A Quote from Jesus that Perfectly Fits the Situation

Yesterday I put up a post on the book  Judaism’s Strange Gods that included a video with comments by a member of Neturei Karta, the group of religious Jews who have called for the dismantling of the state of Israel. In the video, the NK member talks about Jews in Israel who, through such acts as refusing to serve in the Israeli military, have suffered retribution. He refers to such people as having been arrested, beaten, and in some cases even murdered.

It seems very much as if Jewish leaders are leading their people over a cliff. In this, they are not dissimilar from the leaders of America. (No surprise that the two countries have such a “special relationship.”) How does one free oneself from leaders like this? We are talking, of course, about leaders who hold enormous power and who are ever intent upon accruing even more power to themselves. Power to control as many people as possible. A quote from Jesus sums up the situation perfectly–and indeed offers us a way out:

To the Jews who had believed in him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

To Jews who have suffered persecution for taking a moral stand against Israel: Jesus was the Jewish messiah. Shortly before his death in 30 A.D. he predicted the destruction of Jerusalem. Almost exactly 40 years later what he predicted came to pass. Now we have “modern day Pharisees,” as it were, playing with fire in a quest for global hegemony–foolishly providing support for terrorists while attempting to ignite a conflict with Russia (and seemingly coming ever closer to succeeding). Jesus was sent by God to teach humanity how to live at peace with one another. If we follow his teachings, the planet will survive and the human species along with it. If not, we won’t. We are all part of God’s creation, and as such we must learn to love and care for each other–this is Jesus’ teaching in a nutshell. And if we follow that teaching, and if we learn that truth, we will be set free.

Discussion on ‘Judaism’s Strange Gods’…plus, Revisiting the ‘Celebrate Israel’ Parade

Recently We Hold These Truths uploaded a podcast featuring a discussion on the book, “Judaism’s Strange Gods,” by Michael Hoffman. The following is the program description:

Many Christians, especially Christian Zionists, believe that the religion of Judaism today is the same as was the religion of the Israelites of the Old Testament, except there are no animal sacrifices now. We Hold These Truths‘ Craig Hanson does an excellent job delving into the subject and analyzing Michael Hoffman’s book, “Judaism’s Strange Gods.”

In the book, Christian scholar Michael Hoffman documents his provocative thesis that Judaism is not the religion of the Old Testament, but the newly formalized belief system of the Pharisees, which arose in Babylon with the commitment of the formally, oral traditions of the elders to writing, in the wake of the crucifixion of Israels Messiah and the destruction of the Temple. Basing his findings on authoritative Judaic sources, Hoffman demonstrates that Judaism is a man-made religion of tradition and superstition, which represents the institutionalized nullification of Biblical law and doctrine. Liberating the reader from the accumulated shackles of decades of misinformation, this book that shows that Judaism’s god is not the God of Israel, but the strange gods of Talmud and Kabbalah, and the racial self-worship they inculcate. (23 minutes)

And here is a brief excerpt from Hoffman’s preface to the book:

Click here to listen to the full podcast

Also, while on the subject of the “strange gods” of Judaism…a couple of days ago I put up a post about Nouf Infiaat, the young Palestinian girl who sought martyrdom by attacking an Israeli soldier on June 1, her last day of school. In that same post, I also mentioned (and included a video of) a “Celebrate Israel” parade that was held in New York City two days after Nouf’s death.

There were of course some protestors at that parade, and among these were members of the Orthodox Jewish group Neturei Karta. Below is an NK video of the event, including comments from one of the group’s members who refers to the state of Israel as “a rebellion against God” and who characterizes Zionism at one point as a “machine of Satan.” It’s a rather astounding video for a couple of reasons. One reason I say that is for what he says. The other is the plastic covering he and other members of the group can be see wearing upon their hats:

When I first watched this video I found myself puzzling over the plastic hat covers. My first thought was, “well, maybe it’s some kind of Jewish ritual, or something.” It wasn’t until I finally listened to the We Hold These Truths podcast that it finally clicked on me. In the latter part of the podcast, the subject of NK actually comes up. Tom Compton, one of the hosts of the program, mentions an NK rabbi who spoke at an event in Tucson at the University of Arizona and was “spat upon by Jewish students there.” That’s when it hit me what the plastic hat covers were most likely for.

