To A Christian Zionist

Update: I wrote this in 2006. If I wrote it today I would do it a little differently. Specifically, I would discuss the pernicious role of the Scofield Bible in perverting protestantism in America. I would discuss the meeting point of Christian Zionism, orientalism and racism in Western cultures. And I would point out that contemporary science has shown us that the direct descendants of the ancient Israelites are the Palestinians, not the Ashkenazi or Berber Jews who have colonised Palestine in recent years. Shlomo Sand’s excellent book The Invention of the Jewish People, reviewed here, summarises the science and undercuts the blood-and-soil aspects of Zionism which are so important to Christian Zionists and their ultimately anti-Semitic agenda.

I have recently been discussing Middle East issues with an American colleague who I would describe as a Christian Zionist. Although I like him personally I find some of his ideas (on Palestinian history, and Lebanon, and the wider Middle East) pretty offensive, and I have told him so. So as not to start an argument, I told him so in writing. He replied, saying that although he disapproves of collective punishment of the Palestinians he believes that the Bible clearly states that the Holy Land belongs to the Jews, and that the rebuilding of Israel prophesied in the Old Testament has happened since 1948. Hmm. My first response is anger. I understand Jews with memories of European anti-Semitism being attracted to Zionism, however wrong I think they are, but Americans? People who are not oppressed, who think Palestine is a Cecil B Demille set, who think real human beings (Arabs) are less important than their own narrow interpretations of scripture. Who think that ethnic cleansing, massacres, and apartheid are supported by God. It makes my blood boil. But I think responding intelligently to this kind of thing is important, because there are millions of Americans (with power) who see the Middle East through a Biblical prism. Anyway, here is my latest letter:

Dear

When I first read your letter I thought, this is Christian fundamentalism. There’s nothing to be done when your opponent has a fixed idea of a religious text. What’s the point? Letting it brew in my mind for a few hours, however, I find I have arrived at what may be a glimmer of light, a point on which we may be in some kind of partial agreement. (I’ll get to that at the end.) And that’s the benefit of communicating by letter: it allows for emotional reactions to subside into something more constructive.

I must say I take some exception to your comment about my limited Biblical knowledge. I have read the Bible and have read about the different interpretive traditions in Christianity. Of course I am aware of the scriptures which say God promised the land to the tribes (the Quran tells the same story), and I know about the prophets such as Isaiah and Ezekiel who foretold the doom and then re-establishment of Israel. However, to go from here to the political belief that we should support a 20th century ethnic cleansing and the establishment of a state in the 20th century definition of the term is an interpretation, and not ‘the Bible.’ I think it is important to recognise this, even if you believe the interpretation is the right one. It seems to me that the followers of all religions fall into trouble, even into immorality, when they can’t distinguish between the word of God and their own interpretations. I know that the pro-Zionist interpretation is prevalent in the United States, but I continue to assure you that it is not nearly so prevalent in Europe. Many European interpretations of Old Testament prophecy have been symbolic, understanding the reestablishment of Israel to mean the establishment of the Kingdom of God with the coming of Christ. Of course, the Palestinian and Syrian Christians I have spoken to about this are horrified and deeply confused by American Christian support for Zionism. Still more to the point if we are discussing Biblical texts, the preaching of Christ according to the New Testament does not seem in any way to support exclusive nationalism or violence. I can’t imagine the Christ of the Sermon on the Mount manning a checkpoint, firing artillery at residential areas or firing missiles from warplanes.

I feel a little dishonest discussing scripture with you because I do not believe the Bible is the literal word of God as you do, although I can accept that it may well be divinely inspired, in part at least. Modern textual analysis of Biblical texts as well as archeology have shown that not all the events in the Bible are literally true. I expect that for you faith will trump science in this case, and I respect that. I should stress here that, in my opinion, a lack of literal truth does not equate a lack of truth full stop. I believe that reading ancient religious texts (Islamic as well as Jewish) in search of literal historical truth misses the point somewhat, and says more about our contemporary preoccupations than it does about the texts themselves. The people (or God) composing the texts sought not to give a scientifically verifiable account of the world and history but to warn and to inspire, to teach lessons. Anyway, what I am saying here is that even if you are able to prove that the Old Testament calls specifically for the establishment of a Jewish ethno-state with all the 20th century machinery of state (and I don’t believe you can), I still would not support Zionism. Likewise, even if a Wahhabi is able to prove that the only possible interpretation of certain Quranic verses is that all societies at all times should stone adulterers to death (and I don’t believe he can), I still would not support stoning adulterers. I work on this principle: as soon as my interpretation of a text makes me do something immoral, that will unjustly and counter-productively hurt others, I know that I have gone wrong somewhere. Before God gave me religious texts to struggle with, he gave me reason, conscience and compassion. It is not possible that God could be less moral and compassionate than me.

To reemphasise (and I know I’m being much too longwinded about this): I think this is a universal problem. Muslims very often squash their own conscience in order to believe, say or do things which they have been brought up to believe are Islamic. Christians do unchristian things in the name of Christ, and Jews do unjewish things in the name of Judaism. It goes beyond religious communities. Socialists hurt society in the name of society. Democrats do undemocratic things in the name of democracy. Atheists hold unreasonable positions in the name of reason.

I also disagree with your statement that Biblical narratives of return to the Promised Land are the foundation of Israeli culture and beliefs. Of course, the Torah is one crucial element of Jewish and Israeli identity, along with the Talmud, modern nationalism, and secular European culture. The first Zionists were European secularists and, in many cases, atheists. Their motivations were nationalist and defensive, and not Biblical. Herzl was a secular Jew who was prepared to establish a state in Uganda or Argentina if Palestine was too politically difficult. Many Western European Jews before the 30s were socialists and internationalists. The European Jewish bourgeoisie produced Marx and Freud. As for Orthodox Jewry, they believed that the return to Israel would not happen until the coming of the Messiah. Some of them understood the return to be symbolic of a spiritual state, some understood it literally, but all thought it would not and should not happen until the Messiah came. They considered Zionism to be blasphemous. A minority of Orthodox Jews, including the Naturai Karta people, still hold to this position. It was the rise of Fascism which changed the minds of most Jews. Anti-semitism, not religion, made Zionism attractive to the Jews.

I’m glad that you don’t approve of collective punishment or of the Sabra and Chatila camp massacres in 1982. Sharon also holds responsibility for the blood of 29,500 Lebanese and Palestinians who were killed in the summer of 1982, 40% of them children. In 1953 Sharon helped direct the massacre of 69 civilians in the Palestinian village of Qibya. In 1956 he played a role in the massacre of 270 Egyptian prisoners of war. This mentions only Sharon, and only some of his crimes. Some of these crimes could have been avoided, but it was inevitable that crimes would have to be carried out on a large scale for a state with a Jewish majority to be established in Palestine.

Now here is the point on which, possibly, we will find some slight grounds for agreement. I said in one of our discussions that I don’t have a problem with diaspora Jews coming to live in Palestine per se. I have a problem when they seek to drive out and oppress the original inhabitants of the land (who have been there since Canaanite times). In fact, relations between the Palestinians and Jewish immigrants were generally good until the Palestinians realised that Zionist plans were being made to dispossess them. Interestingly, it was the more secular Jewish immigrants who often came in with racist attitudes to the Arabs, rather than the religious, who came with a spiritual love of the land which the Palestinians could understand. (Both Martin Buber and Ahad Ha-Aam have written about their more spiritual, less military and statist approaches to Zionism). Now, I understand that one reason why Christian Zionists support the establishment of the Jewish state is that they believe Jewish return is a prerequisite for the return of Christ. Christ the prophet of love and compassion. Well, about a third of the Jews have settled in Palestine (along with quite a few Russian Christians to make up numbers), but there is no sign of Christ yet, and no sign whatsoever of love and compassion guiding Israeli ideology and behaviour. If the Israelis could find a way of recognising that the birth of their state caused tremendous suffering for the Palestinians, and if they could find a ‘Christian’ way of living in peace with them, without (inevitably temporary) apartheid or military solutions, then the Israelis could indeed be a light unto the nations, and the rule of Christ on earth would be a lot closer.

