The Jewish Origins of the Open Borders Movement


In a 2015 essay on ‘Whiteness studies’ I attempted to lay the groundwork and contextualization for a more developed study of the scale and devastating impact of contemporary Jewish intellectual activism in our colleges, universities, and wider culture. In that essay I noted the importance of Jewish activists including Noel Ignatiev, Ruth Frankenberg, Ricky Marcuse, and Terry Berman, who between the mid-1970s and late 1990s engaged in an effort to develop an academic discipline known as ‘Whiteness studies.’ Since its inception, Whiteness studies has occupied a unique space in an increasingly multicultural disciplinary landscape. Unlike Black studies, Jewish studies, or Asian studies, this sphere of academia is not intended to constructively explore the achievements, history, and culture of its scrutinized ethnic group. Rather, the genre exists to subject ‘Whiteness,’ and by implication White people, to a uniquely hostile dialectic consisting of the debasement of White culture, the degradation of White history, and the delegitimization of the European claim to existence. As such, the discipline may be regarded as an act of ethnic warfare, based as it is on the intended conquest of minds and consciences, and eventually, resources and territory.

In all Western countries, Whiteness studies, in both its academic and social justice expressions, remains disproportionately directed by Jews. This is an empirically observable fact. A book could be written on Jewish involvement in this academic “discipline” alone, but it should suffice here for a brief survey of some key examples. These include Syracuse University’s Barbara Applebaum, who has made a career out of advancing notions of ‘White guilt’ and ending what she describes as “White moral innocence.” In a similar vein is Leeds University’s Say Burgin, who teaches a course titled “Why is my curriculum White?,” while University of California’s George Lipsitz, author of How Racism Takes Place, has also written several books on ‘Whiteness’ and White guilt. Jewish feminist Michelle Fine, based at City University of New York, has produced numerous works on “White privilege,” including her book Witnessing Whiteness. Other Jewish academics highly active in the Whiteness Studies field include Lois Weis, David Theo Goldberg, Maurice Berger, Lawrence Grossberg, Jennifer Roth-Gordon, Cynthia Levine-Rasky, Laura S. Abrams, Judith Katz, Melissa Steyn, Paula Rothenberg, and Amy Eshleman.

Jewish involvement is perhaps even more intense in the sphere of so-called social justice activism. One of the foremost operators of “Whiteness workshops” in the United States is Dara Silverman. Silverman is a “consultant, organizer and trainer who has been building movements for economic, racial, gender and social justice for over 20 years. From January 2015 to July 2016, Dara was the founding Director of Showing up for Racial Justice (SURJ). As a consultant, Dara works with small and mid-sized groups to build their organizing skills, fundraising and organizational capacity. Dara was the Executive Director of Jews for Racial and Economic Justice (JFREJ) in New York City from 2003–2009.”

Notorious Jewish acitivist Tim Wise has praised Silverman as “a critical voice in the newly-invigorated movement of anti-racist white allies. A relentless co-conspirator with leaders of color in the struggle against white supremacy and racial inequity, Silverman’s grasp of movement building strategy is second to none.” Regarding the actual content of her work, Silverman offers to ‘cure’ Whites of their “toxic Whiteness” via workshops and ‘webinars.’ In essence, these efforts are programs of deracination, executed via psychological abuse centered on guilt inducement. This effort at separating a people from their identity is more than a little hypocritical given that Silverman has stated in at least one interview that “I’m Jewish and I have a pretty strong connection to Judaism.”

Dara Silverman

Dara Silverman

In addition to Silverman, many more Jews have been attracted to the despairingly lucrative and fashionable business of convincing Whites to abandon their identity. Among them are Jon Greenberg, author of “10 examples that prove White privilege protects White people in every aspect imaginable,” and “Talking to Kids about Whiteness.” Other prominent figures in the social justice sphere of the assault on Whiteness include Debbie Zucker and Robin Nussbaum. When New York’s Vassar College decided to hold a series of Whiteness workshops last October, the two workshop leaders were Diane Eshelman and Michael Drucker, both of whom are Jewish. While the weakening of the internal or psychological supports of White identity is sufficiently problematic in itself, the problem is compounded by intensive Jewish activism in other spheres of academic and ‘social justice’ activity. The most damaging in these respects are the Jewish dominance in ‘critical race theory,’ and its correspondent political expression in the form of the open borders movement.

