By Dr. Irving Kett

Assimilation has dominated supposedly enlightened Jewish circles since the first wave of emancipation on the heels of the French Revolution in 1791. Many Jews looked upon this development, not as a belated act of justice toward a long persecuted nation, but rather as a munificence bestowed upon them by the ruling Christian nations in exchange for the destruction of their national identity. These Jews seized the opportunity to become members of modern society, despite the fierce hatred that they were aware still existed towards them. They willingly bartered away their heritage so that they might appear to be, at least in their own eyes, like the ruling majority in whose midst they resided. These non-Jewish Jews invariably threw themselves into the vortex of national life and frequently came to dominate the so-called "liberal" spectrum of political thought in which milieu they felt somewhat more acceptable.

Germans, Frenchmen, and others resented the "pollution" of what they deemed to be an insidious subversion of their race and culture by alien elements. Jews wishing to assimilate even became involved in an array of fiercely conflicting nationalities within the same territorial arena as was the case in pre-World War I Bohemia. The result was an intensified hatred of Jews on the part of both the Czechs and the Germans living in what is now the Czech Republic.

The distinguished Jewish scholar, Solomon Schechter, in 1901 wrote about "the ancient chosen people of G-d going about begging for a nationality and clamoring everywhere 'We are you!'" By the middle of the 19th Century the traditional religious anti-Semitism became the modern and more deadly anti-Semitism based not upon belief but upon race. This was the response of Western, Christian society to the assimilation and widespread conversion of Jews which was at the same time both encouraged and bitterly resented.

The disappointment at these developments in Western, Christian societies and the reaction that Jewish assimilation had provoked did not deter the assimilationists from their beliefs. It is interesting to note that in Eastern Europe, where the majority of Jews remained loyal to their traditions, anti-Semitism never quite developed the murderous philosophical dimensions of the more enlightened countries of Central and Western Europe that almost a hundred years before Hitler heard voices calling for the mass extermination of all Jews. Yet even after the Holocaust and the eventual Jewish disillusionment with the Bolshevik usurpation of power in Russia, the worldwide phenomenon of Jewish assimilation and devotion to what is described as liberalism proceeds at a pace never before witnessed in the 2000 years of dispersion.

One may ask what is wrong with becoming an assimilated, liberal Jew? Is there anything objectionable about him as a human being? For the answer I turned to the Nobel Laureate of Jewish literature, Isaac Bershevis Singer. In a book entitled, "Conversations with I. B. Singer on Jewish Life", by Richard Burgin that was published by Doubleday in 1985, I. B. Singer answered the question in the following manner:

"In one sense he is the salt of humanity with his tremendous energy and ambition. But being salt, he gives humanity high blood pressure. He's neither a real Jew or a real Gentile. He has no roots in any group. He digs all the time in other people's soil, but he never reaches any roots. He tries consciously and subconsciously to wipe out the individuality of nations and cultures."

The Ideology of the Self-Hating Jews

We shall now proceed to identify the particular characteristics of the type of Jew to whom we refer. He identifies unconditionally with the majority culture in which he resides, to the point of denying his own heritage and substitutes the current politically correct ideas of what constitutes liberal values for a new definition of Judaism. If we may coin a word that most accurately identifies the life philosophy of such an individual it is "Jewmanitarianism." This distinguishing quality has for the past two hundred years increasingly infected not only large numbers of Jews in the Diaspora countries but also in Israel. In the latter it has resulted in the loss of the will for national survival and is the major contributing factor that places Jewish existence in jeopardy today. How else can one explain a nation that was threatened with physical annihilation by an overwhelming military force, miraculously succeeds in defeating the aggressors, and then proceeds to sue for peace?

When the following concepts are encountered, one has every reason to suspect an assimilated, liberal, non-Jewish Jew:

1. Readiness to become involved in the aspirations of every racial, ethnic, religious, behavioral, or national group on the face of the Earth except for one, the Jews. Jewish concerns have always held the lowest possible priority for the assimilated, liberal Jew who in essence does not really believe that Jews as a people even have a right to exist. That there are Jews with a diametrically different viewpoint and especially ones who are threatened or persecuted is an embarrassment to them. They can sympathize with every group's aspirations but their own. Jews who are proud of their heritage, concerned with Israel, and possess a Zionist outlook are condemned as being narrow minded and ethnocentric. While possibly not outright deniers of the Holocaust, the self-hating Jewish leftists prefer to obliterate the memory of the six million Jews murdered by the Nazis. The tenets of their insidious religion precludes any sustained manifestation of sympathy for those who suffered in history's most horrendous paradigm of human cruelty simply because the victims happen to have been Jews. Their concerns and tears are reserved only for misfortunes of the world's Hottentots.

