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Scapegoat: Coming to Grips with an Age-Old Problem

by Roy Masters

At last, the world will be forced to come to grips with an age-old problem. The survival of the human race and of civilization has finally come to rest upon the survival of the Jews, the founders of Western civilization. 

Although it has much in common with other types of racism and bigotry, anti-Semitism has a special religious, spiritual dimension that make it unique. As history shows, the suffering that people encounter tends to either strengthen or destroy them, depending on how they deal with it. The Jewish race has survived the test of persecution, perhaps for a special purpose.

The human race has an inescapable sense of guilt, says Karl Barth, the pre-eminent Swiss theologian. People, individually and collectively, are compelled to project their guilts onto a scapegoat. In other words, people look for someone or something on which to unload their frustrations. They look for someone they can hold accountable for their problems, someone next to whose guilt they can feel innocent. Although this human phenomenon is rarely adequately explained, history records its ramifications. The 6 million Jews killed in Hitler's Germany is certainly one of the most tragic examples of scapegoating on a massive scale. 

Pre-World War II Germany faced a hyperinflated economy, uncertainty and chaos the perfect setting for tyranny. Adolf Hitler promised to bring order by eliminating those who were to blame, the handicapped, the Gypsies, and, particularly the Jews. 

Faced with the same turbulence as the rest of German society, the Jews maintained a remarkable stability, economic resiliency, and a strong social structure. They stood out from the rest, a fact that made it all the easier to justify attacking them. Indeed, Hitler's writings made it clear that he was envious of Jewish success. 

In the last century, the world witnessed the Iraqi atrocities committed against the Kuwaitis: torture, murder, pillage and rape. What did the Kuwaitis  do to deserve this? They were rich in oil and poorly armed. They were the perfect target on whom the Iraqis could vent their repressed rage, built up from living under a tyranny they were born into. Lies and scapegoating paved the path for the Iraqis to plunder the largely unprotected Kuwaiti wealth.   

In both examples, the formula is the same: a need to express hostility and frustration upon a weaker people who are not the actual cause of the problems suffered by the perpetrator.

More than any other race of people, the Jews have represented grace under pressure. They have resisted the horror of doing unto others what was done to them. By way of some mysterious grace they have retained their identity as God's chosen people. By grace they have withstood the onslaught of viciousness. 

Looking back over the endless tide of bloodbaths, the Jewish race has been a relentless target. Amazingly, one out of every two Jews has been murdered over the last 800 years. Yet the Jewish people continue to hold to the righteous roots that keep them a separate people. They fulfill a prophecy I believe is about to unfold.

What we call Third World nations consist of populations of soulless beings, victims compulsively creating victims. Those who somehow manage to retain their consciousness are persecuted, tortured and murdered. Their very presence becomes a threat to the existence of their damned brethren. 

Evil exists in this world as the enemy of God and people of good will. The innocent have always been the ones who suffer the persecution for just being who they are. Most often they are not even aware that they are good people or why they are hated.

Through thousands of years of suffering, the remnant gathered together into a great nation, under God, and they prospered. After the Holocaust, this same great nation was instrumental in re-establishing the state of Israel, which God had promised. And so it has come to pass that the godless, rogue nations have assembled to do battle against Israel and America.   

Tyrants tremble, for the guiding spirit of their collective evil hearts knows that the great and terrible day of reckoning is coming. The last Great War, called Armageddon, between the good of every race, color and creed, and the evil of every race, color and Creed, is about to come to pass.

Why this global aversion to the Jews?  Karl Barth suggests,  That which is suppressed in others is not suppressed in the Jews. And that which is concealed in others is not concealed in the Jews. People in general, often from childhood, cannot express the bright potential that remains buried inside them. But the potential shines forth in the Jew, says Barth. This makes the Jew a mirror in which the world immediately recognizes itself indeed, in which all the nations recognize themselves as they stand before the judgment seat of God.

The Jew is more than a victim. In spite of unyielding persecution, Jews have stayed the course and survived as a people, possibly through the promise God made that salvation will be unto the Jews. The Jew is also mirror wherein people discern a spiritual dimension they have often spent their whole lives denying.

Jewish humility shows up as a different and more penetrating light than other men. Even though they themselves are not any better or worse than other men, says Barth. The Jew belongs to an elected people, elected to do something, to serve the purpose of the creator. This election is still valid, and Jews are participants in their purpose whether they like it or not.

Perhaps this may explain why the Jews have never turned around and found their own scapegoats. They have always stood in opposition to cruelty and have refused to reflect that cruelty. As Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust survivor, stated so eloquently in his book A Jew Today, They want us to founder, but we will let our joy explode; they want to make us hard, closed to solidarity and love, well, we will be obstinate but filled with compassion.

