Extracts from Hervé Ryssen’s Les espérances planétariennes
World Government – A Cosmopolitan Utopia
Hopes for a world government are justified primarily by a desire for universal peace. In this respect, Julien Benda, somewhat of a pioneer in his own way, expresses clearly some of the globalist aspirations of the inter-war period. In La Trahison des clercs, he foresees, with typical prophetic zeal, that all nations will merge into one.
“The desire to claim to be distinct will be transferred from the nation to the species. And, indeed, this movement already exists. It exists over and above classes and nations, the human race’s desire to transform itself into the master of things. We can expect this tendency to grow stronger, leading to the disappearance of wars. It is in this way that we will achieve universal fraternity. United as one giant army and brought together in one immense factory, the human race will achieve great things … a glorious control of its environment and a genuinely joyous conscience of its greatness.” (1)
So the pacifist movement supported the noble cause of a unified world. Julien Benda, after the war, became a supporter of the Communist Party. But his generous ideals didn’t stop him from justifying the crushing of the Hungarian Uprising and the trials which followed.
World famous scientist Albert Einstein was one of the first famous figures to publically call for the establishment of a world government. After the war, in November 1945, he published an article in Atlantic Monthly :
“Given that only the US and Britain currently possess the secret of the atomic bomb, these countries should invite the Soviet Union to prepare and present the first plan for the establishment of a world government…Once the proposed constitution has been adopted by the three major powers, the smaller nations would be invited to join this world government…A world government, as I see it, should have the authority to judge all military matters. In addition to this, I would accord it just one power: the right to intervene in the internal affairs of a nation, in the case where a minority persecutes the majority, which could create instability and possibly lead to a war.” (2)
Einstein then has the nerve to claim that:
“While it is true that a minority governs in the Soviet Union, I do not think that the internal situation of the country poses a threat to world peace.” (3)
In an article published in January 1946 by Survey Graphic, he reiterates: “The human race’s desire for peace can only be achieved by the creation of a world government” (4)
The sociologist Edgar Morin also wishes to establish a world government. He denies, however, wanting to promote paternalism or any form of racism towards the populations in the southern hemisphere. Even though, according to him, it is in fact the West which should be responsible for this great project. The West has the technology and power to impose this vision on the rest of humanity. Happiness on planet earth will depend on southern nations accepting universal democracy, whether they like it or not, and such a plan doubtless implies the “right to intervene”.
“The human organisation to which we aspire cannot be based on the model of the white Western male … It should, on the contrary, stimulate multi-ethnic and multi-cultural forces.” (4)
So it is not a question of promoting any form of domination by the white male. The idea is simply to use Western military power and technology to demolish authoritarian regimes in order to safeguard the triumph of democracy in the world. The West will be a sort of laboratory for the planetary multicultural experiment and, at the same time, will act as the guardian of the New World Order.
“We cannot hide from the significant obstacles to the creation of a world society. The spread of globalisation has awoken nationalist resistance movements … and the elimination of these would require ruthless domination” (5)
In his Dictionary of the 21st Century, Jacques Attali also endorses the right to intervene in the affairs of other nation states: “In a globalised world, everybody will have an interest in ensuring that their neighbour does not descend into barbarism. This will mark the beginning of a world democracy.” According to Attali, the New World Order should have the right, where necessary, to exercise “ruthless domination”, as suggested somewhat reluctantly by Edgar Morin.
“The prevention of war and conflicts will mean that a global authority draws an inventory of all world threats, warns the financial institutions, oversees negotiations between countries, verifies the implementation of agreements and imposes sanctions for violations. There will be plans for an organisation for world peace accompanied by the first talks for the establishment of a world government.” (6)
The issue will not be the right to intervene but the “duty to intervene”. The process of globalisation will then be completed:
“Once European authorities have been put in place, there may well be an urgent need for world government” (7)
(1) Julien Benda, La Trahison des clercs, Grasset, 1927, 1975, p. 295.
(2) Albert Einstein, Le Pouvoir nu, Propos sur la guerre et la paix, Hermann, 1991.
(4) Edgar Morin, La Méthode 6, Ethique, Seuil 2004. Chapitre : éthique planétaire.
(6) Jacques Attali, Dictionnaire du XXIème siècle, Fayard 1998.