2. A book by Ben Stein entitled, "A View From Sunset Boulevard" explains the attitude of many, perhaps a large majority, of the Jews in the entertainment industry. He shows that overwhelmingly these non-Jewish Jews gravitate toward the identifiable political left. They are overwhelmingly against patriotism, hostile to the U.S. military establishment, anti-family, atheistic, anti-flag, and anti-police. In other words they are opposed to all elements that stand for stability in society. In their sick minds the United States along with Israel represent the greatest evils in the world. Of course within the human society, white males constitute the worst element. On the other hand all the nations and political forces that challenge them, even the cruelest and most oppressive, are good. The ones whom they fanatically support are the rootless, the homosexuals, "the people of color," the criminal elements, and the single persons who shun all responsibility to society. They are the strongest advocates of affirmative action, and of racial, ethnic and sexual orientation quotas, irrespective of an individual's capabilities or training. They are for the rights of groups as against the rights of individuals. Emphasis upon the latter concept has long been the historic position of true liberalism. These attitudes emanate from their total alienation and rejection of their own heritage and are contrary to constructive human impulses inherent in a democratic society. They unfortunately represent what the brutal, anti-Semitic Russian dictator, Josef Stalin, quite accurately denounced as "Jewish cosmopolitanism."

3. In our day Israel has become the touchstone of attitudes toward the Jewish People. Instead of changing the fate of the Jews, Zionism and Israel now embodies the fate of the Jews. By the same token anti-Zionism has become the main and most relevant form of anti-Semitism and concomitantly of Jewish self-hatred. A dangerous form of the latter disease is referred to as "post-Zionism." The exact date and origin of this term is possibly in doubt but its obvious focus of infection are the ivory towers of the Israeli academic world. From that source it has proceeded to infect the media and the consciousness of the so-called remaining intellectual elite. After over thirty years of such subversion it has come to pose a serious threat to the survival of Israel and, by extension, the continuity of the Jewish People. What these people want is the termination of Israel as a Jewish State and its replacement with a bi-national country, freed of all vestiges of Jewish and Zionist content, in which Jews may live as a minority. These post-Zionist non-Jewish Jews abhor the feeling of being Jewish. Yet they are successfully using their credentials as Jews, as Israelis, and supposedly as Zionists, to spread their venom in the Western World, and particularly in the upper echelons of United States universities.

The agenda for Israel of the post-Zionists duplicates the Arab agenda aimed at Israel's destruction. They are for repeal of the law of return; they favor changing the Zionist national anthem, Hatikvah, so as to include the Arabs; they want to modify Israel's flag so as to eliminate its identification with Zionism; they propose an Arab state in the historic homeland of the Jewish People; and they blatantly state that the Oslo Agreement of 1993 was not sufficiently generous to the Arabs.

Moshe Zimmerman who is a professor at the Hebrew University compared Jewish children in Hebron to "Hitler Jugend." The late Yeshayahu Leibowitz, also an acclaimed professor at the Hebrew University, had the temerity to compare the Israel Defense Forces to the Nazi SS. Another great "intellectual," the sculptor, Yigal Tumarkin, once blithely remarked to the effect that when he sees haredi families he can sympathize with what the Nazis did to the Jews during the Holocaust. Another Hebrew University professor, Ehud Sprinzak, has even had the audacity to find justification for the Arab terrorists who have massacred Jews. The concentration of other post-Zionists who are professors at the Hebrew University such as, Zeev Sternhell, Uri Avnery, Avishai Margalit, and Menachem Brinker causes one to wonder about that institution which at one time was the pride of the Zionist world and is probably still considered the most prestigious university in Israel.

Self-Inflicted Painless Holocaust of Diaspora Jewry

4. So much for the Jews of Israel. Let us turn our attention now to the assimilated, liberal Diaspora Jews who can readily be identified from the following list of political orientations:

a. With regards to Israel they identify completely with the post-Zionist ideology. These non-Jewish Jews in the United States even set up their own fund raising arms such as the New Israel Fund which in effect encourages anti-Israel Arab activities in Israel.

b. The South African Nobel laureate for literature, Nadine Gordimer, years ago joined the African National Congress in spite of its justification for violence, approval of communism, and deep seated enmity towards Israel. Most South African Jews were either Zionists or Communists. Ms. Gordimer fell comfortably into the latter category. Yet she enjoys high moral credibility among assimilated liberal Jews even in Israel because of her demonstrated "idealism."

