Israel Shahak

Israeli academic

Israel Shahak (28 April 19332 July 2001) was a Professor of Chemistry at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Holocaust Survivor, and an outspoken critic of the Israeli government and of Israeli society in general.


  • You cannot have humane Zionism, it is a contradiction in terms.
    • "An Interview with Israel Shahak" in Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. IV, No. 3 (1975), p. 3.
  • It is my considered opinion that the State of Israel is a racist state in the full meaning of this term: In this state people are discriminated against, in the most permanent and legal way and in the most important areas of life, only because of their origin. This racist discrimination began in Zionism and is carried out today mainly in co-operation with the institutions of the Zionist movement.
    • "The Racist Nature of Zionism and of the Zionist State of Israel" in the student newspaper of Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Pi-Ha'aton (5 November 1975).

Jewish History, Jewish Religion (1994)

  • I strongly believe that antisemitism and Jewish chauvinism can only be fought simultaneously.
  • Modern racism (of which antisemitism is part) although caused by specific social conditions, becomes, when it gains strength, a force that in my opinion can only be described as demonic.
  • Both before and after a meal, a pious Jew ritually washes his hands, uttering a special blessing. On one of these two occasions he is worshiping God, by promoting the divine union of Son and Daughter; but on the other he is worshiping Satan, who likes Jewish prayers and ritual acts so much that when he is offered a few of them it keeps him busy for a while and he forgets to pester the divine daughter.

Jewish Fundamentalism In Israel (1997)

  • We realize that by criticizing Jewish fundamentalism we are criticizing a part of the past that we love. We wish that members of every human grouping would criticize their own past, even before criticizing others.
    • With Norton Mezvinsky.

Quotes about Israel Shahak

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