All posts by lucidaintervalla

The War Within (Over the Mountains) (2005)

In the case you missed it, watch this movie.

MOVIE INFO

The war on terror has an unusual effect on one man in this independent drama. Hassan (Ayad Akhtar) was an engineering student from Pakistan who, while studying in Paris, was one of several Pakistani students arrested by intelligence officers on suspicion of participating in international terrorist activities. Hassan was innocent of any crimes, but it took him hours to convince the authorities of this. By the time Hassan was released, his attitude about the West had begun to change, and in time he began to identify with the terrorists with whom he had been unwittingly associated. Hassan then renounces his old life, joins a radical group, and illegally slips into the United States with the aim of staging a major terrorist action in New York City. Hassan comes to stay with an old friend, Sayeed (Firdous Bamji), and his family; Hassan has told Sayeed and his wife (Sarita Choudhury) that he’s come to New York in search of a job, but in time Sayeed suspects his friend has a different agenda in mind. The War Within was screened as part of the 2005 Toronto Film Festival. 

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/war_within/

Der Hass auf die Freiheit

Nine-Eleven und der Furor gegen den Individualismus – drei Thesen. Dokumentation eines Vortrags von Tilman Tarach, gehalten im Rahmen der Freiburger Thementage Antisemitismus am 10. September 2011.



VON TILMAN TARACH


I.

Nicht nur Osama bin Laden und seine heimlichen sowie offenen Sympathisanten sehnten sich die Zerstörung New Yorks herbei. Schon über Adolf Hitler schrieb Albert Speer in seinen Spandauer Tagebüchern: „Ich erinnere mich, wie er sich in der Reichskanzlei Filme vom brennenden London, vom Feuermeer über Warschau, von explodierenden Geleitzügen vorführen ließ und welche Gier ihn dann jedes Mal erfasste. Nie aber habe ich ihn so außer sich gesehen wie gegen Ende des Krieges, als er wie in einem Delirium sich und uns den Untergang New Yorks in Flammenstürmen ausmalte. Er beschrieb, wie sich die Wolkenkratzer in riesige, brennende Fackeln verwandelten, wie sie durcheinander stürzten, wie der Widerschein der berstenden Stadt am dunklen Himmel stand, und er meinte, wie aus einer Ekstase zurückfindend, Saur solle den Entwurf Messerschmidts für einen vierstrahligen Fernbomber sofort in die Wirklichkeit umsetzen.“ [1]

Nun ist Speer zwar ein zweifelhafter Zeuge, aber es existiert auch eine Karteaus dem Jahr 1944, die einen deutschen Angriff auf Manhattan und die zu erwartenden Zerstörungen skizziert. [2] Das Zitat und die Karte erinnern in geradezu unheimlicher Weise an 9/11, und in der Tat kann der Angriff auf dieTwin Towers als späte Erfüllung eines leidenschaftlichen nationalsozialistischen Wunsches verstanden werden. Allerdings wird die ideologische Nähe der Attentäter von 9/11 zum Nationalsozialismus weitgehend geleugnet.

Osama bin Laden hatte sich schon in seiner Schulzeit der Muslimbruderschaft angeschlossen, deren Gründer Hassan al-Banna ein glühender Bewunderer Mussolinis und Hitlers war, die „ihre Völker zu Einheit, Ordnung, Erneuerung, Macht und Ruhm“ geführt hätten. Auch von Hitlers Rundfunkreden und den Deutschen war al-Banna begeistert, wohingegen er die „Verwestlichung“ und „Verweichlichung“ der Ägypter kritisierte, die leider von einer „Liebe zum weltzugewandten Leben und einem Hass auf den Tod“ erfasst worden seien. [3]

Die Parole „Ihr liebt das Leben, wir lieben den Tod“ ist bekannt geworden durch die Madrid-Attentäter aus dem Jahr 2004, in Wahrheit jedoch gehört sie zum Standardrepertoire der antiwestlichen islamistischen Verlautbarungen. Bin Laden äußerte sich schon 1996 in einer an die Amerikaner gerichteten Fatwa wie folgt über seine jungen Anhänger: „Diese jungen Männer lieben den Tod, so wie ihr das Leben liebt.“ [4] Dass insbesondere die Juden „eher das Leben lieben“, wohingegen „wir“ – die Palästinenser – „eher
den Tod lieben“, hört man in den palästinensischen Gebieten mitunter von ganz normalen Bewohnern (auch Ulrich W. Sahm berichtet dies), und auch verschiedene hochrangige Hamas-Vertreter gaben Ähnliches bereits zum Besten, etwa Fathi Hamad undIsmail Haniya.

Der wichtigste geistige Pate bin Ladens war der Ägypter Sayyid Qutb, einer der bedeutendsten islamistischen Theoretiker der Muslimbruderschaft. In seinem 1950 veröffentlichter Aufsatz Unser Kampf mit den Juden schrieb Qutb beispielsweise: „Allah hat Hitler gebracht, um über sie zu herrschen; […] und Allah möge (wieder) Leute schicken, um den Juden die schlimmste Art der Strafe zu verpassen; damit wird er sein eindeutiges Versprechen erfüllen.“

Was nun Osama bin Laden betrifft, so haben sich weite Teile der europäischen Gesellschaft noch nicht einmal zu dem sprichwörtlichen schrecklichen Verdachtdurchgerungen, er könnte etwas gegen Juden gehabt haben. Der diesbezügliche, ziemlich ausführliche deutsche Wikipedia-Eintrag beispielsweise erwähnt dessen Antisemitismus mit keiner Silbe, obwohl er in bin Ladens Ideologie eine zentrale Stellung einnahm und seine Texte vor antisemitischer Hetze nur so strotzen. „Der jüdische Feind ist der Aggressor, der Verderber der Religion und der Welt“, erklärte er 1994; ein Jahr später bezeichnete er die „Palästinafrage“ als „die Mutter aller muslimischen Anliegen“. Im November 2001 sagte er in einer Video-Botschaft: „Wie sollen die armen Mütter von Palästina ertragen, dass ihre Kinder vor ihren Augen den Unterdrückern, den jüdischen Polizisten zum Opfer fallen, mit der Unterstützung der USA, mit Flugzeugen und Panzern der USA? Wer zwischen Amerika und Israel unterscheidet, ist der wahre Feind der Umma.“ Und in seinem „Brief an Amerika“ vom November 2002 schrieb er: „Euer Gesetz ist das Gesetz der Reichen und Mächtigen, die in ihren Parteien Hof halten und Wahlkampagnen durch ihre Geschenke finanzieren. Hinter ihnen stehen die Juden, die eure Politik, eure Medien und eure Wirtschaft kontrollieren.“ (Auch dies könnte aus der Feder der Nationalsozialisten stammen, die ja hinter den Alliierten ebenfalls nur Juden sahen.) In seinem Brief „an die Völker Europas“ schließlich erklärte bin Laden im April 2004: „Präsident Bush und die anderen Regierungsvorsitzenden, die großen Medienkonzerne, die Vereinten Nationen, die zwischen den militärischen Führern und der mächtigen Generalversammlung ihre Gesetze erlassen – sie alle sind nur Agenten der Täuschung und Ausbeutung. Diese und andere Gruppen sind eine tödliche Gefahr für die gesamte Welt, und die gefährlichste und komplexeste ist die Lobby der Zionisten.“ [5]

