Correctly Defining Modern Zionism

Correctly Defining Modern Zionism

Advertisements

In Their Own Words: Was Every israeli Prime Minister a Racist?

Source

gilad-sharon

THE RUSSOPHILE – Most nation states in our world today have dealt with their fair share of institutionalized racism and bigotry, and Israel is no exception. However when it comes to Israel, the volume of racism expressed by prominent political figures is both astounding and concerning.

A compilation of various racist and hateful quotes by Israeli Prime Ministers demonstrating the extent to which racism is entrenched as well as normalized in Israeli political culture.

DAVID BEN-GURION:

David Ben-Gurion was the first Prime Minister of the state of Israel, serving his first term between 1948 and 1953, he later served a second term from 1955 to 1963. Other than being a member of – what the British considered a terrorist organization at the time – the Haganah, David Ben-Gurion also notably presided over the ethnic cleansing of an estimated 750,000 Palestinians from their homeland.

David Ben-Gurion made his contempt for Palestinian human rights evident from his actions and therefore giving an example of his hatred for Palestinians would be nothing new. Instead it is crucial to understand that, from the very first Prime-Minister, the Israeli government viewed non-European Jews as “the other” and were very much racist.

On the 11th of June, 1962, David Ben-Gurion made the following statement at a meeting with the head of Israel’s teachers federation, Shalom Levin:
“The danger we face is that the great majority of those children whose parents did not receive an education for generations, will descend to the level of Arab children”. (Source: https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.653134)

The statement was addressing the question as to whether Israel should segregate the “Mizrahi” (Jews of Middle-Eastern origin or “oriental communities”) from the “Ashkenazi” (European Jewish) population.

This quote is crucial to understanding the attitude of the Prime Minister towards Jews, who were not of European descent.

This information comes from the Israeli Labour Party archives and was reported upon by the Israeli media outlet Haaretz on the 24th of April, 2015.

MOSHE SHARETT:

Moshe Sharett was Israel’s second and shortest serving Prime Minister (1953-1955), he was perceived by many as a liberal Zionist. Unfortunately for Israel romanticists, the fictional depiction of Moshe Sharett, as the ‘dove amongst hawks’, really came under fire when he revealed his racially charged descriptions of Palestinian refugees.

The following is an entry from Moshe Sharett’s diary on the 15th of November, 1953, where he refers to returning Palestinian refugees as infiltrators:

“In the last three years [Shani reported] 20,000 infiltrators settled in Israel, in addition to 30,000 who returned immediately after the war…. Only because these 20,000 have not been given permanent documents has the brake been put on the flow of infiltration directed toward settlement. To abolish the military government would mean to open the border areas to undisturbed infiltration and to increasing penetration toward the interior of the country. Even as things are, around 19,000 Arabs in Galilee are in possession of permanent permits to move freely around but only to the West and the South and not toward the North and the East…. it is true that the troublesome problem of the evacuees must be liquidated through a permanent resettlement”.

The entry was made addressing a report, which was submitted to the Israeli cabinet, that same day, by the chief Military governor of the Arab minority in Israel, ‘Colonel Yitzhak Shani’.

A leading right-wing Israeli scholar, Benny Morris, in his book Righteous Victims: A History of the Zionist-Arab Conflict quotes Sharett as saying; “We have forgotten that we have not come to an empty land to inherit it, but we have come to conquer a country from people inhabiting it”, confirming that the liberal Zionist, isn’t so representative of liberty when it comes to Palestinian human rights.

LEVI ESHKOL:

Levi Eshkol served as Israeli Prime Minister between 1963 and 1969. Eshkol oversaw 1967’s ‘six day war, in which Israel was responsible for attacking a defenseless Egypt and initiating a war in which they would illegally occupy the Golan Heights (From Syria), the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and the Sinai Peninsula.

On the 17th of November, 2017, Haaretz News reported upon declassified documents previously release by the Israeli government. The documents unearth some very revealing opinions and the way in which Levi Eshkol discussed Palestinians.

In December 1967, months after the war, Levi Eshkol discusses the Palestinians of Gaza, labelling them a “problem” that needs to be dealt with by making life so miserable for them that they would just leave, he even began discussing the “luxury” of another war which would deal with the “problem” Israel faces.

Eshkol goes on to state:
“I cannot imagine it – how we will organize life in this country when we have 1.4 million Arabs and we are 2.4 million, with 400,000 Arabs already in the country?”
(Source: https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.823075)

Evidently someone who declares Palestinians as a “problem” and “cannot imagine” living with them, actively working to violently expel them and/or force their departure, is no friend to any kind of peace in the region.

GOLDA MEIR:

Golda Meir became Prime Minister of Israel in 1969 and served until the year 1974. Golda Meir notably spoke of non-European Jews in a very demeaning way, perpetuating a very popular European Zionist stereo-type, that Jews from parts of the world other than Europe were essentially primitive.

Golda once said, whilst addressing the Zionist federation of Great Britain (in 1964):
“We in Israel need (Jewish) immigrants from countries with a high standard, because the future of our social structure is worrying us. We have immigrants from Morocco, Libya, Iran, Egypt and other countries with a 16th century level. Shall we be able to elevate these immigrants to a suitable level of civilization?”

Golda’s statement speaks for itself as to what she thought of non-European Jewry, hardly holding those from countries foreign to Europe at high esteem.

A notable concept pushed by the likes of Golda Meir, is the idea that Palestinians don’t exist, they are just Arabs and that Palestine never existed, an outright denial of history.

Golda Meir stated this idea loud and clear, on the 8th of March, 1969:
“It was not as if there was a Palestinian people in Palestine and we came and threw them out and took their country away from them. They did not exist.”
(Source: https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.654218)

Although the statement above is one that Golda Meir gave, she seemed to acknowledge the existence of Palestine when she wrote letters, during her time living under the British Mandate of Palestine.

YITZHAK RABIN:

Yitzhak Rabin was Israel’s Prime Minister twice, the first time between 1971 and 1977 and then the second time he served 1992-95. Yitzhak Rabin, for the most part, was seen through the eyes of the West as a liberal president, ultimately facing assassination at the hands of a fanatical right wing Israeli in 1995.

The Yitzhak Rabin known to the Palestinians however, was the bone-breaker, who oversaw mass murder and the brutalization of their people.

Something very kept quiet, is Yitzhak Rabin’s greeting of John Vorster in April, 1976. Yitzhak Rabin threw a Banquet for the Prime Minister of Apartheid South Africa, expressing that Israel and Apartheid South Africa both face “foreign-inspired instability and recklessness”, he then went on to praise Apartheid South Africa and hailed “the ideals shared by Israel and South Africa”.

