Yet again, a conference here in the Lithuanian capital dedicated to combating fascism and antisemitism is announced, without there having been a public call for papers, without a single speaker from among those who actually combat fascism and antisemitism in the country, with nobody from the democratically elected Vilnius Jewish community (not even the long-time editor of Jerusalem of Lithuania who has exposed and combated antisemitism for decades). No Holocaust survivors. None of the nationally relevant questions of the day can be found on the conference program. As ever, outstanding academic personalities from abroad are recruited to lend the gravitas and provide serious papers on an array of topics (which they admirably do), as long as these have little directly to do with the actual contemporary issues here in Lithuania (but the conference introduction by Prof. Dovilė Budrytė does indeed touch on some of the issues, which seem, however, to be largely absent from the actual conference program). The last such event, in 2015, resulted in the Norwegian Embassy withdrawing support and launching an inquiry on behalf of the EEA (European Economic Area) funders of that event.
To make matters worse, the program is skewed to provide further glory for various leaders (and their relatives) of the current rigged-election bosses of the “official” Jewish community that is largely state-sponsored (indeed, the restitution-controlling “Good Will Foundation” is itself a major conference sponsor). The community’s election rules were changed last spring mid-campaign (an act found to be prima facie illegal by the courts) to disenfranchise the 2,200 Jews of Vilnius while gifting electoral power to a roomful of oligarchs (and that was carried out with a small army of security guards that kept members of the community out of their own community premises). Given the official leadership’s condemnation of the Vilnius community’s honest elections as one of “Russian speakers who call themselves Jews,” the goings-on in the hijacked official Jewish community (which allegedly include letting go of Jewish employees in higher admin positions) themselves merit a research paper at an academic conference on antisemitism (more on this by DH, JTA, Pinchos Fridberg, Leonas Kaplanas, Josifas Parasonis).
Shockingly, not a single representative of the democratically elected Vilnius Jewish Community board, comprising 21 elected members, is on the program, even to deliver a one-minute greeting. There is still some time to fix this, and perhaps at long last the Israeli Embassy, itself on the program, will intervene diplomatically to avoid being seen yet again as improperly propping up a kangaroo-election ersatz Jewish community leadership. The ethical conundrum is all the more evocative given that the conference is financed in large part by the “Good Will Foundation” restitution monies deriving from the religious properties of the annihilated Jewish population of Lithuania. In addition to shirking the issues of the day in local antisemitism, the conference shuts out the legitimate representatives of the living remnant Jewish community. This is something for the august foreign scholars flown in, hoteled, and wined and dined, to reflect upon.
But the major issues are known to all, and attendees at the conference might want to bring some of these up at the conference:
- Annual neo-Nazi parades that often glorify actual local Holocaust collaborators, permitted by the authorities for the center of Vilnius on March 11th independence day, and the center of Kaunas on February 16th independence day.
- Ongoing alleged “national” neo-Nazi blog, abounding in racism and antisemitism, by Mr. “Zeppelinus” who is alleged to still be a high official in the Economy Ministry. He is known for his photoshop “artwork” that features racist and antisemitic invective.
- Ongoing glorification of Holocaust collaborators via street names, university lecture hall names and an array of events.
- Harassment, defamation and disemployment of those who dare speak up on these topics, most recently the campaign of personal and professional destruction against author Ruta Vanagaite (materials in English in Weekly of Vilnius and Defending History). Only recent did the campaign by prosecutors and police against Evaldas Balčiūnas let up (for perspective, please scroll to bottom of section and peruse upward in chronological order).
- Ongoing impact of the “red-brown law” that criminalizes dissent to Double Genocide politics.
- Requests for relevant state agencies to issue apologies to the defamed Jewish Holocaust survivors whose names have been marred for history for their (a) heroism in fighting Hitler with the anti-Nazi partisans in the forests of Lithuania during the Holocaust or (b) for their speaking up on issues of Holocaust history.
- Policies of defiling Jewish cemeteries via commercial convention centers when such desecration would never even be contemplated for a historic Christian cemetery of medieval Grand Duchy of Lithuania vintage.
- Holocaust denial, downgrading, and obfuscation, particularly via state-sponsored projects to distort history in line with the ultranationalist Double Genocide movement.
