The Campaign for Radical Truth in History http://www.hoffman-info.com presents:

A Debate:

Is Spielberg Guilty of Falsifying the Talmud in his Movie "Schindler's List"?

The Truth About the Racist, Chauvinist Talmud

Steven Spielberg's hallowed celluloid liturgy, Schindler's List not only defames every soldier in the German military as a homicidal robot, it also perpetrates a myth about the Jewish religion. The Jewish religion is based upon the Talmud, one of the most racist and chauvinist works ever committed to writing.

Of course Spielberg, being a cunning and deceptive propagandist, cannot reveal the fact of the Talmud's racism to his audience. Instead, he portrays it as a sort of manual for universal love. Hence, toward the end of the film in a key tear-jerking scene, Schindler's Jews present Schindler with a ring upon which is inscribed a quotation attributed to the Talmud, "He who saves a single life, saves the entire world."

This quotation also appears on posters advertising Schindler's List in video stores and schools, apparently having been selected as the film's motto, by its promoters.

However, the actual Talmud verse referred to in the movie says no such thing. Here is what the Talmud really says, "Whosoever preserves a single soul of Israel, Scripture ascribes to him as if he had preserved a complete world" (Tractate Sanhedrin 37a).

The Talmud only praises the saving of Jewish lives.

In response to our exposé of Spielberg's deceptive whitewash of the contents of the Talmud, Dene Bebbington, who obviously knows nothing about the Talmud, nevertheless decided to ignorantly repeat some obscurantist propaganda contradicting our information. Bebbington is apparently convinced that anything that emanates from a Zionist source in this area must be infallible and with the kind of painfully blind faith many such naive and easily duped people exhibit, repeated the propaganda around the Internet, as a supposedly definitive confirmation of our error and the "truth" of Spielberg's version.

Alan R. Critichley, the co-author of our original, critical review of Spielberg's movie (to access that review, "Swindler's Mist," go to http://www.hoffman-info.com/shindler.html ), has penned our rejoinder to Bebbington's anonymous writer.

Mr. Bebbington's preface and then the argument of his anonymous writer appear first. Mr. Critchley's rejoinder immediately follows.

--Michael A. Hoffman II


From Dene Bebbington:

Subject: The "Swindler's Mist" article on your web site

I notice that .... you have a copy of Michael Hoffman's "Swindler's Mist" article. Since you are interested in truth I would like to point out a serious error in something that this article asserts. Hoffman charges that Spielberg is falsifying the Talmud by using the quotation "He who saves a single life saves the whole world", he then goes on to explain why he thinks this is false by giving the quotation that instead refers to the life of a Jewish person.

Unfortunately the truth is that there are actually two versions of this quotation, including the one Spielberg uses, in different Talmudic books. Thus it is wrong for Hoffman to accuse Spielberg of falsifying what the Talmud says.

The information I have regarding this is attached below and comes from one of several posts on Usenet regarding this quotation, other posts said basically the same thing, but this one was the most detailed...

I make no opinion as to why Hoffman made this error, but would ask that you consider changing the article to reflect the truth, certainly there should be enough information in the attached post to facilitate any cross checking that you may like to do.

Regards, Dene Bebbington

This question came up some time ago on scj. I cannot find my original post on the subject in my files, so I will reproduce it in brief.

The source for this saying is in the Mishnah, Sanhedrin 4:5. It appears in several versions:

1. In the standard edition of the Mishnayot, the wording is: "Whoever destroys the life of a single human being [nefesh a`hat mi-bnei adam] ... it is as if he had destroyed an entire world; and whoever preserves the life of a single human being ... it is as if he had preserved an entire world".

2. In the Talmud Bavli, where this mishnah appears on Sanhedrin 37a, the wording is the same, except for the substitution of "life of a single Jew" [nefesh a`hat \mi-yisrael] for "life of a single human being".

3. In the Talmud Jerushalmi, Mishnah 5 is divided into subsections (Halakhot). In my edition the saying appears in Halakhot 12-13. Others divide Mishnah 5 differently: e.g. MTR locates it in Halakhah 9. It reads "destroys a single life" [ma'abed nefesh a`hat] and "preserves a single life" [meqayem nefesh a`hat]. There is no specific mention of either "human being" or "Jew", though the former is clearly implied.

The question is: Which is the original version? Was the limitation to Jewish lives there to begin with, and then taken out as a result of Church censorship? This is suggested in the book of corrigenda, Hesronot Ha-shas.