Another thing I find striking about the video is the emotion, and what clearly seems to be anguish on the NK member’s face, as he discusses (starting at about 5:40) those Jews, particularly Jews inside of Israel, it seems, who have taken a stand against the Israeli government by such things as refusing to serve in the Israeli military. He refers to such people as being “murdered” as well as “arrested and brutally beaten.” The details of this he doesn’t get into, nor does he name any names, but certainly it’s worth keeping in mind that there are some Jews (not nearly a majority but the number does seem to be growing) who have taken a moral stand against the state of Israel and who in some cases have done so at considerable personal cost to themselves. This is, I think, something the rest of us may tend to forget about much of the time. We should try and remember it.

Finally, one other point of summation on the “strange gods” of Judaism–and this also perhaps ties in with the NK member’s comments about the “machine of Satan.” In his book, Jewish History Jewish Religion: the Weight of Three Thousand Years, Israel Shahak discusses certain instances in which Jews who follow the Cabbala will at times offer up prayers to propitiate Satan:

Or take another example: both before and after a meal, a pious Jew ritually washes his hands, uttering a special blessing. On one of these two occasions he is worshiping God, by promoting the divine union of Son and Daughter; but on the other he is worshiping Satan, who likes Jewish prayers and ritual acts so much that when he is offered a few of them it keeps him busy for a while and he forgets to pester the divine Daughter. Indeed, the cabbalists believe that some of the sacrifices burnt in the Temple were intended for Satan.

My hope is that some day Christian Zionists will experience a cathartic awakening to some of this stuff, but it’s highly unlikely they will ever hear about it from their church pastors. Sadly, they seem mesmerized by the “carnal awe in which contemporary Judaic people are adored”, as Hoffman phrases it.

Vigil to Be Held Outside Christian Zionist Convention in Phoenix June 13-14

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I received this email a couple of days ago from We Hold These Truths concerning an upcoming meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention to take place in Phoenix, Arizona.  As the email relates, WHTT will be holding a vigil outside the convention.

Attention Palestinian Peace Pals:

On June 13 (Tues.) and June 14, 2017 about 5000 Southern Baptists will descend upon Phoenix at the Phoenix Convention Center for their annual meeting. Last year in St. Louis, the SBC (Southern Baptist Convention) passed a resolution supporting Israel (see: “Southern Baptists Reject Peace Plea By Palestinian Pastor,” “Palestinian Pastor Confronts His Fellow Southern Baptist Church Leaders” and, before the 2003 war on Iraq, Richard Land of the SBC and other prominent, evangelical Christian leaders sent a letter to President George Bush stating that a war against Iraq would be a “Just War” according to their interpretation of the Bible. It was not a “Just War” as was reviewed in our 23 minute podcast:  “Will Southern Baptists Become Peacemakers?”

We would love to have you join us at the Phoenix Convention Center and challenge the attendees with signs like: “Choose Life Not War,” “Who Would Jesus Bomb?” “Blessed Are The Peacemakers,” “Where Are The Peacemakers?” “No More Wars For Israel” and “Gaza: Innocent Blood On Our Hands” and help pass out fliers.

