All posts tagged: concentration camps

Elon Musk visits Auschwitz after uproar over antisemitic messages on X

Elon Musk visits Auschwitz after uproar over antisemitic messages on X

[ad_1] KRAKOW, Poland (AP) — Elon Musk, who has been accused of allowing antisemitic messages on his social media platform, X, visited the site of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp on Monday, saying afterwards that the tragedy of the Holocaust “hits you much more in the heart when you see it in person.” Musk toured the most notorious extermination camp established by Nazi Germany during World War II before attending a conference on antisemitism organized by the European Jewish Association in the nearby Polish city of Krakow. He admitted to having been “naïve” about the extent of antisemitism until recently, saying that is because most of his friends are Jewish and he has had little contact with it in his own life. “In the circles that I move, I see almost no antisemitism,” Musk said at the conference in a discussion with Daily Wire podcaster Ben Shapiro. “And, you know, there’s this old joke ‘I’ve got like this one Jewish friend.’ No, I have like two-thirds of my friends are Jewish. I have twice as many …

The Spiky, Unsentimental Visions of Diana Athill

The Spiky, Unsentimental Visions of Diana Athill

[ad_1] One of American fiction’s core preoccupations, these days, seems to be the question of what causes unhappiness. Many of our major writers are earnest anatomists of discontent and its social, psychological, and existential causes. This kind of fiction can be very powerful. Reading about loneliness when you’re lonely can provide both diagnosis and solace; encountering a character trapped by student debt or patriarchal expectation can inspire a sense of camaraderie in a reader facing similar frustrations. But more often than not, contemporary novelists handle their subject matter with immersive seriousness and sincerity—and sincerity, after a while, gets tiring. Misery may love company, but sometimes a miserable person wants cheering up too. If you’re looking to make a little light of sadness, as I have been, the work of Diana Athill might be the perfect place to turn. The legendary writer and editor is one of a loose cadre of 20th-century English and Irish women authors gaining resurgent attention for their brilliantly drawn characters and sharply witty prose; others in this camp include Penelope Fitzgerald, …

Tucker Carlson, the American Face of Authoritarian Propaganda

Tucker Carlson, the American Face of Authoritarian Propaganda

[ad_1] “Axis Sally” was the generic name for women with husky voices and good English who read German and Italian propaganda on the radio during World War II. Like the Japanese women who became collectively known as “Tokyo Rose,” they were trying to reach American soldiers, hoping to demoralize them by telling them their casualties were high, their commanders were bad, and their cause was lost. “A lousy night it sure is,” Axis Sally said on one 1944 broadcast: “You poor, silly, dumb lambs, well on your way to be slaughtered.” Tucker Carlson, who also repeats the propaganda of foreign dictators while speaking English, doesn’t have anything like the historical significance of Axis Sally or Tokyo Rose, though his level of credibility is similar. This is a man who famously wrote texts about his loathing of Donald Trump, even while praising the then-president in public; recently, the former Fox News host kept a straight face while interviewing a convicted fraudster who claimed to have smoked crack and had sex with Barack Obama. But when Carlson …

How Chile Won Back Its Democracy

How Chile Won Back Its Democracy

[ad_1] “There is a graveyard smell to Chile, the fumes of democracy in decomposition,” wrote Edward Korry, the U.S. ambassador to Chile, soon after the 1970 election of the Socialist President Salvador Allende. The United States government, the Brazilian military, and Chilean elites spent the next three years working to destabilize Chile’s left-wing government. Their efforts culminated in a military coup on September 11, 1973—50 years ago today—that deposed Allende and his democratically elected government, and plunged the country into dictatorship. That history made Chile a textbook case of Cold War anti-Communist machinations, but this perspective has tended to overshadow the ways in which Chile is also a study in resistance to autocracy. In 1988, after 17 years under the iron rule of General Augusto Pinochet, the country rose to shrug off the dictatorship through nonviolent mass protests and civil-society mobilization. After a major effort to register voters and restore electoral procedures, Chile achieved a peaceful return to democracy. In standing up to the regime, Chileans took on not only a military that had used …