MENACHEM BEGIN:

Menachem Begin was Israel’s Prime Minister between the years 1977 and 1983. Menachem Begin was once described by Albert Einstein as a terrorist, he and 25 other prominent Jews even wrote an open letter to the ‘New York Times’ in 1948. Begin was involved in the infamous bombing of the King David Hotel as well as many other terrorist attack, which claimed the lives of innocent men, women and children.

To point to the language, by which Menachem Begin used, to characterize his Palestine “enemy”, I would simply turn to Ammon Kapeliouk’s article from the New Statesman (June 25,1982). The article entitled ‘Begin and the Beasts’ sums up the dehumanizing way in which Menachem Begin referred to Palestinians, stating that they were “beasts walking on two legs” according to Kapeliouk’s account from the observation of his speech delivered to the Knesset.

YITZHAK SHAMIR:

Yitzhak Shamir was Prime Minister of Israel twice, first from 1983 to 1984 and then again from 1986 to 1992. Yitzhak Shamir was formerly a leader of the Lehi (Stern Gang), a terrorist group responsible for the Deir Yassin massacre of 1948, along with countless attacks on civilians before this.

Yitzhak Shamir said, prior to the Madrid peace talks (in 1991), “The Arabs are the same Arabs and the sea is the same sea”. With this statement he was insinuating that the Palestinians and Arab neighboring countries had never changed, asserting that engaging with them in a negotiable manner was not something he was so happy about.

Yitzhak Shamir also referred to Palestinian protesters in 1988 as “grasshoppers compared to us”, vowing to crush the demonstrations.
(Source: http://www.nytimes.com/…/shamir-promises-to-crush-rioters.h…)

SHIMON PERES:

Shimon Peres was elected twice as Prime Minister of Israel, serving the first time from 1984-1986, then again from 1995 until 1996. Peres also served the ninth President of the state of Israel (2007-2014) taking over from the convicted rapist Moshe Katzav.

Although dubbed as a champion of peace, Shimon Peres was in fact the man who led the initiative to create Israel’s first illegal settlements. He was also the founding father of Israel’s nuclear weapons program.

As Prime Minister Shimon Peres oversaw the massacre of Qana Massacre (South Lebanon, 1996) in which more than 100 civilians were killed, this occurred after Israel targeted and blew up a United Nations facility where roughly 800 people had gathered to take shelter.

Despite the often used, flowery language he chose to consult international media with, Shimon Peres actively enforced the strategic, zionist objective, of pacifying the Palestinian population through the means of strangling them financially.

During an interview, conducted by al-Jazeera, (published on the 30th of December, 2012) Peres blamed Palestinians for the hardships they endure, stating that; “They are self victimizing. They victimize themselves. They are a victim of they’re own mistakes, unnecessarily .” (Source: https://www.aljazeera.com/…/2012/12/2012122610132412135.html)

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU:

Benjamin Netanyahu was also Israel’s Prime Minister twice, beginning his first term in 1996 leaving office in 1999, he was then again elected in 2009 where he currently remains to this day.

Benjamin Netanyahu has a large track record of massacring Palestinians, most notably in Gaza during the large scale bombardments in 2012 and 2014. Netanyahu has on multiple occasions announced that settlements will never be reversed and constantly allows the approval of more settler units in the West Bank and Jerusalem.

A sample of things that commonly come from Benjamin Netanyahu’s mouth are as follows:

On March the seventeenth, 2015, in order to urge Israeli Jews to vote for him, Benjamin Netanyahu released a video on Facebook and other social media platforms, where he said; “The right-wing government is in danger. Arab voters are heading to the polling stations in droves.” (Source:https://www.facebook.com/Netanyahu/videos/10152778935532076/)

As reported by Haaretz News, Netanyahu on the ninth of February, 2016, visited the construction of a concrete wall that was being constructed on the border between Gaza and Israel. In his own words, the wall was necessary to “defend ourselves against the wild beasts”.
(Source: https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.702562)

Something else that is notable about Mr. Netanyahu is his views on African migrants. Haaretz News reported upon the comments made by the Prime Minister – on the 31st of August, 2017 – in which he referred to African Migrants as “infiltrators”. A portion of what Netanyahu said was; “We will return south Tel Aviv to the citizens of Israel, they are not refugees, but infiltrators looking for work,” he said. He added: “If needed, we will legislate an amendment to the law or change the agreements with the African countries, or both.”
(Source:https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.809999)

EHUD BARAK:

Ehud Barak was Israel’s Prime Minster between 1999 and 2001, he saw the beginning of the second Intifada during his time in office.

In April of 1973 Ehud Barak entered Beirut, dressed in drag (as a woman), in order to assassinate members of the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization), in killing innocent people.

On the 13th of June, 2002, Ehud Barak was interviewed by the New York Review of Books, during this interview he said the following:
“They [Arabs] are products of a culture in which to tell a lie… Creates no dissonance. They don’t suffer from the problem of telling lies that exists in Judeo-Christian culture”.

ARIEL SHARON:

Serving from 2001 until 2006 as Israeli Prime Minister leaving behind a lengthy trail of blood.

Ariel Sharon was most infamous for commanding the Qibya massacre,along with the massacres at Sabra and Shatila. Sharon also used his death squads to execute people in mass numbers in Gaza during the 50’s, especially upon the strips establishment.

Other than his willingness to massacre Palestinians and Arabs, it is also important to be aware of Ariel Sharon’s stance on stealing Palestinian land. Ariel Sharon said (as Foreign Minister) on Israeli radio in November of 1998; Everybody has to move, run and grab as many [Palestinian] hilltops as they can to enlarge the [Jewish] settlements because everything we take now will stay ours… Everything we don’t grab will go to them.
(Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-11576714)

EHUD OLMERT:

Prime Minister from 2006 until 2009, Ehud Olmert, inflicted devastating wars of aggression upon the civilian population of Lebanon (2006) and the Gaza strip (2008-2009), targeting and killing thousands of innocent people.

Like former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, Ehud Olmert also liked to compare Israel to Apartheid South Africa. Olmert spoke to Haaretz News following the Annapolis conference – which ended in an agreement to try and reach a Middle-East peace settlement by the end of 2008 – making the following comments:
“If the day comes when the two-state solution collapses, and we face a South African-style struggle for equal voting rights (also for the Palestinians in the territories), then, as soon as that happens, the State of Israel is finished”.
(Source: https://www.haaretz.com/…/olmert-to-haaretz-two-state-solut…)

In 2014 Ehud Olmert was sentenced to 27 months imprisonment, over charges on the grounds of corruption, he served 16 of those months before being released.

