The non-Semitic origins of modern Jewry
The Zionist claim to the territory of Palestine bases itself on the premise that according to the Old Testament of the Bible, taken literally, God promised that land to the Jews after they escaped from slavery in Egypt. Not only did God promise the land to the Jews but he promised it to them for all eternity. And, it would seem, God promised the land to all the people who were ethnically Jewish regardless of whether or not they actually practised, or even believed in, the Jewish religion. How odd of God! On that basis, not only, according to the Zionists, were the German and east European Jews who took possession of Palestine under the aegis of British imperialism perfectly entitled to do so, and not only were people professing to be of Jewish ethnicity from all parts of the world entitled to settle in the territory, but they were also entitled to displace all the non-Jewish – i.e., the Arab – inhabitants of the area. It has to be said that if everybody in the world had a right to reclaim territory from which any of their ancestors, however remote, were expelled, this would lead to chaos. How many non-Indian American citizens would be prepared to return to Europe in order to leave the United States to its rightful owners, the Indians? How many Australians would be prepared to leave Australia to its original aboriginal inhabitants? We are sure that the majority of Americans and Australians, who would never dream of questioning Israel’s ‘right to exist’ at the expense of the Arabs it has displaced and is intent on further displacing as far as possible, would equally resist the right of the descendants of the original inhabitants of those countries to take back possession of the territories that were once the exclusive preserve of their ancestors. The whole idea is so absurd that nobody ever even raises it.
From this it follows that the idea of the territory of Palestine ‘belonging’ to the Jews is equally absurd. However, the interests of the Almighty (meaning not God but US imperialism), backed up by the highly-paid apologists and propagandists of imperialism in academia and the media, to say nothing of imperialism’s financial and military force, demand the silencing of all or anyone who pronounces that the emperor has no clothes.
Be that as it may, research into history, archaeology, linguistics and genetics is consistently discovering that there is virtually no connection between modern Jewry and the territory of Palestine. Some of this research has been brought together in a 2005 paper by Mohameden Ould Mey (the pseudonym of Mohamed Elmey Elyassini), associate professor of geography in the Department of Earth and Environmental Systems at Indiana State University, entitled ‘The non-Semitic origins of contemporary Jews’ which considerably informs this article.
Tenets of Zionism
As is well known, Zionist claim that ‘Eretz Israel’, the whole of the land bounded on the north by river Euphrates, the east by the river Jordan, the south by the river Nile and the west by the Mediterranean Sea, is the rightful inheritance of all Jews rests on the idea that all Jews are the descendants of the people who lived in the region in Biblical times. Supposedly these non-Arab people escaped from slavery in Egypt and captured the area from the Canaanites who were effectively exterminated to enable the Jews to set up their original Jewish state. Although in due course they were overwhelmed by the Babylonians and their powerful families were exiled to Babylon, they were allowed to return round about the year 583 BC and remained until expelled by the Romans in AD 73. Having ‘owned’ the land for so many years, the Jews should never have been driven out and have retained a right to return throughout history. Of course the Jewish claim to the area requires acceptance of the idea that during that period, or at least during a substantial part of it, Jews had a self-governing and sovereign state of their own in the area, whose capital was a thriving Jerusalem. It also requires acceptance that Jews are all or for the most part descended from the Jews who supposedly took it over as the Promised Land after escaping from slavery in Egypt and who, after a period exiled to Babylon, returned to dominate the area for centuries before being expelled by the Romans. Finally, it requires acceptance that Jews are a race separate and apart from any other people who at any time inhabited the area who naturally have no such ‘right of return’ – a race whose membership depends on being born of a Jewish mother and certainly not on one’s religious beliefs. Hence there is no bar on atheists being regarded by Zionists as Jews provided their mothers were racially Jewish too.
The whole of the Zionist narrative, however, is constantly being exposed as inconsistent with historical truth as a result of ongoing historical, archaeological, linguistic and genetic studies.
