…by Jonas E. Alexis
The recent conflict between Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner reminds me of the conflict between Jewish intellectuals and German scholars in nineteenth-century Germany. A little historical background.
During the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century—most specifically during 1870 and 1914—a number of German intellectuals such as Heinrich von Treitschke developed the idea that Jews had to either be on board or leave the country. Treitschke was a historian and was probably aware of the fact Jewish merchants always ended up cheating the Goyim, most specifically in Poland. Heinreich Graetz, the father of modern Jewish historiography, had this to say of Jewish merchants in Poland in the 1600s:
“A love of twisting, distorting, ingenious quibbling, and a foregone antipathy to what did not lie within their field of vision, constituted the character of the Polish Jews. Pride in their knowledge of the Talmud and a spirit of dogmatism attached even to the best rabbis, and undermined their moral sense…Integrity and right-mindedness they had lost as completely as simplicity and the sense of truth.
“The vulgar acquired the quibbling method of the schools, and employed it to outwit the less cunning. They found pleasure and a sort of triumphant delight in deception and cheating against members of their own race; cunning could not well be employed, because they were sharp-witted; but the non-Jewish world with which they came into contact experienced to its disadvantage the superiority of the Talmudical spirit of the Polish Jews.”
Treitschke saw assimilation as a sort of modus vivendi that would bring peace and harmony between German Jews and Gentiles.
What moved Treitschke to an even more defensive position was his observation that many German Jewish intellectuals and historians viewed themselves as superior to the Germans, such as Heinrich Graetz and Moses Hess. “Graetz had written much that was stunningly offensive to the German sensibilities of the time and that would have offended even more self-confident peoples.”
When Graetz wrote a letter to his friend Moses Hess, saying Christianity is a “religion of death,” Hess responded by saying that people like himself need to find pleasure in “scourging Germans.”
In the same letter, Graetz likewise declared, “I am looking forward with pleasure to flogging the Germans and their leaders—Schleiermacher, Fichte, and the whole wretched Romantic school.” Both Graetz and Hess demonstrated throughout their writings a sense of Jewish racial superiority, and both were cognizant that this Jewish racial superiority was in conflict with German culture and tradition.
Hess, who worked with Karl Marx, declared that “race struggle is primary, the class struggle secondary.” Graetz again wrote to Hess saying that “we must above all work together to shatter Christianity.” According to Albert S. Lindemann of the University of California, this form of “Jewish racism” find its ideological disputation in the doctrine of the “tribalistic-nationalistic elements within Judaism…”
It was inevitable, therefore, that Graetz’s and Hess’s racial worldviews would conflict with German intellectuals like Treitschke, and this ideology could be found across Europe. Lindemann writes,
“The French-Jewish man of letters Julien Benda reported that among his Jewish acquaintances at the end of the century ‘were certain magnates, financiers rather than literary men, with whom the belief in the superiority of their race and in the natural subjection of those who did not belong to it, was visibly sovereign. Similarly, a number of Jewish politicians on the left in France harbored a sense of their special merit or destiny as Jews to be political leaders, what they consider their ‘right to rule.’”
Lindemann concedes that not only was Treitschke’s anger against people like Graetz drawn from the notion that Jewish intellectuals saw themselves as superior to the Germans, but that they put down German and European traditions.
Some, like Theodor Mommsen, saw that Graetz’s work was of Talmudic extraction; for this reason Graetz’s work was also attacked by Jewish historians. Lindemann notes that “there is little question that the sense of Jewish superiority [is] expressed” in Graetz’s works, works that were being read by German-Jewish individuals. Treitschke presents the history of Germany “as generous in spirit, especially in its treatment of the relationships of Jews and non-Jews, their relative merits and defects.”
It was inevitable, therefore, that Treitschke and Graetz would find themselves in a struggle for the soul of German history and tradition. Graetz believed that European civilization suffered from a “morally and physically sick” identity, which angered Treitschke and others. Jewish philosopher Hermann Cohen talked about Graetz’s “perverse, emotional judgments,” and Jewish liberals such as Ludwig Bamberger called Graetz a “zealot and fanatic.”
What is important here is that Treitschke saw that if one of the most Jewish representatives was presenting German history in a negative light, then there were at least some differences between Jewish history and mores and German/European history. What probably pushed Treitschke to the edge was that Graetz despised Jewish assimilation and in the process “rejected Reform Judaism, which Treitschke favored.”
Treitschke, while not a Christian, thought that Christianity was not a threat to the European culture; Graetz sought to “shatter” it. Lindeman therefore noted that “there was some substance to Treitschke’s charges” against Graetz.
Moreover, while many Jews saw that Treitschke made some solid points, “They repeatedly expressed concern as to just how much more of their sense of Jewishness would have to be abandoned to satisfy people like Treitshke.”
The Graetz-Treitschke conflict happened years before Nazism took hold, but these are some of the conflicts that set the stage for the Third Reich. Lindemann notes that “it was a problem that would especially plague Gentile-Jewish relations in the following generation, and not only in Germany or among German speakers; it was central to the modern Jewish experience.”