The European Union – The First Step to World Government
The European ideal, as currently defined by Brussels, is clearly one of the ideological weapons in the arsenal of those who support globalism. The establishment of the euro marks a great step forward to the unification of the continent. But this is just one stage in the project, because the European Union is in fact a mere stepping stone towards the unification of the entire planet. Jacques Attali confirms this in his Dictionary of the 21st Century: “The euro will lead to the creation of a European government in the first quarter of the century. It’ll probably even be used as a model, in the second half of the century, for a world currency.”
Other globalist thinkers share this vision of the future. We shouldn’t believe that the European architects plan to abolish nations in order to lay the foundation of a powerful empire, capable of meeting the century’s challenges. The motivations of a globalist thinker like Julien Benda, quoted by Alain Finkielkarut in his L’humanité perdue, are entirely different: “The idea of a fixed European frontier is illusory in this unstoppable evolution. With Europe, European man…will have made a great step towards his true destination” which is the unification of the planet. (1)
The sociologist Pierre Bourdieu fell into line with Julien Benda’s thinking when he declared during a conference* that :
“I should like us to be a sort of European parliament for culture. I say European in the sense that I believe this to be a phase. Being European represents a higher level of universalisation, in so far as this is better than being French.”
In this respect, it is considered, following the example of Benda, that “Europe, albeit impious, is necessarily less impious than the nation” because “the European citizen will inevitably feel less attached to Europe than a French citizen is to France…Via a looser link, his feeling of national identity and loyalty to the land will be weakened.”
It is, therefore, this determination to tear up national roots which is at the heart of the European project, fully endorsed by Alain Finkielkaraut, whose remarks are invariably tinged with contempt for the indigenous population:
“By becoming European, the French citizen will transcend his natal pettiness, expand his backyard and will occupy a greater space, more abstract, more rational, and more civilised than the nation”
Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in the late 20th century, numerous intellectuals were filled with enthusiasm by the tremendous progress that the European project was making. They were excited by the spread of globalist thinking and the accelerated construction of the pluralistic society.
Their enthusiasm was in no way curbed by the war which had broken out between the Serbs, the Croats and the Bosnians in what used to be Yugoslavia. With warlike prose, many of them undertook the defence of multicultural Bosnia. Among the ultra belligerent “freedom fighters” pushing for a war against Serbia, Bernard-Henri Lévy and Alain Finkielkraut were at the forefront.
“With its ontological purity and multinational innocence, Bosnia was in opposition to sinful nations, sinful by the very fact they are nations. Freed from all heritage, division and discord, its citizens didn’t need to be embarrassed or apologise for their affiliation. Their name was the hallmark of cosmopolitanism and their territory formed a miniature model of the universal. Being Bosnian was better than being Slovenian, Croat, Albanian, Macedonian or Serb.” (2)
President Bill Clinton’s key advisors were in total agreement with this way of thinking. They are the same people who advise George Bush today: same feathers, same song. War, therefore, was inevitable, and so Serbia was duly bombed in order to “free” Bosnia and Kosovo. The Serbs were driven out of Kosovo.
Basically, the only way to permanently eradicate national resistance movements, as well as all groups defending national identity, is to dissolve the population in a melting pot on a planetary scale, the first in line for this treatment being the European nations, whose native populations are the most likely to threaten the New World Order. Alain Finkielkarut confirms this: “The deadly risk to the world posed by the worship of national allegiance, the segmentation of humanity and the imprisonment of individuals in their race and culture can only be permanently averted by the creation of multiethnic societies.” (3)
So, ethnically homogenous nations are the principal barrier to the establishment of the universal society. This is what the battle is all about. The fact is that, following the American bombing of Serbia in 1999, it was the Serbs who were persecuted by the Kosovar Albanians: they were forced to flee their historical birthplace. The final outcome of Western military intervention was the spread of Islam across the region. The idea was, once again, to construct a multicultural Europe.
The globalist ideal is not, therefore, a mere philosophy, confined to the intellectual circles of the French republic. It permeates all major social debates, inspires our journalists and politicians. When the front page of Courrier International stated “Europe lacks Immigrants”, the editorial director, Alexandre Adler, knew that those in power would listen to him. Josef Alfred Grinblat, UN population affairs officer, pursues this policy. In his 1999 UN report on the problems posed by a weak and ageing European population, he advocates “replacement migration” and recommends that Europe be subjected to a “migratory flow of 159 million non-Europeans per year over the next 25 years.”
