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TWO Dreyfus Affairs: From Hero to Zero
May 27th, 2009 by Syd Walker

Alfred Dreyfus

Captain Alfred Dreyfus

Prologue: The First Dreyfus Affair

If you’ve never heard of the famous ‘Dreyfus Affair before, you may have skipped modern history at school.

Strictly speaking, it was a French affair – but it soon became famous far beyond the borders of France, in the 1890s and first decade of the 20th Century. The press gave the evolving saga feverish coverage.

French society was deeply shaken by the apparent scandal of injustice to a Jewish French Army captain, accused of spying for the Germans. Many took the side of Dreyfus and protested his innocence; others proclaimed his guilt. It was the ‘O.J. Simpson case’ of the era, with impacts that were considerably more significant.

Most popular historical accounts suggest Alfred Dreyfus was indeed innocent of the spying charges. I have no idea – but I’m quite prepared to accept that. My interest in mentioning the case is not to re-open it.

Caricature of a Family Dinner Before and after talking about the Dreyfus Affair, c.1894

A French Family Discusses the Dreyfus Affair: before and after

In the mid-1890s, much of the French nation divided into ‘Dreyfusards’ and ‘anti-Dreyfusards. Families quarreled over the topic.

Eventually, Dreyfus was judged innocent, brought back from imprisonment on Devil’s Island and granted a Presidential pardon. But Europe was changed by the incident. The whole world was changed.

By the end of the Dreyfus Affair, there was a new political movement – complete with a ‘Founding Father’ – as well as a new, very widely-used term (with variants in numerous languages).

I’m not referring to Emile Zola (author of the now legendary Dreyfusard tract ‘J’Accuse!’) – nor to any of the other French intellectuals who became more prominent by their involvement in the Dreyfus Affair.

The new ‘Founding Father’ was Theodor Herzl – and the movement Zionism. The new term?  Anti-Semitism.

It’s true that the word ‘ Zionism’ itself was also publicly launched during this period. But for many years, the concept of ‘anti-Semitism’ was much better known and more widely used than ‘Zionism’. That probably remains the case to this day.

Theodor Herzl

Theodor Herzl - popularized the term 'Anti-Semitism'

Herzl did not invent the expression ‘anti-Semitism’. But it is fair to say he played a central role in its promulgation. In the early 1890s, few in Europe or America were familiar with the expression. By the time of Herzl’s untimely death in 1904 at the age of 44, it was in common usage.

‘Anti-Semitism’ had arrived. For some it was an expression of their phobia and aversion to Jews – for others a form of irrational paranoia and/or a rationale for Jewish separation.

’Anti-Semitism’ was a newly-labeled  ‘problem’ with a ready-made ‘solution’, at least for Herzl. The solution was Zionism: a separate Jewish State.

Not everyone agreed with the solution of Zionism, of course. But in retrospect, what was crucial was that the two concepts – ‘Anti-Semitism’ and Zionism – were coupled together almost from their inception. Like two large iron balls linked by a chain, they would roll down the hill of history together, picking up pace and crashing through anything in the way.

Mossad Crest

The Israeli-agency Mossad: defending Jews - or intensifying anti-Jewish sentiment?

They have remained coupled ever since. Zionism feeds off – and requires – ‘Anti-Semitism’. It’s also increasingly the primary cause of what people describe as ‘Anti-Semitism’. The Zionist project thus creates its own sustenance: a veritable model of sustainability!

The Dreyfus Affair is famous and remains significant – to this day – because it helped launch modern Zionism and its parasitic dead twin: ‘Anti-Semitism’.

In and of itself, the Dreyfus Affair was a small case. Yet it assumed international and historical significance. Ultimately, for those who have really controlled the Zionist project from its inception – it was no more than a means to an end. Herzl’s role was also really no more than a means to an end. He has been given the historical credit for ‘founding ‘modern Zionism’. But he never called the shots. Herzl was modern Zionism’s first CEO – but he never sat on the board. His excursions into policy are poor clues to the agenda of those who devised and funded the Zionist project – and to what eventuated since his death.

Edmond James de Rothschild

Edmond James de Rothschild: a prime mover in early Zionism

Published in 1896, Herzl most famous work – a pamphlet called ‘The Jewish State’ (Der Judenstaadt) – carried the subtitle “Proposal of a modern solution for the Jewish question”.

