Wednesday, December 06, 2006

The Popes Against the Jews - by David I. Kertzer

Kertzer's book The Popes Against the Jewsdocumented the Vatican's role in the rise of modern European antisemitism. Kertzer documented (through the Vatican's own archives) that the Catholic church systematically oppressed the Jews through the same means as Hitler's Third Reich, only short of mass extermination. Walled ghettos, compulsory yellow identification badges, accusations of ritual murder and vampirism, blame for all social ills, and racial execution - all originated with the Papal states and were continued by Rome through the 19th century and even into the early 20th century.

Kertzer's main point is that the Vatican's 1998 document claiming the church was not complicit in antisemitism is more of a cover-up than a willingness to come to terms with the church's actual behavior.

Well researched. Well written.

Whew! Glad to have my Holocaust reading out of the way for 2006!

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