Racism and bigotry have been prominent features of Israeli politics since the states very inception. Israeli political leaders have repeatedly expressed dehumanization of Palestinians and Jews of non-European origin, across the political spectrum.

The Meaning of Little

June 06, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

little.jpg

By Gilad Atzmon

Patrick Little, whom the Jewish press refer to as a ‘white supremacist, a ‘neo Nazi’ and a ‘nut-job’ ran as a Republican candidate in the California Senate race yesterday.

Little insists that the Jews are over represented in American elite and government. He wants this to be fixed. He wants America to emancipate itself from The Lobby. He blames Jewish elite for, pretty much everything from 9-11 and every other global conflict involving America in recent decades.  He picks on the Jews because, as he resolutely says, they control the banks, Hollywood, the media, academia, political lobbying and so on.

Those within the MSM who tried to challenge Little met some resistance.  The young republican politician is far from being stupid or an ignoramus. He is familiar with the  details involved in the relevant discourse. He relentlessly and unapologetically refers to Kevin Macdonald, David Irving and David Duke. The mainstream journalists who attempted to ridicule Little found themselves on the defence, they didn’t know how to deal with his attitude to history, statistics and factuality in general. I guess that in an era dominated by tyranny of correctness, journalists and commentators have lost their ability to encounter in a proper ideological exchange. For a while we have been seeing texts removed from public libraries, bookshops and Amazon but the thirst for knowledge is, apparently, rooted in the human spirit – it is far from being defeated.

Little is repeatedly accused of being a ‘white supremacist’ and a ‘racist’ but his take on slavery, for instance, is certainly way more advanced and progressive than any of the social justice heroes around. Little offers to allocate the next ten years of ‘Israel aid’ to descendants of slavery. This he believes could wipe out the shame of slavery once and for all. Such an idea,  as far as I am concerned, borders genius. I would be interested to learn what is JVP or J-Street’s counter argument if they have one. More significantly, I wonder why is it Little rather than Black Lives Matter who presented such a revolutionary idea?

Little also denies the progressive claim that White Americans are over represented in American elite. He argues that it is Jews who are grossly over represented. Once this is fixed, Blacks, Hispanics and others may for the first time, in American history, be represented appropriately within government and the ruling elite.

Little also deconstructs the core of the progressive  terminological repertoire. ‘White Supremacy,’ according to Little is a nothing but a misleading Jewish projection. It is basically Jews attributing choseness to White goyim.

No one can deny that Little’s method to deal with the so called ‘Jewish problem’ is rather extreme. He wants Jews out of government, he was even quoted by Jewish press outlets suggesting to lock Jews in internment camps. On a first glimpse it indeed sounds radical but it is clearly not as radical as the measures implemented by the Jewish State against the indigenous people of Palestine. The Palestinians are discriminated by the Israeli law. Millions of them are locked behind walls and barbed wires. Once they approach the edge of their open air jail the Palestinian are met with Israeli snipers who do not hesitate much before they kill.

Last month Little scored 18% in a poll, a surprising second place behind elder Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein. Yesterday Little has managed to secure himself more than 54.000 votes. He is certainly not in the second place but he isn’t alone either.

A few days ahead of the California primaries we witnessed some signs of panic within the American Jewish universe to do with Little’s popularity. Israel Unwired wrote two days ago,  “The polls indicate that he (Little) is doing rather well and may indeed have a chance at reaching a 2nd round in the upcoming election.” Canary Mission, an ultra Zionist body that fights individuals and organizations that challenge Israeli policies sees Little as public enemy. According to the Canary Mission Little “is one of the most vile anti-Semites around today…This guy is a total nut-job and the kind of person that should not be allowed to represent anyone – let alone the entire State of California.”

I guess that Little is a ‘nut-job.’ In the world in which we live only suicidal nuts are brave enough to counter the strongest people on the land. The history of the Jews, however, reveals that some ‘nut-jobs’ have become powerful enough to cause a lot of harm to the tribe. I would, therefore advise American Jewish institutions to be slightly more attentive to the Littles out there. The frustration is growing and as Jewish history can tell, the transition into a tidal wave of hate is often sudden and unpredictable.

To support Gilad’s legal defense fund

Religious extremism is at the heart of US support for israel

Christian Zionist pastors Robert Jeffress and John Hagee led prayers at the opening ceremony of the US embassy to Israel in Jerusalem last month. (White House/YouTube)

One of the most important elements of the Israel lobby in the United States is right-wing Evangelical backing – or Christian Zionism.

The fanatically anti-Palestinian group Christians United For Israel, CUFI, claims to have more than 4 million members. It was founded in 2006 by a Texas mega-church televangelist, Pastor John Hagee. It now has smaller branches in the UK and Canada.

Hagee has a profitable line in supposedly prophetic books which promote extremist apocalyptic visions about the “end times.”

With attention-grabbing titles like Four Blood Moons, the books have a sci-fi or fantasy quality to them. Indeed, they are of course mostly fictional, even if their author would claim otherwise.

His upcoming book explicitly appeals to the lucrative fantasy blockbuster audience, titled as it is: Earth’s Last Empire: The Final Game of Thrones.

He also cashes in on the modern “prosperity gospel” trend among those Evangelicals who purport to show how Biblical prophecies and principles can lead to actual, literal wealth for his readers and congregants, in titles like “Decisions that Produce Wealth” and “The Power to Get Wealth.”

Hagee, then, is a modern-day snake oil salesman. As such, he is an appropriate fit for the state of Israel.

Hagee’s CUFI plays an important role in rallying Evangelical support for Israel in the US. It also claims that one of its aims is to fight anti-Semitism across the world.

Anti-Semitic creed

But in fact Hagee’s doctrine is one of the most fanatically anti-Semitic religious creeds in the world today.

Leading Palestinian intellectual Joseph Massad has made a convincing argument that Zionism’s origins actually lay in evangelical Protestant millenarianism rather than in any Jewish tradition.

At its heart is an anti-Semitic theology which aims to rid Europe of its Jewish communities and “gather” them in Palestine in anticipation of the End Times. There – so this eschatology has it – when the Messiah, Jesus, returns, the majority will convert to Christianity before the final judgement of God. The rest will be doomed to hell.