Personen aus dem Hamburger Umfeld von Mohammed Atta, dem wohl bedeutendsten der 19 Attentäter des 11. September, attestierten diesem unumwunden ein „nationalsozialistisches Weltbild“. Die Juden waren für ihn die „Strippenzieher der Medien, der Wirtschaft, der Politik“, und natürlich steckten sie auch hinter den Kriegen am Golf, auf dem Balkan, in Tschetschenien und so weiter. Atta wünschte sich einen Gottesstaat vom Nil bis zum Euphrat, das heißt: die Zerstörung Israels. Die Juden, so Atta, wollten letztlich den Islam ausrotten, und das „Zentrum des Weltjudentums“ befinde sich in New York. [6] Schon Abdul Rahman Yasin, der am 1993er-Anschlag auf die Twin Towersbeteiligt war, hatte sich in den Wahn hineingesteigert, die Mehrzahl der imWorld Trade Center arbeitenden Menschen seien Juden.

Gleichwohl erntet man insbesondere innerhalb großer Teile der politischen Linken bestenfalls Kopfschütteln, wenn man den antisemitischen Charakter von 9/11 benennt; nicht selten wird ein solcher Hinweis gar empört zurückgewiesen, als Denunziation des wackeren Kämpfers Osama bin Laden nämlich, der doch zumindest „objektiv“ als Antiimperialist zu gelten habe. Das antisemitische Weltbild der Täter wird also verleugnet oder verharmlost – so wie insbesondere die politische Linke in der Weimarer Republik den Antisemitismus der Nazis allzu leichtfertig bagatellisiert hatte (als „Nebenwiderspruch“ beispielsweise). Und die Interviews bin Ladens sowie die sonstigen antisemitischen Äußerungen der Gotteskrieger werden kaum zur Kenntnis genommen, so wie in der Weimarer Zeit die Europäer einschließlich der Linken es kaum für nötig befanden, Mein Kampf zu lesen und zu skandalisieren.


II.

Der Hassschwerpunkt aller Antisemiten ist gegen die Idee der Emanzipation des Individuums von den Zwängen der Natur und vor allem der Gesellschaft gerichtet; Judenfeinde sind stets Feinde der individuellen Freiheit und der Geistes. Nicht das Subjekt mit all seinen Bedürfnissen steht im Vordergrund, sondern ein religiöses oder nationales Kollektiv: Was früher die Christenheit war, ist heute die Umma oder die mit der Scholle verwachsene, gleichsam naturwüchsige Volksgemeinschaft. Das zeigt sich auch an den gängigen antizionistischen Parolen: Es ist eher selten die Rede von der „Freiheit für die Palästinenser“, weitaus häufiger wird die „Freiheit für das palästinensischeVolk“ gefordert. Antisemiten sind geprägt von der Angst vor dem Verlust der Nestwärme der eigenen Gemeinschaft, von der Angst vor der Freiheit und der mit der Freiheit stets verbundenen Unsicherheit und Notwendigkeit der intellektuellen Anstrengung. Die Delegation jeder Entscheidung an eine Autorität bzw. an ein Kollektiv jedoch führt zur intellektuellen Verwahrlosung.

Antisemiten haben infolgedessen eine regelrechte Knechtsgesinnung gegenüber ihrem eigenen, paternalistisch strukturierten Kollektiv, und zur Selbstversicherung werden regelmäßig die Juden als (vermeintlich) religiöses – oder Israel als nationales – Gegenkollektiv wahrgenommen und gehasst (aber zugleich heimlich beneidet), denn sie werden als gleichschaltungsresistent imaginiert und erinnern den Antisemiten unbewusst an seine eigene armselige Existenz in seiner freiwilligen Unterwerfung unter seine eigene Gemeinschaft. Es ist, als würde die gesichtslose, dem Herdentrieb folgende graue Maus den Juden vorwerfen: „Ihr liebt das Leben, wir lieben den Tod!“

Dies alles gilt jedoch nicht nur in Bezug auf Israel, sondern tendenziell auch in Bezug auf Amerika. Bezeichnend ist schon die vor allem im isla­mi­schen Raum häufig anzutreffende Bezeichnung der USA als „großer Satan“ (neben dem „kleinen Satan“ Israel), denn gerade die Figur des Satans ist es, die einen in Versuchung führt, die also insgeheim eine (freilich verleug­nete) Attraktivität ausstrahlt. Amerika steht bei den Gotteskriegern und ihren europäischen – heimlichen oder bekennenden – Freunden im Verdacht, die Moderne zu repräsentieren, den „seelenlosen“ Materialismus, die Gleichstellung der Frau, die geistige sowie sexuelle Libertinage und die individuellen Freiheitsrechte. Und in diesem Verdacht standen die USA seit ihrer Entstehung; er besteht gänzlich unabhängig von einer möglicherweise guten oder schlechten amerikanischen Außenpolitik.

Überdies beäugt manch ein Blut-und-Boden-Obsku­rantist die Vereinigten Staaten schließlich auch deshalb miss­trauisch, weil sie keine „Blutsnation“ sind, also nicht wirklich auf einer gemeinsamen Ab­stam­mung (oder wenigstens auf einer gemeinsamen Religion) beruhen und nicht „mit ihrer Scholle verwachsen“ sind – anders als manche europä­ische und vor allem arabische Staaten, deren „Volksge­meinschaften“ als natur­wüchsig und autoch­thon wahrgenommen und den „künstlichen“, multi­kulturellen, mit­unter als „jü­disch versippt“ halluzinierten USA gegenübergestellt werden. Es ist ja gerade das Merkmal der Künstlichkeit, das beson­ders gerne auch gegen Israel in Anschlag gebracht wird, wie schon der beliebte, abfällige Begriff „zionistisches Gebilde“ belegt.