Significantly, it was originally called ‘Address to the Rothschilds’. The key text of modern Zionism was conceived as an appeal to the world’s richest banking family.

21 years later, in 1917. the King of England, then head of the largest and wealthiest Empire the world had ever seen, also wrote directly to the head of the Rothschild family formally promising Palestine as a ‘Jewish home’.

The role of the Rothschilds was pivotal from the outset of Zionism – and recognized as such by key protagonists. (It’s also noteworthy that the initial ingress of separatist Jewish settlers into Palestine dates from the 1880s, long before Herzl’s involvement; it was funded by Baron Edmund James de Rothschild.

Dreyfus humiliated

Dreyfus humiliated: a classic image in the Dreyfus case

Seen in this historical context, The Dreyfus Affair was what in modern times we call a ‘media beat-up’. Of course, punishment of an innocent man (assuming Dreyfus was innocent) is a serious matter. If this was done for reasons of sectarian bigotry, that’s also important to report and a crusading media should indeed seek redress for the victim. The grim conditions on France’s notorious penal colony doubtless also merited reporting.

The case was not insignificant. However, when the fate of one man becomes the talking point of Europe, media coverage is, perhaps, out of proportion to the issue overtly at stake. It suggests an underlying motive. I believe the motive, ABOVE ALL, was to launch the concept of ‘anti-Semitism’ and promote its universal usage.

Herzl played an important role in this, but he was not the only player in the orchestra. The press as a whole – much (although by no means all) in Jewish hands – served as an vast amplifier. The stage was thus set for a new century (the 20th Century) that might well be given the subtitle ‘Anti-Semitism and its Consequences’.

The New Dreyfus Affair: Missing Epilogue?

History is full of ironies.

In June 2008, a young police inspector with a background in the Metropolitan anti-Terrorism squad (who had also, reportedly, been on duty during the 7/7 London bombings), was reportedly observed by British Member of Parliament George Galloway and a respected British journalist at an anti-Bush demonstration in London, undertaking what appeared to be the role of agent provocateur.

Chris Dreyfus

Inspector Chris Dreyfus: little media interest in this man or his curious activities

The policeman’s name is Christopher (Chris) Dreyfus. When Galloway went public with an open letter about this to the Home Secretary, it seemed the case might well be tagged the New Dreyfus Affair.

Yet the mass media has shown no interest at all in this case. Even George Galloway and Yasmin Whittacker-Khan, the journalist who first mentioned the incident in a national newspaper without naming the officer, have been silent on the subject ever since.

On February 6th this year, Britain’s Socialist Unity website, which had reported Galloway’s Open letter the previous year, published the following item as an update:


Filed under: Police, Law, blogging, civil liberties — admin @ 2:00 pm

On 25 June 2008 we published a posting, by Andy Newman, entitled “J’accuse! — the Dreyfus Affair”. This posting included a copy of a letter Mr George Galloway MP had sent to the RT Hon Jacqui Smith the Home Secretary, identifying Inspector Christopher Dreyfus as an agent provocateur at an anti-war demonstration in Parliament Square on 15 June 2008.

Socialist Unity

Easily convinced

Mr Galloway said that he had observed Inspector Dreyfus commit various crimes, including incitement to violence, attempted assault on a police officer and several serious public order offences. He called upon the Home Secretary to conduct an inquiry into Inspector Dreyfus’ behaviour. Our posting called upon readers to comment on Mr Galloway’s letter. We made clear that Inspector Dreyfus denied the allegations.

We understand that, as a result of Mr Galloway’s letter, the matter has been comprehensively investigated by the British Transport Police and the Metropolitan Police, and that their findings have been reviewed by the Crown Prosecution Service.

The investigations did not substantiate Ms Whittaker-Khan’s story or the allegations in Mr Galloway’s letter. The CPS has confirmed that there is no case to answer.

We now accept that Christopher Dreyfus was not present at the demonstration and did not engage in any of the criminal behaviour referred to in Ms Whittaker-Khan’s story or Mr Galloway’s letter. We apologize to him for the damage caused to his reputation.

I recently wrote a short item about the new ‘Dreyfus Affair’ on this website: Met Police Agent Provocateurs: Dreyfus Affair 2

This item was picked up and reported by NiqNaq, a private UK-based blog, but swiftly removed. Apparently, someone contacted the blogger and pointed him to the earlier Socialist Unity story. NiqNaq immediately accepted the explanation, deleted its first article and issued a restraction.