c. An article entitled, "The Role of the Jews in the Russian Revolutionary Movement" by Leonard Schapiro appeared in the SLAVONIC and EAST EUROPEAN REVIEW IN 1961. In Russia in the 1870s a pre-Marxist revolutionary movement called the Narodniks arose which attracted many Jews who had severed their Jewish identity. Many of the Narodniks were violently anti-Semitic. This minor inconvenience, however, did not deter the Jews in that populist Russian movement because they would not risk alienating the anti-Semitic peasants. Jewish leaders, therefore, even participated in bloody pogroms out of concern to maintain their revolutionary solidarity with the peasants. Edmund Silberner wrote an article in 1949 for the publication HISTORICA JUDAICA, entitled, "Was Marx an Anti-Semite?" Silberner points out that Karl Marx had many racial phobias, especially against Slavs and Negroes but that none were as deeply rooted in his heart and mind as his aversion to Jews. It must be recalled that Marx's maternal and paternal grandfathers were both revered Orthodox rabbis. In a letter to his lifelong friend, Frederich Engels, Marx refers to a former Jewish admirer of his, Ferdinand Lassalle, as "the Jewish nigger." More than a century ago, the great political philosopher and first president of Czechoslovakia, Thomas G. Masaryk, drew attention to "the anti-Semitism of Marx." Yet Marx's contempt for Jews in no way deterred large numbers of self-hating Jews from being his slavish worshipers. For that matter the generally anti-Semitic tradition of modern socialism deterred few non-Jewish Jews from becoming ardent adherents.

d. Early Jewish reformers in Western and Central Europe blamed anti-Semitism on the dress and behavior of traditional Jews; Jewish Marxists blamed anti-Semitism on Jewish middlemen and capitalists; assimilationists of all stripes still blame anti-Semitism on Jewish ethnocentricity and nationalism (Zionism). In other words the liberal, assimilated followers of the Enlightenment continue to place the blame for the persecution of Jews not upon the haters but rather upon the hapless victims.

e. Who are some of the leading personalities and organizations of the liberal, assimilated Jews in the United States? Michael Lerner and Arthur Woodstock of the magazine TIKKUN; Arthur Waskow and the Reconstructionist Movement; Leonard Fein of MOMENT magazine; the Religious Action Center along with most of the rabbis of the Reform Movement. In whatever still remains of the radical left, be they Marxists, Maoists, Trotskyites, etc., liberal, assimilated Jews are very well represented. Since the demise of the Soviet Union, the non-Jewish Jews searched and found still another cause, environmentalism. Needless to state that the latter are over represented among those who constitute the most fanatic of the environmental whackos.

f. That most Jews in the United States are liberal and assimilated is shown by their voting pattern. About 80% of Jews vote consistently for Democratic candidates even when their Republican opponents have shown themselves to be friends of Israel and of Jews as was the case of President Ronald Reagan. Only Blacks have a comparable voting record despite the widespread anti-Semitism that is known to exist among them. Now the non-Jewish Jews may on occasion feel a slight twinge of discomfort about the avowed anti-Semitism of Black leaders such as Farrakhan, Reverend Sharpton, Black Studies professors such as Leonard Jeffries of the State University in New York City. But then the non-Jewish Jews always point out that Jews are racists anyway since many Jews still continue to oppose racial preferences, affirmative action, and busing to achieve school racial integration.

g. Then let us consider inter-faith relations. That is where assimilated, liberal Jews really shine. When inter-faith week is observed, they are in their glory even though they are supinely ignorant of their own religious faith, Judaism. During that one week they feel that they are really understood and accepted by the Gentile world and what could be more flattering than that to a non-Jewish Jew? One rarely finds traditional Jews involved in such charades. If people harbor hostility to Jews for 51 weeks of the years, they should at least have the decency to be anti-Semitic for the entire year.

h. In the United States there are no more consistent supporters of public education than assimilated, liberal Jews. Rarely, however, do they enroll their children in the public school system. One of the luminaries of the radical left in the United States for almost the past half century is another non-Jewish Jew, Grace Paley. The latter in the strongest terms castigates leftists who send their own children to trendy private schools instead of to public schools. They have consistently supported the busing of children to achieve "racial integration." How else are Black children going learn the fine bourgeois values of the non-Jewish Jews? The shame of it is that many of the parents of the poor white children who are suffering from these convoluted social engineering schemes are accused of being racists because they resent their children being manipulated like hapless pawns. Since non-Jewish Jews generally possess a high income level, they can enjoy the luxury of also being vociferously and hypocritically against school voucher proposals since that would benefit only the lower classes who must now of economic necessity send their children to the public school system.

