Long, 13 pages.
This just got a massive rewrite, plus it’s being run on Unz.com! If you want, you can follow me over there to comment or just comment here if you want. Their comment section is a little more lively. I thought this article was very fair-minded towards Jewish people and was not antisemitic at all.
Perhaps there are some lessons they might want to learn from this post, but I doubt if most of them will bother. It’s an attempt at a rather simple answer to a very complex question.
Why on Earth were the Jews so massively persecuted, pogromed, and thrown out of countries in Europe for 1,000 years when there had not been much of this before?
The Jews’ answer, which most Gentiles have swallowed, is that Jews were dindus. They dindu nuffin. Everybody was just picking on and scapegoating them.
According to Jews, antisemitism is a mysterious illness that descends on Jews like a dark poison cloud with no motivation, rhyme or reason. It’s a mystery. Huge numbers of Gentiles just start hating Jews and often persecuting and even harming them for absolutely no reason whatsoever. Except just to be dicks I guess.
This is a very self-serving narrative for the Jews, but let’s not forget that it takes two to tango. Increasingly I have not bought this line, and in recent years I have thought more and more that these people must have done something bad that really pissed off the Christians.
Yet Jews en masse continue to recite this narrative to this day. I call it the mystification of antisemitism. Most students of antisemitism are Jewish. I can’t think of a worse group of people to study antisemitism than Jews. Hard antisemites won’t be good either for the opposite reason.
Both groups are far too attached to the Jews one way or another to be objective about them. Recently I have come to believe that groups cannot be objective about themselves and rational critique can only be done by outsiders stepping back from the problem. Scholars of antisemitism should be neither Jewish (except a few), Judeophlic Gentiles, or hard antisemitic Gentiles. They should be Gentiles who are neither Judeophilic nor strongly antisemitic. Only objective minds can answer historical mystery questions.
My answer: the Jews went from relatively open and expansive, proselytizing, and converting religion under Torah Judaism to a much more closed off, anti-prosyletizing, anti-conversion, walled-in Talmudic Judaism which contained a massive dose of hatred for non-Jews along with an extremely supremacist attitude among Jews themselves. Jews were not exactly good neighbors under this new religion and obviously they pissed off their Christian neighbors quickly.
The Christians often responded with crimes, murders, atrocities, pogroms, and expulsion. In short they deal with a group of rude, hostile, unfriendly assholish (none of which is illegal) neighbors by perpetrating some serious crimes and violations of their human rights. They hit a cloud of mosquitoes with a baseball bat.
As these crimes against the Jews increased, the Jews logically just got even more hostile and hateful towards Christians. It makes complete sense. And perhaps with the continuing off and on presence of unpleasant and mean Jews in their midst at regular intervals, Christians may have gotten angrier and angrier at the Jews over time also.
I feel that this whole period of the Jews’ stay in Europe was a massive tragedy. If the Jews wish to find some nuggets of good here and there, all the power to them. But to me it seems sad and especially tragic for both sides, the Jews and the Christians. Crimes were committed against the Jews and Christians were insulted and treated contemptuously by Jews.
Furthermore resorting to serious crimes when the Jews were guilty of little more than acting like assholes massively degraded the Christians themselves in a moral sense. The criminal degrades not only his victim but himself by becoming a criminal in the first place. There are no winners in crime. Some people think they are, but I doubt it. At the least there is moral injury.
It’s clear now that Palestinians are simply Israelites, Judeans, or Jews who converted to Christianity and then to Islam.
The Khazarian Empire converted to Judaism in the 800’s. These people were basically Turkic with an Asiatic component, so they would not look exactly like Europeans as the Khazarian Theory suggests.
I was an acquaintance of Kevin Brook, a Jewish man who wrote the definitive book on the Khazarian Empire. The genetics were hard to entangle, but 1
Ron Unz: …apparently being the descendants of a few hundred (presumably Jewish) Middle Easterners, mostly male, who settled in Southern Europe some time after the Fall of Rome and took local Northern Italian wives…
I concur. Ron notes that this group was very small and may have been mostly men. So of course they married local women. They also married Northern Italian women, who are quite fair. So this could be why so many Ashkenazi look so White or even Nordic. At the very least they do not look like Mediterranean.
