Did he really do it? President Trump states the obvious and outs American Jews by calling them something they have always called themselves: members of a nation other than America.
Let me start this piece by saying that should anyone ask me what nationality I am, it will take me all of one nanosecond to answer “Jewish”. This is the nationality I was born with and the one with which I will die. It is written in my Soviet birth certificate, in my Israeli passport, and most importantly, in my DNA.
This type of answer was not at all uncommon for most of humanity’s existence on this planet. If, say 200 years ago, you had asked someone in France what was their nationality, they would say Bourgonian or Aquitainian, depending on which part of today’s France you found yourself.
In America, if you were talking to a white person, you would get an answer like South Carolinian or Georgian.
The supra-national states of France, Italy, Spain, Germany, etc., were just being born, but regional belonging, tribal belonging, and in most cases linguistic belonging was everything.
Then came the day of the a-national states like the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Soviet Union, and so forth. Finally, we have arrived in a world in which nationality is conflated with citizenship, in other words with a document, a piece of paper. Some people, like me, have more than one of those pieces of paper and we are often called “dual nationals”.
Except human nature doesn’t care about papers we may carry in our pockets, it only cares about what we carry in our hearts. And our hearts do not have room for dual anything.
I will get to the Jewish question in a moment, but first we need to lay the groundwork by asking the question: is there an American nation? My answer is that there used to be such a nation and it still exists within the borders of the polity known as the USA in a patchwork of places.
Before 1776, there were no Americans, only South Carolinians and Virginians, and so on. After that year, there was indeed born a nation called the American nation. The people who saw themselves as belonging to it were almost exclusively Christians of European descent.
Today, that nation numbers perhaps half of all people who have what is called American citizenship. It is the half that voted and will vote again for president Trump. I don’t know what nation the other half of American citizens belong to, if any, but it is not the American nation. I know this because these people profess their hatred for that nation as do their elected representatives.
Now back to Jews. Traditionally all Jews anywhere in the world when asked about their nationality, would immediately say “Jewish”. This started changing in the mid-1800’s, specifically in Germany, in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and in America. Also traditionally, Jews were persecuted, both in Christendom and in the lands of Islam, not because of their nationality, but because of their religion, a religion that gave birth to both Christianity and Islam, but refused to submit to their superiority. The existence of people who professed the Jewish faith was an affront to the exclusionary and missionary religions of Christianity and Islam, for which Jews had paid a very high price.
One could perhaps imagine that as the importance of organized religion, both Christianity and Judaism, receded in Western Europe, so would violence against Jews. In that case, one would be very much mistaken. The opening of the ghettos as part of the pan-European emancipation process brought Jews into much closer contact with native populations and it turns out that the exilic Jews and the indigenous Europeans didn’t like each other after all and not because they had different faiths, but because they belonged to different nations.
Today, we are entering into the third phase of anti-Semitism, anti-Semitism 3.0, so to speak. If anti-Semitism 1.0 was “we hate you because you refuse to admit that the guy we believe to be the Messiah is indeed the Messiah” and anti-Semitism 2.0 was “we hate you because you are foreigners in our lands and you are lording it over us because you are smarter than us”, anti-Semitism 3.0 is “we hate you because you are foreigners in our land and because you are smarter than us and because you also have a national homeland while at the same time telling us that national homelands shouldn’t exist”.
Each phase of anti-Semitism had its own “do this or else” clause. In the first phase, it was convert or die, convert or pay a tax, convert or forget about that government job, etc. In the second phase, it was simply die as quickly as you can without making too much of a fuss about it. In the third and current phase, it’s renounce the idea that you (Jews) are a nation and that this (nonexistent) nation has a historical homeland and affirm that the state of Israel, which purports to be the historical homeland of the (non-existent) Jewish nation has no right to exist. And if you don’t, we will harass you in every which way and try to make your life a living hell in universities and corporations, and anywhere else that matters.
Enter president Trump, saying “knock it off, crazy bigots, of course Jews are a nation!” To which most American “Jews”, those who are smarter than anyone else and have 30 times the education, the money, and the jobs that they should have had had they been like everyone else answer: “You are a rabid anti-Semite! Shut the ,,, up!”
There is a reason. Nobody would dispute that Italians are a nation. And nobody would dispute that there are many Americans of Italian descent. Yet it does not appear strange that Americans of Italian descent, be they Giuliani or Pelosi do not think of themselves as belonging to the Italian nation. Not so with the Jews. Those same Jews that are yelling at president Trump full-well know that there is a Jewish nation and that it, rather than any other nation, including the American one, is the nation that they belong to. They know it even if they do not admit it to themselves. They know it in their bones, their hearts, every cell of their bodies. Trump simply caught them, that’s all. He outed them against their will.
Was it a smart thing to do?
Politically, yes. First of all, if implemented, president Trump’s definition of Jews in America as a minority on national rather than religious grounds will indeed go a long way towards stopping the ridiculous persecution many Jewish students are exposed to in American universities. But there is more. Trump has called the American Jews’ bluff and they now must either accept that they are a part of the Jewish nation openly and thus are nationalists who should support the nationalist rather than the globalist agenda not only when it comes to Israel as they now hypocritically do, but across the board, or they can argue that the Jews are not a nation and thus Israel has no right to exist, an argument that is political anathema still for most American Jews.
The truth of the matter is not very complicated: American Jews, like any diaspora Jews, but unlike American Italians are living in exile, meaning away from their national homeland. Unlike their recent ancestors who did so by necessity because the Jewish homeland was, at their time, occupied by foreigners, today’s American Jews do so because they choose to, because life in America is familiar and comfortable and that is just fine.
What is not fine, however, is when American Jews, who by virtue of their far above average average intellect, drive, and education occupy highly disproportionate position of wealth and power in America, use that power to deny America and Americans what they so willingly allow for Israel: existence as a nation in its own right, a nation-state, which acts in its interests and its interests only when it comes to everything from immigration to trade.
And now a final word on assimilation, In the Jewish lexicon, assimilation is a dirty word, a word of death. Had my ancestors, all of them for two millennia, had not steadfastly refused to assimilate, I would not be Jewish, which to me would make life not worth living. American Jews are assimilating at an alarming rate because as always throughout Jewish history it is the expedient thing to do. All you have to do is be a Jewish American in the Italian American way. Reduce your heritage to a few dishes, a few words, a few religious observances, marry a non-Jew, and that’s all, you are no longer Jewish. They say there are five or six million Jews in America. Maybe so, but most of them are the last of their kind. If America has a Jewish problem, all one has to do is wait.
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