Ever since John Mearsheimer and I began writing about the Israel lobby, some of our critics have leveled various personal charges against us. These attacks rarely addressed the substance of what we wrote — a tacit concession that both facts and logic were on our side — but instead accused us of being anti-Semites and conspiracy theorists. They used these false charges to try to discredit and/or marginalize us, and to distract people from the important issues of U.S. Middle East policy that we had raised. The latest example of this tactic is a recent blog post from Jeffrey Goldberg, where he accused my co-author of endorsing a book by an alleged Holocaust denier and Nazi sympathizer.
Walt’s logic goes like this: if you think his co-author is backing a Nazi sympathiser, you prove their “Israel lobby” theories to be right all along.
But that’s just silly. Atzmon is a Nazi, and Walt and Mearsheimer are now providing cover for him.
Here is Gilad Atzmon expressing a classically fascist/Nazi position on Jewish finance, in his new book The Wandering Who, in a chapter entitled “Credit Crunch or Zio-Punch?” [p.30]:
“You may wonder at this stage whether I regard the credit crunch as a Zionist plot or even a Jewish conspiracy. In fact the opposite is the case. It isn’t a plot and certainly not a conspiracy for it was all in the open.”
In this phrase, Atzmon reveals he thinks “Jewish” and “Zionist” are basically the same. He accuses Jews of openly causing the credit crunch. Remember, this is the book that Mearsheimer describes as “fascinating and provocative”.
In The Wandering Who, Atzmon interweaves his understanding of Jews today, with antisemitic caricatures, writing in The Wandering Who [p.51]:
“Fagin is the ultimate plunderer, a child exploiter and usurer. Shylock is the blood-thirsty merchant. With Fagin and Shylock in mind, the Israeli treatment of the Palestinians seems to be just a further event in an endless hellish continuum.”
We should look closely at what Atzmon is saying here. According to Atzmon, Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians is only the latest chapter in a “hellish continuum” of Jews plundering goods and exploiting children.
This means that however you consider Israeli actions, they are only the latest in a continuum of wicked actions carried out by world Jewry. In Atzmon’s “continuum” Israeli evil carries on from ancient Jewish evil, in which Shylock and Fagin are not vile racist caricatures at all, but accurately reflect Jews. That is why Atzmon can write in The Wandering Who [p.52]:
“Some Jews are rather unhappy with Charles Dickens’ Fagin and Shakespeare’s Shylock, who they regard as ‘anti-Semitic’.
It gets far worse. Here is Atzmon writing about the diary of Anne Frank, and why Jews identify with this book in The Wandering Who [p.52]:
“Anne Frank wasn’t exactly a literary genius. Her diary is not a valuable piece of literature. She wasn’t exceptionally clever either. She was in fact a very ordinary girl and this is exactly her power within the post WWII Western cultural discourse. She was just an innocent, average girl. In fact, the attempt to make Anne Frank into a cultural hero may be a genuine reflection of the Jewish ideological inclination towards sameness. Frank mirrors the desperate attempt to prove to the world that ‘we, the Jews’ are people like other people. Moreover, the success of Anne Frank’s Diary is there to suggest the West’s willingness to accept Jews as people amongst other people.”
Atzmon implies here, that Jews are not “people amongst other people”, so they must use apparently normal Jewish characters to try and gain sympathy and appear the same as everyone else. Atzmon can’t just say that Anne Frank’s Diary is a heart-breaking record of a tragic event, that should lead us to consider how we treat each other or perceive each other – or words to that effect. Rather, the diary itself is part of a Jewish plot – a deliberate, pre-meditated attempt for Jews to try and gain acceptance.
Walt and Mearsheimer protect Atzmon from accusations of antisemitism.
Atzmon continues this idea of Jews not being normal, or not fitting into society, when discussing David Rosenberg and Julia Bard, who are non-religious Jewish socialists. Atzmon writes in The Wandering Who [p. 72]:
“In spite of Julia and David’s dismissal of the Jewish faith, they still very much want to be part of the Jewish community. I wonder why? What is it that they need from the Jewish community? Why don’t they just ‘get on’ with their ‘socialist agenda’ and join the human family as ordinary people?
Atzmon is arguing that Jews are outside the human family.
In his rebuttal to Goldberg, the closest Mearsheimer comes to disagreeing with Atzmon is this:
Of course, I do not agree with everything that he says in the book — what blurber does? — but I found it thought provoking and likely to be of considerable interest to Jews and non-Jews, which is what I said in my brief comment.
If I’ve understood Mearsheimer correctly, he thinks that Jews are fascinated about how they might be totally un-normal people who cannot fit in with the wider world, and need to subdue the world by controlling it and causing Gentiles to kill in their name.
It seems unequivocally clear to me from those sentences that Atzmon firmly believes that the Holocaust occurred and was a horrific tragedy. I cannot find evidence in his book or in his other writings that indicate he “traffics in Holocaust denial.”
Does Atzmon think the Holocaust a “horrific tragedy?” These are Mearsheimer’s words, not Atzmon’s.
