“O you who believe, when an unrighteous man brings you news, look carefully into it, lest you harm a people in ignorance, then be sorry for what you did.” – Holy Quran 49:6
The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan has been accused of being anti-Semitic for over thirty years. This false charge has been so powerful that it has been recycled and has lasted for decades while having even more misconstrued words added each year. Now, we see a recent lie stemming from his 2018 Holy Day of Atonement address, that he allegedly called Jewish people “termites”. What did he say? What did he not say? Why has this one man become such a thorn in the side of the enemy that he would need to create an atmosphere of hatred and vitriol by smearing Minister Farrakhan’s good name?
First and foremost, two questions need to be answered: who is a “Semite” and what does it mean to be “Semitic”? By definition, “Semitic” means:
“Relating to or denoting a family of languages that includes Hebrew, Arabic, and Aramaic and certain ancient languages such as Phoenician and Akkadian, constituting the main subgroup of the Afro-Asiatic family. Relating to the people who speak Semitic languages, especially Hebrew and Arabic.”
A “Semite” is defined as:
“A member of any of the peoples who speak or spoke a Semitic language, including in particular the Jews and Arabs.”
Based upon definition alone, as an ancient people who once spoke Arabic as the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad taught us, how can we be anti-ourselves? How can the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan be against himself if all he does is criticize the harmful actions of those who say they are Jews but are not? When you ask individuals why they call the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan anti-Semitic, they will usually bring up the following lies:
- Farrakhan called Hitler ‘great’
- He called Judaism a ‘gutter religion’
- He calls Jewish people ‘Satanic’
- He is anti-Israel
- He called Jews ‘termites’.
What we must understand is that context is everything. If you do not put things in proper context, then you might find yourself arguing something that was blown out of proportion. A lot of the statements that the media claims Minister Farrakhan has said have in actuality not been made by him at all, which, God-Willing, we will get into. In this column, we intend to dissect and explain each lie that has attempted to tarnish the good name of our beloved Minister and those who follow him. Let’s begin with the first one:
“Farrakhan called Hitler a great man”. I ask, in what context? Was it to praise him and his evil towards Jewish people? Was it to deliberately celebrate the atrocities inflicted upon Jewish people? Or was it a historical analysis of his power and military strength in rebuttal to a harmful comparison presented by members of the Jewish community? Let’s discuss the origin of this lie:
Rev. Jesse Jackson received hateful attacks by members of the Jewish community for supporting the Palestinian people. An ad was posted in the New York Times; instead of saying “Run, Jesse, Run!”, it made a campaign slogan, “ Ruin, Jesse, Ruin!”. The ad also bitterly accused Rev. Jackson as a “danger to American Jews, to the State of Israel, and to America itself.”
A harmful environment of hatred for this man lingered. Rev. Jesse Jackson’s very life was threatened, and Minister Farrakhan stood to defend his brother. On February 25, 1984, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan spoke of the climate that members of the Jewish communities had placed Rev. Jackson in, the same environment that caused many leaders to be killed:
“I’m saying to the Jewish people who may not like our brother, it is not Jesse Jackson that you are attacking. Remember this now. You’re not attacking an individual. Jesse’s gone past this now. When you attack him, you attack the million that are lining up with him. You’re attacking all of us. That’s not intelligent. That’s not an intelligent thing to do. That’s not wise. We know that Blacks and Jews have had a good relationship in the past. We’ve gotten along well, because you’re a suffering people and so are we. But my dear Jewish friends, you must understand that everything comes of age. We cannot define our self interest in terms of your self interest. And because our self interests differ because we’ve come of age, why dislike us? Why attack our champion? Why hurl stones at him? Why feed the Press so that they can create a climate into which hatred and bitterness and strife can be poured, creating the same kind of climate that led to the assassination of John Kennedy, the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X and Bobby Kennedy. Why create that kind of climate when you have the power to turn it around and show the world that you have sense? Don’t you realize what you’re doing? Press, don’t you realize what you’re doing? Are you as blind as the government? And if the blind lead the blind, both fall in the ditch. You are blind.”
Minister Farrakhan then warns those who want to harm Rev. Jackson to leave him alone, and even calls for a dialogue between the two people at odds.