Der aggressive Wunsch der Antisemiten, die Juden als Störenfriede der eigenen Friedhofsruhe loszuwerden, verdichtet sich letzten Endes im Verlangen nach Elimination. Es handelt sich dabei um den von Freud beschriebenen unbewussten Vorgang der Projektion; Antisemiten sind daher in der Regel nicht dazu fähig, ihre Empfindungen zu reflektieren. Beim Antisemitismus handelt es sich also um nicht weniger als eine Massenpsychose.

Um die eigene Aggressivität zu kaschieren, werden dabei die Juden stets als Angreifer halluziniert. Früher hieß es in diesem Zusammenhang „Deutsche! Wehrt euch! Kauft nicht bei Juden!“, heute wird Israel zum Aggressor gemacht, zu dem Staat, der wie kein anderer den Weltfrieden bedrohe und Palästinenser quäle, obwohl doch Israel seit über 60 Jahren bedroht und angegriffen wird und obwohl die Palästinenser, die in Israel leben – also die israelischen Araber – unvergleichlich mehr Rechte und Freiheiten haben als die Palästinenser in jedem arabischen Staat.

Aber seit dem 8. Mai 1945 gibt es in Deutschland keine Antisemiten mehr, es gibt nur noch „Israelkritiker“. Doch so wie der Antisemitismus in Adornos berühmt gewordenen Diktum als „das Gerücht über die Juden“ beschrieben wurde, so ist der Antizionismus das Gerücht über Israel.


III.

Die Juden, die so genannten Volksfeinde, die Schwulen, die Intellektuellen, aber auch alle anderen, die im Verdacht stehen, das eigene Glück zum Handlungsmaßstab zu machen, wirkten „zersetzend“ – so heißt es. „Zersetzen“ bedeutet hier, ein Kollektiv in seine Einzelteile aufzulösen. Wer sich dem Kollektiv nicht unterwirft, wer alleine durch seine Existenz beweist, dass man sich sozialem Druck nicht beugen muss, der gilt nicht selten als (Volks-)Verräter oder fremdgesteuerter Spion. Diesen Vorwurf mussten nicht nur linke Dissidenten immer wieder fürchten, sondern beispielsweise auch palästinensische Araber, die sich dann doch lieber für ein eigenes gutes Leben einsetzten statt für den Tod der Juden. Tausende von ihnen wurden in den letzten Jahrzehnten ermordet, unter dem Vorwurf, sie seien Kollaborateure mit Israel.

Aber auch anderen wird vorgeworfen, Agenten in fremdem Dienst zu sein. Die aus Bangladesch stammende Schriftstellerin Taslima Nasrin etwa wurde von fanatisch-muslimischer Seite verdächtigt, eine jüdische Spionin zu sein, weil sie Islamkritik betreibt und sich für Frauenrechte einsetzt. Und die Vertreter sowohl der linken als auch der rechten Opposition gegen Stalin wurden regelmäßig als „Agenten des Imperialismus“ oder einer jüdischen Weltverschwörung denunziert. Vergleichbare Anwürfe wurden immer wieder auch gegen Karl Marx, Sigmund Freud oder Theodor W. Adorno erhoben und ebenso – beispielsweise in den unsäglichen „Protokollen der Weisen von Zion“ – gegen die Anhänger der Französischen Revolution. Im Grunde haben wir ein analoges Phänomen schon beim europäischen Hexenwahn, denn auch die als Hexen bezeichneten Frauen wurden als von einer höheren, fremden Macht – dem so genannten Teufel – gesteuert betrachtet. Und wer heute insbesondere innerhalb eines linken sozialen Umfelds solidarisch mit Israel ist, dem wird ebenfalls nicht selten unterstellt, fremdgesteuert zu sein: Früher rief man ihm „Judenknecht“ nach, heute gilt er bevorzugt als „Imperialistenknecht“ oder als „Marionette der israelischen Regierung“.

In das kleine Hirn dieser Leute passt der Gedanke also nicht, dass man aus Überzeugung und Gründen der Vernunft eine Position einnimmt, die doch so weit entfernt ist von dem, worauf man sich stillschweigend geeinigt hat; denn zumindest der latente Antisemitismus ist ja, wenn man so will, ein konstanter Bestandteil der europäischen Kultur. Nicht sein kann, was nicht sein darf – deswegen gilt man dann den zur Reflexion unfähigen Kleingeistern als Agent einer als übermächtig imaginierten Institution. Die eigene, unabhängig von irgendwelchen Massen angeeignete Erkenntnis wird also als fremdbestimmt denunziert, und die Ressentiments und niedrigsten Instinkte aus dem Bodensatz der Gesellschaft werden als ureigenste Identität gefeiert. Kurz: Das Eigene gilt als fremd, das Fremde gilt als Eigenes.

Anmerkungen:
[1] Albert Speer: Spandauer Tagebücher, Berlin 1993, S. 126f. (Eintrag vom 18.11.1947).
[2] Die Karte stammt ursprünglich aus der Arbeit des für die Nationalsozialisten arbeitenden Luftfahrttechnikers Eugen Sänger, im Original zugänglich im Archiv des Deutschen Museums München (Nachlass Sänger, NL 230 und Vorl. Nr. 0121).
[3] Vgl. Efraim Karsh: Imperialismus im Namen Allahs. Von Muhammad bis Osama Bin Laden, München 2007, S. 313f.; Matthias Küntzel: Djihad und Judenhaß. Über den neuen antijüdischen Krieg, Freiburg 2002, S. 23.
[4] Hans-Gerhard Kippenberg/Tilman Seidensticker (Hg.): Terror im Dienste Gottes. Die „geistliche Anleitung“ der Attentäter des 11. September 2001, Frankfurt am Main/New York 2004, S. 96.
[5] Zitate aus Marwan Abou-Taam/Ruth Bigalke (Hg.): Die Reden des Osama bin Laden, Kreuzlingen/München 2006, S. 36, 48, 116, 141, 150.
[6] Der Spiegel 36/2002, S. 117.

Zum Foto: Palästinenser feiern die Terroranschläge von Nine-Eleven. Gaza, 11. September 2001.

28. September 2011 in Lizas Welt

The Real Ronald Reagan – A Puppet

Being a free-thinking libertarian has boundless advantages. It allows one to stand back and evaluate the worldly commotion through a skeptical lens unhindered by dogmas, creeds and “party-line” non-sense. We tend to challenge the “conventional wisdom” of history told to us by ideological historians and rather interpret the meaning of bygone events through logical and creative thinking. We understand the media lies most of the time, governments have dubious agendas and corporations of the military-industrial complex run our country. Libertarians know this, we understand what is coming. This is what permits’ libertarians to see through the hoopla of the mystique Republican Party idol…Ronald Reagan.

