Bitter Attacks Against the Jews Based on a Long-Exploded Story Made by Menshikoff and Others---Lutostansky's Book of Slanders Finds High Indorsement
Russia: Patience, you two! It's his turn now!" Cartoon in The London Jewish Chronicle,
FOR several months the six million Jews in the Russian Empire have been living under the shadow of fear of renewed massacres.
Ever since the Duma voted to have the Jewish question elaborated by a special commission with a view of abolishing the Pale of Settlement that is, of opening ail Russia to the Jews who are at present caged in certain provinces the reactionary forces, the Black Hundred organisations, through, their organs and at their meetings, and in their churches, have been inciting the Russian populace against the Jews. The old myth was revived for this purpose. The Jews of Russia are being accused of having murdered a Christian boy for ritual use.
The blood libel against the Jews, which cropped up from time to time in various countries for centuries, has long been established as a myth invented by anti-Semites. Even in Russia Alexander I, in 1817, and Nicholas I issued ukases prohibiting the prosecution of so-called ritual murder cases "to make an end to the prejudice that the Jews use Christian blood for ritual purposes."
And yet from time to time these stories are circulated in Russia by reactionary priests and reactionary journalists, encouraged and even subsidised by the Russian Court party.
In the beginning of May of this year The Novoye Vremya, Russia's leading semi-official newspaper, the same Journal whose editorials are so frequently quoted in European and American newspapers, published the following article by M. Menshikoff, one of the prominent editors of The Novoye Vremya. Menshikoff used to be a Liberal and a Tolstoyan. but for the past ten years he has sold himself to Suvorin, has attacked every progressive movement in Russia, and has developed a mania for slandering the Jewish people in the vilest manner.
"Just before the Jewish Passover," wrote Menshikoff, "the twelve-year-old boy Yuschinsky was lost. He was going to school, passed the Jewish settlement, but never returned. His body was found in a cave near the house of a Jew. From all the numerous symptoms the people of Kiev have come to the conclusion that the boy was a victim of the Khassidlm.
The Khassidim are a Jewish sect which sprang up in Poland in the eighteenth century and which attracted about one-half of the Jewish masses. In the well-known accusatory book by Lutostansky the following circumstances of ritual murders are described. They are, it is said, committed on the eve of Passover for the purpose of securing "Passover" blood. This is used for the preparation of matzos. It is also poured into wine and is used for numerous other purposes.
"Here, then," continues this vile slander, "is another of the advantages for spreading the Jews all over Russia. From the 'Pale' this religious custom of murdering Christian children for the preparation of their Passover will come over to us. When the Jews will attain equal rights, when their audacity will reach the highest point, there is no doubt that the 'ritual' murders of Christian children win grow more frequent.
"Evidently 'the holy Russian land of Kiev' has already entered in that sphere of bliss which will set in after the Pale of Settlement has been abolished. Right under the shadow of the majestic Andrew Cathedral, on Podolya, the boy Andrey Yuschinsky, frightened to death, was slowly tortured by devout 'Yldden,' and all Christendom, beginning with Apostle Andrew, who raised the cross over Kiev, could not help the unfortunate. The great empire to which the boy belonged could not help him. the so-called 'four-thousand-year-old' civilisation of which the Jews are boasting could not help blm. The bitter facts are crying unto heaven that law and the prophets are one and Jewish fanaticism quite another matter. The Commandment of the Jews says 'Thou shalt not kill!' and their bestialized mind says 'Kill!"
The article winds up with an appeal to the people of Kiev to do their duty, saying that the death of the Christian boy is upon the conscience of all Russia.
One of the contributing editors of the newspaper where this article appeared Is A. Stolypin, the brother of the present premier of Russia.
The entire reactionary press, led by The Novoye Vremya, the Russkoye Znamya, (the Czar's personal organ,) the Koloko, and the Zemschina, caught up this accusation against the Jews, in connection with the Yuschinsky case, based on the book of Ippolit Lutostansky, whose ridiculous slanders of the Jews have been published on moneys furnished him for that purpose by persons ranking very high in the Russian bureaucracy.
The curious coincidence of the whole affair is that while ritual murder accusations have long been established as a libel on the Jewish people, Lutostansky's description of how alleged ritual murders are committed has been minutely followed by those who murdered the boy for the purpose of accusing the entire Jewish people.
To those who know how the Black Hundred organizations, under the direction of Dr. Dubrovin, a personal friend of the Czar, murdered the members of the first Duma, Herzenstein and Yollos, such methods will not seem surprising.
