Answers to Quora Questions by Yair Davidiy
Picture of General Sir John Monash, the Jewish commander of British and Australian forces at the Battle of Amiens and the one who defeated Germany in World War-1.
In 1898 the Kaiser had visited Jerusalem. Theodor Herzl, the Jewish-Austrian journalist and leader of the Zionist Movement, went to meet him. Herzl tried to interest Wilhelm in supporting Zionism. The Kaiser prevaricated.
When Herzl wooed the emperor of Germany
By AVIVA AND SHMUEL BAR-AM, 23 July 2016
German Zionists had hoped that Germany would be the one to help answer Zionist aspirations. The possibility must have been considered at some level. The Jews in Germany admired German culture and identified as Germans. My own mother had family members in Germany who were to be killed by Germany for being Jewish. The attitude of anti-Semites in Europe towards Zionism before 1917 is reported to have been favorable. They were said to have opined:
"Let all the Jews go to Palestine and when they are all in one place we can kill the lot of them."
Towards the end of his life in 1904 Herzl predicted that the answer would come from Britain. Other Zionist leaders continued to hope that Germany or the Ottoman Turks would have a change of heart. Germany on the whole was always anti-Jewish but many Jews still put their hopes in her. Here and there this was justified. It was due to German intervention in 1917 that the Jews in Palestine (which was then ruled by Ottoman Turkey) were not massacred just like the Armenians in Turkey had been. In December 1917 the British and Australians and others liberated Jerusalem. A month previously the Balfour Declaration had been issued. This called for a Jewish Homeland in Palestine.
How did the Germans receive this? Hitler later spoke with contempt about Jewish national aspirations. He did not think the Jews would be capable of achieving anything noteworthy along those lines. After Hitler came to power the Zionists in Palestine negotiated the 'Haavara' Agreement. This enabled Jews in Germany to move to Palestine and transfer a portion of their wealth with them. In return Germany received Jewish money without violence, a mitigation in international Jewish agitation against Germany, and the removal of Jews from Germany. Thus too, the Hitler regime was helped to consolidate its hold over the German public. Once the Nazi rulers felt more certain of themselves they annulled the agreement. They then went to war with the intention of exterminating all the Jews they could. They began with Europe but aspired to do the same to the Jews in Palestine.
Hitler and the Nazis, Anti-Zionism
by Jeffrey Herf
First, Hitler despised Zionism. In fact he ridiculed the idea as he was convinced that the Jews would be incapable of establishing and then defending a state. More importantly, he and his government viewed the prospect of a Jewish state in Palestine as part of the broader international Jewish conspiracy which his fevered imagination presented as a dire threat to Germany. While (after robbing them of most of their possessions) the Nazis did allow some German Jews to leave the country in the 1930s in order to travel to Palestine, that policy was primarily driven by a desire to get the Jews out of Germany rather than to build a Jewish state in Palestine. By the late 1930s the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini, who later collaborated with the Nazis in wartime Berlin, had informed German diplomats stationed in Jerusalem that the entry of Jews into Palestine from Germany was angering local Arabs. For reasons of their own, the Nazis cut off Jewish emigration in 1941 to pursue their goal of murdering Europe's Jews. ' As the Israeli historian Anita Shapira has pointed out, it is only a half-truth to say that Israel was founded because of the Holocaust. The other half of the truth is that literally millions of Jews in Europe who might have contributed to the establishment of the Jewish state in Palestine could not do so because the Nazis had murdered them. The Holocaust itself was an enormous blow to the Zionist project.
