Nothing gets Mosaic practitioners of the PC faith more in a tizzy than the use of the epithet “self hating Jew.” They go on and on about how the opposite is true, that they are in fact super Jews whose embrace of the latest cause-du-jour is really a manifestation of tikkun olam, clearly the most important value in all of Judaism. But just as there no doubt somewhere exists an African American who loves watermelon, or an unscrupulous gypsy Roma, or an Asian who can’t drive, or a Muslim who really does want to murder all the infidels, surely there must be a Jew somewhere who really is self loathing?

Well the answer to that question, finally, is a resounding YES! Well yes if you are a follower of patrilineal descent in the transmission of the Jewish faith. Allow me to explain.

Remember Azzam the American? He recently appeared in an Al Quaeda video with #2 henchman Ayman al-Zawahiri. In the past he’s made statements like “Allah willing, the streets of America will run red with blood, matching drop for drop the blood of America’s victims.” It’s no surprise that “Azzam” is on the FBI’s most wanted list.

What is surprising is that Azzam the American aka Adam Gadahn was born Adam Pearlman to a Jewish musician father, as reported by today’s New York Sun:

Adam Pearlman’s religious journey began when his family converted to Christianity and took the last name Gadahn. He first came in contact with Islam when his father slaughtered goats and sold the meat to Muslim halal markets. As a pimply, head-banging teenager, Adam embraced Islam at an Orange County mosque when he was just 17… Until this summer, an essay by “Adam Pearlman” was posted on the University of Southern California’s Muslim Student Association compendium of Muslim texts; it has been quoted widely in the press. Titled “Becoming Muslim,” it states: “As I began reading English translations of the Qur’an, I became more and more convinced of the truth and authenticity of Allah’s teachings. … Having been around Muslims in my formative years, I knew well that they were not the bloodthirsty, barbaric terrorists that the news media and the televangelists paint them to be.”

So can I please call this guy a self-hating Jew? Or a self-hating quasi-Jew? Please??

Another funny twist to this whole Adam Pearlman / Ghanan thing is that his brother is a video blogger who talks about his ex-girlfriend and his brother the traitor. Dig his myspace emo haircut. Rock on!

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About the author


Founder and Publisher of Jewlicious, David Abitbol lives in Jerusalem with his wife, newborn daughter and toddler son. Blogging as "ck" he's been blocked on twitter by the right and the left, so he's doing something right.


  • That would make “Azzam” a self-hating Jew who is hated by most of humanity, including most Muslims. Dang it, does even his mama love him? The FBI may want his behind, but nobody else does.

  • Everyone, mark ck’s words! He lends credence to patrilineal descent in defining one’s Jewish status in his bid to label this dude a self-hating Jew! Could this be one of those famous Talmudic exceptions? :-p

    Oh, and I get all those stereotypes except the African American man eating watermelon. What gives?

  • Wait, was his mother Jewish? Given all the time spent on this site fighting back and forth about whether or not you would consider someone who underwent a conservative convesrion a Jew, it woudl be a might hypocritical to start bending the rules here so you can get a cheap laugh 🙂

  • NOT Really a Selfhating Jew cause his mother isnt Jewish, therefore he’s not a Jew. He’s just HATES JEWS.

  • Gevalt! This poor dude met some Muslims in his formative years, they were the only consistent people he had ever seen, so naturally he wanted in. And they had wimmins. They had a real handle on their wimmins. Who could resist? Nobody.

  • That’s not approval. It’s not understanding either.

    A cautionary spectacle. Yuck.

  • And they had wimmins. They had a real handle on their wimmins. Who could resist? Nobody.


  • So true. I will gevalt about other things more interesting.

    As for the wimmins, well, I just meant women. It’s my keyboard’s fault.

  • Have we determined what a “self-hating Jew” really is? Is it someone who hates Jews and is Jewish? Who hates Judaism and is Jewish? Who hates herself for being Jewish?

    You know who I would call a self-hating Jew? Ryan Gosling’s character in The Believer. A damn sexy one, at that. But he definitely showed signs of self-hatred.

    I don’t know if someone who considers him/herself of another religion can still be called a self-hating Jew. Azzam’s just a crazy fanatic.

    Oh, was that a rhetorical question?

    Sucks for the family. But I suppose one should be wary before slaughtering animals in front of impressionable young yuppie children. ew. Haven’t seen anything like that on Laguna Beach yet.

