Jesurgislac’s Journal

January 25, 2009

Ex-Nazi ex-excommunicates Holocaust denier

Jesus Christ, you really couldn’t make it up, could you? Pope Benedict, who was a member of Hitler Youth during the last years of the Third Reich, has yesterday reversed the excommunication of Bishop Richard Williamson, who believes that it is impossible that the Nazis could have killed six million Jews in gas chambers and cremated them.

Williamson, now once more accepted as a Roman Catholic, said in a TV interview last November that he feels there has been a “huge exploitation” of the claim that six million Jews were gassed – which, he is at pains to tell the interviewer, he is certain is not true. He’s “not interested” in being called an anti-Semite, either. It’s not a matter of emotion, he says. (view the video here) He has a pleasant, polite, very English voice. And Pope Benedict, God’s rottweiler, wants him back.) For the record, Williamson believes it may be true that “several thousand” Jews were killed by the Nazis. But not six million. And there were no gas chambers. No crematoria. He’s sure of that.

Ruth Gledhill at the Times:

Bishop Richard Williamson is a hardline ultra-conservative bishop of the Society of St Pius X. He is excommunicated from the RC church, along with his three brother SSPX bishops but as we report, and also according to reports coming out of Rome, the excommunications could be lifted soon by the Pope. It could even be lifted by Sunday, according to the usually reliable Rorate Caeli. And that while he faces possible prosecution for Holocaust denial in Germany after an interview with a reporter from Swedish TV in which he claimed that six million Jews did not die in the Holocaust, merely a few thousand, and that the gas chambers did not exist. CathCon has the translation of the Der Spiegel report and more on the likely lifting of those excommunications. Could the clock really be turned back this far on Nostra Aetate and the teachings of Vatican II?

The response of the Lefebvrist Society of St Pius X was telling:

Although it had been understood that the interview would deal with religious issues only, the reporter asked the bishop’s opinion concerning historical matters. It is obvious that a bishop can only speak about questions of faith and morals with any ecclesiastical authority. If he deals with secular issues, he is personally responsible for his own private opinions. The Society I am governing has no authority to address such issues, nor will it ever claim such authority. -Bishop Bernard Fellay, 21st January 2009, via

From the Independent, October 1999, back when Pope John Paul II was trying to have the first Nazi Pope sainted, on Pius XII (who canonized Pope Pius X):

a single-minded Vatican lawyer and diplomat who, from the earliest part of his career, set out to establish the absolute authority of Rome over Europe’s Catholic populations in a series of accommodations with autocratic regimes. Having served as papal nuncio in Germany throughout the 1920s before becoming the Vatican’s chief diplomat, Eugenio Pacelli was in a unique position to negotiate with the Nazis over the church’s status. The deal that was cut guaranteed Catholic influence over education and spiritual life in Germany, but at a terrible price: the Catholic Centre Party was forced into dissolution, removing the last obstacle to Hitler’s goal of absolute power, and all attempts at resistance by Germany’s Catholic bishops were cut off at the knees.

The so-called Reichskonkordat, between the Vatican and Germany, handed the Nazis their first much-needed piece of international recognition and, according to Hitler’s crowing at a subsequent cabinet meeting, opened the way to undertake “the urgent struggle against international Jewry”. The concordat was celebrated in St Hedwig’s cathedral in Berlin with swastikas flying alongside the Catholic banners and the “Horst Wessel” song, the Nazis’ unofficial anthem, blaring out from loudspeakers to the thousands that had assembled outside.Cornwell shows that Pius XII’s attitude to Jews was ambivalent at best, unearthing letters from his early career in Germany in which he refuses favours to the Jewish community on the most pusillanimous of grounds and describes the Munich chapter of the German Communist Party as being chaotic, filthy and full of Jews. He refers dismissively to “a group of young women, of dubious appearance, Jews like all the rest of them” and describes the Communist leader Max Levien as a Jew, “pale, dirty, with drugged eyes, hoarse voice, vulgar, repulsive…”

When, during the war, he came to learn of the extermination of millions of Jews, he made only the vaguest of references to the slaughter in a 1942 Christmas message – making no mention of either anti-Semitism or the Jews – and concentrated instead on developing his inner spirituality, commissioning a film called Pastor Angelicus to show off his reflective, fiercely ascetic nature.”It is very sad,” the then British ambassador to the Holy See, Francis D’Arcy Osborne, wrote in a letter unearthed by Cornwell. “The fact is that the moral authority of the Holy See, which Pius XI and his predecessors had built up into a world power, is now sadly reduced.” link (more here)

In September 2008, Pope Benedict spoke at a symposium in honour of Pope Pius XII on the 50th anniversary of his death, praising his predecessor.

Ruth Gledhill asks if this means the Catholic Church is reversing the Vatican II reforms. Yes: both Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict have made clear over the decades, Benedict both as head of the Papal Inquisition as well as Pope, they don’t like the Vatican II concept of the Catholic Church: they like Pius XII’s concept of the Church as a fascist authority, working in concert with other fascist authorities, to rule over the people. Bishop Williamson belongs in Pope Benedict’s church.

