Jews Are a ‘Race,’ Genes Reveal

David Duke Tweeted out this link yesterday. Although the story is from 2012, it seems to offer timeless insights into just who the Jews are.

Here the Jews say it’s fair to call them a race.

Jewish Forward

In his new book, “Legacy: A Genetic History of the Jewish People,” Harry Ostrer, a medical geneticist and professor at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, claims that Jews are different, and the differences are not just skin deep. Jews exhibit, he writes, a distinctive genetic signature. Considering that the Nazis tried to exterminate Jews based on their supposed racial distinctiveness, such a conclusion might be a cause for concern. But Ostrer sees it as central to Jewish identity.


“Who is a Jew?” has been a poignant question for Jews throughout our history. It evokes a complex tapestry of Jewish identity made up of different strains of religious beliefs, cultural practices and blood ties to ancient Palestine and modern Israel. But the question, with its echoes of genetic determinism, also has a dark side.

Geneticists have long been aware that certain diseases, from breast cancer to Tay-Sachs, disproportionately affect Jews. Ostrer, who is also director of genetic and genomic testing at Montefiore Medical Center, goes further, maintaining that Jews are a homogeneous group with all the scientific trappings of what we used to call a “race.”

For most of the 3,000-year history of the Jewish people, the notion of what came to be known as “Jewish exceptionalism” was hardly controversial. Because of our history of inmarriage and cultural isolation, imposed or self-selected, Jews were considered by gentiles (and usually referred to themselves) as a “race.” Scholars from Josephus to Disraeli proudly proclaimed their membership in “the tribe.”

Ostrer explains how this concept took on special meaning in the 20th century, as genetics emerged as a viable scientific enterprise. Jewish distinctiveness might actually be measurable empirically. In “Legacy,” he first introduces us to Maurice Fishberg, an upwardly mobile Russian-Jewish immigrant to New York at the fin de siècle. Fishberg fervently embraced the anthropological fashion of the era, measuring skull sizes to explain why Jews seemed to be afflicted with more diseases than other groups — what he called the “peculiarities of the comparative pathology of the Jews.” It turns out that Fishberg and his contemporary phrenologists were wrong: Skull shape provides limited information about human differences. But his studies ushered in a century of research linking Jews to genetics.

Ostrer divides his book into six chapters representing the various aspects of Jewishness: Looking Jewish, Founders, Genealogies, Tribes, Traits and Identity. Each chapter features a prominent scientist or historical figure who dramatically advanced our understanding of Jewishness. The snippets of biography lighten a dense forest of sometimes-obscure science. The narrative, which consists of a lot of potboiler history, is a slog at times. But for the specialist and anyone touched by the enduring debate over Jewish identity, this book is indispensable.

“Legacy” may cause its readers discomfort. To some Jews, the notion of a genetically related people is an embarrassing remnant of early Zionism that came into vogue at the height of the Western obsession with race, in the late 19th century. Celebrating blood ancestry is divisive, they claim: The authors of “The Bell Curve” were vilified 15 years ago for suggesting that genes play a major role in IQ differences among racial groups.

Furthermore, sociologists and cultural anthropologists, a disproportionate number of whom are Jewish, ridicule the term “race,” claiming there are no meaningful differences between ethnic groups. For Jews, the word still carries the especially odious historical association with Nazism and the Nuremberg Laws. They argue that Judaism has morphed from a tribal cult into a worldwide religion enhanced by thousands of years of cultural traditions.

Is Judaism a people or a religion? Or both? The belief that Jews may be psychologically or physically distinct remains a controversial fixture in the gentile and Jewish consciousness, and Ostrer places himself directly in the line of fire. Yes, he writes, the term “race” carries nefarious associations of inferiority and ranking of people. Anything that marks Jews as essentially different runs the risk of stirring either anti- or philo-Semitism. But that doesn’t mean we can ignore the factual reality of what he calls the “biological basis of Jewishness” and “Jewish genetics.” Acknowledging the distinctiveness of Jews is “fraught with peril,” but we must grapple with the hard evidence of “human differences” if we seek to understand the new age of genetics.

Although he readily acknowledges the formative role of culture and environment, Ostrer believes that Jewish identity has multiple threads, including DNA. He offers a cogent, scientifically based review of the evidence, which serves as a model of scientific restraint.

“On the one hand, the study of Jewish genetics might be viewed as an elitist effort, promoting a certain genetic view of Jewish superiority,” he writes. “On the other, it might provide fodder for anti-Semitism by providing evidence of a genetic basis for undesirable traits that are present among some Jews. These issues will newly challenge the liberal view that humans are created equal but with genetic liabilities.”

