Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search


Scoop Feedback: Revisionism, Feminism & God

Re: Revisionist History – More On Revisionism - C.D. Sludge Replies - Isn't Feminism An Odd Concept? - God Defend Not New Zealand ?

Scoop welcomes reader feedback. Please send your news and views to

Re: Revisionist History

Dear Sludge,

I'm tiring of hearing this nonsense that everything the President or a Jewish leader says is a code for an accusation of antisemitism. That's complete nonsense and just a tawdry attempt to delegitimize the justified fears of Jews, who face a level of antisemitism in the world unprecedented since World War II. The left has definitely helped to make antisemitism big again by attempting to delegitimize anti-Jewish hatred. Not to mention that the claim of media silencing is just ridiculous on its face; most sources of media in the world are far more sympathetic to the Palestinians than the Israelis.

The term "revisionist", at least in the US, is often used to describe those who distort history for political ends or those who bring an entirely new perspective to some period in history. In Israel, for instance, Benny Morris or Tom Segev are often referred to as revisionists because they were among the first historians to part with the government's version of Israel's history. It has absolutely nothing to do with the Holocaust.


Michael Brenner New York


EDITOR'S NOTE: The Scoop editor asked Michael for further clarification of who else had been saying that, "everything the President or a Jewish leader says is a code for an accusation of antisemitism."

Michael replied…


It is definitely in vogue on the left to answer accusations of antisemitism by immediately declaring that it is not antisemitic to criticize Israel, a statement true on its face but so often stated that it has lost all meaning.

It was even stated in the Guardian of England by Ian Henshall, who has written that the Mossad is responsible for 9/11. And invariably it is presented as a some sort of universal truth, supported by no example or cogent argument. Sludge writes that "the allegation of anti-Semitism has always been the big gun in the media silencing game." Who is it silencing and when? No examples are given.

The obvious implication of the overuse of this phrase is that any criticism of Israel will be deemed antisemitic and that this chills dissent. The reality is that it effectively acts to shut out voices that are pro-Israel or critical of the Palestinians. Read any of the liberal newspapers in Europe or around the world. Read your own website. The notion that criticism of Israel is chilled is a sad joke; exactly the opposite is true.

It is a major issue, because it has now led to a refusal on the left to condemn and combat real antisemitism, like what is going on in France, where there have been over 1000 attacks on Jews in the past 3 years and more than 350 since January. I urge you to read a good article on the issue entitled "France's Scarlet Letter" in the June issue of Vanity Fair.

I think Sludge's article was a particularly nasty and frankly, silly example of this newer practice of looking for accusations of antisemitism when they are not even made. What possible effect could such nonsensical assertions have except to promote the idea that accusations of antisemitism should simply be discounted and discarded as attempts to chill dissent?

Michael Brenner New York


More On Sludge On Revisionist History

Your exploration of George Bush's ill-judged use of the phrase 'revisionist history' appears to read rather more into it than poor George meant, I suspect. Fair enough though. Am I reading too much into your work here though?

I see that while you describe revisionist history relating to the holocaust as merely "controversial", you describe Grandad Prescott's role vis-a-vis the Nazis as "the undeniable – and perhaps more importantly the undenied – truth".

If I deny Mr Prescott's dealings (with all the authority and learning at my disposal), does that render them controversial? Okay, I hereby firmly deny that Mr Prescott had any such dealings. So there! It is now in the same basket as the presumably "deniable" holocaust.

David Tossman


C.D. Sludge Replies

Mr Tossman makes an interesting point about use of the word "controversial" in relation to holocaust denial, in juxtaposition with "undeniable" in relation to the history of the Bush Family. This was unintentional and maybe seen by some as unfortunate. For this an apology is tendered.

Regarding Mr Brenner's criticisms. Scoop may carry a great deal of criticism of Israel, but the idea of a liberal Western media that sympathsises with the Palestinians that he refers to is pure myth. Has he read any of the recent comments on the subject from Rupert Murdoch. Even the BBC issued a memo to staff not to use the term "assassination" in relation to Israel's policy of targeted killings.

Mr Brenner appears to be arguing that the left is increasingly trivialising anti-Semitism due to a bias towards the plight of the Palestinians. The left – were it capable of being asked such a question – might reply that it is actually the pro-Sharon Govt. lobby and Zionist's who are trivialising anti-Semitism through their use of the label to criticise anyone who – for perfectly legitimate reasons – opposes the ongoing occupation and oppression of the Palestinian people.

