The Invention of the Jewish People

myth-jewish-peopleA historical tour de force, the amazing book “The Invention of the Jewish People” offers a groundbreaking account of Jewish and Israeli history.

Exploding the myth that there was a forced Jewish exile in the first century at the hands of the Romans, Israeli historian Shlomo Sand argues that most modern Jews descend from converts, whose native lands were scattered across the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

In this iconoclastic work, which spent nineteen weeks on the Israeli bestseller list and won the coveted Aujourd’hui Award in France, Sand provides the intellectual foundations for a new vision of Israel’s future.

A Confused Nation Pretending to be a Wandering People

Although he never mentions the “two-state solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, in “The Invention of the Jewish People” Israeli historian Shlomo Sand implicitly rejects it in favor of what has come to be called the “one-state solution”:

“The ideal project for solving the century-long conflict…would be the creation of a democratic bi-national state between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River.” (p. 311)


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Sand, however, is deeply pessimistic concerning the likelihood of any solution being reached at all. Implicitly he takes the position that the possibility of peace rests not so much on the Palestinians, or on the Arabs in general, as on the Israeli Jews themselves.

They must somehow come to understand that the Israeli policy of apartheid (Sand’s term, p. 309), and the false notion that Israel can be a “Jewish state” and yet a democracy at the same time, doom the chances of peace. But is it possible that the Israelis will ever come to believe that they must share the land on an equal basis with the Palestinian non-Jews?

Sand identifies two major factors – two associated myths — which stand in the way. These have served the Zionist cause well but they are historically false: the myth of the Jewish “people” and the myth of the “exile” of this people from the land of Israel.

If essentially there is no Jewish people — rather only a Jewish religion; and if the Jewish diaspora was driven not by forced exile — rather by the impulse to proselytize, then the Zionist-sponsored “return” of the Jewish “people” to the land of Israel in the mid twentieth century has lost its entire theoretical framework.

Sand is a scholar and in style the book is a scholarly work. The general reader may be put off at first. I suggest the book may be more approachable if you begin by reading Chapter 2, “Myth history: In the Beginning God Created the People”.

The first chapter “Making Nations” is a bit difficult to get through, and might be dispensed with. The Introduction contains four personal histories whose relevance is at first obscure. I suggest you read the Introduction after you finish the rest of the book, not before. For only then is the point of these personal stories, which are quite moving, readily understood.

According to Sand Zionism’s traditional discrimination against non-Jews (“gentiles”) has rested upon and required the false notion that Jews constitute a distinct biologically-grounded race. This idea originated and first thrived amidst the nineteenth century obsession with “nations”.

Political Zionism grew up in the atmosphere of that obsession. But the history of Judaism undercuts it. In three cases in particular Sand demonstrates that gentile populations found the religion attractive enough to adopt it en masse.

Thus there is no racial or biological distinction between Jews and gentiles. These are the case of the Himyarites in what is now Yemen, the Berbers in northwest Africa and the Khazars who lived in what is now southern Russia. Zionist historians, for whom Sand has special scorn, have downplayed or ignored the facts surrounding this history.

If proselytizing Jews has spread Judaism to gentile populations, it could still be true that the movement of Jews into gentile lands in the first place was due to their having been expelled long ago from the land of Israel.

According to traditional Jewish thinking, this expulsion happened after the Roman emperor Titus destroyed the Jewish temple in Jerusalem in the year 70AD – or, perhaps it was after 135AD when the Bar Kochba revolt was put down by the Romans. Or again, perhaps the forced exile of the Jews occurred in the 7th century after the Muslims took ownership of Palestine. In fact the historical record contains no evidence of any forced exile of Jews from Palestine – ever — according to Sand.

He believes that a significant portion of the Arab population in Palestine is probably descended from early Jewish inhabitants of that land – who were never expelled but who were eventually converted to Christianity or to Islam in later centuries. Sand points out that some of the early Zionists, including Ben-Gurion himself, believed the same thing (until it eventually became inconvenient for them to do so.)

Unsurprisingly “The Invention of the Jewish People” has aroused controversy well before its publication in English translation. That will only increase now. The fact that it is the work of an Israeli academic will make it so much harder for Zionists in America to ridicule or ignore it.

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Shlomo Sand studied history at the University of Tel Aviv and at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales, in Paris. He currently teaches contemporary history at the University of Tel Aviv. His books include The Invention of the Jewish People, On the Nation and the Jewish People, L’Illusion du politique: Georges Sorel et le débat intellectuel 1900, Georges Sorel en son temps, Le XXe siècle à l’écran and Les Mots et la terre: les intellectuels en Israël.


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21 Responses to "The Invention of the Jewish People"

  1. jmreeves  November 16, 2013 at 1:30 am

    I have just one question:
    Who The Hell (not me) gives a sideways rats ass who your damn daddy was!
    Back in the day they used to transfer property and whole dynasties
    By Marriage
    (and you thought it was complicated just hooking up)
    We have since reached a point where we sell the property
    (and use the proceeds to manipulate our siblings.
    Seriously.. This Crap is a Throwback to Feudal Lords.
    (one of several reasons I am not in favor of such)
    How these chumps ever tricked you into thinking God was out to get you
    (and on Their Side??

