Who We Are (18)

The following is my abridgement of chapter 18 of William Pierce’s history of the white race, Who We Are:

Christianity Spreads from Levant
to Dying Roman Empire,
then to Conquering Germans
Germans ‘Aryanize’ Christian Myths,
but Racially Destructive Ethics Retained



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During the turbulent and eventful fifth century the Germans largely completed their conquest of the West. In the early years of that century German tribesmen, who had been raiding the coast of Roman Britain for many years, began a permanent invasion of the southeastern portion of the island, a development which was eventually to lead to a Germanic Britain.

In 476 Odoacer, an Ostrogothic chieftain who had become a general of Rome’s armies, deposed the last Roman emperor and ruled in his own name as king of Italy. Meanwhile the Visigoths were expanding their holdings in Gaul and completing their conquest of Spain, except for the northwestern region already held by their Suebian cousins and an enclave in the Pyrenees occupied by a remnant of the aboriginal Mediterranean inhabitants of the peninsula, the Basques.

And throughout the latter part of the century the Franks, the Alemanni, and the Burgundians were consolidating their own holds on the former Roman province of Gaul, establishing new kingdoms and laying the basis for the new European civilization of the Middle Ages. Everywhere in the West the old, decaying civilization centered on the Mediterranean gave way to the vigorous White barbarians from the North.

Oriental Infection. But the Germans did not make their conquest of the Roman world without becoming infected by some of the diseases which flourished so unwholesomely in Rome during her last days. Foremost among these was an infection which the Romans themselves had caught during the first century, a consequence of their own conquest of the Levant. It had begun as an offshoot of Judaism, had established itself in Jerusalem and a few other spots in the eastern Mediterranean area, and had traveled to Rome with Jewish merchants and speculators, who had long found that city an attractive center of operations.

It eventually became known to the world as Christianity, but for more than two centuries it festered in the sewers and catacombs of Rome, along with dozens of other alien religious sects from the Levant; its first adherents were Rome’s slaves, a cosmopolitan lot from all the lands conquered by the Romans. It was a religion designed to appeal to slaves: blessed are the poor, the meek, the wretched, the despised, it told them, for you shall inherit the earth from the strong, the brave, the proud, and the mighty; there will be pie in the sky for all believers, and the rest will suffer eternal torment. It appealed directly to a sense of envy and resentment of the weak against the strong.

Edict of Milan. By the end of the third century Christianity had become the most popular as well as the most militant of the Oriental sects flourishing among the largely non-Roman inhabitants of the decaying Roman Empire. Even as late as the first years of the fourth century, under Emperor Diocletian, the Roman government was still making efforts to keep the Christians under control, but in 313 a new emperor, Constantine, decided that, if you can’t lick ’em, join ’em, and he issued an imperial edict legitimizing Christianity.

Although one of Constantine’s successors, Julian, attempted to reverse the continuing Christianization of the Roman Empire a few years later, it was already too late: the Goths, who made up the bulk of Rome’s armies by this time, had caught the infection from one of their own slaves, a Christian captive whom they called Wulfila.

Bischof_Ulfilas_erklärt_den_Goten_das_Evangelium

A Romanticized view of Wulfila
explaining the Gospels to the Goths in ca. 310

Wulfila was a tireless and effective missionary, and the Goths were an uprooted and unsettled people, among whom the new religion took hold easily. Wulfila’s translation of the Bible into Gothic greatly speeded up the process.

Conversion of the Franks. Before the end of the fourth century Christianity had also spread to the Vandals, Burgundians, Lombards, Gepids, and several other German tribes. A little over a century later the powerful nation of the Franks was converted. By the beginning of the second quarter of the sixth century, the only non-Christian Whites left were the Bavarians, Thuringians, Saxons, Frisians, Danes, Swedes, and Norse among the Germans—and virtually all the Balts and Slavs.

One can only understand the rapid spread of Christianity during the fourth and fifth centuries by realizing that, for all practical purposes, it had no opposition. That is, there was no other organized, militant, proselytizing church competing effectively with the Christian church.

Athanaric the Goth. The Christians had many individual opponents, of course: among the Romans several of the more responsible and civic-minded emperors, such as Diocletian, as well as what was left of the tradition-minded aristocracy; and among the Germans many farsighted leaders who resisted the imposition of an alien creed on their people and the abandonment of their ancient traditions. Athanaric, the great Gothic chieftain who led his people across the Danube in 376 to save them from the invading Huns, was notable in this regard.

Athanaric and the other traditionalists failed to halt the spread of Christianity, because they were only individuals. Although there were pagan priests, the traditional German religion never really had a church associated with it. It consisted in a body of beliefs, tales, and practices passed from generation to generation, but it had no centralized organization like Christianity.

Folk-religion. German religion was a folk-religion, which grew organically out of the people and out of the land they occupied. The boundary between a tribe’s most ancient historical legends and its religious myths, between its long-dead heroes and chieftains and its gods, was blurred at best. Because German religion belonged to the people and the land, it was not a proselytizing religion; the German attitude was that other peoples and races likewise had their own folk-religions, and it would be unnatural to impose one race’s religion on another race.

And because German religion was rooted in the land as well as in the people, it lost some of its viability when the people were uprooted from their land. It is no coincidence that the conversions of the Goths, Vandals, Burgundians, Lombards, Franks, and many other German tribes took place during the Voelkerwanderung, a period of strife, disorientation, and misery for many of those involved: a period when whole nations lost not only their ancient homelands but also their very identities.

Fire and Sword. After the Voelkerwanderung ended in the sixth century, the Christianization of the remaining pagan peoples of Europe proceeded much more slowly—and generally by fire and sword rather than by peaceful missionary effort. Whereas the Franks had become Christians more or less painlessly when their king Clovis (Chlodweg) converted for political reasons at the end of the fifth century, it was another 300 years before the Frankish king Charlemagne (Karl the Great) was able to bring about the conversion of his Saxon neighbors, and he accomplished that only by butchering half of them in a series of genocidal wars.

Early Christianity, in contrast to German religion, was as utterly intolerant as the Judaism from which it sprang. Even Roman religion, which, as an official state religion, equated religious observance with patriotism, tolerated the existence of other sects, so long as they did not threaten the state. But the early Christians were inspired by a fanatical hatred of all opposing creeds.

Also in contrast to German and Roman religion, Christianity, despite its specifically Jewish roots, claimed to be a universal (i.e., “catholic”) creed, equally applicable to Germans, Romans, Jews, Huns, and Negroes.

“Every place… shall be yours.” The Christians took the Jewish tribal god Yahweh, or Jehovah, and universalized him. Originally he seems to have been a deity associated with one of the dormant volcanoes of the Arabian peninsula, a god so distinctly Semitic that he had a binding business contract (“covenant”) with his followers: if the Jews would remain faithful and obedient to him, he would deliver all the wealth of the non-Jewish peoples of the world into their hands. Observant Jews even today remind themselves of this by fastening mezuzoth to the door frames of their homes, wherein the verses from their Torah spelling out the Jews’ side of their larcenous deal with Yahweh are inscribed (Deuteronomy 6:4-9, 11:13-21; Yahweh’s reciprocal obligations are in the verses immediately following).

Nevertheless, the early Christian church, armed with an effective organization and a proselytizing fervor, and armored with a supreme contempt for everything non-Christian, was able to supplant Jupiter and Wotan alike with Yahweh.

The Germans, however, recreated the Semitic Yahweh in the image of their own Wotan, even as they accepted the new faith. The entire Christian ritual and doctrine, in fact, were to a large extent “Aryanized” by the Germans to suit their own inner nature and lifestyle. They played down the slave-religion aspects of Christianity (“the meek shall inherit the earth”) and emphasized the aspects which appealed to them (“I come bearing not peace, but a sword”). The incoherence and the multitude of internal inconsistencies of the doctrine made this sort of eclecticism easy.