Christian Zionism sought to bring about this “return” to the “Land of Israel” in very practical terms. In reality, most Jews opposed Zionism as a fringe movement, and never sought to live in Palestine. European Jewish communities are just that – Europeans mostly descended from converts to Judaism.

The dangerous and racist mythology which drives groups like CUFI is therefore a useful tool of the Israel lobby in the eyes of cynical Israeli politicians and their Zionist supporters in the West.

Because despite its empty claims to be fighting anti-Semitism, CUFI’s theology is very much based in anti-Semitic ideas. Hagee himself infamously preached that Hitler was “a hunter” sent by God to drive Jews “back” to Palestine so that the divine plan to “return” the Jews to the Land of Israel could be played out.

Such demented ideology is a major driver of anti-Semitic hatred against Jews.

But it causes little problem for Israel and its supporters. While the re-emergence of Hagee’s Hitler sermon during the 2008 presidential race embarrassed John McCain into renouncing Hagee’s endorsement, the pastor continues to be courted and indulged by both Israeli and US politicians.

Racist logic

At the opening of the new US embassy in Jerusalem in May, Hagee gave the closing benediction, praying in front of a who’s-who of Israeli and American politicians.

The crowd included Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli opposition leader Isaac Herzog (of the so-called “Labor” party), Trump’s son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner, former US presidential candidate Ted Cruz, and former senator Joe Lieberman.

During his prayer, Hagee claimed that Jerusalem is “the eternal capital of the Jewish people”. This description – a common claim by such Zionist fanatics – is worth thinking about: while superficially philosemitic, it is, in effect, anti-Semitic.

As the Palestinian intellectual Omar Bargouhti – the co-founder of the BDS movement – puts it: neo-Nazis claim that Jews are sub-human while Zionists claim that Jews are super-human – both agree that Jews are, somehow, not human.

The philosemitism of Christian Zionism is actually a subtle form of anti-Semitism.

The obvious implication of Netanyahu’s baseless claim to be not just the prime minister of Israel but the “representative of the entire Jewish people” and of Hagee’s claim that Jerusalem is the “eternal” capital not just of Israel but of “the Jewish people” is that “the Jews” do not really belong to the many various countries in which they were actually born and brought up, but “really belong” – on some sort of mystical, metaphysical level – in Israel and Israel alone.

The long term aim is to drive Jews out of their ancestral homelands and into Palestine where they are compelled into the role of settlers in the apartheid colony of Israel. It is a racist, anti-Semitic logic.

This is something that Zionism has had a degree of success in achieving over the last 70 years. But the project has been a failure in that most Jews do not live in Israel, and show little interest in ever doing so – especially American Jews.

Fiery pits of hell

Another extremist American pastor to attend the embassy opening ceremony was Robert Jeffress. The Evangelical gave a prayer in front of the assembled politicians and embassy staff in which he described Jerusalem as “the city that you [God] named as the capital of Israel 3,000 years ago.”

He went into full-throated political-religion mode, gushing over Trump, and thanking God “every day that you have given us a president who boldly stands on the right side of history, but more importantly stands on the right side of you, oh God, when it comes to Israel.”

But Jeffress is also an extremist anti-Semite Christian Zionist.

As reported by the New York Times, he once said during an interview on a Christian TV channel that Jews, Muslims and Mormons are all going to hell.

“Islam is wrong. It is a heresy from the pit of hell,” he said. “Mormonism is wrong. It is a heresy from the pit of hell.” He continued: “Judaism – you can’t be saved being a Jew. You know who said that, by the way? The three greatest Jews in the New Testament: Peter, Paul and Jesus Christ. They all said Judaism won’t do it. It’s faith in Jesus Christ.”

In a 2008 sermon, he was more direct: “Not only do religions like Mormonism, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism – not only do they lead people away from the true God, they lead people to an eternity of separation from God in hell … Hell is going to be filled with good religious people who have rejected the truth of Christ.”

Israeli politicians like Netanyahu are no doubt aware of the hateful ideology of such allies. But as long as these allies are committed to political support for the state of Israel and defending its crimes, they do not care.

On the surface, this should make little sense. After all, in the fever dreams of Hagee and Jeffress, would Netanyahu – a Jew – not end up in the fiery pits of hell should he refuse to convert to faith in Jesus during the last days of judgement?

A settler-colonial movement

It makes more sense when you consider another historical fact: Zionism is not a movement for Jewish self defence, it is a movement for settler-colonialism.

If the global Zionist movement deems it useful to promote anti-Semitic conspiracy theories (as Israeli intelligence services admit to having deliberately done) and hateful, anti-Jewish Christian theologies, then so be it, goes their thinking.

After all, the goal of Israel is to bring Jews to the land of Palestine and turn them into settlers – human fodder that can be used to displace the indigenous people. Zionism has never had as one of its real goals the protection of Jewish communities outside of Israel.

If anything, the opposite is true. Israeli leaders constantly sensationalize threats to Jewish life in Europe, to encourage migration to Israel. Many Iraqi Jews claim that attacks on their community were actually a plot by Israeli agents to drive them out of the country and head for Israel. Before the rise of Zionism, and the foundation of the state of Israel in 1948, Jewish citizens of Iraq lived in relative prosperity and harmony with their fellow citizens of other religions.

Despite the warm words of Christian Zionists about Jews being “God’s chosen people,” there is no escaping the feeling that behind this veneer of philosemitism, there is a distinctly anti-Semitic core at work.

In the final analysis, the effect of Christian Zionism is anti-Semitic – it is bad for Jewish communities as well as bad for the indigenous people of Palestine

 

Al Mayadeen’s Nakba Special featuring Gilad Atzmon

May 15, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=reOKhDG6X78&t=3m28s

The English part starts around 3;29 min/sec.

In this interview with Al Mayadeen’s Zeinab Al Saffar  I elaborated on The Right of Return, the racism that is inherent to the Jewish State, the Jewish solidarity spin and the inevitable future – One Palestine from the river to the sea.

Six years ago 20 Palestinians called for my disavowal as I was touring America raising funds for The March to Jerusalem.  At the time some Palestinians were happy to serve their ‘solidarity meisters.’  But recent events  reveal how wrong they were. Their people are actually more determined than ever.

The Right of Return is the core of the Palestinian plight. It puts Gaza in context, it brings Israeli crude racism to light. It unites the Palestinians, it unites the rest of us behind them.

This interview was filmed in Maroun al Ras, Southern Lebanon

If they want to burn it, you want to read it!

cover bit small.jpg

In Case You Missed It: What Is Antisemitism?

By Michael Neumann

March 27, 2018 “Information Clearing House” – Every once in a while, some left-wing Jewish writer will take a deep breath, open up his (or her) great big heart, and tell us that criticism of Israel or Zionism is not antisemitism. Silently they congratulate themselves on their courage. With a little sigh, they suppress any twinge of concern that maybe the goyim–let alone the Arabs–can’t be trusted with this dangerous knowledge.

Sometimes it is gentile hangers-on, whose ethos if not their identity aspires to Jewishness, who take on this task. Not to be utterly risqué, they then hasten to remind us that antisemitism is nevertheless to be taken very seriously. That Israel, backed by a pronounced majority of Jews, happens to be waging a race war against the Palestinians is all the more reason we should be on our guard. Who knows? it might possibly stir up some resentment!

I take a different view. I think we should almost never take antisemitism seriously, and maybe we should have some fun with it. I think it is particularly unimportant to the Israel-Palestine conflict, except perhaps as a diversion from the real issues. I will argue for the truth of these claims; I also defend their propriety. I don’t think making them is on a par with pulling the wings off flies.

“Antisemitism”, properly and narrowly speaking, doesn’t mean hatred of semites; that is to confuse etymology with definition. It means hatred of Jews. But here, immediately, we come up against the venerable shell-game of Jewish identity: “Look! We’re a religion! No! a race! No! a cultural entity! Sorry–a religion!” When we tire of this game, we get suckered into another: “anti-Zionism is antisemitism! ” quickly alternates with: “Don’t confuse Zionism with Judaism! How dare you, you antisemite”

Well, let’s be good sports. Let’s try defining antisemitism as broadly as any supporter of Israel would ever want: antisemitism can be hatred of the Jewish race, or culture, or religion, or hatred of Zionism. Hatred, or dislike, or opposition, or slight unfriendliness.

But supporters of Israel won’t find this game as much fun as they expect. Inflating the meaning of ‘antisemitism’ to include anything politically damaging to Israel is a double-edged sword. It may be handy for smiting your enemies, but the problem is that definitional inflation, like any inflation, cheapens the currency. The more things get to count as antisemitic, the less awful antisemitism is going to sound. This happens because, while no one can stop you from inflating definitions, you still don’t control the facts. In particular, no definition of ‘antisemitism’ is going to eradicate the substantially pro-Palestinian version of the facts which I espouse, as do most people in Europe, a great many Israelis, and a growing number of North Americans.

What difference does that make? Suppose, for example, an Israeli rightist says that the settlements represent the pursuit of aspirations fundamental to the Jewish people, and to oppose the settlements is antisemitism. We might have to accept this claim; certainly it is difficult to refute. But we also cannot abandon the well-founded belief that the settlements strangle the Palestinian people and extinguish any hope of peace. So definitional acrobatics are all for nothing: we can only say, screw the fundamental aspirations of the Jewish people; the settlements are wrong. We must add that, since we are obliged to oppose the settlements, we are obliged to be antisemitic. Through definitional inflation, some form of ‘antisemitism’ has become morally obligatory.

It gets worse if anti-Zionism is labeled antisemitic, because the settlements, even if they do not represent fundamental aspirations of the Jewish people, are an entirely plausible extension of Zionism. To oppose them is indeed to be anti-Zionist, and therefore, by the stretched definition, antisemitic. The more antisemitism expands to include opposition to Israeli policies, the better it looks. Given the crimes to be laid at the feet of Zionism, there is another simple syllogism: anti-Zionism is a moral obligation, so, if anti-Zionism is antisemitism, antisemitism is a moral obligation.

What crimes? Even most apologists for Israel have given up denying them, and merely hint that noticing them is a bit antisemitic. After all, Israel ‘is no worse than anyone else’. First, so what? At age six we knew that “everyone’s doing it” is no excuse; have we forgotten? Second, the crimes are no worse only when divorced from their purpose. Yes, other people have killed civilians, watched them die for want of medical care, destroyed their homes, ruined their crops, and used them as human shields. But Israel does these things to correct the inaccuracy of Israel Zangwill’s 1901 assertion that

“Palestine is a country without a people; the Jews are a people without a country”.

It hopes to create a land entirely empty of gentiles, an Arabia deserta in which Jewish children can laugh and play throughout a wasteland called peace.

Well before the Hitler era, Zionists came thousands of miles to dispossess people who had never done them the slightest harm, and whose very existence they contrived to ignore.

Zionist atrocities were not part of the initial plan. They emerged as the racist obliviousness of a persecuted people blossomed into the racial supremacist ideology of a persecuting one. That is why the commanders who directed the rapes, mulilations and child-killings of Deir Yassin went on to become prime ministers of Israel.(*) But these murders were not enough. Today, when Israel could have peace for the taking, it conducts another round of dispossession, slowly, deliberately making Palestine unliveable for Palestinians, and liveable for Jews. Its purpose is not defense or public order, but the extinction of a people. True, Israel has enough PR-savvy to eliminate them with an American rather than a Hitlerian level of violence. This is a kinder, gentler genocide that portrays its perpetrators as victims.

Israel is building a racial state, not a religious one. Like my parents, I have always been an atheist. I am entitled by the biology of my birth to Israeli citizenship; you, perhaps, are the most fervent believer in Judaism, but are not. Palestinians are being squeezed and killed for me, not for you. They are to be forced into Jordan, to perish in a civil war. So no, shooting Palestinian civilians is not like shooting Vietnamese or Chechen civilians. The Palestinians aren’t ‘collateral damage’ in a war against well-armed communist or separatist forces. They are being shot because Israel thinks all Palestinians should vanish or die, so people with one Jewish grandparent can build subdivisions on the rubble of their homes. This is not the bloody mistake of a blundering superpower but an emerging evil, the deliberate strategy of a state conceived in and dedicated to an increasingly vicious ethnic nationalism. It has relatively few corpses to its credit so far, but its nuclear weapons can kill perhaps 25 million people in a few hours.

Do we want to say it is antisemitic to accuse, not just the Israelis, but Jews generally of complicity in these crimes against humanity? Again, maybe not, because there is a quite reasonable case for such assertions. Compare them, for example, to the claim that Germans generally were complicit in such crimes. This never meant that every last German, man, woman, idiot and child, were guilty. It meant that most Germans were. Their guilt, of course, did not consist in shoving naked prisoners into gas chambers. It consisted in support for the people who planned such acts, or–as many overwrought, moralistic Jewish texts will tell you–for denying the horror unfolding around them, for failing to speak out and resist, for passive consent. Note that the extreme danger of any kind of active resistance is not supposed to be an excuse here.

