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Chosen People: Jews or Aryans?


Beneath the Holocaust Museum tragedy one can discover overlapping racist mythologies that have so far entirely escaped the commentators on the crime. Both the Aryan Nation and Zionist ideologies claim a God-given right for the Chosen People to commit genocide to redeem real estate inhabited by other people.

Israeli scholar Shlomo Zand's extensive historical and archaeological research demolishes the very foundation of the Zionist and Christian Zionist Chosen People mythology.

The deadly consequences of all divinely inspired racist mythologies—including Zionism, Christian Identity and Christian Zionism-- should have been clear from World War II. The fallacy of "race" itself should be the central lesson carried home by every visitor to Washington 's Holocaust Museum —not a justification for the State of Israel and its policies.

Irving Wesley Hall has taught English, political science, philosophy, economics and history at a number of California and New York colleges, most recently at the State University of New York at Morrisville.


Chosen People: Jews or Aryans? The Deadly Irony of the Holocaust Museum Shooting

By Irving Wesley Hall

22 June, 2009

On June 10 a white racist octogenarian shot and killed a black security guard in the prime of his life. James von Brunn, a self-declared anti-Semite, targeted the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. guarded by African - American Stephen Tyrone Johns . [1]

However, beneath this tragedy one can discover overlapping racist mythologies that have so far entirely escaped the commentators on the crime.

The killer was a follower of the late William Pierce, author of the novel, The Turner Diaries, in which a vanguard of "Aryan race warriors" slaughter Jews and African - America ns in order to cleanse the United States of "mud people" and overthrow "ZOG"--shorthand for the " Zionist Occupation Government". [2]

The Holocaust Museum is the national monument to the victims of the World War II extermination of European Jews. S ince the late fifties, [3] the Holocaust has been an indispensable element in the Zionist national narrative that justifies the establishment, legitimacy and policies of the State of Israel .

The museum killer and his mentor, William Pierce, were followers of the Christian Identity movement. Identity theology claims that Nordic Europeans are descendants of one of the "ten lost tribes of Israel ". The movement's founder, Edward Hine, published a treatise entitled The Ten Lost Tribes of Israel in England in 1871 that sold 250,000 copies.

At that time Victorian England was at the heady zenith of its colonial glory and many English Christians steeped in the lore of the Old Testament were eager to identify the lords of the British Empire with a lost tribe of Israel.

Hine's flattering theory of “chosen” white people struck a racist chord in Great Britain and had some influence on the Nazis' Aryan nation theory in Germany a half-century later. [4]

Of course many patriotic American s believe that God guided white Europeans to settle America as a special dispensation, an opinion that helps provide a divine justification for the country's present day racism and anti-immigrant prejudices.

Given the Identity movement's false premises, one can understand the logic behind its challenge to the authenticity of Jewish claims to being Jewish. In fact, American Christian Identity followers sometimes call themselves the “Aryan Nation” while also claiming to be the “real Jews”. [5] For them, ZOG's sinister plan to "mongrelize" white Christian America features the tactic of elevating African - America ns to positions of power for which they are not genetically qualified.

White racist ideology therefore combines elements of both superiority and persecution. V on Brunn may have taken special pleasure in killing a black security guard inside the quintessential symbol of the power of the "false Jews" shortly after the historical election of Barack Obama whose top financial advisors include many Jewish - Americans.

Of course, the Holocaust Museum is Exhibit A in the narrative of another self-described "people" united by historic persecution and a shared belief in racial superiority that comes from being chosen by God.

As Arno J. Mayer, whose family escaped the Nazis in 1940, wrote a week before the museum shooting:

Israel is in the grip of a kind of collective schizophrenia. Not only its governors but the majority of its Jewish population have delusions of both grandeur and persecution, making for a distortion of reality and inconsistent behavior. Israeli Jews see and represent themselves as a chosen people and part of a superior Western civilization.

They consider themselves more cerebral, reasonable, moral, and dynamic than Arabs and Muslims generally, and Palestinians in particular. At the same time they feel themselves to be the ultimate incarnation of the Jewish people's unique suffering through the ages, still subject to constant insecurity and defenselessness in the face of ever-threatening extreme and unmerited punishment.