Yule, Easter, Harvest Festival. In general, the Germans accepted without difficulty the Christian rituals—especially those which, like Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving were deliberately redesigned to correspond to pagan rituals and festivals of long standing—and the myths (parthenogenesis, turning water into wine, curing the blind, resurrection from the dead, etc.), and they ignored the ethics (turn the other cheek, all men are brothers, etc.).

A Frank of the seventh or eighth century would tremble in superstitious awe before some fragment of bone or vial of dried blood which the Church had declared a sacred relic with miracle-working powers—but if you smote him on the cheek you would have a fight on your hands, not another cheek turned.

As for the brotherhood of man and equality in the eyes of the Lord, the Germans had no time for such nonsense; when confronted with non-Whites, they instinctively reached for the nearest lethal weapon. They made mincemeat out of the Avars, who were cousins to the Huns, in the seventh century, and the Christianized Franks or Goths of that era would know exactly what to do with a few hundred thousand rioting American Blacks; they would, in fact, positively relish the opportunity to do what needed doing.

It could not have been expected to be otherwise. In the first place, a totally alien religion cannot be imposed on a spiritually healthy people—and the Germans were still essentially healthy, despite the dislocations caused by the Voelkerwanderung. Christianity had to be modified to suit their nature—at least, temporarily. In the second place, the average German did not have to come to grips with the alien moral imperatives of the Sermon on the Mount. All he had to do was learn when to genuflect; wrestling with Holy Writ was exclusively the problem of the clergy.

It was not until the Reformation, in the sixteenth century, that the laity began studying the Bible and thinking seriously about its contents. Even then, however, the tendency was to interpret alien teachings in a way that left them more or less compatible with natural tendencies.

Genealogie_der_Moral_coverSlave Morality. But Christian ethics—the slave morality preached in the Roman catacombs—was like a time bomb ticking away in Europe—a Trojan horse brought inside the fortress, waiting for its season. That season came, and the damage was done. Today Christianity is one of the most active forces working from within to destroy the White race.

From the Christian churches came the notion of “the White man’s burden,” along with the missionaries who saw in every African cannibal or Chinese coolie a soul to be saved, of equal value in the eyes of Jehovah to any White soul. It is entirely a Christian impulse—at least, on the part of the average American voter, if not the government—which sends American food and medical supplies to keep alive swarming millions of Asiatics, Africans, and Latins every time they have a famine, so that they can continue to outbreed Whites.

The otherworldly emphasis on individual salvation, on an individual relationship between Creator and creature which relegates the relationship between individual and race, tribe, and community to insignificance; the inversion of natural values inherent in the exalting of the botched, the unclean, and the poor in spirit in the Sermon on the Mount—the injunction to “resist not evil”—all are prescriptions for racial suicide. Indeed, had a fiendishly clever enemy set out to concoct a set of doctrines intended to lead the White race to its destruction, he could hardly have done better.

The “White guilt” syndrome exploited so assiduously by America’s non-White minorities is a product of Christian teachings, as is the perverse reverence for “God’s chosen people” which has paralyzed so many Christians’ wills to resist Jewish depredations.

Moses Replaces Hermann. Not the least of the damage done by the Christianization of Europe was the gradual replacement of White tradition, legend, and imagery by that of the Jews. Instead of specifically Celtic or German or Slavic heroes, the Church’s saints, many of them Levantines, were held up to the young for emulation; instead of the feats of Hermann or Vercingetorix, children were taught of the doings of Moses and David.

symbolEuropeans’ artistic inspiration was turned away from the depiction of their own rich heritage and used to glorify that of an alien race; Semitic proverbs and figures of speech took precedence over those of Indo-European provenance; Europeans even abandoned the names of their ancestors and began giving Jewish names to their children: Samuel and Sarah, John and Joan, Michael and Mary, Daniel and Deborah.