22 thoughts on “To A Christian Zionist”

  1. This guy calls himself a Christian but uses the Old Testament to frame his argument. that same Testament that Jesus came to say was OLD.
    The historical basis the conflict resolution the land grabs the collective punishment are forbidden by Jesus, He was not for an eye but rather the other cheek.

    For him to lecture that others don’t know the scriptures is really quite funny seeing as he is not worshipping Christ’s Ideas or Christ in any way.

  2. People seem to forget what the Jewish elect-the Pharisees-thought of Christ.Much of the vitriol they directed against both Him and Mary has been airbrushed from the OT but you cannot avoid it if you visit the Talmud.

    As the dominant elite,the Pharisees handed down the Law and the Law was intensely xenophobic encouraging the belief that the goyim were untermenschen on a par with cattle.Hence any crime including anything from usury to ultimate dispossession against them was legitimate.

    The ultimate dispossession of the goyim was sanctioned by The Law because it explicitly advocated subversion of host societies in the diaspora until the opportune time when the Chosenites would wreak their genocidal revenge.

    What did Moses Mendelsohn mean when he described Judaism as not so much a religion as a “Law religionized”.He was drawing attention to the fact that underlying Judaism was a political project disguised as a religious one.As a German-Jewish Illuminati Freemason himself Mendolsohn proved extraordinarily prescient about exactly how this supremacist political project would be put into practice in future centuries.

    That political project has forwarded the supremacist agenda that has seen Jews who adhere to it come to dominate the centres of power and influence in the US,Europe and beyond.The Palestinians,in a horrifying irony it is they as pointed out above who are the Semite Chosen ones and not the Khazar usurpers,are the hosts who have been most recently condemned to live under the Chosenites’ heel.

    The conditioning and control in US and European societies has until recently been obscure and subtle but now is rather glaring.Those who have noticed and draw attention to it will increase in numbers and volume.Inevitably the left with its inheritance of Kabbalist and Theosophist-channeled Fabianism and Marxism along with generations of Frankfurt School political correctness will be the last to catch on!

    The rather quaint notion that Europe is far more advanced in its aversion for non-literal interpretations of Biblical prophecy than the US is another feature of the left’s cognitive dissonance and superciliousness when it comes to the Law,which is the real political dimension of Judaism that finds expression in Zionism.

    They simply do not understand the nature of the beast.The idea that the Pharisees died out long ago and took the Law to their graves and that the Christian and Jewish religious traditions are almost one and the same and make both natural allies against Islam is the message that is spewed forth daily by corporate media.With the conveyor belt of young dead daily returning from the front in the War on Terror this message no longer finds a captive audience.

    Among the most powerful elite families in Europe Israelism has always exercised a strong attachment.From the Jacobite monarchs of Scotland to the Saxe-Coburgs such elites have exalted earnestly in their self-identification as heirs of the House of David and the Twelve Tribes.

    European political players from Napoleon who was one of the first to understand the political appeal of the idea of of conquering Jerusalem in fulfillment of Biblical prophecy,though he later changed his mind,to others like Lloyd George,Balfour,and Churchill also understood it and effected it by opening up a new front during WW1.

    The Pharisees have their descendants among elites today who use religion as one of many controlling mechanisms.Organized religion has proved extraordinarily pliable to such elite manipulation.

    Support for the elite plan to effect World Government via the UN was garnered soon after the US entry into WW2 with Dulles,a Rockefeller agent,co-opting groups like the Federal Council of Churches into campaigning for its establishment as the world’s post-war organization for maintenance of the “peace”.

    Exactly what Dulles and the elites for whom he fronted meant by “peace” was only understood later when the Korean War began in 1949 and the US MID was geared up for the crusade against international communism.The Catholic Church was so hot for this crusade against the Soviets that they lobbied intensely for the war coming not long after in SE Asia.

    Ecumenicalism has been one of the main elite instruments in channeling religion in the political and international path most desired by the oligarchy.

    Perhaps qunfuz’s Christian Zionist pen pal needs reminding that Christ himself spoke of a tribe of people who called themselves “Jews” but who were really impostors.These people were,as we can see from the above history,someone else entirely.