Israel uses the Holocaust to conjure the specter of a timeless existential peril, in turn used to justify its warfare state and unbending diplomacy. [6]

Israel's aggressive policies have been condemned by most of the world, but they have the fervent support of another uniquely American and much more influential fundamentalist group--Christian Zionists. [7] The teenage competition between the Christian Zionist "nerds" and the Christian Identity "jocks" in my political satire, The Einstein Sisters Bag the Flying Monkeys, has particularly amused—and informed--its readers.

Fortunately, the novel's heroines, the great-great-granddaughters of Albert Einstein, persuade the other Christian students to reject both perversions of Scripture in favor of a "bi-national state" for Israel-Palestine. First the three sisters have to rescue Benyamin Netanyahu and his predecessor, Ariel Sharon, from a live crucifixion by the anti-Semitic football players. [8]

Satire can easily exploit the many odd parallels between the Christian Identity and Zionist narratives. The Ashkenazi elite of Israel today claim that they returned from Europe as descendants of the Old Testament or Torah Israelites after the Jewish people were expelled by the Romans from their historic homeland following a bloody but unsuccessful rebellion in the first century CE.

Hence, theoretically, God's bequest to Abraham in Genesis 15:18 grants both the Aryan white Europeans the right to cleanse North America of its inferior races­­ in order to establish a New Jerusalem and grants the Zionist white Europeans the right to conquer and colonize Palestinian land in the interest of an Arab-free Greater Israel.

In short, both ideologies claim a God-given right for the Chosen People to commit genocide to redeem sizeable chunks of real estate inhabited by other people. In the case of Native Americans and Palestinians the "others" have lived on their land at least since Biblical times. In fact some Palestinian Christians speak Aramaic, the only language spoken by Jesus of Nazareth .

As a "lone wolf" James von Brunn engaged in Godly ethnic cleansing retail. Unfortunately the leadership of Israel appears to be hell-bent on ethnic cleansing wholesale.

As the Israeli peace activist Uri Avnery, wrote last September:

Israeli Fascism is alive and kicking. It is growing in the flowerbed that produced the various religious-nationalist underground groups of the past: the group that tried to bomb the Muslim shrines on the Temple Mount, the underground that tried to assassinate the Palestinian mayors, the "Kach" gang, the perpetrator of the Hebron massacre Baruch Goldstein, the murderer of peace activist Emil Gruenzweig, the murderer of Yitzhak Rabin and all the underground groups that were uncovered at an early stage before their deeds could bring them to public notice.

These acts cannot simply be attributed to individuals or "rogue groups". There exists a definite fascist fringe at the margin of Israel 's political society. Its ideology is religious-nationalist, and its spiritual leaders are mostly "Rabbis", who formulate its world view and the practical application. These Jewish idolaters do not work in secret. On the contrary, they offer their wares on the open market. [9]

Since September Avnery's nightmare has come true. Benyamin Netanyahu was elected Israel's prime minister, and he appointed Avigdor Lieberman his foreign minister. Before that election, Avnery wrote of Lieberman:

. . .in any normal country [his party] would be called fascist. . . [it] is steadily rising in the polls. Why? Lieberman looks and sounds like an Israeli Mussolini, he is an unbridled Arab-hater, a man of the most brutal force. Compared to him, even Netanyahu looks like a softie. A large part of the young generation, nurtured on years of occupation, killing and destruction, after two atrocious wars, considers him a worthy leader. [10]

During Israel 's recent assault on Gaza , army rabbis encouraged the civilian slaughter in the name of Jehovah and Torah. Ironically, the day before the Holocaust Museum shooting Israel 's Ha'aretz newspaper reported American Zionist Chabad-Lubavitch Rabbi Manis Friedman's reply to a question posed to an "Ask the Rabbis" column. The American Forward newspaper described how Rabbi Friedman had "won the hearts of many unaffiliated Jews with his charismatic talks about love and God; it was he who helped lead Bob Dylan into a relationship with Chabad."