Despite all these long-term consequences of Christianity, however, the immediate symptoms of the infection which the conquering Germans picked up from the defeated Romans were hardly noticeable; White morals and manners, motivations and behavior remained much as they had been, for they were rooted in the genes—but now they had a new rationale.

Today’s Christian Patriots. And it is only fair to note that even today a fairly substantial minority of White men and women who still think of themselves as Christians have not allowed their sounder instincts to be corrupted by doctrines suited to a following of mongrelized slaves. They ignore the Jewish origins of Christianity and justify their instinctive dislike and distrust of Jews with the fact that the Jews, in demanding that Jesus be killed, became a race forever accursed (“His blood be on us and on our children”).

They interpret the divine injunction of brotherhood as applying only to Whites. Like the Franks of the Middle Ages, they believe what suits them and conveniently forget or invent their own interpretation for the rest. Were they the Christian mainstream today, the religion would not be the racial menace that it is. Unfortunately, however, they are not; virtually none are actively affiliated with any of the larger, established Christian churches.

Who We Are (24)

The following is my abridgement of chapter 24 of William Pierce’s history of the white race, Who We Are:

Middle Ages Were Era of Slow, Ordered Evolution
Eastern Europe Had Different Experience With Jews than West
Reformation Resulted in Increased Judaization of Western Europe
Inside the White Citadel, Jews Wreak Havoc on Society
Capitalists, Reds Collaborate Against West

MaxfieldParrish_1

This installment continues the history of the interaction of the Jews with the European peoples, begun in the previous installment, and carries it from the Middle Ages into the modern era.

The salient characteristic of the Middle Ages was order. The feudal society of the early Middle Ages (from ca. 700 until ca. 1200) was a highly structured society: not only did every man have his place and every place its man, but the relationship of each man to every other was strictly defined. From the lord of the manor down to the village idiot, every person was bound to others by mutual responsibilities and obligations.

The corporate society which flourished in Western Europe from the mid-12th century until its destruction by the rise of finance capitalism in the 18th century was able to approach the ideal primarily because it was a substantially homogeneous society, and its institutions had developed organically over a very long period of time.

Both in theory and in practice corporatism had its flaws, the principal one being that it gained stability at the expense of innovation: medieval society was extraordinarily conservative, and technical progress came at a somewhat slower pace than it might have in a less-regulated society. On the other hand, a reasonable degree of stability is always a prerequisite for continuing progress, and the medieval compromise may not have been so bad after all.

Insofar as personal freedom was concerned, the socially irresponsible “do your own thing” attitude definitely was not so common as it is today, but neither was there a lack of opportunities for the adventurous element among the population to give expression to its urges. It should be remembered that the most common theme of the folk tales which had their origin in the Middle Ages—exemplified in the Grimm brothers’ collection—was that of the young man setting out alone into the world to make his fortune. Certainly, there was more personal freedom, in practice, in the Middle Ages for the average craftsman than there was in the capitalist period of mass production which followed.

For our purpose here, the essential thing about medieval society was that it was an ordered, structured society, with a population base which was, in each particular region, homogeneous. Thus, it was a society imbued with certain natural defenses against penetration by alien elements.

Gottlieb-Jews_Praying_in_the_Synagogue_on_Yom_KippurThe Jew in medieval Europe had relatively little elbow room. He did not fit into the well established, well ordered scheme of things. He was an outsider looking into a self-sufficient world which had little use for his peculiar talents.

This was the situation for the better part of a millennium, and throughout that long period the foremost goal of the Jew was to destroy the order, to break down the structure, to loosen the bonds which held European society together, and thereby to create an opening for himself.

Order is the Jew’s mortal foe. One cannot understand the role of the Jew in modern European history unless one first understands this principle.