This conflict did not die out in Germany. It has jumped around over the past few decades in many different forms with different ideological language. The conflict has come back with a vengeance, most recently in the White House. The two contenders are Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner.
Bannon has actually called Kushner a “cuck” and a “globalist.” One administration official declared, “[Steve] recently vented to us about Jared being a ‘globalist’ and a ‘cuck’…He actually said ‘cuck,’ as in ‘cuckservative.’ There’s a big fight [going on]. It’s all about policy. There’s tension [between them] on trade, health care, immigration, taxes, [terrorism]—you name it.”
Kushner, the senior official declared, is “continuing to bring in Zeke Emanuel to discuss health care options.” Zeke is the brother of Rahm Emanuel.
Bannon, the senior official added, “has a very specific vision for what he believes, and what he shares [ideologically] with Trump. And he has for a long time now seen [Jared] as a major obstacle to achieving that.”
Bannon was removed from his post during the same time that the US attacked Syria. “The official also said that the removal had been planned for a while and that it was ‘in the works from the day’ Bannon met National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster.” The Daily Beast itself admits:
“It’s clear that Kushner has been expanding his reach and level of influence in Trump’s core circle of advisers, and that the two men are essentially working against one another as they attempt to keep the president’s ear and affections.”
Bannon was and probably still is a puppet of the Israeli regime. In fact, he worked with Netanyahu to deconstruct John Kerry’s constructive criticism of the Israeli settlements. Kushner also defended Bannon when bigotry charges were being leveled against him.
Bannon, for his part, reciprocated and called Kushner “a brother.” He said: “If you’re in a foxhole with him, and fighting with him, you’re a brother, and he will defend you nonstop.” Kushner responded: “All I know about Steve is my experience working with him. He’s an incredible Zionist and loves Israel.”
The two brothers from different mothers are now locked in a power struggle. Bannon, who once called himself the “Thomas Cromwell in the court of the Tudors,” is absent from the Trump administration. One associate of Trump declared that Kushner has been coaching Trump on foreign policy as well. The associate said:
“He was elected as a non-interventionist. It’s Jared teaming up with the generals: ‘You’ve got to look tough, Mr President.’ If it expands to a full ground war then, Jesus, we just elected George W Bush for another term.”
One former Trump campaign aide declared: “As we get further away from Inauguration Day, it is very obvious that no one cares what happens to the people who worked for the campaign or who have loyalty to the president. The swamp is winning the battle. And longtime campaign staffers are proving to be the first casualties.”
If Trump is able to dump campaign staffers and replace them with people like Kushner and companies like Goldman Sachs, then one can say with almost certainty that Trump’s dream of “America First” is over. There is certainly no way that Kushner and Netanyahu are going to allow Trump to stop perpetual wars in the Middle East.
Civilta Cattolica declared in the 1890s—a little over hundred years after the French Revolution—that any country that rejects the moral and political order will end up being ruled by Jewish revolutionary movements. The Trump administration is a classic example of that. The administration is now going against everything they said they were going to do during the presidential campaign. If Trump continues to shoot himself in the toes, one can say that he will be a one-term president. He is just defending Israeli assassins.
 Heinrich Graetz, History of the Jews, Vol. V (Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society of America, 1894), 4-6.
 Albert Lindemann, Esau’s Tears: Anti-Semitism and the Rise of the Jews (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), 141.
 Ibid., 91.
 Ibid., 141.
 Cited in ibid., 91.
 Ibid., 141-143.
 Ibid., 165.
 Ibid., 139-140.
 Ibid., 140.
 Ibid., 141.
 Ibid., 142.
 Ibid., 142.
 Quoted in Asawin Suesaeng, “Steve Bannon Calls Jared Kushner a ‘Cuck’ and ‘Globalist’ Behind His Back,” Daily Beast, April 7, 2017.
 See Emily Jane Fox, “Inside the Jared Kushner-Steve Bannon Bromance,” Vanity Fair, January 9, 2017.
 Quoted in David Smith, “Bannon, Kushner and Priebus: rivals for power at the heart of Trump’s team,” Guardian, November 19, 2016.
 David Smith, “Bannon and Kushner locked in White House ‘power struggle,’” Guardian, April 8, 2017.
 Alex Isenstadt and Andrew Restuccia, “Civil war rages throughout Trump administration,” Politico, April 6, 2017.
 For a historical study on this, see E. Michael Jones, Barren Metal: A History of Capitalism as the Conflict Between Labor and Usury (South Bend: Fidelity Press, 2014), 1169-1200.
 For a recent report on Trump’s “consistent inconsistencies,” see “’Broken by US power machine’: Trump’s 100 days prove his maverick image was fake,” Russia Today, April 29, 2017.
Jonas E. Alexis has degrees in mathematics and philosophy. He studied education at the graduate level. His main interests include U.S. foreign policy, the history of the Israel/Palestine conflict, and the history of ideas. He is the author of the book, Kevin MacDonald’s Metaphysical Failure: A Philosophical, Historical, and Moral Critique of Evolutionary Psychology, Sociobiology, and Identity Politics. He teaches mathematics in South Korea.