    I was born onto two, chances you were also,
    May I Respectfully Suggest that you contact the God of your choice
    (without need or benefit re these rent seeking knaves!w23`
    We Do Not Require Their Presence, (speaking only for Me Of Course!
    Let alone their foolish ways!


  2. omop  November 9, 2013 at 1:49 pm

    According to a news item on a European website the American Jews get an opportunity to commit to either being a Jewish American or a Jewish Israeli. As quoted the news item states:- “The Israeli American Council recently commissioned the distribution of leaflets to thousands of Jewish Americans asking them where their allegiance would lie in the event of a real crisis between the U.S. and Israel.”

    “The leaflet was originally endorsed by representatives of Israel’s foreign ministry.”

    • ayelyahbenjamin  November 10, 2013 at 1:23 pm

      “The leaflet was originally endorsed by representatives of Israel’s Foreign Ministry.
      Within days, following the report of the story in the Israeli press, Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu hastily directed the ministry to stop backing the questionnaire, which was commissioned by the Israeli American Council, a private nonprofit group established in Los Angeles in 2007. In September, the IAC announced plans to expand by establishing new branches throughout the United States. The survey is seen as part of this process.
      According to the IAC, this expansion is to be sponsored by Vegas casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson….”

  3. Kevin Moore  November 9, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    “Jews” of today are Canaanites descended from Ham – not Shem.
    Palestine — Shems Allotment — Taken by Force by Canaan, a Son of Shems’ Brother, Ham

    “But whereas Ham, Cush and Mitaraim took possession of the land fallen to them by lot, Canaan took with violence, possession of the land he coveted, along the sea-shore. His brothers remonstrated with him, and told him he would be accursed for having taken a lot that belonged to Shem and had not fallen to him. But he would not hearken to them; and dwelt in the land from Hamath to Egypt.” [Ibid. pp.44, 45.]

    For greater detail see:- “The Book of Jubilees.” Rev George H. Schodde’s translation from the Ethiopic —- Ch.8…… “This portion came by lot for Shem and his sons that, they should possess it for ever unto his generations for evermore.”

    A Semite is anyone who has descended from Shem, one of Noahs three sons. Shem is the ancestor of Abram/Abraham. Judah is a descendent of Shem and is thus a descendent of “Abram” to whom promises were made [Genesis 15:18-20] and Shems’ seeds include the other tribes of Israel and the Ishmaelites—-the Arabs. Genesis 17:7-8. Abram later became Abraham [Genesis 17:5-6] ——– “But the promises were spoken to Abraham and to his Seed — it does not say, And to seeds, as of many, but as of one, “And to thy Seed”, which is Christ” Galatians 3:16., Genesis Ch.17., 21:12

  4. potai  November 9, 2013 at 10:38 am

    In freemasonry, the idea of “Widow’s Son” is important in regard to bloodlines. One Widow’s Son is Solomon himself, an important step in the (grail) bloodine, a genealogical stream that is traced through Solomon’s mother, Bathsheba, a Hittite widow before marriage to David. The secret (to them) is how the Canaanite bloodline was merged with the bloodline of Seth to become one and the same, but the idea of Widow’s Son also goes back to Cain and Enki the Summerian ‘God’. The bigger secret is perhaps missed by all of the so-called holy grail lineages is that belief in a physical genealogical ‘birthright’, so to speak, is missing the point of the true bloodline, philosophically which is about ones being/personality rather than the body. In the Mor-mon church, there is a lot of emphasis on these so-called royal bloodlines which is (though unknown to the rank-and-file) why there is such an emphasis on genealogy and why polygamy was (and is) undertaken as a religious practice (ie. the real reason for polygamy is to spread the royal genes). JS is even reported to have married other men’s wives while the other husband was present at the ceremony. What!? say most folks “Who would stand by while their wife married someone else?” Well, it makes more sense when one understands the importance of bloodlines and producing the (so called) children of God. Your wife would get to bear the royal blood.

    • john ccarleton  November 9, 2013 at 1:14 pm

      Yeah, Bathsheba was a widow after King David knocked her up and then had her husband killed to cover his tracks.

  5. Chris Natias  November 9, 2013 at 8:38 am

    Sand is professor of European History at Tel Aviv University and an expert at uncovering and interpreting documents produced during any epic historical event. When he searched for documents and artifacts authenticating the First Century Jewish Diaspora out of Palestine/Judea, he found there is not one document, not one book, not one piece of papyrus or carved wood or stone authenticating the movement of hundreds of thousands of people, including literate scribes and priests, out of Judea. Not one. Sand could only conclude the Diaspora is a religious myth. Judaism spread by conversion. Hence Zionism is a fraud and Israel is a fraud. The following is the preamble to Israel’s Declaration of Statehood: ” After being forcibly exiled from their land, the people kept faith with it throughout their Dispersion and never ceased to pray and hope for their return to it and for the restoration in it of their political freedom.”

