In his book Geneva Versus Peace (1937) the Comte de Saint Aulaire [right], French ambassador to London from 1920-24, recalled a dinner conversation with Kuhn Loeb Director Otto Kahn, left, which took place shortly after WWI. This shocking expose is fast disappearing down the memory hole.
I have retained in my memory the conversation of one of these augurs whose table neighbour I was at one of those international dinners ...He had become a director of a great New York bank, one of those which were financing the bolshevist revolution... A fellow guest asked him how it was possible for high finance to protect bolshevism, a system hostile ...for the banking industry... Our friend who was then at the head of a mission for feeding [the hungry] swigged off a big glass to Tokay, paused for a moment, taking a long pull at his enormous cigar which had cost five golden francs and then said:
"Those who are astonished at our alliance with the Soviets forget that the nation of Israel is the most nationalist of all peoples, for it is the most ancient, the most united and the most exclusive. They forget that its nationalism is the most heroic because it has resisted the most terrible persecutions. They forget that it is also the purest nationalism, since it is the most spiritual; it has existed through the centuries in spite of all obstacles without any territory to give it strength. Like the papacy, it is ecumenical and spiritual. But its eyes are turned towards the future rather than the past and its kingdom is of this world.
"That is why it is the salt of the earth, yet it is, as they say on the boulevards, le plus dessale of nationalisms, [i.e. bland] which means that the worlds decants it and despoils it. When I say 'despoils,' I mean that the wine of our nationalism is the most drinkable in the world; it has the finest bouquet, and the nations of the world absorb it with the greatest ease, with the delight and without a headache in the morning.
"But, to return to the subject of salt, do you know the saying of the men who salt cod fish? ... Too much salt corrodes meat, too little lets it rot. The precept can with justice be applied both to the human mind and to the peoples of the earth. We, Jews, apply it wisely as it should be applied, salt being the emblem of wisdom. We mingle it discreetly with the bread that men consume.
(left Nicholas II)
"We administer it in corrosive doses only in exceptional cases, when it is necessary to get rid of the debris of an immoral past, as in the case of Czarist Russia. That gives you a partial explanation why bolshevism finds favour in our eyes; it is an admirable salting tub in which to corrode and destroy and not to preserve...
"You will say that Marxism is the very antithesis of Capitalism which is equally sacred to us. It is precisely for this reason that they are direct opposites to one another, that they put into our hands the two poles of this planet and allow us to be its axis. The two contraries, like bolshevism and ourselves, find their identity in the International. [They] meet again in the identity of their purpose and end, the remaking of the world from above by control of riches, and from below by revolution.
"For centuries Israel has been segregated from Christianity, thrust into the ghetto... for the crime of slaying God and this fate saves us and, through us, will save humanity. In this way we preserve our genius and our divine mission... Our mission consists in promulgating the new law and in creating a God, that is to say in purifying the idea of God and realizing it when the time shall come. We shall purify that idea by identifying it with the notion of Israel, which has become its own Messiah. The advent of it will be facilitated by the final triumph of Israel. In these ideas we find our New Testament in which we reconcile kings and prophets, as David the prophet-king and the king-prophet united them in his own person. We are kings that prophecies may be fulfilled, and we are prophets that we may not cease to be kings...
"In the management of the new world we give proof of our organization both for revolution and for conservation. Our organization for revolution is evidenced by destructive bolshevism and for construction by the creation of the League of Nations which is also our work. Bolshevism is the accelerator and the League is the brake on the mechanism of which we supply both the motive force and the guiding power. What is the end? It is already determined by our mission. Israel is a synthetic and homogeneous nation. It is formed of elements scattered throughout the whole world, but cast in the flame of our faith in ourselves.
We are a League of Nations which contains the elements of all others. It is the fact which qualifies us to unite the nations around us. We are accused of being the agent which dissolves them. It is only at points which are impervious to that synthesis of national elements, of which ours is both the example and the means, that we act as dissolvent.
We do not break the surface except to awaken in the depths below the affinities which do not yet recognize each other. We are not the greatest common divisor of the nations except to become their greatest common federate. Israel is the microcosm and the germ of the City of the Future."--
Thanks to Joe for prompting me to reexamine this text.
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