Well, virtually no Jew is in any kind of danger from speaking out. And speaking out is the only sort of resistance required. If many Jews spoke out, it would have an enormous effect. But the overwhelming majority of Jews do not, and in the vast majority of cases, this is because they support Israel. Now perhaps the whole notion of collective responsibility should be discarded; perhaps some clever person will convince us that we have to do this. But at present, the case for Jewish complicity seems much stronger than the case for German complicity. So if it is not racist, and reasonable, to say that the Germans were complicit in crimes against humanity, then it is not racist, and reasonable, to say the same of the Jews. And should the notion of collective responsibility be discarded, it would still be reasonable to say that many, perhaps most adult Jewish individuals support a state that commits war crimes, because that’s just true. So if saying these things is antisemitic, than it can be reasonable to be antisemitic.

In other words there is a choice to be made. You can use ‘antisemitism’ to fit your political agenda, or you can use it as a term of condemnation, but you can’t do both. If antisemitism is to stop coming out reasonable or moral, it has to be narrowly and unpolemically defined. It would be safe to confine antisemitism to explicitly racial hatred of Jews, to attacking people simply because they had been born Jewish. But it would be uselessly safe: even the Nazis did not claim to hate people simply because they had been born Jewish. They claimed to hate the Jews because they were out to dominate the Aryans.

Clearly such a view should count as antisemitic, whether it belongs to the cynical racists who concocted it or to the fools who swallowed it.

There is only one way to guarantee that the term “antisemitism” captures all and only bad acts or attitudes towards Jews. We have to start with what we can all agree are of that sort, and see that the term names all and only them. We probably share enough morality to do this.

For instance, we share enough morality to say that all racially based acts and hatreds are bad, so we can safely count them as antisemitic. But not all ‘hostility towards Jews’, even if that means hostility towards the overwhelming majority of Jews, should count as antisemitic. Nor should all hostility towards Judaism, or Jewish culture.

I, for example, grew up in Jewish culture and, like many people growing up in a culture, I have come to dislike it. But it is unwise to count my dislike as antisemitic, not because I am Jewish, but because it is harmless. Perhaps not utterly harmless: maybe, to some tiny extent, it will somehow encourage some of the harmful acts or attitudes we’d want to call antisemitic. But so what? Exaggerated philosemitism, which regards all Jews as brilliant warm and witty saints, might have the same effect. The dangers posed by my dislike are much too small to matter. Even widespread, collective loathing for a culture is normally harmless. French culture, for instance, seems to be widely disliked in North America, and no one, including the French, consider this some sort of racial crime.

Not even all acts and attitudes harmful to Jews generally should be considered antisemitic. Many people dislike American culture; some boycott American goods. Both the attitude and the acts may harm Americans generally, but there is nothing morally objectionable about either. Defining these acts as anti-Americanism will only mean that some anti-Americanism is perfectly acceptable. If you call opposition to Israeli policies antisemitic on the grounds that this opposition harms Jews generally, it will only mean that some antisemitism is equally acceptable.

If antisemitism is going to be a term of condemnation, then, it must apply beyond explicitly racist acts or thoughts or feelings. But it cannot apply beyond clearly unjustified and serious hostility to Jews. The Nazis made up historical fantasies to justify their attacks; so do modern antisemites who trust in the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. So do the closet racists who complain about Jewish dominance of the economy. This is antisemitism in a narrow, negative sense of the word. It is action or propaganda designed to hurt Jews, not because of anything they could avoid doing, but because they are what they are. It also applies to the attitudes that propaganda tries to instill. Though not always explicitly racist, it involves racist motives and the intention to do real damage. Reasonably well-founded opposition to Israeli policies, even if that opposition hurts all Jews, does not fit this description. Neither does simple, harmless dislike of things Jewish.

So far, I’ve suggested that it’s best to narrow the definition of antisemitism so that no act can be both antisemitic and unobjectionable. But we can go further. Now that we’re through playing games, let’s ask about the role of *genuine*, bad antisemitism in the Israel-Palestine conflict, and in the world at large.

Undoubtedly there is genuine antisemitism in the Arab world: the distribution of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the myths about stealing the blood of gentile babies. This is utterly inexcusable. So was your failure to answer Aunt Bee’s last letter. In other words, it is one thing to be told: you must simply accept that antisemitism is evil; to do otherwise is to put yourself outside our moral world. But it is quite something else to have someone try to bully you into proclaiming that antisemitism is the Evil of Evils. We are not children learning morality; it is our responsibility to set our own moral priorities. We cannot do this by looking at horrible images from 1945 or listening to the anguished cries of suffering columnists. We have to ask how much harm antisemitism is doing, or is likely to do, not in the past, but today. And we must ask where such harm might occur, and why.

Supposedly there is great danger in the antisemitism of the Arab world. But Arab antisemitism isn’t the cause of Arab hostility towards Israel or even towards Jews. It is an effect. The progress of Arab antisemitism fits nicely with the progress of Jewish encroachment and Jewish atrocities. This is not to excuse genuine antisemitism; it is to trivialize it. It came to the Middle East with Zionism and it will abate when Zionism ceases to be an expansionist threat. Indeed its chief cause is not antisemitic propaganda but the decades-old, systematic and unrelenting efforts of Israel to implicate all Jews in its crimes. If Arab anti-semitism persists after a peace agreement, we can all get together and cluck about it. But it still won’t do Jews much actual harm. Arab governments could only lose by permitting attacks on their Jewish citizens; to do so would invite Israeli intervention. And there is little reason to expect such attacks to materialize: if all the horrors of Israel’s recent campaigns did not provoke them, it is hard to imagine what would. It would probably take some Israeli act so awful and so criminal as to overshadow the attacks themselves.

If antisemitism is likely to have terrible effects, it is far more likely to have them in Western Europe. The neo-fascist resurgence there is all too real. But is it a danger to Jews? There is no doubt that LePen, for instance, is antisemitic. There is also no evidence whatever that he intends to do anything about it. On the contrary, he makes every effort to pacify the Jews, and perhaps even enlist their help against his real targets, the ‘Arabs’. He would hardly be the first political figure to ally himself with people he disliked. But if he had some deeply hidden plan against the Jews, that *would* be unusual: Hitler and the Russian antisemitic rioters were wonderfully open about their intentions, and they didn’t court Jewish support. And it is a fact that some French Jews see LePen as a positive development or even an ally. (see, for instance, “`LePen is good for us,’ Jewish supporter says”, Ha’aretz May 04, 2002, and Mr. Goldenburg’s April 23rd comments on France TV.)

