From Useful Idiot to Useful Infidel: Meditations on the Folly of 21st Century “Intellectuals”

[The following is a transcript of a talk I gave at a conference on Intellectuals and Terror, a month ago. I held back publishing it because I wanted to give some good examples. The Flotilla offers precisely that "in spades." I will add links later on.]

The article with footnotes has now been published by

Terrorism and Political Violence Volume 25Issue 4, 2013

Special Issue: The Intellectuals and Terror: A Fatal Attraction

Lenin allegedly referred to Western intellectuals who so supported the communist experiment that they disguised its horrors from the West as “useful idiots,” because their idiotic romantic attachment to communist dreams made them highly useful allies in deceiving the West and preventing it from opposing the Soviet Union when it was still vulnerable.

Today observers use the term to describe liberal intellectuals who enjoy freedom and prosperity, yet undermine both by giving moral and material support to revolutionary movements hostile to such bourgeois values. But that’s actually a mild accusation against useful idiocy. By covering up the engineered famines in Ukraine and in China, by dismissing evidence of the Gulag Archipelago or the Cambodian killing fields, all of which killed tens, even hundreds of millions of people, useful idiots have been responsible for aiding and abetting the terrifying death machines.

Given that history itself revealed that they had been dupes of the most staggering sort, even such brilliant ones as George Bernard Shaw and Jean-Paul Sartre lost their credibility. One would think, therefore, that with the lessons of the last century still fresh in our minds, these memories would immunize us to the appeal of useful idiocy in the late 20th, early 21st century.

A fortiori, one would expect the wisdom so painfully gained in the course of the 20th to insulate the West from serving as useful idiots to a revolutionary movement with none of the idealistic appeal of communism, but rather with a record of regressive, gynophobic, authoritarian, and nihilistic traits that virtually guarantee that any success such a movement might have would be a catastrophe for those so unfortunate to have these revolutionaries “liberate” them.

So why would a late 20th century progressive sympathize with, support, run interference, even lie and deceive, for a movement that manifested all the worst traits of totalitarian megadeath from the 20th century – the cult of death, the embrace of nihilism, paranoia, and genocidal hate-mongering? At least the fellow travelers of the early and mid-20th century had a noble ideal for which they carried out their campaigns of misinformation. But now, we have intellectuals from a wide range of fields running interference for Islam, even in its most regressive forms.

And of course, at this asymmetrical stage in the war that Global Jihad wages against the West, nothing is more critical to the capacity of Jihad to mobilize – to recruit, indoctrinate, train, and deploy – its forces than a cognitive victory in which its targets in the West are kept in the dark about its real intentions. And given the yeoman job that apologists like John Esposito, Noah Feldman and Juan Cole perform in this sense, I think it worthwhile to use the expression “useful infidel” for this new breed of fellow travelers. Nothing is more useful to Jihadi ambitions to subject the entire world to Sharia than non-Muslim intellectuals who insist that Islam is a religion of peace that is perfectly consonant with democracy, and that the terrorists represent a tiny, marginal, deviation from true Islam.

I want to argue that this astonishing paradox – Islamic Jihad is the last thing one would expect reasonable, progressive intellectuals to support – strips away the pretence of naïve good intentions that the older “useful idiot” used to plead. Once we confront the “irrationality” of useful infidelity, and realize the urgency of trying to understand a phenomenon that pushes us in the direction of cultural, even civilizational suicide, we must confront the underlying (self-destructive) emotions.

Demopaths and their Dupes

It seems to me that the phenomenon of useful idiocy revolves around a particularly dysfunctional relationship, that between demopath and dupe. Demopaths arise in response to democratic cultures, which they target in a cognitive war suited only to assaults on such societies, that is, ones that embrace principles of a human right to freedom. They themselves embrace authoritarian principles of dominion by force, what Lee Smith has chronicled so chillingly in his latest book, The Strong Horse. Their line of attack: “you (democratic target) do not live up to your commitments; and in particular, you violate our (demopathic belligerent) rights in preventing us from participating in your democracy.”

The key to demopaths is their hypocrisy: they have no commitment to democratic values or human rights. On the contrary, they despise these values, and they have no intention of, once in power, respecting the rights of others. Their motto: “Use democracy to destroy democracy.”

Normally one might expect such hypocrisy would get challenged and driven from the public sphere, especially by intelligent, perspicacious observers, committed to building a better, more peaceful and more just society. And certainly, one would think, after the abject intellectual failure of geniuses on both the “right” (Jung, Heidigger, Schmidt) and the left (Shaw, Malraux, Sartre, Hemingway), intellectuals in subsequent generations might have hesitated somewhat to plunge down the same path.

But for reasons we must understand better, the demopathic hypocrisy has returned in an even cruder and more transparent form, and yet many Western progressives seem hell-bent on becoming dupes. Indeed, when I first developed this notion of demopathy, I remember describing it to an acquaintance who had worked for 20 years in the UN. Her response: that is the prevailing principle in UN: authoritarian elites using the dominant human rights discourse to their own ends.