    Arthur Koestler,and more recently Schlomo Sand,have drawn attention to their true identity.

    So before anyone starts up with the “anti-semitism” charge know it for the Levitical fallacy and elite control instrument these and many other researchers have proved it to be.

  3. On Dulles’s co-option US churches in the programme for post-war world government see Jackie Patru,an authentic US Christian anti-Zionist.

    http://sweetliberty.org/perspective/jewishpersecution1.html

    Babara Aho is equally astute on the globalist subversion of Church movements and organizations that has continued apace since Dulles.

    http://watch.pair.com/discernment.html

    In subsequent chapters Aho deals with the little understood phenomenon of British Israelism.

  4. You have no idea who the Pharisees really were. The Pharisees were deeply religious men. They were scholars and mystics. They were trying to turn the Jewish home into a Temple and every moment into an opportunity to sanctify daily life. The depiction of the Pharisees in the New Testament in completely wrong. Jesus was in the Pharisaic tradition himself. He never came to declare the Hebrew Bible “Old”. The Pharisees were in the process of interpreting the Bible, however.

    Genetics have proven that people with the last name of Cohen or similar names are really descendants of the priestly class. I don’t understand how you could say that today’s Jews are imposters. It has also shown the Jews are genetically closer to Palestinians than they are to Europeans. If Jews are imposters than so are Palestinians.

    If you want to convert Jews than you’re really no better than Christian Zionists.

  5. Susan – I don’t want to get into an argument with Freeborn again – (it keeps happening. I accuse him of believing in satanic lizards like David Icke; he accuses me of being a leftist gatekeeper, when I’m not really a leftist at all, let alone a gatekeeper) – but I must say I find his conspiratorial thinking to be not particularly helpful, and I understand that his dramatic use of terms such as ‘pharisees’ can come across as offensive. So there we are – without wanting to clash with Freeborn or to stop him expressing myself, I gently disassociate myself and this site from his ideas.

    Then I’m not sure if your comments are directed at my article or at him. I certainly have no wish to convert Jews, or to suggest that anyone is an ‘imposter’. It has been shown, however, that there is no such thing as a pure Jewish race with unalloyed ancestry in Palestine, and that the Palestinians (also not a pure race, but a mixture of blood and peoples, like all of us) are closer to the ancient Israelites than Ashkenazi, Berber or Yemeni Jews. And ultimately, of course, all this talk of blood is a fascist thing – it is a human imperative for all of us, whatever our ethnic, racial, family or religious background, or whatever we imagine it to be, to oppose states based on ethnicity and ethnic cleansing. I look forward to the day when the Jews, Muslims and Christians of Palestine are able to live together in equality.

  6. Susan

    So the Pharisees were “priests and mystics” were they? And there was me thinking they were the elite that rebelled against God and killed Jesus!

    Didn’t Jesus tell the Pharisees,”My Kingdom is not of this world.” Now that sounds pretty unequivocal to me.The differences between He and they were irreconcilable.

    Saying the Pharisees were “in the process of reinterpreting the Bible” is a bit like saying the Rothschilds,Rockefellers and Rhodes were “revising” rather than transforming the Christian Bible into an instrument of Zionism when they sponsored and financed innumerable translations from the early nineteenth century on.

    Barbara Aho and Janet Moser describe the sordid scam -sorry Pharisaic revision-here:

    http://watch.pair.com/revision.html

    qunfuz

    The piece above may be a bit long and it’s all “conspiracy theory” so we’ll understand if you and your gatekeeper friends can’t be arsed to read it!

  7. I did not say that Pharisees were priests. The priests were Sadducees. I said that the Pharisees believed that every home was a temple and every Jew a priest.

    You forget that I don’t believe in the New Testament. Jesus might have believed that he was the Messiah, but Jews, and Jesus was a Jew, never believed that the Messiah was God or the son of God.

    I was responding to Freeborn who called Jews today imposters. I don’t think that blood is the most important thing. If someone converts to Judaism they become a part of the Jewish people as well.

