All Jews are Indigenous

Anti-Zionists claim that converts to Judaism are not genuine Jews. Contrary to all genetic science do Anti-Zionists claim that Ashkenazi Jews are all descended from “European” converts to Judaism. Genetic science in contrast has determined that Ashkenazi Jews are descended from a mixture of Levantines and Italians although Middle Eastern origin predominates genetically. Who were those Italian ancestors of the Ashkenazis? No doubt Italians who in Roman times converted to Judaism, became observant Jews and married fellow Jews who were genetically of Judean origin. Most of those converts were Italian women as patrilineally Ashkenazi Jews are overwhelmingly of Levantine origin.

It is peculiar how Anti-Zionists experience a need to make racist distinctions between Jews. Ethiopian Jews are not of Levantine origin and are therefore according to Anti-Zionist racism not genuine Jews due them being entirely descended from converts to Median Judaism. Ethiopian and Eritrean Christians are descended from Jews who later converted Christianity as evidenced by residual Jewish practices among them. Today’s Ethiopian Jews are therefore a small remnant who have remained Jewish for millennia in surviving religious imperialism.

How did Judaism emerge? Atenists priests (ancestors of the Levites) fled Egypt through Sinai when the rule of the 14th century Pharaoh Akhenaten came to an end and in subsequent centuries did they convert the polytheist population of Canaan to Atenist monotheism. During the Israelite Kingdoms apparently the remaining non-Israelites converted to Israelite religion which at the time was a mixture of Atenism and Canaanite polytheism. Why is this so? Because the ancient Israelite Kingdoms is the period when the non-Israelite peoples of Canaan disappear from history. The existence of these non-Israelite peoples of Canaan is documented both in the Hebrew Bible and by archaeology. The most plausible explanation for the disappearance of those peoples from history is that they become Israelites by conversion to the Israelite religion. 

What does this prove? That all Jews are descended from converts. Judaism has an historical origin and Atenism which developed into Israelite religion attracted many converts in Canaan. The Atenist origin of Judaism is proven by surviving sun worship in core Median Judaism where it is common to pray towards the sun and where even today the sun is used as a communal symbol by e.g. the Yezidis.

Anti-Zionists continue to subscribe to racist readings of Jewish history where converts to Judaism and their descendants are “fake Jews”. It is peculiar that Anti-Zionists bother to make this distinction since they in any case deny the historical connection between Jews and the land of Israel. Anti-Zionist Arab historians typically deny the existence of the two biblical temples on the Temple Mount and contrary to all archeological evidence deny the entire Jewish history in the land of Israel in even claiming without any evidence that Jews are not descended from Israelites despite the overwhelmingly Levantine genetic origin of most rabbinically Jewish ethnic groups. They furthermore claim that Jesus was not Jewish but a Palestinian and deny the entire Jewish historical context as documented in the New Testament, including the existence of the Second Temple which the New Testament describes Jesus as frequenting. This denialism is just as reprehensible and Anti-Semitic as Holocaust denial.

Jews are along with Samaritans indigenous to the land of Israel and when someone converts to Judaism or Samaritanism do they become indigenous as well. This is because conversion to Judaism is not mere religious conversion to a religion but constitutes tribal initiation into the indigenous Jewish nation. Genetic mixing is common in many indigenous peoples as among other peoples around the world. Many native Americans have African and/or European genetic ancestry and some native Americans are so-called “freedmen” of African genetic origin who are entirely descended from tribal initiates. Are the Freedmen any less indigenous? Of course not.

The racism of Anti-Zionism is exposed in their practices of racializing the Jews who of course have no interest in becoming racialized by their enemies or by anyone else for that matter. The German Nazis stigmatized Ashkenazi Jews for having resulted from genetic mixing between Levantines and Europeans. Anti-Zionists practice similar racialization of Ashkenazi Jews by stigmatizing them as “Europeans” despite most Ashkenazi Jews not living in Europe and not having been born in Europe. The claim that Ashkenazi Jews are so-called “Whites” (is there even such a thing considering the immense genetic diversity in Europe?) has no scientific basis whatsoever. Ashkenazi Jews are as Italkian Jews and indeed most ethnic groups in the Jewish people overwhelmingly descended from Levantines. But how does this matter? Anti-Zionists in any case deny the indigenous Jewish connection to the land of Israel so why bother to make racist distinctions between Jews? Obviously, this forgery of genetic history is made so as to be able to falsely stigmatize Ashkenazi Jews returning to the land of Israel as “European” colonialists. Core Median Jewry are likely mostly descended from converts to Israelite religion although they no doubt share in small part an Israelite genetic origin. Does this make them any less Jewish? They have been Jewish for over 27 centuries so to claim that they are less Jewish or even non-Jewish due to mostly being descended from ancient converts to Median Judaism is plain racism. 

The Jews are an indigenous nation and thus converts become fully initiated into this indigenous nation and become indigenous as well. It is racist and Anti-Semitic to claim that converts to Judaism are not real Jews and not indigenous.

Published by Daniella Bartfeld

Daniella Bartfeld is the founding director of the Aliyah Organization.

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