Thursday, January 3, 2008


Demophrenia: A Psychological Analysis of Israel’s Malaise*

Prof. Paul Eidelberg
Foundation for Constitutional Democracy**

From its inception in 1948, the government of Israel, regardless of which party or coalition was at the helm, has been afflicted by a mental disorder I call "demophrenia."

Demophrenia is a deeply rooted malady of national and even of world-historical significance. It involves a compulsive application of democratic principles to moral problems and ideological conflicts which are impervious to, and even intensified by, those principles—especially the principle of equality.

Demophrenia is most advanced in Israel because its government—despite its oligarchic structure—is animated by a democratic mentality in conflict with the moral and territorial imperatives of Zionism, and also ineffectual against the anti-democratic mentality of Israel's Arab inhabitants and neighbors.

The pathological nature of demophrenia will be better understood by reviewing certain characteristics of schizophrenia.

Some schizophrenics, like those afflicted by demophrenia, may be able to deal efficiently with various parts of reality. In principle, however, schizophrenics suffer from a lack of harmony between the three psychological elements that form the personality, namely, the intellect, the emotions, and the will.

Confronted by hostile or discordant aspects of reality, schizophrenics exhibit escapism, mental decrepitude, and emotional apathy or impotence. Although demophrenia exhibits all these characteristics, the disease is far more complex and profound, and more difficult to recognize, if only because it involves the dominant mentality of our age.

Many secular, and not a few religious, Jews cannot cope with Arab animosity. Otherwise they would not advocate the logically suicidal and escapist policy of "territory for peace." The policy is logically suicidal because it requires Israel to relinquish land whenever the Arabs threaten war. Underlying the escapism of this policy reflects a lack of Judaic self-confidence. This escapism is rooted in Jewish assimilation to the secular and egalitarian mentality of our age.

In contrast, Islamic mentality is not only religious, but its most humble adherents are incredibly proud. Referring to the Arabs of pre-state period, Professor Gil Carl AlRoy saw that the illiterate Muslim, living in squalor and filth, looked upon the Jew with his water toilets, soap, Beethoven and Bach, and actually felt naturally superior to the Jew as the English aristocrats would in olden days have felt toward Cockneys.

Ironically, many secular Zionists pitied the Arabs. Because Jews are the perennial victims of injustice, how could they not sympathize with the demands of Arabs who purvey themselves as victims of injustice? Demophrenics tend to identify with their enemies and feel compelled to yield to their demands even when, by so doing, they jeopardize their own interests.

Of course, their enemies couch their demands in democratic terms—as "rights" or as "legitimate rights"—knowing that such language disarms the political and intellectuals leaders of pluralistic, that is, of demophrenic regimes. Demophrenic personalities never challenge the alleged rights of their enemies. Instead, they try to "understand" their enemies, to "see things from their point of view."

This seemingly empathic, but really condescending, attitude incites their enemies to even greater hatred, especially if the hatred is rooted in a religious ideology. Arab hatred of Jews permeated by contempt. Let me explain.

A demophrenic Jew is imbued with the moral egalitarianism and cultural pluralism inherent in this democratic era. Wishing to live in peace with others, the demophrenic urges on Muslims an attitude of tolerance, of mutual respect and equality. This demophrenic attitude, however, tacitly denies the validity of any religious ideology that claims to possess the absolute truth, and whose followers see no logical reason why they should tolerate error or live in peace and equality with “infidels.”

Hated by their enemies, Israel’s demophrenic politicians and intellectuals begin to identify with their enemies. The moral egalitarianism of this democratic age deprives them of any rational basis for pride. In fact, moral equivalency diminishes their mental capacity to hate their enemies on the one hand, and to love their own people on the other—at least to the extent of wreaking vengeance on Arabs who have assaulted their people.

Lacking pride, the hatred directed at them by their enemies imbues Jews with feelings of guilt. Feeling of guilt prevents them from upholding their own rights or from making any demands on their enemies. They prefer to appease their enemies either by meekness or by acts of kindness.

Animated, or so they think, by reason, demophrenics cannot understand why reason, graced by benevolence, fails to overcome the malice and violence of their enemies. Obviously this kind of mentality emasculates them. Their very instinct of self-preservation is bungled, in consequence of which they hesitate to use force, let alone lethal force, to quell the lethal violence of their enemies.

Demophrenic governments or personalities—especially if their people have long suffered persecution—have a fear-driven desire to be loved and accepted, and nothing so much disturbs them as hate-filled rejection. Even when their assailants falsify reality and defame them, they refrain from speaking the truth and exposing their slanderers as wicked liars. Like blind-deaf-mutes, they see no evil, hear no evil, and speak no evil.

Because Israel's demophrenic government cannot face the truth, it is constantly the victim of lies. Yearning for the acceptance and approval of the nations, it is repeatedly condemned by the United Nations.

The lack of pride manifested by the government of Israel must be juxtaposed to the well-known overweening pride of Muslims who cannot abide equality with infidels, and must lord it over them whenever possible. Hence, for Israel's government to think that its own self-effacement will humble Arab pride betrays not an error in judgment—which experience might correct—but a syndrome. It is not a Jewish a syndrome but democratic or equivalency syndrome, one that renders it impossible to dissolve the Arab-Israel conflict.

It needs to be emphasized that Israel's political leaders are psychologically incapable of transcending, at least in action, the egalitarian horizon of secular democracy. They are aware of Islamic hatred, but they find it incomprehensible. Lacking religious faith themselves, these secularists have no conception of what belief in Allah demands of the faithful.

One of those demands is murderous hatred of the Jew. But inasmuch as those afflicted by demophrenia are incapable of religious hatred, they continue to think that Arab hatred can be appeased, despite all evidence to the contrary.

Unfortunately, Israel has for many years been plagued with governments consisting of demophrenic personalities. These people, like schizophrenics, are not amenable to reason if only because their mentality is strait-jacketed by the limitations of a democratic mode of thought, the dominant mode of the age.

So long as Israel is ruled by demophrenic personalities—and they dominate not only the government but also various media of education—precious Jewish blood will be shed in Eretz Yisrael.


*Based on my book Demophrenia: Israel and the Malaise of Democracy (1994). To purchase the book, send $24 or 80 shekels payable to the Foundation for Constitutional Democracy, POB 23702, Jerusalem 91236 Israel. For information on related publications, send an email to

**To help the Foundation’s important educational work in Israel and abroad, please make a tax deductible contribution to the Foundation at the above address.


for further illumination of the puzzle of Israel's lame defense against the jihad:

Olmert's National Policy of Guilt

Please click on the above and then on the links in that post to further understanding of why Israel has sunk from a power feared by the Arab Moslems to acting as their punching bag.


See if you can get to any of the posts linked in this post from the now-censored Islamic Danger blog:

or Bush and his Saudi Pals put one over on the bowed-down, shuffling Ghetto-Jew Ehud Olmert and his retinue

"United States: State Sponsor of Judeophobia" by Pamela Geller

A terrible line was crossed at Annapolis.
[we were referred to the foregoing site by ]

For the prime source of the stench, we must look to Sick of the "Sowdis?" So are we! [Click for this link here. This post is now available also at the Islamic Danger to Americans blog--as]

Background for this post:

Some of these posts have migrated to as-yet uncensored venues. The rest will be transferred to accessible blogs as soon as this can be accomplished. Please bear with me in the meantime. Leslie White.

Emet m'Tsiyon: The Arab Invaders Practiced Population Transfer

Olmert's National Policy of Guilt
Also, see

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