The original headline of this article was: ‘The People Who Were Burned to Ashes on Ash Wednesday’
It was Shrove Tuesday, 1945 in the magnificent German art city of Dresden, which was packed with helpless Christian refugees fleeing the Red Army of the Stalinist USSR. Dresden’s native Lutheran and Catholic children, dressed in their festive Saxon folk costumes, were aboard a train taking them home after Mardi Gras parties at different points in the far-flung city.
Still merry from the night’s festivities, they cavorted on the train prior to Ash Wednesday, February 14, and the solemnities that would be observed even in wartime, in memory of the passion and death of Jesus. In the sky Allied fighter planes caught sight of the civilian train and opened fire on the children inside, whose blood was soon pouring out of the wreckage.
This carnage registers almost not at all in the American mind. The holocaust in Dresden, lasting two days and killing at least 100,000 people, like the atomic holocaust in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, usually merits not much more than a few sentences or a single paragraph in the back pages of metropolitan newspapers, unlike “Yom HaShoah (יום השואה) Holocaust Remembrance Day,” in April, which is observed with countless civic, educational and media events, hosannahs, apologies and genuflections, from the Vatican to the White House. The barely remembered German and Japanese victims of Allied war crimes were of the wrong race and religion.
In the spring of 1945, after prosecuting the bombing holocaust against every major German city, and with the end of the Second World War in sight in Europe, Winston Churchill began to consider his reputation in the post-war period, when the 500,000 German innocents he ordered incinerated could come back to haunt him and stain his prestige. On March 28, 1945 he issued a deceitful, back-stabbing memo blaming the mass incineration on his own Bomber Command and by insinuation, upon its commander Arthur Harris, whose force would be denied a post-war campaign medal, and Harris a peerage.
Harris and Bomber Command had been only following Winston Churchill’s explicit orders, yet Churchill attempted to shift responsibility onto the corps of airmen who had suffered among the highest casualties of any branch of the British military.
Churchill, like many others, endeavored to blame Germany for being the first to saturate civilians with terror-bombs —at Guernica in Spain on behalf of Franco’s forces, and in Rotterdam, during the war with Holland. In both cases Churchill stated that thousands had been killed. Even one death is regrettable of course, but less than 100 people were killed in Guernica according to historian David Irving, and less than a thousand in Rotterdam, when the Luftwafe accidentally struck a margarine factory and the flammable liquid burned houses nearby.
Churchill had said “thousands” died in Guernica, and that 30,000 perished in Rotterdam, which is more than what Deborah Lipstadt says died in the two-day inferno in Dresden (the absurdly low figure of 25,000 is now the officially fixed count to which the “news media” comform without deviation).
The Germans had pledged not to be the first to bomb civilian centers in Britain. Churchill had hoped they would carpet bomb London to give him the excuse to silence the large peace movement in England which was dogging him in 1940, at a time when the Germans had not dropped a single bomb on London, almost a year after Britain had declared war on Germany.
The British Prime Minister obtained his pretext toward the end of August, 1940, when a lone, wayward German bomber “lost its way flying up the Thames” river. It had orders to attack an oil refinery, but instead dropped its bombs on London’s East End. No one was killed thankfully, but Churchill was elated.
He had the excuse he needed to massively retaliate against Berlin, knowing Hitler would respond in kind, and that the British peace movement would vanish in the smoke and flames of the “Battle of Britain” and the “Blitz.” Churchill ordered a hundred bombers to attack Berlin. Royal Air Force (RAF) commanders warned him that the Luftwaffe would do the same to London.
At this juncture we pause to contemplate the bloody treason that was at the heart of Churchill’s soul: he wanted as many of his own English civilians in London to die as possible, so he could point to their deaths as the justification for a total war against Germany, and he succeeded in his objective.