On June 9, 2009 the rabbi wrote:

The only way to fight a moral war is the Jewish way: Destroy their holy sites. Kill men, women and children (and cattle). . . [if Israel followed this wisdom, there would be] no civilian casualties, no children in the line of fire, no false sense of righteousness, in fact, no war. . . I don't believe in Western morality. . . Living by Torah values will make us a light unto the nations who suffer defeat because of a disastrous morality of human invention. [11]

Of course there are still many sane and compassionate Israelis such as Uri Avnery and Professor Shlomo Zand, an expert on European history at Tel Aviv University . His When and How the Jewish People Was Invented? celebrated 19 weeks on Israel 's bestseller list. An English translation is scheduled to be published by Verso Press in August. In the meantime, non-Hebrew readers are indebted to several thoughtful reviewers and the English translation of an interview with Zand in Ha'aretz .

Zand's extensive historical and archaeological research demolishes the very foundation of the Zionist and Christian Zionist Chosen People mythology. Remarkably not one of Zand's academic colleagues has seriously disputed his findings.

In the words of Jonathan Cook who writes from occupied Palestine :

"[Zand] argues that the Jews were never exiled from the Holy Land [and] that most of today's Jews have no historical connection to the land called Israel. . .the idea of a Jewish nation--whose need for a safe haven was originally used to justify the founding of the state of Israel--is a myth invented little more than a century ago." [10]

Cook quotes Zand:

I was not raised as a Zionist, but like all other Israelis I took it for granted that the Jews were a people living in Judea and that they were exiled by the Romans in 70 AD.

But once I started looking at the evidence, I discovered that the kingdoms of David and Solomon were legends.

Similarly with the exile. In fact, you can't explain Jewishness without exile. But when I started to look for history books describing the events of this exile, I couldn't find any. Not one.

That was because the Romans did not exile people. In fact, Jews in Palestine were overwhelmingly peasants and all the evidence suggests they stayed on their lands.

It is not taught in Israeli schools but most of the early Zionist leaders, including [ Israel 's first prime minister] David Ben Gurion, believed that the Palestinians were the descendants of the area's original Jews. They believed the Jews had later converted to Islam. [13]

Gilad Atzmon, in his review of Zand's book reports:

. . .Zand manages to prove beyond any reasonable doubt that the Jewish people never existed as a ‘nation-race', they never shared a common origin. Instead they are a colorful mix of groups that at various stages in history adopted the Jewish religion. . .

The people did not spread, but the Jewish religion spread. Judaism was a converting religion. Contrary to popular opinion, in early Judaism there was a great thirst to convert others.

As one would expect, Zand approves the largely accepted assumption that the Judaicised Khazars [14] constituted the main origins of the Jewish communities in Eastern Europe , which he calls the Yiddish Nation.

. . .Professor Zand leaves us with the inevitable conclusion. Contemporary Jews do not have a common origin and their Semitic origin is a myth. Jews have no origin in Palestine whatsoever and therefore, their act of so-called ‘return' to their ‘promised land' must be realized as an invasion executed by a tribal-ideological clan. [15]

Of course, Zand also destroys the foundations of both Christian Zionist and Christian Identity theology—indeed the basis of all Christian fundamentalism. According to Atzmon:

It is an established fact that not a single Jewish history text had been written between the 1st century and early 19th century.

If anything, archaeology refutes the historicity of the Biblical plot. Excavation revealed the embarrassing fact. The Bible is a collection of innovative fictitious literature.

The discomforting fact has been scientifically established. The Bible is a fictional tale, and not much there can ground any glorifying existence of Hebraic people in Palestine at any stage. [16]

So what is left of the Zionist and Christian Zionist narratives?

Atzmon hammers home the final irony. "However, far more interesting is the logical outcome: If the people of Israel were not expelled, then the real descendants of the inhabitants of the Kingdom of Judah must be the Palestinians." [17]

Excuse another shameless plug for the Einstein Sisters . My novel was written before the publication of Zand's book. However, using some of the same sources, this irony provides a final twist in the cascade of climaxes in the novel. Sixteen-year old Maxine Einstein also propounds Zand's solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

In the words of Jonathan Cook, according to Zand, "the only political solution to the country's conflict with the Palestinians is to abolish the Jewish state." [18]

According to Joshua Holland's January 2009 AlterNet review:

A logical conclusion of Zand's work exposing Israel's founding mythology may be the restoration of the idea of a one-state solution to a legitimate place in the debate over this contentious region. After all, while it muddies the waters in one sense--raising ancient, biblical questions about just who the "children of Israel " really are--in another sense, it hints at the commonalities that exist between Israeli Jews and Palestinian Arabs. Both groups lay claim to the same crust of earth, both have faced historic repression and displacement and both hold dear the idea that they should have a "right of return." [19]

In Shlomo Zand's own words:

What would constitute the basis for our existence [in Israel ] is not mythological historical right, but rather would be for us to start to establish an open society here of all Israeli citizens.