It explains why the Jew is the eternal Bolshevik: why he is a republican in a monarchist society, a capitalist in a corporate society, a communist in a capitalist society, a liberal “dissident” in a communist society—and, always and everywhere, a cosmopolitan and a race mixer in a homogeneous society.

And, in particular, it explains the burning hatred the Jews felt for European institutions during the Middle Ages. It explains why the modern Jewish spokesman, Abram Sachar, in his A History of the Jews, frankly admits that the universal attitude of the Jews toward medieval European society was, “Crush the infamous thing!”

Yet, even in the Middle Ages the Jews did not do badly for themselves, and they certainly had little cause for complaint, except when their excesses brought the wrath of their hosts down on their heads. As was pointed out in the previous installment, the Jews established an early stranglehold on the commerce of Europe, monopolizing especially foreign trade.

Their real forte, however, was in two staples of commerce forbidden to most Gentiles in Christian Europe: gold and human flesh. Aristotle’s denunciations of usury had influenced the leaders of the Church against moneylending, and the practice was consequently forbidden to Christians on religious grounds—although the ban was not always strictly observed. The field was left almost entirely to the Jews, who, in contrast to the Christians, used their religion as an explicit justification for usury.

Moses, the purported author of this basis for all Jewish business ethics, was speaking from the experience the Jews had already gained in Egypt when he indicated that the ultimate goal of moneylending to the strangers in a land “to which thou goest” was to “possess” the land. When it came to the slave trade, the words of Moses were not just permissive, but imperative: “Both thy male and female slaves, whom thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen [goyim] that are round about you; of them shall ye buy male and female slaves…” (Leviticus 25:44-46). It is truly said by the Jews themselves that the Hebrew spirit breathes in every word of the Old Testament!

In Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean area the guild system did not reach the full development that it did in the West and the North of Europe, and Jews in Russia, Poland, Lithuania, and parts of Italy engaged in a few trades besides moneylending and slave dealing: the liquor business, in particular. Jews eventually owned most of the inns of Eastern Europe. They also monopolized the garment industry throughout large areas of the East and the South, and the Jewish tailor, the Jewish rag-picker, and the Jewish used clothes peddler are proverbial figures.

The relatively greater opportunities for exploitation of the Gentiles in the East, not to mention the strong presence of the Khazar-descended Jews there, led to a gradual concentration of Europe’s Jews in Poland and Russia during the Middle Ages. By the latter part of the 18th century, half the world’s Jews were living in Poland. Their power became so great that many medieval Polish coins, minted during periods when Jews were in charge not only of collecting the taxes, but also of administering the treasury itself, bore inscriptions in Hebrew. The Jews even acquired title to the land on which many Polish and Russian churches stood, and they then charged the Christian peasants admission to their own churches on Sunday mornings.

In the West the Europeans froze the Jews out of the industrial and much of the commercial life of medieval society; in the East the Jews froze the Europeans out. In much of Eastern Europe, Jews became the only mercantile class in a world of peasants and laborers, and they used all their cunning and all the power of their wealth to keep their Gentile hosts down.

Reaction inevitably set in the East, however, just as it had in the West. The 17th century was a period of great uprisings against the Jews, a period when such heroes as the great Cossack hetman and Jew-killer, Bohdan Khmelnytsky, flourished.

In the 18th century the rulers themselves were finally obliged to take strong measures against the Jews of the East, so bad had the situation become. Russia’s Catherine the Great (1729-96), who had inherited most of Poland’s Jews after the partition of the latter country, extended and enforced prohibitions against them which not only limited their economic activity but banned them altogether from large areas.

