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The Struggle for the Soul of Judaism:
Moses Mendelssohn vs. Vladimir Jabotinsky—
An Ecumenical Dialogue, or Fascist Holocaust?

Part 1 — Introduction

Judaism today is wracked by a profound crisis. In Israel, as well as throughout the Diaspora, two visions of Judaism are locked in a bitter struggle: on the one hand, that of the great 18th century genius Moses Mendelssohn, the ecumenical organiser and teacher most responsible for the liberation of the Jews in Europe at the end of the 18th century, and for the emergence of the Weimar Classical period in Germany of Schiller, Goethe, the Humboldt brothers, etc., versus, on the other hand, that of the early 20th century fascist, Vladimir Jabotinsky, whom Israeli founding father David Ben-Gurion called "Vladimir Hitler". Jabotinsky's doctrines of perpetual war and conquest gave rise to the Likud Party in Israel and to the present Hitler-imitating, suicidal Sharon government, and are a perversion of all that Judaism holds sacred.

In his 1999 piece, "On Music, Judaism and Hitler", Lyndon LaRouche wrote about the extraordinary importance of Mendelssohn, not only for Judaism, but for all of modern European civilisation:

"The greatest contributions of the Jew to European civilization, was the movement generated by the work of one of the greatest individual geniuses of modern (extended) European civilization as a whole, Moses Mendelssohn. Mendelssohn was not merely a Jew who contributed to modern civilization; he was a leading, integral part of the late-18th-century revolution, without which there would have been no modern European science, no modern Classical musical or other artistic composition, and without which freedom and the [U.S.] Federal Constitution would not have been possible.

Not only did Moses Mendelssohn, as a German, play a leading role in creating modern Germany and modern European civilization of the 18th century onward; as a German of Orthodox Jewish faith, he, like Martin Luther King in our own time, freed the Jew by freeing the German to become part of an ecumenical system of justice under the supreme rule of nothing but reason itself. In that process, he mobilized from among German Jews, and, by implication, the Yiddish Renaissance of Poland, Ukraine, and Russia, to make a contribution to modern civilization way beyond all proportion to their relative numbers among the populations within which they lived as part."

The decades-long efforts of Jabotinsky and his disciples to sabotage a just Israeli-Palestinian peace are documented in detail in Section 4, "The Crimes of the Fascist Jabotinskyites", a series of articles by LaRouche's collaborators at Executive Intelligence Review magazine, which draw upon archival and other recently-discovered evidence.

Jabotinsky has his sympathisers in Australia. The Australia-Israel Review, for example (which now styles itself "The Review"), was founded by a fanatical Revisionist (as the followers of Jabotinsky were called), Robert Zablud. Former longtime AIR editor Michael Danby eulogised Zablud, whom he called the "organisational genius" behind the AIR, in the 19 September-2 October 1989 AIR, noting that Zablud's vision of Judaism was inspired by "his mentor Zeev Jabotinsky", whom Danby called "a much misunderstood centre-right Zionist ideologue".

In a May 13, 2002 memo to his associates entitled "Affirm the Mendelssohn Defense of the Soul", LaRouche described that great Mendelssohn-Jabotinsky conflict, and its implications for peace in the Middle East, which will be elaborated in the sections which follow:

...Now, the hope for Middle East peace hangs implicitly on the implications of Moses Mendelssohn's legacy. That hope for peace depends, to a crucial degree, upon the increasing number of Israelis opposing the fascist police-state policies of a Sharon and Netanyahu. The latter have, as it is said, "crossed the Rubicon"; that, in a way more than slightly similar to those proposing a North American Command [a new U.S. military command over the domestic U.S., Canada and Mexico — ed.]. (In short, both the Likudniks and the proponents of a kindred U.S. military policy, are in the process of replicating the "SS state" of Hitler-Himmler.) Do the Israeli opponents of the military policies of the Likudniks and the fascist rabble of the predominantly racist U.S. "Christian Zionists" represent a plausible "Jewish principle," or do the Israeli opponents of the Israeli Defense Forces command's carnage? The possibility of implementing a durable peace, even any peace at all, depends upon the proper answer to that question of Israeli legitimacy.

After one has sorted out the carnage of Hitler's efforts to exterminate the legacy of Mendelssohn and the Yiddish Renaissance, the authorship of what has been since called the Shoah, is traced proximately to the existentialist followers of the anti-Semite and syphilitic dionysiac Friedrich Nietzsche, including such as Nazi philosopher Martin Heidegger and the degenerate Jews of Heidegger's cronies among the Frankfurt School circles of Theodor Adorno and Hannah Arendt. (An angry Jew might erupt with the remark against all those heathen existentialists: "Be like Nietzsche: die of syphilis!")

