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Editorial Article

The Legacy of Israel Shahak

 By Paul Bogdanor


“And then they come, 80 million worthy Germans, and each one has his decent Jew. Of course the others are vermin, but this one is an A-1 Jew.”

- Henrich Himmler


“My book is dedicated to Israel Shahak, who is in fact a Jewish person.”

- David Duke


In the late Israel Shahak, the political heirs of Heinrich Himmler discovered their very own A-1 Jew. They elevated him to that status over three decades, while he served on the faculty of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

 Israel Shahak was a professor of organic chemistry. In his spare time he was a disseminator of antisemitic lies. Almost every falsehood invoked by the Nazis to justify the Holocaust was eventually ratified by this tenured academic at one of Israel’s most prestigious institutions.

 According to Shahak, the Jews think of nothing but making money for the benefit of the Jewish state (“The force of Jewish devotion in assembling money is thought to be infinite”). According to Shahak, the Jews plan to dominate much of the world through an Israeli empire (“extending from ‘Algeria or Morocco’ from the west to China in the east, and from Kenya or even South Africa in the south to the USSR in the north”). According to Shahak, the Jews facilitate the spread of vice in order to enslave the masses (“Part of the motivation” must be “encouraging drug addiction and thus promoting political apathy”).

 Shahak openly collaborated with the Israeli Communist Party and its Frankenstein product, Matzpen. The Communist Party was, of course, a tool of the genocidal Soviet dictatorship, while Matzpen was even more bloodthirsty:


If the Israeli Jewish masses are not split from Zionism… then there will be another Holocaust. Eventually, the Arab revolution is going to win; if the masses of the Israeli Jews are not incorporated in it, they will necessarily be consumed by it.


Shahak not only raised no objection to this Hitlerian outburst; he joined its author in usurping control of the once-respectable Israeli League for Human and Civil Rights.

 Shahak was the first Israeli Jew to be published by an organ of the PLO. He was a constant contributor to the PLO’s main English-language journal. There he disgorged a stream of antisemitic poison. He claimed that all Zionists believe in “the rightness of biblically justified genocide,” which he called “the other Holocaust.” He vilified Jewish “Holocaust-mongers” who believe that “killing many children is just if it is done for Jewish benefit.” He announced that “Israeli Jews, and with them most Jews throughout the world, are undergoing a process of Nazification.” He asserted that the Nuremberg Laws “are infinitely more moderate than the ‘Gentile’ regulations in Talmudic Law.” And he defamedthe Jewish establishment in the USA and its intellectual slaves,” adding that “Jewish terror is very kosher in the USA!”

 Throughout his second career as an antisemitic propagandist for the would-be destroyers of his country, Israel Shahak was protected by officials at the Hebrew University. The excuses continued in the face of mounting public outrage. Yediot Ahronot asked why “someone like Israel Shahak is employed by our national university” when his conduct was “tantamount to treason.” In Ha’aretz, the Dean of Tel Aviv University’s Law School, Amnon Rubinstein, found “plenty of evidence” for treason charges. He noted that Shahak “does not even support those who want a simple war against Israel, but rather those who want the annihilation of its people.”

 Rubinstein stressed that Shahak’s employers were also his accomplices:


In my mind, the most serious aspect in the Shahak affair concerns his high-ranking position at the Hebrew University… A tenured job at the university does not mean that it is possible to join with murderers while retaining one’s job…


The Hebrew University does not act as one should expect of an academic institution. Worse still: it promoted Shahak to the rank of associate professor at the beginning of this year in the midst of his hate campaign.


But the campus bureaucrats were unmoved. The sole issue was “freedom of speech,” declared the Rector of the University. Academics could not be disciplined for inciting ethnic hatred and the destruction of their country. As for Shahak’s recent promotion, this merely reflected the merits of his chemistry classes.

 Shahak delivered his own response in the newspaper of the Communist Party: “The majority of the Jewish public in Israel (and also out of it) believes that only Jews are human beings… according to Jewish Talmudic law, legally valid in Israel today, any Gentile woman is considered as impure, slave, Gentile and whore.”

 As this example illustrates, Shahak saw no need to pretend, for the benefit of Western audiences, that the target of his hatred was “Zionism.” He always insisted that Israel was evil because it was Jewish. In his scurrilous tract Jewish History, Jewish Religion, he warned that Israel’s Jewish character was a danger to “all other peoples and states in the Middle East and beyond.” Judaism was the focus of evil on earth: not only had it created “one of the most totalitarian societies in the whole history of mankind,” even its beliefs were “motivated by the spirit of profit.” So malevolent are the Jews, wrote Shahak, that they secretly worship the Devil:


both before and after a meal, a pious Jew ritually washes his hands, uttering a special blessing. On one of these two occasions he is worshipping God, by promoting the divine union of Son and Daughter; but on the other he is worshipping Satan…


Shahak also found excuses for the near-genocidal Chmielnicki pogroms, which he classified as a “revolt of the oppressed.” According to Shahak, when the typical pogromist decided to murder Jews, it was because “Jews profited from his state of slavery and exploitation.”

 Needless to say, Jewish History, Jewish Religion was endorsed by Jew-haters everywhere. “I urge all of you to forego a movie or a dinner and treat yourself to this book” (Ingrid Rimland). “It is a volume which belongs in the library of every informed student of the world’s affairs” (Russ Granata). But it would be wrong to assume that admirers of the Third Reich have only just discovered Shahak. His services to these Nazis began decades ago.

 Ernst Zundel is the author of The Hitler We Loved and Why. He has been described as one of the largest distributors of Nazi literature on the planet. After deportation from Canada to his native Germany, he is now serving a prison sentence on multiple counts of incitement to racial hatred. Ernst Zundel proclaims that Israel Shahak was one of his idols from the late 1960s. Meetings with Shahak and other anti-Zionist Jews “opened up an entirely new world for me, the young German immigrant to Canada.” At a public lecture in the late 1970s, “Ernst and his friends demonstrated with signs outside the hall in support of Shahak.” According to Zundel, “We had a personal chat before the meeting.” On Shahak’s death his affection was undiminished:


Israel Shahak was quietly heroic. Decent people owe him a debt of gratitude. He was a voice of reason and decency in a country where “the people of the lie” live and hold sway – and, sadly, also govern. We will sorely miss him and his honesty.


Shahak is applauded scores of times on the hatemongering Zundelsite. To my knowledge, the Hebrew University never investigated the links between one of its most prominent professors and one of the world’s most notorious Nazis.

 The story is by no means unique. Dr. Israel Shahak risked all to bring what he calls ‘decent humanity’ to Judaism and the Zionist State,” declaimed the American racist David Duke, paying tribute to his hero for unmasking “hateful Judaic laws… that permit Jews to cheat, to steal, to rob, to kill, to rape, to lie, even to enslave Christians.” Shahak received pride of place, alongside Chomsky and Finkelstein, in Duke’s pantheon of Jews who “expose the truth about Zionism and Jewish supremacism.” Duke’s collected antisemitic ravings gave further evidence of his esteem:

 I will be the first to acknowledge that not all Jews support or share in this supremacism. In fact, a number of courageous Jews suffer greatly for opposing it. This book is dedicated to the memory of one of them: an Israeli Professor, Dr. Israel Shahak… He persuasively argued that unless both Jews and Gentiles courageously stand up against this supremacist agenda and its power, it will continue to pose a severe danger to Jews and Gentiles alike.

 In other words, an academic employed for thirty years by the Hebrew University had inspired a former commander of the Ku Klux Klan to pen the English-language sequel to Mein Kampf.

 Today the Blood Libels of Israel Shahak are available on almost any page on almost any Nazi website: AAARGH,, Ziopedia, Jewish Tribal Review, Jew Watch, and others too numerous to count. Shahak has received hundreds of accolades from the aspiring death camp guards of Stormfront. He has been praised to the skies by the frustrated death camp deniers at the Journal of Historical Review. Supporters of the Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust can consult Shahak on The Laws Against Non-Jews. Elsewhere antisemites can read the full text of Shahak’s Jewish History, Jewish Religion (“Israel Shahak Speaks the Truth!”) or they can sample Shahak’s views about The Jewish Hatred Towards Christianity (“anti-Christian feelings are literally exploding in Israel”), The Jewish Laundry of Drug Money (“New York Jews” play “the predominant part”) and The Jews Who Run USA (“these ‘Holocaust memories’ are a fake”).

 In light of the above, the Hebrew University may want to reconsider its assessment that the memory of Israel Shahak’s chemistry lessons will outlast his legacy to international Nazism.

 Paul Bogdanor is the editor, with Edward Alexander, of The Jewish Divide Over Israel, due in paperback later this month.


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