    • Chris Natias  November 9, 2013 at 8:43 am

      The greatest irony of the entire Israel/Palestine tragedy is the Palestinian Muslims and Christians are the closest living biological descendants of the ancient Judahites and Israelites and Hebrews. They converted to Christianity and later most to Islam. The descendants of the Judahites are being ethnically cleansed today mainly by descendants of Khazar coverts and North African Berber converts to Judaism.

  6. DaveE  November 9, 2013 at 8:10 am

    This m\is a great book, I recommend it to everyone. I also appreciate this article’s advive to skip the first chapter or maybe two to get to the good stuff……. I almost lost interest trying to get through the beginning background information.

    Sand does a GREAT job of exploring the academic and sociological origins of “the Jews” myth, starting with Josephus and leading into the zionist movement. It’s interesting to note that in the thousand years in between, no one seems to have noticed “the Jews” much! But anyway, this makes more sense if you read it last, like the author (of this article) suggests.

    EVERYONE who is concerned with the survival of the planet, including “the Jews” should read this book. It caused an earthquake in Israel, I’ve heard and rightly so.

    It’s like multiplying by zero…… the whole problem goes away. Israel’s “right to exist” is exposed for the scam that it is.

  7. ApologistAmy  November 8, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    Khazars my arse. These seeds of satan are quite literally what the Son of Man called “sons of their father, the devil”.

  8. franktalk  November 8, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    Hilarious, how the truth will set you free. The myths were stolen from the the Iraqis and the Persians and repeated for thousands of years,, then along comes science, Stichen, and an internet and the sharing of information. . . no more jews genetically after DNA, just another religion. . . . . Love it! Thanks posting this story.

  9. Preston James, Ph.D  November 8, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    Bingo, this timely excellent article is a real connecting of the dots. Now that we know that the Palestinians carry ancient Hebrew Blood and 80-90% of Israeli Judaics do not, but are mere converts from Khazaria and other European places, its time to start calling the Israelis the true anti-Semites, since the Palestinians are Semites and Israelis are not. This is a sick, twisted major deception used to create a racially paranoid subculture on the basis of a complete lie and its time the world learns of this. Shout it from the rooftops! Once against VT makes history.

  10. john ccarleton  November 8, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    He seems to be very honest about his thoughts. Basically his conclusions are the same ones that I have come to after studying the Jewish myth. Where we differ is I too support the one state concept, but my one state concept does not include the Jews remaining in Palestine.

  11. Mike Kay  November 8, 2013 at 5:49 pm

    Yes, well the narrative of the jews hearkens back to the root of the problem-how does humanity define itself? And more what is Humanity, and what is that self concept?
    What is missing here is the reality that even if the jews were a consistent ethnic identity, rather than a collection of ethnicities, the justification for their homeland carries no more weight. Unless that is, one believes differently. Is this proof of the belief that because one comes from a certain genetic stock, one has certain privileges associated to that stock? And if this is so, then isn’t humanity by definition inherently racist?
    Further, the abrahamic creeds, with their redeemer complex as the central tenet of their ideology, have consistently supported an us vs. them perception of reality. Judaism is the core of the redeemer complex, and the seed for both christianity and islam. What do we see in judaism other than a cult of exceptionalism given voice through the “chosen people”?
    Lets all remember that the “sacred” history of jews, like that of christians and muslims, is a fantasy. When a people intentionally adopt erroneous beliefs, and demand that all accept their veracity, what barrier exists to prevent other damaging erroneous beliefs from becoming standard operating lexicons?
    The current crisis in Palestine is in many ways a microcosm of everything that challenges humanity today, from the wish for an exceptional, exalted state, to the brutal and reckless reality.

  12. Charlotte NC Bill  November 8, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    Share? We’re cattle…how can you expect them to share anything with cattle? Everything the cattle has belongs to them…They’ll be no solution..only a tragic end…and since their Jews they’ll make as much of us share in their tragedy as possible…the darlings have even given it a name: the Sampson Option..

  13. Charlotte NC Bill  November 8, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    They’re Khazars and they know it…That partially explains the insane hatred for the Russian people…The Rothschild financial satellites ( Warburg, Jacob schiff, etc ) financed the Judeo-bolshevik takeover, plunder and torture of Russia…Just look at ariel sharon…that’s like a ugly Khazar prototype image…eeesh..The Czar didn’t fully appreciate how evil their leaders are/were…after they murdered Czar alexander II he should have realized….should have declared all of Europe to be “beyond the pale”..should’ve used the Russian Navy to take them to Madagascar…

    • paschn  November 9, 2013 at 2:55 pm

      exactly. The problems did start until they began believing all the evil/filth in their “holy” book, the Talmud. Once that happened, goodbye humanity, hello evil. Coming soon to yet another “Russia” near you. Spelled T-H-E W-E-S-T. As badly as we’re soiled with delusionals believing they’re “poor” and “oppressed” and the massive number of the Neo-Judas class in our military/cops/government? I’m afraid this one’s going to pale even what they did in Russia, Germany, Armenia eastern Europe etc. Luck to you all, we’re gonna need it.

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