Those words encapsulate the only path to true freedom. The tyrant thrives on the weakness of his victim and he revels in and is empowered by the pain he causes. To be saved from the tyrant's clutches, and man must, he must be obstinate but filled with compassion. By stubbornly refusing to hate the tyrant, a person or nation is safe from becoming a tyrant himself, and like the Jews, he will survive.

The obstinate refusal of the Jews to follow the path of least resistance and succumb to the dog-eat-dog system of things is a source of great irritation to some of the world. It makes no difference whether people are conscious of it or not. In the actual existence of the Jews, the rest of humanity is confronted with the fact of God's grace and the truth of God's mercy. This is the sole basis of Jewish existence.

The world's irritation with the Jews confirms the evidence is unwelcome. It annoys and irritates people that the Jew is undeniably here and flourishing as he has for centuries. It annoys and irritates people that the Jews can exist in spite of the unfavorable historic situation in which they have been placed, in spite of the fact that they had no homeland until the last century. They were kicked out of one country after another over the centuries. The world tried to kill them off, but they have survived, and in surviving continue to hold up the mirror.

Christians believe that the Jews have a special place in the salvation of the world. After all, Jesus himself was a Jew. But because the Jews have not kept the faith, they were scattered over the earth, only to learn the lesson the hard way. The torch was passed to the Gentiles until the time of the Gentiles is fulfilled.

Perhaps the Jews have had to suffer beyond what others have had to endure in order to become prepared for greater responsibility. And perhaps, in biblical terms, the devil is angry because the Jews have remained in their rightful place as God¹s chosen people.

Some theologians suggest that anti-Semitism is on the rise. They say that as the forces of evil, alive in every system (whether one race against another, or one religion against another), are joining in unity against the common enemy -- God, as represented by the Jews. This effort to destroy God's purpose for the Jews will fail. According to this theory, demonic forces are hard at work using the pent-up rage of the masses as the time of world's salvation draws near.

Whatever the case, it is very important for Christian and Jewish brothers to stand together as lamps in the world, against the forces of evil. The Jews will not be destroyed, and they will not do unto others what was done unto them -- hence their survivability as a people. They will not perish. They will be victims no more.

Like it or not, everyone is part of the world's problems. Everyone of every race, not just Jews, is called upon to break the bonds of enslavement to the system of cruelty around him or her. While this carries global implications, the practice of dealing with cruelty is individual. Forgiving one's neighbor is no substitute for the need to stand up to the authors of cruelty. What must be realized is the ability to stand up without anger, frustration, rage and resentment.  Jesus said, as he was being crucified, Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do. This must not be interpreted as sweeping hellishness under some international rug. In Jesus the perfect fullness of the light shone, the perfect contrast to evil and cruelty, especially the kind that uses government to enslave citizens.

Jesus was a Jew, but he was more than a Jew, because he was more than a mere man. In him is not only the calling of the Jew and the fulfillment of the law, but also the fulfillment of grace calling to all mankind to break the chain of misery from which has come all the holocausts, diseases, strife and suffering since the beginning of time.

With that realization and true compassion it is possible to have the power and courage to face the tormentor, looking him straight in the eye without flinching. Since the predator feeds on fear, he is terrified when his target is not afraid. Here he has met something other than himself, shining through his intended victim. This is when the predator cringes and realizes himself in a mirror of another's love.

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Articles by Roy Masters

Understanding Society

bulletWhen a Whole Nation Suffers
   from Post-traumatic Stress
   Syndrome

bulletAn Open Letter To Our
   Latino Brothers and Sisters

bulletScapegoat: Coming to Grips
   with an Age-old Problem

bulletThe Excuse - Deadlier Than
   the Deed

bulletOf Yourself You Can Do Nothing

bulletBrainwashing - Synthesis of
   the Russian Textbook of
   Psychopolitics - pdf

bulletBrainwashing - Synthesis of
   the Russian Textbook of
   Psychopolitics - html

bulletBattle for the Mind

bulletMental Robots - The Enemy is
   Within

bulletThe Altered Mind - Sympathy
   for the Devil

bulletHate Speech... How to keep
   from being poisoned

bulletDoing All the Right
   Things For All the Wrong
   Reasons... Peace Protestors!

bulletCan Terrorists Compel Voters?

bulletAccuse the Victim - The
   Genesis of Terrorism

bulletSurviving the Terror at Home

bulletTerrorizing the Terrorists

bulletDealing with the Trauma of
   Terrorists

bulletSaddam

bulletNeutralizing Intimidators

bulletBring Back the America
   I Love

bulletUsing the Tools of
   Psychological Warfare to
   Divide America

bulletJudge Not the Dead

bulletEvilution vs. Evolution

bulletThe Growing Prevalence of
   Monstrous Evil

bulletTerri: A Precedent for Mass
   Murder



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