An Interview with Roy Tov, Author of The Cross of Bethlehem
December 1, 2010
On December 1, 2003, I was shot at by an Israeli sniper. Subsequently, I was recognized as a refugee by a sovereign country.
- Roy Tov, "On Being a Refugee"
A Cup of Coffee with Roy Tov
Christopher Bollyn Interviews the Author of The Cross of Bethlehem
Americans are generally quite naïve about Israel and how the Zionist state really functions. The general ignorance about Israel is primarily due to the fact that most people are woefully misinformed about the Middle East, having grown up consuming biased news and entertainment products provided by Hollywood and the Zionist-controlled media. This has resulted in a very significant part of the American population suffering from an extremely distorted point-of-view. Prior to 9/11 this may not have been a matter of great concern, but with the U.S. involved in at least two long-term wars in the Middle East and hundreds of thousands of people being called to serve, Americans can no longer afford to be blissfully ignorant about the outlaw state of Israel and its international criminal network that are at the root of the conflict in the region.
The Cross of Bethlehem is a remarkable book about Israel, written by an intelligent Israeli dissident who converted to Christianity and writes under the name Ro’i (Roy) Tov. Having had a career at Israel’s highest scientific institution and having served in top-secret military units provided Tov with unique insights. These experiences, however, made Tov a marked man when he tried to leave Israel and write a critical book about the Zionist state. When Tov refused to return to Israel, the Mossad targeted him for assassination.
I read The Cross of Bethlehem with great interest because it is a unique book that reveals the hidden truth about Israel. I conducted the following interview with the author at the end of November 2010. Both Roy Tov and I would suggest that you ask your public library to get a copy.
Christopher Bollyn: I would like to ask about your family’s migration to Israel. Was your family a Zionist family to start with? Did you agree with your family’s decision to move to Israel or would you have preferred to stay in Argentina?
Roy Tov: My grandparents migrated from Germany and Poland to South America early in the 20th Century. Some of their sons migrated to Israel and my parents decided to join them later on. The first time I heard of Zionism was in the meetings at the embassy before the trip; I was very unhappy mainly due to the certainty that I was being moved into a war zone. No kid can understand that; yet, I was not asked.
Bollyn: At what age did you decide that you were interested in the teachings of Jesus Christ? Did you see any conflict in what you were taught on the kibbutz and what Jesus Christ says? Were you able to talk openly about the teachings of Jesus with your friends or did you feel the need to keep your beliefs private? Did your beliefs in Jesus Christ make you a heretic in the eyes of secular Israelis who are not religiously bound by the teachings of the rabbis?
Roy Tov: I would like to begin with an anecdote. I currently live in Bolivia, a country that gave me political refuge. People here are notoriously unaware of time; once I was forced to wait three hours for a scheduled meeting and the other side didn’t even apologize for the delay. Yet, whenever I give a public speech, people want to know the exact second I converted to Christianity. It doesn’t work in such a way. It’s a process and it takes time. In The Cross of Bethlehem I describe some of the relevant early experiences: a bishop in Rome; a fisherman by the sea. There were others on which I cannot comment since my Teachers can still be identified.
Yet, there is an important point I emphasized in The Cross of Bethlehem. First, I met the negative sides of Judaism. Knowing evil, I began searching for goodness and Christ was there.
Antonio Ciseri, 1871
From early on I was aware of what my fate would be if found. I describe how, while at the university, I ventured a little joke (Since my Israeli ID number on my internal passport began with 111, I told a friend and informant of the Shin Bet that I had the Mark of the Trinity on me) and almost paid dearly for that. Eventually the fact was discovered and I paid dearly; I am a refugee now.
A point which is difficult for outsiders to understand is that even the lives of secular Jews in Israel are regulated by Pharisaic rabbis. Israel lacks a constitution or proper secular legislation.
Bollyn: The Cross of Bethlehem is a remarkable book because it is a critical view of Israel and Israeli society as seen by a very intelligent insider. Reading the book, one gets the impression that you have been pursued, watched, and targeted for assassination by the Mossad simply because you were planning to write a book about your life and experiences in Israel. Is this how you see it? If so, what does this say about the state of Israel and the notion of “freedom of speech” for Israelis?
Roy Tov: Thank you. As always, reality is complex. My persecution is not only due to The Cross of Bethlehem. In the book I describe how I was invited by Dow Chemical to their European headquarters and asked to transfer classified American missile technology developed by Dow to Israel. Back in Israel I contacted Uzi Eilam – back then Head of Mashmam (Israel Ministry of Defense’s Center for Control of Special Operations) – and asked to be kept out of it. The result was the Ministry of Defense discovered that I was a Christian who had had access to sensitive information for years. I was punished for that in a variety of ways until 2002 when unexpectedly I was sent to Bethlehem as part of the Defensive Shield Operation; my loyalty was being checked. This was my first serious test as a Christian (or to be more exact anything prior to this paled in comparison) and I passed it superbly. The Cross of Bethlehem is rich on the details, so I’ll just comment here that most IDF officers – my peers – would regard my actions as treasonous despite my not having violated any law. Adding insult to injury, I decided to publish the book.