In the first 500 years the Jews were in Europe in large numbers, they were in Southern Europe, primarily in Italy and to a lesser extent in Greece. They stayed there for 500 years and in that time for whatever reason (Perhaps they didn’t bring any women with them?) the men married heavily with pre-Christian pagan and Christian Gentile women. I assume that all of these women converted. So here Shlomo Sand’s hypothesis is validated, as a lot of Gentile European genes went into the Jewish gene pool.
This was before Talmudic Judaism with its hatred for the Other came in, as the Talmud did not start being written down until 600 AD in Jerusalem.
After the completion of the Babylonian Talmud in 900 AD and its adoption, Jews started to move up to Northern Europe, settling heavily in the Rhine Valley in Germany (although Jews were present here as early as 300 AD), which remained the heart of German Jewry until WW2. In fact, the dialect of the city of Spier in that region is actually intelligible with Yiddish, so this implies that Yiddish came from this region. But some Slavic and Hebrew has also gone into Yiddish.
At this time, Talmudic Judaism had taken over Judaism, and Jews were ordered to not make friends or certainly have sex with Gentiles. However, Jewish men continued to have sex with Gentile women with no real penalty. As in the South when White men had sex and children with Black women and the children were then lost to the Whites, these offspring were simply lost to the Jews.
There were strong prohibitions against Jewish women having sex with Gentile men. In Medieval Spain, the punishment for a woman having sex with a Gentile was to have her nose cut off! So the real idea was to keep Jewish women having children with only Jewish men. Guarding your women from sex and marriage with outsiders is a typical tribal trait. As far as why Jews trace their ancestry via their mothers, my mother said,
You always know who your mother is! Not so with your father.
It is also important to note that the Jews liked living in those European ghettos, and they typically had more money and lived better and longer in those ghettos than Gentiles did outside of them. In fact, the Jews even built some of those ghettos themselves to keep their own people apart the Gentiles. This is also when the anti-Christian prayers and behaviors like spitting in the direction of a church or priest if you saw one came in.
I noticed that prior to 1000 AD under Torah Judaism (still practiced by Karaites today), the Jews were not thrown out of a lot of places. After that time however, they were getting thrown out a dozen times a year from various locales.
This was not always a good thing. I recall in one case the king threw out the Jews, but then the economy went down. Within three years he was asking for the Jews to come back. This reminds me of Robert Mugabe asking the Whites to come back to Zimbabwe to farm after they were thrown out of the country.
I think it’s pretty clear that we can correlate the pogroms and persecutions of the Jews in large part due to their switch to Talmudic Judaism with its hatred and contempt for Gentiles. The Jews were always a minority. To be a minority who hates the majority with a passion is almost a death sentence. It’s no surprise that they alienated and angered the Christians.
One critique of this argument was made in the Unz forum where a commenter said to not make this all about the Talmud, and that the Torah itself is basically a “book of hatred and war.” Well, of course it is, but that’s different. It’s just about the history of the Jews fighting wars with most (though not all) of their neighbors and genociding them when they won.
But this was probably a pretty typical way to fight wars in those days, and it’s very similar to the histories of tribal groups in the Americas who were not infrequently involved in near-constant warfare with many if not all of the surrounding tribes. The tribes they were not at war with had sometimes been enslaved.
The only difference was that the Jews genocided their enemies, while the general trend at the time was to murder all the adult men and enslave all of the boys and women. Indeed many tribal wars even into recent times in the Amazon were done for the purpose of acquiring women for the tribe.
It is true that there were already prohibitions against Jews marrying out, but a lot of tribes, ethnic groups, and even religions have traditions like that even to this day in that part of the world. It’s tribal behavior, nothing new. Also, the Jews were allowed to marry into twelve different small Canaanite tribes around them, so the out-marriage rule was not total.