George Galloway

George Galloway MP: was his open letter of complaint reckless misreporting - or has he since been silenced?

I had missed the February 2009 Socialist Unity article until then, because it used the words ‘Christopher Dreyfus’.  My web searches employed the search term ‘Chris Dreyfus’, the shorter form of this man’s name, which had been used in previous reports and correspondence that I’d seen.

However, had I noticed the Social Unity ‘Correction’ myself, I think I’d still have been inclined to ask a few questions before accepting it as gospel truth.

If Galloway was truly mistaken, where is his public explanation and apology? I can’t find it.

If forced to issue such an apology, George Galloway’s credibility would be shot to pieces. He has plenty of political enemies; one would imagine that if the politician had been mistaken when publicly identifying this particular policeman as a suspected agent provocateur, they’d relish humiliating him over the incident.

But no – it seems there’s a broad consensus to keep this story out of the media. It’s the antithesis of the first Dreyfus Affair; this is the scoop that no-one wants…

What a contrast it all makes with the ferocious investigative journalism of the famous Dreyfus Affair!

If journalists in Herzl’s day had been so accepting, Alfred Dreyfus would surely have perished on Devil’s Island…

7 Responses  
  • Rowan Berkeley writes:
    May 27th, 20095:45 pmat

    AFAICS, George Galloway did not claim to have identified Insp. Dreyfus independently. Yasmin Whittaker-Khan identified him, and Galloway based his complaint upon her identification. Therefore, the only way to proceed is to inquire further of Ms. Whittaker-Khan.

  • Syd Walker writes:
    May 28th, 20093:21 pmat


    As I commented on your own blog, by some msyerious circumstance my initial rendereing of the text of Galloway’s letter missed out the crucial paragraph in which Galloway ideintifies Dreyfus.

    I think – judging by the comment you made on your blog when i pointed this out (and corrected my own text) that this makes it clear. Galloway identified Dreyfus – as well as Yasmin Whittaker-Khan. If he has since changed his mind about this, there’s nothing on the record I can find that says so. Moreover, it would be passing strange for him to make such a specific, personal accusation – then say it was just a case of mistaken identity.

    More likely, I think, that Galloway and others involved have been asked to supress the story. Possibly threatened?

  • Notsilvia Night writes:
    June 27th, 20092:00 amat

    I like your history lessons a lot. I find it especially interesting that The Rothschild family got involved in Zionism before they were asked by Herzl. I always assume that it was Herzl who started the movement, and the Rothschilds thought it a fitting cause in light of their family tradition of fanatic seperatism from gentiles and even from liberal gentile-friendly Jews. Now you say, it was actually the Rothschilds who started the movement.
    Can you point me to the original sources (sources I can read online), showing when the Rothschild clan started their involvement with Zionism and who else among influential Jewish individuals or families supported the movement?
    I think it´s important to overcome the myths of Zionism.

    • Syd Walker writes:
      June 27th, 20098:07 pmat

      Hi Notsilvia. I hope articles like this don’t sound too much like lessons; For me, they are more like explorations. I’m not a professional historian.

      You ask about the early involvement of the Rothschilds in Zionism. A key player appears to be Baron Edmond de Rothschild. I find it useful to refer to ‘offical’ Jewish sources on topics like this. That way, no-one can accuse me of making it up or using ‘biased’ sources…

      See the entry for Baron Edmond James de Rothschild in the Jewish Virtual Library, for example. He was funding Jewish settlements – mainbly Russian emigres – in Palestine from the 1880s. I don’t think, at that time, the word Zionism was in common usage. That came later.

      As for other powerful Jews involved in this project at an early stage… perhaps other readers can help with that? Moses Hess – a contemporary of Marx – seems to have played some intellectual role in developing a case for Jewish separatism based on secular, as opposed to tradionalist/religious arguments.