Some of the victims of the Allied holocaust in Dresden
To this day the war crime the leaders of Britain and the United States perpetrated in Dresden is justified on the basis of the tired fable that “Germany did it first to Rotterdam and Guernica,” and “Look at the terror the Germans visited upon London.” Nothing that occurred in Guernica, Rotterdam, or for that matter London, begins to even approach the scale of the holocaust that the firebombs of the air forces of Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt inflicted on Dresden.
On September 4, 1940 Hitler gave a speech in which he stated that if the “mad drunkard” Churchill continued to attack Berlin, the Germans were not going to stand by and take it. It was Neanderthal thinking on the führer’s part: you club me over the head and I will club you. Hitler was almost always outfoxed by the clever machinations of the masonic treachery at the heart of Britain’s ruling class.
No matter what Churchill ordered, Hitler should have limited his air campaign to British military sites and munitions factories (the Luftwaffe never bothered to attack the factories that built Britain’s Lancaster bombers).
On September 6 the English people heard the ominous drone of a fleet of Luftwaffe bombers flying up the Thames. Some 3,000 Londoners subsequently died. Now Churchill had what he wanted. You won’t find these facts in the multi-volume history he wrote, or in the pages of the work of the conformist historians. To learn the truth one must read and study the revisionists, particularly the demonized David Irving, the preeminent military historian of World War II in the Atlantic theatre.
Irving’s nemesis, Deborah Lipstadt meanwhile, has taken it upon herself to deny the holocaust casualty figure of 100,000 for Dresden, but God help any one of us who would have the temerity to doubt the Six Million casualty figure of Holocaustianity, or even to apply the word “holocaust” to what happened in Dresden.
I challenge any reader to collect the legacy media’s descriptions of the bombing of Dresden from the 1990s onward and count how many term it a holocaust.
The extent to which we are imprisoned in an Orwellian dystopia of our own making is revealed when we consider the fact that it is regarded as highly insensitive or indeed “anti-Semitic” to violate the self-appointed Newspeak holocaust trademark appropriated by the Holy People, and apply it to the German cities that were incinerated, or to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, even though those war crimes were genuine holocausts by dictionary definition: “Destruction or slaughter on a mass scale, especially caused by fire. Origin: Greek holokauston, from holos ‘whole’ and kaustos ‘burned.”
Even in the liturgy of Holocaustianity it is not decreed that most Judaic victims of the Nazis perished by fire. A half-million German civilians and three-quarters of a million Japanese civilians (including the victims of the fire-bombing of Toyko), were indeed burned to death, yet it is a thought crime to say so. Tell me we are not all cowards for allowing truth itself to be forbidden. We live in Talmudic times.
This writer is sometimes accused, as a researcher in the field of the Babylonian Talmud, of seeing the Talmud where it is not. It is not so much the Talmudic texts themselves that we observe in our society, but the results of their influence. The single most remarkable dimension of Talmudic halacha is its narcissistic exceptionalism, born of the self-worship it inculcates.
Prof. Lipstadt, who has made an career out of stigmatizing anyone who doubts any aspect of the “Holocaust” narrative, as a diabolic “Holocaust denier,” is free to deny, without negative consequences, the holocaust in Dresden, because of her exceptional status as one of the Holy People. She may do as she likes with history, in ways that the rest of us may not. For that reason alone we cannot respect the religion of Holocaustianity.
It is not history. It is a product of Talmudic megalomania. Few of us tolerate fanatical egoism from Catholics, Protestants or Muslims. The very idea raises our secular indignation and “Separation of Church (or Mosque) and State!” is our cry, in the face of it. But to shout “Separation of Synagogue and State!” in nations where Holocaustianity is the last truly believed state religion in the otherwise agnostic West, would be unthinkable for anyone who valued their reputation, employment, personal safety, or in Europe, freedom from incarceration.
Beyond the “Jew and gentile” entanglement is the fratricide: Churchill and his top military circle were not Judaic, yet they set afire the medieval cities of their German cousins, who only two generations before had comprised the royal blood within the House of the German-speaking Queen Victoria.