“About 80% of Jewish males and 50% of Jewish females trace their ancestry back to the Middle East”,

Jews, he notes, are one of the most distinctive population groups in the world because of our history of endogamy. Jews — Ashkenazim in particular — are relatively homogeneous despite the fact that they are spread throughout Europe and have since immigrated to the Americas and back to Israel. The Inquisition shattered Sephardi Jewry, leading to far more incidences of intermarriage and to a less distinctive DNA.

In traversing this minefield of the genetics of human differences, Ostrer bolsters his analysis with volumes of genetic data, which are both the book’s greatest strength and its weakness. Two complementary books on this subject — my own “Abraham’s Children: Race, Identity, and the DNA of the Chosen People” and “Jacob’s Legacy: A Genetic View of Jewish History” by Duke University geneticist David Goldstein, who is well quoted in both “Abraham’s Children” and “Legacy” — are more narrative driven, weaving history and genetics, and are consequently much more congenial reads.

The concept of the “Jewish people” remains controversial. The Law of Return, which establishes the right of Jews to come to Israel, is a central tenet of Zionism and a founding legal principle of the State of Israel. The DNA that tightly links Ashkenazi, Sephardi and Mizrahi, three prominent culturally and geographically distinct Jewish groups, could be used to support Zionist territorial claims — except, as Ostrer points out, some of the same markers can be found in Palestinians, our distant genetic cousins, as well. Palestinians, understandably, want their own right of return.

That disagreement over the meaning of DNA also pits Jewish traditionalists against a particular strain of secular Jewish liberals that has joined with Arabs and many non-Jews to argue for an end to Israel as a Jewish nation. Their hero is Shlomo Sand, an Austrian-born Israeli historian who reignited this complex controversy with the 2008 publication of “The Invention of the Jewish People.”

Sand contends that Zionists who claim an ancestral link to ancient Palestine are manipulating history. But he has taken his thesis from novelist Arthur Koestler’s 1976 book, “The Thirteenth Tribe,” which was part of an attempt by post-World War II Jewish liberals to reconfigure Jews not as a biological group, but as a religious ideology and ethnic identity.

The majority of the Ashkenazi Jewish population, as Koestler, and now Sand, writes, are not the children of Abraham but descendants of pagan Eastern Europeans and Eurasians, concentrated mostly in the ancient Kingdom of Khazaria in what is now Ukraine and Western Russia. The Khazarian nobility converted during the early Middle Ages, when European Jewry was forming.

Although scholars challenged Koestler’s and now Sand’s selective manipulation of the facts — the conversion was almost certainly limited to the tiny ruling class and not to the vast pagan population — the historical record has been just fragmentary enough to titillate determined critics of Israel, who turned both Koestler’s and Sand’s books into roaring best-sellers.

Fortunately, re-creating history now depends not only on pottery shards, flaking manuscripts and faded coins, but on something far less ambiguous: DNA. Ostrer’s book is an impressive counterpoint to the dubious historical methodology of Sand and his admirers. And, as a co-founder of the Jewish HapMap — the study of haplotypes, or blocks of genetic markers, that are common to Jews around the world — he is well positioned to write the definitive response.

In accord with most geneticists, Ostrer firmly rejects the fashionable postmodernist dismissal of the concept of race as genetically naive, opting for a more nuanced perspective.

When the human genome was first mapped a decade ago, Francis Collins, then head of the National Genome Human Research Institute, said: “Americans, regardless of ethnic group, are 99.9% genetically identical.” Added J. Craig Venter, who at the time was chief scientist at the private firm that helped sequenced the genome, Celera Genomics, “Race has no genetic or scientific basis.” Those declarations appeared to suggest that “race,” or the notion of distinct but overlapping genetic groups, is “meaningless.”

But Collins and Venter have issued clarifications of their much-misrepresented comments. Almost every minority group has faced, at one time or another, being branded as racially inferior based on a superficial understanding of how genes peculiar to its population work. The inclination by politicians, educators and even some scientists to underplay our separateness is certainly understandable. But it’s also misleading. DNA ensures that we differ not only as individuals, but also as groups.

However slight the differences (and geneticists now believe that they are significantly greater than 0.1%), they are defining. That 0.1% contains some 3 million nucleotide pairs in the human genome, and these determine such things as skin or hair color and susceptibility to certain diseases. They contain the map of our family trees back to the first modern humans.

