One of my long-running themes is that the American Establishment’s Russophobia in this decade is related to American Jews’ traditional anti-Czarism. They see Putin, much as I suspect Putin sees himself, as a neo-Czar, and assume he must therefore be anti-Semitic (which Putin strongly rejects). Therefore, we need a neo-Cold War against the neo-Czar.
Living in my native San Fernando Valley, however, with the huge number of Israelis, Russians, and Ukrainians who have arrived over the last 30 to 40 years, everything seems more complicated and blurrier. The Valley is full of people who are kind of Israeli, kind of Russian, and/or kind of Ukrainian, so the American Establishment’s assumption that the great struggle of our time is against the anti-Semitic neo-Czarists seems silly. Practically nobody in Israel sees it that way.
For example, I was just now looking up on Wikipedia the biography of General Benny Gantz, the left candidate against Bibi Netanyahu in Israel’s interminable series of elections. Of course, “left” is relative when it comes to Israel, which is now such a right wing country that Gantz’s campaign ads feature a tribute to his greatest war crimes against the Palestinians of the Gaza Strip:
So General Gantz is no squish. My impression from looking at a lot of pictures of Gantz is that he reminds me of an executive I knew during my corporate career who looked like a nice guy, and most of the time he was, but who was absolutely ruthless about doing what was best for the bottom line.
Therefore, I was struck by this paragraph in his rather brief biography on English-language Wikipedia:
Gantz was the chairman of the Fifth Dimension, a computer security and law enforcement technology company, which specialized in tracking via smartphone spyware.
My impression since Carl Cannon’s spiked 2001 Fox News series has been that the Israeli Deep State specializes in encouraging friendly capitalists to invest in software companies that can spy on people in the rest of the world through their telephones.
The company closed due to financial reasons, after its Russian investor Viktor Vekselberg was sanctioned under CAATSA by the United States during the Special Counsel investigation into Russian attempts to interfere with the US election, led by Robert Mueller.
And who is Gantz’s pal Viktor Vekselberg?
Well, he’s another one of these blurry Russian, Jewish, and Ukrainian characters. From Wikipedia:
Viktor Felixovich Vekselberg (Russian: Виктор Феликсович Вексельберг, Ukrainian: Віктор Феліксович Вексельберг; born 14 April 1957) is a Russian businessman. He is the owner and president of Renova Group, a Russian conglomerate. According to Forbes, as of October 2019, his fortune is estimated at $11.4 billion, making him the 119th richest person in the world.
Vekselberg is close to the Kremlin, overseeing projects to modernize the Russian economy. In April 2018, the United States imposed sanctions on him and 23 other Russian nationals. On May 9, 2018, CNN reported that investigators from the Special Counsel investigation have questioned Vekselberg about hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments his company’s US affiliate made to US President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen. …
Viktor Vekselberg was born in 1957 to a Ukrainian-Jewish father and a Russian mother in Drohobych, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic (although some reports state that he was born in Lviv). …
Vekselberg is the single largest owner of Fabergé eggs in the world, owning fifteen of them (nine Imperial, two Kelch, and four other Fabergé eggs). …
In September 2006, Vekselberg agreed to pay approximately $1 million in expenses to transport the Lowell House Bells from Harvard University in the United States back to their original location in the Danilov Monastery and to purchase replacement bells. …
Vekselberg is a longtime friend and business partner of British-American billionaire and major Republican Party donor Leonard Blavatnik, who is close to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. …
He donated $4.5 million to the construction of the $50 million Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center in Moscow, and is the chairman of the museum’s board of trustees. He finances the restoration and construction of synagogues in Russia, including the construction of the Choral Synagogue in Saratov.
He is married to Marina and has two children, a daughter and a son. His father is Jewish, and his mother Christian. He identifies himself as multi-national and does not attend weekly synagogue or church services.
Vekselberg is one of many Russian “oligarchs” named in the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, CAATSA, signed into law by President Donald Trump in 2017. …
A cybersecurity startup company associated with Israeli Prime Minister candidate, Benny Gantz, closed due to funds that the U.S. had frozen belonging to the subject who was an investor in Gantz’s tech company, The Fifth Dimension and who was caught up in the Mueller probe of Stormy Daniel’s payoff by former Trump lawyer, Michael Cohen, who had developed close ties with the subject.
Okay, admittedly, I have no clue how to make sense of this complex web of friendships and enmities, but Vekselberg is clearly a guy who knows a lot of guys.
Anyway, my point is that the world does not actually appear to be divided up into the irreconcilably anti-Semitic bloc of Russia and Iran and the pro-Semitic Free World led by America and Israel. In reality, there are all sorts of talented and energetic people who float in-between.
And that’s good news, assuming we Americans aren’t too stupid to notice.