Written by: by Jason Collett, 2003-11-09
What title-deeds do the Jews of today actually have to the land of 'Israel'? The idea that a people can possess some kind of ethnic ancestral right to a territory supposedly vacated by their forebears some millenia previously, implying a right in perpetuity, can have no legal basis. Or otherwise Americans of European ancestry, to name just one group of people, will have to pack their bags.
According to Dr Alfred Lilienthal in his book The Zionist Connection , "The Jewish population of Palestine [what is now Israel and the occupied territories, the West Bank and Gaza] at the time of the Balfour Declaration in 1917 was a mere 7 percent of the 700,000 inhabitants. The rest were Muslim and Christian Arabs. At the time of the (US-dominated UN) partition vote in 1947 there were only 650,000 Jews in Palestine while there were 1.3 million indigenous Palestinian Arabs, either Christian or Muslim. Under the partition plan, 56% of Palestine was given for a Zionist state to people who constituted 33% of the population and owned about 6% of the land. These UN figures have never been in dispute."
But there is a further issue, which also (yet again!) demonstrates the fundamentally questionable foundations of Zionism.
Jews are actually not even the modern descendents of the Israel of the Biblical Old Testament:
According to both the early-20th-century popular historian H.G.Wells and the Hungarian-Jewish intellectual and author Arthur Koestler, amongst numerous others, the people known today as Jews are primarily the descendents of a Turkish tribe known as the Khazars. The Khazars have no historical connection to Palestine. They converted to Judaism between 620 and 740AD, and have no genetic connection to biblical Israel, and hence to the narratives of the Bible and the "Holy Land". Koestler actually devoted an entire book called The Thirteenth Tribe (1976) to the fact that the Jews of eastern European origin, who are known as the Ashkenazi Jews and who make up about 95% of the Jewish population of today, are of Khazar origin. In other words - virtually all of the Jews of the modern world have no Hebrew ancestry, and no ancient connection with Palestine.
Does it matter? Does world peace matter? Do the human rights of a violently oppressed people matter? Does anything but sport and television sitcoms matter?
Arthur Koestler was by no means the first to draw attention to this particular issue. He quotes from 20th-century works on the subject by, amongst others, Professors A.N.Poliak of Tel Aviv University, D.M. Dunlop of Columbia University in New York, and J.B. Bury of Cambridge University. The courageous Jewish anti-Zionist commentator Dr Alfred Lilienthal raised the issue 50 years ago and has continued to do so for decades. In fact, the famous H.G.Wells in the early 1920s in his popular Outline of History described the Jews as "a Turkish people" and stated that "[to the] Jewish Khazars ... are to be ascribed the great settlements of Jews in Poland and Russia" (Chap. XXXII:8) and "The main part of Jewry never was in Judea, and never came out of Judea" (XXIX:1).
Lord Moyne, the British secretary of state in Cairo, declared on June 9, 1942, in the House of Lords that the Jews were not the descendants of the ancient Hebrews and that they had no "legitimate claim" on the Holy Land. A proponent of curtailing immigration into Palestine, he was accused of being "an implacable enemy of Hebrew independence." (Isaac Zaar, Rescue and Liberation: America's Part in the Birth of Israel, New York: Bloch, 1954, p. 115).
On November 6, 1944, Lord Moyne was assassinated in Cairo by two members of the Stern Gang led by Yitzak Shamir, latter to become premier of Israel. (This assassination was not unique in the history of Zionism. In September 1948 Count Folke Bernadotte, appointed by the UN as mediator between the Zionist settlers in Palestine and the native Palestinians, was murdered on orders from the same Yitzhak Shamir. Count Bernadotte was the head of the Swedish Red Cross and had risked his life to save thousands of Jews from German concentration camps. This set a precedent and encouragement for the Zionist use of assassination as a convenient political instrument, which the US and European governments have in effect condoned since then.)
Much old documentary evidence exists on the subject of the Khazars dating from the ninth and tenth centuries and earlier - from Arab, Byzantine, Hebrew, Russian and other sources. The conversion of the Khazars to Judaism is described in the so-called 'Khazar Correspondence' dating from the tenth century between Hasdai Ibn Shaprut, the Jewish chief minister of the Caliph of Cordoba in Spain, and Joseph, the king of the Khazars. In this the king traces the ancestry of his people not to Shem, father of the Semites, but to Japheth, Noah's third son. The Book of Genesis (10:2,3) itself also describes Ashkenaz as a descendent of Japheth, rather than Shem. In other words, the Jews are not a Semitic people, but their contempt for the Arab world and their bitter and violent war of dispossession against the Palestinian Arabs could be termed anti-Semitic.