With this perspective in view, Bernard Birsinger, the Communist mayor of Bobigny, donated, in October 2004, a large plot of land to the local Muslim community, so that they could construct a mosque. In 2005, Emmanuel Aeschlimann, the liberal mayor of Asnières (Hauts-de-Seine), also donated land to the local Muslim community and, during a ceremony, the prime minister at the time, Nicolas Sarkozy (the “hard” right), came to lay the mosque’s foundation stone.
The European Union is a stepping stone to world government. In February 2005, the Fondation pour l’innovation politique, a think-tank very close to Jacques Chirac, published a revealing article in its Lettre No. 8. The article was entitled “European Identity?” written by the academic researcher François Ewald, president of the scientific committee. He asked:
“Does Europe mean the construction of a large nation tied to its territory, similar to Vidal La Blache’s conception of France confined within its hexagon? Or does Europe mean the formation of an open political group, free from the concept of borders and from all forms of identity (racial, ethnic, and religious), destined to constantly expand because it is based on liberal principles?”
Acting on behalf of the head of state, François Ewald revealed his vision of Europe:
“Europe does not have an identity: it is a promise. It is destined to expand: to Ukraine tomorrow and then, why not, to North African countries the day after. What greater hope could there be for the coming century?”
Former vice-president for the European Commission, Sir Leon Brittan, who descended from a persecuted Lithuanian family, was already advocating a single currency and total European unification in 1994. Of course, we would be wrong to think that the Brussels technocrats have been gifted with extraordinary political foresight because everything seems to have been pre-programmed.
Logically speaking, therefore, Turkey will enter Europe, unless a popular uprising stops this process. It will then be the turn of Morocco, which is knocking at the door, followed by Israel, which competes in the European football league and the Eurovision Song Contest.
Turkey’s entry into the EU is backed by all the globalist thinkers, from the extreme left to the liberal right, and has enjoyed the support of successive American governments. For instance, Pierre Moscovici, a socialist member of the European Parliament, believes that: “Turkey’s membership could be a form of protection against terrorism and a way to reinforce our security. Turkey’s Muslim character is highly beneficial. Europe should be multicultural and multi-religious. It should be open and recognise various legacies.” On the other end of the political spectrum, the deputy general secretary of the main liberal right party holds a similar view: “Everything must be done to drown the river of Islam in the ocean of democracy and human rights.” (4)
His remark only applies to a “Christian club”, because Islam remains for ever irreconcilable in Israel. Pierre Lellouche, Chirac’s diplomatic adviser and vice-president of the group France-Israel, maintains that: “To think that Islam is irreconcilable with democracy is to agree in advance to a war of civilisations. The question is whether we help Islam to come to terms with human rights and the market economy, or whether we let it retreat into fundamentalism.”
Only days after his return from Israel, Nicolas Sarkozy, chief of the liberal right, made the following declaration during a meeting held by the Cercle des Européens on 21 December 2014: “The problem is not Turkey but the identity of Europe. If we really want to expand to this region of the world, we should first of all integrate Israel whose population, being largely of European origin, shares our values.”
Jacques Attali, needless to say, concurs: “If there is a need to include Turkey in the EU, it is because France is a Muslim nation, owing to its historical geopolitical choices. Islam is the religion of over two million French citizens and a third of immigrants present in our country.”
Attali, of course, doesn’t intend to transform Europe into an Islamic homeland. But, in his way of thinking, Islamic immigration permits the dissolution of old European national communities. It also provides a way to confuse feelings of national identity and psychologically uproot the native population. It is in this respect that Islam is useful to globalist plans.
In his book Europe(s), published in 1994, Attali had already warned:
“Europe ought to see itself not as a Christian club but as a space without borders, stretching from Ireland to Turkey, from Portugal to Russia, from Albania to Sweden. It should culturally favour the nomad over the settled population, and should choose generosity rather than an inward-looking attitude…Recent debates on the right of foreigners to vote and on the right to asylum and citizenship clear the way for these changes.” (5)
Ten years later, the debate on the EU constitution enshrined the idea of nations merging to form a European government. Things have rapidly changed following the collapse of the Soviet Union, and it is precisely this fact which excites globalist thinkers. The messianic fever seems to have reached its peak. Indeed, never before has Europe been so dominated by globalist thinking. It creeps in everywhere: the press, radio, TV documentaries, as well as adverts where, as in the cinema, multiculturalism and mixed race couples have become an almost inviolable rule within a space of ten years. All this didn’t happen naturally. It reflects, in truth, a wilful and obsessive attempt to achieve world unification, which is thought to be the prerequisite for the coming of a messiah.