10 Comments »

  1. You complain about someone falsifying history, and then you call Pius XII a “Nazi pope” and Benedict XVI an “ex-Nazi”. As well as being slanderous, your remarks as a whole suggest a certain confusion about whether telling lies about history is acceptable.

    Comment by Frank — January 25, 2009 @ 4:30 pm | Reply

  2. As well as being slanderous

    technically, libellous: *nit-pick*

    Thanks for your concern about my legal status.

    While the libel laws in the UK are more stringent than in most parts of the world, it would certainly be educative for Pope Benedict, or rather his Vatican lawyers, to have to explain in open court how being an ex-member of Hitler Youth is substantively different from being an ex-Nazi. I somehow doubt this is going to happen.

    Whether or not Pius XII was an active Nazi sympathizer after he became Pope – he was certainly one prior to his ascent to the Papacy in 1939 – or merely a moral coward who knew that Jews were being murdered by the Nazis but preferred not to speak out against this atrocity, not even as bluntly as he spoke out against the massacre of non-Jewish Polish victims by the Nazis (and no one, of course, spoke out against the murder of gay men, transgendered people, and lesbians, by the Nazis: then and for decades afterwards that part of the Holocaust was considered a perfectly acceptable action), I’m happy to be able to inform you that such discussion is considered a debate about a historical figure, not an issue of slander or libel: libel is a legal defense for the living against being traduced, if they can prove it so, not a means of silencing discussion about the dead.

    I do not consider it acceptable to smooth over the historical record – Pope Benedict’s membership of Hitler Youth, Pope Pius’s public anti-Semitism – just because some people would rather think only nice things about current and past Popes.

    Comment by jesurgislac — January 25, 2009 @ 9:01 pm | Reply

  3. I used “slander” in the sense of Catholic moral theology, not law. I am not terribly interested in whether or not what you wrote is illegal; I know for a fact that it is not true. Bishop Williamson’s remarks may be obscene, but the two of you are closer than you might think in both being willing to distort history for the sake of ideology.

    Comment by Frank — January 26, 2009 @ 12:02 am | Reply

  4. I used “slander” in the sense of Catholic moral theology, not law.

    Fair enough: I wasn’t aware of the distinction. Thanks for the explanation and the link.

    I am not terribly interested in whether or not what you wrote is illegal; I know for a fact that it is not true.

    You know for a fact that Ratzinger was not a member of the Hitler Youth? Or you know for a fact that Pius XII was a fervent and outspoken opponent of the Nazi holocaust during the 1940s? Which?

    the two of you are closer than you might think in both being willing to distort history for the sake of ideology.

    Pot, kettle, black. Y

    Comment by jesurgislac — January 26, 2009 @ 12:10 am | Reply

  5. You called Benedict XVI an “ex-Nazi”, and Pius XII a “Nazi Pope”.

    Being a member of the Hitler Youth (which Pope Benedict was against his own, and his family’s, wishes) does not make one a Nazi, as you could discover for yourself by reading mainstream social histories of Nazi Germany. Membership became mandatory for all young Germans in December 1936.

    As for Pius XII being “a Nazi Pope” – this is simply anti-historical nonsense. Not even John Cornwell, author of Hitler’s Pope – itself a violently critical account of Pius’ actions – would go so far as to suggest he was a Nazi, or even had political sympathy with National Socialism. Again, read the historical writing on the subject. Whether inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt or not for his alleged “public silence”, no mainstream historian pretends he was a Nazi.

    It is all very well to criticise Bishop Williamson for perpetrating grotesque offences against historical truth. The criticism would be more powerful if you refrained from committing them yourself.

    Comment by Frank — January 26, 2009 @ 1:26 am | Reply

  6. The ONLY reason the Catholic hierarchy has gotten away with its complicity in the Jewish Holocaust is IGNORANCE and my guess is that sooner or later, the truths which I have uncovered and revealed at my http://JesusWouldBeFurious.Org/RCscandal are going to reverberate around the world and throughout history. Maybe YOU can help speed up that day by helping to spread the word.

    Comment by Rev. David Dubuque — January 26, 2009 @ 1:40 am | Reply

  7. You called Benedict XVI an “ex-Nazi”, and Pius XII a “Nazi Pope”.

    Yes. I fully admit: I could not resist the headline “ex-Nazi ex-excommunicates Holocaust Denier”. And, whatever excuses Pope Benedict may offer that he just couldn’t help himself, Hitler-Jugend was, in fact, a paramilitary wing of the Nazi Party – and, though the Benedict family claim it was not possible for them to resist, in fact people did resist joining the H-J. cite, cite. Of course Benedict says he was never an enthusiastic Nazi, he just went along with it because he had to: once the war was over, that’s exactly what most Nazi Party members did say.