If you unravel the media pundit talking points and really get down in the weeds of his presidency, you would find a rather disastrous 8 years in office. In ruthless reality, Reagan expanded government more than any other president before him, increased taxes, increased the deficit, raised tariffs, escalated foreign aid and increased the police state detrimentally. Reagan was never really one to think or make a decision on his own, never one to raise questions or provide empirical resolutions and was generally known for his “strange passivity.” He was otherwise, the perfect puppet for the establishment elite to control.

Here are 4 things that Republicans won’t tell you about their cultish big government hero…Ronald Reagan.

1. BIG SPENDER- After big Ron took office following Carter’s dreadful 4 year presidency, the spending began. It took Reagan just a couple of years to surpass Carter in federal spending, increasing it 53%. He significantly increased the percentage of government spending to GNP and skyrocketed the budget. He also tripled the national debt and quadrupled the deficit in his so-called “small government” 8 years stint in the White House.  Your dollar in 1980 would be worth .73 cents by the end of his reign. Some “Reagan Revolution!”

2. BIG TAXER- He’s known conventionally as a tax-cutter. This is false; he actually raised taxes like mad. He increased social security tax drastically to make up for his income tax cut a year earlier. As Murray Rothbard observed, the “Reagan Administration has constantly raised taxes – to punish us for the fake tax cut of 1981 – beginning in 1982 with the largest single tax increase in American history, costing taxpayers $100 billion.” He also raised tariffs and imposed import quotas more than any other president in history. And he’s supposedly the champion of free trade?

3. FOREIGN POLICY BLUNDERS-R
eagan was an unconstitutional warmonger just like all the rest of the prior and ensuing presidents in the last 100 years. His senseless intervention in Lebanon resulted in the death of hundreds of Marines. Just two days after a truck bomb killed 241 Marines in Beirut; the President launched a preemptive invasion of Grenada- a small island lacking any military- which left 19 Americans dead, 116 wounded. But the catastrophe in Beirut was soon forgotten. Also during the Reagan administration, a massacre of hundreds of women and children were conducted by “elite Salvadoran, US-trained Atlacatl Battalion” in Al Salvador. His imperial bullyism has resulted in many pointless civilian deaths around the world while at the same time, supporting many repressive regimes cloaked under the banner of “human rights.” Reagan also partook in a failed attempt to bomb –the US on and off again friendship- Muammar Gadaffi, instead, resulted in the death of his 2-year-old daughter. He plundered away billions of taxpayers’ money to prop up murderous dictators-like the rest of the ruling puppets.

4. Al QAEDA SUPPORTER? The Reagan administration and media at the time were absolutely dazzled by Al Qaeda, otherwise known as “Freedom Fighters.” The US was in full support and even funded Al Qaeda to help them defeat the Soviet Union. As Lew Rockwell wrote “After all, the ideological tendency called Al Qaeda was founded by the US to fight the Russians in Afghanistan. The CIA assembled every fundamentalist fighter it could find, under the leadership of, among others, Osama bin Laden.” Most Americans have no clue about this.

I like to bring these things up so often, not to bash individual politicians, but to expose the fallacy of “talking points”, and to show that presidents who speak of limited government and freedom are disingenuous. As Rothbard points out, “Reagan has been a master at engineering an enormous gap between his rhetoric and the reality of his actions.”

Every cockamamie policy Reagan pursued involved higher taxes, runaway deficit spending, less freedom and more senseless imperial aggression.

The conservative hero added a quarter million government jobs, escalated the War on Drugs, created czar offices and lowered the worth of the dollar. James Ostrowski points out that in the last 100 years, “of the five presidents who presided over the largest domestic spending increases, four were Republicans. Republicans can’t grasp this, libertarian’s can. It’s amazing to me how many conservatives denounce “big government” and yet favor “big government” candidates just because they have an “R” beside their name. This is the failure of the two-party system. It confines people’s rationality and thought process into a small box.

The Founders warned us against evolving into this type of flawed system of government which we call democracy. As Thomas Jefferson put so eloquently many years ago, “A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.” And yet here we are.

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Revolution in Haiti: THE BOIS CAIMAN CEREMONY

THE BOIS CAIMAN CEREMONY: FACT OR MYTH

The exchanges below which took place on Bob Corbett’s Haiti e-mail list address the question of whether or not the famous Bois Caiman Ceremony of August 1791 actually took place as an historical event or whether it is a famous and motivational myth.

Daniel Simidor


March 2002

With all the recent talk about Bois Caiman and the “Pact with Satan,” it is worth mentioning that there is another school of thought out there, which denies that the Bois Caiman ceremony ever took place. The French critic Leon-Francois Hoffmannn most recently called attention to that “myth,” at a 1991 conference on the state of Haiti two hundred years after Bois Caiman.

Hoffmannn, or rather Doctor Hoffmannn, is no slouch. His book, “The Romantic Nigger,” debunked a whole lot of prejudices and stereotypes in 18th and 19th century French literature. His presentation, presumably at the end of the conference came like a rock in a quiet pond. A malevolent Frenchman, he explained, had concocted the Bois Caiman myth, and Haitian historians too lazy to do their homework have erected that myth as the Fount of the Nation. Haitian participants at the conference bristled at the mocking tone of the presentation, but the learned Doctor stood by his research and made light of their imprecations.

The Haitian historical profession has been remarkably slow in picking up the gauntlet against the trespassing French scholar, who even hinted of a larger work on the subject. (To echo an earlier criticism voiced in a different context, where are those damn Haitian historians and PhD’s when you really need them?) Some research has been done since on Dahomean blood rites, oaths and secret societies. But it was left to the non-Haitian historian, David Geggus, to point out that there were actually two separate slave gatherings in August 1791.

The first meeting, where the uprising was decided, brought together 200 delegates to the Normand de Mezy plantation on Sunday, Aug. 14. This is the meeting that several prisoners revealed under torture, according to the malevolent Frenchman, Antoine Dalmas, who took part as a medical examiner in some of the interrogations. The second meeting, of a more religious nature, took place a week later in the secluded Caiman woods. What transpired there is understandably more difficult to piece together, given its secret nature.

According to Haitian historian Celigny Ardouin who spoke to a participant and personal friend of Toussaint Louverture around 1840, the latter was the chief organizer of the meeting on the Mezy plantation, but he chose his closest associates, Jean-Francois Papillon, Georges Biassou and Boukman Dutty to lead the first phase of the insurrection. General Paul Aly, the participant in question, makes no mention of Toussaint at the Bois Caiman ceremony. According to Geggus, it was Boukman who called the Bois Caiman meeting to jumpstart the uprising, before the plot could be uncovered.