Alternatively, was the universal formulation the original one, and the limitation to Jewish lives introduced into it at some later date, perhaps in a period when particularly severe persecution of Jews generated a justified feeling of xenophobia?

The answer would seem to be obvious from the context, which is the same in all three versions. The citation is preceded by the words: "This is why Adam was created alone. It is to teach us that ...". A bit father down it reads: "When a man mints a number of coins from a single die, they are all identical; but the King of the kings of kings, the Holy One blessed be He, minted every human being from the die of the primal Adam, and not one of them is like any other".

Evidently, if the original had referred to the preservation of Jewish lives alone, the reference would have been to Abraham at the earliest. The repeated reference to Adam, progenitor of all mankind, makes it clear that the original must have referred to the preservation of human life in general.

This is aparently how the Rishonim (medieval commentators) understood it as well. Rambam adopts the Yerushalmi version, (3.) slightly altered, in Hilkhot Sanhedrin 12:3, but also cites the Bavli version (2. above) briefly in Hilkhot Rotzea`h 1:6. Hameiri too bases his commentary on the Yerushalmi version, illustrating "the destruction of a whole world" by pointing out that Cain's murder of Abel eliminated all of his victm's descendents at one fell swoop. Abel, like Adam was not Jewish; he was not even the ancestor of Jews.

The humanistic version was not universally accepted by the A`haronim (later commentators). MaHaRSh"A, for example, in Hidushei Agadot on Sanh.37a, stays with Version 2, and explains at some length why it is only important to save Jewish lives, even though the Mishnah bases the dictum on Adam's being the father of all mankind. I would be interested in learning what present-day Orthodox Judaism regards as the authentic reading.

SEVERAL ROADS TO THE SAME PLACE

A response to Dene Bebbington and an unknown writer

by Alan R. Critchley

Copyright©1997. All Rights Reserved

Dene Bebbington states that Michael A. Hoffman II and this writer have committed a "serious error" when we accuse Steven Spielberg of falsifying a Talmud reference in his movie "Schindler's List.".

In the Internet edition of our article, "Swindler's Mist," we stated: "Toward the end of the movie, Schindler is shown being presented with an inscribed gold ring by the Jews he rescued. We are told that the inscription is from the Talmud, `He who saves a single life, saves the entire world.' (This quotation also appears on posters advertising Schindler's List in video stores and schools, apparently having been selected as the film's motto by its promoters). The saying has a nice, warm, humanistic tenor, but there's just one problem: that's not what the Talmud says.

"The actual Talmud verse states, `Whosoever preserves a single soul of Israel, Scripture ascribes to him as if he had preserved a complete world' (Tractate Sanhedrin 37a). The Talmud only praises the saving of Jewish lives. In Spielberg's non-stop deception, even the documented contents of Jewish books are falsified."

Mr. Bebbington's response merely accuses us of being error. He presents no original research to prove his point, basing his attack on another article by an unknown author. Bebbington says that the unknown writer's article concerning the preceding Talmud passage demonstrates that we are in error. Since Bebbington has nothing more to say, this critique will focus on to the unknown author.

OUR RESPONSE TO THE UNKNOWN AUTHOR

The unknown author's article is a combination of fact and fraud.

In spite of this, it contains enough evidence to exonerate us of the charge of falsehood.

The Talmud is a two-part collection of the sayings of ancient Rabbis. These two parts consist of the Mishnah ("Teaching") and the Gemara ("Completion").

The Mishnah contains the earlier Rabbinic material, and the Gemara is later Rabbinic commentary on the Mishnah.

There are two editions of the Talmud, the Jerusalem Talmud and the Babylonian Talmud. Of these two, the Babylonian Talmud is authoritative for Orthodox Judaism, which regards it as divinely inspired.

The superiority of the Babylonian Talmud is so great, that "...when people now talk about the Talmud, they always mean the Babylonian Talmud. The authority of the Babylonian Talmud is also greater than that of the Jerusalem Talmud. In cases ofdoubt the former is decisive." (pg. 40, From Torah to Kabbalah, by R.C. Musaph-Andriesse, New York, Oxford University Press, 1982, emphasis in original text).

Further, "Thus the fuller Babylonian Talmud became the dominant work: when reference is made to the Talmud, the Babylonian Talmud is meant..." (pg. 105, "The Sacred Books of the Jews," by Harry Gersh, Stein and Day, New York, 1968).

Our article stated that the Talmud (i.e. the Babylonian Talmud) has: "Whosoever preserves a single soul of Israel, Scripture ascribes to him as if he had preserved a complete world."

