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Why are Jews hated by so many people?

 
 
Joe Nation
 
  0  
Sun 1 Feb, 2004 05:20 pm
Okay, if we are done now with congratulating the English royalty on their exceptionally decent behavior regarding the Jews of London, could someone speak to the actual question?


Joe
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Setanta
 
  1  
Sun 1 Feb, 2004 05:23 pm
What a shame we haven't gotten with your agenda, Joe, you have my profound, chagrined apologies . . .
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Joe Nation
 
  1  
Sun 1 Feb, 2004 10:41 pm
Set: with all due respect, try answering the question, or challenge it's premise or challenge what I've said. Something.

Joe
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Setanta
 
  1  
Mon 2 Feb, 2004 06:01 am
I have responded to the question, as have those who have engaged with me in this recent digression. If you've read the entire thread, you know that. And i know you've been around on-line long enough to know that digressions occur in any thread, and especially in those in which all the main points of the topic have been discussed.
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Miller
 
  0  
Fri 6 Feb, 2004 11:58 am
_-=-_ wrote:
As a very short alien once said, "Fear leads to Anger. Anger leads to Hate. Hate leads to suffering."

People that hate jews, fear them.


As Jew, I doubt this very much! Confused
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Sat 21 Feb, 2004 10:22 pm
truth
I havn't read all the explanations profferred here, but I'd like to suggest another factor (assuming it hasn't already been suggested). The hatred for Jews is also expressed toward other diasphoric peoples, especially the Chinese and East Indians. Peoples who are strangers in the lands of others and who must engage in commerce as middlemen because they are not allowed to own land, the basis for full membership and franchise, eventually gain wealth, often becoming, as their only option, money lenders and merchants. As powerful "strangers/outsiders" they are sitting ducks for demogogues who wish to displace anger away from themselves.
One must sympathize with the situations of Jews who have had the hatred toward them ideologicallly codified throughout Europe and have the suffered the horrors of the Holocaust. One can understand why, now having a fully armed State (with nuclear capacity) and surrounded by "haters", they have become very attached to their military power, the means by which they can resist ever again being subjugated to sub-human conditions.
Nevertheless, Isreal must, in its own long-term interest find a way to go beyond a purely military self-defense. The inevitable development of highly portable nuclear weapons will eventually guarantee the end of Isreal--not to mention the United States, also a greatly feared and hated commercial-military power.
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Sun 22 Feb, 2004 11:52 am
"The inevitable development of highly portable nuclear weapons will eventually guarantee the end of Isreal--not to mention the United States, "

As nuclear weapons have been miniturised for a long time, it only remains to ask How Long You Got?
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Rick d Israeli
 
  1  
Sun 22 Feb, 2004 02:38 pm
Anti-Semitism has always been there, not only in Europe but also in other parts of the world. The fact that Jews were so hated in most of Europe comes from circumstances which were created by Europeans themselves. For they were not allowed to participate in many different jobs, things like trading and moneylending were very attractive for Jews: it was allowed for Jews to do this, you could get very rich by it (so you could "pay" your own protection) and you were not forced to stay in one place - when things got ugly, you could leave immediately. In Middle Age Europe, it were mostly kings and nobles who protected the Jews, because they could be of very good use for them. Because of this, Jews became synonym for the authorities. In times of political instability, Jews were therefore very easy to blame. This made Jews paria forever.
Throughout the centuries, assimilating or emigrating to safer places seemed the only good ways for Jews to guarantee a good and safe life. A part of my family, for example, choose for assimilation and even went so far to adopt Christianity. In the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, the USA was a safe haven for a lot of Eastern European Jews - approximately 2 million immigrated to America -, and later on it became Israel. The Jewish nation is always on the move. Because success seems to be in a lot of cases equal to protection and a safe spot in this cruel world, this is what a lot of Jews did and do. The downside of that is that - as in the Middle Ages - some people are seeing "Jews" as "authority" and "power", because a relatively large proportion of intelligentsia and business people in the Western world have Jewish roots. This does not mean every person at an important place is Jewish, absolutely not! Especially in Europe this is still a small minority among all those powerful people. But it's just soooo easy for some to blame it all on the Jews, like people have done for centuries and centuries.
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Sun 22 Feb, 2004 03:01 pm
truth
The question of this thread, "Why are Jews hated by so many people?" should be re-phrased as "Why are so many people afflicted with anti-semitism?" Or: "Why are xenophobia and bigotry so prevalent in America and the world?
I am not Jewish.
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InfraBlue
 
  1  
Sun 22 Feb, 2004 05:14 pm
Why are Jews regarded as an entity separate from the rest of humankind?
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Sun 22 Feb, 2004 08:52 pm
truth
Infra, what do you mean. How is that different from most people categorization of eskimos as being a distinct population?
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InfraBlue
 