Aly’s testimony corroborates the malevolent Frenchman’s report. But Geggus cites yet another source: Etienne Charlier’s “Apercu sur la formation historique de la nation haitienne” (1954), which identifies President Pierrot’s wife, Cecile Fatiman, as the officiating Vodou priestess at Bois Caiman. (Unfortunately, I’m unable to verify the spelling of Madame Pierrot’s maiden name, since a friend borrowed my copy of the Charlier book Haitian-style, i.e. unbeknownst to me.)

The veracity of the malevolent Frenchman’s tale (I mean Dalmas of course, not Hoffmannn) could best be left to the Evangelists to ferret out, if not for another intriguing claim related to the first. There is ample evidence to suggest (at this point, the Ginou-ists should put on their seat belts and swallow their sezisman pills) that Toussaint organized the insurrection at the instigation of the French governor, Blanchelande, who needed some leverage against the powerful Colonial Assembly, which had threatened to break away from France, like the American settlers did just a decade ago.

Geggus denies credence to that story, but some of his sources for the Bois Caiman story also incriminate Toussaint. Celigny Ardouin thus writes:

“Sonthonax’s widow, who knew Toussaint when he was still a slave, told one of our friends that Toussaint had used the surname Louverture before the uprising, because it was a nickname given to him on the Breda plantation on account that he was missing several front teeth. If that was the case, why did Toussaint sign his name as Toussaint Breda, while he was in the ranks of the insurgents? We looked for the reasons for this name change. We asked one of Toussaint’s companions, one of his friends, the esteemed Paul Aly, now colonel of the 31st Regiment and commander-in-charge in Santo Domingo. This veteran told us that Toussaint took the name Louverture to signify that he was the first who was chosen to lead the rebellion in the North; and that if he delayed using that name, it was because he could not get back the passport (sauf-conduit) that was given to him and which he had entrusted to his friend and comrade Biassou, until the latter crossed Jean-Francois who had his camp occupied and searched for papers that would incriminate him as a traitor.”

The passport in question had been issued by Blanchelande. Ardouin adds that it gave Toussaint unrestricted access to all the plantations in the Plaine du Nord, and shielded him from future criminal charges. Incidentally, the Mezy meeting had not been a secret or illegal gathering. The nationalist historian Gerard Laurent accepts Ardouin’s interpretation without qualm, and quotes Sonthonax to the effect that Toussaint had organized the uprising and the settlers’ massacre under compulsion from the monarchist émigrés that surrounded him. Laurent, however, commands Toussaint for his intelligence and cunning, and praised him as a supreme tactician.

The connection between the two claims is alarming, because if you take away Bois Caiman and Boukman’s denunciation of the white oppressors’ God, and then pin the monarchist conspiracy on Toussaint, the Fount of the Nation is, pedantically-speaking, forever tarnished. Personally I find both stories plausible, but I don’t mind leaving Papa Toussaint fend for himself. As for Bois Caiman, it may well be that both God and the Devil have let Haiti down, and that it’s time to let humanity conduct its own affairs. (Frankly, I don’t mind giving my place in paradise to somebody else.)

Daniel Simidor

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Rachel Beauvoir-Dominique


March 2002

During the last three months of 1999, I had the privilege of heading an historical and anthropological investigation concerning the Bois Caiman; this research was done with Eddy Lubin, who is the regional head of ISPAN in the North (ISPAN is the national institution charged of preserving heritage). Fifty interviews were carried out with residents of the Morne Rouge area i
n the North of Haiti, as well as inhabitants of Choiseul (a second place where some believe the Bois Caiman took place). Further along the road, we also met with traditionals of the Nan Campeche lakou, which also appears to be connected to the Bois Caiman ceremony (the place having been indicated to the maroons by a two-headed palm tree). All of this, naturally, was accompanied of a thorough research in the literature.

The report of this research was submitted in Dec. 1999 to the Haitian Ministry of Culture which had commissioned it to take place, after recommendation of the Jbmillet Architecture Firm, which had been charged of preparing a plan de amenagement to honor the spot, in conformity with the local population’s solicitation since 1991. The Jbmillet group felt it was not possible to architecturally render without this necessary background information.

In short, here are a few elements of that 90-page report I believe to be particularly relevant to this discussion; of course, it would be impossible to convey all the arguments included in that work. I would also like to add that I am submitting this, in part, in recognition of the highly interesting 1998 Corbettland discussions (Perrault, Chaumette, Mysteries, Simidor, Trouillot, Chamberlain, Bell, Benson, Blanchet, Delva, Greya) which I included (with proper reference) in the report’s appendix, since I have been following the debate around the Bois Caiman since 1991 and before.

