fbpx

The New Good Germans

Good Germans, of course, is the ironic term given to German citizens who claimed after World War II not to support the Nazi regime but remained silent and made no attempts to show their lack of obedience.
[additional-authors]
February 2, 2023
Jacobs Stock Photography Ltd/Getty Images

The terrorist attack outside of a Jerusalem synagogue Friday evening was the deadliest since 2008. Media coverage was predictable: a sadistic equivalency was made between the seven murdered civilians and the raid on an Islamic Jihad cell in Jenin the day before.

False equivalencies—or worse—are standard operating procedure for leftist media regarding anything to do with Israel. For leftists, the intersection of neo-Marxist theory and anti-Semitism means Israel is always to blame; facts are irrelevant.

What surprised me, though, was that much of the left—including many Jews—ignored the attack entirely. No hashtags, no profile pic changes—no virtue signaling at all; it was as though nothing of note happened last weekend. I used to call this segment of the left status leftists: whatever they may think about an issue in private, their public persona showed a rock solid alliance with neo-Marxists and Islamists: why would they say or do anything that could possibly hurt their highly cultivated status in society?

But given that the attack occurred on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, it does seem appropriate to upgrade status leftists to a new and historic title: the New Good Germans.

Good Germans, of course, is the ironic term given to German citizens who claimed after World War II not to support the Nazi regime but remained silent and made no attempts to show their lack of obedience. That’s not fair, you may be thinking. The original Good Germans knew that if they said or did anything they could be immediately executed.

But there’s another way to look at that. What’s the worst that could happen to a status leftist—a professor, writer, head of a non-profit—who publicly supports Israel? Cancelation? Not so much anymore. Hounded on social media? Who isn’t? Not invited to the most radical chic dinner parties? Ah yes. That could be worse than execution for some.

My point is: the stakes are far lower than in the ‘30s and ‘40s—and yet they still say nothing. Despite the fact that they know that much of the rising anti-Semitism here in the U.S. is a direct result of the wild success of “Palestinianism”—the lies that have allowed the Arabs who call themselves Palestinian to fit nicely into neo-Marxist intersectionality. And yet the leftists who know better would still rather risk having their children being bullied by Islamist anti-Semites than publicly show any support for Israel during these pivotal times.

Why do so many young Jews on campus keep their heads down while Islamist activists shout genocidal mantras? Because their parents have instructed them to. They’ve learned that being able to say that they go to Harvard or Yale is far more important than standing up to lies about Israel or the Holocaust. Their parents have taught them what they consider the most valuable lessons of all: pretense and conformity. Some leftist parents have even begun telling their kids to not write Jewish on their college admissions application.

Hellenistic assimilation, in other words. And because this level of assimilation by so many in positions of power could lead to genocide, then yes: they are today’s Good Germans. These enablers of violence won’t get (immediately) executed, but the rest of us could.

The original Good Germans made obedience into an art form. The New Good Germans put on their double masks (literally and figuratively) and look away. While their neo-Marxist allies call out real liberals for free speech, real liberals continue to call out leftists for their unconscionable silence.

In the summer of 2014, it was the silence of my friends on the left that pushed me to begin focusing on Israel in my work. So I suppose I should offer them a bit of gratitude: if it weren’t for their lack of bravery, I wouldn’t have reconnected with my identity and homeland in such a profound way. And the truth is, I do feel sorry for them: imagine being so insecure that you can’t even come “out” as a Zionist.

But more than anything, it’s both terrifying and sad. Assimilation has never ended well for the Jewish people. The silence of status leftists has already enabled the Democratic Party to move to an anti-Israel extreme—both in policies and rhetoric. Yes, some Jews have left the party because of it. But most have stayed, rationalizing the betrayal of our people by focusing on the titles they’ve acquired and the cocktail parties they’ve been invited to.

Like the original Good Germans, their consciences were turned off a long time ago.


Karen Lehrman Bloch is editor in chief of White Rose Magazine.

Did you enjoy this article?
You'll love our roundtable.

Editor's Picks

Latest Articles

A Walk to Tel Aviv

May we have the awareness to notice and give thanks for the blessings already here. May we have the resilience to trust that better days will come again.

The Real Danger of AI

If you can’t tell the difference between authentic, profound human expression and machine-produced writing, then the fault lies not in the machine but in us.

More news and opinions than at a
Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.