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Believe It Or Not

Can you guess who wrote this on Jerusalem and its population in 1854?

“sedentary population numbers about 15,500 souls, of whom 4,000 are Mussulmans [Muslims] and 8,000 Jews.” He goes on to say that “the Mussulmans, forming about a quarter of the whole, consisting of Turks, Arabs, and Moors, are, of course, the masters in every respect.”

“Nothing equals the misery and the suffering of the Jews of Jerusalem, inhabiting the most filthy quarter of the town, called hareth-el-yahoud . . . between the Zion and the Moriah . . . [They are] the constant objects of Mussulman oppression and intolerance, insulted by the Greeks, persecuted by the Latins [Catholics], and living only on the scanty alms transmitted by their European brethren.”

If you guess the antisemitic Karl Marx, I’d call you crazy, except you are correct.

To anyone familiar with Marx’s venomous portrait of Judaism in his early essay “On the Jewish Question,” not to speak of his many uncomplimentary comments about individual Jews (fellow socialists such as Ferdinand Lassalle included), his words here will come as a surprise. That the only place in all of Marx’s writings in which he expresses some empathy for Jews refers to the Jews of Jerusalem awaiting the Messiah is, at least, rather extraordinary.

Not only that, but his account further proves Jews have been the majority in Jerusalem since at least 1854!

Read the whole thing.

About the author

Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
Picture of David Lange

David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media
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