Okay, so I'll be the first to say that I have a lot of problems with some of what Israel does, just like I have problems with many governments in the world. It saddens me to see antisemitism fueled by legitimiate criticisms of Israel and it worries me when antisemites make legitimate criticisms seem without merit. That brings me to an attack I've seen very surprisingly around the Freedom Movement here in Phoenix.
The Khazars were a semi-nomadic Turkik people between the 600s-900s AD. They lived and ruled in what is now Khazakstan, Parts of Russia, The Ukraine, Azerbajan, and parts of Turkey. During a short time in Khazar history, their royalty chose upon themselves to convert to Judaism. Does this mean they stayed Jews after that? No. Maybe some did. However, more to the point, does this explain all the vast populace of Jews throughout western and eastern Europe?
There had been Jews in Europe since before the time of the Christian Savior Jesus. As early as 2 BC, there were over 7000 openly Jewish people in the Roman Empire. As early as the 3rd and 4th centuries BC, there were Jewish artifacts like the Menorah found in places like Switzerland and Germany. There were also collections of evidence in France and Northern Italy of Jewish life from the 400s and 500s AD.
Between 800-1100 AD in Europe, there were upwards of 1.5 million Jews living there. Jews were warmly embraced by their non-jewish neighbors until around 1300, when, despite all their contributions to society (many as doctors), they were being expelled from their newfound homes (after having left Israel those many years before, but continuing their religious traditions).
Between the German Crusade in 1096, the the French Crusade in 1147, and Shepherds Crusades in 1251 and 1320, many Jews were attacked, killed, and had property taken away. After the crusades came the expulsions, from England in 1290, from France in 1396, Austria in 1421, and Spain in 1492 (despite their golden age of thriving their since 800 AD).
This is when, get this, many Jews fled North and East to Poland and then Russia, Belarus, Romania, Ukraine. Some others insead came to the New World with explorers, to what we now call America.
Let's turn back now to the "Khazar anscestral theory" so widely regurgitated on the antisemitic spheres of the internet. Khazars, as an empire, were known to have their court convert quite often. They began with Turkik Shamanism, and funnily enough, abandoned the practice as their kings kept having to be sacrificed.
They then dabbled in Judaism, having realized that to their west, there was a growing Christian empire and to their East, a growing Muslim Empire. At the time, both the Christians and the Moselms viewed the Jews with at least some esteem, which the Khazars felt would help them with trade and merchants between both of their surrounding communities.
The Khazars came to see themselves in the capacity of "protectors" of international Jewry, perhaps out of newfound spiritual enlightenment, perhaps out of fondness for their new friends and spiritual advisors.
Anyway, many in the antisemitic world have proposed that Khazars are genetically related to and in fact genetic descendants of Ashkenazi Jews. This includes many in the racist right and the Christian Identity Movement and aryan and esoteric Nazism. Two Authors whose research is documented on this are:
Michael Barkun, Religion and the Racist Right: The Origins of the Christian Identity Movement, UNC Press, 1997, ISBN 0807846384, pp. 137-139. ^ a b c d e
Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke, Black Sun: Aryan cults, esoteric nazism, and the politics of identity, NYU Press, 2002, ISBN 0814731554, p. 237.
The Christian Identity Movement, Black Israelites, and British Israelites have tried and failed to prove this connection from Jews to Khazars in an attempt to delegitimize the Ashkenazi connection to Israel.
^ a b c d Lewis, Bernard. Semites and Anti-Semites, W.W. Norton and Company, 1999, ISBN 0-393-31839-7, p. 48. ^ a b Benny Morris, The Road to Jerusalem: Glubb Pasha, Palestine and the Jews, I.B.Tauris, 2003, ISBN 1860649890, p. 22. ^ "Arab anti-Semitism might have been expected to be free from the idea of racial odium, since Jews and Arabs are both regarded by race theory as Semites, but the odium is directed, not against the Semitic race, but against the Jews as a historical group. The main idea is that the Jews, racially, are a mongrel community, most of them being not Semites, but of Khazar and European origin." Yehoshafat Harkabi, "Contemporary Arab Anti-Semitism: its Causes and Roots", in Helen Fein, The Persisting Question: Sociological Perspectives and Social Contexts of Modern Antisemitism, Walter de Gruyter, 1987, ISBN 311010170X, p. 424.
Well, Halina, you may ask, "Where's the proof that it isn't true?" We have that very genetic proof. Now, usually the accuser or alleger has to find proof to back up his claims, but this is about Jewish People, we always have extra hoops to jump through. Here's your proof that the Khazars are not the anscestors of modern Ashkenazi Jews:
1. ^ Behar, Doron M.; Ene Metspalu, Toomas Kivisild, Alessandro Achilli, Yarin Hadid, Shay Tzur, Luisa Pereira, Antonio Amorim, Lluı's Quintana-Murci, Kari Majamaa, Corinna Herrnstadt, Neil Howell, Oleg Balanovsky, Ildus Kutuev, Andrey Pshenichnov, David Gurwitz, Batsheva Bonne-Tamir, Antonio Torroni, Richard Villems, and Karl Skorecki (March 2006). "The Matrilineal Ancestry of Ashkenazi Jewry: Portrait of a Recent Founder Event" (PDF). The American Journal of Human Genetics 78 (3): 487–97.doi:10.1086/500307. PMID 16404693.PMC 1380291.
The above is a link to a PDF describing the genetic findings.
There you go. Please either omit this Khazar/Jew argument from future dialogues or otherwise know you're lying.
I hope you pass this onto anyone fighting for freedom and truth who may need to amend what they think about European Jews.