To start with there is no trace of Jews ever having been enslaved in Egypt – for all the strenuous efforts that have been made to find such. What is true is that for centuries all or some of the area of ‘Eretz Israel’ was under the control of the Egyptians, and in fact it may have been from the Egyptians that the first Jews took their religion (though not necessarily in Palestine – see below). In around 1350 BC the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten attempted to introduce monotheism into the Pharaonic religion that had already for centuries being placing its various gods in a hierarchy in relation to each other, the order of which kept changing for whatever reasons. Akhenaten concluded that it would be better just to have the one God – with a consequent reduction in the number and power of parasitic priests – rather than several. There were obviously important opponents to this idea among the traditionalists and immediately after Akhenaten died his successor, Tutankhamun, restored polytheism. Nevertheless it is reasonable to speculate that Akhenaten’s views had a measure of popular support; and that these views would have become current not only in Egypt itself but also in territories such as Palestine which it controlled and/or Arabia where it traded (in 2010 a Pharaonic inscription dating from the 12th century BC was unearthed near the ancient oasis city of Tayma, evidence of major trade networks crossing the region at the time). It seems quite possible that the Jewish religion evolved as a monotheistic variant of the Pharaonic religion that was popularised among certain of the Arab people, who may have been joined or even inspired by Egyptian followers of Akhenaten escaping the wrath of the traditionalists. Of course, all this is conjecture, but all the same it is more consistent with facts than Biblical mythology.
One hole in this conjecture is a fact that is even more damaging to the veracity of Zionist mythology, namely that neither historians nor archaeologists have been able to find any evidence to support the idea that there was any major Jewish presence in the area of Palestine at the time of their supposed return from Babylon. The area was visited by the Greek historian Herodotus around the middle of the 5th century BC and he “did not notice an Israelite or Jewish presence in that land, nor did the existence of a Jerusalem or Judah there attract his attention” (see Kamal Salibi, The historicity of Biblical Israel: Studies in 1 & 2 Samuel, NABU Publications, London, 1998). Kamal Salibi, seeing that the enthusiastic Biblical research archaeologists frantically trying to dig up evidence of the truth of the Bible were getting nowhere with establishing the Jewish presence on Palestinian soil, has speculated that the area originally inhabited by Jewish people was not Palestine at all but instead a slightly larger region in southern Arabia with a coast on the Red Sea rather than the Mediterranean, with Biblical references to the Jordan as a boundary not actually meaning the River Jordan – nowhere is any river mentioned – but instead the Sarawat mountains. It is also probable that the area inhabited at the time by Canaanites (Phoenicians) could just as easily have been south Arabia as Palestine. The Bible claims Jewish refugees from Egypt annihilated the Canaanites, but modern research suggests that in fact the Jews of the time were all Canaanites who adopted monotheism (see Israel Finkelstein – of Tel Aviv University – and Neil Asher Silberman – Ename Centre for Public Archaeology, Belgium, The Bible unearthed, The Free Press (Simon & Schuster), New York, 2002). At any rate, archaeologists have been unable to turn up any differences between the artefacts dating from before and after the Jews were supposed to have annihilated the Canaanites such as one would expect to find if one civilisation replaced another in any given area.
What is reasonably well established is that in the second century BC some Jews from Babylon did establish themselves on the territory of what is now called Eretz Israel, where they established the Hasmonean kingdom under Simon Maccabaeus. It has been argued that they did so as agents of Babylon put in place to control the local population for the benefit of their masters, and that therefore there was no way that this state was either Jewish or sovereign. Their language at this time switched from Hebrew to Aramaic, suggesting that they were nothing but a minority in an Aramaic speaking area. In any event this state lasted barely 80 years, until the Romans took over around 63 BC. And even if Palestine had been the real place of settlement of the first people who embraced the Jewish religion, it should be noted that they did not rule it since the area was subject to the Persians from 539 BC to 332 BC and the Greeks from 332 BC until 167 BC.
All in all, the historic case for claiming that Palestine is a Jewish homeland promised to the Jewish people by God himself is weak in the extreme!