Bebbington's unknown author states, "2. In the Talmud Bavli [the Babylonian Talmud; ARC], where this mishnah appears on Sanhedrin 37a, the wording is the same, except for the substitution of `life of a single Jew' (nefesh a'hat\mi-yisrael) for `life of a single human being'."

The unknown author cited by Mr. Bebbington thus says precisely the same thing we said in our article, proving that what we wrote is correct.

This also proves that Mr. Bebbington himself knows very little about Jewish literature, since he apparently is not even aware of basic Jewish terms or what they mean. We doubt he would have attacked us using the unknown author had he known that this author would agree with us.

Even though this point by itself is enough to prove us right, we shall continue in order to thoroughly examine related issues.

The unknown author, apparently embarrassed by the Talmud's assertion of the value of saving only Jewish life, attempts to cloud the issue by giving various amounts of vague, unsupported and untranslated information. For example:

1. He says that "1. In the standard edition of the Mishnayot, the wording is `Whoever destroys the life of a single human being (nefesh a 'hat mi-bnei adam) ... it is as if he had destroyed an entire world; and whoever preserves the life of a single human being ... it is as if he had preserved an entire world".

There are several things wrong with the above statement. First, the unknown author does not provide us with any specifications of what exactly is "the standard edition of the Mishnayot [the Mishnah, the first part of the Talmud; ARC]". The modern standard editions of the Mishnah in fact agree with our article, as we shall see.

THE STANDARD EDITIONS OF THE MISHNAH AS CONTAINED IN THE ONLY COMPLETE TRANSLATIONS OF THE TALMUD IN THIS CENTURY.

Mishnah 4.5, The Babylonian Talmud, Soncino English translation, translated by Jacob Shachter, University Press, Oxford, 1935, pg. 234, Sanhedrin 37a: "...whosoever destroys a single soul of Israel, Scripture imputes [guilt] to him as though he had destroyed a complete world; and whosoever preserves a single soul of Israel, Scripture ascribes [merit] to him as though he had preserved a complete world."

Mishnah 4.5, Der Babylonische Talmud, translated and provided with short explanations by Lazarus Goldschmidt, German translation of the Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin pgs. 169-170, Sanhedrin 37a: "...dass wenn jemand eine jisraelitische Seele vernichtet, es ihm die Schrift anrechnet, als hatte er eine ganze Welt vernichtet, und wenn jemand eine jisraelitische Seele erhalt, es ihm die Schrift anrechnet, als hatte er eine ganze Welt erhalten."

This German passage, which may be translated much the same way as the Soncino English cited above, also contains the restriction of a blessing reserved only to saving an Israelite soul ("eine jisraelitische Seele").

To the best of my knowledge, this Goldschmidt translation was the only complete, uncensored German translation of the Babylonian Talmud at the time of World War Two. It is worth noting that Goldschmidt specifically made his Talmud translation "according to the first uncensored Bromberg edition (Venice 1520-23)," comparing it to the famous uncensored (and handwritten) Munich Talmud text. Goldschmidt's Talmud for Sanhedrin was published in The Hague and Berlin in 1933.

Mishnah 4.5, The Talmud of Babylonia; An American Translation, translated by Jacob Neusner, Bavli Sanhedrin 4:5, Scholars Press, Chico, California, 1984, pg. 35: "J. ...whoever destroys a single Israelite soul is deemed by Scripture as if he had destroyed a whole world. K. And whoever saves a single Israelite soul [sic; ARC] is deemed by Scripture as if he had saved a whole world."

Talmud Bavli, The Schottenstein Edition, The Art Scroll Series, Published by Mesorah Publications, ltd. Brooklyn, New York, 1993 Tractate Sanhedrin, pg. 37a3: "...that whoever destroys a single life from Israel is considered by Scripture as if he had destroyed an entire world; and that whoever preserves a single life from Israel is considered by Scripture as if he had preserved an entire world."

This version is translated from "the classic `Romm Edition' of the Talmud, universally known as the Vilna Shas." (pgs. xxvi and xxvii) ("Shas" is a name for the Talmud; see below.) This authoritative and handsome edition presents the Talmud as the very word of God (pg. xxvi), and it does not even mention the universal version used by Spielberg, in the notes on the text.

Mishnah 4.5, The Talmud of Babylonia XXIII, Bavli Tractate Sanhedrin, by Jacob Neusner, Scholars Press, Atlanta, Georgia, 1994, pg. 183: "J. ...whoever destroys a single Israelite soul is deemed by Scripture as if he had destroyed a whole world. K. And whoever saves a single Israelite soul is deemed by Scripture as if he had saved a whole world."