      • Notsilvia Night writes:
        June 28th, 200912:21 pmat

        Thank you for the link, Syd. I do like your explorations. In the last years I realized that so many of the things I thought I knew about history, the stuff I learned in school or from the media were actually elaborate deceptions. But if you don´t know the real facts about events in the past you can´t understand the present, since the present is always a consequence of the past and a consequence of what people believe about themselves and the world they live in. If our beliefs are based on faulty assumptions our actions will not be reasonable. This is what I see with the Jewish people. They have been given by their elites a skewed image of the past and of the Jewish relationship with gentiles in the past. The Jewish belief that non-Jews are irrational Jew-haters has created an irrational paranoia among a majority of Jewish people which is the driving force behind the insane and ruthless ethnocentric behavior of many Zionists.
        I´ll maybe get into this on my blog later on. For now thanks again for your research it has given me quite a bit of new information

        • Syd Walker writes:
          June 28th, 20092:18 pmat

          Thanks Notsilvia (very funny name, BTW)

          Perhaps I should call myself Notmadonna? :-)

          I think in most social issues, ONE and MANY are the key principles.

          For example, there is ONE humanity and MANY individuals. There’;s one world and many countries. There’s ONE planet and many religions. One State (in any one place) and many citizens…

          The tension between one and many is constant. Collective v individual interests are at the basis of social theory and politics. Or so it seems to me.

          The easiest way to screw things up is to posit a simple yet invented dinstinction. Make one world two. When I grew up, that’s pretty much how things appeared in the world. There were two hostile armed camps, glaring at each other, scaring the hell out of most of the people on earth.

          Living in this divided world meant we hd an ecuse foi falling wretchedly short of fulfiling obvious key goals, such as bringing the opportunity for good nutrition, health care and education to all people on earth, ASAP.

          Around 1990 the reason for feeling ‘divided’ in this way mysteriously collapsed. Even though Choina retained a ‘Communist’ political system, no-one seemed to care about that, because it was embracing capitalism. Meanwhile, the old USSR was carved up and new plutocracies soon emerged to dominate new democracies such as Russia.

          The possibility was certainly there, it seems to me, for the well-connected wealthy of the world to declare victory in the global class war and forge a global society that entrenched their semi-premiable class dominance.

          Strangely enough, the best explanation as to wwhy this hasn’t happened, IMO (and I reserve the right to change my opinion if I get better information), is the crude tribalism of Jewish members of the elite. This is what the Shah of Iran meant when he spoke about the American Jewish Lobby “pushing around too many people”.

          But the Shah was wrong. He thought the non-Jewish elite would outgun the Jewish elite. He didn’t bargain for the relative lack of cohesion of the non-Jewish elite and the much greater cohesion of the Jewish elite (and it’s commitment to Jewish supremacism).

          In 2009, we’re only at a stage in history in which an attemot seems to be underway to replace the old ‘Cold War’ fission with a new fission, based on the Jewish State and its allies v the rest.

          The ultimate objective may be be setting up so-called ‘Jews’ as a new ruling caste – rather like ‘alphas’ in Huxley’s Brave New World. In such a scanario, as Huxley envisaged, all sorts’ would still be found among the elite. You don’t turn down talents like Michael Jacksons because he’s not already a member of the tribe.

          But the concept of ‘alphas’ is most easily based on tribal loyalty, passed on within the family. That way, real families breed new, pre-conditioned ‘alphas’ and they undertake the conditioning on their own time. It’s easier on the State and probably healthier for the child-alphas.

          Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’ dystopic vision has been superceded by more cost-effective indoctrination techniques. It’s the type of development Huxley might well have predicted.

          • Notsilvia Night writes:
            June 28th, 20099:48 pmat

            You are probably right about the Jewish people being set up as “alphas”. Many see themselves as “alphas”, more intelligent than the gentiles. But Huxley´s alphas weren´t free either. While the other greek-letter groups were enslaved, the alphas were duped.

            But in the real world Jewish people are duped by fear or even paranoia to become foot-soldiers for their elites. And that´s a rather unhealthy mindset. Even from the point of view of pure self-interest without any ethical concern for anybody else, what Israel is doing to the Palestinians and their other neighbors seems counterproductive in every way.The Israelis create themselves enemies needlessly.

            From my experiences in Palestine, I think Palestinians aren´t so very different from Germans after WWII. When Germany was defeated, Germans were driven out from large parts of former German areas. It was a terrible loss for the refugees. But when Germany was allowed to rebuild the country and the people were able to rebuild their lives, most Germans, even most of the refugees, accepted the loss. Today there are barely any Germans who want the old German areas back.
            The same would have happened most likely in Palestine, if the Palestinians there and the Palestinian refugees in the neighbouring countries would have been allowed to rebuild their lives in peace – possibly with some reparation payments as the German government was handing out to the German refugees some years after the war.
            Israel could have done the same thing to the Palestinians, it would probably been a lot cheaper than the military build-up.
            But instead they go after a game-theory play-book (developed by John Nash, a paranoid schizophrenic, b.t.w.) which says, that a nation can only feel safe, if it is stronger than anyone else in the neighborhood combined, strong enough to eliminate everyone else.

