Wednesday, April 11, 2012


GÜNTER GRASS OVER POEM - Israel has declared Günter Grass persona non grata, deepening a spat with the Nobel-winning author over a poem that deeply criticises the Jewish state and suggests it is as much a danger as Iran. The dispute with Grass, who only late in life admitted to a Nazi past, has drawn new attention to strains in Germany's complicated relationship with the Jewish state - and also focused unwelcome light on Israel's own secretive nuclear program. In a poem called What Must Be Said, published last Wednesday, Grass, 84, criticised what he described as Western hypocrisy over Israel's nuclear program and labelled the country a threat to “already fragile world peace” over its belligerent stance on Iran. Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman accused Grass of anti-Semitism.

The poem has touched a raw nerve in Israel, where officials have rejected any moral equivalence with Iran and been quick to note that Grass admitted only in a 2006 autobiography that he was drafted into the Waffen-SS Nazi paramilitary organisation at age 17 in the final months of World War II. Grass's subsequent clarification that his criticism was directed at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, not the country as a whole, has done little to calm the outcry. On Sunday, Israel's interior minister, Eli Yishai, announced that Grass would be barred from Israel, citing an Israeli law that allows him to prevent entry to ex-Nazis. But Yishai made clear the decision was related more to the recent poem than Grass's actions nearly 70 years ago.

Israel declared Günter Grass, one of Germany’s best-known authors, unwelcome in Israel, barring him from entering the country for a poem that accused Israel of being a threat to world peace. The poem is considered an effort to raise the flames of hatred against Israel and the Jewish people. The debate in Germany has reopened old wounds about the country’s past. Many times, it has been seen how tiny seeds of anti-Semitic hatred are transformed into a huge fire, harming all of humanity.

On an average every human is in the grip of miseries, ever since they entered in the realm of time and mind and lost the awareness of Self. Hence they are confused that why are they in grip of miseries. One yearns to get rid of misery and prolong pleasure. The greatest misery is death that hounds every living soul. Suffering is inevitable as long as one identifies with mind and body - as long as one is spiritually unconscious. ... Scriptures however say this is short-lived; Kaliyuga is the age of kalah or quarrel. The result is suffering. The cause is forgetfulness of our eternal relationship with Krishna and while remaining in such a state, indulging in various activities that lead to incremental suffering.

Śrīla B.S. Nishkinchan Mahārāja :
“How to Become Immortal”
Secretary - All India Sree Chaitanya Gaudiya Math

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