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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 11/23/17

Thanksgiving: celebrating the hidden holocaust

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Imagine if the Nazis won the Second World War. Yes, yes, I know there's a TV show about that"---"-but stay with me.

So imagine: the Nazis won, and then every year, on the day when we currently hold Holocaust Remembrance Day, they celebrate with a national holiday called "Eternal Gratefulness for the Fruits of Industry."

In the Nazi national holiday, citizens bizarrely demonstrate no recollection whatsoever of the systematic, bureaucratic state-sponsored persecution and murder of approximately six million Jews.

Instead, they share with each other strange stories of how the German nation overcame all obstacles through generosity and love, manifested in amazing industrial advancements attributed to the wonderous exceptionalism of the German nation. Stories that have literally no resemblance to real Nazi history.

Guess what.

We're the Nazis. We committed acts of genocide, enslavement, mass murder and ethnic cleansing. And we won the war"---"-a war that never really ended. But we carry on as if there's no war.

Except there is a war. And it's not just the Jews and 'the Indians' who are the victims. The war has turned on us. But we still don't see it.

Instead, we sleepwalk into it, perpetrate it on ourselves, in the very act of collectively accumulating hundreds of thousands of air miles pumping colossal quantities of carbon dioxide into an already over-polluted atmosphere, and over-consuming millions of turkeys bred in brutal factory farms"---"-giant animal concentration camps"---"-that would probably make the Nazis mildly proud.

We are at the pinnacle, right now, of a hidden holocaust. So hidden that our national and global culture, fueled by our advertising-driven media system, sanitises this holocaust with pomp and celebration.

The word "holocaust" is a Greek word, which means "sacrifice by fire." It conveys an event, the scale and horror of which, transformed the course of world history.

The Nazi holocaust was, indeed, a uniquely horrific genocide, whose enormity and systematic character is barely imaginable, designed to exterminate wholly the Jewish people, physically, socially, culturally, from the face of the Earth.

The idea of a 'hidden holocaust' conveys an ongoing campaign of global homicide, murder, whose scale and enormity is such that one feels that the word 'holocaust' does, certainly loosely speaking, apply. It is 'hidden', in the sense that, although experienced by millions of people around the world both historically and today, it remains invisible, officially unacknowledged"---"-thanks to a broken media system that fails, chronically, to join the dots.

This 'hidden holocaust', is escalating, accelerating, intensifying; according to all expert projections from the social and physical sciences, it may culminate in the extinction of the human species, unless we take immediate drastic action, now.

The 'hidden holocaust' is not an unfortunate aberration from our civilization, which, perhaps with some choice reform, still represents the peak of human development. Rather, the 'hidden holocaust' is integral to the very structure, values and activities of our civilization. Unless we see this, and transform it, we will all perish in a holocaust of our own making.

The 'hidden holocaust' began at the dawn of modern civilization itself, especially in the pivotal voyages for European colonial expansion and trade from the fifteenth century to the nineteenth centuries. Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, English and other explorers ventured out from their home countries in search of new wealth and new land in all corners of the globe. They went to the continents of America, Africa and Asia and set up colonies and trading outposts.

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Dr Nafeez Ahmed is an investigative journalist, bestselling author and international security scholar. A former Guardian writer, he writes the 'System Shift' column for VICE's Motherboard, and is also a columnist for Middle East Eye. He is the winner of a 2015 Project Censored Award for Outstanding Investigative Journalism for his Guardian work.

Nafeez has also written for The Independent, Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Scotsman, Foreign Policy, The Atlantic, Quartz, Prospect, New (more...)

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