A thousand years of national and religious wars in Europe had not managed to wreak the destruction which Mr. Churchill and U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt directed against the cultural treasure houses of western civilization, in cities like Dresden. They tossed a match into Dresden as casually as a drooling meth addict would torch an apartment building for revenge on the landlord who had evicted him.
Yet “conservative Christian” American university professors and administrators in institutions of higher learning such as Michigan’s esteemed Hillsdale College, which is the recipient of millions of dollars in donations from “Conservatives” seeking to preserve western civilization, have hallowed Churchill into a paragon of decency, courage and western leadership. This view of this mass murdering vandal is such a defect of vision as to be fatal spiritually, culturally and politically on a national scale.
If the powers that be decided, for example, that Russia needed to be fire-bombed, given sufficient pretext our “Conservatives” would do it all over again in the name of “civilization.” The blood of the innocent in Moscow and St. Petersburg would signify no more to the Hillsdale College type of crusaders than the charred bodies of the civilians in the apocalyptic wreckage of Dresden.
American civilization in 2018 is not worthy of the name. We have the illusion of a civilization, which we cherish for our own aggrandizement and nostalgia. “Conservative” America has made common cause with the Talmudic mentality, as did Antonin Scalia, another of its plaster saints.
At the start of Lent 2018, seventy-three years after the Allies’ mass murder in Dresden, we inhabit the money changer’s house, where Christ on the Cross is sold not just for a buck, but for a bucket of Talmudic vindication.
Source: The Unz Review
Margot Robbie’s self-confessed ambition has made her the highest paid actress of the year | Culture
Self-doubt is Margot Robbie’s greatest motivator, and competes with ambition in the Australian actress’s psyche. She couldn’t believe her own eyes when she first saw herself on a giant ad for the Pan Am TV series in New York’s Times Square. “I still have the photo,” she told EL PAÍS a few years ago, somewhat wistful for the days when she was still a nobody. The script of The Wolf of Wall Street (2013), the Martin Scorsese film that put her on the map, touted her as “the most beautiful blonde in the world,” but she didn’t believe the hype. “I remember saying to a friend, ‘I haven’t worked in six weeks.’ I’m sure there’s nothing out there for me,” laughed Robbie. But Hollywood didn’t share her skepticism. In July, Variety magazine ranked Robbie as the highest paid actress of the year when her US$12.5 million salary for the upcoming Barbie movie was announced.
Margot Robbie may be this year’s highest paid actress, but 17 men made even more money, led by Tom Cruise who was paid US$100 million for Top Gun: Maverick. Her Barbie love interest, Ryan Gosling, was paid the same as Robbie, even though she has the titular role, more evidence that pay parity in Hollywood is far from being a reality. Robbie ranked ahead of Millie Bobby Brown (US$10 million for the Enola Holmes sequel); Emily Blunt (US$4 million for Oppenheimer); Jamie Lee Curtis (US$3.5 million for Halloween Ends); and Anya Taylor-Joy (US$1.8 million for Furiosa).
Robbie’s misgivings about her career aren’t shared by other industry giants. Martin Scorsese compared her to Carole Lombard for her comedic genius, Joan Crawford for her toughness, and Ida Lupino for her emotional range. He described Robbie as having a surprising audacity, and recalls how she clinched her role in The Wolf of Wall Street by stunning everyone with a tremendous, improvised slap of Leonardo DiCaprio during her audition.
Robbie showed the same boldness when she lobbied director Quentin Tarantino for another role opposite DiCaprio in Once Upon a Time in… Hollywood (2019). She sent the director a letter telling him how much she admired his films, especially her all-time favorite, True Romance (1993). The letter probably wasn’t necessary, as Tarantino already had the I, Tonya star in mind to play Sharon Tate in his new movie, describing her to EL PAÍS as an actress with a visual dynamism and personal qualities that you don’t see every day.