.... In November 1941, Hitler promised the Mufti, then in Berlin, that if and when the German armies were successful in the Caucuses, they would drive south to destroy the Jewish population then living in areas controlled by Britain in North Africa and the Middle East. In the summer and autumn of 1942, German General Erwin Rommel's Afrikakorps drove east from Tunisia to be met by forces from Australia, New Zealand and Britain at the Battle of El Alamein in Egypt. Nazi propaganda in those weeks and months urged Arab listeners to 'kill the Jews,' dispensing with any distinctions between Zionists and Jews. As the German historians Martin Cuppers and Klaus Michael Mallman have demonstrated in 'Nazi Palestine: The Plans for the Extermination of the Jews of Palestine,' it was only the Allied victory at El Alamein over Rommel's forces that prevented the arrival of SS units eager to carry out mass murders of Jews in North Africa and Mandatory Palestine. ....
So that sums up the German attitude to the Balfour Declaration as far as we understand at present. The Germans at the time do NOT seem to have attached much importance to the Balfour Declaration per se. It was all a Jewish thing. The Jews were depicted as having stabbed Germany in the back, as being behind the Bolshevik Revolution and the Communist menace, and as being capitalist manipulators, forces of decay and putrefaction, sucking the blood of innocent Germans, etc. In their eyes since the Balfour Declaration involved Jews it must have been bad but not specifically exceptionally so.
Lately a tendency has developed to ascribe to the Balfour Declaration in German thought an importance it did not have at the time.
One version proposes that:
# Jews get an agreement from Britain to support the creation of a Jewish state, the international Jewish community then begin to undermine the German war effort to cause the collapse of morale and the collapse of the Ottoman and thus achieve their master plan. #
Another version has been proposed by Michael Mills in his posting on Quora to this question:
What did Germany think of the Balfour Declaration?
# Germans generally saw a connection between the Balfour Declaration issued in November 1917 and the US declaration of war in April of that year, and reached the logical conclusion that it must be a reward to Jewish political organisations for helping to bring the US into the war against Germany. #
#... the Balfour Declaration was a major factor in the emergence of the belief in Germany that it had been betrayed by the Jews, and that that betrayal had led to the German defeat.#
I could find no overwhelming evidence to support the above statement. An examination of the relevant facts makes such a proposition seem EXTREMELY unlikely.
Here is another source that thinks along the same lines as Michael Mills:
The Balfour Declaration and the Zimmermann Note
By John Cornelius
Cornelius claims that the Zimmerman Note brought the USA into the war and that German Jews had revealed its contents to the USA. Cornelius admits he has no proof but tries to build a hypothesis around the possibility.
Chaim Weizmann's autobiography for this period makes interesting reading, especially if one keeps in mind the dates of the ZT [i.e. the 'Zimmerman Note' to Mexico offering to return portions of the USA to Mexico in return for Mexico joins Germany in attacking the USA. The USA and Germany at the time were not at war. The Zimmerman Note changed this.]
One statement Weizmann makes is that in 1916 the German government approached German Zionists with the suggestion that they might serve as intermediaries in peace negotiations with the British. He states that some preliminary contacts were made but that ultimately they came to nothing.
The whole idea concerning the Balfour Declaration having been a major factor in German thinking about the Jews seems to have arisen with the Nazi Racial Theorist, Alfred Rosenberg:
Stab-in-the-back myth. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A version of the stab-in-the-back myth was publicized in 1922 by German anti-Semitic theorist Alfred Rosenberg in his primary contribution to Nazi theory on Zionism, Der Staatsfeindliche Zionismus("Zionism, the Enemy of the State"). Rosenberg accused German Zionists of working for a German defeat and supporting Britain and the implementation of the Balfour Declaration.[a] Nicosia: "Rosenberg argues that the Jews had planned the Great War in order to secure a state in Palestine. In other words, he suggested that they generated violence and war among the gentiles in order to secure their own, exclusively Jewish, interests. In fact, the title of one of those works, Der Staatsfeindliche Zionismus ("Zionism, the Enemy of the State"), published in 1922, conveys the gist of Rosenberg's approach to the question, an approach that Hitler had been taking in some of his speeches since 1920. Rosenberg writes: 'The Zionist Organization in Germany is nothing more than an Organization that perpetrates the legal subversion of the German state.' He further accuses the Zionists of betraying Germany during World War I by supporting Great Britain and its Balfour Declaration, working for a German defeat and the implementation of the Balfour Declaration, supporting the Versailles settlement, and embracing the Jewish National Home in postwar, British-controlled Palestine."