    As for Pius XII being “a Nazi Pope” – this is simply anti-historical nonsense.

    Well, you’re kind of right there, actually. No one ever suggested Pius joined the Nazi party. He did, however, ensure that the Catholic Church and the Nazi Party would work in harmony together in Germany, as he worked for the ideal of Church and state together under fascist governance elsewhere in Europe. (There’s a reason why the Catholic Church is so unpopular in Spain today: the church hierarchy was always with Franco.) He did make anti-Semitic comments about Jews; he did fail to speak out against the Jewish Holocaust, and washed his hands of the thousand or Jews in Rome who were rounded up and taken away by the Nazis. I do not intend to specify that by “Nazi Pope” he was a member of the Nazi party: but that he was a sympathiser and supporter when they were in power, that is the historical record: as is the record that he did nothing to help even the Jews of Rome, before they were taken away to be killed.

    The criticism would be more powerful if you refrained from committing them yourself.

    I don’t think my short-hand description of Pius XII is in any way comparable to the distortion of your attempts to whitewash his record. I repeat: pot, kettle, black. Your criticism of the term “Nazi Pope” would be more effective if you weren’t trying to deny his involvement with the Nazi party as a Catholic prelate pre-WWII, and his – at least, moral cowardice, if not complicity – during WWII.

    Comment by jesurgislac — January 26, 2009 @ 3:07 am | Reply

  8. You called Benedict XVI an “ex-Nazi”, and Pius XII a “Nazi Pope”.

    Yes. I fully admit: I could not resist the headline “ex-Nazi ex-excommunicates Holocaust Denier”. And, whatever excuses Pope Benedict may offer that he just couldn’t help himself, Hitler-Jugend was, in fact, a paramilitary wing of the Nazi Party – and, though the Benedict family claim it was not possible for them to resist, in fact people did resist joining the H-J. cite, cite. Of course Benedict says he was never an enthusiastic Nazi, he just went along with it because he had to: once the war was over, that’s exactly what most Nazi Party members did say.

    As for Pius XII being “a Nazi Pope” – this is simply anti-historical nonsense.

    Well, you’re kind of right there, actually. No one ever suggested Pius joined the Nazi party. He did, however, ensure that the Catholic Church and the Nazi Party would work in harmony together in Germany, as he worked for the ideal of Church and state together under fascist governance elsewhere in Europe. (There’s a reason why the Catholic Church is so unpopular in Spain today: the church hierarchy was always with Franco.) He did make anti-Semitic comments about Jews; he did fail to speak out against the Jewish Holocaust, and washed his hands of the thousand or Jews in Rome who were rounded up and taken away by the Nazis. I do not intend to specify that by “Nazi Pope” he was a member of the Nazi party: but that he was a sympathiser and supporter when they were in power, that is the historical record: as is the record that he did nothing to help even the Jews of Rome, before they were taken away to be killed.

    The criticism would be more powerful if you refrained from committing them yourself.

    I don’t think my short-hand description of Pius XII is in any way comparable to the distortion of your attempts to whitewash his record. I repeat: pot, kettle, black. Your criticism of the term “Nazi Pope” would be more effective if you weren’t trying to deny his involvement with the Nazi party as a Catholic prelate pre-WWII, his open anti-Semitism, and his – at least, moral cowardice, if not complicity – during WWII.

    Comment by jesurgislac — January 26, 2009 @ 3:07 am | Reply

  9. I did not know that Holocaust revisionism meant you were unable to be a member of the Catholic church. I disagree with his belief that “thousands” rather than millions died, but why should that fact mean he can’t be a Catholic? Why can’t he be re-admitted to the Church? Why is it relevant? Seems to be a secular matter…

    You’ll also recall that is excommunication was not related to the Nazis or any of that crap. He was excommunicated automatically for violating canon law when he was consecrated in an “unauthorized” manner.

    And thanks to Frank for pointing out the ridiculous hyperbole used in the post that jsurgislac seems to have recognized was pretty silly.

    Comment by PrivatePigg — January 26, 2009 @ 7:15 am | Reply

  10. I disagree with his belief that “thousands” rather than millions died, but why should that fact mean he can’t be a Catholic?

    Was there any need for Benedict to re-admit him to the Church? Why was the need so pressing that Benedict decided to ex-excommunicate him right after he had broadcast his belief that the Holocaust is a myth to the world?

    And thanks to Frank for pointing out the ridiculous hyperbole used in the post that jsurgislac seems to have recognized was pretty silly.

    Amusing, shall we say? “Ex-Nazi” is accurate, if not precise, and much shorter than “ex-Hitler-Jugend”. “Nazi Pope” is a perfectly accurate description of Pius XII’s views and actions during WWII.

    Comment by jesurgislac — January 26, 2009 @ 3:18 pm | Reply


RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

The Rubric Theme Blog at WordPress.com.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: