Who Is a Jew?

The question of “who is a Jew?” has been debated in Israel since it attained statehood. In the Jewish state, the authorities, Rabbis, and the media would dig into one’s bloodline with no shame whatsoever. For the Israelis and orthodox Jews, Jewishness is obviously a blood-related concept. However, Jewishness and blood concerns are becoming a subject of a growing debate in the UK. In the last few days the Daily Telegraph and the Guardian are trying to decide whether Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is a ‘self hating Jew’ or just an ordinary anti-Semite. Like the Israeli Rabbis, they both dig into his bloodline.

Ahmadinejad is revealed to have a ‘Jewish past’ said the Daily Telegraph on Saturday. According to the paper, a photograph of the Iranian president holding up his identity card during elections in March 2008 “clearly” suggests that his family had Jewish roots. The Telegraph even found the ‘experts’ who suggested that “Mr Ahmadinejad’s track record for hate-filled attacks on Jews could be an overcompensation to hide his past.” Needless to say that Ahmadinejad has never come on record with a single anti-Jewish ‘hate- filled’ attack as the Telegraph suggests. He is indeed extremely critical of the Jewish state and its raison d’etre. He is also highly critical of the crude and manipulative mobilisation of the holocaust at the expense of the Palestinian people.

One may wonder how come a Western media outlet happens to selectively engage with issues to do with the racial or ethnic origin of the Iranian president. At the end of the day, digging into peoples ethnic past and family bloodline is not a common practice you expect from the Western press. It is something you tend to leave for racists, Nazis and Rabbis. For one reason or another, no one in the so called free press tried to dwell on the close ties between multi-billion swindler Bernie Maddof and his tribe. The Free Press saved itself also from dealing with Wolfowitz’s ethnicity, in spite of the fact that the Zionist war he brought on us has cost 1.5 million lives by now. If you wonder how it is that the Western free media is reverting to ‘pathology’ in order to deal with a Muslim president, the answer is simple not to say trivial:

The so called ‘liberal West’ is yet to find the answers to President Ahmadinejad within the realm of reason. It lacks the argumentative capacity to address Ahmadinejad. Instead, it insists to spin banal racially orientated ideas that cannot hold water, “By making anti-Israeli statements” says the Daily Telegraph, “he is trying to shed any suspicions about his Jewish connections.” The truth of the matter is clear. Ahmadinejad has already managed to re-direct a floodlight of reasoning and skepticism just to enlighten our darkest corner of hypocrisy. He somehow manages to remind us all what thinking is all about.

It is pretty much impossible to deny the fact that Ahmadinejad’s take on the holocaust and Israel is coherent, consistent and valid. He seems to have three main issues with the narrative:

   1. Around sixty Million died in WWII, the vast majority of them were innocent civilians. How is it, asks Ahmadinejad, that we insist to concentrate on the particularity of the suffering of one ‘very’ specific group of people, i.e., the Jews?

   2. The Iranian president rightly maintains that this historical chapter must be historically examined. This would mean as well that every event in the past should be subject to scrutiny, elaboration and revision. “If we allow ourselves to question God and the Prophets, we may as well allow ourselves to question the holocaust.”

   3. Regardless of the truthfulness of the holocaust, it is not a trivial fact that the suffering of the Jews in Europe had nothing to do with the Palestinian people. Hence, there is no reason for the Palestinians to pay for crimes committed by others. If some Western Leaders feel guilty for crimes committed against the Jews by their ancestors, which they seem to claim, they better allocate some land for the Jews within their territories rather than expect the Palestinians to keep upholding the Zionist murderous burden.

As much as it is obviously clear that the above points raised by Ahmadinejad are totally valid, it is also painfully transparent that the West lacks the means to address those issues. Instead we seem to revert to supremacy and pseudo-scientific discourse dwelling on blood, pathology and lame psychoanalysis.

As embarrassing as it may seem, in just three moves Ahmadinejad manages to expose the current deceptive Western mode of discussion. He, in fact identifies the holocaust as the core of our hypocritical stand, a tendency that has managed to shatter our ethical judgment. The holocaust was there to divert the attention from the colossal crimes committed by the allies: Hiroshima, Nagasaki and Dresden are just brief examples of institutionalised genocide at the hands of the English Speaking Empire. The holocaust has successfully matured into a new religion. Yet, it lacks theology. It doesn’t allow any form of criticism or reformism. It is in fact an anti-Western religion inspired by hate and vengeance. It is dark, it is blind and it lacks mercy and compassion. It is a faith that declares an assault on any form of doubt. It is a crude brutal belief system that stands in opposition to the notions of liberty and goodness. As if this is not enough, those who subscribe to this religion are complicit in an ongoing assault against grace and peace.

As things stand at the moment, The British media are yet to decide whether Ahmadinejad is a ‘Jew rebel’ or just a ‘Meshugena Goy’. The Guardian was very quick to publish its own take on the subject refuting the Telegraph’s account. However, one thing is clear, neither the Guardian nor the Telegraph or any other so called ‘free media’ outlets are free enough to address the questions raised by Ahmadinejad. 1. Why only the Jews? 2. Why do you all say NO to scrutinizing the past? 3. Why do the Palestinians have to pay the price? Instead of engaging in these crucial elementary questions. The British main papers succumb to racially orientated bloodline digging.

Rather than following the banal Zionist query ‘who is a Jew?’ I suggest that we take the discourse one step further and ask a very simple question: What Jewishness stands for?

Gilad Atzmon, now living in London, was born in Israel and served in the Israeli military. He is the author of The Wandering Who and Being in Time and is one of the most accomplished jazz saxophonists in Europe. He can be reached via his website. Read other articles by Gilad, or visit Gilad's website.

19 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. Suthiano said on October 6th, 2009 at 9:37am #

    Thank you Gilad for another courageous piece.

    “I suggest that we take the discourse one step further and ask a very simple question: What Jewishness stands for?”

    In Canada (largely the same as U.S., Australia UK) Jewishness stands for:
    2)The end of freedom of speech
    3)The death of democratic institutions

    1)Unfortunately that nasty bit of rhetoric that anti-zionism = anti-semitism is becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy (that is if anti-semitism means anti-jewishness). This is because all of the major Jewish organizations are interlinked (in Canada, CIJA, UIA, NJCL, CJC etc), and all are inextricably interconnected to “strengthening” Israel and the zionist movement. Thus we have seen a hijacking of “Jewishness” by those who actively support zionism.

    2)I think this article lays the groundwork for how freedom of speech is under attack. In Canada it can again be linked to these intertwined organizations, such as the Canadian Jewish Congress, which states its mission as promoting “intergroup (meaning Jewish groups) relations and combats antisemitism and racism.” These zionist organizations seek to shut down debate on matters such as the Holocaust by branding such speech as anti-semitic.

    3)The democratic institutions of Canada (US, UK, etc) are dying largely because of “Jewishness”. Again in Canada organized “Jewishness” cannot be separated from Zionism. To further their psychopathic vision, zionists target all of our democratic institutions: “As an oversight and coordinating body for strategic advocacy work on behalf of the Jewish community, CIJA works with other organizations and individual members of the community to ensure our voice is heard where it counts – in government, media and on campus.” The government, media and our universities are all losing their democratic ideals for the sake of Jewishness, that is, Zionism.

  2. bozhidar balkas vancouver said on October 6th, 2009 at 10:21am #

    Ahmadin is a shia. To multos or the mischlingen of at least hundred ethnicities, the only good shia is dead shia or a puppet like maliki. The “el” i left out because i don’t want people to think of him as a patrician.

    It is the time to eliminate sir, von, de, el before names of people.

    I got some good news for u. All ‘jews’ are self-hating. The bad news is, i, too, am selfhating.
    I became selfhating when i heard a priest say that i was no goodnik, sinful; prone to sexfantasies, drunkedness, immorality; enjoying a good or covetous look at at women’s nice legs or tits, etc .

    Then i read the bible. I was thinking, that maybe the priest was wrong and surely jesus must be right. So, i was looking forward to what he had to say ab. me and us.
    And he said the same thing. He said that no one is good. And he said but obliquely, that i deserve to be poor. Remember, he said, ye shall always have poor amongst u.
    he s’mhow forgot to say [and being a god and thus having too much on his mind], U’ll always have rich amongst u.
    But, at least, jesus said they, too, are no good.
    He never dared say [or he said but had been excised] that some of us will always be stupid and thus unfit to participate in governing one’s country.

    Because of what jesus, torah, and quran said all priests and their respective flocks always side with rich against us poor and stupid people.

  3. sid wright said on October 6th, 2009 at 10:57am #

    i found this interesting

    Israel ranked 27th out of 182 countries in the United Nation’s Human Development Index that was published in Bangkok on Monday.

    The index, which is compiled by the United Nations Development Program, provides a composite measure of three dimensions of human development: living a long and healthy life (measured by life expectancy), being educated (measured by adult literacy and gross enrolment in education) and having a decent standard of living (measured by purchasing power parity income).

    Topping the list is Norway, followed by Australia and Iceland and at the bottom are Sierra Leone, Afghanistan and Niger.

    According to the index, Israel is in tenth place in life expectancy at birth with the average life expectancy being 80.7; 34th place in adult literacy with a ratio of 97.1 percent; 33rd in gross enrolment in education (89.9 %) and 34th in GDP per capita with an average of $26,315 in purchasing power.

    All numbers are from 2007.

    Directly proceeding Israel, in 26th place is South Korea and in 28th is the Principality of Andorra.

    Israel’s neighbors are all ranked lower than Israel with Lebanon ranked 83, Syria 107, Jordan 96 and Egypt 123. The Palestinian Authority, which in the index is referred to as the Occupied Palestinian Territories, is ranked in 110th place, with a life expectancy of 73.3 and adult literacy ratio of 93.8.

    Other Middle Eastern countries rankings were: Saudi Arabia (59), Libya (55) and Iran (88). In 31sth place, Kuwait was the highest ranked Arab state. …

    According to the index, Saudi Arabia spends twice the percentage of total government expenditure on education than Israel. In Israel 13.7% of the budget goes to education while in Saudi Arabia the number is 27.6%. …

  4. bozhidar balkas vancouver said on October 6th, 2009 at 11:03am #

    suthiano, respectfully.
    Words like democracy, history, jewishness, and an endless number of like irritants appear as inventions; intent of them being to convince most of
    us that people rule, a history is not a mystory/mistory, or that there is a people like jews.

    Thus, no democracy is dying because no democracy ever existed. One cannot be an antisemite because euro-khazarians are not shemitic or semitic if one will.
    But there is, of course, a governance in each land, region, twn, city, province.
    With structure which can not only be seen but also felt on own skin.
    It can be seen how any governance functions and understood why it functions as it functions.
    The word “democracy” represents a fancy; thus cannot be understood but structure of a house, car, chair, governance can be seen.
    And we best learn anything by seeing and not by ‘explanations’ that schools, advertising, clergy, pols, ‘educators’ use.
    And in order that we do not understand anything and to prompt us to think: oh, well, we don’t understand anything because we are stupid and they are exaulted, educated, etc.

    That’s why a pol, ‘educator’, priest talks to us from a dais looking dwn on us and do not ever form a circle.
    Sitting and conferring in a circle wld indicate that all in a circle are equally welcome and a pol, priest will never allow that. tnx

  5. mary said on October 6th, 2009 at 11:21am #

    It Makes Me Feel Proud was a song written especially for Sid Wright to sing to himself.

    What an unpleasant posting to boast of Israel’s fortune obtained at the price of its captives’ misery and on the land stolen from them.

  6. b99 said on October 6th, 2009 at 11:45am #

    Israel is #1 in rankings in number of illegal occupations. It is also #1 in number of countries in which another government administers an Apartheid regime. The Occupied Palestinian Territories (notice the UN does not consider them disputed territories) is #1 in nations submitting to these rankings while under illegal occupation – as well as nations attempting to function under Apartheid rule.

