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Shofar FTP Archive File: orgs/australian/adelaide-institute/1997/statement-of-hoffman


Archive/File: orgs/australian/adelaide-institute/statement-of-hoffman
Last-Modified: 1998/04/12
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Jeremy Jones and members of the Committee of Management of
the Executive Council of Australian Jewry on Behalf of those
members of the Jewish community of Australia who are members
of organisations affiliated to the Executive Council of
Australian Jewry

                                                 Complainant
                                                            
                             and
                              
Fredrick Toben on Behalf of the Adelaide Institute

                                                  Respondent
                                                            
Witness Statement: Mr. Michael A. Hoffman II, POBox 849,
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83816, USA

31 October 1997

1. The Defense Witness

1.1 My name is Michael Anthony Hoffman II of PO Box 849,
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho 83816, USA. I am an American citizen
and a Christian.

1.2 I am the author of four books, including one on Talmud
and Kabbalah published in both the U.S. and Japan, entitled,
`Secret Societies and Psychological Warfare.' I am a former
reporter for the Albany, New York bureau of the Associated
Press. I am currently self-employed as a professional
historian. I edit `Revisionist History' newsletter and
operate the history website, "Campaign for Radical Truth in
History" at http://www.hoffman-info.com.

3.5 The complainant quotes Adin Steinsaltz to the effect
that the Jewish `Talmud' "cannot be cited as an authority
for purposes of ruling." No page number is given for this
citation. However, I found it on p. 4 of `The Essential
Talmud.' The complete statement by Steinsaltz, without
ellipsis, concerning the position of the Talmud within
Judaism reads, "And although the Talmud is, to this day, the
primary source of Jewish law, it cannot be cited as an
authority for purposes of ruling."

This paradox is quoted by the complainant perhaps intending
to infer that the `Talmud' does not have a supreme position
within Judaism. However, the `Talmud' is the "primary source
of Jewish law" as Steinsaltz admits. The claim that it
"cannot be cited as an authority for purposes of ruling" is
a reference to procedure rather than any diminution of the
supreme position of `Talmud' in Judaism. As Steinsaltz
further states: "Even before the `Talmud' was completed, it
was evident that this work was to become the basic text and
primary source for Jewish law." (Ibid., p.64)

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The complainant himself admits the centrality of the
`Talmud' in Judaism. "The `Talmud' is the source of the
moral code followed by Observant Orthodox Jews..."

Complainant states: "The charges concerning `Talmudic
habits' and immorality condoned by the `Talmud' are
"reasonably likely, in all the circumstances, to offend,
insult, humiliate or intimidate Jewish Australians."

The issue is the truth and not who the truth offends.
Otherwise, how is it possible in Australia to propagate
charges about Nazi German crimes and immorality, since the
charges are bound to "offend, insult, humiliate or
intimidate" German Australians?  Presumably the response is
that the Nazis did these things and Australians of German
descent will have to learn to live with the truth about
their past.

By the same token then, in the question of the `Talmud,' the
issue cannot be whether the truth about the `Talmud' offends
or insults or intimidates Jewish Australians, but whether in
fact the Adelaide Institute has written accurately and
truthfully about the `Talmud.' If the Adelaide Institute has
written truthfully on this subject, Jewish Australians, like
German Australians must learn to live with the truth about
their past. To do otherwise is to establish a special class
of persons in Australia about whom the truth must not be
articulated.

Complainant states: "The claims repeated a number of times
on the Web-site, alleges that Jews are guided by an evil,
immoral and corrupting code of conduct. As individual Jews,
of whom the Adelaide Institute has made no attempt to
determine their religious beliefs, are indiscriminately
accused of `Talmudic' immorality by the Adelaide Institute,
there is no logical conclusion other than that the authors
and the Adelaide Institute believe that all Jews should be
regarded with suspicion and contempt."