With this in mind, we can see that Europe is without doubt an essential first step. Jacques Attali confirms this in his Dictionary of the 21st Century, which, at the end of the day, very much resembles the infamous Protocols of the Elders of Zion, published in the early 20th century. He again confirms that Europe is a mere stepping-stone to greater projects:
“A Mediterranean union, bringing together three southern European countries (France, Spain and Italy) and three North African countries (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia) could be a back-up strategy or even one that is complementary. In the medium-term, such a union would have almost as many inhabitants as the European Union itself, and would contribute to political stability in a zone which is vital for France. It could first of all be set up as a common market and then taken further to form a cultural and political entity…The southern markets will not, of course, replace those of Europe – not before a long while, in any case. But the success of the Mediterranean union would pave the way for the subsequent opening of the major African markets. A Euro-African common market will be the objective of the next century.”
It couldn’t be any clearer: Turkey’s membership of the EU is but one step in the process.
In The World is my Tribe, published in 1997, the essayist Guy Sormon was already encouraging Turky’s entry into the EU:
“Closer relations with Turkey are a matter of urgency, because this would be a way to demonstrate that one can be Muslim and European”
The journalist Alexandre Adler, of course, argues for the same thing. In his article, published in Le Figaro on October 2004, he demonstrated a degree of respect for those he wishes to overcome:
“We should not say to the French that Turkey’s entry into the EU is a trivial matter, presenting no great risk, because this method only heightens the anxiety of a highly intelligent people.”
This certainly makes a change from the anti-French tirades of Alain Minc and Bernard-Henri Lévy. But in fact it is just a way to better sell his line of thinking, for he goes on to say that Turkey has “free elections, a free press, intellectuals which are equal to ours, marvellous and outward-looking universities” and represents “a fabulous opportunity… Let’s understand this sign today in order to safeguard the freedom of our continent tomorrow.”
Our freedom is at stake, obviously. In 1983, Alexandre Adler was among those who supported Henri Fiszbin’s dissident communists. Today he supports the liberal right. His career path is typical of cosmopolitan thinkers, the majority of whom came to realise that liberal democracy is a more effective means than Communism to construct a world without borders.
So everything seems to be programmed in advance. Unless, of course, resistance movements stop the machine…
*The Strasbourg conference, held in October 1991, brought together various thinkers to discuss, among other things, Europe and the war in Croatia.
(1) Alain Finkielkraut, L’Humanité perdue, Seuil, pp. 141-142.
(2) Ibidem p. 143
(3) Ibidem p. 147
(4) Le Parisien, 15 September 2004
(5) Jacques Attali, Europe(s), Fayard 1994, pp. 196 and 198
From Pacifism to Wars for “Democracy”
Going back a little bit in history, we can see that the craze for Turkey among the most “open minded” was already apparent during the 19th century. During this period, the Balkans were still ruled by the Ottoman regime, which resorted to the most extreme violence in order to suppress nationalist uprisings by Europeans subjected to its dictatorship. The Serbian uprising in 1875, for instance, was drowned in a bath of blood by the Turks, and that of the Bulgarians the following year had led to the most barbaric atrocities.
Europe was disturbed by this and Gladstone, a man who was not yet the British Prime Minister, wrote his famous book “Bulgarian Horrors and the Question of the East”, which condemned Turkey in general and Disraeli’s pro-Turkish policy in particular. This Jewish Prime Minister, an exception in British political history, also led Britain into the Afghan war, which led to an enormous loss of blood and treasure, all in the name of a supposed affront. Here again, Gladstone, in 1881, strove to oppose this disastrous military intervention which lost Afghan respect for the British.
A hundred and twenty three years later in 2002, the Afghans had to endure yet another Anglo-Saxon invasion led by George Bush and his closest advisers, the “neo-conservatives” and the ultra-Zionists. The 9/11 terrorist attacks couldn’t go unpunished. The New York twin towers, owned by Larry Silverstein, had to be avenged.