Robbie has wanted to work in movies ever since her start in Neighbours, the long-running Australian TV series that is coming to an end after 9,000 episodes and 37 years on the air. “Of course I’m ambitious. My career motivates me. I came to the United States with a plan, and I’m always looking ahead,” she told us. Even as a child growing up in Queensland (northeastern Australia), Margot Elise Robbie displayed her business smarts and drama queen chops when she decided to sell all her brother’s old toys from the sidewalk in front of the family home.
She jokes about her childhood, but part of that little girl always comes out in the wide variety of characters she plays. She has had all kinds of roles in little-known films like Suite Française and Z for Zachariah, and also in box-office hits like Suicide Squad and Birds of Prey. She won Oscar nominations for playing driven women in I, Tonya (2018) and Bombshell (2020). “Yes, many of the women I’ve played share my ambition – this is a tough industry. But I’m full of doubt like anyone else. You never know how things will turn out,” she said.
Seeking more control over her films, Robbie founded production company LuckyChap Entertainment in 2014 with her husband, British filmmaker Tom Ackerley, and some friends. She hopes to use LuckyChap as a vehicle for herself and other actresses, as she did with Promising Young Woman starring Carey Mulligan, a black comedy thriller film that won writer/director Emerald Fennell an Oscar for best original screenplay. “Margot is an extraordinary person,” said Fennell. “That’s why she’s doing so well as a producer who is determined to try different things and give women a voice.”
Robbie met British assistant director Tom Ackerley on the set of Suite Française in 2013. They began a romantic relationship the next year and moved in together right after attending their first Golden Globes gala for The Wolf of Wall Street. Married since 2016, the couple and co-workers in LuckyChap have a bright future ahead, judging by all the work that is piling up for Robbie. In addition to Barbie, she will appear in Amsterdam, directed by David O. Russell; as silent film star Clara Bow in Babylon, directed by Damien Chazelle; and has a role in Wes Anderson’s Asteroid City. As if that wasn’t enough to keep Robbie busy, a remake of Ocean’s Eleven awaits her; she will play opposite Matthew Schoenaerts in the post WWII drama, Ruin; produce a remake of Tank Girl; and play a female Jack Sparrow in another installment of Pirates of the Caribbean. Surely Margot Robbie doesn’t have any more doubts about her career.
Salem’s last witch regains her honor | Culture
As statues of slave owners and slave traders continue to fall in the United States, the embers of the bonfires that burned women accused of committing spells and witchcraft are also being extinguished. In the umpteenth revision of history to try to exonerate the victims, the most recent episode concerns the last official Salem witch, Elizabeth Johnson Jr., from the massive 1692 and 1693 trials in the English colony of Massachusetts. Thanks to the initiative of a middle school teacher and her students in Andover, located in the same county as Salem, her spirit can now roam free. The enthusiastic students began the vindication process in 2020 and persuaded Massachusetts state senator Diana DiZoglio (D), who took up the cause and pushed for Johnson’s pardon, which was announced last week.
It has taken 329 years for Elizabeth Johnson Jr.’s name to be cleared definitively. She was the last of the Salem witches to be exonerated. While Johnson was spared a death by hanging, she was stigmatized until she died at 77, an uncommonly long life for the time. Historians say that Johnson showed signs of mental instability and was single and childless, all of which were signs of witchcraft during that period. She pled guilty before the court of inquisitors. Almost 30 members of her extended family were also implicated, as if witchcraft were contagious, hereditary, or both. Johnson, her mother, several aunts and her grandfather, a church pastor, were tried as well. According to historian Emerson Baker, the author of a book about the Salem witch trials, her grandfather described Johnson to the judges as a “simplish person at best.” Most likely, the judges would have equated “simplish” with different during that superstitious and pre-scientific period.
The fact that Johnson didn’t have any descendants deprived her of anyone to vindicate her good name, as relatives of the other defendants did. The first attempt to do so happened at the beginning of the eighteenth century. Then, in the 1950s, Massachusetts passed a law exonerating those found guilty, but it failed to gather all the names. A 2001 attempt at justice excluded Johnson because, after her conviction in 1693, she was formally presumed to be dead (executed).
