I feel deeply privileged to have this opportunity of addressing
It may come as a surprise to many of you to see an orthodox
Jew on a public platform, indeed the Jewish people have not
until recent years been involved in public debate neither
about themselves nor about any topics in the public domain.
The reason being that we, as a people in a Divinely commanded
exile are required to accept and live as exiles, not seeking
any extra privileges nor wishing to influence the Governments
of the Countries of our abode, who ever and where ever they
may be. The only exception to this rule is where our religion
or religious requisites were being threatened.
This exile was imposed upon us by the Almighty in his ultimate
wisdom and mercy, as the most suitable way for us to regain
our former glory as the Children of G-d the People of the
Book, not as some would have it as a punishment for our sins,
but rather as a medicine for our ailments.
Events of recent years have forced us to change in this respect,
by speaking out, as we are being publicly ostracized, for
the sins of others, who pretend to speak and act in our names,
though without justification.
These people who falsely claim to represent us, “the
idol worshipers of the golden calf” of modern history
the Zionist organisations of the lands of our exile, and in
particular of the Zionist state, have caused a great deal
of anguish and pain for Jews the world over.
The power of the media being such, that the voice of the weak
and the Just are ignored, and the actions of the wicked and
the powerful are widely proclaimed as the Just and Righteous,
so we are forced to protect our good name in the eyes of the
people’s of the World, who have received us with open
arms in our hour of the need, and those who have opened their
lands to receive us in our exile.
I and my colleagues here today thank you for giving us the
opportunity to explain what we as Orthodox Jews feel our duty
as a religious people, to publicize this tragic misrepresentation.
I hope and pray that with the Almighty’s help my words
come over loud and clear, to convince you all of our sincerity,
in wishing to see a world of Peace and Tranquillity for all
Nations, and People.
A bit of history will help to clarify the Jewish point of
Firstly, Judaism is a nation unlike any other in the sense
that our nationhood is based on a religion and a belief not
on territory. This is borne out by the fact that the Jewish
people have been without a land for 2000 years, but as long
as they retain their religion they retain their identity.
Though the Promised Land was a part of the religious teachings
in the sense that we were required to carry out many commandments
that were tied with the land while we lived there, they were
in no way required to maintain our religious existence as
a people. G-d promised us the land under certain conditions.
They were, that we had to maintain a high moral, ethical and
Regretfully, these conditions were not fulfilled. For the
last two thousand years or so the Jewish people have been
in a state of exile, decreed by the Almighty because they
did not maintain the standards expected of them. This situation
exists right up to the present day. We accept willingly the
Heavenly decree without question, and would not dream of rebelling
against it, in order to end it by our human intervention.
To do so would constitute a rebellion against the wishes of
In practical terms, although we have maintained our Jewish
identity by virtue of our attachment to our religion and not
maintaining close relations with others, never the less exile
for us means that we must be loyal subjects of the countries
in which we live and not attempt to rule over the established
indigenous populations of these countries even if they would
accept our rule willingly. We are sworn to keep our exile
on the pain of death.
This is true of any land we live in, but more so of Palestine,
and this would apply even if the land would be unoccupied
and it certainly applies when, as is the current situation,
there is an existing indigenous population. This prohibition
is a basic part of our teaching and we are forsworn not to
contravene it, and we are warned of the dire consequences
of doing so.
It would perhaps help to try and understand what is Zionism,
why do we speak out so strongly against. Are they not Jews
the same way as we, why are Jews fighting Jews?
Let us consider the origins of the Zionist movement. Founded
over a 100 years ago, mostly by secular people who had discarded
their religion but still could not rid themselves of what
they considered the stigma of being Jews in exile. They thought
that our state of exile was due to our own subservient attitude
– ‘the exile mentality’ - and not a Divine
Decree. They wanted to throw off the constraints of exile
establishing a new form of Jewish identity. Not religion based
but land based. This was a typical, emotion driven, secular
nationalistic view, similar to the aspirations of most other
Stateless nations. Their policy had as its centre pin the
aim of setting up a Jewish State (preferably in Palestine),
and they were forging a new kind of Jew. In fact not a Jew
at all, but a Zionist.