  • Well Ariela, Karl Marx was baptized at birth and both his parents were Jews who converted to christianity. Despite this he had the stain of perceived Jewishness and so he wrote some awfully anti-semitic stuff, much harsher than anything his contemporaries had written, in order to overcompensate for his Jewish roots, to show that he had truly rid himself of any Jewish identity. the same probably applies to Azzam. He wants so badly to rid himself of his loathsome jewish identity, that he over does it and becomes a shill for Al Qaeda. Either that or he’s really a Jewish spy! Hear that Osama? A Jewish spy!! Right under your nose! Ha ha ha ha.

    OK, I digressed there. But you get my point, no? Jewish self hatred can exist even within one who isn’t technically Jewish by current traditional standards.

  • If this guy is a self-hating Jew, than so was Casper Weinberger.

  • It’s funny that the only people in the world who think Adrian Brody and Ben Stiller aren’t Jewish is us Jews. Well, not me. Jew is in the soul baby!

  • Eric wrote: Jew is in the soul baby!

    Oy, Eric. How ironic. Therein lies the crux of the dilemma by which Halakhic, normative Judaism determines who is a Jew, and who isn’t…

  • Oyster, I am well aware of dilemma but it doesn’t bother me anymore. I’m fully supportive of patrilineal descent. Hey, if some 13th century rabbinical court could change the rules, why can’t I? If not me, who? If not now, when? LOL!

    There may come a day in our future again, when we’ll take any Jews that we can find. I hope that day never comes and I think this internal conflict is actually a positive sign of Judaism’s healthy existence.

  • Eric wrote: Hey, if some 13th century rabbinical court could change the rules

    Are you referring to the Ashkenazic prohibition on polygamy, or the restriction of poultry mixed with dairy? Because most Modern Critical Analysis studies of matrilineal descent trace it back to at least the time of Yavneh, if not the traditional view of it going back to Mt. Sinai and the giving of the Law.

  • Several thoughts here, one of which was cited:

    1.) Man, that’s some Deep cover for a spy!

    2.) How come every teenage shmo like Johnny Walker Lindh and now this assclown can traipse about in SW Aisa and get recruited into the Taliban/Al Queda and we’ve yet to get one of our intell agents even close to these enemies?

    3.) There’s a prohibition on polygamy? When the hell did this happen? Did they put out a memo on it?

    4.) Agreed on Karl Marx. The prototype. Still they called him a Jew too.

    5.) Emo’s Jewish, right? I’m so confused…

    Cheers, ‘VJ’

  • Oyster, sorry I don’t think I have done enough research yet to offer up a good debate but I have been following this debate for several years and I don’t believe the case has ever been closed. I can only think of a family member in Israel who has been a devoted Jew her whole life, who found it difficult to say the least to deal with the fact that she wasn’t “technically Jewish” upon her Aliyah to Israel. This woman did more in keeping Judaism alive in the FSU while we have these Jewschool types of Jews actively fighting against our own people. I’m sure Orthodox Rabbis would consider her a gentile but if you ask her, she’s been a Jew her whole life and she isn’t going to let anyone convince her otherwise.

  • Eric:

    I’m not really commenting on the ‘debate’ about matrilineal versus other forms of determining Jewish tribal status. I’m just wondering where you got the 13th century ‘Beit Din’ reference from. Matrilineal descent in Jewish Law (Halakha) is discussed in the Oral Law / Talmud, which was redacted between 200 CE and 400 CE.

  • Actually I had read somewhere (been searching for it) that nowhere in the Torah was this law stated and that it was decried by the Rabbinical Court in the 13th Century in response to men converting to Judaism and having to undergo painful circumcisions. The law was enacted for the children of these men to be born Jewish without them having to undergo the circumcision. This I am reciting back from memory and obviously as you can tell, I have not been able to research this myself (yet, but you’ve got me all interested so I will further pursue).

    Furthermore, I think the interpretation of that portion of the Torah that you mentioned is also in question:

    I am interested in this subject, though am certainly not skilled enough to debate it. I also think I must have missed a million of these debates here at and don’t need to rehash it.

  • Hi Eric:

    That’s an interesting anecdote. If you can find a reference, that would be great.

    The link you provided does not call the cited passage of Torah into question. In fact, it is very clear about the interpretation of the passage. If you disagree, then that’s a different issue.

    Once again, I’m not interested in debating this ad nauseum. If I wanted to do that, I’d go to a Conservative yeshiva. :-p I’m just curious about your sources.

  • Before Sinai, it went be paternal to get tribal affiliation. After Sinai, it went by mother.

    This was even said by Moses when he heard the law from Hashem. But you guys probably dont even accept the Oral law and think Moses was up their playing pocket pool for 40 days and nights.

    Rashi says you get your nationalism from your father, and your Soul from your mother.

    reform and conservative rabbis have been misleading people forever and don’t even know Torah themselves.