It is true also that the Jews of Jesus’ time already saw themselves as superior to non-Jews. They were after all the first monotheists, and monotheism is indeed an upgrade over barbarous polytheism. They looked down on their neighbors as worshipers of graven objects and idolators similarly to how modern Protestants call Catholics idol worshipers for putting Mary on a par with Jesus Himself. Nevertheless, the extreme Gentile hatred that came to characterize Talmudic Judaism was nonexistent at this point.
To this day, Orthodox Jews refer to Christians as idol worshipers. Technically, Talmudic Judaism says Christians as idol worshipers deserve to be killed for that practice, not that any Jews ever carry this out.
The extremists of Salafist Sunni Islam are also like this. One of the things they hate about the Shia is that they venerate Hussein and Ali nearly to the point of putting them on a par with Mohammad. In Shia culture, portraits of these men that look suspiciously like portraits of the White Jesus Christians are quite common on the walls of people’s homes.
Salafists also hate graveyards as they say the stones are idols. Is this where “graven objects” comes from? They also hate Sufism, especially Sufi shrines which are simply the tombs of Sufi saints. Sufis often pray at these shrines. Salafists say that the shrines are idols.
Along similar but different lines Salafists dislike intercessionary prayer, and it is also banned as being similar to idol worship. One is putting a third entity (the intercession itself) in between oneself and God, and this is a violation of the One God principle. Indeed Muslims and Jews seem to be in a contest to see who can have the most monotheistic religion of all.
Also, before and at least the first 500 years after the Fall of the Second Temple (where the religion became more Gentile-hating), Judaism was a proselytizing religion with an easy conversion process. Obviously a proselytizing religion seems to be making a mistake by being hostile towards nonbelievers. Surely you have to be nice to them in order to convert them, no? Although Islam adds a coercion factor that seems to go against this.
But there was a strong prohibition against Jews converting out. During this period around the year 300, a report from Cyprus about Jewish fanaticism noted that there were Christian attempts to force Jews to convert to Christianity by force. The Jews were so opposed to converting out that would often kill themselves and even their own children in ritual suicide to prevent themselves from being converted. To this day, Judaism is very much against converting out.
I have witnessed tribal Jews acting extremely hostile towards Jews who have converted to Christianity. Their attitude has a tone of outrage, as if this were the worst thing one could possibly do. An extreme ban on out-conversion could also result in hatred for the Other. Certainly it results in hatred for Christian proselytizers. This is illegal in Israel and fanatical Jews often attack Christian missionaries. There have been arson attacks on their mission buildings.
Of course Islam shares an even more extreme version of out-conversion which they call apostasy. It is a crime for which the punishment is death. Then again, Islam shares with Judaism considerable hatred of people outside their religion, referred to as infidels or kufr in Islam and goys in Judaism. A similar attitude in Christianity towards heretics has long since gone by the wayside.
All of this implies an extreme rootedness that Jews have for Judaism, almost as if they are locked into the religion or identity with rubber cement. Indeed, traditional Judaism always denied, like Catholicism, that out-conversion was even possible.
The doctrine was that if you were born of a Jewish mother, you were a Jew, period, for life, and your atheism or conversion to whatever other religion is irrelevant. Two Catholic priests recently tried to immigrate to Israel based on the notion that they were still Jewish. It was a very controversial case as their immigration was denied.
An extreme form of rootedness leads to extreme tribalism or ethnocentrism, which tends to lead to hatred of everyone not from the tribe or group. The correlation with nationalism and especially ultranationalism is no accident.
For the first hundred years after Christ’s death, Jews were still very rooted to Judaism.
In some ways, Jesus’ Judaism seems more a form of super-radical Reform Judaism than anything else. Jesus lived and died a Jew and kept kosher his whole life even at the Last Supper. During this period, only Jews were allowed to become Christians, so the idea of the Judaism of this time as a supercharged Reform Judaism seems to fit. After Paul’s Road to Damascus revelation, he became the first Gentile to convert to Judaism.