Ippolit Lutostansky, now about 76 years old, wrote his work "On the Use of Blood by Jews for Ritual Purposes" some forty years ago. Several years later be came out with a statement to the effect that he had erred in his accusations against the Jews. He then approached the Jews and wanted a large sum of money for retracting his former statements. But the Jews declined to pay him for his views. So he commenced to publish a series of volumes called "The Talmud and the Jews," in which he falsified quotations from the Talmud and perverted the interpretation of Jewish customs and rituals. His books are full or the most vile and malicious attacks upon the Jews and Judaism.
The sixth volume of Lutostansky's "The Talmud and the Jews" appeared recently and by way of preface it contains a number of letters which show who are encouraging, supporting, and distributing his publications. Among the letters congratulating Lutostansky upon his work against the Jews are some by the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna, Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich, Grand Duke Alexander Michaelovich, Gen. D. Can, Gen. Trepov, the Ministries of War and ot Education.
Recently a letter from Lutostansky was published in the Russian press saying that the late Czar Alexander III had thanked him for his works on ritual murder and presented him with a ring; that the Commander-in-Chief of the gendarmes had distributed his book to all his subordinates, and closed the Moscow synagogue, for the reply of Rabbi Minor to his accusations. The letter, not intended for publication, stated how he had published a book denying the ritual accusation, but having received no pecuniary support from the Jews, he was obliged to return to his anti-Semitic, propaganda,
His sixth volume of "The Talmud" Is devoted entirely to an attack upon the Jews, upon the progressive parties in Russia which side with the Jews, and upon the first Duma.
Lutostansky declares that the massacres of the Jews in Kishineff and Byalistok were started by the Jews themselves and that the Jewish people were planning to divide Russia among themselves.
Speaking of the Talmud and the Bible, Lutostansky says:
"Built upon falsehood and contempt for work; filled with immoral and anarchistic tendencies; inimical to all ideals, and worshipping nothing but wealth, the Talmud Is the offspring of the most contemptible of ail revolutions which ever degraded mankind by its stupidity and bloodshed! Insolence and cunning, crafty casuistry, and soulless formality, . combined with a deep revolutionary spirit and extreme ignorance---such were the fundamental traits of the Pharisees. Not stopping before any inventions of their imaginations, falsifying customs. inventing legends, devising the most absurd methods of interpreting the law according to their will, and for the purpose of attaining power, they have evolved the essence of unprincipled Judaism--the Talmud. Thus they have doomed the Jewish mind forever to fruitlessness. and the Jewish soul to cruelty and egoism.
"We must ask the Jews all to go back to Palestine, but as they will not go of their free will, we must force them to do It, for their right place is in their former kingdom of Palestine. Let them get their rights from the Sultan, not from Russia, where they are strangers."
And then, in the same volume, which la supposed to be a work on the Talmud, Lutostansky, complimented, encouraged, and paid by Russian Czars and Grand Dukes, submits the following solution of the Jewish question in Russia:
"The Russian people, realizing their position and having the ability to maintain it, availing themselves of their right to be the masters of Russia, could in the course of one day crush the desires of the Jews and force the Jews to bow to the will of the Autocratic Master of Russia, but the Russians hare chosen another way of solving the Jewish question."
And the self-confessed charlatan declares himself an adherent of Zionism, saying that Russia would make any sacrifice to help the Jews settle in Palestine and form an autonomous State of their own.
"Therefore," he goes on, "the Russian people expect their representatives in the Duma to see to it that all the Jews living in Russia shall at once be recognized as foreigners, without any rights and privileges allowed other foreigners. Such a measure, in connection with other restrictive measures, would surely hasten their removal to their own kingdom."
He then enumerates a series ot restrictions that should be introduced:
"The Jews should not be admitted to the army, the navy, neither as regulars nor as volunteers.
The Jews should not be permitted to practice as military surgeons, as assistant surgeons, or as druggists.
"Military service should be substituted by a fine, and these fines should be paid by the entire Jewish population.
"The Pale of Settlement should be made narrower. All laws tending to widen the Pale ot Settlement should be abolished. All privileges granted to Jews because of their education or because of their occupations should be withdrawn. No Jews should be permitted to live in seaports.
"Jewish children should not be permitted to attend schools attended by Christian children. Jews should also be prohibited from establishing schools of their own.
"Jews should be forbidden to teach in Government or private schools.