The Jewish Death Wish of the Non-Jewish Jews

In April 1936 a serious Arab revolt broke out in Palestine during which hundreds of Jews were killed. It was suppressed during the time of the Peel Commission investigation in 1937-1938 but was not finally brought under control by the British Army until the outbreak of World War II in September 1939. Other outbreaks of widespread Arab violence against a Jewish presence in Palestine were a recurrent feature since the beginning of Zionist settlement. Large numbers of Jewish lives were lost in these attacks. In 1929, for example, 133 Jews were killed, including 67 in Hebron, where many young students were stabbed to death by local Arabs. Of these attacks, Christopher Sykes, a British journalist who at best was ambivalent about Zionism wrote "that it is difficult to believe that this sudden outbreak of savagery was unplanned." None, however, was as deadly and as widespread as the one instigated by the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini, in 1936.

It may be interesting to note how the seeds of trouble amongst the intellectual elite in Zion even preceded the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948. In an address delivered to a gathering on May Day 1936, the distinguished Labor Zionist leader, Berl Katznelson, in despair, posed the question, "Is there another people on the earth whose sons are so emotionally and mentally twisted that they consider everything their nation does despicable and hateful, while every murder, rape and robbery committed by their enemies fills their hearts with admiration and awe? As long as a Jewish child can come to the Land of Israel and here catch the virus of self-hatred, let not our conscience be still." Unfortunately, after 1967 what Berl Katznelson diagnosed as a sick aberration of his own son became the normal condition for a large segment of Israeli intellectuals. The self appointed defenders of Jewish morality, both in Israel and in the Diaspora, came to the conclusion that in being victorious in a defensive war, which if lost would have meant a second Jewish Holocaust within twenty five years, Israel had bartered its soul for a piece of land. The assimilated, liberal Jews in Israel and the world over, together with their Arab allies, seized upon this "progressive" viewpoint to undermine the existence of Israel and the Jewish People. In conclusion, I will relate two stories about the danger posed by non-Jewish Jews to the cause of Jewish survival and how it has been foreseen and feared even by knowledgeable Jewish atheists.

This is a story about a Hashomer Hatzair kibbutz on a Yom Kippur Day. The Hashomer Hatzair movement had as the backbone of its ideology a Zionist-Marxist orientation. As late as the 1950s, the movement still clung to its pro-Stalinist attitudes. Two elderly kibbutzniks were sitting on a bench. They observed two youngsters from the kibbutz passing by and eating ice cream. "What a shame," one of the elderly men observed, "look at them eating on Yom Kippur." "Well, what is wrong with that," answered his elderly friend, "don't we eat today?" "Of course we do," answered the other, "but at least we know why, because it is Yom Kippur. They are eating only because they are hungry."

Many years ago I read a story about Pinchas Sapir, Israel's first Finance Minister, and Josef Burg who was a veteran religious Zionist and a long-time member of the Knesset from the Mizrachi Party. Sapir reminded Burg how often the latter chided him about his indifference to Jewish tradition and concern for the Jewish future. Sapir said to Burg, "You complain that people like me of my generation are not sufficiently observant Jews. However, we all grew up in an intensely Jewish environment and we all possess a strong national identity. Wait until our children and grandchildren take over the reins of power in Israel. Then not only will you have something to really lament about but so will I."

There are those who insist upon taking an optimistic view of the Jewish future as did Charles E. Silverman, the author of "A Certain People", that was published in 1985. Before accepting Mr. Silverman's fatuous thesis, it would do well to remember that two thousand years ago the number of Jews in the world was estimated at ten million. We, the Jews of today, are part of that tiny remnant who have survived the Jewish ordeal. Had the remainder not disappeared from the Jewish scene, there would now be several hundred million Jews on the Earth. Instead our present small numbers and ever shrinking demography points up our vulnerability for survival.

We now live in the age that Pinchas Sapir foresaw and feared. Many secular Israeli non-Jewish Jews today are in reality Hebrew speaking Gentiles of Jewish lineage with no patriotism for their country, no feeling for the Land of Israel, and no concern for the Jewish People. Unfortunately, the future of Israel and of the Jewish People is now largely in the hands of these assimilated, liberal non-Jewish Jews. We are witnessing the fruits of their labor in the vanishing Jewish communities in the United States and elsewhere as well as a demoralized Jewish community in Israel whose defensive capabilities, at a time of national peril, will have long been eroded by years of subversion and appeasement.


Dr. Irving Kett is a Colonel, U.S. Army Retired and a professor of Civil Engineering at California State University.

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