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article imageOp-Ed: The war criminals the Wiesenthal Center won't be hunting

By Alexander Baron     Dec 16, 2011 in World
The announcement by the Simon Wiesenthal Center that it is to mount a last gasp attempt to bring to justice the remaining war criminals of the Nazi era has a curious desideratum - the most notorious war criminal of that era still alive.
Yes, it's Nazi-hunting time again.
Dr Mengele, the running man of the Al Stewart song, drowned in Brazil in 1979, in spite of Simon Wiesenthal claiming personally to have chased him all over the world. The persecution of John Demjanjuk is a matter of historical record. His trial in Israel was described by his courageous lawyer Yoram Sheftel as “a show trial from day one” .
After his conviction on perjured testimony for the crimes of “Ivan the Terrible”, he was sentenced to death, the conviction quashed, and then the persecution started all over again ending with his conviction for entirely different offences. Demjanjuk is now 91 years old, so who does that leave? How about the 95 year old Yitzhak Shamir?
Shamir was born in Poland in October 1915, and during World War II when the Allies were fighting the Nazi menace and making the world safe for democracy, he joined the Stern Gang and started a war within a war. The photograph above is a wanted poster issued by the Palestine Police. Shamir and his fellow terrorist mass murderer Menachem Begin - who died in 1992 - both went on to become Prime Minister of Israel. Theoretically, Shamir could still be indicted by the British Government, not only for murder but for collaborating with the Nazis.
[These inconvenient facts are thoroughly documented, but see for example Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History, by Norman Finkelstein].
The chances of Shamir ever being so indicted are somewhere between zero and minus one, but it may be that his successors aren't so lucky. Not only does Benjamin Netanyahu have blood on his hands from both the Flotilla Massacre and Operation Cast Lead, but there is the little matter of the murder of a certain Mr al Mabhouh in Dubai. But why stop with Israeli terrorist murderers?
There have been calls for many years to indict Tony Blair, and the campaign to indict George W. Bush even has its own domain. Does that mean all our leaders are mass murderers? Not quite, Barack Obama may have rubbed out Osama Bin Laden and that other bloke in a turban, you know, the one who was born in America, but he has carried out one election promise that will save countless American lives, by finally ordering the withdrawal from Iraq. It is arguable that such action warrants the Nobel Peace Prize he was visibly embarrassed to receive, but if nothing else, it may ensure his re-election next year, which in view of the quality of the main opposition candidates, may not be such a bad thing, either for America or for world peace.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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