    I however do support a Jewish state. If there wasn’t a Jewish state, I would be there building it. I can live in America because a Jewish state exists. There needs to be a state where Jews can control there own destiny. This is not fascist or racist. It is necessary. Why is it that no one objects to a French state or to a Russian state? It is just a Jewish state that is objectionable.

  8. “I can live in America because a Jewish state exists. There needs to be a state where Jews can control there own destiny. This is not fascist or racist. It is necessary. Why is it that no one objects to a French state or to a Russian state? It is just a Jewish state that is objectionable.”

    Your reasoning is non-sensical. Freeborn can address the Pharisees point if he chooses, I address your claims cited in the quote above. You haven’t at all demonstrated why there “needs” to be a Jewish state, and certainly not one in Palestine (Uganda was one of many places proposed by the early zionist movement) where there was already an indigenous population, the majority of whom the non-indigenous Jews violently displaced and continue to wage low-intensity genocide against, to the shame of Jews everywhere.

    A Jewish state founded upon — imposed with — these continuing monstrous actions such as what we saw in Gaza allows you to live in America? How exactly?

    People rightly object to an ethno-religious supremacist state that practises apartheid, regularly commits atrocities and flouts international law. This is a state which you would help build? It is this likudist-zionist entity that is what is objectionable, and rightly so.

  9. It makes perfect sense to me. Most Palestinians would not have been displaced if they had accepted Israel’s existence and not attacked. They thought that Jews would be easy to beat, but they were wrong.

    You have also ignored that there are more Jewish refugees from Arab countries than Palestinian refugees from Israel. You ignore that the Palestinian refusal to accept Israel and the corruption and the tyranny of the Palestinian leadership has caused much of the suffering of the Palestinians.

    The most assimilated population of Jews were German Jews and look what happened to them. America is supposed to be the great exception, but I cannot depend on that.

    The Likud only recently came to power. For years Israel was a state with a socialist leadership. I oppose the settlements and other actions by the present government, but just because I disagree with the current government of Israel does not negate Israel’s right to exist. I didn’t agree with Bush Jr. for 8 years.

    You say there has been a “low-level genocide” against the Palestinians”, that is just not true. The Palestinian population has increased every year.

  10. Susan – you need to read The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine by Ilan Pappe. The ethnic cleansing was planned, organised and deliberate. Half of it was achieved before the war of 48 started. Of course it was necessary for there to be an exclusive Jewish state in the middle of someone else’s country. And this is the difference between Israel and France: France is a state for its citizens, not for one race, ethnic group or religion, and France exists on a land where the vast majority of people speak French. Israel, however, is a state for the Jews, not for its citizens, and it is built on a land which had a Jewish population of four per cent a hundred years ago. That the Jews are one race or one people is a myth that Zionism has learnt from fascism. And you can’t have self-determination in a land that does not belong to you. And what kind of rule is it for the world that a people who have been oppressed have the right to establish a state in other people’s land? What about the gypsies? Proportionately more gypsies were killed in the holocaust than jews, and the gypsies are still treated badly throughout Europe. So pwerhaps they should be given a state in France? and the French driven out of their country into camps in Germany and Spain? And Paris and Lyon and Versailles should be renamed and their French history erased? What about the black Americans? Or the South African boers? Both peoples who have suffered enormously, and who don’t have nation states of their own. Whose countries should they build their ethno-states in?

    The messsage of the Holocaust should not be ‘the Jews are victims who can do no wrong and have the right now to erase other ancient peoples if it pleases them’ but ‘ killing and oppressing any national/ ethnic/ religious group on the grounds of their ‘wrong’ nationality/ ethnicity/ religion is always wrong.’

    Zionists made deals with Hitler, and when Holocaust survivors first arrived in Israel they were treated appallingly.

    Finally, the greatest cause of anti-Semitism in the world today is… Israel.

  11. on the false comparisons of Palestinian refugees and Arab Jews entering Israel, see https://pulsemedia.org/2009/11/11/refugees-and-zionist-propaganda/

    You could also research Abbas Shiblak’s book The Lure of Zion.