The Khazars were formerly well known as a powerful people who, at their peak, 'controlled or exacted tribute from some 30 different nations and tribes' (Koestler), and were the supreme masters of the southern half of eastern Europe for more than a century. The Caspian Sea is still known today in Arabic as Bahr-ul-Khazar, 'the Khazar Sea'. These people controlled trade on the Dnieper, the Don and Volga Rivers between the Swedish Vikings, known as the Rus (the founders of Russia) in the north, and Byzantium-Constantinople (capital of the Eastern Roman Empire), Persia and Arabia in the south. The extent of trade along these rivers is indicated by the very large number of Arab coins, approximately 50,000 found, strangely enough, in Sweden and dating from Viking times.
After their conversion to 'Judaism', a religion based primarily on the teachings of the Pharisees and the Talmud, the Khazars adopted circumcision and became known as the 'Jewish Khazars' and then later simply as 'Jews'. Before the conversion, the 'Jewish' population of the entire region was sparse; afterwards, understandably, it suddenly became large. Writing in the 10th century, the Muslim chronicler Muqaddasi says 'In Khazaria, sheep, honey and Jews exist in large quantities' (Koestler p. 43).
After being defeated by the Rus around 965 AD, the power of the Khazars waned, and a gradual migration commenced westwards and northwestwards into Eastern Europe - the Ukraine, Hungary, Poland and Lithuania. Koestler shows that Yiddish (the former Jewish lingua franca of eastern Europe which is classed as a German dialect) developed not in Germany but in Poland as an amalgam of German, Hebrew and Slavonic (Russian and Polish) - the strong German basis of the language being the result of the German social and cultural prominence in the main cities of Poland in medieval times (Koestler Chapt. VII:3). Hebrew itself was only used for liturgical and rabbinic-scholastic purposes, not for everyday communication. No archaeological or other evidence exists of the use in biblical times of the six-pointed 'star of David', the emblem of the Ashkenazi Jews and the Israeli state, and the yarmulke, the skullcap worn by Jewish males, likewise has no biblical foundation. So neither the use of Hebrew nor the star of David nor the wearing of the yarmulke indicate any historical connection with the territory. Koestler says: "The historical evidence ... indicates that the bulk of Eastern Jewry - and hence of world Jewry - is of Khazar-Turkish, rather than Semitic, origin" (p. 175).
This of course poses various interesting questions on many issues, including that of the violent and manipulative Jewish takeover of Palestine during the last century. The reason these questions are not asked is that the story of the Khazar conversion is generally so little known. The academic, church and media establishments generally have shown no interest in correcting such an awkward and fundamental misperception, the source of so much suffering and spilt blood. They consider the issue to be unimportant or potentially dangerous in spite of the shocking human-rights outrages that the mainly Khazar-descended 'Israelis' and their Khazar-descended international Zionist supporters have perpetrated against the native people in Palestine over the last century.
Is there any doubt about the issue?
The British journalist Douglas Reed, former chief Central European correspondent of the Times, in 1950 wrote "The Eastern European Zionists are not Semites (though the Arabs are), have no semitic blood, and their remote forefathers never trod Palestinian earth."
Mr Benjamin Freedman, a Jewish industrialist born in New York, wrote in the Economic Council Letter published there of October 15 1947: "These Eastern European Jews have neither a racial nor a historic connection with Palestine. Their ancestors were not inhabitants of the Promised Land. They are the direct descendants of the people of the Khazar Kingdom. The Khazars were a non-semitic, Turko-Mongolian tribe."
Mr Freedman was challenged, unwisely, by a Zionist objector. He invited his challenger to go with him to the Jewish Room of the New York Public Library. There they could together examine the Jewish Encyclopaedia volume I pp. 1-12, and the published works of Graetz, Dubnow, Friedlander, Raisin and many other noted Jewish historians, which, as well as other non-Jewish authorities, "establish the fact beyond all possible doubt." (Somewhere South of Suez, 1950, pp. 349-350.)
If the Khazar account is untrue, we can be sure that a swift and comprehensive rebuttal would have followed Koestler's book and Lilienthal's long-standing allegations, let alone those of H.G.Wells. Can anyone name the book or books in which such a rebuttal appeared?
To confuse the Jews of today with the Hebrews of the Bible is like believing that the Cherokee 'Indians' not only follow the Hindu religion but will eventually return in triumph to the valley of the sacred Ganges.