The invasion of Afghanistan in 2002 was followed by the invasion and occupation of Iraq by American soldiers in 2003. But Serbia, Iraq and Afghanistan have never been a threat to Europe, and in so far as Saddam Hussein represented a danger, it was only really ever for Israel.
These various American military interventions are all part of the great planetary project. The goal is to weaken Islam in the Islamic territories, because its followers are the only ones today who seem to vigorously resist the masters of the New World Order. The ideal would be to submit and convert all Muslim countries to the ideals of the democratic free market and militant secularism. Another component of this planetary policy is to increase the Muslim population in European countries in order to dissolve national communities and to eliminate resistance by ‘ethnically homogenous’ populations.
So Serbia, accused of ethnic cleansing, had to be punished by the “international community”. It was, therefore, dutifully bombed by the American air-force in 1999. As usual, in order to prepare the European population for a new war, mass graves were discovered in order to support the idea of a murderous regime. People were terrified by the thought of a ‘new Hitler’ and the tyrant’s formidable armed forces, even though it was a tiny and impoverished country. We are now obliged to tell the truth and admit that the mass graves were in fact military grave yards. As with the infamous mass grave in Timisoara in Romania, during the collapse of the Communist regime, we had to face up to the fact that the number of victims must have been multiplied by ten. All this propaganda, “raising awareness”, was aimed purely at preparing public opinion for a pre-meditated war.
During the military campaign against Serbia, the US government was strongly influenced by ultra-Zionist advisers all of whom were imbued with the planetary faith. On the 5 December 1996, the American President Bill Clinton had changed his foreign policy team. At the State Department, Madelein K Albright replaced Warren Christopher. Albright is in fact the surname of her divorced husband, and K refers to Korbel, a family from Czechoslovakia. At the Department of Defence, William S Cohen replaced William Perry. At the head of the CIA, Antony Deutch is replaced by John Deutch, though here again it was just a case of one member of the Council of Foreign Relations replacing another member. The former assistant to Lake, Samuel R Berger, was now in a key strategic post in charge of national security.
The American intervention allowed the Muslims to expel the Serbs from what was historically their territory. The Serbian exodus slowly continued under Bernard Kouchner’s proconsul, mandated by the UN. The Muslims today form the clear majority, after having embarked on another operation of ethnic cleansing, which was met with complete indifference by the international community. Six years later in June 2005, Bernard-Henri Lévy, talking about his political involvement during the Serbian war on a television programme, stated: “I felt sick when President Mitterrand declared that, as long as he lives, France would never declare war against the Serbs” (1).
The shift in beliefs of the Communist author, Guy Konopnicki, tells us a great deal about the ideological development of a number of Western Jewish intellectuals. He today bemoans the anti-Americanism which prevails in France on both the extreme left and right. “This lack of humanity is totally sickening”, he writes. He was a founder member of SOS-Racisme and had left this organisation with the multi-millionaire Pierre Berger as a protest against the group’s opposition to the first Gulf War.
He wrote at the time: “I had always been somebody who protested when bombs were dropped somewhere in the world. This time, and I say this without shame, I cheered when a deluge of fire rained on Iraq.” Patrick Bruel, the chart-topping French singer, also abandoned his militant pacifist convictions to support the extremely belligerent action of the US government. It is true that Israeli interests were at stake…
Konopnicki, however, will not have anybody accuse him of Islamaphobia : “I have campaigned for equal rights for the young Arabs in our suburbs, participated in the creation of SOS-Racisme, defended the Afghan revolt against the 1979 Soviet invasion and the besieged Bosnia Muslims in Sarajevo” (2). But with this new international crisis he couldn’t really remain indifferent, especially as the Jews appeared to face a direct threat. Promote Islam in France but fight it abroad. All this is completely coherent and perfectly fits the cosmopolitan ideal. He states “Extremists have struck New York with the destruction of the Twin Towers, just as they had once destroyed Florence, and then Berlin with Kristal Nacht and the burning of books”. He then has the audacity to claim that all journalists, without exception, had hidden something during the crisis: “For Osama Bin Laden the destruction of the World Trade Centre was but the prelude to further destruction, dreamt of by many: the destruction of Israel. For him, the Twin Towers were a temple of Jewish power and symbolically represented Israel” (3). They might have said so sooner.