Atzmon writes, regarding the Holocaust in The Wandering Who [p.149]:
“The Holocaust religion is, obviously, Judeo-centric to the bone. It defines the Jewish raison d’etre. For Zionist Jews, it signifies a total fatigue of the Diaspora, and regards the goy as a potential irrational murderer. This new Jewish religion preaches revenge. It could well be the most sinister religion known to man, for in the name of Jewish suffering, it issues licences to kill, to flatten, to nuke, to annihilate, to loot, to ethnically cleanse. It has made vengeance into an acceptable Western value.”
Keep in mind, there have been religions practising human sacrifice, burning children in fire, and celebrating cannibalism. Atzmon thinks that Jews commemorating and discussing the suffering of their forefathers, is worse than all of these religions. “The Holocaust religion” is the worst religion known to man.
Mearsheimer has read the Wandering Who enough to find passages which he openly admires. He has, surely, not missed this passage. Ignorance is not the issue here. It gets worse still.
Atzmon compares Holocaust deniers, to religious dissidents being abused by corrupt priests [p.153]:
“To a certain extent, we are all subject to this religion; some of us are worshippers, others are just subject to its power. Those who attempt to revise Holocaust history are subject to abuse by the high priests of this religion. The Holocaust religion constitutes the Western ‘real’. We are neither allowed to touch it, nor are we permitted to look into it. Very much like the ancient Israelites who were to obey their God but never question Him, we are marching into the void.”
Atzmon is desperately seeking to garner sympathy for Holocaust deniers – people who are apparently, bravely opposing an “ideology” which leads to violence, murder and revenge.
Having identified the “Holocaust religion” as possibly “the most sinister religion known to man”, Atzmon then makes this claim in The Wandering Who[p.153]:
“From this point onward, I shall maintain that the Holocaust religion was well-established a long time before the Final Solution (1942), well before Kristallnacht (1938), the Nuremberg Laws (1936) and even before Hitler was born (1889). The Holocaust religion is probably as old as the Jews themselves.”
Atzmon repeats his point in The Wandering Who [p.162]:
“Rather than referring merely to the Shoah, i.e. the Nazi Judeocide, I believe the Holocaust is actually engraved in the Jewish culture, discourse and spirit. The Holocaust is the essence of the collective Jewish Pre-TSS, which predates the Shoah. To be a Jew is to see a threat in every Goy, to be on constant alert.”
So, Jews have always carried with them the most sinister religion, and have always harboured communal feelings of victimhood, which they like to use to murder and destroy people.
Atzmon is openly identifying Jews as naturally hostile to Gentiles.
Walt and Mearsheimer think it is a “false charge” to accuse Atzmon of being a Nazi sympathiser and a Holocaust denier.
They are half-right.
In identifying Jewish evil as continuous – from time immemorial until the present day – Atzmon takes the classic Nazi position on Jews. He also joins with neo-Nazis and modern day Nazis, as seeing Jewish understanding of Jewish suffering, as a great evil.
I think we can safely say that Atzmon is a Nazi sympathiser, as will become more apparent. However, I do want to note something else.
I have reflected on Atzmon’s ideology for the past few days. It has been a grim and depressing task. On reflection, I think that we must be careful, not to fall into the trap of dismissing Atzmon as a Holocaust denier.
Atzmon says he is “not a historian” on the Holocaust – not to actually doubt the historical facts of the Nazi genocide of Jews, but rather to call into question, the lessons we pick up about the Holocaust.
In The Wandering Who, Atzmon complains about the “moral” lessons Jews want us to learn from the Holocaust in The Wandering Who [p.174]:
“In the Jewish intellectual insular world, one first decides what the historic moral is, then one invents ‘a past’ to fit.”
“I think that 65 years after the liberation of Auschwitz, we must be entitled to start asking questions. We should ask for historical evidence and arguments rather than follow a religious narrative that is sustained by political pressure and laws. We should strip the Holocaust of its Judeo-centric exceptional status and treat it as an historial chapter that belongs to a certain time and place. The Holocaust, like every other historical narrative, must be analysed properly.
65 years after the liberation of Auschwitz we should be able to ask – why? Why were the Jews hated? Why did European people stand up against their neighbours? Why are the Jews hated in the Middle East, surely they had a chance to open a new page in their troubled history? If they genuinely planned to do so, as the early Zionist claimed, why did they fail? Why did America tighten its immigration laws amid the growing danger to European Jews? We should also ask what purpose Holocaust denial laws serve? What is the Holocaust religion there to conceal? As long as we fail to ask questions, we will be subjected to Zionist lobbies and their plots. We will continue killing in the name of Jewish suffering. We will maintain our complicity in Western imperialist crimes.