The crucial benchmark from with which to begin mapping the task before us, is that a fascist Jew, such as Jabotinsky, is like any other fascist, such as Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, or the Brzezinski-Huntington crew. He is only accidentally a Jew, and essentially a fascist like Hitler, as the worst of Israel's Likudniks are demonstrating that currently. Indeed, such Likudniks are carrying on Hitler's work, in effect, by turning their Jewish recruits into fascists; soon, were they successful, there would be no real Jews left.

Thus, the hope of a durable peace hangs upon an ecumenical solidarity among Christians, Muslims, and those Jews who accept the principle of Genesis 1: that men and women are each made equally in the image of the Creator, set apart from, and above the beasts, to exert the Creator's dominion in the universe about us. Historically, there is no more relevant exponent of such an ecumenical basis than Lessing's real-life "Nathan der Weise" ("Nathan the Wise"), his friend and collaborator, Moses Mendelssohn.

However, the river of blood which has flowed between Israeli and Arab for the greater part of a century, will not be staunched with a mere literal doctrine. There must be a deeper, actually cognitive insight of the type expressed by Mendelssohn's Phaedon. This is, first and foremost, my personal responsibility, since I am the only leading political figure on the world-scene presently, who efficiently represents the same Platonic standpoint from which the work of Leibniz, Kaestner, Lessing, and Moses Mendelssohn flowed.

We have recently emerged from a century in European civilization, whose characteristic has been that growing philosophical mediocrity, that low-life pragmatism and single-issuism... The world has few left, who could be described as "philosophers" without an epidemic of blushing throughout the halls of a witting academia. I need make no broad claims, other than being virtually "the last of the Mohicans" inhabiting a land where real philosophical minds once lived.

Treaties, programs, and doctrines will not provide a durable basis for Middle East peace. Such attempts have already failed all too often. There must be an elementary, deep-going philosophical basis for a peace; nothing superficial can staunch the decades' rising tide of blood. Mendelssohn typifies that basis: partly because he is a true ecumenical figure, an ecumenical Orthodox Jew to the time of his death. More important: he understands the meaning of the soul, as I do. Only when we put forward the concept of the cognitive nature of the immortal soul, as Mendelssohn speaks to Plato, does history make moral sense. Only when we attempt to balance the account of our dead from our past, with our obligation to the future to come after our mortal existence, can we define that kind of quality of immortal self-interest embodied in our momentary, mortal selves, which is needed to bring forth a great instrument of peace, something akin today, to the 1648 Treaty of Westphalia. The Jew must find his soul's place in a peace of the Middle East, as the existence of Germany today depends still upon the deep principle adopted as the first article of agreement to the Treaty of Westphalia.

The nub of the matter is a clear, cognitive comprehension of the immortal historic interest of a brief mortal existence.

We come, born to the present, as a visiting traveller in time. We must come as an angel, to bring some good, a good which may help to heal the wounds of the past, console the living, and bring forth progress to a better future. We come, briefly, to dwell thus in past, present, and future, all at once. In that respect we are immortal, yet, the paradox is, that we can act so only through the medium of our mortality.

Yet, if we bring the discovery of what are truly discovered, or rediscovered universal physical principles, and if we cause those to be shared and transmitted, several wonderful, immortal consequences are gained. Such ideas not only change the present and future; they also fulfill the implicit hopes of those from the past, who may have suffered horribly in the course of their struggle to make the present possible, and thus change the outcome of their having lived. Thus, we act with the determination, that nothing good which occurs in the simultaneity of eternity shall ever be wasted. Then, perhaps, there will come a time, in which we shall understand more fully what time itself was all about.

While you are mastering the deeper implications of Gauss's discoveries from the period leading to the publication of his Disquisitiones1, read the relevant work of both Plato and Moses Mendelssohn from that vantage-point in cognitive practice. With that in view, remember that Moses Mendelssohn did more than anyone to free the Jew of Austria and Germany to become a citizen of his nation; today, his work is a crucial selection of rallying point to rally Israel and Arabs alike for an urgently needed escape from a Likudnik existentialists' Hell. Put the Phaedon on the table, and say, ever so simply, to Israeli and Arab like: Let there be perpetual peace and fraternity between us.

The combined will and power of the U.S.A. and other nations could stop the war; but only ecumenical bonds can secure the peace.

1. See Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr., "Dialogue on the Fundamentals of Sound Policy," EIR, May 3, 2002; Bruce Director, "Fundamental Theorem: Gauss's Declaration of Independence," EIR, April 12, 2002, and "Bringing the Invisible to the Surface," EIR, May 3, 2002.

Next: Moses Mendelssohn: A Beautiful Soul

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