The Reason For Potential Anti-Semitism
I. To be explained: the consistent presence of a significant anti-semitic portion of the population. What before why - historical survey - don't overestimate details of present condition
II.The most widespread human hatred
A.the ancient world
1.Egypt - Manetho (leprosy; 3rd c.B.C.E.), atheism (invisible G-d)
2.Antiochus (167 B.C.E.) - first religious persecution for 1000 years! - Apion: ritual murder
3.Roman persecution after defeat and exile
1.killers of messiah(Matt.27:25), devils (John 8:43-4,47)
2.St. John Chrysostom: synagogue=brothel, drunkenness, murder
3.libels - ritual murder (blood for matzo), poison
4.Luther: extreme persecution, "our misfortune"
1.lies - Torah laws as punishment (Quran 4:160), removed references to Muhammad from Bible (2:129, 9:32), not monotheists(!) - Ezra as son of G-d (9:30)!
2.systematic discrimination, periodic expulsion or murder
1.Voltaire: human sacrifice, revolting superstition, abominable
2.Mirabaud: anti-semitism -> Jews deserve to be hated
3.Fichte: civil rights -> Jews trample others
&&1.Marx: G-d=money, filthy, lepers
2.Fourier: parasites, emancipation=vice of society
3.Proudhon: poison, enemy, send to Asia or exterminate
F.Details of the record
1.absence in far East
2.possibility of conversion (except Nazis)
3.relative strength of hatred: enlightenment < ancient world < Islam < Left < Christianity < Nazis
1.why always the same scapegoat?
2.why hated in good times?
3.Nazis: why kill the scapegoat? Why risk defeat in WW II?
B.Economics,usury - confuses cause with effect - Jews lent money because they were denied other employment
C.Economics, riches - why hated when they were poor (19th, 20th cent. Poland, Russia)? Why not more anti-semitism in contemporary U.S.A.?
D.Psychological - anti-semitism as sickness: too widespread, why always the same object?
IV.Correct Explanation: Hatred of Competing Ideology
A.Exclusive Jewish G-d, universal morality
C.Exclusive practices, e.g. no intermarriage, dietary laws
D.Jewish nation -> dual loyalties (even before state of Israel)
V.Explanation of Facts
A.Far east - too few Jews for serious competition
B.Conversion is natural solution
C.Relative strength of hatred
.enlightenment: progress through education, Judaism too "primitive" for serious competition
2.ancient world: liberalism of polytheism: semi-competition
3.Islam: agreement on all theology, but competition for the Bible
4.The Left: violent political campaign, Jewish Ideology contradicts at all points
5.Christianity: various theological disagreements, competition for the Bible, militancy
6.Nazis: rejection of all Nazi values, impossibility of two chosen peoples, unrestricted violence
VI.Diagnosis: As long as ideological competition exits the potential for anti-semitism exists.
VII.Solutions - Long Term
A.Assimilation - unrealistic for all Jews, unfair
B.Social action - limited to sympathetic society
C.Eliminate ideological competition by persuading the world of the truth of basic Jewish ideology (but
NOT by conversion)
VIII.Solutions - Short Term
A.Depend on local conditions - natural allies based on shared basic values and world-view
B.Not conflict with long term - evaluation of custodians of the long term perspective
For further reading, see Prager and Telushkin, Why the Jews?
Simon and Schuster, 1985