other way, however. As Benjamin Franklin put it, "No European who has tasted Savage Life can afterwards bear to live in our societies."
Europeans were always trying to stop the outflow. Hernando De Soto had to post guards to keep his men and women from defecting to Native societies. The Pilgrims so feared Indianization that they made it a crime for men to wear long hair. "People who did run away to the Indians might expect very extreme punishments, even up to the death penalty," if caught by Whites. Nonetheless, right up to the end of independent Indian nationhood in 1890, whites continued to defect, and whites who lived an Indian lifestyle, such as Daniel Boone, became cultural heroes in white society.
Communist Eastern Europe erected an Iron Curtain to stop its outflow but could never explain why, if Communist societies were the most progressive on earth, they had to prevent people from defecting. American colonial embarrassment similarly went straight to the heart of their ideology, also an ideology of progress. Textbooks in Eastern Europe and the United States have handled the problem in the same way: by omitting the facts. Not one American history textbook mentions the attraction of Native societies to European Americans and African Americans.
African Americans frequently fled to Indian societies to escape bondage. What did whites find so alluring? According to Benjamin Franklin, "All their government is by Counsel of the Sages. There is no Force; there are no Prisons, no officers to compel Obedience, or inflict Punishment." Probably foremost, the lack of hierarchy in the Native societies in the eastern United States attracted the admiration of European observers. Frontiersmen were taken with the extent to which Native Americans enjoyed freedom as individuals. Women were also accorded more status and power in most Native societies than in white societies of the time, which white women noted with envy in captivity narratives. Although leadership was substantially hereditary in some nations, most Indian societies north of Mexico were much more democratic than Spain, France, or even England in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. "There is not a Man in the Ministry of the Five Nations, who has gained his Office, otherwise than by Merit," waxed Lt. Gov. Cadwallader Golden of New York in 1727. "Their Authority is only the Esteem of the People, and ceases the Moment that Esteem is lost." Golden applied to the Iroquois terms redolent of "the natural rights of mankind": "Here we see the natural Origin of all Power and Authority among a free People."
See Indians Gave Us Enlightenment and Democracy Rocks—with Indian Help for more on these points.
>> Any comparison of the Jewish Holocaust with the story of the North American Indian is really anti-Semitism. <<
Anything Yeagley writes about Indians is anti-Indianism. He scorns any Indian who isn't aiming a spear, bow and arrow, or gun at someone, which is pretty much everyone.
Culture kills in Red Lake tragedy
Genocide by any other name...
Indians as warriors
Yeagley the Indian apple
. . .
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