It is this which goes a long way toward explaining how the Poles, saddled with a communist government consisting almost entirely of Jews after the Second World War, have been able in the last three decades to do what Adolf Hitler could not: namely, make Poland into a country which is virtually Jew-free today. Of more immediate relevance at this point in our story, it is the relatively weaker natural resistance to Jews in the West which suggests why it was relatively easy for the Jews there to take advantage of the breakdown of the medieval order and the dissolution of long-established social structures in order to make new openings for themselves.

lutherThe Reformation

Another factor which undoubtedly made the West more susceptible to the Jews was the Reformation, the lasting effects of which were confined largely to Europe’s northwestern regions, in fact, to the Germanic-speaking regions: Germany, Scandinavia, England and Scotland, Switzerland. The Church of Rome and its Eastern Orthodox offshoot had always been ambivalent in their attitudes toward the Jews. On the one hand, they fully acknowledged the Jewish roots of Christianity, and Jesus’ Jewishness was taken for granted. On the other hand, the Jews had rejected Jesus’ doctrine and killed him, saying, “His blood be on us and on our children” (Matthew 27:25), and the medieval Church was inclined to take them at their word.

In addition to the stigma of deicide the Jews also bore the suspicion which naturally fell on heretics of any sort. During the Middle Ages people took Christianity quite seriously, and anyone professing an unorthodox religious belief, whether he actively sought converts or not, was considered a danger to the good order of the community and to the immortal soul of any Christian exposed to him.

What the Protestant reformers did for the Jews was give the Hebrew Scriptures a much more important role in the life of the peoples of Europe than they had enjoyed previously. Among Catholics it was not the Bible but the Church which was important. The clergy read the Bible; the people did not. The people looked to the clergy for spiritual guidance, not to the Bible.

Among Protestants that order was reversed. The Bible became an authority unto itself, which could be consulted by any man. Its Jewish characters—Abraham, Moses, Solomon, David, and the rest—became heroic figures, suffused with an aura of sanctity. Their doings and sayings became household bywords.

It is ironic that the father of the Reformation, Martin Luther, who inadvertently helped the Jews fasten their grip on the West, detested them and vigorously warned his Christian followers against them. His book Von den Jueden und ihren Luegen (On the Jews and their Lies), published in 1543, is a masterpiece.

Luther’s antipathy to the Jews came after he learned Hebrew and began reading the Talmud. He was shocked and horrified to find that the Hebrew religious writings were dripping with hatred and contempt for all non-Jews. Luther wrote:

Do not their Talmud and rabbis say that it is no sin to kill if a Jew kills a heathen, but it is a sin if he kills a brother in Israel? It is no sin if he does not keep his oath to a heathen. Therefore, to steal and rob, as they do with their usury, from a heathen is a divine service. For they hold that they cannot be too hard on us nor sin against us, because they are the noble blood and circumcised saints. We, however, are cursed goyim. And they are the masters of the world and we are their servants, yea, their cattle.

Alas, Luther could not have it both ways. He had already sanctified the Jews by elevating the status of their history, their legends, and their religion to that of Holy Writ. His translation of the Old Testament into German and his dissemination of the Jewish scriptures among his followers vitiated all his later warnings against the Jews. Today the church he founded studiously ignores those warnings.

Luther had recognized the evils in the Christian Church of his day and in the men who ruled the Church. He also recognized the evil in the Jews and the danger they posed to Europe. He had the courage to denounce both the Church and the Jews, and for that the White race will be indebted to him for as long as it endures.

The great tragedy of Luther is that he failed to go one step further and to recognize that no religion of Jewish origin is a proper religion for men and women of European race. When he cut himself and the majority of the Germanic peoples off from Rome, he failed at the same time to cut away all the baggage of Jewish mythology which had been imposed on Europe by Rome. Instead he made of that baggage a greater spiritual burden for his people than it already was.

Tora

The consequence was that within a century of Luther’s death much of Northern Europe was firmly in the grip of a new superstition as malignant as the old one, and it was one in which the Jews played a much more explicit role. Before, the emphasis had been on the New Testament: that is, on Christianity as a breakaway sect from Judaism, in which the differences between the two religions were stressed. The role models held up to the peoples of Europe were the Church’s saints and martyrs, most of whom were non-Jewish. The parables taught to children were often of European origin.