Here is Atzmon’s logic:
1. Jews with their ancient “Holocaust religion” bring misery to the world, and cause evil
2. It is rational to hate the Jew.
Atzmon writes in The Wandering Who [p.94]:
“Otto Weininger helped me grasp who I am, or rather who I may be, what I do, what I try to achieve and why my detractors invest so much effort trying to stop me. […] Even Hitler supposedly mentioned him, admitting: ‘There was one decent Jew, and he killed himself.’ This man was Otto Weininger […] Thanks to Weininger, I realised how wrong I was – I was not detached from the reality about which I wrote, and I never shall be. I am not looking at the Jews, or at Jewish identity, I am not looking at Israelis. I am actually looking in the mirror. With contempt, I am actually elaborating on the Jew in me.”
3. Historically, Jews have been hated for a reason. You can “stand up” against your Jewish neighbour for perfectly moral reasons.
4. As long as we fail to understand why people hate Jews, we will perpetuate Jewish evil.
5. Hitler recognised #1, #2, #3 and #4.
6. Hitler might have been correct all along.
This last point also features in Atzmon’s book. It is a far more explicitly Nazi argument, than to deny the Holocaust. Here is Atzmon demonstrating how we can understand the Holocaust, as a good policy pursued by someone with good ideas. Atzmon writes in The Wandering Who [p.179]:
“The present should be understood as a creative dynamic mode where past premeditates its future. But far more crucially, it is also where the imaginary future can re-write its past. I will try to elucidate this idea through a simple and hypothetical yet terrifying war scenario. We, for instance, can envisage a horrific situation in which an Israeli so-called ‘pre-emptive’ nuclear attack on Iran that escalates into a disastrous nuclear war, in which tens of millions of people perish. I guess that amongst the survivors of such a nightmare scenario, some may be bold enough to argue that ‘Hitler might have been right after all.”
Atzmon is trying to prove, that there are scenarios which may well prove, Hitler had the right idea all along.
In Atzmon’s scenario, Israel goes to war with Iran, and Iranian survivors of Israeli attacks conclude that “Hitler was right”. They are bold to do so. For Atzmon, this is just one scenario in which “the imaginary future can re-write its past” – and future events prove that Hitler was right all along.
Atzmon is arguing that eventually, the terrible behaviour of Jews will cause people to realise that “Hitler might have been right after all”. But for now, alas, the Holocaust religion prevents us in the present from realising this.
Whilst Atzmon pushes Nazi and neo-Nazi theories, Walt and Mearsheimer defend Atzmon in the public sphere, as merely “the kind of person who intensely dislikes nationalism of any sort”.
John Mearsheimer concludes on Stephen Walt’s blog:
In sum, Goldberg’s charge that Atzman is a Holocaust denier or an apologist for Hitler is baseless. Nor is Atzmon an anti-Semite. He has controversial views for sure and he sometimes employs overly provocative language. But there is no question in my mind that he has written a fascinating book that, as I said in my blurb, “should be widely read by Jews and non-Jews alike.” Regarding Goldberg’s insinuation that I have any sympathy for Holocaust denial and am an anti-Semite, it is just another attempt in his longstanding effort to smear Steve Walt and me.
Question: So basically we are almost, I tell people we are almost getting into a Weimar situation, do you see that happening?
GA: Absolu – it is very tragic to say, but I can see it. And the only thing that can save the Jews from themselves is if we the goyim, let’s say [Interviewer: ‘I heard you joined the goyim a few years ago, you are on the goyim team now’ – GA: ‘yes, yes’] if the goyim, the gentiles, are basically – can find within ourselves the powers to contain these sinister ideological collectives.
A “Weimar situation”, is presumably, a time when it is right once again to subdue the Jews, as happened following the breakdown of the Weimar Republic and the subsequent rise of Hitler.
Walt and Mearsheimer have presumably not come across this interview, but I doubt it will make them change their minds or see clearly on Atzmon. If they are not convinced by the evidence in the book of Atzmon’s Nazi-like antisemitism, then neither will they recognise the “Weimar situation” comment for what it is. They will argue instead, that this evidence somehow proves their theory about the Israel lobby even more.
In The Wandering Who, is there evidence that Atzmon is a fascist beyond “the Jews”?
p. 41 “The similarities between Zionist and feminist separatists are evident. Moreover, from time to time the two radical ideologies merge into a single voice.”
p.42 “the ideological similarities between Zionism and Feminist Separatism are clear.”
p.43 “The Holocaust was a ‘Zionist victory’, just as each single rape is interpreted by feminist separatist ideologists as a verification of their theories. As we have seen, marginal politics is maintained by hostility against oneself. In order to sustain marginal politics, the loathing directed against oneself becomes advantageous. Zionists rely upon burned synagogues and some lesbian separatist agitators rely upon rape victims. If there were no burned synagogues around, mossad would go as far as burning some itself. Within the separatist worldview, such behaviour is legitimate because the end is far more important than the means, and the campaign is more important than moral integrity.”
Jews pretending a racist burned down their synagogues; women pretending men raped them.
Of all the ridiculous points made by Walt and Mearsheimer in their latest Foreign Policy article, this sentence is the most ludicrous:
Goldberg’s indictment of Atzmon does not rely on anything that he wrote in The Wandering Who?
Goldberg’s piece quotes from Atzmon three times.
Two of the three quotes in Goldberg’s article about Atzmon are also found in The Wandering Who: