Essays on the Ideology, Organisation
and Practice of Zionism


by Yuri Ivanov

Moscow Progress Publishers, 1970.

[CAUTION: ZIONISM! by Soviet Marxist historian Yuri Ivanov, is a convincing exposé of modern Zionism as an ideology, a system of organisations and the practical policies of the wealthy Jewish bourgeoisie.  Basing his arguments on numerous documents and facts, the author shows that Zionism has been and is a bellicose reactionary force working against the genuine national interests of all people, the Israeli people inclusive.]

—Description on the back cover.




I      Myth and Reality

II     “A Time to Cast Stones and a Time to Gather Stones Together”

III    Roofless Labyrinth

IV   Crossroads

V    Caution: Zionism!


“To fellow countrymen and foreign comrades whose kind advice has been of such help.”

Yuri Ivanov





Gone are the days when the enemies of the young Soviet republic fervently awaited the collapse of the world’s first workers’ and peasants’ state. The Land of Soviets proved its viability in the face of armed intervention and its magnificent performance in the life-and-death struggle against the nazi hordes already belongs to history. Gone, indeed, are many of the illusions harboured by the enemies of communism, but not their hatred and their intention to continue the struggle with all the means that remain at their disposal.

Lenin held that it was the fundamental duty of the Soviet press to make a concrete analysis of the forces acting against communism, however secondary they might appear at first glance. This book makes a study of modern Zionism, one of the most tenacious, though veiled varieties of anti-communism.

Meir Vilner, Secretary of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Israel, wrote in a letter to Soviet journalists in January 1968: “Zionism is, alas, a ‘forgotten’ question but nonetheless a most actual one. . . .”   How right he is!  For a long time many champions of Zionism were sparing no efforts to make Zionism appear nothing more than an obsolete term. It would be rash to think of it as being purely by chance that what is in effect a bellicose reactionary force should have managed until recently to avoid world public attention. This was without doubt one of the main factors on which the existence of an international corporation of Zionists operating in the interests of imperialist reaction depended.

At the time when the World Zionist Organisation (WZO) was being formed, Lenin with his habitual foresight noted on more than one occasion that Zionism was a reactionary trend of the Jewish bourgeoisie.

Are there any historical facts or fresh data requiring that this appraisal be revised (something on which Zionists and their supporters have been focussing their efforts for many years)? There are no such facts. Indeed, there are hundreds of facts pointing to the contrary; they are to be found first and foremost in Zionist documents and Zionist political literature, which are eloquent proof that Lenin’s definition of Zionism holds good to this day. Moreover, unanimously supported by the imperialist forces and having assimilated most trends of Jewish bourgeois nationalism, Zionism has become the major trend of the latter and acquired new reactionary features.

Modern Zionism is the ideology, a ramified system of organisations and the practical politics of the wealthy Jewish bourgeoisie which has closely allied itself with monopoly circles in the USA and other imperialist countries. The main content of Zionism is bellicose chauvinism and anti-communism.

Attacking the socialist community, the international communist and working-class movement, Zionism is also opposing the national liberation movement. Practical proof of this is the aggression of the Israeli militarists against the Arab states which began in June 1967.

Two basic categories of people were impressed by the military results of this aggression: the traditionally narrow-minded and short-sighted Philistines in a number of countries, and the revanchists in Bonn who still take delight in the idea of a blitzkrieg.

But the tragedy in the Middle East compelled the vast majority of people, who have no use for superficial appraisals of developments, to search for answers to a whole range of fundamental questions: what forces created the initial impression that here was Israel taking on a whole group of Arab states “single-handed”? Who managed to preparatorily brainwash a section of the public in West European countries and the USA in favour of the Israeli militarists? Who gathered intelligence and uncovered some of the military and state secrets of the Arab countries? Who helped Israel arrange financial and military deals in absolute secrecy?

Since all this could not possibly have been accomplished solely by Israel’s secret service and her propaganda machinery, there is a clear inference of co-operation between the Israeli militarists and the ruling circles of the imperialist powers. Correct as this assumption may be, it is not a sufficient explanation1 and suggests the existence of an intermediate link which helped Israel to make secret preparations for her latest expansionist move and attempt to overthrow the progressive regimes in the United Arab Republic and Syria by force. The international Zionist association played this role, acting as a secret channel between the most reactionary forces of the imperialist states, especially the USA, the FRG and Britain, on the one hand, and the Israeli militarists, on the other.

[NOTE:  1.   During the aggression official propaganda in France, for example, was not pro-Israeli because of the de Gaulle Governments’ foreign policy, and pro-Israeli propaganda was conducted by French WZO branches.]