    I think the Palestinians should be given major credit for their life expectancy considering how many of its youth succumb to the Israeli bullet. And kudos to the Palestinians for establishing a very high literacy rate while suffering constant power shutdowns.

  7. Mulga Mumblebrain said on October 6th, 2009 at 12:49pm #

    mary, if you broke the Israeli figures down, into Israeli Jewish population and Israeli Arab population, the picture might not be so rosy.

  8. russell olausen said on October 6th, 2009 at 2:18pm #

    I cynically scoff at numbers developed by nations that are not even as old as the life expectancy figures they post for believers in U.N. swindles. U.N. is prone to the description, ‘trust as far as can be thrown’.

  9. kalidas said on October 6th, 2009 at 9:38pm #

    First they steal the Palestinian’s identity (Semite), then they steal their land.
    Why, it’s nothing less than beyond the Pale. (and roads East)

  10. Mulga Mumblebrain said on October 7th, 2009 at 2:33am #

    Actually, the question of human progress and its ranking reminds me of a piece I saw at Asia Times recently. It was by the chap who calls himself Spengler on that site, one David Goldman. Now, I believe ‘Spengler’, judging from his output, is a pretty naked Western civilizational, and, probably, in my opinion at least, racial, supremacist. The piece I have in mind, argued that the solution to the Palestinian ‘problem’ (you know the problem that they refuse to disappear and let a superior, indeed THE superior, race ‘redeem’ [ie ethnically cleanse]their land)was to lower the Palestinian standard of living. You see as far as Goldman/Spengler is concerned, the Palestinians, compared to populations of similar ‘two-legged animals’ in Egypt, Jordan etc, are living too high on the hog. Get stuck into that lavish lifestyle that they enjoy in Gaza and Jenin, and they will no longer have any reason to stay on what, after all, as every good Zionazi knows, is land (from the Nile to the Euphrates) granted to the Jews alone, forever, by the Great Jew in the Sky. Having lived there for thousands of years is irrelevant, these being ‘drugged cockroaches’ after all.
    I read the piece a couple of times hoping to find some evidence that it was a parody, an echo of Swift’s ‘Modest Proposal..’, but, for the life of me, I couldn’t. I’m pretty sure Mr Goldman was ‘fair dinkum’ as the Chinese miners in Australia used to say. Need I say that the Palestinians are facing one of the most intractable and savage tyrannies any people has ever faced, and their stubborn courage is awe-inspiring.

  11. mary said on October 7th, 2009 at 5:39am #

    Was it is this Mulga? http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/KH18Ak01.html

    Palestine problem hopeless, but not serious
    By Spengler

    “The situation for the Palestinian people is intolerable,” declared United Sates President Barack Obama in his June 4 Cairo address. Really? Compared to what? Things are tough all over. The Palestinians are one of many groups displaced by the population exchanges that followed World War II, and the only ones whose great-grandchildren still have the legal status of refugees. Why are they still there? The simplest explanation is that they like it there, because they are much better off than people of similar capacities in other Arab countries.

    The standard tables of gross domestic product (GDP) per capital show the West Bank and Gaza at US$1,700, just below Egypt’s $1,900 and significantly below Syria’s $2,250 and Jordan’s $3,000/…

    How dare he say it!

    Who owns the Asia Times? Sondhi Limthongku, a lily white Chinese Thai version of Murdoch by the looks of it. There is a lengthy Wikipedia page on him. (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sondhi_Limthongkul)

  12. Shabnam said on October 7th, 2009 at 2:09pm #

    Thank you for this article Mr. Atzmon. As you have mentioned, Ahmadinejad never come on record with a single anti-Jewish ‘hate-filled’ attack the Telegraph suggests.
    He never attacks anyone for their racial differences. He is, however, critical of Zionism, colonialism and racism not based on racial or religious differences. The article in Telegraph published on October 3, 2009 was politically motivated.