The conflict in the Holy Land has - as so many people have pointed out - nothing to do with anti-Semitism. It is about land, law and hypocrisy. Moreover most of the Palestinians are in fact Semetic.

That said, any alleged trivialisation of anti-Semitism by the left cannot even hold a candle to the apparent double standard about anti-Semitism displayed through the pro-Sharon Govt lobby and Zionist support of the Bush Administration, an Administration that is built on a family legacy founded on profits from Nazi death camps, not to mention George Bush Sr's involvement in the protection of former NAZI's inside the CIA.

This was the primary point of my article, not to raise the fact that anti-Semitism is used as smokescreen, which it is.Ask critics of the Bilderberg Group and banking reformers what they think about this.

It is sadly typical of the dialogue in this area - namely anti-Semitism and the media - that one side of the argument prefers not to address the real issues that are being raised, preferring instead to attempt to nit-pick around the edges.

- C.D. Sludge


Isn't Feminism An Odd Concept?

Letter to the Editor

Isn't feminism an odd concept? Recent foot stamping and cries of "archaic", "outdated", and "incredulous" litter many "Letters to the editor" columns, rallying against the majorities desire for a moral & civil society, penned by a redundant feminist minority who only serve to affirm just how insecure in their womanhood they still are.

After 30 - 40 years of "girls can do anything", they have made the attempt, and discovered lo and behold that they cannot "do anything" without significant costs and sacrifices being made to themselves, families, children, & relationships. Sadly, many women do not discover these costs until they come to the end of their myopic ideology, scan the environment around them, and find that they have been living a myth, and have suffered terribly for it.

Even founding "feminist mothers" Gloria Steinem & Germaine Greer have discovered this (albeit too late for either of them to have any children), and are now happily ensconced in the antithesis of feminism, marriage!

Equality between the sexes is not about pay parity, glass ceilings, positions of leadership, value of work or access to education.

It is about "same value, different roles", and the interdependence thereof. If this is so hard to accept ladies, then perhaps a cursory reading of Phyllis Shafley's book "Feminist Fantasies" will make it easier to digest. "Same value, different roles" - think about it.

Yours faithfully

Steve Taylor Onehunga


God Defend Not New Zealand ?

On 9 July 1986 NZ-Titanic ship had collided with a legislation iceberg and since then slowly but surely the ship began to sink.

Core ethical values - such as honesty, responsibility, perseverance, self discipline, reliability, courage, kindness, compassion, courtesy, are diminishing.

A society which omits a clear mandate against sexual immorality leaves parents defenseless in their battle for their children's chastity.

Many people do not have anymore love, peace, joy, patience, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and self control.

Some headings in the news and editorial a few years back :

* Something rotten in the state of NZ.

* School told use of cane against law.

* Pupils carry their belongings at all times for fear of theft.

* Honesty in business dealings enforced by legislation.

* The level of violence is unacceptable.

* Many sole parents are struggling to bring up their kids as good citizens.

* We have exposed ourselves to the risk of moral bankruptcy.

* Teachers cannot so much impart values as model them.

* No clear understanding of what is appropriate behavior.

* Youth suicide alarming.

What used to be called disgusting is now called entertaining. Chastity becomes neurotic inhibition. Discipline is now unhealthy repression.

Immediate self- gratification and short term answers are the language of today.

Now NZ Titanic ship is heading toward the second collision on June 25th. Can we survive?

Yours faithfully

Ishak Natan Henderson


© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Jan Rivers: The New Zealanders Involved In Brexit

There are a number who have strong connections to New Zealand making significant running on either side of the contested and divisive decision to leave the European Union. More>>

Rawiri Taonui: The Rise, Fall And Future Of The Independent Māori Parties

Earlier this month the Māori Party and Mana Movement reflected on the shock loss of their last parliamentary seat in this year’s election. It is timely to consider their future. More>>

Don Rennie: Is It Time To Take ACC Back To First Principles?

The word “investing” has played a major part in the operations of the ACC since 1998... More>>

Using Scoop Professionally? Introducing ScoopPro

ScoopPro is a new offering aimed at ensuring professional users get the most out of Scoop and support us to continue improving it so that Scoop continues to exist as a public service for all New Zealanders. More>>