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Daily Digest of Public Opinion on Jewish Matters

March 2, 1926
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[The purpose of the Digest is informative: Preference is given to papers not generally accessible to our readers. Quotation does not indicate approval Editor.]

The contention that there is, among others, a strain of Nordic and Negro blood , in the Jews, is put forth by the author of the Nordic theory, Lothrop Stoddard, in an article on “The Pedigree of the Jews.” which appears in the March number of the “Forum.”

Dr. Stoddard attempts to prove that the present-day Jews are not really descendants of the ancient Hebrews, owing to intermarriage with other races. There were, he asserts, “two primal elements in Jewry’s racial make-up : an ancient cross between Semitic and Hittite-Amenoid stocks.” The Semitic, he says, was the original root. He then makes the statement that during their sojourn in Egypt the Jews absorbed Negro blood.

“A Negroid strain.” he writes, “undoubtedly exists in Jewry; to it the frizzy or woolly hair, thick lips, and prognathous jaws appearing in many Jewish individuals are probably due. Although at that time the population of Egypt was predominantly Hamitic, the trickle of Negro blood, which has since so strongly modified both Egypt and the adjacent Asiatic regions, had already begun. It is probable, however, that this first Negroid infusion was less important than the subsequent infusions which appear to have taken place, rather in outlying sections of Jewry than in the central nuclens in Palestine.”

The infusion of Nordic blood took place on the return to Palestine, Dr. Stoddard contends, basing his belief partly on the assumption that David was the son of an Amoritish mother and that the description of him in the Bible as “admoni” means that he was “blood.”

“When the Jews returned to Palestine.” we read, “they found it inhabited by a medley of tribes, mostly of Semitic and Armenold origin to be sure, but also partly of Nordic and Mediterranean blood. The Amorites, those giant ‘Sons of Anak,’ were patently Nordics, and David, the son of an Amoritish mother and described as blond, represents the infusion of Nordic blood into Jewry which then took place.”

Further, we are told that in Babylinian Captivity only a remuant ### of Jews retained its Jewish self-consciousness and it was this remnant which was “more Semitic and less Armenoid,” that returned to Palestine under Ezra and Nehemiah. With their return, the writer declares, began the period of Jewish “racial self-consciousness.”

“Those Jews who headed the call of Nehemiah and Ezra to return to Palestine and rebuild the Holy City were in very truth, a ‘chosen remnant,’ the most realous and patriotic of the Jewish folk. Warned by the fate of the ‘Lost’ Ten Tribes, they resolved at all costs to preserve their identity as the ‘Chosen People,’ and they realized that the best way to do this was to keep themselves aloof from their neighbors, not only in their faith and customs but also in their blood. Of course, these principles had been concerned long before, but they had been lazily observed. Now, however, under the rigorous discipline of a ruling priestly class. Jewry displayed a cohesion and self-consciousness never before ###. For the next five centuries down to the great dispersion under the Romans, intermarriage with foreigners greatly lessened, inbreeding was the rule, and consequently the tendency was toward the formation of a stable Jewish type.”

Dr. Stoddard says the Semitic type “must have almost entirely disappeared” somewhere between the 8th centuries and divides Jewry into two groups, Sephardic Jews of the West and Ashkenazic Jews of the East, taking no cognizance of the German Jews.

“The Sephardim,” he says, “have for the past thousand years been breeding away from the old Armenoid toward the long-headed Semitic and Mediterranean racial types. The Ashkenazim, on the contrary, have not only been breeding away from the Semitic toward the Armenoid typed, but have also taken up a great amount of Central Asian and Mongoloid blood which was unknown to ancient Jewry and which has never flowed in Sephardim’s veins.”

The conclusion to which Dr. Stoddard arrives on the basis of his theories is this:

“Such, in brief, is the surprisingly complex pedigree of Judah. It effectively disposes of the fiction that the modern Jew is the true scion of the ancient Hebrew. The proportion of genuine Hebrew blood today should be very small even among the Sephardim, while among the Ashkenazim it must be infinitesimal.

“Nevertheless, the modern Jew is still very much a Jew. In fact, he is probably more self-consciously ‘ Jewish’ than was the Jew of 1000 B. C. And this applies alike to Ashkenazim and to Sephardim. However much they may differ, they yet possess a common ‘ Jewishness,’ instinctively recognizable both by themselves and by the rest of the world.

“How explain this seeming paradox ? It is due unquestionably to the biological effects produced reflexively by the Jewish doctrine of the Chosen People. Believing themselves to be a race, the Jews have constantly tended to create one ! This is not a mere juggling of words ; it is scientific fact.”

The “Jewish Morning Journal” pointed out in its issue of Feb. 14 that Dr. Stoddard’s arguments are based on ignorance and wrong facts.

“At one point.” says the paper, “Dr. Stoddard’s ignorance is so obvious that anyone who is even slightly posted on the divisions among the Jews can notice it. The Western Jew is called by him a Sephardi and the Eastern Jew an Ashkenazi. We wonder what he did with the German Jews, did he transform them into Hittite Khazar Ar menoid Jews of the East or into the Semitic-Spanish Jews of the West ### Such a ‘denial’ of the existence of the German Jews amuses us.

Regarding Dr. Stoddard’s remarks about David and Nordic blood in the Jews, the paper, observes:

“We concede that he is not obliged to know the Talmudic tradition that David’s mother was the daughter of a well known Jewish family, but it is a ridiculous error to believe that ‘admoni’ means ‘blond.’ The Bible gives the same description of Essau, and according to Stoddard’s theory it would mean that only Jacob was a Semite, while his twin brother was a Nordic!

“Equally far from the truth, or opposed to the truth,” the paper continues, “is his opinion on the Jews who returned from Babylon to Palestine. Mr. Stoddard knows that the Talmud embodies the Jewish spirit, but he does not know that this sure source of Jewish traditions and interpretation of Jewish historical facts is very definite on this point, declaring that the real aristocrats, the purest families among the Jews, remained in Babylon and those who returned were ” Assarah Yochssin,” ten groups with ten different pedigree records some of whose origin was not established. (Mishna Kiddishin. 4-1). This was so well known in Talmudic times, seven-eight hundred years after Eara, that the Babylonian Jews refused to inter-marry with the sons of Palestine.

“A large part of those Jews of Babylonia and neighboring countries later migrated to the land of the Khanars and still later from there to the present Russia and Poland. That was the smaller stream from the East which came first into the future Russian empire and was afterwards swallowed by the much larger masses which came from the West, that is, from Germany and Central Europe. According to Dr. Stoddard’s scientific researches’ those German Sephardim broght our present mother tongue (Yiddish) to the “Hittite-Khazars’ of Eastern Europe.”

Comment on Dr. Stoddard’s article was also made by the “Jewish Daily News,” in its English section. Says the paper :

“Stoddard is at great pains to show that Jews are not in reality Jews at all, but a mixture of everything, and that the Jewish group was in reality a forced product. Stoddard’s arguments are garbed in semi-scientific terms which lend them a plausibility that may tend to convince the reader of their correctness. Other articles will follow and so we shall be once more in the thick of a Jewish discussion. The intent of all these articles is not a wholesome one and we repeat that we wished that Jews were left alone, for a little while at least.”

Neither the Hung###m government ### any members of the Na### Assembly were g### of prosessing those imp#### in the great ###### charged with investigating the ###, discovery of which recently ### the arrest of friane l### officials of the governmental ### and other. In Associated Press ### from ### says.

Fremder ### and the members of his Cabi### have come ### in their power to bring the gui### to ### the commission ### and the government’s political resp###st### is in ### the ### asks ### to ### the ### work ended.

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