Readers who have been observing the ongoing ‘refugee crisis’ over the last couple of years will most likely have come across the phrase “No one is illegal” at some point. The refrain is particularly popular in Germany, where Kein mensch ist illegal became the rallying cry of tens of thousands of successfully deracinated German liberals, and thus was a key feature of the migrant tsunami that would engulf that unfortunate nation.

And indeed, it was Germany that first gave birth to the term and the movement it would encapsulate. It was at the documenta X art exhibition in Kassel in 1997 that this particular ‘anti-racist’ movement is largely considered to have been formally founded. That year’s exhibition and the movement it spawned were organized by French-Jewish ‘Artistic Director’ Catherine David. David was keen to turn the entire exhibition into a political statement, something that didn’t endear her to some of Germany’s more conservative art critics. Undeterred, she turned the city of Kassel itself into a ‘lesson’ for gallery visitors, and one of her artist associates and fellow Jews, Lois Weinberger, even planted ‘flourishing weeds’ from southern and southeastern Europe along the disused tracks at Kassel’s main railway station as a metaphor for migration and a ‘post-national’ world. Amidst the flagrant promotion of fellow Jews Eva Hesse and Chantal Ackerman, it was the fervid Jewish intellectual atmosphere of documenta X, and its abstract theories about migration and ‘post-national’ identity, that gave rise to Kein Mensch ist Illegal, a phrase that those present borrowed from the writings of Elie Wiesel.

Although the formal origins of the movement may be traced to Kassel 1997, this was arguably only the spiritual birth of the group and its specific ideology. More formal codification of its theory would arrive in the early 2000s with the publication of British-Jewish intellectual Steve Cohen’s No One Is Illegal: Asylum and Immigration Control, Past and Present (2003). Cohen, who died in 2009, had by then worked for three decades as an immigration lawyer in Manchester, where he set up the Greater Manchester Immigration Aid Unit, and participated in Anti-Deportation Campaigns. He was a member of the International Marxist Group (IMG) from 1968 until the end of 1974, though he appears to have been very publicly engaged in Far Left politics until he was beaten unconscious by British Nationalists who broke up one of his meetings in 1976. Thereafter his public involvement appears to have lessened and took on a more reclusive aspect. Cohen was a member of the Jewish Socialist Group for most of his life, and he was a quintessential Jewish intellectual in that he was both prolific and intense, writing books, manifestos, and pamphlets about anti-Semitism, socialism, immigration, borders and the welfare state.

In 2003, Cohen capped thirty years of activism with the publication of his opus, No One Is Illegal. While the slogan-title was perfectly fitted to Cohen’s own ideological trajectory, he was also keenly aware of its resonance on the Continent, where it was the main statement of the Jewish-inspired transnational European open borders network which formed in the late 1990s. This network had by 2000 developed into the main grassroots grouping of radical migration-related politics on a European level. One of its primary tactics was the maintenance of an ongoing visible presence in border camps such as the notorious camp at Calais, along with political campaigns against migration control, and Europe-wide action days. Cohen’s contribution to such ‘direct action’ politics, via the publication of his book and an accompanying manifesto, was to provide both rarefied theory and abstract ‘moral’ justification.

Cohen’s theories were, and remain, extremely basic. They draw heavily from his Jewish background, in the sense that Cohen has a highly fluid, abstract, and nomadic attitude to the nation state and nationality in general. Having been wanderers upon the earth since pre-history, one can hardly be surprised that, Zionist distractions aside, Jews would continue to possess an aversion to “soil” nationalism, even if they maintain the absurd pretense that “blood” nationalism matters as little to them. The central issue here resides in the fact that Jews have been remarkably, and very problematically, insistent on corroding the soil-attachment of the settled peoples among whom they dwell. Steve Cohen was a perfect example of this highly corrosive force. In his 2003 No One Is Illegal manifesto he asserted that immigration controls “are inherently racist in that they are based on the crudest of all nationalisms — namely the assertion that the British have a franchise on Britain.”