- Alleged cases of East European governments using restitution payments to effectively hijack weak and remnant Jewish communities, with efforts at denationalization, manipulation of opinion on issues relating to Holocaust history and antisemitism and delegitimization of extant Jewish communities (“they are all just Russian speakers”), sometimes with campaigns against legitimate local communities that function democratically.
- An array of issues arising in the field of antisemitism, bias and racism, and more generally, Human Rights in the country and the region. See Defending History’s sections on antisemitism, Christian-Jewish issues, dignity of the dead, free speech, glorification of collaborators, Holocaust Survivor rights, LGBT rights, Litvak rights, freedom of the media, neo-Nazi marches, racism, Roma issues, Russian speakers’ issues, women’s rights, and DH’s Prophet Amos Awards.
Turning from issues to personalities, it is curious to see if any of those who have locally stood up against antisemitism, fascism and the related forms of hate have been invited to this conference. The list includes Vytenis Povilas Andriukaitis, Kristina Apanavičiūtė Sulikienė, Mausha Bairakas, Evaldas Balčiūnas, Chaim Bargman, Ruta (Reyzke) Bloshtein, Milan Chersonski, Aleksandrs Feigmanis, Pinchos Fridberg, Simon Gurevich (Simonas Gurevičius), Leonas Kaplanas, Vilma Fiokla Kiurė, Rachel Kostanian, Andrius Kulikauskas, Julius Norwilla (Norvila), Josifas Parasonis, Jacob Piliansky, Rūta Vanagaitė, Nida Vasiliauskaitė, Lina Žigelytė.
Modern Lithuania is a successful vibrant democracy featuring robust and respectful dialogue at many levels. What a shame that an international conference on antisemitism and fascism seems, once again, to be misconceived in the spirit of covering up the issues that need to be discussed and excluding the voices that dare discuss them, all in a misguided effort to present some smug PR in place of a table of honest and frank discourse. And, unethically financed by a misnamed “Good Will Foundation” from the funds of the religious property of the massacred Jewish population.
Residents of Vilnius who might be inclined to come and politely speak up are invited to register for this Thursday’s conference.
Originally published on 2017-11-07
Source: Difending History
Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.
Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!
Donate to Support Us
We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.
[wpedon id=”4696″ align=”left”]
A few months ago I received a message from a professor at the Khomeini Institute for Education and Research in Tehran, Iran, informing me that my 2010 book “War and Empire: The American Way of Life” (London, Pluto Press) had been translated into Farsi. He requested that I write an Introduction for Iranian readers. What follows is that Introduction. Two years ago the Xinhua Peoples’ Press in Beijing, China also published a translation in Mandarin.
In the aftermath of Saddam Hussein’s 1991 attempt to annex Kuwait, the U.S. deliberately destroyed much of Iraq’s water and sewer infrastructure. The Pentagon even admitted ...
Neocon 101: What do Neoconservatives Believe?“Neocons” believe that the United States should not be ashamed to use its unrivaled power – forcefully if necessary – to promote its values around the world. Some even speak of the need to cultivate a US empire. Neoconservatives believe modern threats facing the US can no longer be reliably contained and therefore must be prevented, sometimes through preemptive military action.Most neocons believe that the US has allowed dangers to gather by not spending enough on defense and not confronting threats aggressively enough. One such threat, they contend, was Saddam Hussein and his pursuit of ...
War has indeed become perpetual and peace no longer even a fleeting wish nor a distant memory. We have become habituated to the rumblings of war and the steady drum beat of propaganda about war’s necessity and the noble motives that inspire it. We will close hospitals. We will close schools. We will close libraries and museums. We will sell off our parklands and water supply. People will sleep on the streets and go hungry. The war machine will go on.
What are we to do? The following text is Part III of a broader analysis entitled War and the State: Business ...
President Donald Trump Monday, April 3, 2017, welcomed the Egyptian military dictator, General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who assumed the title of Field Marshal after arresting and deposing the democratically elected President Mohamed Mursi in July 2013.
After the meeting Trump told the press: “We agree on so many things. I just want to let everybody know, in case there was any doubt, that we are very much behind President el-Sisi. He’s done a fantastic job in a very difficult situation.”
By “a fantastic job” Trump was apparently referring to the massacre of hundreds of innocent Egyptians in the aftermath of US-endorsed coup ...
