Organ harvesting and the Holocaust


British lawmaker George Galloway, who’s trying to shepherd an aid convoy into Gaza to mark the one-year anniversary of the Gaza war, penned a piece in the Scottish Daily Record saying that Israel’s recent admission that it harvested organs from dead bodies carries dark echoes of the Holocaust.

He writes:

The revelation in the Israeli parliament in recent days that the body parts of Palestinian prisoners were systematically harvested without the knowledge or consent of their families has had an impact in these parts which it is difficult to overstate.

When the story first broke, on Swedish TV, I frankly did not believe it. Implacable critic of Israel as I am, it was beyond belief that a country calling itself the "Jewish State" could ever do such a thing.

I met the correspondent responsible for the story months ago and rigorously questioned him about it. I was not satisfied, and didn’t use the information. The man was offended and I owe him an apology.

Israel has admitted this evil, wicked crime and declared it no longer practises it.

While it is to their credit that they have stopped it and even more creditable that at least within their own people robust freedom of the press and parliament has allowed the truth to come out, there is little evidence of national soul searching of how such a thing could happen.

Still less of anyone being held accountable for playing mini-Mengele on Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.

Galloway conflates the story that appeared in the Swedish daily Aftonbladet accusing Israel of kidnapping Palestinians, killing them and then harvesting their organs, with Israel’s admission that it harvested corneas from bodies, including Israeli soldiers, Palestinians and foreign workers. Other reports said Israel also used heart valves, skin and bones from the corpses without families’ permission.

While what Israel admitted to doing is horrible and reprehensible, it’s still quite different from the Swedish newspaper accusation.

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