    If you dont have a Jewish mother, you’re a goy. plain in simple.

  • At Sinai every Jew connected with Hashem and had their new Jewish soul placed in them. Therefore after that it went by the mother. You are born in your mothers womb, and that is where the soul enters.

    Is Elidabomb the only one on this Jewlicious site that did some torah learning?

    Eric, in response to the Goy Russian in Israel who thinks she’s a Jew. If I think I’m a monkey, eat like a monkey, talk like a monkey–am I a monkey? No. If she wants to get the Jewish soul she has to convert plain and simple. I know a ton of people who went through it once they knew what was True and what was False. It’s how bad she really wants it. She can be a righteous Gentile instead and just practice the 7 noahide laws.

  • CactusJack911 said: reform and conservative rabbis have been misleading people forever

    Wow, so Reform and Conservative Judaism have been around forever? Nice to know that you acknowledge that. :-p

  • Oyster? Did you finish 4th grade or do you have absolutely no sense of humor at all…or do you and I just can’t pick up the humor in that? sorry been a long day.

    Kaarites can be the closest thing to conservative and they died long ago. Kaarites did a lot more than conservative judaism though. Bottom line is only Torah and true Judaism lasts.

  • cactus in your case, you sound like a dick, you act like a dick, you’re a dick.

  • Jon C. Why do you always have to resort to name calling? Use that time wisely to learn. This way I won’t have to quote sources that just make your viewpoints completely wrong =). Shabbat Shalom buddy!

  • Cactus, Shabbot Shalom to you also my friend. I am not sure why i said that, it was mean and very juvenile. I don’t believe that the Talmud should be held in the same regards as the Torah and a lot of what you quote is from the Talmud. The Talmud should be studied and respected, but its not as divine as the Torah.

  • Jon C. My friend Moses wasn’t playing pocket pool up there for 40 days and 40 nights. He came down with the Oral law aka the Talmud. It is Torah. That was Judaism for 3800 years under reform and conservative didnt want to practice Judaism anymore. There’s proof that shows it’s the same. Aish runs a good program called Discovery. I think you should check it out. Or maybe go to a Chabad and talk to them about it. At the end of days you’ll see that the Oral Law is legit. Ever wonder why out of the blue the Oral Law went out the window? It’s cause Jews wanted to be more gentile. I’d love to your reply to this. I got another 2 hours before Shabbat comes in here.

  • Jon, look into everything. You sound where I was 5 years ago. Once you leave the biases and start learning–you see what Judaism really is. I’d love to see a keepa and tzitzit on ya pal!

  • Cactus, trust me I am very open minded. I love the idea of the Talmud. I am not educated enough yet, but if its divine as you say it is then I am down. That being said I can respect it, but Hashem gave us free will and I feel I can still be a good Jew without following the Torah as strictly as its commanded. I admit my faults and ask for repentence, but at the same time i am not trying to kid myself acting like i can be sinless.

  • Jon. No one is perfect. Just try to do as much as you can do. But what happened is reform and conservative created a new religion. That’s why in Israel they call it they “Protestization of Judaism” took place in America. Cause the religion was rewrote. Just do as much as you can do. All I am saying is there’s one Truth. We’re all Jews- some are Nonobservant, some are traditional, and some are observant. Stray strong brother! Learn about it. Have an email? I’ll shoot you some good stuff. so we can take this off the messageboard. I think we’re giving everyone a headache.

  • CactusJack911: What part of the Talmud instructs you to be rude and abraisive? Or are you just a troll?

  • OK, I digressed there. But you get my point, no? Jewish self hatred can exist even within one who isn’t technically Jewish by current traditional standards.
    No, Muffti is pretty sure that it can’t. He supposes ‘Jewish self hatred’ is ambiguous: one could have self-hatred of a jewish type or one could have ‘Jewish self’ hatred, where one hates ones jewishness. But Muffti isn’t very clear on how one could hate themselves for something they aren’t!

  • Oh Dr. Grand Muffti. Can’t one hate themselves for their own and others’ perception of their Jewishness – regardless of its actual existence? Kind of like how after a 3 day crystal meth binge you imagine there are all these bugs crawling on your skin and you scratch and scratch and scratch but they just won’t go away and you’re left with all these welts but there never were bugs there to begin with, it’s just the meth making you crazy? You know what I’m talking about, right?


  • I have a fun reading this blog. This explain why Jews are only .00000001% of world population but 30% of Nobel price winners. We argue about everything. Why matrimonial? Very simple. With the wars, pogroms etc. nobody really knew who the father was. Then they put religious coating on it. Now guys you can argue some more!