Of course there are historical reasons for fearing a horrendous attack on Jews. And anything is possible: there could be a massacre of Jews in Paris tomorrow, or of Algerians. Which is more likely? If there are any lessons of history, they must apply in roughly similar circumstances. Europe today bears very little resemblance to Europe in 1933. And there are positive possibilities as well: why is the likelihood of a pogrom greater than the likelihood that antisemitism will fade into ineffectual nastiness? Any legitimate worries must rest on some evidence that there really is a threat.

The incidence of antisemitic attacks might provide such evidence. But this evidence is consistently fudged: no distinction is made between attacks against Jewish monuments and symbols as opposed to actual attacks against Jews. In addition, so much is made of an increase in the frequency of attacks that the very low absolute level of attacks escapes attention. The symbolic attacks have indeed increased to significant absolute numbers. The physical attacks have not.(*) More important, most of these attacks are by Muslim residents: in other words, they come from a widely hated, vigorously policed and persecuted minority who don’t stand the slightest chance of undertaking a serious campaign of violence against Jews.

It is very unpleasant that roughly half a dozen Jews have been hospitalized–none killed–due to recent attacks across Europe. But anyone who makes this into one of the world’s important problems simply hasn’t looked at the world. These attacks are a matter for the police, not a reason why we should police ourselves and others to counter some deadly spiritual disease. That sort of reaction is appropriate only when racist attacks occur in societies indifferent or hostile to the minority attacked. Those who really care about recurrent Nazism, for instance, should save their anguished concern for the far bloodier, far more widely condoned attacks on gypsies, whose history of persecution is fully comparable to the Jewish past. The position of Jews is much closer to the position of whites, who are also, of course, the victims of racist attacks.

No doubt many people reject this sort of cold-blooded calculation. They will say that, with the past looming over us, even one antisemitic slur is a terrible thing, and its ugliness is not to be measured by a body count. But if we take a broader view of the matter, antisemitism becomes less, not more important. To regard any shedding of Jewish blood as a world-shattering calamity, one which defies all measurement and comparison, is racism, pure and simple; the valuing of one race’s blood over all others. The fact that Jews have been persecuted for centuries and suffered terribly half a century ago doesn’t wipe out the fact that in Europe today, Jews are insiders with far less to suffer and fear than many other ethnic groups. Certainly racist attacks against a well-off minority are just as evil as racist attacks against a poor and powerless minority. But equally evil attackers do not make for equally worrisome attacks.

It is not Jews who live most in the shadow of the concentration camp. LePen’s ‘transit camps’ are for ‘Arabs’, not Jews. And though there are politically significant parties containing many antisemites, not one of these parties shows any sign of articulating, much less implementing, an antisemitic agenda. Nor is there any particular reason to suppose that, once in power, they will change their tune. Haider’s Austria is not considered dangerous for Jews; neither was Tudjman’s Croatia. And were there to be such danger, well, a nuclear-armed Jewish state stands ready to welcome any refugees, as do the US and Canada. And to say there are no real dangers now is not to say that we should ignore any dangers that may arise. If in France, for instance, the Front National starts advocating transit camps for Jews, or institutes anti-Jewish immigration policies, then we should be alarmed. But we should not be alarmed that something alarming might just conceivably happen: there are far more alarming things going on than that!

One might reply that, if things are not more alarming, it is only because the Jews and others have been so vigilant in combatting antisemitism. But this isn’t plausible. For one thing, vigilance about antisemitism is a kind of tunnel vision: as neofascists are learning, they can escape notice by keeping quiet about Jews. For another, there has been no great danger to Jews even in traditionally antisemitic countries where the world is *not* vigilant, like Croatia or the Ukraine. Countries that get very little attention seem no more dangerous than countries that get a lot. As for the vigorous reaction to LePen in France, that seems to have a lot more to do with French revulsion at neofascism than with the scoldings of the Anti-Defamation League. To suppose that the Jewish organizations and earnest columnists who pounce on antisemitism are saving the world from disaster is like claiming that Bertrand Russell and the Quakers were all that saved us from nuclear war.

Now one might say: whatever the real dangers, these events are truly agonizing for Jews, and bring back unbearably painful memories. That may be true for the very few who still have those memories; it is not true for Jews in general. I am a German Jew, and have a good claim to second-generation, third-hand victimhood. Antisemitic incidents and a climate of rising antisemitism don’t really bother me a hell of a lot. I’m much more scared of really dangerous situations, like driving. Besides, even painful memories and anxieties do not carry much weight against the actual physical suffering inflicted by discrimination against many non-Jews.

This is not to belittle all antisemitism, everywhere. One often hears of vicious antisemites in Poland and Russia, both on the streets and in government. But alarming as this may be, it is also immune to the influence of Israel-Palestine conflicts, and those conflicts are wildly unlikely to affect it one way or another. Moreover, so far as I know, nowhere is there as much violence against Jews as there is against ‘Arabs’. So even if antisemitism is, somewhere, a catastrophically serious matter, we can only conclude that anti-Arab sentiment is far more serious still. And since every antisemitic group is to a far greater extent anti-immigrant and anti-Arab, these groups can be fought, not in the name of antisemitism, but in the defense of Arabs and immigrants. So the antisemitic threat posed by these groups shouldn’t even make us want to focus on antisemitism: they are just as well fought in the name of justice for Arabs and immigrants.

In short, the real scandal today is not antisemitism but the importance it is given. Israel has committed war crimes. It has implicated Jews generally in these crimes, and Jews generally have hastened to implicate themselves. This has provoked hatred against Jews. Why not? Some of this hatred is racist, some isn’t, but who cares? Why should we pay any attention to this issue at all? Is the fact that Israel’s race war has provoked bitter anger of any importance besides the war itself? Is the remote possibility that somewhere, sometime, somehow, this hatred may in theory, possibly kill some Jews of any importance besides the brutal, actual, physical persecution of Palestinians, and the hundreds of thousands of votes for Arabs to be herded into transit camps? Oh, but I forgot. Drop everything. Someone spray-painted antisemitic slogans on a synagogue.

* Not even the ADL and B’nai B’rith include attacks on Israel in the tally; they speak of “The insidious way we have seen the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians used by anti-Semites“. And like many other people, I don’t count terrorist attacks by such as Al Quaeda as instances of antisemitism but rather of some misdirected quasi-military campaign against the US and Israel. Even if you count them in, it does not seem very dangerous to be a Jew outside Israel.