The Balfour Declaration had promised a homeland for the Jews in Palestine.
This was a result of :
- (1) Restorationism i.e. the mainly British Desire to restore to the Jews their ancient land as described by the Bible. Some form or other of this belief had existed in England since the time of Cromwell, if not before then. The belief may not have been widespread but it had been held by important people throughout the ages. See: "The Vision Was There. A History of the British Movement for the Restoration of the Jews to Palestine" by Franz Kobler, 1956, London.
- (2) Humanitarian Considerations. The desire to find the Jews a place of refuge especially in light of the treatment they had received before the war under the Czar in Russia.
- (3) Zionist Agitation. The British Public was in favor of Zionism, many Jews were prominent socially and had friends in high places, the Balfour Declaration was to be received favorably (at first) by Jews and Gentiles in Britain, the USA, and elsewhere.
- (4) Anti-Semitic Delusions. Anti-Jewish propaganda had exaggerated the potential influence and power of the Jews. It was hoped that by helping the Jews the Jews would reciprocate. The German Press had mentioned the possibility of a pro-Zionist position being used to help the German war effort. This attitude DID NOT reflect that of the German Establishment but it was presented to the British as if it did. The Balfour Declaration was therefore issued to PRECLUDE the Germans from doing something similar. See: https://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.... James Renton Oct 26, 2017
#The British policy elite's views reflected deeply embedded notions of the 'Jewish race' and 'Jewish power', the 'impurity' of the Palestinian Arabs - and the incapability of both to ever rule themselves. Those tropes still reverberate today. # This scenario is that later described by Lloyd George (when he is said to have been slightly deranged) who had been the British PM at the time BUT it has been disavowed by others. Lloyd George was both a Restorationist and an anti-Jewish Conspiracy type wavering between the two. Personally I would ascribe the most credit to option no.1. The Restoration Movement.
- (5) Colonial Aspirations. A desire that Palestine become a British Colony with colonists (i.e. Jews) who would be dependent on the British and of like mind to them.
Timeline for Events Under Consideration:
Russia 8-16 March 1917. February Revolution: Czar Abdicates. Provisional Government under Prince Lvov.
USA, 6 April 1917, declares war on Germany: This was a result of German provocations and acts of hostility.
Russia April 1917. Vladimir Lenin, the Bolshevik activist, under German protection and with German gold returns from Exile in Switzerland. Bolsheviks join Provisional Government. Nevertheless Russia continues the War despite Bolshevik opposition. In July Alexander Kerensky (who was half-Jewish) a Social Democrat tries to eliminate Lenin who goes into hiding. Right-winger General Kornilov attempts a coup which fails.
Russia October 1917. Bolsheviks take over Government of Russia.
Britain and Jewry, 2 November 1917, Balfour Declaration. A month later the Allies took Jerusalem.
Russia and the Central Powers, December 1917. An armistice between Russia and Germany-Austria was signed. This took Russia out of the war and freed forces in the east to be moved westward.
The Allies occupied Jerusalem, December also 1917.
Russia and Germany. Brest-Litovsk Treaty: 3 March 1918. Germany receives use of the Ukraine and an economic hinterland such as Hitler later strove for. Potentially this would have given Germany the resources it needed to carry on the War.
Australian and British forces defeat the Germans at the Battle of Amiens, 8 - 11 Aug 1918. The Australian Jew, General John Monash (born in Prussia and a one-time neighbor of the German commander, Ludendorff), using innovative tactics smashed the German Army in less than an hour. This was the beginning of the end for the Germans as Ludendorff admitted at the time. It took 6 more months for Germany to finally surrender but after Amiens it was over. This was before the American troops had reached France and been prepared for battle. Germany was already defeated thanks to the British and their Australian Dominion. Later at the Versailles Peace Conference the Australian PM, Billy Hughes, reminded everybody that the Australian Forces in World War-1 suffered more casualties than the USA did. Monash had been born in Prussia but if he had have stayed there the Germans would not have let him advance in their ranks. By his parents moving to Australia he was enabled to head the Australian Army. Monash reciprocated by caring for his men, and in his words "feeding" them with victory.
