Monday,16 July, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1212, (4 -10 September 2014)
Monday,16 July, 2018
Issue 1212, (4 -10 September 2014)

Ahram Weekly

Meet the Khazars

How many among us have heard of the ancient civilisation of Khazar or ‘Chazaria’?

We have heard of the Huns, Magyars, Mongols and other races that are no more, but the Khazars?  Author Benjamin H Freedman in his book, “Facts are Facts” asks:  “What secret and mysterious power has been able for centuries to keep the origin and the history of the Khazars and the Khazar kingdom out of history texts, books and classroom courses in history throughout the world?”

It certainly has been history’s best kept secret, well concealed for many centuries.  Arthur Koestler, author of “The Thirteenth Tribe” calls it “the most cruel hoax which History has ever perpetrated”! The question is why such a formidable civilisation which flourished during the Dark Ages, became so obscured, until wide publicity in recent years. Now it is an incontestable historical fact, beyond the shadow of a doubt!

The book that brought back Khazaria to life was the controversial best seller “The Thirteenth Tribe”, (1976), by Arthur Koestler who advanced the theory that Ashkenazi Jews are not descended from biblical Israelites, but from the Khazars who converted to Judaism in the 8th century. During the 12th century, when the Khazar Empire was collapsing, its inhabitants migrated westwards into current Eastern Europe, such as the Ukraine, Poland, Belarus, Lithuania, Hungary and Germany.

The book provoked a mountain of angry responses and was fiercely criticised “by cowards and ideologues”, claiming it did not contain enough hard facts.

Koestler was not the first to espouse such a premise. He used the works of Douglas Morton Dunlop’s, “History of the Jewish Khazaria”, (1954), Abraham Poliak’s, “Khazaria” (1951), and Raphael Patak, “Myth of a Jewish Race”, (1971), among others. Koestler writes: “I have compiled the historical evidence which indicates that the bulk of Eastern Jewry and therefore World Jewry is of Khazar/Turkish rather than Semitic origin. I have tried to show that the evidence from anthropology concurs with history in refuting the popular belief in a Jewish race descended from the biblical tribe.”

In his “Pictorial History of the Jews”, (1953), Nathan Ausubel, writes: “Of all the astonishing experiences of the widely dispersed Jewish people, none was more extraordinary than that concerning Khazaria”.  An amalgam of Turkic clans, the Khazars were mostly idolaters and shamans who worshipped false gods, but in the year 760 AD their khagan or King Bulan, decided to end this paganism and adhere to a monotheistic religion. He chose Talmudism, or Judaism, not for religious reasons, but played it safe, not to anger the Christians or the Muslims. He forced his shamanistic tribe to convert to his religion.

 At its maximum extent Khazaria included southern Russia, northern Caucasus, eastern Ukraine, Crimea, western Kazakhstan and northern Uzbekistan, and covered about 1 million sq miles with a population from 10 to 20 million.

A war-like tribe they came from  Asia and invaded Eastern Europe in the 1st century. Their shield was a six-pointed star. Surrounded by savage and nomadic tribes, they had all the advantages of developed countries, a structured government, prosperous trading and a permanent army.

When Russia was converted to Christianity, the Khazars refused to join the Orthodox Church, and were consequently dealt a crushing blow by the Grand Duke of Kiev, who conquered the Khazars, and forced them out of their base in the Caucasus. Most of them migrated westward to Poland, Russia, Germany, and that is the explanation of the presence of Jews in Eastern Europe.

Professor Shlomo Sand published “The Invention of the Jewish People” in 2010, in which he supports Koestler’s theory that modern Jews do not descend from the ancient land of Israel, “but from groups that took on Jewish identity long afterwards. They use their ‘ethnos’ to justify their territorial ambitions.”

The Khazarian hypothesis caused a furor and was dismissed as just a theory. Arthur Koestler, having demolished the ancient, racial, ethnic claims to Palestine, was found dead with his wife in their apartment in London, allegedly killed by the Mossad.

 Now the theory has become a scientific reality.

Dr Eran Elhaik, a Jew, at the McKusick Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine, and his associates at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 2012, published by Oxford Press on behalf of the Society of Molecular Biology and Evolution, the results of their extensive DNA genetic research, concluding that 98 per cent of Israeli Jews are descendants of the Khazars. In an interview to Ha’aretz newspaper Dr Elhaik confirmed that “various groups of Jews in the world today do not share a common genetic origin. Their genes are largely Khazarian.”

Earlier DNA studies, especially the work of Dr Anella Oppenheim of Hebrew University, likewise found that less than 2 per cent of Jews living in Israel are Israeli.

Does that mean that Jews of America, Europe, Israel are not descendants of Father Abraham but of Father Bulan?

When Netanyahu cries out: “God gave this land to our Israelite forefathers”, he should be reminded that God and Science prove that he has no legitimate claim to this land.

God promised this land to the seed of Abraham!

“Behold I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews and are not, but do lie.”

                                  Book of Revelations: 3: 9  

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