  1. I think it is important to point out, however, before all, that seemingly contrary to the discussion taking place, all the various works I have conducted concerning the Old Cathedral, various historical cities, Puerto Real (the 16th century archaeological town), etc. all have always shown us that the Haitian people know their history and honor it through pilgrimages, symbolic gestures, and other. This is why I believe that Hoffmannn, Geggus and all those discussing this matter would have interest in coming to the field to discuss with those who remember, those whose parents remembered, those who have the oral history. Such an approach is basic.
  2. Memory of the Bois Caiman is vivid amongst the population who remembers the exact points where events took place. Here is a song, for instance, one 84 year-old was able to sing for us; he holds it from his grand-father: “Revni lwa yo, Sanble lwa yo, Nan Bwa Kayiman nou ye, Nou tande fizi tire Apre Bondye, Se nou sa l ki chaf la ye, Apre Bondye, Se nou chaf, Nan Bwa Kayiman a”
  3. Isn’t it strange to proponents of the legend hypothesis that Dalmas, that French Doctor, imagined precisely the pig sacrifice which fundamentally distinguishes the Petro/Makaya rite of Vodoun from the Rada/Ginen rite?
  4. Isn’t it strange to proponents of the legend hypothesis that all the various authors cited by Hoffmannn (Metral, Civique de Gastine, Harard-Dumesle, Robin, Sannon, Schoelchere) all, throughout the nineteenth century kept, basically, re-telling the same story, albeit with variations?
  5. The political analysis, further, corroborates the holding of a Bois Caiman ceremony. The BC was, before all, a political climax, fruit of a progression. As is known, since 1789, talk of abolition of the whip and ameliorated work conditions was common in the French colonies. By 1791, conditions were ripe and it is quite logical that it be accompanied of socio-religious preparations.
  6. In this sense, the Boukman Prayer is astonishing in that it very precisely describes this heightening of political-ideological consciousness. If one reads it precisely, one finds that it is as of voices superimposed, speaking, at first, of a) a God in the clouds, observing; b) two Gods, one White – of crime -, and one Black – of liberation; c) explosion of a new vision: that of total liberation: “listen to the liberty speaking in our hearts”.
  7. Analyzing primary source documents (10 of them!), one finds quite clearly that there were two assemblies, the first a few days before the second one. It appears this was due to an “accident” (precipitation of a few? misunderstanding?). The fact is that fire was set to a plantation in the Limbe region (Habitation Chabaud) which provoked interrogations by the authorities. Those arrested clearly indicated that there was a meeting at the Bois Caiman where it was decided to put fire to the colony and massacre all colonialists. (Please note these reports date of 17 Aug. 1791, preceding the Dalmas testimony). Roume, the Civil Commissioner, in his 1792 report, showed that every Sunday the slaves met to prepare the insurrection.
  8. The fact is that the first testimony of religious celebrations appear in Dalmas (1814) which could be quite normal, as all of the preceding are, basically, police reports. It would be augmented by the more tardive authors, Gastines, Dumesle, Celigny Ardouine
  9. It seems that in the present discussion an important element, explaining certain apparent “digressions” has been lost. This is the fact that Morne Rouge, the place where BC ceremony hypotheses converge, is also the only place in Haiti to retain an important Islamic cult. This is because the first wave of slaves were from the Senegambian region and had already undergone heavy Islamic influence. Up to date, Mori Barthelemy and followers of the region maintain this tradition, with honor to the sun, specific funeral rites and so on. If one returns to sources of the 16th century, one finds that there is where the first copper mines were established by the Spaniards, when they started giving up on the gold. These Senegambian Islamists were also traditional; in fact, their secret societies (in Mali, for example, the Kore) resemble closely those of Haiti. So the result is semi-Islamic Haitian secret societies whose responsibility, according to interviews, is “closing the circle”.

    I do not want to be too long so I will stop here.

    In ending, however, I would like to quote one interview whose viewpoint was quite strong: “The houngan ‘walks'” on 21 “pwen” (forces) though there are

  10. All the escorts, all the Ginen African nations. They all work together: always male and female, always light and dark. The (Secret) Societies, which were at the basis of the Bois Caiman “regleman” are one of the great parts of this whole, but they had to “pass bye” the other part to attain their objectives. That is in fact the very principle of the Vodoun “reglemane”. This quote, amongst others, ascertains the BC ceremony as one of coming together.

I also would recommend that all those interested in the art of secret societies visit the FPVPOCH website (http://www.geocities.com/fpvpoch). A few discussions of the relationship between “Makaya” (secret society) art and history are included there.

Rachel Beauvoir-Dominique

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In Bob Corbett’s review of Leon-Francois Hoffmannn’s book: HAITIAN LITERATURE REVISITED he says:

A second essay of special interest is entitled “The Ceremony at Bois Caiman.” Here again Kauffmann uses his meticulous analysis of original sources to argue that there never was such a ceremony and that its actual originals were in the writings of a Frenchman who was using it to denigrate the slaves, not celebrate a motivational or mystical moment. Kauffman’s tracing of the development and changing oh the story in Haitian literature is a tour-de-force of in-depth scholarship.

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Daniel Simidor replies:

Daniel Simidor


April 2002

In his review of Leon-Francois Hoffmannn’s book on Haitian fiction, Bob Corbett repeats Hoffmannn’s claim that the Bois Caiman ceremony was a myth, without looking at the evidence, historical and otherwise, in favor of a factual Bois Caiman. That the August 1791 General Uprising was an orgy of blood sums it up quite nicely for Hoffmannn; the blood spilled in that case was French after all. That the rebel slaves abhorred the culture of their oppressors, or that they as a class held a separate agenda independent of all other classes in the colony, is too much for Hoffmannn to contemplate. Indeed, his work is part of a French revisionist tradition that looks upon the Haitian revolution as a by-product of the French revolution. It is consistent with that claim to downplay the Bois Caiman ceremony or to deny that it ever took place (and then to neatly label Toussaint as a French General). Hoffmannn underestimated the people’s recollection of such a momentous event, however, and Rachel Beauvoir-Dominique’s experiment in local history in the Morne Rouge area proves how strong that memory remains within the Vodou tradition. The more one thinks about it, the clearer it becomes that Hoffmannn proved nothing if not his own bias.

It is unfortunate, however, that Herard Dumesle’s “Voyage dans le Nord d’Haiti” is so hard to find. (Someone with a copy ought to create an electronic version of the chapter on Bois Caiman.) Dumesle published a rendition of Boukman’s prayer at Bois Caiman that Hoffmannn derides because it is written in verse. Hoffmannn rejects the verses as an outright impossibility. Yet, if Boukman was literate as so many people claim, is it not conceivable that he could have rehearsed his incantation ahead of time? Also, given the fact of what is known about him, is it not equally conceivable that Bookman was a Marabout, i.e. a muslim cleric, captured and deported to the New World during one of the numerous slave raids in West Africa? (Indeed, if Boukman had been a 29 year-old orthodox Jew killed in Brooklyn in 1991, he would have been hailed universally as a scholar!) Some people object (as proof that Boukman was not a Muslim or that the Bois Caiman ceremony was a myth) that Boukman as a Muslim cleric could not have sacrificed a pig. But the legend only says that he presided at the ceremony; a Manbo, or Vodou priestess presumably carried out the sacrifice of the pig.

Daniel Simidor

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Corbett replies to Simidor:

Early on in Leon-Francois Hoffmannn’s essay on Bois Caiman he states his thesis in unmistakenable language: ” research on the Bois Caiman ceremony leads to the almost certain conclusion that we are dealing here not with a historical event but with a legend, who origins can be traced to the malevolent imagination of a French planter.” (p. 159)

The strategy which Hoffmannn uses to support his claim is go back to the earliest known version of the story in print, that of Antoine Dalmas in Histoire de la revolution de Saint-Domingue, which, while published in 1814 was claimed to have been written in 1793.