From 60-100 AD, non-Jews were slowly allowed to convert to Christianity, and it truly became a universalist religion like Islam, especially in its Catholic form. Notice that both religions mirror each other with their idea that conversion is really reversion, as all humans are born either Catholics in the case of Catholicism or Muslims in the case of Islam. In both cases converts are referred to as reverts.
Obviously the men who took Gentile wives in Europe had them convert to Judaism. It must have been a much more simple process than conversion is nowadays. My mother always said if you want to convert to Judaism, a rabbi will always look at you like you’re crazy and ask you incredulously,
Why do you want to be a Jew?
as if no sane person would want to become such a thing if they were not one already. I know because I considered converting for my long-term Jewish girlfriend a few years back. A religion that makes it very difficult to convert into would seem to be more hostile towards outsiders.
In the 300’s, a large kingdom in Yemen called the Himyarite Kingdom converted to Judaism. A king converted and then he forced all of this subjects to convert too. This was before the age of Islam, so like the converts in Mohammad’s time, all of the new Jews were coming from paganism to Judaism.
The Khazars mass-converted on orders from their king in the 800’s, so it looks like ease of conversion was still in effect this late. The Khazars seem to be lost to the winds of time, but perhaps after this Kingdom fell, there was mass conversion to Orthodox Christianity or even Islam.
There is a very old group of Jews in Crimea that may date back to this period who speak a particular dialect of Crimean Tatar, a Turkic language, called Krymchak. Krymchak is nearly extinct now with only a few speakers in their 80’s. The Krymchak language was a victim of the Holocaust as 7
It stands to reason that this group may be made up of the last remains of the Khazarians. There is a similar Turkic Jewish language called Karaim that is also close to Crimean Tatar.
It has three forms, a Crimean form which went extinct a hundred years ago, an East European Polish-Lithuanian one called Trakai, and a southwestern form spoken in Eastern Ukraine called Halich which has only a few elderly speakers. Halich and Trakai are so different that they can’t understand each other. The Karaim may also be the remains of the Khazarians and the East European Karaim may be Khazarians who moved from Crimea to Poland and Lithuania.
While the Krymchak fared very poorly in World War 2, the Karaim, also in Crimea but practicing Karaite or Torah Judaism, were spared as Nazi anthropologists decided that non-Talmudic or Torah Jews were not really Jewish for Nazi purposes, as Nazis only considered Talmudic Judaism to be the true Jewish religion.
This ease of conversion seems to tie in with lower levels of Gentile hatred. As Gentile hatred got worse, Judaism became more of a closed club, and converting in become more and more difficult as if they seemed to not even want any converts.
The idea that no one can convert into your religion would appear to also lead to isolation and hatred for outsiders, but it is still fairly common in the Middle East with Alawites, Druze, Yezidis, and Zoroastrians and in South Asia with the Jains all disallowing converts. I never understood this as it always seemed to me that a religion that banned converts would not be long for this world.
This also somehow seems tied in with an almost caste-like system between priests and non-priests. For instance, the Yezidis still practice casteism and have five different levels of caste. It also seems related to the hiding of Holy Books which can only be accessed by priests and are not available to average worshipers. Any religion that jealously guards its holy books even from its own people is set up for hostility to outsiders.
Indeed it was not until ~1900 that outsiders finally gained access to Yezidi holy books and tried to figure out this very confusing religion which seems to have a lot in common with Zoroastrianism, perhaps even resulting from a Zoroastrian split. A heavy layer of Sunni Islam from the early days of Islam via a heterodox Muslim preacher was then layered on top of that. Sycretism is common in all of these religions. The Alawites even include Jesus in their pantheon.
Similarly to these other Middle Eastern religions, in the Middle Ages, the Talmud, the holy book of Talmudic Judaism, was forbidden to be accessed by outsiders. The punishment for any outsider reading the Talmud or even accessing it was death. Any religion like that is obviously going to be very hostile to outsiders.