Most modern Jews are not even Semites
According to Zionist legend, when the Romans destroyed the Jewish temple in Jerusalem in 70 AD, the Jewish population of Palestine emigrated en masse, and modern Jews are descended from these migrants. In actual fact, however, there is no evidence of any such mass migration. Certainly the Jewish population of the area waned in the following centuries, but this was much more likely to have been through conversion of Jews to Christianity or, later on, to Islam. The Jewish populations that popped up in other parts of the world are for the most part converts from among the local populations. Nowadays Zionism favours the view that Jews constitute a race into which you have to be born if you are to be a member, and therefore proselytization would be meaningless. However, this was not always so and indeed the most authoritative Jewish religious texts contain exhortations to the Jews to spread the word everywhere. That being the case, Jewish missionaries are known to have travelled to different parts of the world to carry what they believed to be the word of God.
“Noted historians and scholars tell us that missionary policies extended well past the biblical era. They trace strong missionary activity on the part of the Jewish community throughout the Second Temple period and beyond, and the Latin and Greek literature substantiate it. The Idumeans, Moabites and Itureans converted in 140 B.C.E. In the later Second Temple period, Josephus cites numerous Jewish converts in Antioch. According to twentieth-century Jewish historian, Salo Baron, as much as 10 percent of the population of ancient Rome was composed of Jews, many of whom were converts…
“Missionizing that began in Torah times did not end with the Christianization of the Roman Empire. Even in those pockets of paganism surrounded by Christian or Islamic nations, there was unencumbered proselytization. Among the pagan converts were the Khazars in the Caucuses (eighth century) and the Aksunite Kingdom of Ethiopia from whom emerged the Falashas.
“Proselytizing continued throughout the Crusades almost up to the Reformation…” (Susan Perlman on the ‘Jews for Jesus’ website https://jewsforjesus.org/issues-v09-n10/when-jews-were-proselytizers in an article entitled ‘When Jews were proselytizers’). This Jewish proselytization activity only seems to have come to an end as a result of the victimisation of Jews that arose later in medieval Christian states where the ruling classes depended on the universal observance of the official state religion as the means of maintaining their ideological control over the oppressed masses and would not brook the ideological competition offered by Judaism.
It is clear therefore that the number of Jews descended from the original Middle Eastern Jewish community dwindled, while those who were converts from completely separate communities increased exponentially. This is why today most Jews are not actually what is called ‘Semitic’.
Meaning of ‘Semitic’
The word ‘Semitic’ is in fact extremely ideologically charged. As a word it was invented by 18th century linguists to describe a group of related languages spoken mainly in the Middle and Near East. These languages included both Biblical Hebrew (which was by then a dead language), Arabic and Aramaic. The word was then extended, in the way words are, to cover a somewhat different concept, i.e., the people who spoke those languages as their mother tongue. Had language usage remained there, no harm would have been done. However, the word was then co-opted to give credence to the idea that those people to whom it applied formed a racially distinct group. This extension was all the easier because of the derivation of the word from the name of Shem, one of the three sons of Noah. Bearing in mind that according to the Bible no human beings were left in the world following the great flood other than Noah and his family, all people on earth had to be descended from Noah’s progeny. According to the Bible, those descended from Shem were the people of the Middle East, including the Jews; those descended from his brother Ham were the Africans; and those descended from his brother Japheth were the Persians and Europeans. This accounted for all the types of person that the pastoralists of the Arabian peninsula were likely to have come across at the time the Old Testament was written, and it amounts to an early categorisation of people into different ‘races’ according to certain physical genetic characteristics common to people from different geographical areas. Again this might not have been harmful of itself had the concept of ‘race’ not come to include characteristics of the culture of people from different geographical areas, and perceived differences of personal value in people of these different ‘races’, as if these were as genetically programmed as hair type, skin colour, etc.
Interestingly, by any definition Arabs must be included in the concept of Semitic peoples. That being the case, there are none so anti-Semitic as Israeli Jews a majority of whom are utterly convinced that Arabs are untermenschen, inferior beings.