Hoffmannn makes case that there was likely to be an ulterior motive in Dalmas’ version and thus distrusts it: “Of all the authors who have written on the Bois Caiman ceremony he alone was in the area when the revolt broke out, and his testimony would therefore seem trustworthy. It is, in point of fact, highly questionable: a White (sic)settler would obviously not have been invited or permitted to attend a conspiratorial meeting. Dalmas does not in fact claim to have been an eyewitness, but asserts that his information comes from the interrogation of prisoners conducted a few days later. However the manuscript minutes of these interrogations have survived in the French National Archives and make no mention of this or any other vodun ceremony. Neither do the very numerous and minutely detailed accounts of the events that were gathered by French investigative commissions and published between 1791 and, say, 1825 when the French government finally recognized Haitian independence. The likelihood is that the whole episode was invented by Dalmas.” (p. 160)

Hoffmannn then quotes a passage from the Dalmas book which describes the ceremony, ending with “That such an ignorant and besotted caste would make the superstitious rituals of an absurd and sanguinary religion serve as a prelude to the most frightful crimes was to be expected.” (161).

This leads Hoffmannn to conclude: “The last sentence of Dalmas’ account is clear proof that his intention was in fact to denigrate the slaves.” (161).

Daniel Simidor, responding to my mention of this essay in my review of the Hoffmannn book says:

“In his review of Leon-Francois Hoffmannn’s book on Haitian fiction, Bob Corbett repeats Hoffmannn’s claim that the Bois Caiman ceremony was a myth, without looking at the evidence, historical and otherwise, in favor of a factual Bois Caiman. That the August 1791 General Uprising was an orgy of blood sums it up quite nicely for Hoffmannn; the blood spilled in that case was French after all. 

“That the rebel slaves abhorred the culture of their oppressors, or that they as a class held a separate agenda independent of all other classes in the colony, is too much for Hoffmannn to contemplate.”

However, this critique is manifestly unfair to the Hoffmannn text. This essay is not an analysis of the question of Bois Caiman itself, it is a review and analysis of the written records of it. From this first known source (Hoffmannn’s claim), he then analyzes later Haitian texts on this event and tries to show that they are indebted to the Dalmas version and have gone beyond it without further evidence to elaborate the more common version which is repeated in much of Haitian history, the version which Hoffmannn regards as a myth.

If Hoffmannn has any bias it is toward written sources of history as the most authoritative and reliable. He does rest his case of the likelihood that the Bois Caiman story is a myth on both the originative historical product of Dalmas and the following Haitian literature which flows from it and embellishes it.

The rest is not at all in Hoffmannn – Simidor’s charges that:

“That the rebel slaves abhorred the culture of their oppressors, or that they as a class held a separate agenda independent of all other classes in the colony, is too much for Hoffmannn to contemplate. Indeed, his work is part of a French revisionist tradition that looks upon the Haitian revolution as a by-product of the French revolution. It is consistent with that claim to downplay the Bois Caiman ceremony or to deny that it ever took place (and then to neatly label Toussaint as a French General).”

Hoffmannn claims none of this and the only part that stands at all is Simidor’s claim that the Hoffmannn account “is consistent” with these various historical causal claims. Yet Hoffmannn neither makes such claims nor suggests them in the slightest.

In rejecting Hoffmannn’s claims Simidor suggests an enormous power for ” Rachel Beauvoir-Dominique’s experiment in local history in the Morne Rouge area (which) proves how strong that memory r
emains within the Vodou tradition. The more one thinks about it, the clearer it becomes that Hoffmannn proved nothing if not his own bias.”

I find myself puzzled and troubled by Simidor’s argument, especially since in most cases I am persuaded by Simidor’s historical analyses as I was recently by a different post on the Bois Caiman ceremony in which he mentions the Hoffmannn thesis in conjunction with a different analysis which Hoffmannn has offered for the same thesis.

The conclusions of why Hoffmannn’s argument is weak seem to me to rely on the highly speculative notion of : here is a theory, and the theory is not impossible, thus Hoffmannn is refuted. Hoffmannn certainly has not “proved” his position in the sense that a scientific experiment is said to prove an hypothesis. Yet the carefully considered analysis of the existing historical and literary literature which Hoffmannn presents seems much more persuasive, likely and solid that the mere speculations Simidor offers which are, as he points out, not logically impossible, yet for which virtually no reasons are given for why one would choose these speculations over the carefully argued case which Hoffmannn makes. I am truly puzzled. This seems a case of wishing something were true and grasping at straws to make it seem so.

Bob Corbett

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Daniel Simidor replies to Corbett
April 2002

Bob Corbett refers to my comments as “manifestly unfair to the Hoffmannn text.” The Hoffmannn piece, he says is “not an analysis of the question of Bois Caiman itself,” but “a review and analysis of the written records of it.” He then chastises me for grasping at straws and for challenging Hoffmannn’s “considered analysis of the existing historical and literary literature” with “mere speculations.” But, to paraphrase a higher authority, speculation of speculations, everything is speculation! Before taking Hoffmannn to task, I checked some of his sources. I read the relevant passages in Garran Coulon’s voluminous report and a copy of the forced confession of Francois Chapotin, one of the slaves captured during the failed attack on the Chabaud/Gallifet plantations. (I invite the reader who has not done so to please read my initial contribution on this subject, post #a1063, and also Rachel Beauvoir-Dominique’s article, post #a1112.)

A lot of the confusion around Bois Caiman is caused by the fact that most historians have collapsed two important meetings, the August 14 meeting on the Mezy plantation, and the Bois Caiman meeting one week later, into one. Hoffmannn finds suspicious that there is ample evidence of the Mezy meeting and scant information on the latter. His claim that the Bois Caiman ceremony is a myth fabricated by the malevolent Antoine Dalmas is based entirely on the Mezy plantation, and the Bois Caiman meeting one week later, into one. Hoffmannn finds suspicious that there is ample evidence of the Mezy meeting and scant information on the latter. His claim that the Bois Caiman ceremony is a myth fabricated by the malevolent Antoine Dalmas is based entirely on the mistaken belief that Dalmas is the sole primary source for the Bois Caiman story. If Corbett’s reading of Hoffmannn’s intent was accurate, then the latter would have drastically revised his findings, in order to account for the two independent accounts of the Bois Caiman ceremony pointed out by David Geggus. Hoffmannn must quite simply recant, or he must convincingly refute Geggus’ sources.

Here I make an appeal to common sense. Let us start with the accepted fact that some 200 delegates from the Plaine du Nord plantations met on August 14 and decided on a general slave uprising, for which no date was agreed upon. The Acul and Limbé blacks were short on patience; the gang on the Gallifet estate jumped the gun on the night of Aug. 17 or Aug. 20, and botched up their attempt to set the place on fire. Those captured confessed of a plot to kill all the whites. The Limbé whites decided to take their captives to the Cape to convince the Governor of the urgency of the situation. But before they could safely make their way there, the insurrection exploded with the force of a wild prairie fire. Boukman fearing that the plot was unraveling, had called his followers to the Caiman woods, on the night of the 22nd, and improvised a ceremony that was partly political agitation and partly blood rite. One thousand French men, women and children lost their lives in the space of two weeks. The white population in the Cape, including the refugees from the Plaine, took no prisoners in their defense of the city. Their bloodthirsty and unbelievable cruelty against innocent slaves and freedmen in the Cape is a matter of record. That they did not form a commission to document each step in the planning of the insurrection is only surprising to some. That the lack of a paper trail 200 years later is evidence that a particular event did not happen only seems foolish.