            Israel´s leaders want to country to be seen as “mad dog” too dangerous to touch it. That´s totally crazy and self-defeating. For, staying in the metaphor, even if a dog with rabies is dangerous when you come close, in the long run the community has to stand up to it, it´s violent unpredictability when it´s on the loose is far more dangerous.
            Maybe the non-Jewish elite cannot outgun the Jewish elite. But then the matter doesn´t just concern the elites. And maybe “outgunning” isn´t the only way of solving problems.

            You are right, the division of the world in two hostile blocks during the Cold War most likely was just a ploy by the elites to keep everyone on the edge. And now they have replaced the “evil communists” with the “islamofascists”. It´s a justification for wars and military build-up and for more control over the population.

            As for the difference between the interests of the individuals as opposed to the interests of the group: I think, there actually is no real difference. Every individual is also a member of not only one but actually many groups, small and large groups, self-chosen or not. That´s part of the human condition and part of our biological and psychological make-up.

            Everybody strives for personal space and rights, while most everybody also realizes that he or she can´t survive without others. So most people will try to find a balance and so must all sustainable political entities and religions.
            The needs of the group cannot supersede the needs of the individual, for every group is made up of individuals and if the human rights of some are violated in the long run noone will live in peace.

            I personally think, society works best when it is the most decentralized. I agree with Huxley on this.
            (as he said in the Wallace interview, although that over-population mantra he was spinning was most likely his own bias being a member of the arrogant British elite after all. Population-growth in my opinion is a reaction to the insecurities brought on by the culture- and life-situation changing times of industrialization. In every country, European and Asian, population growth stopped, when the majority population became secure in their living conditions. Malthus was wrong.)

            In a decentralized society of smaller but constantly cooperating groups the individual has more opportunities for input, he or she feels more empowered and therefor less helpless. This will lead to more creativity to solve local problems in the most efficient way.
            This will be far more efficient than if those problems are being tackled by a far-away center with either a one solution fits all approach or an enormous bureaucracy stipulating “if this, then that, if this, then that” and so on and on and on.
            And because centralization is so inefficient and makes people on the ground either apathetic or unhappy, that´s why even centralized communism didn´t work inspite of all it´s good intentions.

            And since people under a centralized system are unhappy and potentially rebellious, the system´s rulers try brutal coercive methods to stay in control. As a consequence of this even more are even more resistors are being created.
            In the western world the elites have tried those new methods, you are talking about. Mainly they used entertainment, drugs and media-deception.
            I think, slowly but certainly, there comes a time now when those methods do no longer work either. Now, it seems, they are going to try open violence against the majority population again, a dictatorship. In the long run, they will fail there too.

            The western elites have a problem. They just don´t understand human nature. Human beings do not need to be coerced to cooperate. Cooperation is the most natural thing for us. We cooperate even when we have no obvious personal gain. We just do. Look at what is happening in the internet, a non-centralized system, where people cooperate just for the fun of it, creating Wikis or open-source programs or musical and other cultural hubs and sharing sites, some are even ready to go to jail for it.
            That´s not just how the internet works, that´s how normal human society works, cooperation, sometimes for personal gain and sometimes just fot the heck of it. It´s part of our biological make-up.
            When the elites would fit themselves into the system the way it is working for the benefit of everybody, they can stay elites. However, when they become megalomaniacs and control-freaks, they are sawing down the branch on which they are sitting. They´ll go down inevitably in the end.
            I think it´s the false ideology of today´s elites, which is the problem. They believe, that ordinary human beings are stupid, violent and non-cooperative. The elites believe that they need to force or manipulate the rest of us either for our own good or for the good of planet Earth or for the good of human evolution.
            They are wrong, I think. Even their concept of evolution is wrong. The driving force behind the development of life is not fight of everything against everything else, but it is cooperation. Darwins evolution-theory was influenced by him being a member of the arrogant British elites.(sorry, now I´m talking too much. You just got me going there… But thanks for listening. I´ll write more on my blog)

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