Since the time of the late Roman Empire, Jewish communities had considerable legal powers over their members. Not only powers which arise through voluntary mobilization of social pressure (for example refusal to have any dealing whatsoever with an excommunicated Jew or even to bury his body), but a power of naked coercion: to flog, to imprison, to expel – all this could be inflicted quite legally on an individual Jew by the rabbinical courts for all kinds of offenses. In many countries – Spain and Poland are notable examples – even capital punishment could be and was inflicted, sometimes using particularly cruel methods such as flogging to death. All this was not only permitted but positively encouraged by the state authorities in both Christian and Muslim countries, who besides their general interest in preserving ‘law and order’ had in some cases a more direct financial interest as well. For example, in Spanish archives dating from the 13th and 14th centuries there are records of many detailed orders issued by those most devout Catholic Kings of Castile and Aragon, instructing their no less devout officials to co-operate with the rabbis in enforcing observance of the Sabbath by the Jews. Why? Because whenever a Jew was fined by a rabbinical court for violating the Sabbath, the rabbis had to hand nine tenths of the fine over to the king – a very profitable and effective arrangement. Similarly, one can quote from the responsa written shortly before 1832 by the famous Rabbi Moshe Sofer of Pressburg (now Bratislava), in what was then the autonomous Hungarian Kingdom in the Austrian Empire, and addressed to Vienna in Austria proper, where the Jews had already been granted some considerable individual rights. He laments the fact that since the Jewish congregation in Vienna lost its powers to punish offenders, the Jews there have become lax in matters of religious observance, and adds: ‘Here in Pressburg, when I am told that a Jewish shopkeeper dared to open his shop during the Lesser Holidays, I immediately send a policeman to imprison him.
This was the most important social fact of Jewish existence. However, once the modern state had come into existence, the Jewish community lost its powers to punish or intimidate the individual Jew.
But the social consequence of this process of liberalization was that… it became difficult to murder Jews on the order of their rabbis. For example, in the late 1830s a ‘Holy Rabbi’ (Tzadik) in a small Jewish town in the Ukraine ordered the murder of a heretic by throwing him into the boiling water of the town baths, and contemporary Jewish sources note with astonishment and horror that bribery was ‘no longer effective’ and that not only the actual perpetrators but also the Holy Man were severely punished. During 1848, when the regime’s power was temporarily weakened, the first thing the leaders of the Jewish community in the Galician city of Lemberg (now Lvov) did with their newly regained freedom was to poison the liberal rabbi of the city.
In the last 150 years… the Jews were liberated from the tyranny of their own religion… following the establishment of the State of Israel, once the rabbis felt secure, all the offensive passages and expressions were restored without hesitation in all new editions (of the Talmud.) So now one can read quite freely – and Jewish children are actually taught – passages such as that which commands every Jew, whenever passing near a cemetery, to utter a blessing if the cemetery is Jewish, but to curse the mothers of the dead if it is non-Jewish.
It is a fact which must be remembered, not least by Jews themselves, that for centuries our totalitarian society has employed barbaric and inhumane customs to poison the minds of its members, and it is still doing so. (These inhumane customs cannot be explained away as mere reaction to antisemitism or persecution of Jews: they are gratuitous barbarities directed against each and every human being. A pious Jew arriving for the first time in Australia, say, and chancing to pass near an Aboriginal graveyard, must – as an act of worship of ‘God’ – curse the mothers of the dead buried there.) Without facing this real social fact, we all become parties to the deception and accomplices to the process of poisoning the present and future generations, with all the consequences of this process.
Modern scholars of Judaism have not only continued the deception, but have actually improved upon the old rabbinical methods, both in impudence and in mendacity. I omit here the various histories of antisemitism, as unworthy of serious consideration, and shall give just three particular examples and one general example of the more modern ‘scholarly’ deceptions.
In 1962, a part of the Maimonidean Code referred to above, the so-called Book of Knowledge, which contains the most basic rules of Jewish faith and practice, was published in Jerusalem in a bilingual edition, with the English translation facing the Hebrew text. The latter has been restored to its original purity, and the command to exterminate Jewish infidels appears in it in full: ‘It is a duty to exterminate them with one’s own hands.’ In the English translation this is somewhat softened to: ‘It is a duty to take active measures to destroy them.’ But then the Hebrew text goes on to specify the prime examples of ‘infidels’ who must be exterminated: ‘Such as Jesus of Nazareth and his pupils.
Maimonides was also an anti-Black racist. Towards the end of the Guide, in a crucial chapter (book III, chapter 51) he discusses how various sections of humanity … the Blacks … according to my opinion they are not on the level of human beings, and their level among existing things is below that of a man and above that of a monkey, because they have the image and the resemblance of a man more than a monkey does.”
The Joys of Yiddish by Leo Rosten under the entry Shiksa – the feminine form of Shaygets – the author does give the original Hebrew word, sheqetz (or, in his transliteration, sheques) and defines its Hebrew meaning as ‘blemish’. This is a bare-faced lie, as every speaker of Hebrew knows. The Megiddo Modern Hebrew-English Dictionary, published in Israel, correctly defines shegetz as follows: ‘unclean animal; loathsome creature, abomination (colloquial – pronounced shaygets) wretch, unruly youngster; Gentile youngster’.
Let us take the famous Hatanya, fundamental book of the Habbad movement, one of the most important branches of Hassidism. According to this book, all non-Jews are totally satanic creatures ‘in whom there is absolutely nothing good’.
According to the testimony of Shulamit Aloni, Member of the Knesset, this Habbad propaganda was particularly stepped up before Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in March 1978, in order to induce military doctors and nurses to withhold medical help from ‘Gentile wounded’.
Martin Buber, the author of I and Thou, glorified a movement holding and actually teaching doctrines about non-Jews not unlike the Nazi doctrines about Jews.
But we can derive from this analysis another, more general conclusion about the most effective and horrific means of compulsion to do evil, to cheat and to deceive and, while keeping one’s hands quite clean of violence, to corrupt whole peoples and drive them to oppression and murder. (For there can no longer be any doubt that the most horrifying acts of oppression in the West Bank are motivated by Jewish religious fanaticism.)
Note: I will be issuing condensed versions of the remaining 4 chapters of Israel Shahak’s Jewish History, Jewish Religion: The Weight of Three Thousand Years from time to time.
The above was taken from chapter 2 Prejudice and Prevarication which you can find here:
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