Tuesday, May 06, 2008

A Stinky Affair III:

A politically-activist art exhibit has let out some genies at New England's heartland

New information regarding this story about which I blogged here:

A stinky affair
A stinky Affair - II

Ian Thal continues to cover this affair in his blog, here:

An article in the August 5, 2007 The New York Times tells a parallel story:

[Schumann] was born in Silesia, now part of Poland, in 1934, the son of a Lutheran schoolmaster. During World War II the family fled to northern Germany, where, as refugees, they lived on scraps gleaned from local farms.

Which indicates that Schumann's family fled from Silesia not due to redrawing of borders but by the advance of Soviet troops or Allied bombing campaigns, not from Nazi Germany, but rather deeper into Nazi Germany. Other articles tell similar stories.

... Without going too in depth into the complex history of Silesia, one ought note that up until 1939, when Germany invaded Poland, only parts of Silesia had been part of Germany. Of the "Ninety-nine percent of the population" that was deported after the 1945 redrawing of Germany's borders, many of those Germans were settlers who had taken up homes, land, and property from Silesian Poles who had been either assigned to slave labor camps or deported to the General Government area of occupied Poland, or the Silesian Jews who were walled into ghettos or exterminated in death camps sucg Auschwitz-Birkeneau, conveniently located in Silesia. Clearly, Schumann's family was a refugee not from Nazi Germany but from the defeat of Nazi Germany.

To recapitulate the affair, in very crude outline:

An artist spends 10 days in the Palestinian Territories, comes back to his new-England home and puts up an exhibition which essentially equates the Israeli/Palestinian conflict with conditions in Nazi Germany, trivializes the Holocaust and undermines historical fact.

His defenders point, without much concern for factual accuracy, to his own history, of how his family escaped from Nazi rule.

However, a closer scrutiny of the artist's history reveals that his family was not escaping from the Nazis, but rather, "was a refugee not from Nazi Germany but from the defeat of Nazi Germany".

These reality bytes matter. They tell a different story to the one initially advanced on behalf of that artist. A story published in Wikipedia as an authentic, verifiable account of history turns out to be a false narrative, with false ramifications about the motivations and sentiments of said artist.

Once again, the Holocaust is co-opted by Palestinian agitators and their pro-Palestinian sycophants to distort historical facts and records in an attempt to gain some perverse ownership by-proxy over the greatest evil ever conceived and perpetrated by man against man.

But as we must know, Schumann is an honourable man...


At 12:09 PM EDT, Blogger Ian Thal said...

Thanks again for pointing your readers to this story in which I have been long entangled. Just two corrections:

1.) My surname has but one "l", not two.

2.) I have no evidence that Schumann ever claimed to be a refugee from the Third Reich. That claim appears to be solely a misapprehension, wishful thinking, or possibly an invention by his defenders.

I also added another update to this story, which illustrates how to affect positive change to wikipedia in a civil and ethical manner.


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