Both the human genome project and disease research rest on the premise of finding distinguishable differences between individuals and often among populations. Scientists have ditched the term “race,” with all its normative baggage, and adopted more neutral terms, such as “population” and “clime,” which have much of the same meaning. Boiled down to its essence, race equates to “region of ancestral origin.”

Ostrer has devoted his career to investigating these extended family trees, which help explain the genetic basis of common and rare disorders. Today, Jews remain identifiable in large measure by the 40 or so diseases we disproportionately carry, the inescapable consequence of inbreeding. He traces the fascinating history of numerous “Jewish diseases,” such as Tay-Sachs, Gaucher, Niemann-Pick, Mucolipidosis IV, as well as breast and ovarian cancer. Indeed, 10 years ago I was diagnosed as carrying one of the three genetic mutations for breast and ovarian cancer that mark my family and me as indelibly Jewish, prompting me to write “Abraham’s Children.”

Like East Asians, the Amish, Icelanders, Aboriginals, the Basque people, African tribes and other groups, Jews have remained isolated for centuries because of geography, religion or cultural practices. It’s stamped on our DNA. As Ostrer explains in fascinating detail, threads of Jewish ancestry link the sizable Jewish communities of North America and Europe to Yemenite and other Middle Eastern Jews who have relocated to Israel, as well as to the black Lemba of southern Africa and to India’s Cochin Jews. But, in a twist, the links include neither the Bene Israel of India nor Ethiopian Jews. Genetic tests show that both groups are converts, contradicting their founding myths.

Why, then, are Jews so different looking, usually sharing the characteristics of the surrounding populations? Think of red-haired Jews, Jews with blue eyes or the black Jews of Africa. Like any cluster — a genetic term Ostrer uses in place of the more inflammatory “race” — Jews throughout history moved around and fooled around, although mixing occurred comparatively infrequently until recent decades. Although there are identifiable gene variations that are common among Jews, we are not a “pure” race. The time machine of our genes may show that most Jews have a shared ancestry that traces back to ancient Palestine but, like all of humanity, Jews are mutts.

About 80% of Jewish males and 50% of Jewish females trace their ancestry back to the Middle East. The rest entered the “Jewish gene pool” through conversion or intermarriage. Those who did intermarry often left the faith in a generation or two, in effect pruning the Jewish genetic tree. But many converts became interwoven into the Jewish genealogical line. Reflect on the iconic convert, the biblical Ruth, who married Boaz and became the great-grandmother of King David. She began as an outsider, but you don’t get much more Jewish than the bloodline of King David!

To his credit, Ostrer also addresses the third rail of discussions about Jewishness and race: the issue of intelligence. Jews were latecomers to the age of freethinking. While the Enlightenment swept through Christian Europe in the 17th century, the Haskalah did not gather strength until the early 19th century. By the beginning of the new millennium, however, Jews were thought of as among the smartest people on earth. The trend is most prominent in America, which has the largest concentration of Jews outside Israel and a history of tolerance.

Although Jews make up less than 3% of the population, they have won more than 25% of the Nobel Prizes awarded to American scientists since 1950. Jews also account for 20% of this country’s chief executives and make up 22% of Ivy League students. Psychologists and educational researchers have pegged their average IQ at 107.5 to 115, with their verbal IQ at more than 120, a stunning standard deviation above the average of 100 found in those of European ancestry. Like it or not, the IQ debate will become an increasingly important issue going forward, as medical geneticists focus on unlocking the mysteries of the brain.

Many liberal Jews maintain, at least in public, that the plethora of Jewish lawyers, doctors and comedians is the product of our cultural heritage, but the science tells a more complex story. Jewish success is a product of Jewish genes as much as of Jewish moms.

Is it “good for the Jews” to be exploring such controversial subjects? We can’t avoid engaging the most challenging questions in the age of genetics. Because of our history of endogamy, Jews are a goldmine for geneticists studying human differences in the quest to cure disease. Because of our cultural commitment to education, Jews are among the top genetic researchers in the world.

As humankind becomes more genetically sophisticated, identity becomes both more fluid and more fixed. Jews in particular can find threads of our ancestry literally anywhere, muddying traditional categories of nationhood, ethnicity, religious belief and “race.” But such discussions, ultimately, are subsumed by the reality of the common shared ancestry of humankind. Ostrer’s “Legacy” points out that — regardless of the pros and cons of being Jewish — we are all, genetically, in it together. And, in doing so, he gets it just right.