In Cohen’s worldview the British, and Whites wherever they are, are mere squatters on land they can be rightfully dispossessed of. Their resources are free for the taking in the course of “competition.” Cohen, the apparent life-long Communist universalist, thus reveals a startlingly capitalist/social Darwinist view of land and territory, even to the extent of employing Capitalist language (‘franchise’) in order to make his point. This struck me at first reading as a vindication of Yockey’s idea that Marxism has an unshakeable “Capitalistic provenance,” but even stronger was the echo of the familiar socio-political position of ‘the Jew’ as both arch Communist and Capitalist.

Like that of many Jews, Cohen’s political ideology was itself fluid and lacking borders, characterized chiefly by racial opportunism. For instance, we know that Cohen would never say that the British were entitled to colonize Africa in the nineteenth century because of the absurdity of the “Africans having a franchise on Africa.” The reason for this is that Cohen’s theory, like anything derivative of Jewish Bolshevism, isn’t really about open borders, or Socialism, at all. It is instead about White dispossession. Cohen’s formulations and arguments all focus on non-White migrants seeking entry to historically White nations. His argument about the “franchise” on land is little more than a blueprint for dispossession, inspired by his own archaic Jewish grievances, real or imagined.

Cohen’s ‘theory’ progresses to the statement that immigration controls “are only explicable by racism. Their imposition is a result of and is a victory for racist, proto-fascist and actual fascist organizations. It is impossible to see how legislation brought into being by such means, legislation accompanied by the most vile racist imagery and assumptions, can ever be reconfigured and rendered ‘fair’.” It is difficult to imagine that anyone with a reasonable level of intelligence could ever accept arguments like these. Even setting aside racial prerogatives, the idea that immigration controls are “only explicable by racism” is incredibly weak given that it ignores the imperatives of national security, cultural preservation, and the protection of jobs, health, and wages. One assumes that Cohen would have seen “vile racist imagery” in even the most everyday concern of a British housewife that her child should have a place in the local school, or a bed in the local hospital. His argument relies on there being an “implicit Fascism” in these important facets of life in White nations. This was something that Cohen probably did perceive, but only because of the miasma of grievances, inadequacies, and psychological complexes implicit in his own ethnic background.

The third key argument of Cohen’s manifesto is that “the demand for ‘fair’ controls simply ignores the link between immigration controls and welfare entitlements. This link is itself intrinsically unfair — and racist.” Cohen’s preoccupations with ‘fairness’ and ‘racism’ are here employed again to obfuscate the genuine and necessary concern of citizens who have invested in a welfare system built and developed in a once ethnically-homogenous and high-trust society. Cohen viewed the desire of the British to stop immigrant non-investors from reaping disproportionate gains from their welfare state as ‘unfair’ and ‘racist.’ To paraphrase our Jewish theorist, Cohen refuses to accept that foreigners do not have a “franchise” on British money. Cohen also refuses to acknowledge that a state with no borders will in time cease to be a state at all. In such an environment a ‘welfare state’ becomes an impossibility.

The final facet of Cohen’s ‘Open Borders’ manifesto ends with the assertion that “controls can never be ‘fair’ to those who remain subject to them.” Cohen’s argument here is based on a putative entitlement of the foreigner. Cohen’s believes that the stranger is entitled to limitless acquiescence. ‘Fairness,’ in Cohen’s mind, is the opening of the gates of Britain, a tiny country already struggling with a population of 64 million, to a world holding 7.5 billion people. ‘Fairness’ in this calculation amounts to national suicide, not merely in the sense of the forfeiture of national borders and institutions, but the total annihilation of the organic nation in the form of the British people. In this sense, it is a manifesto for genocide.

This sinister document was the foundation stone of the ‘No One is Illegal’ movement in Britain, where a group adopting the same name was launched under the leadership and direction of Steve Cohen, his co-ethnic associate David Landau, and two women of unknown provenance. Over the last few years No One Is Illegal groups have been formed throughout Europe and the United States: Spain (Ninguna Persona Es Ilegal), Sweden (Ingen Manniska Ar Illegal), Poland (Zaden Czlowiek Nie Jest Nielegalny) and Holland (Geen Mens Is Illegaal). These groups have been allied to growing activist organizations calling themselves ‘No Borders.’

