RATS

  With its cult of destruction and self-sacrifice, German National Socialism might have been designed for adolescence. Nazi Party members indulged Teutonic pagan myths and a sub-Wagnerian kitsch of death’s heads, breastplates and lances. Not all Germans were swayed by Hitler, but the majority were. Otto von Wächter, an SS-Brigadeführer and minor Austrian aristocrat, displayed a dog-like devotion to the …

A SONG OF HOPE FOR EASTER UNDER LOCKDOWN

    In Jerusalem recently I overheard a vocal music of such rare beauty that I had to stop and listen. The voice, a solemn-sounding Arabic soprano, radiated a hushed intensity of emotion and, it seemed, a deep religious sorrow. I have no Arabic, but words from the New Testament, “christos”, “Mary”, were discernable. The voice belonged to Fairuz, the …