Zionism was a complete abandonment of our religious teachings
and faith - in general - and in particular an abandonment
of our approach to our state of exile and our attitude to
the peoples among whom we live.
The practical outcome of Zionism in the form of the State
known as ‘Israel’ is completely alien to Judaism
and the Jewish Faith. The very name “Israel” which
originally meant the Children of Israel i.e. the Jewish People
was usurped by the Zionists. For this reason many orthodox
Jews avoid referring to the Zionist State by the name ’Israel’.
Initially when Zionism reared its ugly head, all the Rabbi’s
in the lands of their exile spoke out in no uncertain terms,
and warned against the dangers of such acts, both in terms
of the heavenly punishment that would follow such action,
as well as the futility of trying to contravene the heavenly
Unfortunately these people who were devoid of any religious
feeling neither cared about lives of their fellow Jews in
the lands of their exile, nor have they shown any human feelings
to their fellow men, having achieved if we can call it an
achievement, their aims in setting up a state, the cost in
life and property was not allowed to stands in their way.
Be they the Jews from the ghettos of hell, who were used as
political ammunition, or be they the Palestinian people in
their hundreds of thousands who were forced to flee from their
homes and livelihood.
How can any sane person support such an existence?
Neturei Karta was set up to combat this unjust state of affairs,
Religious Jews have organised themselves in order to decry
the lie that they have some sympathy or G-d forbid direct
support for this anti G-d state.
Most Orthodox Jews accept the Neturei Karta view, to the extent
that they do not agree in principle to the existence of the
Zionist State and would not ‘shed a tear’ if it
came to an end.
We have problem in that; the Zionists have made themselves
to appear as the representatives and spokespeople of all Jews
thus, with their actions, arousing animosity against the Jews.
Those who harbour this animosity to Zionism are accused of
anti-Semitism. However, what has to be made abundantly clear
is that Zionism is not Judaism. Zionists cannot speak in the
name of Jews. Zionists may have been born as Jews, but to
be a Jew also requires adherence to the Jewish belief and
religion. So what becomes abundantly clear is that opposition
to Zionism and its crimes does not imply hatred of Jews or
‘anti-Semitism’. On the contrary Zionism itself
and its deeds are the biggest threat to Jews and Judaism.
The strife between Arab and Jew in Palestine only began when
the first Zionist pioneers came to Palestine with the express
aim of forming a State over the heads of the indigenous Arab
population. That strife has continued until this very day
and has cost and continues to cost thousands upon thousands
of lives both of Jews and Muslims. The oppression, abuse and
murder, in Palestine is a tragedy not only for the Palestinians
but for the Jewish people as well. And is in fact part of
the dire consequences of which we are warned if we transgress
our religious requirement not to rebel against our exile.
I wish to add that the connection between Muslims and Jews
goes right back into ancient history. Mostly the relationship
was friendly and mutually beneficial. Historically, the situation
frequently was that when Jews were being persecuted in Europe,
they found refuge in the various Muslim countries. Our attitude
to Muslims and Arabs can only be one of friendliness and respect.
I would like to finish with the following words, to the People
of the World, and in particular to our Muslim neighbours,
there is no hatred or animosity between Jew and Muslim or
indeed any G-d fearing people. We wish to live together as
friends and neighbours as we have done mostly over hundreds
even thousands of years in all the Arab countries. It was
only the advent of the Zionists and Zionism which upset this
age old relationship.
We consider the Palestinians as the people with the right
to govern in Palestine.
The Zionist State known as “Israel” is a regime
that has no right to exist. Its continuing existence is the
underlying cause of the strife in Palestine.
We pray for a solution to the terrible and tragic impasse,
we hope there are Nations who see the immorality of the situation
and have the courage to use political and economic pressures
to bring it to a peaceful and just ending.
We pray for an end to bloodshed and an end to the suffering
of all innocent people - Jew and non-Jew alike - worldwide.
We are waiting for the annulment of Zionism and the dismantling
of the Zionist regime, which will bring about an end to the
suffering of the Palestinian people. We would welcome the
possibility of Jews dwelling in peace in the holy land under
the rulership of the Palestinians, entirely in accordance
with the wishes and aspirations of the Palestinian People.
May we soon merit the time when all mankind will be at peace.