Here is our vigil schedule for the convention (the Southern Baptist Convention program, SBC-2017Program.pdf is attached:

What: Vigil For Peace & Justice For Palestine at the Southern Baptist Convention’s 2017 Annual Meeting

Where: Phoenix Convention Center (North): 100 N 3rd Street,Phoenix, AZ 85004 (Map)

When:
Tues., Jun 13, 2017
1. 7:30 am to 9:00 am
2. 11:45 am to 1:30 pm
3. 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm

Wed., Jun 14, 2017
1. 7:30 am to 9:00 am
2. 11:45 am to 1:30 pm
3. 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm

If you can’t join us, take a look at our four minute video, “Challenging A War Willing Church,” and help us promote it. You’ve got your choice where to send to your friends to view it:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pg/weholdthesetruthsPSG/videos/?ref=page_internal

WHTT website: http://whtt.org/challenging-war-willing-church/

YouTube: https://www.facebook.com/pg/weholdthesetruthsPSG/videos/?ref=page_internal

***

[ Ed. note – Christian Zionism has had an enormously corrupting influence on the Christian faith. It is a heresy, basically, that has turned followers of the teachings of Jesus into supporters of war crimes and apartheid. But where did it come from, how did it get started, and who promoted it? These questions are explored in the following article by Maidhc Ó Cathail. ]

The Scofield Bible: The Book that Made Zionists of America’s Evangelical Christians

 photo scofield_zpsqwtq09yz.gifBy Maidhc Ó Cathail

Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

“For a nation to commit the sin of anti-Semitism brings inevitable judgement.”

—The New Scofield Study Bible

Since it was first published in 1909, the Scofield Reference Bible has made uncompromising Zionists out of tens of millions of Americans. When John Hagee, the founder of Christians United for Israel (CUFI), said that “50 million evangelical bible-believing Christians unite with five million American Jews standing together on behalf of Israel,” it was the Scofield Bible that he was talking about.

Although the Scofield Reference Bible contains the text of the King James Authorized Version, it is not the traditional Protestant bible but Cyrus I. Scofield’s annotated commentary that is problematic. More than any other factor, it is Scofield’s notes that have induced generations of American evangelicals to believe that God demands their uncritical support for the modern State of Israel.

Blessing Israel, Cursing Its Critics

Central to Christian Zionist belief is Scofield’s commentary (italicized below) on Genesis 12:3:

“‘I will bless them that bless thee.’ In fulfillment closely related to the next clause, ‘And curse him that curseth thee.’ Wonderfully fulfilled in the history of the dispersion. It has invariably fared ill with the people who have persecuted the Jew—well with those who have protected him. The future will still more remarkably prove this principle.”

Drawing on Scofield’s rather tendentious interpretation, Hagee claims,

“The man or nation that lifts a voice or hand against Israel invites the wrath of God.”

But as Stephen Sizer points out in his definitive critique, Christian Zionism: Road-map to Armageddon? (available from AET’s Middle East Books and More): “The promise, when referring to Abraham’s descendants, speaks of God blessing them, not of entire nations ‘blessing’ the Hebrew nation, still less the contemporary and secular State of Israel.”

Notwithstanding this more orthodox reading, The New Scofield Study Bible, published by Oxford University Press in 1984, intensified Scofield’s interpretation by adding,

“For a nation to commit the sin of anti-Semitism brings inevitable judgement.”

“Sustained by a dubious exegesis of selective biblical texts,” Sizer concludes, “Christian Zionism’s particular reading of history and contemporary events…sets Israel and the Jewish people apart from other peoples in the Middle East…it justifies the endemic racism intrinsic to Zionism, exacerbates tensions between Jews and Palestinians and undermines attempts to find a peaceful resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, all because ‘the Bible tells them so.’”

The Incredible Scofield

In his 2008 book, The Rise of Israel: A History of a Revolutionary State, Jonathan R. Adelman describes the crucial support Israel receives from Christian fundamentalists as “totally fortuitous.” That assertion is belied, however, by the incredible career of the man who wrote “the Bible of Fundamentalism.”

Two years after Scofield’s reported conversion to Christianity in 1879, the Atchison Patriot was less than impressed. Describing the former Atchison resident as the “late lawyer, politician and shyster generally,” the article went on to recount a few of Scofield’s “many malicious acts.” These included a series of forgeries in St. Louis, for which he was sentenced to six months in jail.

Being a “born again” preacher did not preclude Scofield from becoming a member of an exclusive New York men’s club in 1901, either. In his devastating biography, The Incredible Scofield and His Book, Joseph M. Canfield suggests, “The admission of Scofield to the Lotus Club, which could not have been sought by Scofield, strengthens the suspicion that has cropped up before, that someone was directing the career of C.I. Scofield.”

That someone, Canfield suspects, was associated with one of the club’s committee members, the Wall Street lawyer Samuel Untermeyer. As Canfield intimates, Scofield’s theology was “most helpful in getting Fundamentalist Christians to back the international interest in one of Untermeyer’s pet projects—the Zionist Movement.”

Others have been even more explicit about the nature of Scofield’s service to the Zionist agenda. In “Unjust War Theory: Christian Zionism and the Road to Jerusalem,” Prof. David W. Lutz writes, “Untermeyer used Scofield, a Kansas City lawyer with no formal training in theology, to inject Zionist ideas into American Protestantism. Untermeyer and other wealthy and influential Zionists whom he introduced to Scofield promoted and funded the latter’s career, including travel in Europe.”

On one of these European trips, Oxford University Press publisher Henry Frowde “expressed immediate interest” in Scofield’s project. According to a biography of Frowde, although the OUP publisher was “[n]ot demonstrative in his religious views, all his Christian life he was associated with brethren known as ‘Exclusive.’” The “Exclusive Brethren” refers to the group of Christian evangelicals that, in an 1848 split in the Plymouth Brethren, followed John Nelson Darby, the Anglo-Irish missionary generally considered to have been the most influential figure in the development of Christian Zionism, and a major influence on Scofield.

Continued here

Avengers 80 – Come and meet us…

April 29, 2017  /  Gilad Atzmon

https://theatre80.wordpress.com

The Post Political Condition

Trump, Brexit, the Middle East… What Next?

5 pm an extended panel discussion, then a jazz concert from 9 pm

5pm Sunday, 30 April

Theatre 80, 80 St. Marks Place
New York, NY 10003
USA

$10 suggested donation, cash only at the door

On 30 April human rights lawyer Stanley Cohen, history professor Norton Mezvinsky, whistleblower Michael Lesher  and author Gilad Atzmon will gather in Theatre 80, Manhattan to elaborate on the collapse of Identity politics, the crisis within new Left thinking and the future of liberal and progressive thought.

Tom Kiely – Opening Words

Stanley Cohen: The Insular View of the American Left  

Professor Norton Mezvinsky: The Quagmire of Current Political Terminology in U.S. Society

Michael Lesher – Jewish Identity vs. Jewish Religion

Gilad Atzmon: The Tyranny of Correctness – deconstructing identity politics and understanding its origin

The Questions Jonathan Ofir Prefers to Avoid

The Questions Jonathan Ofir Prefers to Avoid

April 27, 2017  /  Gilad Atzmon

Introduction by Gilad Atzmon:

In February 2016 a friend encouraged me to pay attention to a new Jewish dissident voice, Jonathan Ofir, an Israeli musician who didn’t agree with Zionism.  I watched Ofir’s statement , I detected a positive humanist inclination, I could see a glimpse of ethical thinking but I could also easily notice the usual duplicity but was hoping to be wrong. Since, at the time,  Ofir seemed to me a novice in the ‘anti Zionist business’ I let him enjoy the benefit of a doubt. I approached Ofir and asked to interview him. Ofir, initially reacted in a friendly and positive manner, he was happy to engage immediately in a phone interview but I actually insisted upon a written one, just to remove any possibility of me changing his words or taking them out of context. Ofir, once again agreed to a written exchange. However, this changed once he received the questions below. Within a short while I learned from him that he had to decline.  “This would be my first interview politically, and it’s not the focus I want to get into,” were Ofir’s exact words.

I never published this story. Ofir seemed to me an intelligent boy. I wanted to believe that time would make him into a truth teller, one who could point at the dark forces that fuel the Zionist project, organised Jewry and the controlled opposition.

I was obviously wrong. Ofir was quick to become a JVP merchant, a dedicated Jewish gatekeeper. I recently read a disgusting private exchange between Ofir and a peace activist where Ofir used the most abusive crypto Zionist tactics and argumentation (antisemitism, holocaust denial you name it.) I have since then witnessed Ofir disseminating the usual kosher progressive mantra. I am not impressed

I think that time is ripe for the rest of us to know what questions Jonathan Ofir would prefer to avoid. And if offir has a drop of integrity in his system he may want to answers these questions at least to himself. 

integrity-745x498.jpg

11 February 2016

Dear Ofir

I am in full support of your statement … however,,, some issues need elaboration andI would be very happy if you could address the following questions.

1. Your decision to present your moving appeal in English is a significant choice. Rather than talking to Israelis you talk about Israel. I went through a similar transition, rather than talking to Jews I made a decision to talk about Jews. 

What led to your decision?

2.  I am slightly confused by your attitude to Zionism:

a.      You seem to argue that Judaism and Zionism are distinct entities; is this really the case? Is there a clear dichotomy? Where does Judaism end and Zionism starts? After all, rabbinical Jews are atthe forefront of the racist crimes against Palestinians.

b.  I understand that some rabbinical communities are opposed to Israeli and Zionistcrimes, but they are certainly small in number and have limited influence, don’t you agree?

c.  Like you, I grew up in Israel. My experience was that Zionism was not a driving forcein our upbringing. It was an archaic idiom referring to some Diaspora figures that made it into streets names in Tel Aviv (Herzl, Pinsker, Zobotinsky etc.).  We joined the IDF because we were Jews not because we wereZionists. Do you really believe that Zionism,  that oldpromise to bring the Diaspora Jews to Zion, has once again become a driving force in Israel?

d. You say, “We were brainwashed to think that Zionism is our saviour.” Were we really?  (by the way, I am not saying you are wrong, I am curious to know why you say what you say, I accept that Israeli society may have changed)

e. You say our soldiers died “primarily for Zionism?”  Maybe you want to define more clearly what Zionism is and what Zionism has meant for you. 

 f.   As you know, Israel is not a country it is a state, Palestine is the country. Soldiers die for ‘Medinat Israel’, the State of Israel. Some rabbinical Jews prefer to talk about Eretz Yisrael -the country of Israel. For them Eretz Yisrael is a holy Jewish continuum and they are willing to fight and die for it. Whether we like it or not, they are Judaically driven rather than Zionistically motivated. Is there a clear dichotomy between ‘the religion’ and ‘the political’ there?     

3. Do you really believe that the Jews or the Israelis can “stop it now”?

Have Jews ever stopped themselves voluntarily?

5.  “A state is not people” you say.  “A state is a regime, a paradigm of governance.” 

 Is Germany, France or Turkey just a paradigm of governance? Do we deny the existence of the Germans, French and Turks? Assuming that Palestine becomes a state, will we then deny the existence of the Palestinian people? Accordingly, what kind of people are the Jews, especially given that most of them are not physically connected to a land (the land of Israel) ? 

6. You rightly say “I refuse to be a part of this “we” if that means some ethnic-religious-national mishmash superiority.” Yet how could the Jews celebrate their Jewish collectivism while avoiding exclusivity or choseness?

7. You seem to defend Judaism in light of the tie between Judaism and Zionism and I am slightly confused:  are you an observant Jew? If not, why do you feel the need to defend Judaism?

8. Obviously, I agree with you that Israel and Zionism are engaged in horrendous crimes. 

But as far as I can tell, Jewish Bolsheviks were engaged in crimes of an even greater scale.  According to Yuri Slezkin, Jews were “Stalin’s willing executioners”. Neocons, a Jewish American political school have inflicted greater disasters than Israel or Zionism.

 Is it possible that Zionism is just one symptom of a disastrous Jewish political continuum?  

Can you imagine a peace loving Jewish political existence? 

Can you point at such a body in Jewish history?

The Lubavitcher Rebbe’s dark side

April 15, 2017  /  Gilad Atzmon

GA: The following article was posted on The Time Of Israel’s website yesterday morning.  It was then removed by the Zionist outlet.  This is the first time I publish an article by Michael Lesher who is an orthodox Jew as well as a courageous whistleblower. In this article Lesher looks into  the militarism, racism and Zionification that have become dominant within contemporary Jewish orthodoxy.

Please read and spread widely. 

Michael Lesher will join our panel discussion at Theatre 80 NYC on 30 April https://theatre80.wordpress.com/the-post-political-condition-trump-brexit-the-middle-east-what-next/ 

By Michael Lesher

April 18 would have been the 115th birthday of Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the late Lubavitcher Rebbe. Schneerson, who took over a struggling Brooklyn-based Hasidic sect in 1951, was by his death in 1994 arguably “the most influential Jew since Maimonides,” and it is about that influence I wish to write — particularly because, in the 20-odd years since his death, recollections of the Rebbe’s personal charisma have largely eclipsed the record of his actual teaching.

I note at once that I have neither the expertise nor the desire to try to analyze the whole range of the Rebbe’s religious doctrine. Of his role as clergyman and community leader I have little to say, never having lived in a predominantly Lubavitch enclave. Moreover, since I had no contact with him, I am clearly unequipped to write about the Rebbe’s personal qualities; I am prepared to grant that these were impressive.

I am more concerned with the darker side of what the Rebbe taught.

For that darker side — the farrago of apocalyptic messianism and overt racism at the core of the Rebbe’s teaching — is likely to be his lasting contribution to the Jewish world, in which his prestige (thanks in no small part to popular hagiographies by Joseph Telushkin and Adin Steinsaltz) continues to rise even as serious discussion about his legacy has all but disappeared.

Worse, the Rebbe’s teaching invites serious practical consequences. Some of his most vehement sermons were devoted to the promotion of Mideast militarism. While Israel’s violence against its Palestinian Untermenschen intensified and its attacks on neighboring countries reached new heights of savagery, the Rebbe rationalized the occupation and egged on Israel’s military assault against Lebanon in 1982, as he would cheer on the American-led carnage in Iraq nine years later. Certainly a Muslim cleric who preached similar things would be anathematized throughout the Western world. Why, then, is the Rebbe given a pass for his warmongering in support of the oppression of Palestine — surely the ugliest blot on Jewish tradition in modern times?

The question cannot be shirked. The Rebbe didn’t just tolerate Israeli oppression. He encouraged it.

In Eyes Upon the Land, a book explicitly “based on the public statements and writings of the Lubavitcher Rebbe,” the reader is told that “every inch of territory in Israel,” including “the lands taken in the Six-Day War,” must be held by the use of Jewish military force, regardless of international law or the consequences for the non-Jewish population. Why? Because “the ordinary Arab in the street” seeks nothing less than “Arab dominion over the entire land of Palestine” and regards all Israelis with “deep-seated hatred.” The Rebbe never produced evidence that a nonexistent Palestinian army would somehow overwhelm Israel’s massive military forces — there being none — but the darker question is why the Rebbe’s insistence on Jewish dominion over the same land, and the deep-seated hatred of Palestinians and other Arabs he encouraged (during Israel’s slaughter of over 17,000 people in Lebanon in 1982, the Rebbe repeatedly criticized the Israelis for being too timid) didn’t justify the use of force by Arabs against their Jewish attackers. The only possible answer is the obvious one: Jews were different from non-Jews by definition. Jewish goals mattered to the Rebbe. Arab lives didn’t.

And Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza? During the First Intifada, the Rebbe preached emphatically against the slightest easing of the oppressive conditions that had spurred the desperate (and overwhelmingly nonviolent) popular revolt. “[C]oncessions convince the Arabs of Israeli weakness,” he claimed. “Even mere talk of possible concessions is harmful because it encourages terrorist activity.” Meir Kahane himself could not have said it more brutally.

The mainstream reader seldom hears about any of this: much of what passes for commentary on the Rebbe’s work is mere propaganda. In Toward a Meaningful Life, a book intended as a distillation of the Rebbe’s teachings, Simon Jacobson claims that “the Rebbe taught – and embodied – a distinctly universal message, calling upon all humankind to lead productive and virtuous lives, and calling for unity between all people.” In fact, Schneerson based his teaching on the traditional Hasidic text known as Tanya, a deeply racist work according to which only Jews are endowed with fully human souls. True, Schneerson was far from being the world’s only racist preacher; but it is hard to imagine panegyrics like Jacobson’s being circulated about, say, David Duke.

Nor have only the faithful been playing such games. In her review of two recent biographies of Schneerson for the Wall Street Journal, Dara Horn – after describing the efforts of the Rebbe’s emissaries to persuade Jewish men to don phylacteries and Jewish women to light Friday evening candles — insists that although “[i]t all seems suspiciously cultlike,” these “bearded enthusiasts aren’t out to convert anyone.” Really? It’s true that the only targets of Lubavitch’s missionary activities are Jews — but to deny that they’re “out to convert anyone” makes sense only if you accept the underlying premise that all Jews ought to be Orthodox Jews, if not Lubavitch Hasidim, a position that aligns Ms. Horn with a highly tendentious theological position she fails to acknowledge, let alone to justify.

Schneerson’s warmongering was partly a product of his doctrinal Jewish chauvinism — but it also drew on his fanatical insistence that the end of days was rapidly approaching. “We are now very near the approaching footsteps of Messiah, indeed, we are at the conclusion of this period,” he claimed as far back as 1951. Samuel Heilman and Menachem Friedman, in a relatively clear-headed review of the Rebbe’s career, call it “the story of how one man and some of his followers were swept away by his beliefs and expectations and led to assume that death could be denied and history manipulated.”

But Western media generally disdain religious fanatics who believe they can defy death and turn back the course of history. The Lubavitcher Rebbe alone is treated with kid gloves — even though violence was among the tools with which he sought to change reality. Witness the silence that followed this fulsome encomium from Rabbi Shmuley Boteach in the Observer:

“His [the Rebbe’s] moral authority and unparalleled humanity inspired in all who met him a desire to be better…. [S]eeing the dignity he accorded all who came to seek his blessing his admirers ceased judging people who were different.”

Those fine sentiments will be news to Palestinians, for whom the Rebbe expressed nothing but loathing and contempt. And the Rebbe’s “unparalleled humanity” had no problem with extolling Israeli massacres in Lebanon and the slaughter of Iraqis in 1991.

Yes, religious leaders can be complicated figures, and I am willing to grant that other aspects of the Rebbe’s teaching may be genuinely inspirational. But until we come to terms with the dark side of his career, we will not be able to shake off his complicity — and ours — in the long-running crimes of the Jewish state which, in the Rebbe’s perverse preaching, became acts of piety.

Passover Special – Yahweh and WMD

April 10, 2017  /  Gilad Atzmon

By Gilad Atzmon

Not many people know that the evil genius who introduced our universe to WMD (Weapons of Mass Destruction) was the Jewish German chemist Fritz Haber. For his work at the service of the German ministry of defense at the time of WWI, Haber is considered the ‘father of chemical warfare.” Haber pioneered the weaponizing of chlorine and other poisonous gases during World War I. Haber died in 1934 on his way to Palestine. He was making Aliya.

It should also be noted that it was Jewish ‘pacifist’ Albert Einstein who, together with Leo Szilard (another Jewish physicist), initiated the Manhattan project to produce the very first nuclear weapons. In 1939, it was Einstein who proposed to President Roosevelt that the United States begin its nuclear energy project. Needless to say, the Manhattan Project was over-populated with Jewish German scientists, working day and night to build a nuclear bomb, hoping to bring total destruction on Germany and its people (not just the regime).

Just a few years later in the 1950s, David Ben Gurion and Shimon Peres decided to introduce the Middle East to WMD, launching the Israeli nuclear project and also the Israeli chemical and biological warfare laboratory at the Israel Institute for Biological Research in Nes Ziona.

One may wonder, what is it that motivates Jewish secular scientific geniuses such as Haber, Einstein, Szilard, Oppenheimer and many others, not just to place their brilliance in the service of evil, but actually to initiate and invent the most destructive genocidal weapons in the history of mankind? And what was it that motivated Ben Gurion and Peres to introduce the entire Middle East to the threat of Judgment Day weapons and the notion of ‘Samson Option’?

You may ask yourself, is it something in the Jewish religion that invokes such genocidal, fatalist thinking? But the truth of the matter is that all the above scientists were secular Jews – far removed from Judaism or the Talmud – so it is unlikely that it was rabbinical Judaism that motivated Haber or Einstein. Similarly it wasn’t Judaism that motivated the secular Ben Gurion or Peres to launch the Israeli nuclear project.

Yahweh – the God of WMD

If you really want to understand the possible roots of Jewish cultural fascination with WMD, the place to go is probably the story of Passover. The Jewish Passover dinner (seder), celebrated by both secular and orthodox Jews, delves at length into the story of the Ten Plagues – ten calamities that, according to the Book of Exodus, Yahweh inflicted upon innocent Egyptians, just to persuade their king, Pharaoh, to let the Israelites go. Could it be that the ten plagues are simply old-time WMD warfare perpetrated by Yahweh himself?

First God made water into blood: Ex. 7:14–24

This is what the LORD says:

“By this you will know that I am the LORD: With the staff that is in my hand I will strike the water of the Nile, and it will be changed into blood. The fish in the Nile will die, and the river will stink and the Egyptians will not be able to drink its water.”

Then God inflicted on the poor innocent Egyptians a blitz of frogs: Ex. 8:1-8:5

This is what the great LORD says:

“Let my people go, so that they may worship me. If you refuse to let them go, I will plague your whole country with frogs. The Nile will teem with frogs. They will come up into your palace and your bedroom and onto your bed, into the houses of your officials and on your people, and into your ovens and kneading troughs. The frogs will go up on you and your people and all your officials.”

The third Divine biological attack was lice: Ex 8:16

“And the LORD said […] Stretch out thy rod, and smite the dust of the land, that it may become lice throughout all the land of Egypt”

Fourth was wild creatures to harm people and livestock.

The Fifth was livestock succumbing to disease Then the biblical WMD God attacked the poor Egyptians and their livestock with boils and ulcers, an early version of mustard gas, I believe.

When none of that did the trick, Egypt was subjected to God-inflicted climate change.

The seventh plague was a thunderstorm of hail.

Then came locusts and, when this didn’t help, God simply turned off the light for three days.

Finally, the Jewish God really lost his patience and decided to murder every firstborn son in the kingdom.

So Yahweh is not exactly a nice god. In fact, he is a genocidal being who would not have the slightest chance of surviving a visit to the Hague – Alan Dershowitz himself would not be able to get him off.

As we have said, the story of the Plagues of Egypt is celebrated by most Jews and not only the religious. Jews see Passover as a festival of liberation which even the most secular Jews are happy to celebrate. But in practice, this joyous festival celebrates a merciless warfare against an innocent civilian population.

The story of Passover leaves unanswered some important ethical and theological questions. If the almighty Jewish God is so omnipotent, why did he not just soften Pharaoh’s heart towards the Jews? Or why not just punish the king? Why did the Jewish God prefer to engage in such murderous adventures on innocent Egyptians?

The above depiction of the Old Testament God leaves us with some unsettling philosophical questions. If it was the ancient Israelites who invented this God, a God who chose them over all other peoples, why not make him a bit nicer? Why did he have to be so vengeful, so genocidal even?

Einstein, Oppenheimer, Fritz Haber, Ben Gurion and Shimon Peres were secular Jews. They didn’t follow the Talmud nor did they keep the Sabbath, yet, like the Old Testament God himself, they probably believed that mass destruction was simply the kosher way forward.

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