Against common sense, Hoffmannn would have us believe that the hateful Dalmas invented what turns out to be a traditional Dahomean blood oath. In the tradition of other white historians, he turns his back on the work of his native counterparts, and simply dismisses the weight of local and family tradition in the retention of history where the written word is not available. Why this bias? I reason that it is partly because of the ideology that Hoffmannn and many Francophile historians adhere to, namely that the Haitian revolution was the “daughter” of the French revolution. To suggest that Hoffmannn is biased or not exhaustive in his research may seem unfair, but it is a fact. Even Marxist historians, like Etienne Charlier and CLR James, ascribed to the notion that the slaves could not “spontaneously” rise up to such a heightened state of rebellion by themselves, and that the French revolution was the catalyst, the “revolutionary situation,” that brought first the settlers, then the freedmen of color, and finally the blacks into motion. It wasn’t until Jean Fouchard’s work on the maroons that it became accepted that the slaves had their own tradition of struggle, their own aspiration to independence, and that they as a class held a separate agenda from the other classes in the colony.

Daniel Simidor

P.S. For those who do not read French, here is the translation of a footnote on Bois Caiman from Etienne Charlier’s book, “Apercu sur la formation historique de la Nation haitienne” (p. 49) published half a century ago:

“Cecile Fatiman, the wife of Louis Michel Pierrot, who led a black battalion at Vertieres and later became president of Haiti, took part in the Bois Caiman ceremony: she was a mambo [Vodou priestess]. The daughter of an African woman and of a Corsican prince, Cecile Fatiman was a mulatto with green eyes and long black silky hair, who was sold into slavery with her mother in Saint Domingue. The mother also had two sons who disappeared without a trace on the auction block. Cecile Fatiman lived in the Cape until the age of 112, in full possession of her mental ability. 

“We hold this information from General Pierre Benoit Rameau, the grandson of Louis Michel Pierrot and his wife, who gave us permission to publish it. General Rameau is one of our national heroes, but he is seldom mentioned, probably because he is alive and therefore cumbersome. It is a fact that when the North American military intervention took place in 1915, he was fighting in the North as a leader of Rosalvo Bobo’s forces. Loyal to Bobo in spite of the invader’s alluring offers, he opposed the Convention militarily, which earned him eleven years in jail and the subtilization of his wealth. 

“With the greatest indiff
erence, the Haitian of today, this curious byproduct of our glorious past, watches this old man go by, with his grandeur from a different era deserving of our respect. In his crude French, he expressed an implacable logic and the highest sense of virtue, in this reply to the occupant who wanted to buy him: “Your 100,000 dollars cannot supply to my honor, Captain Waller!” Toussaint Louverture, Dessalines and the leaders of 1804 did not speak more elegantly. Rameau’s encounter with Waller and Admiral Caperton took place in September 1915, in Dattes, Gonaives, in the house of Mr. Desert and in the presence of Mr. Woel, US Consul and father to Mr. Gaston Woel.”

http://www.webster.edu/~corbetre/haiti/history/revolution/caiman.htm

Jihad für 5.500€ Kindergeld plus Sozialhilfe

Letzten Freitag, am 25.11.2011, brachte die vierzig Jahre alte Elfi in der Berliner Charité einen Jungen zur Welt. Der Vorgang wäre unbemerkt geblieben, wenn es nicht das 14. Kind der Familie Yaghi gewesen wäre und dazu noch ein extrem schweres Baby: Es wog bei der Geburt 6080 Gramm. Hinzu kam noch der Name, den die Eltern ihrem jüngsten Sohn gaben: Jihad. Der sollte allerdings, versicherte Vater Mohammed, nicht etwa «Heiliger Krieg» bedeuten, sondern die Aufgabe, «seine Pflichten gegenüber Allah zu erfüllen».

Und so sorgte die Geschichte für Aufsehen. «Nach unseren Recherchen ist in Deutschland niemals zuvor ein so schweres Kind ohne Operation geboren worden», sagte Prof. Wolfgang Henrich, Chefarzt der Geburtsmedizin am Campus Virchow-Klinikum. Die Zeitungen gaben ziemlich alle Details der Geburt wieder, die Dauer der Wehen, die Weigerung der Mutter, einen Kaiserschnitt vornehmen zu lassen. Auch das Gewicht der Frau, 240 Kilo, und ihre Diabetes Erkrankung wurden angemessen gewürdigt. Die Familie mit neun Jungs und 4 Mädchen muss in ihrer 139 Quadratmeter großen Reinickendorfer 6-Zimmerwohnung jetzt noch enger zusammen rücken. Das älteste Kind ist 20 und das jüngste 1 Jahr alt. 

Nach einer Information suchte man freilich in den Berichten vergeblich: Wovon lebt eine Familie mit 14 Kindern? Eine Andeutung konnte man in einem Bericht der Welt finden: «Die gebürtige Ostberlinerin und ihr aus dem Libanon stammender Mann, sind vollauf mit der Kindererziehung beschäftigt und müssen daheim bleiben.»

Sie müssen es nicht nur, sie können es auch. Die Eltern von 14 Kindern bekommen monatlich 2923 Euro Kindergeld. Hinzu kommen Kosten für die Unterkunft (Miete, Heizung), Übernahme der Krankenversicherung für die ganze Familie durch das Sozialamt, Zuschüsse für Kleidung, verbilligte Bus- und Bahnkarten, kostenlose Lehrmittel und andere «Naturalien». Alles in allem hat eine 16-köpfige Familie ohne Arbeit ein Einkommen von etwa 5500 Euro monatlich zur Verfügung. Das mag bei 14 Kindern nicht viel sein, aber es ist erheblich mehr, als ein Arbeiter bei Opel oder eine Kassiererin bei Aldi verdienen, die ihre Miete und ihre Versicherung selber bezahlen müssen.

Denn die Bundesrepublik ist ein Sozialstaat, der den Menschen die Verantwortung für ihr Leben abnimmt. Die Kinder kommen von Allah oder von Gott. Das Kindergeld aber überweist das Arbeitsamt. (H.M.Broder +)