We now understand a little better the motives of the various parties involved and the Konopniciki’s relentless struggle against the new planetary enemy: “The totalitarian regimes of the 20th century were all anti-Semitic. That of the 21st century may well be cloaked in an ethnic identity and present itself as an expression of a forgotten people but, in this particular case, it hardly distinguishes itself by its originality. Islamic extremism is an ideology of death which, just like all the others, revives anti-Semitism” (4)
Consequently, Europe must be called upon to wage war, a total war against the enemies of Israel. To this end, the interests of Israel will be said to be the same as those of “the West” and, in particular, the same as those of “civilisation” and the “whole world”. “World peace”, Konopnicki asserts, “is not in the hands of the Israeli government. On the contrary, peace will only be possible for Israel and the Palestinians if the European and American governments are capable of fighting Islamic extremism, keeping it at bay by military, economic and political means” (5).
Planetary hopes are fuelled by other people’s wars. But what is incredible is that the intellectuals who represent this school of thought have succeeded right from the very start, with the most outrageous cheek, to portray themselves as peacekeepers.
The thoughts of another avid warmonger confirm this. Elie Wiesel did not hesitate to emphasize the great ideals of peace and love in order to expedite the war against Iraq in 1991. “It is not just a question of helping Kuwait”, he said at the time, “it is a question of helping the entire Arab world.” The West as a whole had to rise up against the “butcher of Baghdad”. “It is vital to wage war against his war. Against the destructive force that he turns against humanity, we must use a greater force so that humanity may survive. For what’s at stake here is not just the future of Israel, but also the security of the civilised world, its right to peace… A desire for vengeance? No: a desire for justice. And peace. ”
The people of Israel are not to blame, of course. The people of Israel are innocent. Israel is always innocent. So they could not understand why the Iraqi dictator tried to take revenge on this country for the American invasion: “Because the Americans and their allies attack Baghdad, Iraq bombs Israel. Insane, criminal and absurd aggression but, given that this is Saddam Hussein, this doesn’t surprise anybody (6).”
Albert Einstein was deeply involved in the pacifist movement during the inter-war years. Some of his letters (7) clarify the great man’s motives. In the spring of 1914, Einstein left Switzerland to live in Berlin, where he was appointed director of a scientific institute. He was a pacifist at the time, as demonstrated by what he wrote to a friend in 1914 : “The international catastrophe in which we find ourselves imposes a heavy burden on me as an internationalist”
He corresponded with the French pacifist writer Romain Rolland, who described the first time he met Einstein: “Einstein does not expect that Germany alone will be the author of its own revival. He hopes for an Allied victory which will destroy the Prussian regime and its dynasty. Despite his lack of affinity for Britain, he would still prefer a British to a German victory, because Britain would be better than Germany at leaving the world in peace… (Note that Einstein is Jewish, which explains his internationalist outlook and his snide criticism)”
If we have correctly understood Romain Rolland, Einstein was apparently more of a patriot than a pacifist. But in so far as he had patriotic sentiment for Germany, a country which after all had welcomed him, he apparently owed more loyalty to her enemies, because he identified more with democratic ideals than he did with the German nation. In another letter, written in September 1918, Einstein stated: “The salvation of Germany, in my opinion, can only come through a rapid and radical process of democratisation, modelled on the democratic institutions of the Western powers”. His wishes were granted with the German defeat on the 9th November, when the republic was declared. He wrote at the time: “I am delighted by the turn of events. The German defeat has worked wonders. The academic community see me as some kind of radical socialist.”
In late 1918, he gave a speech at the Reichstag as a representative for the academic community. In his speech, he expressed his affinity with Communist ideas: “The old society, in which we were governed by a class that confiscated power, has just collapsed of its own sins and by the liberating acts of soldiers. For the time being, we must accept as the organs of the popular will their swiftly elected Soldiers’ Council (8), acting in concert with the Workers’ Council. In this critical hour, we owe these public authorities our unconditional obedience and must support them with all our might.” This is a very clear declaration of support for the Marxist revolution.
Einstein, however, did not continue in this radical vain. On 2 April 1921, he arrived for the first time in the United States, accompanied by Chaim Weizman, leader of the Zionist movement. Few people in the US at the time were aware of his pacifist activities, and the aim of his first visit was to obtain the finance needed for the construction of a Hebrew university in Jerusalem. His efforts were fruitful, mainly thanks to the generosity of a large portion of the American medical community. During his stay, he organised several conferences which raised his profile in the US.