From the perspective of Zionism, this country does not belong to its citizens, but rather to the Jewish people. I recognize one definition of a nation: a group of people that wants to live in sovereignty over itself. But most of the Jews in the world have no desire to live in the State of Israel , even though nothing is preventing them from doing so. Therefore, they cannot be seen as a nation.

In the Israeli discourse about roots there is a degree of perversion. This is an ethnocentric, biological, genetic discourse. But Israel has no existence as a Jewish state: If Israel does not develop and become an open, multicultural society we will have a Kosovo in the Galilee . The consciousness concerning the right to this place must be more flexible and varied, and if I have contributed with my book to the likelihood that I and my children will be able to live with the others here in this country in a more egalitarian situation--I will have done my bit. [20]

Bravo Shlomo Zand! The deadly consequences of all divinely inspired racist mythologies—including Zionism, Christian Identity and Christian Zionism-- should have been clear from the catastrophe of World War II. The fallacy of "race" itself should be the central lesson carried home by every visitor to Washington 's Holocaust Museum —not a justification for the racist State of Israel and its policies. [21]

That should be the positive legacy of Stephen Tyrone Johns' tragic death.


Irving Wesley Hall has taught English, political science, philosophy, economics and history at a number of California and New York colleges, most recently at the State University of New York at Morrisville. Hall is the author of the political satire, The Einstein Sisters Bag the Flying the Flying Monkeys, and executive producer of the documentary, Onward, Christian Zionists. Visit for details. He can be reached at .



[1] " Holocaust Museum Shooting In Washington D.C. "

Nafeesa Syeed and David Espo

Associated Press

June 10, 2009

[2] "Interview with Leonard Zeskind"

Democracy Now!

June 16, 2009

[3] The Holocaust in American Life

Peter Novick

[4] "Edward Hine"


[5] " Christian Identity: Old Testament Mythology from England to America " Online Encyclopedia

[6] "The Future of Israel and the Decline of the American Empire:

The Wages of Hubris and Vengeance"

Arno J. Mayer


June 4, 2009

[7] Onward Christian Zionists

Rev. Donald Wagner

Alternate Focus

[8] The Einstein Sisters Bag the Flying Monkeys

Irving Wesley Hall

Not In Kansas Press 2008

[9] "Ze'ev Sternhell Warnings on the Growth of Israeli Fascism

It Can Happen Here!"

Uri Avnery


September 29, 2008

[10] "On The Wrong Side"

Uri Avnery


January 26, 2009

[11] "Chabad rabbi: Jews should kill Arab men, women and children during war"

Nathaniel Popper

The Forward

June 16, 2009

[12] "Israeli Bestseller Breaks National Taboo"

Jonathan Cook

October 10, 2008

Information Clearinghouse

[13 ] ibid.

[14] "Review of The Thirteenth Tribe by Arthur Koestler"

Grace Halsell

The Washington Report for Middle East Affairs


[15] "The Wandering Who?"

Gilad Atzmon

Palestine Think Tank

[16] ibid.

[17] ibid.

[18] Jonathan Cook op. cit.

[19] "Controversial Bestseller Shakes the Foundation of the Israeli State "

Joshua Holland


January 28, 2009 .

[20] "Shattering a 'National Mythology'"

Ofri Ilani

March 21, 2008

[21] Here are my three favorite books advocating a secular bi-national state:

Ali Abunimah, One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse .

Joel Kovel, Overcoming Zionism: Creating a Single Democratic State in Israel/Palestine.

Irving Wesley Hall, The Einstein Sisters Bag the Flying Monkeys.



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