Monday, May 30, 2005

Breaking a Vicious Circle

Israel Shahak, when he researched Jewish history over the last 2000 years, was in his book " Jewish Religion Jewish History" describing a pattern, .
Jews have been both in Muslim and in Christian society outsiders, who sometimes had been isolated by decree of some political authority, most often however they have isolated themselves and walled themselves in, so that the lower class Jews had little contact to their Christian or Muslim neighbour. The contacts the upper class had with gentiles was one of hostile business dealings at least towards the lower classes of the gentiles.
Most often those upper class Jews worked as some kind of middle men between the king or other aristocratic rulers and the peasant and artisan population. They were very good tax collectors, even in times when the peasants had problems paying. They also became monopoly money lenders, since the taking of interests was forbidden in Christian and Muslim society. In both professions they put a lot of hardship on the gentile peasants. And when the pressure became unbearable, riots and progroms occured.
And then the whole Jewish community was attacked not only the oppressors.
And I think, that the ordinary Jews who had not done anything to hurt the gentiles, most often had never even had direct contact with them, didn´t even know what hit them.
They were probably told that the gentiles had gone crazy like gentiles normally do once in a while.
One other pattern was, that when the Jewish upper class had a very good contact to the ruling king, the gentile aristrocracy had very little to say. However when this aristocracy became stronger, they pushed the king or the Church to get rid of the Jews, because the Jews were in direct competition with them for power at the court.
This time the Jews were forced to leave the country, leaving their homes and most of their possessions.
And again the ordinary Jews did not know what hit them.
And so hostility and distrust grew with every of those occations. And so besides certain attitudes in the Talmud it was also those memories of past abuses which made Jews even less ready to show compassion in their dealings with their gentile neighbours.
And there was hostility and distrust on both sides over and over again.
Israel Shahak took the Nazi persecution of Jews out of this pattern. And he thought that modern antisemitism has totally different quality from that of earlier years, since it is far more racist.
Maybe this is right in one way, since in older times Jews were allowed to fully integrate into gentile society, if they converted honestly.
The differences were religious not racist.
But if you overlook the racist aspect, a similar pattern seems to be visible in the beginning of the 20.century as well.
In the Balfour declaration the head of the Rothschild family got the promise of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, if he could get the Americans to join the war against Germany on the British.
Maybe the Americans would have joined anyway for their own reasons. But one way or the other the Germans believed that their defeat was the fault of the Jews.
The heavy reparation payments were pressed unto Germany and the ordinary people suffered. The only ones who actually profited were banks which were in a good part in Jewish hands. The anger of big parts of German middle class, who had lost their life savings grew. The industrial class saw the Jewish banking elite a direct encroachment on their own business and so they helped Hitler with his radical antisemitic rhetoric come to power, so he could ban the Jews from business and public life as he had promised.
And so the hate propaganda campaign began which then led to terrible Jewish suffering. And once again the ordinary Jewish had no idea what hit them.
They had been well integrated in all parts of German society and lived as equals and very often as friends with their German neighbours. They sure that the Hitler times would blow over and things would return to normal, that they didn´t even leave the country when their citizen rights were taken and they had to suffer all kind of discriminations.
And the cynical Zionists who instigated the whole affair and profited from it to the boot, were telling each other, that "one cow in Palestine is worth more than all the Jews of Europe" and did nothing whatsoever to save the European Jews. Instead they sometimes even sabotaged efforts to help Jews to emmigrate from Europe, efforts made by compationate gentiles in other countries.
After the war, they treated the survivors with disdain. And when it suited them, they lit fire under the paranoia caused by this terrible trauma.

And thanks to those cynics, many ordinary Jews who had been liberated from the ghetto after the Enlightenment are isolating themselves again behind psychological walls and in the case of Israel the walls are physical, isolating themselves in fear and deep distrust against gentiles.
And the way it looks like with the Neocons in Washington and the Likudniks in Israel pushing for a new round of the vicious circle by oppressing Palestinians to the edge of absolute despair, destroying other Arab societies and through their expansive warmongering the American military and the American economy at the same time.

But we do no longer live in the middle ages, the ghetto is no longer obligatory and information can flow freely.
For their own sake, ordinary Jews have to break this vicious circle. They have to distance themselves from leaders who show just as much contempt for their Jewish brothers and sisters as they show for gentiles.
Those leaders are either dumb enough to have not learned anything from history or they are just so full of themselves, so full of hybris, that they think they can get away with anything.

But so many ordinary Jews have been integrated in the societies of all the countries they live in, except in Palestine.
Ordinary Jews work in many humanitarian causes. They have universal ethics which they share with their gentile neighbours and they have friendly relationships with them.
Ordinary Jews do not need to protect criminals who call themselves the leaders of Jewish society.
They have to realize that their safety does not lie with those warmongering zynics, who have already brainwashed the Israelis into committing terrible crimes.
Their safety lies with us, their brothers and sisters in humanity.
They have to denounce Zionism and the belief that gentiles cannot be trusted.
They have to realize that the golden rule, which is also part of the OT, applies towards everybody in absolute the same. Only this way we can live in peace with each other.

The vicious circle can be broken, there still is time, but it´s running out soon.