"Jews should not be permitted to hold any Government or civil office.
"Jews should not be permitted to get any concessions and should not be connected with any Government contracts.
"Jews should not be employed on any steamship or railway in Russia.
"Jews should not be permitted to vote, and under no circumstances should they be permitted to serve in the Duma or the Council of the Empire. Nor should they be allowed to participate in the elections.
"Jews should not be permitted to have drugstores of their own, to be druggists, or to work as clerks in such stores.
"Jews In any way connected with revolutionists should bo dealt with harshly, and 'their property should be confiscated.
"Jews should not be permitted to act as editors or publishers of periodical publications. .
"Jews should not be permitted to have bookstores and printing shops.
"All foreign Jews, citizens of other countries, should be forbidden to enter Russia."
He then continues his inflammatory outbursts against the Jews in terms that are unprintable, and all this in a volume supposed to be a study of the Talmud.
In another chapter the anti-Semitic slanderer attacks England because he believes the English people to be the lost tribes of Israel.
"The English people are pure-blooded Israelites," declares Lutostansky. "In ancient days they used to be red-haired, as we see the types described in the Old and New Testaments.. The characteristics of the Israelites are well-known all over the world, and the same characteristics are peculiar to the English people. They do not differ in the slightest degree. The universal business greed of the English people, their greedy politics based on business and many other traits make them unlike other European nations. There have been for some time suspicious kinship and similarity between the Anglo-Saxons and the Jews.
"The English people are the lost tribes of Israel. The lion of Judah became the emblem ot England and the harp of David is to this day the emblem of Ireland.
"But not only are the English Kings direct descendants of the Jewish Kings, they even sit on the throne of David, on which all Jewish Kings used to ha crowned. The throne is made of the rock on which Jacob slept when he dreamed of the ladder and when God promised him a kingdom. That rock was brought by the prophet Jeremiah to Ireland, whence it was removed first to Scotland and then to London.
"North America is settled by the tribe of Manasseh.
"The English people in many ways resemble the Jews. Their type is the same, their manner of speech the same, and, above all, the fundamental trait of both nations is trading. Then, the great respect of the English people for the Bible betrays their kinship to the ancient Israelites.
"The English people," concludes tho rabid anti-Semite, "arousing the unanimous indignation of the entire civilized world, have made themselves by their instincts and inclinations deformed monsters among the cultured and civilised nations of Europe. There is a saying, 'Every family has its black sheep.' But every deformity may be explained, and this is explained by the fact that the English people have descended from the Jews."
Lutostansky's works, written in impossible Russian, containing innumerable pornographic stories, perversions and vile slanders, malicious attacks, and incendiary appeals to the Ignorant mob are distributed by the servants of the Russian autocracy in the army and the military academies, are sanctioned by the Ministry of Education and the War Department in Russia, and Czars and Grand Dukes, and Princes, and Princesses help the publication of these works.
Here are a few of the letters reproduced in the sixth volume of Lutostansky's "The Talmud and the Jews":
From the Grand Duke and Crown Prince, in April. 1876. To Ippolit Lutostansky: His Imperial Majesty, the Crown Prince accepts favorably your work entitled "The Question of the Use of Christian Blood for Religious Purposes, In Connection with the Attitude of Judaism Toward Christianity," and has Instructed me to extend to you the thanks of his Imperial Majesty. Marshal of the Court Zinoviev. Countersigned by the Adjutant of his Majesty, Col. Vasllkovsky.
From the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna, - I have the honor to inform you that the copy of your work on the Talmud was received and accepted by her Imperial Majesty with thanks. Signed by the Secretary of her Imperial Majesty, March 6, 1908.
From the Crown Prince, the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich, a brother of the Czar, addressed to Lutostansky, on Nov. T, 1902. His Imperial Majesty the Crown Prince and Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich has favorably accepted your work "The Talmud and the Jews," and has asked me to convey to you his sincere gratitude for this work.
From the Grand Duchess Alexandra, April 8. 1903. - Her Imperial Highness the Grand Duchess Alexandra has the honor to inform you that your work submitted to his Imperial Highness the Grand Duke Constantin Konstantinovich was received and accepted with thanks.
From the Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich. Feb. 10, 1905. His Imperial Highness the Grand Duke Alexander thanks you very much for your third, fourth, and fifth volumes of "The Talmud and the Jews." As for the Question of placing the work In all libraries of the military academies, his Imperial Highness directs me to inform you that this question comes under the jurisdiction of his Imperial Highness Grand Duke Constantin, the august head of all the military schools.