Russia, 16-17 July 1918.Â The Czar and his family were put to death by Bolsheviks. The Bolsheviks had come to power through the aid of Germany but the Germans later blamed Bolshevik excesses and their own exploitation of other peoples on the Jews:
Yivo: World War I
Germany intensified its strategy of establishing conservative regimes in the occupied lands that would control the spread of Bolshevik-inspired revolutionary tendencies, even as it helped to strengthen the Bolsheviks, hand in Russia proper. It replaced the Ukrainian Central Rada, which it had recognized in February 1918 as the legitimate government in Ukraine but which it distrusted for its social radicalism no less than for its political inexperience, with a puppet government known as the Hetmanate. In May 1918, this policy of establishing easily controllable regimes was extended to Romania as well. None of the administrations set up by the Central Powers during this period demonstrated any sympathy for the collective political aspirations of Jews on their territories, and their German protectors showed no inclination to change their minds. In Ukraine, the Hetmanate effectively nullified the arrangements for Jewish autonomy that had begun to be implemented under the Central Rada, while in Romania the German-dominated government left the country's long-standing practice of restricting Jewish citizenship essentially in force.
Meanwhile, the continued flow of revolutionary rhetoric from Moscow even after the Bolsheviks had left the war, together with the prominence of Jews among the Bolshevik leadership, provided the new conservative regimes established under German patronage with a device for mobilizing popular support. Leaders of these regimes, who had been widely and accurately, perceived as tools of German policy in Eastern Europe, could now portray themselves as nationalist defenders of their countries and peoples against the purported Bolshevik threat. In this context, Jewish demands for autonomy and a share of state resources were easily represented as violations of national solidarity that could only serve nefarious Bolshevik interests. Thus the specter of Jews as Bolshevik agents began to permeate the areas under German domination, increasing tensions between Jews and their non-Jewish neighbors. Such tensions were exacerbated as well by the growing scarcity of food in the region during the final year of the war, a scarcity compounded by forcible German grain requisitions. The prominence of Jews in the grain trade, especially in Ukraine, made it easy to deflect peasant anger over confiscations from the authorities onto Jews and to blame them for food shortages in general. Against this background, observers began noting attacks upon Jews by elements from the local population in various regions under German domination.
Russia 3 April 1922. Stalin is appointed General Secretary of the Communist Party.
Russia. December 1922. Creation of the Soviet Union.
Russia Re-Arms the Germans! After World War-1 Russia almost immediately began to help Germany circumvent its terms of surrender and prepare for the next war.
Germany and Russia. The Germans had helped the Bolsheviks take power in Russia. The Germans had benefited from the subsequent peace agreement. After the war the Russians trained the German army and air force circumventing the Peace restrictions. Winston Churchill in 'The Gathering Storm,' the first volume of his History of World War Two, describes how Russia helped Germany re-arm. This was before the time of Hitler. Later Stalin helped silence the Communist opposition in Germany to Hitler. Stalin was allied to Hitler at the first and went out of his way to give Germany all the economic resources and other assistance that she needed. If there was a 'Conspiracy' that was it and not anything else. Why Hitler then attacked Russia is another story. To repeat: Germany had helped the Communists come to power in Russia and after the First World War continued to benefit from Communist cooperation in secretly re-arming itself and in training its military especially the Air Force. The Communists under Stalin had helped Hitler come to power and then in 1939 been allied with him in attacking and partitioning Poland. Finaly, before he died Stalin was to take steps to exterminate the Jews just like Hitler had tried to do. Stalin expired before his nefarious plans could be put into effect.
The Nazis and Communists were two faces of the same enemy.