While the US claims recent sanctions targeting Russia are based on alleged Russian interference in last year’s US elections, a careful examination of US policy post-Cold War reveals a systematic campaign aimed at undermining Moscow, encircling Russia and attempting to overturn the current, prevailing political order there in favor of one dominated by US interests.At each step, various excuses are concocted, mainly to mesh with current political narratives embedded within public perception at any given time. Currently, playing left and right-leaning Americans against one another regarding the 2016 election and still-unproven allegations that Russia played a hand at tipping the ...
The Independent State of Croatia (NDH) was a World War II puppet state of Germany and Italy, which was established in parts of Axis-occupied Yugoslavia. The NDH was founded on 10 April 1941, after the invasion of Yugoslavia by the Axis powers.A poster from the WWII Nazi Ustashi Independent State of Croatia with the state flag (Source: Instagram)The NDH consisted of modern-day Croatia and most of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as some parts of modern-day Serbia and Slovenia. The regime targeted Serbs, Jews, Roma people and anti-fascist or dissident Croatians and Muslims, as part of a large-scale genocide campaign ...
The term “security” is a very multifaceted one. But today’s geopolitical situation forces us to think about its military aspect above all.Our attention is completely absorbed by news about wars, conflicts, military exercises and increasing defence capabilities. An average European reader has no chances to skip this kind of news while looking through news feeds of popular media.Even planned further militarization of the European region and Russia pose the real threat today. A whole generation of European children is growing in the firm belief that the war is approaching. We destroy ourselves by our fears. We notice everything concerning military ...
All of the Balkans, legendary German Reichskanzler (Imperial Chancellor) Otto von Bismarck famously said, were not worth the bones of a single Pomeranian grenadier. And Bismarck, a Prussian landowner or junker had nothing but amused contempt for Pomeranian grenadiers who were regarded as a standing joke in the German Army.
In 1890, brash, young new German Emperor Wilhelm II fired Bismarck after 28 years as minister-president of Prussia and then first Imperial Chancellor of Germany. He abandoned the priority policy of maintaining warm ties and close communications with Russia that Bismarck had always followed and scrapped the Dreikaiserbund, the League of ...
While all eyes have been on the U.S. presidential campaign, such foreign-policy hot spots as Syria, Iran and Pakistan, and the increasingly frosty relations between the United States and China, a simmering problem in the Balkans threatens to come to a boil. The most serious clashes to date involving angry Serb inhabitants of the northern portion of Kosovo and international Kosovo Force (KFOR) peacekeeping personnel erupted on November 28. Thirty German and Austrian soldiers were injured, some by small-arms fire and Molotov cocktails, when KFOR troops tried to remove roadblocks that Serb residents had erected. Those barricades have been the most ...
It is now clear that on 14 April 2018, the three Governments of U.S., UK, and France, fired over a hundred missiles against Syria, on no more 'justification' than staged videos that had been done by those regimes' own proxy boots-on-the-ground fighters in Syria, who are trying to overthrow Syria's existing, non-sectarian Government and replace it by a Sharia-law regime that would be selected by agents of Saudi Arabia's ruling family. In other words: the fighters whom the U.S., UK, and France, had been arming and training, had themselves created this pretext of a faked 'gas attack' having been perpetrated ...
The world has suddenly realised that there is a “refugee crisis”. There are more refugees now than at any time since World War II. The number has grown three-fold since the end of 2001. The problem is treated as if it arose just recently, but it has been a long time coming. The pressure has been building and building until it has burst the dams of wilful ignorance.
Death and despair has migrated to the doorsteps of Europe. But tens of millions of people do not simply abandon home and native land for an insecure dangerous future of desperate struggle. The ...
Media across the world are literally transfixed by the spectacle of US elections. The Donald Trump-Hillary Clinton, Republicans vs. Democrats battle is captivating enough to distract public attention from other issues.Democracy promotion has been a centerpiece of US foreign policy for over half a century since the days when President Woodrow Wilson crafted a new foreign policy that involved active democracy promotion. The implementation of the «beacon on the hill» concept presupposes that the United States would act as a model of excellence for others to follow is analogous to contemporary soft-power democracy promotion efforts. Lecturing on democracy is a ...
Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!Donate to Support UsWe would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.[wpedon id="4696" align="left"]
Miloš Zeman said in an interview for the Serbian newspaper Večernje novosti, that recognition of Kosovo’s independence has opened a Pandora’s Box and called the Kosovo deputy Prime Minister Hashim Thaçi a war criminal.