From the Ministry of War, April 23, 1906. Your books, 1-3, of "The Talmud and the Jews," have been admitted tor distribution in the libraries of the military schools, which fact will be announced in special circulars addressed to these institutions, with the direction that these works of yours may be secured at the following address: St Petersburg, English Prospect. 10-55. Signed by Major Gen. Sukhinsky.
From Gea. D. Gan. Nov. 10, 1904. I regret exceedingly that you did not find me at home yesterday, especially since I had intended for two weeks to visit you in order to thank you personally for your works. Accept my deepest gratitude for these, as my acquaintance with them has afforded me great pleasure. May God help you to have the strength and the courage to carry out the plan of your works to the desired end.
From the Ministry of Education. Jan. , 3. 1905. Having received the third, fourth, and fifth volumes of your works, "The Talmud and the Jews." I beg you to accept my sincere thanks. I may add that, with regard to a financial subsidy, you will get a special communication. A, SCHWARTZ.
Lutostansky's works, together with other similar incendiary anti-Jewish pamphlets and circulars, have now been scattered throughout Russia, especially in the army, reviving the old fable about ritual murder and citing the Yuschinsky case. Lutostansky Is the authority, though it has been established that only recently this priest, converted several times, approached a well-known Rabbi for a subsidy as an alternative to the publication of further anti-semitic works. Lutostansky was also expelled from the Catholic Church years ago for various scandals.
The reactionary members of the Duma, led by Markov, a friend of Nicholas II, introduced an interpellation in the Duma regarding the Yuschinsky case, quoting Lutostansky, and assailing the Jews in the most disgusting terms, but the progressive members of the Duma proved how utterly ridiculous and false these accusations are, and the matter was dropped in the Duma.
The Kiev authorities are still investigating the Yuschinsky case. Several Jews have been arrested, but thus far all have been released.
It turns out that the ritual murder accusation against the Jews was only an afterthought inspired by Deputy Markov.
The Yuschinsky boy was found murdered in Kiev and it was known in the neighborhood that his stepfather had committed the crime for the purpose of collecting a considerable sum of money for which the boy had been insured. In fact, the Kievlianin, a reactionary newspaper, published the story. When Markov read it in St. Petersburg it occurred to him that the murder of the boy might be utilized as a campaign against the Jews. He Immediately hurried to Kiev, and together with other leaders of the Black Hundred established headquarters there, distributing anti-Jewish proclamations.
The Novoye Vremya. the semi-official organ of Russia, the Russkoye Znamya, the personal organ of the Czar, and the Kolokol, the organ of the Holy Synod, are continuing to inflame the populace.
Bishop Michael published an article denouncing the people who are exploiting the alleged ritual murder. His article, entitled "An Evil Legend," reads, in part, as follows:
"Papers of a certain tendency are exploiting the Kiev child murder for the most unworthy purposes. But how is it possible that such inflammatory articles can appear in the columns of a paper that calls itself the organ of the clergy?. If the conscience of the directors of that Journal does not cause them to shrink from the consequences of this notoriously mendacious fable, then the Church, of which this paper is the organ, must step in and prevent the brand of Cain being marked upon its own forehead. It is true that the whole of the respectable clerical press has always raised its voice against the fabulous ritual murder legend, but now the Church itself must denounce this fratricidal campaign."
But the reactionaries are continuing their work. The Real Russians, as they call themselves, recently met in council in Kiev to consider the situation created by the establishment of the guilt of the stepfather of Yuschinsky, and they resolved to resume the agitation against the Jews. Gen. Bogdanovich, the notorious organiser of massacres in 1903, has moved over to Kiev, where he is in charge ot the new anti-Jewish campaign. Members of the Black Hundred organisation are distributing pamphlets against the Jews in the villages about Kiev and arranging services in memory ot "Saint" Yuschlnsky.
Alexander Amphitheatrov, the famous Russian publicist, a Christian, addressed an impassioned appeal to the writers of Russia, denouncing the anti-Jewish agitation and winding up with the following words:
"Let us unite and destroy this great shame of the Russian people. It is time for us, in the Jewish question, not only to wash off the blood from our hands, it is high time to overpower the slaughter from which the splash of blood reaches us. And above all. and first of all. we must lead away from that slaughter the deceived, the ignorant Russian people who are demoralized by criminal investigation.