The social hysteria against everything that deviated from the norm, against the minimal exercise of free will, was implacable against women, as Arthur Miller’s play The Crucible (the playwright adapted it for the big screen in 1996) and recent variations remind us. The theme lends itself very well to artistic creation, but in real life it amounted to opprobrium for those who suffered it and represented a cause for scorn among puritans.
Salem was more than a witch trial. According to historians, it was a collective exorcism fueled by a puritanical inquisition based on paranoia and xenophobia, a gratuitous auto de fe that unleashed people’s worst instincts: fear and the human tendency to blame others for one’s own misfortunes. At least 172 people were indicted in the 1692 trial. About 35% confessed their guilt and were spared the gallows; according to sources, around twenty insisted on claiming their innocence and did not escape that fate. The rest of the detainees were acquitted or sentenced to prison. The Salem witch trials represented a collective bogeyman through which one can foresee the later threat of the Ku Klux Klan. It is hard not to wonder what bonfires would have burned today on the pyre of social media and extreme polarization.
The great Salem witch hunt can be re-read through the prism of gender. As the adage goes, se non è vero è ben trovato (Even if it is not true, it is well conceived). Witches, like those in Salem and the woman in Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel The Scarlet Letter (made into a film in the 1950s), were demonized for going off the rails. The dominant society’s puritanical stance against any kind of heterodoxy or freestyling, against rebels with or without a cause, led people to be targeted for dressing exotically by puritanical standards or for daring to drink at a tavern, a sacrilege for the morals of the day. It’s not difficult to draw a straight line from the bonnet of a witch on the gallows to the handmaid’s white bonnet in Margaret Atwood’s novel: all were women who were demonized, objectified, and scapegoated for deeper ills.
Beyond gender, other historians emphasize the socioeconomic dimension of the Salem witch trials, which combined a deep-seated inequality with racism, the United States’ original sin since well before the Declaration of Independence. The trials targeted colonial society’s most vulnerable during a period of economic instability that unleashed fierce rivalry among Salem families. According to historian Edward Bever, society was permeated by interpersonal conflict, much of it stemming from competition over resources. People did whatever they could to survive, from physical aggression to threats, curses, and insults. One of the first women accused, Sarah Osborne, was a poor widow who dared to claim her husband’s land for herself, defying the customary laws of nature, which granted the inheritance to sons. The accusation of witchcraft ended Osborne’s claim. Tituba, an indigenous slave, was accused of being a witch because her racial origins differed from the norm. Sarah Good was also poor, but she defended herself against the humiliations of her neighbors, which led her to the gallows; her daughter, Dorothy Dorcas Good, was Salem’s youngest victim: she was arrested at only four years old and spent eight months in prison.
Since then, history has not changed the fact that vulnerable women pay the price for circumstances beyond their control. That the Puritans of the time considered women—the evil heirs of Eve —prone to temptations such as the desire for material possessions or sexual gratification was only an added factor. Poor, homeless, and childless, these women in the shadow of society’s dominant morality were fodder for the gallows. But Elizabeth Johnson Jr. didn’t just manage to save her life; 329 years later she recovered her honor as well.
Meridian Brothers: A fake salsa band ignites the rebirth of an old New York record label | Culture
A new album will land on the salsa dance floor by the end of this week; one that fuses rhythms from the 1970s with the technological dystopias of the future. Behind it is Ansonia Records, a label that, after its creation in 1949 among Latino immigrants from New York, would produce several merengue, jibara, bomba, guaracha, mambo, and boogaloo albums, before stopping altogether in 1990. This Friday, after more than 30 years, Ansonia Records will return with a salsa album.
