Being Ordinary

Gilad Atzmon — gilad.co.uk July 5, 2018

giladprophetThe Jewish press in Britain and around the world has seemed thrilled for the last few days.  “One of Britain’s most vocal anti-Semites,”( apparently me) “was handed a humiliating court defeat in London on Monday” wrote The Jewish Algemeiner. On Twitter, Israel’s firsters wrote about me ‘grovelling’ at court.
I guess that lying is a bit of an official policy within such circles. In order to remove any questions regarding my position in court, here is my Lawyer’s statement as delivered on my behalf:
“Defendant’s Solicitor, Jeffrey Smele
On behalf of the Defendant, Mr. Gilad Atzmon, I agree with the words of my learned friend.  Mr. Atzmon never in fact intended that his article would suggest to the reader that Mr. Falter was a “fraudster” or that he personally profited from his position at the CAA.
Mr. Atzmon offers his sincere apology to Mr. Falter for his actions.”
(The official court settlement document can be found here.  The official court document that was the base for Falter’s claim, to which I apologised,  can be found here).
Contrary  to the exclamations in the  Zionist fake news, the court didn’t charge me with ‘antisemitsm’ or ‘lying.’  There was no mention of such words in the court’s ruling. In fact, ‘a trial’ didn’t actually take place. As proceedings evolved, I wasn’t willing to defend Justice Matthew Nicklin’s ‘definition’ of the meaning of my words. I didn’t agree that in my original paper I intended to accuse CAA chairman’s Gideon Falter of ‘fraud’ or ‘profiting personally.’  I saw no point in defending an interpretation that was merely attributed to my words.
But the issues raised here are far more complex. I wonder why these Zionist outlets see the need to engage in an intensive smear project that actually reflects very badly on the Jewish political project as a whole?
Jewishness is a sophisticated survival strategy. It is a strict regulatory system of adherence. It encourages internal debate but limits any such deliberation by clear boundaries. If Israel, for instance, deploys hundreds of snipers against unarmed Palestinian protestors and practically perpetrates a massacre, then it will allow a few of its people to speak out against its own brutality. The outcome is predictable: Israel’s war crimes are reduced to an internal debate among Jews. Within the context of the Jewish universe, every so-called ‘Jewish problem’ is met from within by Jewish dissent.
Jewish history reveals important exceptions — people who broke out; who decided to unveil the tribal matrix by means of universal thought. Jesus was such a character, he ended up nailed to the cross. Spinoza was another, he was punished by excommunication. Marx, in his early writing, broke ranks and pointed out on the intrinsic bond between Jews and capitalism. The 20th century brought about some Jewish heretics and to a certain extent I followed their path– rather than speaking ‘as a Jew’ and contributing to ‘controlling the opposition,’ I openly denounced my roots; spiritually, culturally and politically. I stopped being a Jew and dedicated my time to the production of a critical study of the tribal mechanism that drives Jewish politics and identity.
It has never been an easy journey. Since I launched my writing career, I have been subject to intense attempts to buy me out by recruiting me into the Jewish so-called ‘anti Zionist’ camp. Anti Zionists, as they call themselves, can offer a lot of support.  They are well connected and organised. They can set up your tours, concerts, talks, university lectures and media coverage.
It took me a few years to understand that my dissent was actually pretty similar to early Zionist thought, sharing its phantasmic idea of becoming ‘people like all other people.’ Indeed, my personal goal was to fulfil the early Zionist project for myself: to become an ordinary human being like all other goyim. I realised that to achieve my goal, the first step was to stop being a Jew.
In 2014 Professor Marc H. Ellis,  regarded by many as the leading contemporary Jewish theologian, published  Future of the Prophetic,  an extensive study of the Hebrew prophet. In his book, Ellis dedicated a chapter to me and my work. He reached the conclusion that yours truly is the new Jewish prophet.
“Like the ancient prophets Atzmon exposes Jews. At the same time, Atzmon believes that the Bible, from which the prophets spring, is bogus….Atzmon provides no hiding place for Jews anywhere.”  (Future of the Prophetic, Marc H. Ellis pg’ 332)
“Atzmon is extreme but, in his extremity, he is much like the biblical prophets.” (pg’332)
So in the world in which we live, some Jews see me as Satan incarnated, others have called me the last Hebrew prophet. Naturally, I was flattered by Ellis’ insight. And it helped me to grasp the role of the prophet within the Jewish survival paradigm. Making a dissenter into a ‘Hebrew prophet’ works to dismantle opposition. It reduces the universal critical insight into an internal Jewish exchange. I wrote to Ellis that as much as I was thrilled by his view of my work, I didn’t see myself as either a prophet or a Jew.  Instead I saw the need to emphasise that rather than speaking ‘to Jews,’ I much preferred to talk about “Jewishness, Jewish culture and ID politics.”
My approach must have been frustrating for both Zionists and the so-called ‘anti’. Since the publication of my first book  (2001) I have been persistently harassed by Jewish ethnic activists of all persuasions (except probably Torah Jews). They have called me a racist, an anti-Semite, a bigot, etc. and yet, to their dismay, despite the strict legislation in Europe and America, I have never once been questioned by any law enforcement body about anything I have ever written or said.
I have challenged my detractors and those who call me a ‘racist’ and an ‘anti-Semite’ to point out where I have referred critically to Jews or anyone else as a ‘race,’ ‘ethnicity’ or ‘biology.’ I have vowed that if such evidence appears I will issue an apology and never write again. Yet no such reference has ever been put in front of me or anywhere else. Instead, I criticise Jewish ideology, culture and ID politics because I believe that ideologies, cultures and politics must be subject to debate and criticism!
I will keep doing this as long as the law in Britain allows. If this changes, I will either impose silence on myself, or leave London and move to a slightly freer city, perhaps Moscow or Teheran.
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Gilad Atzmon, a former Israeli soldier now a writer and an award winning Jazz musician resident in London, where he lives in virtual exile

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