While playing Nazi dress-up, Roger Waters decries antisemitic branding

Article published by Ynetnews.com, 28 May 2023. © Richard Kemp

It could almost have been a Nuremberg rally from the 1930s. Thousands of hero-worshipping Germans cheering fervently as a strutting figure in Nazi-like attire brandishing a mocked-up Schmeisser machine pistol took to the stage in Berlin this week.

Not content with the hateful symbology of the Third Reich, superannuated British rock star Roger Waters heaped on his characteristic anti-Jewish invective with messages outrageously comparing the Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh to Holocaust victim Anne Frank in order to demonize the Jewish state.

This is archetypal antisemitism, as spelt out in the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s widely accepted definition: the branding of Jews as Nazis; or specifically, ‘drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis’.

Waters’ deliberate implication was that Jews murdered Abu Akleh as Nazis murdered Anne Frank. The fact is that nobody knows whether Abu Akleh was the victim of IDF or Palestinian terrorist bullets. And indeed if it was the former it would certainly have been accidental, the farthest possible cry from the calculated way Anne Frank met her end at the hands of the German killing industry.

In every way, the circumstances of the two women’s deaths were utterly different and only a hate-filled rabble-rousing propagandist could dream up any comparison. Abu Akleh clearly did not deserve to die, but she went to Jenin of her own volition and in search of violence, whereas Anne Frank hardly volunteered to spend two years hidden in an attic in Amsterdam, in daily fear for her life, before making her final journey to Belsen.

Waters of course has a long and vitriol-fueled track record of Jew-baiting and Israel-bashing. Magistrates in Frankfurt who tried to ban his concert there accused him of being ‘one of the most widely known antisemites in the world’. (more…)

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