Hermano del futuro, vengo buscando iluminación; brother from the future, I come looking for enlightenment. So says one of the songs from the new album, called Metamorfosis, by the old salsa group Renacimiento. But there is a catch: Renacimiento does not exist. It never did. It is a fake group, and this is a fake cover, explains musician Eblis Álvarez, founder of the Colombian group Meridian Brothers, who had already experimented with various genres, from cumbia to vallenato. A group that practices “tropical cannibalism,” says Álvarez. This year, Meridian Brothers decided to launch a group of salseros straight out of fiction: Renacimiento.
“Renacimiento [rebirth] is the typical name that musicians would give a salsa group in the 1970s,” Álvarez tells EL PAÍS. “For example, in the Nueva Trova movement there was talk of a political rebirth, but at the same time they combined this with a spiritual factor: when one listens to groups like La Columna de Fuego [from Bogota] or Los Jaivas [from Chile], there was a common pattern: everyone was waiting for a rebirth of the soul, and of society.”
Although on stage Renacimiento is made up of five artists — María Valencia, Alejandro Forero, César Quevedo and Mauricio Ramírez, besides Álvarez — when the album was recorded it was the founder who played all the instruments, besides doing the voice of the salsero that accompanies the songs. The album has nine tracks, some similar to the older, slower salsa, and others to the faster, contemporary style. Between the piano, the timbales and the percussion, we find verses with the concerns of the 21st century: love that “communicates by algorithm,” or the threats of atomic bombs that “take us to the cemetery.” Metamorfosis, the single that has already been released, begins with a man who wakes up turned into a robot and longs for a time “when nightclubs really had an atmosphere, not like now, full of cameras, full of drones.”
“I wanted it to sound like salsa from the 1970s,” says Álvarez. “There is no originality, or the originality of this lies in being able to replicate the music as best as possible, but in terms of the material there is nothing original, as it is made with the collective unconscious of Latin America, of Colombia, of Latinos. This is an extrapolation from the 1970s to today, and it speaks of transhumanism, like the matter of highest concern that everything, absolutely everything, is now packed inside the damn cell phone.”
The rebirth includes both the album and the label, as this is the first recording in more than 30 years to be released by Ansonia Records, a company created in 1949 and later forgotten, despite having been one of the first labels founded by a Latin migrant in the United States. Puerto Rican Rafael Pérez, its founder, brought Dominican, Puerto Rican and Cuban musicians from Latin Harlem or the South Bronx, who had not found a home among American record companies, to several studios. He produced his records before the time of the powerful Fania, which made New York salsa famous.
To Liza Richardson, an American radio host who was also a music supervisor on series like Narcos or the movie Y tu mamá también, Ansonia Records is a gem. In the early 1990s, she found an Ansonia album in the station’s archives and, fascinated by the label’s production, became close to the heirs of Pérez. In 2020, she bought the record label with the intention of reactivating it. She, with the help of a small team, has begun to digitize more than 5,000 Ansonia-produced songs; an eighth of them can already be found on streaming platforms like Spotify.
Souraya Al-Alaoui, manager of Ansonia Records, explains that most of the artists chosen by the label were focused on the Latin American diaspora. That was their base; they valued the traditional sounds from islands like Cuba or Puerto Rico, and were not looking to become westernized.
“Johnny Pacheco, founder of La Fania, started with Ansonia Records, and Ansonia was an inspiration for what would later become La Fania,” says Al-Alaoui. “Ansonia was also a pioneer as a label owned by a Latino, an independent label with a founding message: ‘this is from us and for us.’ That’s why it was an inspiration for what came after.”
Over the years, La Fania grew and the seed of Ansonia Records faded away. The label never managed to promote its musicians in concerts like La Fania did, and after the arrival of the digital world, they did not set up a website or try to upload their music to any streaming platforms. Thus, it became a label that was only known by a small group of music lovers, like Liza Richardson and Eblis Álvarez.
“Now, we are hoping to release a new record every year, and we are thrilled to start with this one by Meridian Brothers,” says Richardson. “This is an album that looks to the past but tries to move towards the future, and that is exactly what we are trying to do: look to the past to, at some point, be able to grow again, to thrive.”
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