STANDARD TRANSLATIONS OF THE MISHNAH ALONE

The Mishnah, translated by Herbert Danby, Oxford University Press, London, 1933, Sanhedrin 4.5, pg. 388:

"...if any man has caused a single soul to perish from Israel Scripture imputes it to him as though he had caused a whole world to perish; and if any man saves alive a single soul from Israel Scripture imputes it to him as though he had saved alive a whole world."

For many years in this century, Danby's Mishnah was the standard English translation of the Mishnah.

Gateway to the Mishnah, by Isidore Fishman, Jack Mazin Ltd, London 1955, Sanhedrin 4.5, pg. 156:

"...he who destroys one human life of Israel, it is accounted to him by Scripture as though he had destroyed a whole universe; and he who saves one human life of Israel, it is accounted to him by Scripture as though he had preserved a whole universe."

The Mishnah; A New Translation, by Jacob Neusner, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1988, Sanhedrin 4.5, pg. 591:

"J. ...whoever destroys a single Israelite soul is deemed by Scripture as if he had destroyed a whole world. K. And whoever saves a single Israelite soul is deemed by Scripture as if he had saved a whole world."

THE JERUSALEM TALMUD

Though it only of peripheral interest to our article (since we were not referring to the Jerusalem Talmud's version in the first place, and since it is not authoritative for Judaism anyway), we would like to note that although earlier translations and editions of the Jerusalem Talmud omit "of Israel", yet the most recent edition of passages from the Jerusalem Talmud has the version we listed.

The Two Talmuds Compared, by Jacob Neusner, III, Volume C, Tractate Sanhedrin, Scholars Press, Atlanta, Georgia, 1996, Yerushalmi Sanhedrin 4:10 A, pg. 95:

"...whoever destroys a single Israelite soul is deemed by Scripture as if he had destroyed a whole world. And whoever saves a single Israelite soul is deemed by Scripture as if he had saved a whole world."

THE PROBLEM OF ALTERNATE TEXTS

Various editions of the Talmud mention that for many passages of the Babylonian Talmud, there exist alternative texts. Though the editors of the Talmud agree that the original text of Sanhedrin should read "a single soul of Israel", yet textual notes in many mention that some texts of the Talmud omit "of Israel", resulting in a text that universalizes the verse as follows: "whoever destroys a single soul is deemed by Scripture as if he had destroyed a whole world, etc."

That this rendering is disproved by the Talmud itself is obvious (see below), but the proper explanation of how such an errant text exists is as follows.

After the Talmud was finally committed to writing, some of its more offensive passages eventually became known to those outside of Judaism. In the 1400's the printing press was invented; and because the dominant governments in Europe were mostly Christian (at least in profession), the authorities became involved in more stringent censorship of the text of the Talmud and other Rabbinic writings.

Permission had to be granted to print many Hebrew books, and this permission was withheld unless the books were censored to bring them in line with Christian beliefs.

Thus, passages in Jewish sacred writings which said Jesus the Christ was heretical, or passages which insulted Mary, or Christians, or Gentiles, had to be changed or omitted entirely. In some cases, editions of the Talmud which contained offensive passages were destroyed by the Church.

At the same time, however, some Talmud manuscripts faithful to the uncensored original, were saved from destruction (like the Munich Talmud, for example), while other Rabbinic authorities marked new editions so that readers would know something was omitted, printing the omitted sections separately. In this way, they hoped to circumvent the censorship.

Mr. Bebbington's unknown author, knows about the publication of omitted sections, yet he handles it in a deceitful manner, probably because of his embarrassment for the Talmud.

Observe his comments: "The question is: Which is the original version? Was the limitation to Jewish lives there to begin with, and then taken out as a result of Church censorship? This is suggested in the book of corrigenda, Hesronot Ha-shas."

Note that the unknown author does not translate "Hesronot Ha-shas".

A translation would be: "That which is removed from the six orders", or "That which is removed from the Talmud."

Concerning Ha-shas (the shas), The Censorship of Hebrew Books, by William Popper, KTAV Publishing House, Inc., New York, 1969, pg. 59 says, "In Aramaic, `Shitta Sidhre', `six orders,' from the six divisions into which the Mishnah is divided. The term is abbreviated sh''s (shas), and is often used to designate the Talmud."

Hesronot Ha-shas has been recently reprinted in 1989 by Sinai Publishing of Tel-Aviv. On page 44 of this antique reprint, Hesronot Ha-shas specifically lists the original text of the ancient Babylonian Talmud as follows: "a soul from Israel".