Michael Neumann is a professor of philosophy at Trent University in Ontario, Canada. He can be reached at: mneumann@trentu.ca

This article was originally published by “Counterpunch” –

The views and opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect those of Information Clearing House.

The Banality of Good pt. 7: Global Tribes vs. National Pride

February 05, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

If global capitalism is a problem, we may have to consider the idea that equality within borders is a possible answer.

If global capitalism is a problem, we may have to consider the idea that equality within borders is a possible answer.

Global Tribes vs. National Pride

Clara:   I have just been reading a Canadian Jewish news bulletin and all the tribal features are there: the community life with kosher catering, the private Sunday schools with their curriculum of Jewish culture, Judaism and the Holocaust, the comment on why we shouldn’t sympathize with Palestinian children and the trip for adolescents to Israel where each of them is supposed to find out ‘what Israel means to me’.

In my opinion one of the flaws of biologically oriented identity politics is the belief that ‘the differences between the respective identity groups are bigger than the differences within the group’ as the ‘Saker’ defines ‘racism’. I am not sure that supporting Israel’s politics is really in the best interests of all the Canadian (US-American, British or German) Jews or even in the best interests of the Israelis themselves. But as members of the tribe they are all on board of the same ship.

Is that what you mean when you argue that identity politics are a tool of globalization and that  the ‘identitarian tribes’ are used to support Neocon / Zionist policies?

Gilad: It is actually simpler than that. The emergence of more and more ghetto walls between us the people dismantles our ability to fight for our universal needs, let alone see the universal for what it is. In the name of diversity, we create a fragmented human landscape that is blinded to its fragments.  This tribal construct is indeed ideal environment for Neocons, mammonites as well as our compromised politicians.

Clara:   In ‘The wandering who’ you write that compassion has evaporated in Jewish thinking. I often feel it is the same in Germany: we do not sympathise with the Greek people and their poverty in connection with the introduction of the Euro, we think they ought to be punished for ‘being lazy, living above their means and not doing their homework’. The same goes for the poor in our country. And we mourn the victims of terrorism in Germany and France but we are not really interested in the terror victims in St Petersburg, Beirut or the terrible suffering in Yemen. And the one time our politicians seemed to show compassion by opening the borders for refugees, the many Germans who, like myself, welcomed that chance had to realize the double standards which were behind it: supporting the wars and economic policies that caused people to leave their homes and not adequately addressing the social and security problems the influx of refugees caused at home.  

Does this lack of compassion have to do with the ‘incapability of mourning one’s own fate’ we mentioned in the beginning of our conversation and which seems to be a common feature in Jewish and German mainstream thinking?

Gilad: The lack of compassion is a symptom of chosenness and exceptionalism . Chosenness and exceptionalism are indeed attached to Jewishness but not only. It is hardly a secret that the selfish manner of thinking is embedded in capitalist thinking. The next question you may want to ask yourself is what is the connection between Jewish culture and capitalism. This is obviously a loaded question that has many answers. Marx believed that the two were intrinsically tied. Werner Sombart agreed with Marx. Max Weber didn’t.  My point, as always, is that we must be able to discuss these matters in the open.

Clara:   I agree, and it is actually a kind of selective compassion with double standards. But there is also the aspect of collectively getting stuck in the victimized self-image connected with identitarian world views.
Anyway, let’s be a bit more specific here. In a talk you gave in Berlin you said that for example the international feminist movement was used to promote wars for the rights of Muslim women. And just recently Angela Jolie posed for NATO exactly for that reason. You also gave the example of gay rights. When it comes to attacking Russia, gay activists from many countries show their concern about gay rights there. So we are led from one fragmented campaign to the other and forget about more important issues.

But what is the alternative? In that talk you seemed to argue that we should return to think in terms of national interests instead. You seem to want to replace the concept of ‘identitarian tribes’ by returning to the idea of strong national states and fixed borders. Isn’t that a very dangerous right-wing concept? Doesn’t that lead to new chauvinism, the persecution of ethnic minorities and more?

Gilad:  This is a good question. To start with, I am not a political activist. I do not offer solutions or alternatives. As mentioned before, I am a philosopher, I am refining questions rather than repeating readymade answers.  I indeed often argue that if global capitalism is a problem (and it is a problem), we may have to consider the idea that equality within borders is a possible answer. Now, let’s talk about Nationalism and National States. I contend that Nationalism isn’t necessarily a problem unless celebrated on the expense of others. In the 1940’s people and nations were minced in the name of lebensraum, in the Neocon dominated global universe we do the same in the name of Coca-Cola, Gay-Rights and fake democracy. I argue, therefore that ethical thinking which is basically an Athenian aspired domain is the remedy.   

Clara:   If there is a definition of left wing, it is concern for social issues and anti-imperialism. Many people argue that politics addressing these issues need a strong national state, i.e. Bill Mitchell  (fiscal policies), Paul Steinhardt (social welfare policies – paywall) and Professor Michael Hartman (national elites are still strong). While others advocate ‘more EU’ to address social issues on an international level, these people claim that such a project is bound to fail, even if tried which currently is not really the case; the EU is not a social project. The right wing parties want ‘less EU’ as well, but tend to support neo-liberal policies.
But again – slippery grounds – people quickly ‘stone you’ when you start talking about the role of the national state. When Sarah Wagenknecht from the Left Party criticized Merkel’s open-border policy, she was accused of socializing with the right-wingers from AfD.

Often accusations of working together with right-wing people (Nazis!) replace an open exchange of argument. I think this is a dangerous development.

Gilad: Again, you are pointing at the Jerusalemite tendency, that tyranny of correctness that dictates a manner of speech, a pattern of ‘correct’ thinking, newspeak. Orwell recognized that that tendency is inherent to Left politics which is fascinating considering the Athenian dialectic nature of Marx thinking. We are living in an upside down world –The anti Fascist are often intrinsically fascists. The anti Zionists are mostly AZZ (Anti Zionist Zionists) and the Athenians who see it all are castigated subject to constant abuse. Yet, the people are not buying into that reality. Brexit proves that Brits want to see a change. Trump won because Americans are frustrated (surely, they are more frustrated now).  Far from being surprising the popularity of Corbyn in Britain and Sanders in the USA can be realised as a similar symptom of frustration with the current identitarian dystopia. Both leaders are nostalgic anti identiatrian characters.  The meaning of it is simple. We are moving into a realm that transcends beyond left/right banal binary. To be in time is to grasp the post political condition.

If they want to burn it, you want to read it …

cover bit small.jpg
%d bloggers like this: