Anti-Semitism. Why?

Discussion in 'History' started by Laser Eyes, Oct 29, 2004.

  1. CptBork Valued Senior Member

    But again, the wealth and power thing ties into the petty jealousy thing. You don't see white people getting upset that visible minorities are proportionately under-represented with the occasional token exception such as a black president deadlocked with white-dominated senates, congresses and states. There's an unfair perception that Jews enjoy disproportionate power in politics, finance and media, and a lot of the people fueling this perception and attempting to use it to justify racist positions are only doing so because they wish they had such privileges for themselves. I'm sure on a demographic basis, you can find ample statistical evidence that Jews hold a disproportionate share of wealth and power in Western societies, but I don't think you'll find any such disproportion when you evaluate their positions relative to their education levels.

    Hollywood only has so much power to make audiences like or dislike a Jewish actor or director. Politicians only have so much power to convince apathetic voters to elect them, and ironically most US Jews consistently vote for politicians who don't support the existing power structure. I've never seen anyone ever come up with a list of prominent Jews who got their jobs for being Jewish over clearly more qualified individuals, although I'm sure it happens every once in a while just as nepotism occurs in any other group.

    I've read claims that originally Judaism was highly evangelical, but it had little success in spreading because of the circumcision requirement applying to adult converts.

    That's a pretty highly charged accusation, there. Did you actually bother to ask any Israelis or Jews for their opinions on the issue, or are you just making things up? If Israel had such a lust for German blood, they wouldn't be sending diplomats to wine and dine with them every week, wouldn't have made it one of their most vital trading partners, wouldn't tolerate 100,000 citizens having dual German citizenship. You'd read something in the Israeli media about either nuking Germany or demanding a portion of its territory for a sovereign Jewish state, and I don't see nada.

    I think it seems far more plausible that Israel's animosity towards Palestinians is tied directly to the Palestinians' refusal to recognize Israel's basic right to exist as a sovereign nation and as the ancestral homeland of the Jewish people, and the resulting conflicts that have lasted over 100 years.

    Edit: To be fair, there's a rapidly growing religious nationalist sector in Israel which seems determined to clash with the Palestinians at all costs for messianic purposes, but the conflict was already raging long before they showed up.
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2015
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  3. nebel

    I read the book by Prager, "Why the Jew?", and, the basic premise is, because of adherence to the Mosaic law, refusal to assimilate and compromise.
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  5. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

    Well, that would at least give the lie to the pretension that it's all about Israel.
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  7. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    As another member remarked in an earlier post, the perception that Jews enjoy disproportionate power in finance (ignoring politics and media) is not unfair. The medieval Christians had mis-translated a line in the Bible that prohibits usury, which is what today we call "predatory lending." They thought it meant any lending of money for interest. Obviously wealthy people are not going to loan money to less wealthy people if the best they can hope is to get it back without interest, and on the other hand they might very easily lose it all.

    The Jews, who read the Torah in the original Hebrew, knew that it was, indeed, only criticizing usury, and that lending money for a fair interest rate is perfectly fine. (The Muslims also mis-translated this line, but they solved the problem more creatively. Their bankers don't charge interest; they simply levy a service charge, which by sheer coincidence happens to be equal to what the interest would be, if it could be charged.)

    Back to the Jews--they were the only people in Europe who were willing to lend money. So naturally after a few centuries of this nonsense, they had become Europe's bankers.
    Wealth, probably. But power? No way! They may own a few successful corporations, but their representation in the U.S. government and state and municipal governments is pretty much in proportion to their population.
    Bingo! The Jews have always stressed the importance of education. In earlier eras, this manifested primarily in the fact that almost all parents made sure their male children could at least read and write Hebrew, but also if possible the language of the host country. Education is a tremendous advantage.

    When a band of Jews migrated eastward in the middle of the last millennium, they eventually found themselves in China. The Chinese authorities took one look at them and said, "Well let's see. You bathe; you keep your homes clean; you teach your children to read; you pay your taxes; and you conduct business fairly--at least as fairly as we do. Okay then, welcome to China!" They were accepted so unremarkably that they simply assimilated into the Chinese population.
    Sorry if I didn't stress the fact that this is my own opinion a little more clearly.
    Three-quarters of a century after the end of WWII, you're not going to hear the same rhetoric that you would have back then. The treaties that ended the war specified that Germany would give tremendous assistance to the Jews in Palestine. My ex lived there in the late 1960s and was surprised to see that all the buses were Mercedes-Benz models. "Reparations," her friends told her.

    As for their current observations of Germany, let's see. The Nazi Party and the swastika are outlawed. There are strong laws against antisemitism, and the current wave of migration from Arab countries is thoroughly vetted about their feelings for the Jews before they're granted residence. Not to mention, Germany is still a major trading partner with Israel.

    It is possible for people to overcome the sins of their grandparents and great-grandparents. Apparently the Israelis feel that the new generation of Germans is in the process of doing this.
    There were not very many Jews in Palestine 100 years ago, so I doubt that there's very much old animosity to contend with. This started when the Westerners decided to give Palestine to the Jews, without bothering to find out if anybody was already living there.

    Of course the adjacent Arab nations attacked Israel, about five minutes after the nation was founded. But those countries were not run by Palestinians. I stand by my hypothesis that their current animosity toward the Palestinians is largely due to the fact that there aren't any other Muslim nations that they have the ability to attack and get away with it. Naturally this has made the Palestinians even angrier than they started, so Israel may always have at least one outlet for their anger.
    How sad. There is a huge contingent of American Jews, especially the younger generation, who disagree strongly with Israel's treatment of the Palestinians. Israel is no longer a major destination for Jewish Americans. In fact more Israelis are abandoning their country and emigrating to the USA, than there are American Jews moving to Israel.

    Net migration between the USA and Israel is now in the westerly direction!
  8. CptBork Valued Senior Member

    Firstly, let's dispell with the absurd myth that 99% of the land and water was in active use by the Palestinians when European Jews started emigrating there. Obviously the West was completely aware of who lived in Palestine at the time of the UN partition, and obviously it didn't convince them to deny Jews a right to live in their ancestral homeland when they had nowhere else to go, nor were their decisions the original cause of regional Muslim rage. There were plenty of accounts of persecuted Jewish immigrants in Palestine going back to the days of Ottoman rule, and that's not even including Jews born in Muslim countries over the last 1500 years who have more than enough accounts of their own. My hypothesis is that there would have been no need for a UN partition or the subsequent wars if Palestinians had allowed Jewish war refugees to purchase land and return peacefully to the homeland of their ancestors as equal citizens with full secular democratic rights. The Jews who were expelled in Roman times were never given a right of return at the time, nor was this right granted to their descendants after Arabs, Persians, Ottomans and others conquered, colonized, depopulated and repopulated the territory.

    I'm personally against Israeli settlement construction beyond the 1967 borders, but I don't think that excuses anyone's pandering to Muslim fundamentalist countries that execute people for drawing cartoons and blame everything but the weather on Jewish conspiracies. I think Palestinians, Arabs, Iranians and Muslims in general have given Israelis enough unwarranted grief to legitimize animosity towards them, even if it can be accused of over-reacting and provoking for its own part. When the Palestinians and all the countries surrounding Israel drop their blatant racism and/or the UN starts calling them out on it, then you can tell me the Israelis are getting back at Palestinians because "they're the only ones it can get away with raping", to paraphrase your charge. If Hamas didn't launch rockets from Palestinian kindergartens aimed at Israeli kindergartens, I don't think Israel would get away with bombing them either.

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