    The Telegraph published this fabricated news to give ammunition to some of the protesters but Iranians did not buy it, and rejected as racist. On the other side, some of the Iranian opposition group abroad used it to create chaos and destabilization in and to attack Ahmadinezad popularity amongst Arab population in different Arab countries and the region.
    This suspicion receives some supports when one recognizes the role of ALIREZA NOURIZADEH – in the Telegraph, is reported as Ali Nourizadeh leavening ‘Reza’ behind to confuse the readers – who works for Western intelligent services including VOA, and close to Israel intelligent services. The Telegraph brings quote from Alireza Nourizadeh:
    {Ali Nourizadeh, of the Centre for Arab and Iranian Studies, said: “This aspect of Mr. Ahmadinejad’s background explains a lot about him.
    “By making anti-Israeli statements he is trying to shed any suspicions about his Jewish connections. He feels vulnerable in a radical Shia society.” }

    This fabricated information on Ahmadinejad was not published for the first time; rather “Jewish Journal.com” on OCTOBER 24, 2008 published this news for the first time, where suggesting Ahmadinejad and Sara Palin have Jewish roots. This information was not circulated widely among Iranians at the time; however, it was widely circulated after the election. This news was discarded by many Iranians as racist since they did not think that someone background should be held against the person especially Iran where has the largest Jewish community in the Middle East.

    A closer look shows that those Iranian responsible for spreading this fabricated information are mainly from the opposition groups abroad and have close ties with Israel and the western intelligent services including Nourizadeh.
    Mehdi Khazali, an internet blogger, who repeated this information and called for an investigation of Mr Ahmadinejad’s roots, was arrested this summer.

    Professor David Yeroshalmi, author of The Jews of Iran in the 19th century and an expert on Iranian Jewish communities, disputes the validity of this argument. “There is no such meaning for the word ‘sabour’ in any of the Persian Jewish dialects, nor does it mean Jewish prayer shawl in Persian. Also, the name Sabourjian is not a well-known Jewish name,” he stated in a recent interview. In fact, Iranian Jews use the Hebrew word “tzitzit” to describe the Jewish prayer shawl.

    Yeroshalmi, a scholar at Tel Aviv University’s Center for Iranian Studies, also went on to dispute the article’s findings that the “-jian” ending to the name specifically showed the family had been practising Jews. “This ending is in no way sufficient to judge whether someone has a Jewish background. Many Muslim surnames have the same ending,” he stated.
    A spokesman for the Israeli embassy in London said it would not be drawn on Mr. Ahmadinejad’s background. “It’s not something we’d talk about,” said Ron Gidor, a spokesman.
    Please notice that, the Israeli spoke person answers in such a way to creates DOUBTS about Ahmadinejad’s racial background.

    The Zionist lobby, including Daniel Pipes started their campaign before the Iranian election and spread a lie that “Israel prefers the re-election of Ahmadinejad” where bought by few people including fools from the ‘left.’ I think this was totally fabricated to encourage Iranian to vote for the opposition candidate. In fact Abbas Milani, an opposition close to monarchist and Israel lobby asking Iranians to vote for Mousavi from the CIA platform, ‘Voice of America’ VOA, to defeat Ahmadinejad. They wanted him to be defeated. They knew he is going to win, according to many independent polls including
    “New American Foundation” that predicted Ahmadinejad winner with 2 to 1 margin against Mousavi.
    That’s why I strongly believe this lie leaked by the ZIONISTS camp and its Jewish lobby, to create chaos, confusion and division amongst Iranians and to attack Ahmadinejad’s popularity amongst Arab population at large.


  13. Freddie Kevin said on October 7th, 2009 at 10:21pm #

    Mr Gilad Atzmon,

    Your question, “However, one thing is clear, neither the Guardian nor the Telegraph or any other so called ‘free media’ outlets are free enough to address the questions raised by Ahmadinejad. 1. Why only the Jews? 2. Why do you all say NO to scrutinizing the past? 3. Why do the Palestinians have to pay the price? Instead of engaging in these crucial elementary questions. The British main papers succumb to racially orientated bloodline digging.”