It specifically lists "from Israel" as having been removed due to censorship. In the face of this Hebrew evidence, which proves us correct, our unknown author feels the necessity to soften its factual listing into a mere "suggestion".

Are there texts which have the universal version? Yes. But all modern translations of the Talmud relegate the universal version to footnote status in view of the Hebrew evidence on censorship. The Christian censors forced the Jewish publishers to omit "of Israel", in order to give the Talmud a less Jewish-chauvinistic, anti-Gentile meaning.

Popper's censorship information (above, pg. 58-59), states that an omission like the one we are discussing is not at all unusual: "It was not always that long passages, such as those instanced, were censored on these various charges, but often single words alone were omitted; ...Often, in these cases, another method of correction was used in place of omission--substitution."

Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz, the translator of the latest modern English version of the Babylonian Talmud, says, "Indeed, almost every passage dealing with non-Jews must be suspected of having undergone some change." (Talmud Reference Guide, by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz, Random House, New York, 1989, pg. 50)

To give a humorous example, we shall now list a Hebrew prayer: "Guardian of the holy people, Guard the remnant of thy holy nation, Nor let a holy people perish."

Because the word "people" in Hebrew is "goy", sometimes used negatively of Gentiles, the censors made the later printed edition of the prayer to read as follows: "Guardian of the holy Turks, Guard the remnant of the Turks, Nor leave the holy Turks to perish!" (Popper, pg. 130)

In spite of the fact that Hebrew editions of this prayer exist praising the Turks, no scholar believes they represent the true Hebrew text when the evidence is presented. It is similar to the Sanhedrin passage under discussion in our article; we are aware of no Jewish publisher or editor of the Talmud who defends the universal text as the original.

THE REFERENCE TO ADAM IN ALL VERSIONS OF THE TALMUD

The unknown author makes the point of checking the context of the passage in Sanhedrin 37a, and says the following:

"Which is the original version? Was the limitation to Jewish lives there to begin with, and then taken out as a result of Church censorship? ...Alternatively, was the universal formulation the original one, and the limitation to Jewish lives introduced into it at some later date...? The answer would seem to be obvious from the context, which is the same in all three versions.

The citation is preceded by the words:

`This is why Adam was created alone. It is to teach us that...'. A bit father [sic] down it reads: `When a man mints a number of coins from a single die, they are all identical; but the King of the kings of kings, the Holy One blessed be He, minted every human being from the die of the primal Adam, and not one of them is like any other'.

Evidently, if the original had referred to the preservation of Jewish lives alone, the reference would have been to Abraham at the earliest. The repeated reference to Adam, progenitor of all mankind, makes it clear that the original must have referred to the preservation of human life in general."

The above argument appears convincing, until other related Talmud verses are scrutinized.

The fact is, the Talmud specifically defines all who are not Jews as non-human animals, and specifically lists Gentiles as not being descendants of Adam. We will now list some of the Talmud passages which relate to this topic.

Kerithoth 6b:

OR USES OIL OF ANOINTING. Our Rabbis have taught: He who pours the oil of anointing over cattle or vessels is not guilty; if over gentiles [Hebrew: goyim] or the dead, he is not guilty. The law relating to cattle and vessels is right, for it is written: "Upon the flesh of man [Hebrew: adam] shall it not be poured [Exodus 30:32]"; and cattle and vessels are not man [adam]. Also with regard to the dead, [it is plausible] that he is exempt, since after death one is called corpse and not a man [adam]. But why is one exempt in the case of gentiles [goyim]; are they not in the category of man [adam]?--No, it is written: "And ye my sheep, the sheep of my pasture, are man [adam] [Ezekiel 34:31]": Ye are called man [adam] but gentiles [goyim] are not called man [adam].

In the above passage, the Rabbis are discussing the Mosaic law which forbids applying holy oil to men. In the discussion, the Rabbis state that it is not a sin to apply the holy oil to gentiles, since gentiles are not human beings (literally, adam).

Yebamoth 61a: It was taught: And so did R. Simeon ben Yohai state [61a] that the graves of gentiles [goyim] do not impart levitical uncleanness by an ohel [standing or bending over a grave], for it is said, "And ye my sheep the sheep of my pasture, are men [adam]" [Ezekiel 34:31]; you are called men [adam] but the idolaters are not called men [adam].

The Mosaic law states that touching a human corpse or grave imparts uncleanness to those who touch it. But the Talmud here teaches that if a Jew touches the grave of a gentile, it does not make him unclean, since gentiles are not human (literally, adam).