I do not see how the Adelaide Institute's allegation that
Jews are guided by an "immoral and corrupting code" is
grounds for legal proscription or punishment. It is a
commonplace among certain atheists, agnostics, Muslims, Jews
and others on university faculties, in books and newspapers,
magazines and television programs in Australia to allege
that Christians are guided by a "racist, hateful and
corrupting book," i.e. the `Bible', or more specifically,
the `New Testament.'

It is logical and reasonable to infer that a Christian
adheres to the Christian Scriptures as a code of conduct or
guide. One does not interdict criticism of the `Bible' or
the `New Testament' because the critic did not differentiate
between Christians and apostate Christians. Criticism of the
`Talmud' should not be interdicted on the grounds that the
critic of a text failed to differentiate between Jews and
apostate Jews.

3.6 The `Talmud' is indeed a law code and code of conduct
which has the potential to motivate Jews to "act in
unethical and immoral ways." This has been attested by Jews
themselves and is an opinion having academic and scholarly
merit.

For example, Dr. Israel Shahak, professor emeritus at Hebrew
University writes: "I had personally witnessed an ultra-
religious Jew refuse to allow his phone to be used on the
Sabbath in order to call an ambulance for a non-Jew who
happened to have collapsed in his Jewish neighborhood.
Instead of simply publishing the incident in the press, I
asked for a meeting with the members of the Rabbinical Court
of Jerusalem, which is composed of rabbis nominated by the
State of Israel. I asked them whether such behavior was
consistent with their interpretation of the Jewish religion.
They answered that the Jew in question had behaved
correctly, indeed piously, and backed their statement

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by referring me to a passage in an authoritative compendium
of Talmudic laws..." (`Jewish History, Jewish Religion: The
Weight of Three Thousand Years,' [London, England, Piuto
Press, 1994], p. 1).

Jewish author Evelyn Kaye, commenting on the attitudes of
Jews toward non-Jews that is engendered by Talmudic
literature, states: "The mark of a truly devout Hasidic or
Orthodox Jew, as well as many other Jews, is unquestioned
hatred of non-Jews....I felt that the bigotry they always
blamed on those who said anything negative about Jews was
equally visible on the other side of the fence. It seemed to
me perfectly crazy to state that all Goyim were thieves, and
then to put your money into a bank run entirely by them. It
seemed to me ridiculous to state that all Goyim were
liars....Anti-Goyism is a foundation of Orthodox and Hasidic
philosophy and way of life. It's so deeply ingrained that
even to say something nice about a non-Jew is suspect."
(`The Hole in the Sheet,' [Seacaucus, New Jersey, Lyle
Stuart Inc., 1987], pp. 112, 114-115).

Undoubtedly these statements by Jews critical of conduct
engendered by the `Talmud' are painful for pious religious
and Zionist Jews to countenance. Every religion has its
hallowed dogmas and many religions seek to uphold these
dogmas through the power of the state. But for the state to
silence intellectuals is to do no service to Jews or anyone
else.

The act of suppression creates a special protected class of
citizens seemingly immune from criticism. Such immunity is
itself a source of social friction and communal tension
because it connotes that Australians are not all equal; that
some Australians are shielded from sensitive probes into
their dogmatic canons while others must bear the most
searching and critical scrutiny into the crimes and foibles
of their heritage and ancestry. One standard should be
applied to all in the best tradition of Anglo-Saxon
jurisprudence.

3.9 The complainant has offered no evidence whatever to
uphold his contention that the Adelaide Institute's
"material relating to...the `Talmud' does not meet minimum
standards of accuracy..."

This writer is prepared to demonstrate from the
authoritative `Talmudic' text themselves and from the words
of the acknowledged Jewish authorities on those texts, such
as Moses Maimonides, that the `Talmud' does indeed contain
statements and teachings that are profoundly racist and
immoral and that a candid exegesis of the `Talmud' most
certainly does serve to make a "genuine contribution" to
"academic" and "public interest."

Michael A. Hoffman II


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