26 thoughts on “Jews Are a ‘Race,’ Genes Reveal

  1. Pingback: Jews Are a ‘Race,’ Genes Reveal | Afro Futurism

  2. “Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York”.
    Is this curious naming because physicists would refuse to work in any building named after a Jew plagiarist fraud? Seems a weird name. Why not name an Albert Einstein College Of Weapons Of Mass Destruction? This would be an honest name and WMDs are big business and highly profitable.


    Harry Ostrer is a fraud and he cooked the books to fabricate his theory. He has been proven to be a fraud. See:

    Judaists are mostly whites whose ancestors converted to Judaism in the Middle Ages (Ashkenazim). These whites mixed in with Shephardic people so some of them have mixed features.


    As reported in the Jewish daily Forward:

    “Scientists usually don’t call each other “liars” and “frauds.”
    “But that’s how Johns Hopkins University post-doctoral researcher Eran Elhaik describes a group of widely respected geneticists, including Harry Ostrer…”

    In fact, I heard years ago that somebody once offered a big (million dollar?) prize to anybody who can name one gene (or set of genes) that is present in all Jewish people and absent from all non-Jewish people. No takers yet.

    This should be obvious, because people convert in and out of Judaism. When they do, do they get a gene transplant in every cell of their body?

    No, of course, not. Judaism is a religion, not a race.

    • I had heard that DNA tests do show Jew genes. They have some unique features like the conk, weasel like oily heads, dark curly hair, most unattractive for so called whites. Others are blond with blue eyes.
      The Hollywood types are unmistakable and they do not look white to me. Especially the Producer types, with the big bucks.
      The Jew is generally short, swarthy and ugly.
      Judaism is not a religion. Jews are atheists and a tribe. They believe they are the Chosen People – they chose themselves and they believe they are god.

  5. Whatever you call them, jews are NOT White. Many jews do have ‘white skins’, but that is camouflage covering for the treachery and crafty cunning which the jews exercise against Whites, and ultimately White countries.

    There are some who would disagree that jews are a race, and there are arguments supportive of each position. Regardless of how they are classified, the jews have acted as enemies toward White people (as well as other races) throughout all of history, and in a historical sense it has not been all that long since the jews were expelled, en masse, from almost all and each of our White countries, with the process being repeated by each country one by one. One man who disputed that the jews were a race seems to have been a South African Nationalist, and this quote is from some of my old files.

    “(1) They are not a race. This is proven from jewish sources in regard to Falashim or Black jews; Benai Israel or Indian jews; Chinese jews, who look Chinese to a foreigner, but who are not real Chinese; the Sephardim or semitic jews; and the Ashkenazim or “Russian” jews, who are most likely to have White genes. These people converted to Judaism in 700 A.D. Many of them resemble White people, but all of them, according to “The Genetics of the Jews” have Afro-Asian genes, including the blondest of them. Blond, blue-eyed people with Afro-Asian genes are not White, but mongrels.

    (2) Jews are not a religious group, for they include atheists. Two thirds of the “jewish” population of Israel are not religious, but claim to be “jewish” through their mothers, which is how Orthodox rabbis define “jewishness”. A White person who ‘converts’ to Judaism will not be deemed a jew by Orthodox rabbis.

    (3) Jews are not an ethnic group because they reside in all parts of the world and resemble their host peoples in looks, language, and often, in religion. Yet, they consider themselves jews. What can be their common bond? Not religion, not race, not ethnicity, but economy! It’s their rackets which bind them together as jews, exactly as the “patels” are bound together by their caste-determined role as merchants. Such disparate groups maintain cohesion with their common interests, and behave like a nation among nations. Yet, they are not a nation, which is comprised of people with a common genetic origin.

    It is extremely dangerous to admit jews into White Nationalist groups, for I have had firsthand experience of their sudden betrayal of White interests in Rhodesia and South Africa. One day they were “White”. Next day they were sneering at us as “you White people”. Jews officially declared themselves non-White in 1972, as quoted in The Rand Daily Mail of May 15, 1972.”

    • I do disagree with the contention stated in the quote that jews are not a nation. All of jewry are organized into differing networks which work together without any real disruption against our individualistic White people.

      Working intentionally, as well as cooperating internationally, almost all jews operate from behind the cover of various organizations, many of which the jews themselves have created. Collectively these constitute many different networks working together, all who do work against Whites while pretending that they are “not against any race, creed, nationality, gender or sexual orientation”.

      The jews then create and expand those networks so that various other networks are created in order to cater to other non-Whites – All of them operating under the direction and control of jews of course.