Baba Mezia 114b: Said he [Rabbah] to him: Art thou not a priest: why then dost thou stand in a cemetery?--He replied: Has the Master not studied the laws of purity? For it has been taught: R. Simeon ben Yohai said: The graves of gentiles [goyim] do not defile, for it is written, "And ye my flock, the flock of my pastures, are men [adam]" [Ezekiel 34:31]; only ye are designated men [adam].

A Jewish priest was standing in a graveyard. When asked why he was standing there in apparent violation of the Mosaic law, he replied that it was permissible, since the law only prohibits Jews from coming into contact with the graves of humans [adam], and he was standing in a gentile graveyard.

Since the so-called Scriptural proof text (Ezekiel 34:31) repeatedly cited in the above three Talmud passages in reality does not prove that only Jews are human, it is self-evident that the Talmudic sages who asserted the preceding absurdities about Gentiles were already anti-Gentile racists or ideologues who, in desperate search of some proof of their position, distorted an Old Testament passage in order to justify their bigotry. Their ideology came first, their "proof" second.

Berakoth 58a

R. Shila administered lashes to a man who had intercourse with an Egyptian woman. The man went and informed against him to the Government, saying: There is a man among the Jews who passes judgment without the permission of the Government. An official was sent to [summon] him. When he came he was asked: Why did you flog that man? He replied: Because he had intercourse with a she-ass.

They said to him: Have you witnesses? He replied: I have. Elijah thereupon came in the form of a man and gave evidence. They said to him: If that is the case he ought to be put to death! He replied: Since we have been exiled from our land, we have no authority to put to death; do with him what you please.

While they were considering his case, R. Shila exclaimed, "Thine, Oh Lord, is the greatness and the power" [1 Chronicles 29:11] What are you saying? they asked him. He replied: What I am saying is this: Blessed is the All-Merciful who has made the earthly royalty on the model of the heavenly, and has invested you with dominion, and made you lovers of justice.

They said to him: Are you so solicitous for the honor of the Government? They handed him a staff and said to him: You may act as judge. When he went out that man said to him: Does the All-Merciful perform miracles for liars?

He replied: Wretch! Are they not called asses? For it is written: "Whose flesh is as the flesh of asses" [Ezekiel 23:20]. He noticed that the man was about to inform them that he had called them asses. He said: This man is a persecutor, and the Torah has said: If a man comes to kill you, rise early and kill him first. So he struck him with the staff and killed him. He then said: Since a miracle has been wrought for me through this verse, I will expound it.

My apologies for subjecting our readers to the preceding lengthy drivel, but it is best to include all of it to demonstrate its depravity. In addition to having Elijah float down from heaven to deceive the gentile court, it teaches that gentiles are in reality animals, so that Rabbi Shila (and Elijah) did not really lie at all. It also teaches that anyone (even a Jewish man) who reveals this great Talmud truth deserves execution, since revealing it makes gentiles angry and causes persecution of Israel.

We can only rejoice that the vast majority of Jews today do not follow such heinous teachings; only a few openly espouse the Talmud as divinely inspired, (although unfortunately these few are sometimes to be found in influential leadership positions).

Parenthetically, the above Scripture proof-text does not prove that gentiles are not human, being animals. The Ezekiel passage only says that some Egyptians had large sex organs and copious emissions. This does not in any way prove or even connote that the Egyptians referred to were animals.

Having sufficiently proven our point from the Talmud, namely that the Talmud teaches that gentiles are not human [Hebrew: Adam], and are really animals, we will list a few other passages which expound on the Ezekiel 23:20 "proof text", allowing our readers to research them on their own: Arakin 19b, Berakoth 25b, Niddah 45a, Shabbath 150a, Yebamoth 98a.

The original text of Sanhedrin 37a applies God's approval only to the saving of Jewish lives. This is demonstrable by referring to Jewish books such as the Hesronot Ha-shas.

But Bebbington's unknown author claims that the various Talmud texts mentioning Adam, prove that the passage includes gentiles among those worthy of having their lives saved, since gentiles are of Adam. This is not true because Talmud itself teaches that gentiles are not human [Adam], but indeed are only animals. So this line of reasoning is completely fallacious.