    Syrian Jews left because of financial lures offered to them if they went to Israel. Most went for long enough to pick up the cash from Zionist organisations and then left for the States.

    If you’re saying, however, that Arab Jews should be free to return from occupied Palestine to their countries of origin – Yemen, Iraq, Morrocco, etc – just as the refugees should be able to return from the camps to live as equals with Jewsish immigrants in their own country, I agree wholeheartedly.

  12. That is just not true about Syrian Jews. They were forced out. That is the personal experience of the Syrian Jews I have met. They were forced out and not allowed to bring any of their possessions with them. The same with Jews from most other Arab countries. I don’t know of any Jews who want to go back to the Arab country they came from. Most Jews from Arab countries in Israel vote for Sephardi religious parties or they vote for the Likud. The last of the Yemeni Jews are now under attack and are being forced to leave. They were attacked even though they were not Zionist.

    Here is an article from the Washington Post:

    For Jews, roiling Yemen no longer place to call home
    OLD COMMUNITY UNDER SIEGE
    Few remain as Islamists intensify persecution

    No one has said that the Holocaust allows Jews to act anyway the please, but the Holocaust shows the need for a Jewish state and I make no apologies for that.

  13. I wonder, Susan, how well you know the Syrian Jews. My Syrian Sunni uncle married a Syrian Jew, and I’ve lived in Syria myself. There still are a few Jews there, and Syrian Jews from the states come to visit. Here’s a letter by writer Bridgid Keenan to the Guardian:

    • With reference to Professor Geoffrey Alderman’s letter (March 5), and before the myth becomes set in stone – the Jewish community was not “ethnically cleansed” from Syria. Many left in the early 90s because pressure was put on them to do so by Jewish groups in the US. Financial incentives were offered (one community leader told me that each family was promised $400-600 per month) and visas and green cards were facilitated by the US. Any average Syrian would have found these lures almost irresistible and most of the 5,000-strong Jewish community in Damascus and Aleppo, departed – to the dismay of many in the Syrian government and the diplomatic community.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2005/mar/09/syria.guardianletters
    the Syrians are generally able to distinguish betweens Jews, Judaism, and the weird secular fascist perversion of Jewish identity which has caused them so much harm. i.e. Zionism.
    You really should read more widely than the co-opted media. Rachel Shabi, by the way, has written an interesting book on Arab Jews in Israel.

  14. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/apr/15/israel-mizrahis-equality-conflict

    Here’s a good one.

    But if you want to make the point that there has been a generalm increase in anti-semitism amongst the arabs, that’s unfortunately true, but it by no means geberal, and comes, obviously, in response to the colonial invention of a sectarian Jewish state in their midst, which commits great atrocities – obscenely – in the name of the Jewish people.

  15. I was immediately reminded of this speech when Susan started on re-how “the Jews”-evidently she has no conception of the non-semitic roots of the Askenazi-were entitled to their own state.

    It’s Benjamin Freedman speaking at Willards Hotel in 1961.I love the way his argument by analogy builds to a climax.

    Freedman was a Lobby insider who spilled the beans on the Zionist plot to hijack the US and steal Palestine.The bit where he talks about the British having about as much right to promise Palestine to the Jews as America has promising Japan to Ireland cracks me up!

    The gut honesty of Freedman on the Balfour Declaration being about as phoney as a three dollar bill is another highlight.

    On the forging into shape of Woodrow Wilson by the Lobby,Freedman provides unforgettable living testimony.It so much resembles the modeling of Obama by the Chicago boys it’s almost surreal.

    Equally memorable is Freedman’s take on the Khazar phallic-worshiping progenitors of today’s Askenazim.And on the way the Zionists have used the idea of a shared Judeo-Christian heritage as means to get Palestine,Freedman takes some beating.Don’t forget this is a decade before Koestler’s 13th Tribe account of the Khazar kingdom!

    When you get to the bit about the 54m Chinese converts to Islam asking to take Arabia as their eternal homeland you just know this guy,Freedman has that sense of irony that today we have totally lost.

    So how about it you ticking Pulses write to Kennedy!

    http://snippits-and-slappits.blogspot.com/2009/12/jewish-defector-warns-america.html

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