“I say to you as intelligent people, sit down and talk with Rev. Jackson. Sit down Jewish leaders and talk with us. We are ready to talk with you. Sit down and talk like intelligent people who have a future at stake. But if you harm this brother, I warn you in the name of Allah, this will be the last one you harm. We are not making any idle threats, we have no weapons, we don’t carry so much as a pen knife. But I do tell the world that Almighty God Allah is backing us up in what we say and what we do, and we warn you in His Name– leave this servant of Almighty God alone. Leave him alone. If you want to defeat him, defeat him at the polls. We can stand to lose an election, but we cannot stand to lose our brother…”
So where did the “Hitler comment” come from? This comes from an emotional and irrational reaction to Minister Farrakhan’s response to being labeled as the “Black Hitler”. This insult was thrown by Nathan Perlmutter, the former National Director of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) on February 27, 1984; then parroted by Jewish leader and then columnist for the tabloid Village Voice, Nat Hentoff. This kind of name calling backfires on those who delight in using this comparison because it actually does harm to Jewish people, according to members of the community.
When Donald J. Trump was elected president in 2016, members of the Jewish community were criticizing those who were comparing him and his policies to Hitler’s. The argument was that Trump is not a “new Hitler” because Hitler’s impact on Jewish people was much worse than Trump’s presidential policies. Those who compared him to Hitler were accused of spreading a false and anti-Semitic equivalency, and went as far as saying that they were denying the Holocaust. Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz in a 2016 Fox News interview said the following:
“Anybody who compares Trump or anybody else to Hitler essentially is a Holocaust denier. Because, what they’re saying [is] ‘well, there were no gas chambers, there was no Auschwitz, there was no plan to kill six million Jews’. They minimize it.”
So, according to this rejection of Hitler comparisons by Mr. Dershowitz, we can say that to even call Minister Farrakhan the “new black Hitler” is in itself an offense to Jewish people in that it relegates the effect of an actual murderer. By this account, we can say that those who delight in comparing Minister Farrakhan to Adolf Hitler are essentially deniers of their own suffering. Did you, Mr. Dershowitz, denounce Nathan Perlmutter the former National Director of the ADL as a Holocaust denier? Are you willing to renounce Nat Hentoff for minimizing the reality of gas chambers and the genocide of six million Jews?
We agree with you: Minister Farrakhan is incomparable to Adolf Hitler. He has not done a fraction of the atrocities that Hitler is known for.
On March 11, 1984 at the Final Call Administration Building in, Chicago, Illinois, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan responded to this insult on a radio broadcast. What usually happens in media is that they edit out Minister Farrakhan’s full words and stop at “Hitler was a great man.” But what they do not release are his words that explain his stance right after:
“Here the Jews don’t like Farrakhan and so they call me ‘Hitler’. Well that’s a good name. Hitler was a very great man. He wasn’t great for me as a black person but he was a great German. And he rose Germany up from the ashes of her defeat by the united force of all of Europe and America after the first World War]. Yet Hitler took Germany from the ashes and rose her up and made her the greatest fighting machine of the twentieth century, brothers and sisters, and even though Europe and America had deciphered the code that Hitler was using to speak to his chiefs of staff, they still had trouble defeating Hitler even after knowing his plans in advance. Now I’m not proud of Hitler’s evil against Jewish people; but that’s a matter of record. He rose Germany up from nothing. Well, in a sense you could say there’s a similarity in that we are rising our people up from nothing. But don’t compare me with your wicked killers.”
This is not an appraisal, especially when calling Hitler a “wicked killer.” How did this get so skewed so heavily? No, The Honorable Louis Farrakhan did not call Adolf Hitler “great” to praise him. Minister Farrakhan has said time and time again that he was not saying “great” as in morally correct or “good”, but rather great as in large in size and powerful, which is in fact the definition of great. Similar can be said about “Babylon the Great.” It was not great in the sense that it was just and good, but it was great because it had plenty of influence and power as a nation. The same can be said about any nation today that is great in its military power, its economic power, its technology and its resources, yet they are wicked and tyrannical towards humanity. Nonetheless, as a matter of record and historical account, Hitler was wickedly great and politically powerful.
To Be Continued….
This is the first piece in a new column at Joshua’s Truth geared towards ‘Defending Farrakhan’. The column is written by Nzinga Muhammad, a 19-year-old college student from Rochester, NY and a staunch social media defender of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan.