'Did a French Comedian Inspire the Killings at the Jewish Museum in Brussels?'
11:36 AM, May 28, 2014 • By LEE SMITH
At Tablet, French writer Marc Weitzmann explains what is behind the attack at the Jewish Museum in Brussels on Saturday that killed a visiting Israeli couple, a French volunteer at the museum, and a Belgian museum employee. Weitzmann is a well-known novelist, literary critic, screenwriter, and polemicist who has alienated many of his Parisian colleagues with his support for Israel, and previously the U.S.-led war in Iraq. His valuable article here lays bare the roots of Europe’s new anti-Semitism, establishing a genealogy of the massacre beginning with Dieudonné M’Bala M’bala, “the notorious anti-Semitic French comedian.”
Supporters of Dieudonné, explains Weitzmann, include a broad-range of European society. “Young adults of both sexes,” writes Weitzmann,
The French intellectual classes, as Weitzmann shows, are divided. Some have called out Dieudonné and his followers, while others “seem caught between indignation and ridicule.” Paying attention to “such ridiculous figures as Dieudonné,” writes Weitzmann, “seems at best a humiliating and very boring waste of time. Serious people want serious enemies—and French intellectuals are serious people. Unfortunately for them, though, as Chaplin demonstrated a long time ago, maturity and seriousness are not exactly what comes to mind when one watches and hears Adolf Hitler speak in public. And if the 20th century has taught us a lesson, it is that childishness and ridicule are not the opposite of danger; they can be warning signs that the danger is much greater than we are willing to admit.”
Recent Blog Posts