Russia is launching an investigation into whether Tsar Nicholas II and his family were killed by Jews as part of a ‘ritual murder’ in a move that has infuriated anti-Semitism campaigners.
Father Tikhon Shevkunov, the Orthodox bishop heading an investigatory panel, is among hardcore members of the church who claim the final Russian emperor was murdered in a Jewish ritual.
Tsar Nicholas was shot with his wife and five children by Communist Bolsheviks in 1918 after Vladimir Lenin came to power, and wild rumours about the circumstances surrounding his death have circulated ever since.
Mr Gorin said his group was shocked and angered by the statements from both the bishop and the Investigative Committee, which he said sounded like a revival of the century-old ‘anti-Semitic myth’ about the killing of the imperial family.
Discussing the Tsar’s murder, Father Shevkunov claimed the ‘Bolsheviks and their allies engaged in the most unexpected and diverse ritual symbolism’. . . .
He claimed that ‘quite a few people involved in the execution – in Moscow or Yekaterinburg – saw the killing of the deposed Russian emperor as a special ritual of revenge’.
And he alleged that Yakov Yurovsky, the organizer of the execution who was Jewish, later boasted about his ‘sacral historic mission.’
He put forward as evidence the claim that a bullet was assigned to eat royal but the majority of the bullets hit the tsar because ‘everybody wanted to be part of the regicide’ and ‘it was a special ritual for many’.
The ‘ritual’ claims were dismissed by the Prosecutor General’s Office in the 1990s but will be explored again as part of a new criminal investigation into the killing. . . .
‘They murdered the entire royal family, they killed the children in front of their father, they killed the mother in front of the children,’ said the politician, formerly the chief prosecutor in Crimea. This is a crime, a frightening ritual murder.’
‘Many people are afraid to talk about it – but everyone understands that it happened. It is evil.’
Top Bolshevik Yakov Sverdlov – who specifically ordered the killing of the last tsar – was also Jewish, say supporters of this theory.
Alexander Boroda, president of the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia, said the accusations – tantamount to a conspiracy theory – were plainly aimed at Jews, and risked stirring up hatred.
‘Accusing Jews of a ritual murder is one of the most ancient anti-Semitist slanders,’ he said.