As another example of the unknown writer's deception, we will examine the very first example of post-Talmudic commentators which he mentions: Rambam:

"Moses Maimonides is considered the greatest codifier and philosopher in Jewish history. He is often affectionately referred to as the Rambam, after the initials of his name and title, Rabenu Moshe Ben Maimon (Our Rabbi, Moses son of Maimon)." "(Maimonides' Principles," Edited by Aryeh Kaplan, Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, New York, 1975, pg. 3)

Here is what our unknown antagonist says: "Rambam adopts the Yerushalmi version, (3.) slightly altered, in Hilkot Sanhedrin 12:3, but also cites the Bavli version (2. above) briefly in Hilkot Rotzeach 1:6."

What Bebbington's unknown writer does not say however, is what Rambam actually taught about saving people's lives, especially about saving the lives of gentiles and Christians, or even Jews who dared to deny the divine inspiration of the Talmud.

Maimonides, Mishnah Torah, Moznaim Publishing Corporation, Brooklyn, New York, 1990, Chapter 10, English Translation, pg. 184:

Accordingly, if we see an idolater being swept away or drowning in the river, we should not help him. If we see that his life is in danger, we should not save him.

It is, however, forbidden to cause one of them to sink or push him into a pit or the like, since he is not waging war against us. To whom does the above apply? To gentiles [Hebrew: goyim, found on pg. 185]. The Hebrew text of the Feldheim 1981 edition of Mishnah Torah has this also.

Immediately after Maimonides' admonition that it is a duty for Jews not to save a drowning or perishing gentile, he informs us of the Talmudic duty for Jews towards Christians, and also towards Jews who deny the Talmud.

Maimonides, Mishnah Torah, Chapter 10 English Translation, pg. 184 "It is a mitzvah [religious duty; ARC], however, to eradicate Jewish traitors, minnim, and apikorsim, and to cause them to descend to the pit of destruction, since they cause difficulty to the Jews and sway the people away from God, as did Jesus of Nazareth and his students, and Tzadok, Baithos, and their students. May the name of the wicked rot."

The commentary accompanying the preceding statement of Maimonides mentions that Jesus was an example of a min (plural: minnim). The commentary also states that the followers of Tzadok were defined as those Jews who deny the truth of the Talmud and who uphold only the written law (the Pentateuch, i.e. the Old Testament).

According to Maimonides' Principles, pg. 5, Maimonides "spent twelve years extracting every decision and law from the Talmud, and arranging them all into 14 systematic volumes. The work was finally completed in 1180, and was called Mishnah Torah, or `Code of the Torah'."

Mr. Bebbington's unknown author is guilty of fraud, because he refers to Maimonides, the greatest Talmud codifier, without stating what Maimonides said the Talmud teaches concerning the duty to save life.

It is not at all surprising, though, that Maimonides said exactly the opposite of what our unknown writer asserts concerning the Talmud. Maimonides asserted that it is the duty of Jews to save only Jews. Ordinary gentiles are to be allowed to perish, but not actively killed, except during war; while Christians and Jewish so-called heretics are to be executed.

And there is more: "As for Gentiles, the basic talmudic principle is that their lives must not be saved, although it is also forbidden to murder them outright. The Talmud itself [Abodah Zarah 26b] expresses this in the maxim `Gentiles are neither to be lifted [out of a well] nor hauled down [into it]'.

Maimonides explains [in Mishnah Torah 4:11]: `As for Gentiles with whom we are not at war ... their death must not be caused, but it is forbidden to save them if they are at the point of death; if, for example, one of them is seen falling into the sea, he should not be rescued, for it is written: `neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy fellow [Leviticus 19:16]'--but [a Gentile] is not thy fellow." (Jewish History, Jewish Religion, by Israel Shahak, Pluto Press, London, Boulder, Colorado, pg. 80, emphasis in original)

It is not too surprising that Maimonides would have taught this concerning saving the lives of Gentiles.

Maimonides taught in another section of the Mishnah Torah that Gentiles are not human: "Man alone, and not vessels, can contract uncleanness by carriage. ...The corpse of a Gentile, however, does not convey uncleanness by overshadowing. ...a Gentile does not contract corpse uncleanness; and if a Gentile touches, carries, or overshadows a corpse he is as one who did not touch it. To what is this like? It is like a beast which touches a corpse or overshadows it. And this applies not to corpse uncleanness only but to any other kind of uncleanness: neither Gentiles nor cattle are susceptible to any uncleanness." (The Code of Maimonides, Book Ten, translated by Herbert Danby, Yale University Press, New Haven, 1954, pgs. 8-9)

Small wonder, then, that our opponent, Bebbington's unknown author, speeds past the greatest of all Talmud scholars without bothering to mention his teachings on saving lives.

In conclusion:

1. Mr. Dene Bebbington says nothing to refute us; he leaves that to his unknown writer.

2. Mr. Hoffman and this writer stated that the Talmud (i.e., the Babylonian Talmud) text of Sanhedrin 37a restricts the duty to save life to saving only Jewish lives. The unknown writer says this very same thing, without Dene Bebbington even being aware of it.

3. The censorship book, written by Jews (Hesronot Ha-shas), states that the Talmud texts which have "Whoever destroys the life of a single human being ... it is as if he had destroyed an entire world; and whoever preserves the life of a single human being ...it is as if he had preserved an entire world," have been censored (tampered with). In other words, these are not the authentic texts of the Talmud and what Steven Spielberg quoted in his movie is not from the Talmud, and is precisely what we said it was, falsification intended to give a humanistic gloss to the Talmud which is, in its essence, racist and chauvinist.

The authentic, original Talmud text has "a single soul of Israel". This is upheld by the modern editions of the Talmud.

4. The most recent translation of even the Jerusalem Talmud restricts the blessing for saving life to saving only a Jewish life.

5. Though the Talmud passage at issue (Sanhedrin Mishnah 4.5/Sanhedrin 37a) mentions Adam, this does not prove the passage's original intent was universal, since the Talmud elsewhere teaches that gentiles are not Adam, but are in fact animals.

6. The greatest of all Talmud codifiers, Moses Maimonides, taught the exact opposite of Bebbington's unknown author: Gentiles on the point of death should not be saved, and Christians and Jewish "apostates" should be executed.

All roads in Talmud research lead to the same conclusion: the Talmud absolutely repudiates the idea that saving Gentile lives is on the same level as saving Jewish lives. Therefore it is apparent that Steven Spielberg's movie "Schindler's List" falsifies the text and teaching of the Talmud.

A DOUBLE STANDARD

I wish to add a comment on a subject mentioned by Bebbington's unknown author while discussing the original text of Sanhedrin 37a. He states:

"The question is: Which is the original version? Was the limitation to Jewish lives there to begin with, and then taken out as a result of Church censorship? ...Alternatively, was the universal formulation the original one, and the limitation to Jewish lives introduced into it at some later date, perhaps in a period when particularly severe persecution of Jews generated a justified feeling of xenophobia?"

I have reserved Mr. Bebbington's author's statement for my conclusion, to demonstrate that the unknown author is guilty of upholding a double standard,thus he is a hypocrite.

The unknown writer says that if the Jews being persecuted by Gentiles decided that Gentiles no longer needed to be saved from death, this "feeling of xenophobia" was "justified".

If Jews are persecuted, then they are "justified" in not saving the lives of Gentiles they meet, as well as in teaching other Jews not to save the lives of Gentiles. This most awful teaching is mentioned by our opponent, who in the rest of his writings attempts to prove that the Talmud favors saving the lives of Gentiles. His two-step reasoning is as follows:

1. The Talmud favors saving Gentile lives. 2. Even if it doesn't, it is "justified", since the Gentiles were persecutors of the Jews.

Would our unknown writer or Mr. Bebbington adopt the same tack concerning Gentiles persecuted by Jews?

For example, the Ukrainian hetman Boghdan Chmelnicki was persecuted by Poles and their Jewish allies.

He lived peaceably with the Poles and Jews until he was horribly provoked into war, when he mercilessly slaughtered Jews and Catholics within his grasp.

Would Mr. Bebbington or his ally consider Chmelnicki's conduct as "justified"? We think not.

For another example, it is a fact mentioned by a Jewish encyclopedia that after Jews viciously murdered many Romans and Greeks c. 120 A.D. in North Africa and the Mediterranean, many Gentiles retaliated by murdering thousands of Jews. Is this conduct "justified"?

In WWII, when the German army occupied the city of Lvov, Poland, hundreds of Ukrainians were found slaughtered by the Soviet Secret Police. Many of these Communist secret police were observed to be Jewish. The inhabitants of Lvov (and members of the German army too) immediately began to murder hundreds of Jews living in the area. Is this conduct "justified" by Mr. Bebbington or his unknown writer? The answer is obvious: neither of them would justify any Gentile oppression of Jews, even if preceded by gross persecution. And neither would we.

But if Gentiles persecute some Jews, and those Jews decide that Gentiles in general are not worthy of being saved from death, that is just all right with the unknown author. In addition to being in error, he is a hypocrite.

Alan R. Critchley

Copyright ©1997. All Rights Reserved.

Mr. Critchley's writing is distributed by The Campaign for Radical Truth in History

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