      The jews have also created networks among white people who do work which is favorable to and under the direction of jewry.

      The jews of every country are linked together into differing networks, and all of them work together to the exclude others who do believe in their own people’s racial and national pride. The only exclusions are to those of differing races allow the jews to direct their activities against White people and countries, so long as they defer to the jew’s inclusionary doctrines which the jews then use to break the power of others over their own destinies, and their own countries.

    • Yep, noticed that a lot. Many jews that speak against “white priviledge” talk as if they are whites, but then on other occasions they speak like they’re jewish. Really annoying. And if i’m not mistaken even Nixon knew that jews were treacherous.

      • So what if Nixon said that?

        Henry Kissinger said “A people who have been hated that much must be doing something wrong”

        What difference do these quotes make?

      • It makes it known to us that those closer to the flame know to be true what we could only previously suspect. That’s the difference these quotes make.

    • The Chinese Jews are not converts. They have interbred with the locals, but you can still tell them apart if you look for the signs. They are just as easy to spot as White Jews. Look closely at any Chinese with the name Liu, Jin etc. These names were given to them by an emperor.

  6. “From time immemorial. however, the Jews have known better than any
    others how falsehood and calumny can be exploited. Is not their very
    existence founded on one great lie, namely, that they are a religious
    community, whereas in reality they are a race? And what a race!” ~ Mein Kampf

  7. Pal, you are being censored again. I try to post link to book about Chinese Jews, Indian Jews etc and it doesn’t work.

  8. A commenter has this to say re a story about the jew, Chuckie Schumer, who is reportedly devising a plan to stop Trump’s border wall with Mexico. I think he is right. What about you?

    “I truly believe that Media, Hollywood, and the Congress together constitute the largest and most successful pedophile ring in America. They encircle Trump, who is the representative of all the good that is left in this country, and are trying to make him, and us by proxy, their ultimate blood-sacrifice. We are facing a moral Armageddon folks, and must absolutely fight these devils off! If not, this country will sink into a permanent abyss, and we will surely become a Third-World shithole. The same kind of war is also being waged against our brothers and sisters in Europe, by this very same Jew-sponsored and financed international world-pedophile ring. They are all one evil Satanic bunch. The Jew Joan Rivers was not bullshitting when she said Obama was a fag and his man-wife a tranny. She told the faggot reporter whom she ran across that day, “WE all know it; so, just calm down!” By WE she meant, “All of us in the gigantic Jew-controlled and financed world-pedophile ring.”

  9. “The Jewish People are Against Border Security”

    “These are the same people whose own country (which is never the country they reside in) already has a big beautiful wall. Israel already has stringent immigration protocols in place. Despite being a wealthy first world nation directly adjoining Syria, Israel will be taking in no refugees whatsoever. Yes. The Jewish people are that hypocritical, and they believe they have the influence, money, power, and moral authority to be that hypocritical. Their homeland is very precious and cannot be defiled or threatened, …but your homeland is an open dumping ground for the alienated and radicalized victims of their failed globalist military exploits.

    Don’t take my word about the Jews. Listen to their own words in the coming weeks and months as they convince you in their own words that they’re categorically opposed to putting America First. Listen to them as they work to convince you that they resent the traditional American nation and its people. Listen to them as they walk you through each and every aspect of their hypocritical, hysterical, and hateful worldview. Only then, perhaps, will you listen to me when I tell you that the Jewish Problem is the West’s foremost problem.

    It’s greater than illegal immigration. It’s greater than Islamic immigration. It’s greater than our racial strife. It’s greater than the economic problems. It’s greater than the social problems. The Jewish Problem is the singular problem which stops us from arriving at pragmatic solutions to every other problem we face.”

  10. Once again, a Jew bragging about Jewish intellectual superiority, but notice, the IQ’s she mentions are those of Ashkenazi, not Sephardi at 96, and Mizrahi, 93. Black Jewish IQ’s are in the 70’s and low 80’s.

    Let’s average those scores, I’ll use 111 for Jews, average of 107.5 and 115, 96 for Sephardi, and 93 for Mizrahi is 100, the same as all Europeans together.

    Then, she uses the 115 rather than the 107.5, compares the 115 to Europeans and says it’s a “STUNNING” standard deviation above Europeans at 100. She should compare the 107.5 to Germans at 109. I guess I’m preaching to the choir again, but sometimes Jews read this site.

    Charles Murray updated his Ashkenazi IQ in 2005 at 108 down from 115, saying the groups that were previously studied were much too small at around 30. If we pass around lies enough, they eventually become truths.

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