Paul Gottfried, the Jewish Intellectual Godfather of the Alt-Right

A retired history professor, the child of refugees from pre-World War II Europe, a life-long secular Jew, a graduate of Yeshiva University, a critic of “white nationalism,” and a disciple of the New Left philosopher Herbert Marcuse, Paul Gottfried is not the man most would expect to be the leading theorist of the self-styled “alt-right.” But Gottfried claims to have “co-created” the term with his erstwhile disciple Richard Spencer, now famous for shouting “Hail Trump!” at a Washington, DC conference. (Spencer insists he invented the term independently, when composing a title for an article by Gottfried.) Jacob Siegel writes:

Paul Edward Gottfried was born in 1941 in the Bronx, seven years after his father, Andrew, immigrated to America. Andrew Gottfried, a successful furrier in Budapest, fled Hungary shortly after Austria’s Chancellor Dollfuss was assassinated by Nazi agents in the “July putsch.” He had sensed that Central Europe would be squeezed in a vise between the Nazis and the Soviets and decided to take his chances in Bridgeport, Connecticut, where the family moved shortly after Paul was born. . . .

[As a student at Yeshiva University in New York], Gottfried was put off by his “bright” but “clannish” outer-borough Orthodox Jewish classmates. New York was farther from Connecticut than he’d imagined. His fellow students, [in his words], “seemed to carry with them the social gracelessness of having grown up in a transported Eastern European ghetto.”

It used to be common among assimilated Americans Jews from Central European backgrounds to look down on what they saw as the poorer, more provincial Jews from the Russian empire. . . . When Gottfried goes after the mostly Eastern Europe-originating Jewish “neocons” and “New York intellectuals” whom he blames for kneecapping his career and refusing to give him his intellectual due, it’s not just the actual injury that wounds him, but the indignity of being laid low by his inferiors.

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More about: Alt-Right, American politics, Conservatism, Immigration, Politics & Current Affairs

Terror Returns to Israel

Nov. 28 2022

On Wednesday, a double bombing in Jerusalem left two dead, and many others injured—an attack the likes of which has not been seen since 2016. In a Jenin hospital, meanwhile, armed Palestinians removed an Israeli who had been injured in a car accident, reportedly murdering him in the process, and held his body hostage for two days. All this comes as a year that has seen numerous stabbings, shootings, and other terrorist attacks is drawing to a close. Yaakov Lappin comments:

Unlike the individual or small groups of terrorists who, acting on radical ideology and incitement to violence, picked up a gun, a knife, or embarked on a car-ramming attack, this time a better organized terrorist cell detonated two bombs—apparently by remote control—at bus stops in the capital. Police and the Shin Bet have exhausted their immediate physical searches, and the hunt for the perpetrators will now move to the intelligence front.

It is too soon to know who, or which organization, conducted the attack, but it is possible to note that in recent years, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) has taken a lead in remote-control-bombing terrorism. Last week, a car bomb that likely contained explosives detonated by remote control was discovered by the Israel Defense Forces in Samaria, after it caught fire prematurely. In August 2019, a PFLP cell detonated a remote-control bomb in Dolev, seventeen miles northwest of Jerusalem, killing a seventeen-year-old Israeli girl and seriously wounding her father and brother. Members of that terror cell were later arrested.

With the Palestinian Authority (PA) losing its grip in parts of Samaria to armed terror gangs, and the image of the PA at an all-time low among Palestinians, in no small part due to corruption, nepotism, and its violation of human rights . . . the current situation does not look promising.

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More about: Israeli Security, Jerusalem, Palestinian terror