  1  
Sun 22 Feb, 2004 10:53 pm
Well, in regard to the topic of this thread that's about Jews being hated so much, and observations that anti-Semitism has always been in all parts of the world for centuries and centuries, that they are the whipping-boys of the world, the Inuit (Eskimos) are hated to an infinitesimally small degree as compared to Jews. It was in the context of that singular hatred that is the theme of this thread that I ask the question.
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hobitbob
 
  1  
Sun 22 Feb, 2004 11:18 pm
Most of the blame for anti-semitism I lay squarely at the toes of christianity. In an effort to distance itself for Judaism, Christian writings quickly shifted the blame for Jesus' death from Rome to the Jews. The patristic writings also called for harsh sanctions against the Jews in response to the "blood libel." Augustine is one of the first of the church fathers to call for some limited protection for them, and introduced the doctrine of witness in Contra Iudeam. Later, Bernard of Clairvaux called for an end to the wholesale slaughter of Jewish communities that occurred as crusading armies moved eastward.
But, hardcore antisemitism returned with the rise of the mendicant orders in the 13th century, and never really slowed down until after WWII.
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Mon 23 Feb, 2004 07:51 am
I don't disagree with any of the excellent historical analysis by Setanta and Hobitbob. But I get the impression this question is more directed at the present. In which case there is an obvious answer. No one with an ounce of compassion could fail to be moved by the Jewish story of the 20th century. What a tragedy that that story and that lesson for mankind is in danger of being obscured by the stealing of land in Palestine, and the foolishness of president Truman in rushing to recognise the state of Israel.
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Mon 23 Feb, 2004 08:05 am
not unconnected with this question

http://www.gush-shalom.org/media/seperationmap_eng.swf
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Rick d Israeli
 
  1  
Mon 23 Feb, 2004 02:30 pm
Christianity did encourage anti-Semitism in the first place - Jews killed Jesus Christ, they don't want to except the new religion etc. - but this has shifted during the centuries. With the rising of so-called "Völkische" nationalism in the end of the 19th century but mostly in the (beginning of) the 20th century, Jews started to be seen as pariah's: they could not belong to an European nation, because they weren't Christian for example, but also did they look different, they had a different culture (mostly the so-called Ost-Juden like they were named in Germany and by Hitler, the religious and segregated Jews from Eastern-Europe, for many Western Jews were already highly assimilated) and sometimes they spoke a different language (Yiddish). In Germany they weren't Germans, but they also weren't Dutchmen in the Netherlands, French in France, Russians in Russia according to a lot of extreme nationalists in these countries. In times of hardship / economical crisis, like in Germany in the 1930's, this opinion was more welcome. Although Hitler did use Christian symbols in his attempt to destroy the Jews and Judaism, other factors were more important in the "new" anti-Semitism in Europe in the 19th, 20th and even 21th century.
I do not say by the way Christianity has no role in all of this. A lot of churches and churchleaders were and are openly anti-Semitic, also in these times. The role of for example the Roman-Catholic Church during the Holocaust is very controversial!
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InfraBlue
 
  1  
Mon 23 Feb, 2004 09:00 pm
Aside from Christianity in Europe, what accounts for the anti-Semitism in the other parts of the world, like the Middle East for example, pre-Zionism?
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hobitbob
 
  1  
Mon 23 Feb, 2004 09:21 pm
A lot of near eastern anti-semitism may be traced to the Ottoman empire, who were profoundly anti-semitic. It was more of an ethnic Turk thing than a religious thing at that time (15th century).
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Tue 24 Feb, 2004 04:27 am
I wouldn't pretend to know a great deal about medieval persecution of Jews, but I think it fair to say that Jewish communities did live in relatively harmonious conditions with their neighbours in several countries, Spain for example. Oliver Cromwell allowed Jews back into England. There are or were pre zionism well established if small, Jewish settlements all over the middle east. The only point I make is that persecution of Jews while it might be endemic in some countries is not automatic. There is no excuse for anti semitism, it is a particularly disgusting form of racism. But I come back to my previous point, that the resurgance of anti semitism today (and its certainly not confined to Europe) is as a result of the situation in the middle east. And it is frankly a despicable trick played by some militant Zionists to deliberately confuse and conflate criticism of the government of Israel with anti semitism. While this might frighten some from speaking out in case they are thought of as anti Jewish, it also promotes real anti semitism itself, something that these militant zionists don't seem to care about.
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hobitbob
 
  1  
Tue 24 Feb, 2004 10:58 am
In Spain, toleration was contingent on Islamic governance. See David Nirenberg's Communities of Violence: Persecution of Minorities in the Middle Ages, (Princeton, 1998), and Ron Moore's The Formation of a Persecuting Society: Power and Deviance in Western Europe, 920-1250, (New York: Blackwell,1991). As the reconquista gained momentum tolerance waned. In addition, as the above books point out, tolerance was never as widespread as the general public seems to assume.
In England, there were several periods of toleration and persecution. The Cromwell episode (which isn't medieval at all, but distinctly early modern) should probably be viewed as part of a larger picture of the socio-economic state in seventeenth century England.
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