Monday, June 29, 2009

Of chickens, swines and antisemites

Antisemites are obsessed with conspiracies. This is because conspiracies are, by definition, secretive and therefore quite convenient as one does not have to produce any evidence of the involvement of individuals or groups in a conspiracy or even that a conspiracy actually exists. In fact the less evidence there is the more powerful and dangerous a conspiracy is deemed to be, since the very absence of evidence indicates, according to the conspiracy advocates, the high degree of secretiveness among its members and their great organizational skills and, therefore, the high degree of danger posed by the conspirators.

Therefore it was not surprising to read in the Thessaloniki blog “ta xalia”, which, with great modesty bills itself as “Macedonia’s No. 1 blog”, a recent post with the title “In truth what is to become with the swine flu”. In this post the (eponymous) author argues that some years ago, because of some Europeans companies' interest in obtaining cheap chickens from China that was adversely affecting the KFC fast food chain, which according to the post, serves “Jewish interests”, the American Jewish lobby invented the bird flu to stop Europeans from buying chickens from China. The author proceeds to conclude the post by implying that some American Jewish interests must have been affected this time around, hence the swine flu.

Now, as I posted earlier, it was a matter of time until Jews were going to be blamed for the swine flu. Amusingly enough, I pointed out to a conspiracy theory about a Chinese-Jewish collusion aiming at exterminating, presumably, those who are neither Chinese nor Jewish. But the post in "Ta xalia" tries to draw a parallel with a previous influenza epidemic and the alleged involvement of the American Jewish lobby to protect the interests of a “Jewish” company. Here’s where this conspiracy theory begins to unravel:

KFC (formerly known as “Kentucky Fried Chicken”) is owned by Yum! Brands, which is a publicly traded company and which, in addition to KFC, owns a number of other fast food chains worldwide. The board of Yum! Brands consists of a number of people, some of whom may or may not be Jewish and some are definitely not, judging from their surnames. The two largest individual stockholders have Italian and Chinese surnames and the major institutional stockholders are the typical banks, capital and mutual fund management companies, which invest in profitable publicly-traded corporations like Yum! Brands.

Yum! Brands has major operations in China and the company buys its “raw” materials, which is slaughtered chickens, from whomever can provide these more cheaply and certainly from local sources (so KFC in China buys China-raised chickens, KFC in Greece buys chickens from Greek chicken farms and so on). Therefore KFC has no interest whatsoever to inflate artifically chicken prices in parts of the world or cut off one of its major suppliers. Furthermore, bird flu epidemics keep recurring every few years and most of them outside China (most recently in the Netherlands, I believe). The 2002 epidemic originated not in China but in very crowded Hong Kong, which exports no chickens, but where, because of the high population density, small farm animals and birds live in close proximity to humans.

It is not clear how the outbreak of the recent influenza epidemic caused by the swine-origin A/H1N1 virus (dubbed by the media as the "swine flu"), which originated in Mexico, serves interests of Jewish companies but this is left implied in the post since the author’s fertile imagination has, by now, run out of steam. He makes the usual half-baked arguments about companies profiting from selling vaccines, which, however, are not exclusively American pharmaceutical companies. The bottom line is that antisemites will recycle old lies and fabrications in order to draw parallels with current events.

Unfortunately this is not the first time that "Ta xalia" engages in antisemitic provocation. In another recent post, a different author complains about leaflets, circulating in Thessaloniki, promoting commemoration of the Holocaust, in part because, as he argues, this happened more than 60 years ago. He then proceeds to argue that we should have been commemorating the killings of Pontian Greeks and the destruction of the Pontian Greek communities by the Turks which took place …almost 90 years ago. But this is not really the point. Indeed, official Greece and modern Greeks ought to commemorate the destruction of any vibrant and very old Greek community. It is the language that the author uses, however, which is highly objectionable. He laments that “…we did not build next to [the Jewish Holocaust] monument another monument for the Pontian Holocaust, which, as Greeks, we had and have the sacred obligation…”.

Now, Pontians were Greeks and we Greeks have an obligation to remember them. But wait a minute! The Greek Jews who were killed, were they not Greeks? Is it not the moral obligation of the citizens of Thessaloniki and of the other Greek cities with Jewish communities hundreds or even thousands years old to remember and commemorate the destruction of those communities, the deportation and murder of their neighbors, co-workers, compatriots? Well, apparently not according to the author of this post who proceeds to spout the usual conspiracy theories "linking" Zionism, Masons, the Bilderberg club, the Club of Rome, the IMF... good God, Jews everywhere! Here, in a nutshell, is one of the hallmarks of Greek antisemitism: Greek Jews are not Greeks, they are foreigners involved in conspiracies that serve their nefarious aims and, therefore, by implication they do not have Greece's interests at heart and so they deserve no monuments.


  1. Imagine... a Chinese majority shareholder, with Jewish ancestry, married to a Macedonian-Skopian of Turko-Pontian descent with George Soros as a κουμπάρος. Now that would be a conspiracy!

    Αre you going to write something nice about the 4th, or am I on my own?

  2. Don't give them any ideas...

    As for the 4th, please be my guest. Of course, the national socialist antisemites would probably view the American independence as another Zionist conspiracy against the benevolence of king George III. See a recent "article" on the matter of America in and you will see what I mean.

  3. My answer to weird franco-german-russian propaganda is:

    "O beautiful for heroes proved
    In liberating strife.
    Who more than self their country loved
    And mercy more than life!"

    I have commented before on the totally weird antiamerican verbiage found in a country whose people are suckers for anything american.

  4. Μάλλον έχετε κάποιο πρόβλημα με τα μάτια σας ε;
    Γιατί βαφτίζετε ως αντισημιτισμό μια διαφορετική άποψη;
    Ξέρετε οτι υπάρχει μια λέξη που λέγεται ''δημοκρατία'';
    Αν παρακολουθείτε τα ποστ απο το μπλόγκ taxalia θα δείτε οτι είχε και έχει πάντα δημοσιεύσεις άρθρων απο το σάιτ του και του ισραελμαν, όπως επίσης και ρεπορτάζ που έγραφαν για τις επιθέσεις στο εβραικό νεκροταφείο των Ιωαννίνων.
    Βγάλτε την κόλλα απο τα μάτια σας!

  5. Κανένα πρόβλημα με τα μάτια μου, κ. Καζαντζίδη. Εσείς όμως φαίνεται ότι έχετε πρόβλημα με τη λογική σας. Δηλαδή ισχυρίζεσθε ότι με το να δημοσιεύετε κάποιες (ας τις πούμε) "φιλοευραϊκές" αναρτήσεις ανάμεσα στις παρανοϊκές ανοησίες αντισημιτών κρατείτε ουδέτερη θέση. Είναι απλή σοφιστεία να κρύβεστε πίσω από τη "δημοκρατία" δίνοντας τόπο και μέσο έκφρασης στους αντισημίτες. Δεν είδα να είστε το ίδιο "φιλόξενος" στους υποστηρικτές της θέσης ότι η ΠΓΔΜ πρέπει να αποκαλείται απλά "Μακεδονία" ή σ΄ αυτούς που υποστηρίζουν ότι οι Μουσουλμάνοι της Δ. Θράκης είναι Τούρκοι. Παρομοίως, δεν υπάρχει ουδέτερη τοποθέτηση σε ζητήματα γενοκτονίας όπως η Εβραϊκή Σόα.