It would be wrong, however, to think of international Zionism’s role in the Middle East conflict as being solely that of a connecting link. In very general terms the pattern of dependence of the main participants in the aggression is as follows: the Israeli militarists—international Zionism—Western imperialist circles headed by the USA.

The Israeli ruling circles are junior partners in the international Zionist concern: this is indeed one of the most important conditions of their existence as ruling circles. The “Zionist Concern,” represented by the World Zionist Organisation, the World Jewish Congress, which is really a branch of the former, and numerous of her offshoots, whose role is sometimes more important than that played by organisations with a signboard at their entrance, is at the same time one of the world’s largest associations of finance capital, a self-styled global “ministry” for the affairs of “world Jewry,” an international intelligence centre, and a well-run misinformation and propaganda service. The cardinal aim of the concern’s “departments” whose operations are guided from a single centre, is amassment of profits and wealth ensuring them power and a parasitical well-being within the imperialist system. Needless to say, defence and consolidation of imperialism’s positions is part and parcel of this main objective of international Zionism.

Economically, the World Zionist Organisation has very close ties with the monopolies of the major imperialist powers, and especially the United States. Like the US monopolies, the Zionist concern has an extensive and longstanding range of “business interests” in the Middle East. This being the case, its role in that part of the world has been far more than that of “messenger boy.” The Zionist concern acted as an “employer” with regard to Israeli ruling circles, while in its dealings with the US monopolies it was by no means a minor participant in the criminal scramble for spoils in the finance jungle.

The “Six Day War” was not the first and probably not the last venture of international Zionism, whose range of interests and plans is not limited to the area of the Suez Canal. But the aggression of June 1967 was one of the rare occasions on which international Zionism, breaking the old and firmly established rules of its game, slightly lifted the veil shrouding its activity. Israel’s Prime Minister Levi Eshkol let the cat out of the bag when he mentioned the sum which Zionist organisations freely granted Israeli ruling circles shortly after the outbreak of the war; an international conference of Jewish millionaires was held in Israel; and to the amazement of millions of their fellow countrymen, Zionists in a number of countries widely celebrated the successes of the Israeli armed forces. However, it must be stressed that this was a rare episode in the history of the international Zionist association, which prefers more covert forms of activity.

Over the last decade Zionist specialists in camouflage have developed a tendency to talk about a “complete collapse” of Zionism. Laments and mournful wails ring out from the rostrums of international Zionist get-togethers. This campaign is skilfully fanned by the Zionist press. Here, for example, is what the Israeli Zionist newspaper Mibbifnim wrote between the 1957 and 1967 acts of aggression in the Middle East: “Zionism is beset by a severe, unprecedented crisis. . . . It is a three-sided crisis—involving the ideology, movement and practice of Zionism. . . . Its scale and depth show that this is not a transitory phenomenon, engendered by economic or political difficulties or controversy over current issues. The crisis affects the very heart of our movement, its core, the centre of the Jewish problem. . . . The crisis is just so serious in that it arises from the inside, from the heart of the movement, from the heart of its political and ideological leadership.” 2   But it would be a mistake to ignore the real aims of the authors of such remarks.

Zionism is a reactionary system of views and a system of reactionary organisations serving imperialism.  In other words, Zionism is a class phenomenon.  And Zionism, like the whole imperialist system, is indeed in a state of profound crisis.  Nevertheless, on the basis of facts that shed light on the ruses of Zionist propaganda-makers, the only conclusion to be drawn is that the potentialities, freedom of manoeuvre, the destiny and ultimate doom of Zionism are directly contingent to the possibilities, destiny and ultimate doom of the exploiter class, on the destiny and doom of imperialism.

Zionism naturally finds it more and more difficult to operate in our day and age. But it is still a highly experienced, cunning enemy of internationalism, the friendship and fraternity of all nations, a dangerous instrument in the hands of imperialist reaction.

People who know little or nothing about Zionism tend to associate it either with the State of Israel as a whole, or with the Jews in general. It is these erroneous notions that best of all suit the leaders of international Zionism and are cultivated by Zionist propaganda.

Since a considerable number of Jewish working people in different countries, including Israel, forthrightly reject Zionist views, the leaders of Zionism are vitally concerned that all Jews, wherever they are and whatever their views, should be classed as Zionists, so that the “waverers” are pushed into serving Zionism’s criminal aims.


2. Sneh, M. and Vilenska, K., Crisis of Zionism, Tel Aviv, 1961, p.3 (re-translated from the Russian).

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