Welcomed by Switzerland - Ahmadinejad
Photo: AFP

The neutrality of evil

Hanoch Daum writes open letter to Swiss president in wake of meeting with Ahmadinejad

Greetings to the president of Switzerland:


On this important day, we wanted to thank you, all of us, for bothering to mark Holocaust Remembrance Day on Monday, and for choosing to share in our sorrow on this difficult day.


Your countrymen were generous people during the war, and they are also generous today. During the Holocaust, very few Jews managed to escape from Switzerland. In principle, you agreed to take in almost no refugee (being a neutral country and all,) and almost everyone who managed to get in was transferred to detention camps.


With your generosity, and with your famous neutrality, you stood at border crossings and attempted to capture anyone who arrived there, an act that constituted a death sentence. There were also children who made it to your country, mostly from France. You were so nice to them that you put them in camps. You did not integrate them and you did not take care of them, but rather, you closed them off at camps, as if they haven't had enough of that.


Another facet of your kind character, Mr. President, manifested itself through the fact that Hitler's Mein Kampf was a popular book in your country at the time, often offered as a wedding gift (if I'm not mistaken, the book on display at the Yad Vashem Holocaust museum is from Switzerland.)


You were so charming and neutral that assets from the Reich - Jewish assets of course, worth plenty of money - were deposited at your banks. Some of it, including securities and Judaica, are there to this very day.


You are certainly adorable and peace-loving people, Mr. President. For that reason, we were not surprised by the lovely gesture you organized for us Monday. The oh-so-creative idea to invite Iranian President Ahmadinejad to your country and grant him such respectable platform on Holocaust Memorial Day, in order to prove to the world that anti-Semitism has been eliminated, is a wonderful and original idea.


It was truly wonderful to see how, using a clever ploy, you tempted this hateful person to come to Switzerland, just so you can tell the world in a clear voice: "A Holocaust can happen again and there are some people who have not yet given up on the idea of exterminating the people of Israel. There are still states that deny history."


Yet what we failed to understand, Mr. President, is where this practical joke ends. That is, we saw your special meeting with that short and dangerous man, and we saw that Swiss representatives did not walk out when he spoke at the UN conference, and we wondered: When do you in fact intend to tell Iran's president that he is not really a respected guest in your country? When do you plan to tell him that he is part of a sophisticated public relations conspiracy that aimed to expose his real face to the world? Please keep us updated on this matter, so that we don't miss out on the happy ending.


פרסום ראשון: 04.21.09, 17:43
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