Using language to trace the real origins of modern Jewry
It is not generally known that the Hebrew currently spoken in Israel and in use in current Jewish religious practices is not Semitic. Although it uses vocabulary and script similar to those used in Biblical Hebrew, it is structurally Slavic and not Semitic, having been derived from Yiddish and not from Biblical Hebrew. This has been demonstrated by Paul Wexler, Professor Emeritus of Linguistics at Tel Aviv University, whose work has been dismissed as ‘pseudo-scientific’ by the academic establishment but whose arguments are nevertheless strongly supported by available evidence. He argues that the proselytizers who took the Jewish religion to parts of the world where it was avidly adopted also brought the Semitic language and script of the Bible, all enthusiastically adopted by local populations, although it was a dead language that nobody knew how to speak any more. However, the way the Biblical language was written, using only consonants and no vowels, precluded these populations from knowing very much about the grammar or even the syntax of Biblical Hebrew since these were not fully apparent from the texts, so they merely transferred to their own languages the vocabulary of the Semitic language and not its structure. Indeed, Wexler’s linguistic studies convinced him that: “All contemporary forms of Judaism and Jewish culture are relatively recently ‘Judaized’” (P Wexler, The non-Jewish origin of Sephardic Jews’, State University of New York Press, Albany, 1996).
Wexler’s thesis is that modern Hebrew is derived from Yiddish, and that Yiddish is structurally a Slavic language that absorbed a German vocabulary after the break up of the Khazar state, which was at its height genuinely a Jewish state following mass conversion of Khazars to Judaism. It existed from c.650 to c.1048 and was situated between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea and to the north of them, within the territory of what is now Georgia and Armenia. During the period of the Khazar state, the Jewish community of Slav and Turkic converts gradually came to adopt the local Sorbic language, a language still spoken in parts of eastern Germany to this day. This was a language that was part of the Slavic group of languages. When Khazaria was overwhelmed and broken up by a Russo-Byzantine alliance, many of the Turkic Jewish converts inhabiting the area were forced to migrate to the Pale of Settlement situated in large part in territories inhabited by native speakers of German. At this point a German vocabulary became gradually incorporated into the Slavic structure of the language spoken by the Khazaris, which language became known as Yiddish, which, despite its German vocabulary, is nevertheless a Slavic and not an Indo-European language.
Modern Hebrew was artificially pieced together by scholars starting from a Yiddish base into which a Hebrew vocabulary was incorporated and is therefore itself a Slavic, not a Semitic, language.
As far as Wexler is concerned, the linguistic evidence is incontrovertible that those of modern Jewry who are their descended from the Jewish people who lived for centuries in eastern Europe are certainly not descended from the original Jewish inhabitants of the Middle East.
Genetic research also tends to support this thesis.
Nicholas Wade reported on 27 September 2003 in the New York Times that geneticists had found a large genetic similarity among Ashkenazi Jews with those of populations inhabiting Central Asia: “A team of geneticists studying the ancestry of Jewish communities has found an unusual genetic signature that occurs in more than half the Levites of Ashkenazi descent. The signature is thought to have originated in Central Asia, not the Near East, which is the ancestral home of Jews” (‘Geneticists report finding Central Asian link to Levites’).
Several geneticists have been forced to the same conclusion.
In addition, another research paper showed that the genes of Jews whose families have been based in the Middle East from time immemorial are genetically almost identical to those of Palestinian Arabs (not to those of Jewry elsewhere). Such was the furore caused by this finding that the paper was pulled out of publication in the leading journal Human Immunology because “it challenges the claim that Jews are a special chosen people and that Judaism can only be inherited” (R McKie, ‘Journal axes gene research on Jews and Palestinians’, The Observer, 25 November 2001).
Mohameden Ould Mey offers towards the end of his article several conclusions which LALKAR cannot but endorse, including these three main ones:
“First, the Jewish Semitic claim made by the Zionists in the name of contemporary Jews remains unsubstantiated according to scholarly findings in history, archaeology, linguistics and genetics. Second, the Semitic claim is essentially used to justify the dispossession, displacement, and impersonation of the Palestinians by Jewish settlers in one of the most complex forms of cultural identity theft. Third, even if contemporary Jews were actually ‘Semitic’, this will not justify their dispossession of the Palestinians who have nothing to do with any past, present, actual or alleged persecution of Jews in Europe or anywhere else in the world…”