Far from declining with the death of Steve Cohen, the Jewish prominence in the Open Borders movement has perhaps become even more acute in recent years. The range of theory underpinning the effort has also slightly diversified. George Mason University professor Bryan Caplan is the founder of and is the most visible North American figure calling for an end to immigration control. Just last year Caplan wrote an article for TIME in which he argued that “instead of redoubling our efforts to curtail immigration, we should return to the historic American policy of open borders—admitting everyone eager to come build a better life for themselves.” Unlike Cohen’s arguments, Caplan relies on an exclusively capitalist appeal — the lie that open borders will mean the influx of immigrants who will make American’s richer. As far as lies go, this must rank somewhere alongside that of Menasseh Ben Israel (1604–1657), who not only told Oliver Cromwell that a readmission of Jews to England would make the nation richer, but that it would also lead to the imminent return of Jesus Christ.

Bryan Caplan

Bryan Caplan

Caplan boldly claims, without statistics or evidence, that “immigrants, like tourists, are normally paying customers, not beggars.” However, we know from statistics that they are beggars. It has been estimated that “40% of young Muslims in France and 50% in Germany are unemployed and in receipt of social benefits. For example, an estimated 40% of welfare outlays in Denmark go to the 5% of the population that is Muslim. According to Otto Schily, former German interior minister, speaking of immigrants in general: “Seventy percent of the newcomers [since 2002] land on welfare the day of their arrival.” In Sweden, perhaps the most acute case, immigrants are estimated at 1.5 million out of 10 million people; immigration is estimated to cost almost $14 billion per year.” Completely ignoring this reality, Caplan’s refrain is that “immigrants are rarely charity cases.” In fact, in Caplan’s argument immigrants will bring their nations “trillions of dollars of extra wealth creation, year after year.” This is the promise of the Second Coming for an atheistic and materialistic age.

Taking his cue from Steve Cohen, Caplan published his own manifesto on “Open Borders Day, March 16th 2015.” The manifesto is signed disproportionately by Jewish and non-White intellectuals from colleges across the United States, but also including some in Canada and Europe. A particularly interesting aspect of the manifesto is that it avoids the economic ploys raised by Caplan in his TIME article, and instead returns to the empty moralizing of Steve Cohen’s 2003 effort. Caplan argues that “freedom of movement is a basic liberty that governments should respect and protect unless justified by extenuating circumstances. This extends to movement across international boundaries.”

Caplan continues that “border controls predominantly restrict the movement of people who bear no ill intentions. Most of the people legally barred from moving across international borders today are fleeing persecution or poverty, desire a better job or home, or simply want to see the city lights.”

They simply want to see the city lights? Caplan and his supporters demand that “international borders should be open for all to cross, in both directions.” This refrain about traffic moving in “both directions,” is one of the more insidious and disingenuous ploys of the open borders advocates. Indeed, it is at the core of the effort to convince Whites that by abandoning their borders they too will be “set free.” But how long will be the line be for flights from New Hampshire to Mogadishu? From Copenhagen to Damascus? In the nightmarish realization of the dreams of Cohen, Caplan, and their swelling numbers of colleagues, there will be no traffic in “both directions.” There will be an almighty surge from all dark corners of the earth to those parts of it where the last dim light of civilization yet glows.


In Sun Tzu’s Art of War it is noted that it is a better offensive tactic to take your opponent’s forces whole rather than in piecemeal fashion. National borders, national identities, and the piecemeal nature of the White socio-political existence are obstacles to globalists of all descriptions seeking our defeat. Much better for them that we be united in economic bond-houses like the European Union, where diktats and immigration directives can be handed down to the great mass, leaving no stone unturned, no patch of land untouched. Much better for them that our borders be obliterated, absorbing us forever into the great chaos of dark humanity. But, as Sun Tzu said, knowing your enemy can be a first step to successful defense. And perhaps now we have a slightly clearer appreciation of his tactics and his methods.

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