On his return to Germany in 1922, he confided to Max Planck that: “Some cautious people have advised me to leave Berlin for a while and to avoid any public appearance in Germany. According to them, I have been added to a list of people that the Nationalists plan to assassinate.” Ten days later he wrote to another friend: “Following the dreadful assassination of Rathenau, there is much civil unrest in the city. There isn’t a day that goes by without somebody urging me to be careful. I have had to report myself absent and cancel all my lectures. Anti-Semitism is gaining ground.”
To understand the meaning of this remark, we have to remember that Germany, at the end of the war, was in the midst of a civil war in which the Bolshevik leaders – many of whom were Jewish, such as Rosa Luxembourg and Karl Liebknecht – were the catalysts.
So, in October 1922, Einstein came to Marseille and boarded a ship for the East. On the way back, he visited Palestine and Spain. On the 26 October 1922, he went to Colombo, on the island of what was then Ceylon, and noted in his travel-log: “Their lifestyle seems to be confined to the quite life of those who are submissive but nonetheless serene. Seeing these men live, one loses all respect for European men, who are far more degenerate, brutal, vulgar and grasping”. This contempt for the European male is very clearly detectable in all planetary literature and cinema.
In 1924, he was re-elected to the Committee on Intellectual Cooperation at the League of Nations. In April 1925, he went to Buenos-Aires. While in Montevideo, he wrote: “To hell with these great nations and their arrogance! If I had the power, I would break them up into tiny countries”
In 1930, he unequivocally declared his pacifism in a publication: “Those men who parade with glory in ranks, to the tune of a band, fill me with the most profound contempt. Do they really have any use for a brain? Shouldn’t their spinal cord be more than enough for them? The army, for me, is a shameful social deformity which we must try to cure as fast as possible.”
The same year at an event at New York, he gave a speech in which again he confirmed his “refusal to submit to any form of military duty. Where conscription exists, the pacifist must refuse military duty”. In addition, he reiterated his “uncompromising resistance to war”. In a speech given in Lyon in 1931, he continued in the same vein: “I ask every newspaper, priding itself on supporting pacifist ideals, to urge its readers to refuse military service. Even before the next Geneva World Disarmament Conference, I call upon every man and every woman, from the most humble to the most powerful, to declare that they will refuse to fight in any war or in the preparation of any form of armed conflict.”
Einstein, then, had the same pacifist beliefs as Dr Freud. Einstein’s correspondence with Freud reached a peak during the summer of 1932, when, under the auspices of International Institute of Intellectual Cooperation, the two men debated the causes of war and their remedies. In a letter to Freud, Einstein wrote that “international security implies that each nation must, to a certain extent, surrender its freedom of action, i.e. its sovereignty.”
Einstein’s active peace campaigning came to a sudden halt in 1933 when Hitler came to power. With the new political situation, Einstein made a complete U-turn. Accordingly, he stopped supporting anti-war movements and began supporting the rearmament of the Western powers. On the 5th May, he wrote to Paul Langevin that “I am, personally, convinced that it is still possible to deal with the German threat by imposing an economic blockade”
Immediately, then, he renounced his past as an active peace-campaigner to become a very vocal supporter of a war against Germany: “There is still time to crush those usurpers who have seized power”. On 6th June, he wrote to Stephen Wise, Rabbi of the Free Synagogue in New York, demanding that the American media launch a campaign to raise the public “awareness” of the war: “The American press must tell the public about the German military threat. It has a duty is to make people aware of the disaster that another European war will bring”.
On the 20th July, in another letter, this time to the Belgian Queen Mother, he stated: “Let me tell you in all candour that, if I were Belgian, I would not, at this hour, refuse to carry out my military service. I would graciously accept it because I would be totally convinced that my action would contribute to the protection of civilisation.”
The Bolshevik dictatorship, however, never led him to express such views. So it wasn’t the dictatorial nature of the German regime that sparked his opposition and bellicose ardour but rather its anti-Semitic nature. He wrote: “A bunch of gangsters have managed to seize power and terrorise the rest of the population, systematically indoctrinating youths (9).”
In an “unpublished” letter dating from 1935, he stated: “What really made Hitler leader of Germany was the vicious hatred that he had always felt for everything foreign, his curious dislike of a defenceless minority, the German Jews. Hitler could never stand their intellectual sensitivity which he considers to be – and for once I agree with him – alien to the German race”
On the 9 April 1938 he wrote : “It is, to say the least, worrying and appalling to witness the abolition of basic political and individual rights of a particular minority in certain nations, once proud of their cultural heritage … Germany’s barbaric persecution of its Jews and those of Austria has led it onto the path of destruction that I have just described.” When he wrote this, the Jews had indeed lost their right to work in various professions. This “barbaric persecution” was but the prelude to the true violence of Kristal Nacht, which took place sometime later on 9 November 1938.
On the 25 October 1942, at the height of the war, the Jewish Council for Russian War Relief, organised a dinner in honour of Einstein. As he was unable to attend for health reasons, he sent a message from his American home in Princeton. The message read: “I would finally like to say something of vital importance for us, the Jews. In Russia, equality for all cultural groups is not only written in law but it is also put into practice. For this reason, it seems to me only common sense to want to help Russia as best we can, by deploying all means at our disposal”
So here we have yet another example that demonstrates that Einstein reasoned first and foremost as a member of the Jewish community. His views on militarism, pacifism, democracy, Germany or Russia were but the reflection of specific interests which changed according to the circumstances. Pacifist during the 20s, he became a warmonger when Hitler came to power; pro-Soviet from the beginning, he became anti-Soviet when the Jews were removed from power after the Second World War. The millions of victims butchered by the Bolshevik regime during the inter-war years had never once, for one second, aroused Einstein’s sympathy.
In an interview, published in Free World, he stated: “I don’t see any other solution: either we destroy the German people, or we keep them under a repressive regime. I don’t think it is possible to educate them or to teach them how to think and behave democratically – not in the near future, at any rate.”
When Chaim Weizmann, an old friend of Einstein and the first Israeli president, died on 9 November 1952, Israel invited Einstein to become its second president. But he refused as he felt incapable of running a nation. As a Zionist, he gave his opinion on the Cold War: “We (Israel) should adopt a position of neutrality in the new conflict that divides East from West (10).”
But it is not really clear whether, in his letter of 1954 to Jospeh Lewis, he wrote as a political activist or as representative of his community: “You are right to want to fight against the superstition and power of the priesthood, and when we have defeated them – I do not doubt that one day we will have defeated them – it will seem even more clear to us that man must look to his own legacy, and nowhere else, in order to find the source of all his problems”
Ilya Ehrenbourg was Stalin’s Propaganda Minister during the Soviet war against Nazi Germany. In a large number of poems and texts, he very cleared called for the extermination of the Germans – all Germans, men, women, young and old. He even called for the murder of unborn German babies in their mothers’ wombs. He was, of course, number one on the Nazi death list. But after the war, he became an apostle of peace. This is what his biographer, Lilly Marcou, tell us: “Witness to the October Revolution, the Spanish Civil War, and the march of German troops into Paris, he is still on the front-line”. After the war, he became “one of the leaders of the peace movement (11) ”. Once we have crushed our enemies, we are all for peace…
(1) BHL, Saturday 25 June 2005, on the TV programme, broadcasted on the Franco-German channel, ARTE.
(2) Guy Konopnicki, La Faute des Juifs (Balland, 2002, pp. 17, 22.)
(3) Ibidem, pp. 128, 69.
(4) Ibidem, p. 191.
(5) Ibidem, p. 186.
(6) Elie Wiesel, Mémoires 2, Editions du Seuil, 1996, pp. 144, 146, 152.
(7) Albert Einstein, Le Pouvoir Nu Hermann, 1991.
(8) « Councils » is the translation of the Russian term « Soviet »
(9) “In 1939, the Gestapo employed 7 500 people compared to 366 000 employed by the NKVD in Bolshevik Russia (including those who manned the gulags).” Quoted from the book Du Passé faisons table rase, Histoire et mémoire du communisme en Europe ouvrage collectif, sous la direction de Stéphane Courtois, Robert Laffont, 2002, p. 219.
(10) Letter from Albert Einstein to Zvie Lurie, member of the Jewish Agency in Israel, 4 January 1955, cited in Le Pouvoir nu, op. cit.
(11) Lilly Marcou, Ilya Ehrenbourg, Plon, 1992, p. 11.