Human rights are not properly defended in Israel because the country lacks a constitution. Sadly, ensuring human rights and the creation of a Palestinian state were conditions imposed by the UN on Israel’s sovereignty (when it was created). Since it failed in both, it has lost it. We are talking about an illegitimate state, which on 16 October 2009 was defined by the Human Rights Council of the UN as a terror organization (see Article 1690 of the Goldstone Report and others).
Bollyn: You write that Israel’s Mossad and Shin Bet keep tabs on Israelis in the same way that East German’s secret police (Stasi) or the KGB of the Soviet Union spied on their fellow citizens. Are the Israeli secret services at the top of the pecking order? Who are they really serving? Do they take orders from the Rothschilds, the banking family who played a leading role in organizing and financing the creation of the state of Israel?
Roy Tov: It’s not only my writings that say this. The Shin Bet itself has openly said that. Following Rabin’s assassination, the Shin Bet agitator Avishai Raviv appeared in an Israeli court. There we learned about “Haagaf Hayehudi” (The Jewish Department of the Shin Bet) and about Avishai pushing Yigal Amir into committing the hideous murder in the name of hatred, war, and war bankers. These are facts: Israel is a police state run by organizations keeping a network of “politruks.”
If walking in downtown Tel Aviv – a city I like very much in its design despite all my troubled history there – you’ll find that Rothschild Boulevard is one of the most beautiful spots in town. Yet, throwing all the blame on one small family would be quite naïve. The people appearing in The Cross of Bethlehem as the “Isaacsons” are very rich and influential – “Rahamim” was a personal friend of Yitzhak Rabin – yet very few people know them. The super-rich stay in the shadows for their own safety.
The design of general goals is defined by a small cabal, call it the Elders of Zion if you like, which includes people in Israel and outside it. Yet, if one of the cabal members changes his mind in a way perceived as dangerous by the others – see Rabin’s case – he’s dispensable. The implementation is left to many servant organizations, depending on their nature. Some of them are criminal in nature – like the Mossad – others are financial, commercial, political, scientific, and so on. Back to the beginning of this question, The Cross of Bethlehem exposes the methods used by these entities from the operational point of view, and as such is quite unique. Spycatcher and A CIA Diary are similar, but they are presented from the point-of-view of the criminal organization (MI5 and CIA are both clearly presented as violators of human rights).
Bollyn: Your analysis in The Cross of Bethlehem of the power structure of the Pharisees and how the Talmudic rabbis have stolen the Bible from the people is brilliant. You wrote:
Along with foreign doctrines brought from Babylon, the Pharisees adopted the old Hindu symbol for spiritual strength as their own. To ingratiate it in the eyes of the people they called it the Star of David, or in direct translation from Hebrew, “David’s Shield.” To justify their foreign beliefs, they claimed they were given orally to Moses in Sinai, a false claim which is not mentioned in the Bible. Without understanding this oral tradition, they asserted, you could not interpret the Bible correctly. Thus the Pharisees stole the Bible from the people. Jesus tried to explain that the correct interpretation is the one arising from faith and love, not the monstrous apparatus based on personal convenience created by the rabbis. He said people were equal many years before the false socialist doctrines made a joke of that idea.
Further on, you say that Christianity poses a singular threat to the power structure of the modern-day Pharisees:
I realized that Christianity poses a singular threat to Jewish leadership. Universally, religion deals with salvation or redemption of the human soul. Judaism speaks about an ethnic salvation, provided the group fulfils the 613 Mosaic Laws written in the Pentateuch, the Bible’s first five books. The laws’ fulfillment is enforced and monitored by a dedicated group of priests. In essence, the individual’s good-standing depends on the priests’ judgment. As a result this is a powerful control tool over the general population. Since most of the population is not instructed on law, and moral values – which could serve as general guidelines – are not taught to them, they can be easily manipulated as per the priests’ political goals at any given moment.
Jesus broke up this line of reasoning. He taught about personal redemption based on faith and love, of having direct access to God through our prayers and thus of being independent from priests. He preached for a better society, the Kingdom of God, a society based on justice and love. Such a society can exist within the framework of a modern state, but it would lead to the loss of power by the few men thriving under Pharisaic modeled societies.
The Israeli occupation of Palestine is the core problem in the Middle East and the Pharisaic state of Israel is the cause of that unresolved Gordian knot in the Holy Land. In these lines and pages you put your finger directly on the crux of the problem: Evil men, who claim to be the authority of Mosaic Law, have stolen the Bible from the Jewish people and control them by keeping them in a rabbinical “Auschwitz of the mind.”
While you have managed to escape from the grip of the Pharisees, there are millions of other Jews and Israelis still being held in their rabbinical prison. In your opinion, is Yeshua (the Aramaic/Hebrew name for Jesus, which means salvation) the only true way to liberate the Jewish people from the false dogma of the Pharisees that holds them captive?