    Did you not know that responding to that question is a criminal offense in the EU as it touches on the sensitive issue of the holocaust. http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/850644.html

    And that is exactly why I am befuddled. The western democracies preaches freedom of speech but hypocritically outlaws any honest discussion and legitimate discourse that relates to questions of the holocaust. http://ffrreeddiiee.blogspot.com/2009/04/freedom-of-speech.html

    I am surprised that you have not received comments branding your good self of being an anti-semite.

    Thank you

  14. Dude said on October 8th, 2009 at 9:43am #

    Americans, Canadians, Australians, and Britons are the REAL Israelites. America is Zion, the Mountains of Israel in Ezekiel.

    The war of Armageddon will see America destroyed by Russia, China and the SCO on 10-10-09, the same day as the next false flag to invade Iran.

    You can know it is now by all the global chemtrails sprayed every day to hide the sign in the heavens, Planet X / Nibiru / Dark Star.

    News and sources here:

  15. lila said on October 8th, 2009 at 11:58am #

    Funny enough that the Israelis are more and more compared to the Nazis, which is not so wrong after all, because Na-Zi means basically “National Zionist” whereas the party of Hitler – the NSDAP – were “National Socialists”. Both partys existed at the beginning of the 20th century. I don’t know why and when the NAtional ZIonist was assigned to the NAtional SOcialists. But it is obvious that Nazi, the abbreviation, corresponds to the Zionists. A kind of vicious circle…

  16. Gilad said on October 8th, 2009 at 12:42pm #

    Lila, you nailed it!!!

  17. bozhidar balkas vancouver said on October 8th, 2009 at 1:08pm #

    I am s’mwhat disappointed that people call crimes such as theft of land with murder and expulsion of defenseless people “zionnism”.
    This label, to me, is not only an eupheme but a distort of reality as well.

    Even an european colonization of yet another land wld not be as illuminating as much as colonization via warfare and expulsion by an ideology that is much like a nazi or fascist ideology.

    Does it take much perspicacity to espy that in order to wage war against pal’ns and rob them, one had to think and talk about it.
    One had to ideate-feel-plan. In short, it’s mere thinking, but criminal so why not hide it by butifying it with a fanciful label such as zionism.

    Hey, kids, we’re not gonna call a spade “instrument”; and murder, war, expuslion an “ism”, are we?

    So, let’s call it “euro-khazarian aggression” and their leaders “war criminals”. And who must [so that others wld not do such crimes] face courts dead or alive.
    If we do not demand their prosecution we wld be guilty of abetting future criminals who cld or wld do to a people what khazars have been doing to pal’ns.

    Russia had behaved criminally towards chechens, however, they have not expelled them.
    I do not know enough of sudan to make a comment on similarities or differences of the conflict in darfur and israeli-palestinian conflict.
    Perhaps, e. timor may be compared with palestine.
    I can conclude only that what israel does may encourage others to behave that way.
    So dayan, sharon, rabin, gurion, weitzman, shamir, olmert, livni, barak, netanyahu, begin, meir, et al slhd be punished for their crimes against humanities.
    The only way to go. tnx

  18. Mulga Mumblebrain said on October 9th, 2009 at 2:19am #

    I read of yet another manifestation of Judaic power and control just today. The great ‘Holocaust’ memorial in Berlin is ‘for Jews only’. Silly me, I thought that the Gypsies, slavs, gays, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Soviet POWs, German socialists etc were all memorialised. Of course not! Only Jewish suffering counts! Besides which I recall some Zionazi eminence stating a few years ago that Hitler’s crime, in killing the Jews, was actually deicide, killing God, because the Jews are of the same substance as God, the Great Jew in the Sky, under whose omniscient eye we scuttle about. All the other lesser beings, with their lesser lives and lesser suffering, are getting their little, less grand, memorials, in car-parks or beneath underpasses, to remember their cosmically insignificant Holo..oops, I forgot. That term can only be applied to God’s Chosen Victims. I must have meant ‘misfortune’ or something like that.

  19. kalidas said on October 10th, 2009 at 7:50am #

    Ponerology is its altar.