Among the Protestants the Old Testament gained a new importance, and with it so did the Hebrew patriarchs as role models, while Israel’s folklore became the new source of moral inspiration for Europe. Perhaps nothing so clearly demonstrates the change, and the damage to the European sense of identity which accompanied it, as the sudden enthusiasm for bestowing Hebrew names on Christian children.

The Reformation did more for the Jews than merely sanctifying the Old Testament. It shattered the established order of things and brought chaos in political as well as spiritual affairs—chaos eagerly welcomed by the Jews. Germany was so devastated by a series of bloody religious wars that it took her a century and a half to recover. In some German principalities two-thirds of the population was annihilated during the conflicts between Catholics and Protestants in the period 1618-1648, commonly known as the “Thirty Years War.”

Everywhere during the 17th century the Jews took advantage of the turmoil, moving back into countries from which they had been banned (such as England), moving to take over professions from which they had been excluded, insinuating themselves into confidential relationships with influential leaders in literary and political circles, profiting from the sufferings of their hosts and strengthening their hold, burrowing deep into the rubble and wreckage of medieval society so that they could more easily undermine whatever rose in its stead.

Napoleon_stellt_den_israelitsichen_Kult_wieder_her,_30._Mai_1806

An 1806 French print depicts
Napoleon Bonaparte emancipating the Jews


In the following century came Europe’s next great cataclysm, which broke down what was left of the old order. It was the French Revolution—and it was the first major political event in Western Europe in which Jews played a significant role, other than as financiers. Even so, public feeling against the Jews was such that they still found it expedient to exercise much of their influence through Gentile front men.

Honore Gabriel Riqueti, Comte de Mirabeau (1749-91), the Revolution’s fieriest orator—the spendthrift, renegade son of an aristocrat, disowned by his father and always in need of a loan—was one of these. Another was the bloodthirsty monster Maximilien Marie Isidore de Robespierre (1758-94), dictator of the Revolutionary Tribunal which kept the guillotine busy and spilled France’s best blood into the gutters of Paris while the rabble cheered. Both Mirabeau and Robespierre worked tirelessly for their Jewish patrons, supporting legislation granting new rights and privileges to the Jews of France and denouncing French patriots who opposed the Jewish advances.

It was in the new series of European wars spawned by the Revolution, in which Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) was the leading figure, that the Jews extended the gains they had made in France to much of the rest of Europe. Behind Napoleon’s armies, which were kept solvent by Jewish moneylenders, marched a ragtag band of Jews to oversee the pulling down of all barriers against their brethren in each country in which French arms triumphed. Ghettos were abolished, all restrictions on Jewish activities were declared void, and anyone who spoke out against the Jews was in danger of being put before a military firing squad.

Despite the enormous services he performed for the Jews, it is clear from his comments, on many different occasions, that Napoleon personally despised them. “The Jews are a vile people, cowardly and cruel,” he said in reference to some of the atrocities committed by Jews during the Reign of Terror.

In a letter of March 6, 1808, to his brother Jerome, Napoleon wrote: “I decided to improve the Jews. But I do not want more of them in my kingdom. Indeed, I have done all to prove my scorn of the vilest nation in the world.” And when, in 1807, Napoleon issued decrees limiting the extent to which Jewish moneylenders could prey on the French peasantry, the Jews screamed in rage against him.

But the damage had already been done; Napoleon had pulled down the last of the barriers, and by the time of his disgrace and exile the Jews were solidly entrenched nearly everywhere.

It was those Jews who pushed their way into the professions—into teaching Gentile university students, into writing books for Gentile readers, into composing music for Gentile audiences, into painting pictures and directing films for Gentile viewers, into interpreting and passing judgment on every facet of Gentile culture and society for Gentile newspaper readers—who really got inside the Gentile citadel.