Zeman, among other things, confirmed that he will travel to Moscow for the celebrations of the end of the Second World War because the Soviet army liberated most of the former Czechoslovakia.
The Czech president has openly expressed himself on Kosovo in the past, for example he labeled the country a very strange state with a strong narco-mafia influence.
This article originally appeared at Hospodářské Noviny. Translated for RI by Anthony Grulich
The recognition of ...
If we start from a premise which understands that Britain and its NATO allies are capable of mounting false flag events in Syria with chemical weapons, then it is entirely possible that British secret services carried out a similar propaganda stunt in England with regard to former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal.
We also need to bear in mind that British state intelligence agencies are plausibly running a covert assassination program targeting Russian exiles living in Britain – for the purpose of incriminating Moscow.
Over the past two decades, more than a dozen Russian dissidents have met untimely deaths while residing in England, including ...
After the catastrophic attacks of September 11 2001 monumental sorrow and a feeling of desperate and understandable anger began to permeate the American psyche. A few people at that time attempted to promote a balanced perspective by pointing out that the United States had also been responsible for causing those same feelings in people in other nations, but they produced hardly a ripple. Although Americans understand in the abstract the wisdom of people around the world empathizing with the suffering of one another, such a reminder of wrongs committed by our nation got little hearing and was soon overshadowed by ...
IntroductionThe fundamental aim of the text below is to deal with the concept and models of global security as one of the crucial topics of global political studies. We have to keep in mind that a term and notion of security usually imply a kind of sense of protection and safety from different possible harms coming from „outside“. Therefore, it can be generally acceptable and understandable that the states want to protect their own territories by expanding great resources in making their territorial safe. Security topics are of very different kind, ranging from the causes of conflict between states to ...
1. Kosovo is not ancient Albanian land
Its very name comes from the Serbian word "kos," meaning blackbird. Its Albanian name, "Kosova," means nothing whatsoever.
Kosovo was the heartland of medieval Serbian state and the site of the 1389 battle in which both the Serbian prince and the Ottoman sultan died, checking the Turkish expansion into the Balkans for almost 70 years. Ethnic Albanians were settled there by the Ottomans over the intervening centuries, and became a majority due to pogroms and persecution of Serbs - which began under Ottoman rule but continued under Austro-Hungarian occupation in WWI and German/Italian occupation in ...
One of the biggest and most outlandish US infowar and propaganda whoppers of the 1999 Kosovo conflict was the infamous NPR story of the ethnic Albanian Anne Frank. This seems like a mindless, unethical, immoral, and vicious, racist propaganda hoax today, using propaganda to destroy an entire people, Serbian Orthodox Christians. The Anne Frank infowar campaign was manufactured to support an illegal land grab in Kosovo, in support of a Muslim Albanian separatist and secessionist terrorist war against Serbian Christians. But at the time it was very popular and helped sell the US bombing of Yugoslavia in support of Albanian ...
Zagreb, 1941Become familiar with the basic info about one of the most beautiful countries in the world - Croatia. Photos, data & recommendations where to stay in order to enjoy this Adriatic pearl. If you are not the Serb.Split, Dalmatia, Croatia, 2019: "Kill the Serb" on the car with the plates from SerbiaOrigins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!Donate to Support UsWe would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to ...
War and Empire: The American Way of Life
Pax Americana: Who are the Neocon Imperialists?
Historical Origins of the State: Barbarians at the Gate
President Trump Welcomes Egyptian Dictator – The “Butcher of Cairo”
Russian Sanctions Latest Betrayal of Post-Cold War Agreements
Croatian President Kolinda Grabar Kitarovic Photographed Holding Nazi-Fascist Flag
Who will Secure Lithuania?
Bismarck, the United States and the Pomeranian Grenadier
U.S., U.K., & France, Certainly Committed an International War Crime against Syria on April 14th, 2018
The Refugee Crisis and the New Holocaust
US Elections: Neither Free nor Fair
Hillary Clinton – A Member of the “Axis of (D)evil”
Czech President Zeman: Deputy PM of Kosovo is a War Criminal
The Skripal Affair – Another False Flag in NATO Litany to Criminalize Russia
US has Killed More than 20 Million People in 37 “Victim Nations” since World War II
International Systems of States and Global Security Models
Five Facts About Kosovo the Fakenews Media is Lying to You About
Anne Frank of Kosovo Propaganda Hoax
This is Croatia: A Book of Basic Info about the Country (PDF)