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The Holocaust Industry: Reflections on the explotation of Jewish Suffering Hardcover – Jul 2000


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Verso Books; 1st Edition edition (July 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1859847730
  • ISBN-13: 978-1859847732
  • Product Dimensions: 1.4 x 0.2 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 305,155 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

Review

When I read The Holocaust Industry, I was in the middle of my own investigations of these matters, and I came to the conclusion that he was on the right track. I would now say in retrospect that he was actually conservative, moderate, and that his conclusions are trust-worthy . . . a breakthrough.

About the Author

Norman G. Finkelstein is the author of "A Nation on Trial" (with Ruth Bettina Birn), named a notable book for 1998 by the "New York Times Book Review," and "Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestine Conflict." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

61 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Siriam TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 22 Sep 2007
Format: Hardcover
I have read many books on the Nazi Holocaust and had a growing personal discomfort about the manner in which the non-Jewish element was increasingly marginalised (I must admit that I had a similar feeling when I started learning about the numbers of Asian non-POWS who had been killed in building the Death Railway in Burma in WWII, a feature that is ignored in most books of that event). This feeling was added to when I visited the Holocaust Museum in Washington. Now in this book I have some basis for understanding my discomfort though for reasons I had not envisaged.

Finkelstein's book delivers a very hard hitting analysis of how the Holocaust has been increasingly suborned to a mixture of Jewish American political and religious personal interests and the Israeli pursuit of garnering US support post the 1967 Six Days War, covering key events up to the current day. At times he has a very personal and edgy emotional style in dealing with counter arguments but given the personal abuse and attacks he has suffered from such groups, this adds to the drama of the story he tells. His analysis of the abuses engineered under the Swiss "Nazi Gold" claims alone is worth the price of this book in my mind.

Read and you will not be unmoved even if you disagree certain points.
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198 of 210 people found the following review helpful By Clive Jones on 8 July 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Until comparatively recently, I implicitly accepted the image of the holocaust and its victims that was presented by the mass media. Then, a year ago, I read the Penguin Book of Twentieth-century Speeches, in particular some of what Elie Weisel had to say about the holocaust.
It was clearly exaggerated, sentimentalist nonsense. I began to think a little more independently about the issue, but had nowhere to turn for a more balanced view.
One day, Amazon's recommendations system suggested this book to me, and I bought it at once. Having read it, I'm delighted to be able to recommend it unreservedly as exactly the book I needed.
Finkelstein does not deny the Nazi holocaust, nor the suffering it inflicted on both those it killed, and on those who survived. His contention - persuasively argued - is that their genuine suffering is being debased and abused by the Holocaust "industry" in order to bring political power and huge sums of money to an élite minority.
He also points out that by labelling the Holocaust with false superlatives, one belittles the plight of others who have suffered comparably awful genocide and victimisation, both in World War II and throughout history.
The book is well written. Finkelstein occasionally personalises the debate, or becomes less than dispassionate, but I never once felt this damaged his objectivity. He quotes sources throughout the book - in many cases his opponents are condemned by their own tongues.
It is time the media stopped pandering to the abusive interests of the Holocaust Industry, time they took a more balanced, more critical and less sensationalist view. Billions of dollars are being extorted from governments (even those that can hardly afford it, such as Poland's) by the playing of the Holocaust and anti-Semitism cards. This is unjust.
Buy this book. Read it. Tell your friends about it.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By John P. Jones III TOP 500 REVIEWER on 17 May 2011
Format: Paperback
At a certain level this had to be a very difficult book to write. Professor Finkelstein had to know that he would be pilloried as a "self-hating Jew" for daring to question one of the prevailing orthodoxies of the time: The Holocaust (and it is all too often written in that manner, with the capitals.) But he has impeccable "moral credentials" for writing a book that examines the "industry" that has surrounded the Jewish holocaust. He lost the vast majority of his family in the Nazi death camps, so he certainly is not a "denier." And it was his Jewish mother who instilled the moral principles that were required to tackle this subject. As he said in the Introduction: "But to make out moral distinctions between "our" suffering and "theirs" is itself a moral travesty...In the face of the sufferings of African-Americans, Vietnamese and Palestinians, my mother's credo always was: We are all holocaust victims."

His initial point is how dominate the Jewish holocaust has become in academia and the media. More students can correctly identify the circumstances surrounding the Jewish holocaust than events such as the American Civil War, Pearl Harbor or the atomic bombing of Japan. From this basis of relentless focus on the Jewish holocaust, Finkelstein discusses how others have capitalized on this monstrous and tragic crime for their own purposes. This includes what Finkelstein refers to as "the double shakedown," the pursuit of German companies and Swiss banks whose management was not even alive when the Jewish holocaust occurred. And the proceeds, as the author notes, are all too often NOT used to assist real survivors of this holocaust, but rather fund various other Jewish causes. Tellingly, he relates how real survivors have picketed "reparation" efforts since they receive none of the funds.
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93 of 99 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 25 Feb 2001
Format: Hardcover
With the exception of Noam Chomsky it has been a long time since anyone attempted a deconstruction of an American power elite along the lines of C. Wright Mill's famous study. The present author attempts to step into the breach. Finkelstein is concerned with the relationship between the collective American Jewish self image and how that image is mediated and bolstered through a plethora of devices (from compensation claims to educational trips)originating from the impact of the Nazi Holocaust. Many readers will wince at phrases such as 'organised American Jewry'and one from another source that 'Jews are better', as they have uncomfortable connotations in European life - on occasion I had to check myself from saying only a Jewish academic could make these points. Finkelstein's main arguments are (a) that American Jewry (or that aspect he portrays)has used the tragedy of the Holocaust as a means of morally, and on occasion even financially, terrorising critics into silence, (b) the 'uniqueness' of the Holocaust is to the contrary purely historically relative, and (c) that the suffering of nonJewsish victims of the Nazis has largely been set aside, especially when financial settlements are being pursued. His castigation of various Holocaust organisations as a cynical self serving 'industry' is unstinting, and his contrasting of the reception given to Jewish concerns by successive Administrations, in contrast to Black America's treatment, is grim reading. Finkelstein furnishes copious notes throughout the book, which are very useful. Two subcurrents emerge in the book which are never fully debated (and weaken its central theses to an extent). Firstly Finkelstein argues that 'organised American Jewry' has used the ethnicity of the Holocaust to put itself beyond criticism and inter alia Israel.Read more ›
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