At the end of the 5th episode of the Abraham and AnneMarie series, the hostility towards the Jews is confirmed by the challenge of their traditions: In 139 BC, the Jews were expelled from Alexandria after being accused of proselytizing.
Still in search of the causes of anti-Semitism, we begin this 6th episode in AD 12 under the sovereignty of Gaius Caligula Roman Emperor from AD 12 to AD 41 as Rome reigns supreme over the world. In 19, as it happened for similar reasons over a hundred years before Jesus, the Jews were again driven out of Alexandria by Tiberius. Subsequently, in 38, they are victims of aggression provoked by a group of Hellenized Egyptians. Ostracism against Jews sets in. Looting and massacres followed: the first pogrom in recorded history, which resulted in the confining of the Jews to a ghetto, and the start of the forced relegation to which the Jews would be subjected for 2,000 years. The Hebrew people have the courage to hold on to their religious beliefs and customs, but do not try to impose them by force; it is to its credit that it remains true to its faith despite the dangers it faces. Certainly not a reason to blame the Jewish community to the point of confining it in closed spaces.
The aversion to Jews is fueled by slanderous beliefs, steadfast prejudices, and vile accusations such as being Deicide. Because of this unhappy Jesus, cowardly abandoned by Pontius Pilate, prefect of the province of Judea, who ordered the execution and crucifixion of this Jewish preacher. Then “he washed his hands of it” and let his Roman minions act. Somehow, the successor of Caligula, the emperor Claudius who reigned between 41 and 54, suppresses the riots and publishes two edicts: in one, he reaffirms the rights of the Jews of Alexandria to keep their religion and their leader community, while ordering the two sworn enemies to keep the peace. In another edict, published worldwide, Claudius reaffirms the same privileges to the rest of the Jews of the Roman Empire. He also spoke out in their favor in their dispute with the Samaritans and banished the incumbent procurator. Influenced by his friendship with the family of the famous General Agrippa, the grand condottiere took steps to secure the rights of Jews in other parts of the empire, quelled unrest against them in Alexandria and had their privileges restored.
However, it has been reported by some historians that Emperor Claudius curiously turned his jacket around afterwards. He then ordered the Jews not to hold meetings in Rome in the synagogues, not to engage in certain activities which, if they were carried out, would draw his “fury” against them !!! He also urged them not to campaign for more privileges than they already had. Very angry, the emperor tried through all kinds of threats to restrict Jewish expansion with the intention of limiting any further religious or political unrest. These multiple prohibitions, failing to quell the unrelenting ardor of the Hebrews, would ultimately have led Claudius to expel the Jews from Rome.
The next chef after Claudius is Néron from 54 to 68, Emperor recognized by Jews and Christians as a persecutor of their worship, the latter assimilating him to the Antichrist. The great revolt broke out in Judea in the summer of 66, for complex causes because the result of various motivations and manipulations: tax increases, terrorism of the Sicarii (Jewish extremist dissidents), counter-terrorism of the Romans and resentments between the lower clergy and the high clergy. Good reasons which mixed with the apocalyptic sermons, made it possible to mobilize the crowds.
Once the Romans were defeated and the first counteroffensive repulsed, the local population split into several groups without coming to an understanding. From the winter of 68, the quarrels turned into civil war and bloodied the country. Commissioned by Nero to put and end to the insurrection, General Vespasian surrounded Jerusalem and waited for the Jews to deplete their food and supply. In recent weeks, these struggles between rival parties have led to the burning of food reserves in the besieged city, which finally falls despite fierce resistance. In 70 an army commander named Titus led the Roman legions and reconquered Jerusalem. During street fighting, the city is destroyed and the Second Temple, also known as the Temple of Herod, is set on fire.
Lowering your arms, crashing and crying on defeat is not in the Jewish mentality. The Jews know how to recover and move on, even under Roman dictatorship. They resume their occupations and work hard to get their business back on track.Fueled by envy and jealousy, anti-Semitism roots deeper in. The Jews are accused of all kinds of sins … greed, dishonesty. All thieves … Slander and lies amplified over time, perpetuate until today.
Many of you know in detail the events of this era, but I think that to synthesize them as I do with Abraham et Anne-Marie will help us fight together against anti-Semitism that continues to be exercised with violence thousands of years later. Nowadays in 2021 Israel is fired upon with rockets in its territories and when the Israelis respond, the whole world accuses them of bellicism.
Yesterday a gentleman called me when I was upset because I had just learned a terrible news from Tel Aviv, two close friends had died during the fighting currently taking place in Israel, he replied: Jews reap what they sowed. – What fault are they guilty of? In what circumstances? Should they be shot – without saying anything. Without doing anything ?