Hieronymus Bosch, 1480
Roy Tov: I try hard to keep distance from the fake teachings and bad culture of my people; yet, just once let me answer your question with another one: If beyond Yeshua there were another answer to their false dogma, don’t you think that in the more than 2700 years that have passed since Isaiah (“Ysha’ayahu” in Hebrew means roughly “God’s Salvation”) denounced polytheistic practices and idolatry, and specifically prophesized Yeshua and the New Covenant, they would have found it? Communism is not an answer. Zionism is not an answer. Kibbutzim are not an answer. The Israeli Defense Force (IDF) and their nuclear weapons are not an answer. Surveillance, assassination, and crippling of political opponents are not an answer. The only answer is Love and Faith; Jesus brought us that.
Bollyn: In The Cross of Bethlehem you wrote about how your Bible studies in the kibbutz school avoided the parts of Scripture that did not fit with the Israeli worldview: “Even in my quasi-Communist high school – which claimed to be secular – we skipped Chapter 53 of the Book of Isaiah, which contains the clearest and exact allusion to Jesus, His deeds, and the New Covenant in the Old Testament.”
Avoiding Scripture, testimony, and evidence that does not fit one’s point of view is a clear indication of intellectual dishonesty. The avoidance of inconvenient facts about Israel is a common practice in the Western media. While dissidents from countries like China and Burma are front-page news in the West and honored with Nobel prizes, dissidents from Israel, such as Mordechai Vanunu and you, are completely ignored. Why is that?
Your criticism of Israel’s discriminatory policies and lack of democratic values is fair and relevant, and certainly deserves to be heard. Mordechai Vanunu’s revelations about Israel’s nuclear weapons program are of immense historical importance, yet the Western media pretends that Israeli dissidents like you and Vanunu don’t even exist. What does this say about the pro-Israel bias of the Western media and the public’s cultivated ignorance of Zionism and Israeli reality?
Roy Tov: A few years ago I was awarded formal political asylum under the 1951 Geneva Convention on Refugees, following an unsuccessful assassination attempt on me by Israel. I had a place in a church and was preaching openly. I couldn’t see how I would publish The Cross of Bethlehem; yet I kept working on the manuscript. Now it is very readable, and considering that English is not my native language and that I never studied it properly, achieving this was quite a feat. I had no illusions of reaching the New York Times headlines, yet I was experiencing a freedom of speech unparallel to anything an Israeli citizen could possibly expect. Many people around me spoke of my charisma; Israel panicked.
In July 2009 I was cowardly and brutally attacked and nearly strangled to death by Israeli agents (in cooperation with locals). Almost everything was stolen (though a hidden copy of The Cross of Bethlehem manuscript survived) – including my travel documents. Showing their grandeur, the assailants inflicted irreversible damage to my throat. I am now able only to whisper for short periods of time and will probably soon lose my ability to speak at all.
Rabin spoke about the “indefatigable conspirator,” referring to Shimon Peres, and he spoke similarly about the Shin Bet and their tendency to “cook data.” He paid dearly for that, but he was absolutely right. The Zionist-Pharisaic cabal will stop at nothing in order to go on with their Business of War. Achieving this requires controlling the mainstream media; this is achieved in a variety of ways - my story illuminates some of these.
Bollyn: In your epilogue, you concluded: “Maybe the criminal society that hunts me will cease to exist. Perhaps it will transform itself into a decent civilization. Either way, it will not continue to exist under its current laws. The record of history bears witness that criminal regimes do not remain in power forever.”
At this point, what are the chances that Israel will transform itself into a decent civilization and what are the chances that the Zionist state will cease to exist? Which outcome seems more likely to you? Do you think there is a chance for a democratic state in Palestine in which Jews, Muslims, and Christians of all ethnic groups can live together?
Roy Tov: I accept the recent definition of the State of Israel as a terror-inflicting entity by the United Nations Human Rights Council. Moreover, the State of Israel exists in clear violation of the conditions imposed on its sovereignty by the UN, the body that brought that state into being. These violations cross frontiers. A clear case was the assassination attempt of Khaled Mashal, when Israel was forced to recognize its crime and supply the antidote. Benjamin Netanyahu signed the order to commit the crime and at that moment became the first well identified bio-terrorist.
Under such conditions we can ask only for the Repentance of Israel. I do not mean only the appearance of an Israeli representative at midnight in a barely illuminated alley who would ask forgiveness from the unelected representative of the millions of victims. That’s not good enough. Israel must fully indemnify for its crimes inside and outside its borders. Moreover, it must dismantle the terror organizations that enabled the commitment of these crimes, beginning with its main five intelligence agencies. Its agents must be brought to an international court; they bear personal responsibility for their crimes. It must stop seeing ethnic Jews across the world as the property of the Zionist-Pharisaic cabal and automatic informants of its agencies. It must begin treating all humans as equal creations of God.
Let me end with the following question: with all its arrogance of power and self-righteousness, can the State of Israel bring back to life even one of its victims?
Christ of Saint John of the Cross
Salvador Dalí, 1951