Self Criticism and the Human Rights Complex

One dimension of the problem appears in one of the early cases of useful idiocy, that of the “pacifist” Roger Nash Baldwin, the founder of the ACLU in 1920. So even as he spearheaded an organization severely critical of civil liberties in the US, he could, a decade later, write a book of fulsome praise entitled Liberty under the Soviets. Here we find featured a characteristic tendency of useful idiots towards ferocious self-criticism of the culture that allows them their freedoms, and a refusal to apply those standards elsewhere.

To better understand this “hyper self-criticism,” consider what Charles Jacobs terms “the Human Rights Complex.” Western Human Rights organizations – groups like AI and HRW – operate according to a consistent if unconscious formula: moral indignation is a function not of how badly the victim suffers, but the perpetrator. If the perps are “white” (i.e., part of the culture that has developed the principles of “human rights”) then indignation waxes; if they are of color, an embarrassed silence descends. Thus, to take a particularly salient example, the UN Conference against Racism at Durban – which was itself the summit of demopathy – condemned Western countries for slavery even though they are the only ones to apologize for and outlaw it, while falling silent about the current practice of slavery in the Arab world.

At one level, this pattern derives from an unofficial, sliding scale of expectations: progressives committed to the highest standards of civil liberties and human rights naturally demand more from those prepared to make those sacrifices. [Goldstone]. And on some level, such an attitude makes sense. Self criticism doesn’t come easily, so let those with more practice get the ball rolling.

The problem here emerges when self-criticism begins to substitute for reciprocity: criticizing oneself first takes courage and commitment, but it’s only meaningful if it’s based on reciprocity, on the principle that the concession away from a hardline “my side right or wrong” will bring a similar move among one’s foes. But all too often, reciprocity does not come.

On the contrary, as at Durban, rather than feeling in any way contrite or intimidated, Arab countries where the most blatant racism continues unabated, led to the pack in assaulting a suitably contrite Western world. Far from reciprocity, we have headed in a radically different direction, towards a kind of “Masochistic Omnipotence Syndrome” in which we believe that everything is our fault and if we could only perfect ourselves, we could fix everything.”

Of course, the consequence of this move is to absolve the “other” of all responsibility. If he strikes at us, it must be our fault. 9-11? What have we done to make them hate us so? Sharon’s visit to the Temple Mount provoked the Intifada, just as the Pope’s citing a passage about an inherently violent Islam provoked a wave of rioting that killed over a dozen people. “They” have no agency; they only react to our deeds. Ultimately, people with HRC treat people of color like animals, with no moral agency: just as we don’t scold our cat for killing mice, so they do not scold Muslims for engaging in terror. It must be our fault.

And of course, this “puts a sword in the hands of our enemies with which to slay us.” Why on earth, if we’re willing to take responsibility for every violence that Jihadis inflict on us, would they not press the advantage, and both attack us and blame us for the attack? This is demopaths’ paradise.

This phenomenon seems to cry out for analysis. After all, on the one hand it’s suicidal – it empowers the enemies of human freedom – and on the other, it’s racist. One would imagine that in the anti-racist, progressive circles of the late 20th early 21st century, such an approach would find few takers. And yet, the opposite is true.

Indeed, one might argue that this masochistic self criticism, what Pascal Bruckner calls the “tyranny of guilt,” has become the dominant Zeitgeist, a kind of default approach to culture clashes. We embrace a whole series of rhetorical tropes as if they were real, especially moral relativity – Gitmo is like the Gulag – or even moral inversion – the US is the worst terrorist state in the world, Blair is worse than Ahmadinejad, Bush worse than Bin Laden.

But these are, at origin, prophetic tropes, aimed at moral exhortation, not as descriptions of reality. When Isaiah compares Israel to Sodom and Amorah, when Jesus challenges those who complain about the mote in another’s eye while they ignore the beam in theirs, they spoke to highly sophisticated and self-critical audiences, and used prophetic rhetoric to castigate, to whip these sensitive souls into shape. It wasn’t because the Israelites really were as bad as Sodom, or that those attending the sermon on the mount really were focused on their neighbor’s speck of sawdust while ignoring their own heavy lumber.

And yet, contrary to common sense and self-preservation, such figures of speech are taken literally to refer in real life. The results can be summarized in the following history of humankind, on one foot:

Memes and Social Development


Identity meme: invidious formation (pre-modern) “My/Our side right or wrong”

This meme involves sharp boundaries between the good “us” and the bad “them” who receive no empathy. As Mel Brooks’ 2000 year old man put it humorously: “tragedy is when I cut my finger. I cry a lot, I go into Mount Sinai for a day a half; comedy is if you fall in an open man hole and die. What do I care?” On some level, every human being shares this perspective, and only by dint of serious effort does one even temporarily transcend it. On both an individual and a group level, it constitutes perhaps the most fundamental meme in human evolution, the solidarity meme: my side – or me – right or wrong.

Justice meme: (modern, civil polities) “Whoever is right, my side or not.”


Self-denial meme: (post-modern, suicidal) “Their side right or wrong”

The “other” in Levinasian-Derridian post-modernism, the epistemological priority of the “other” in post-colonial activism. To atone for our colonial past we must embrace the rage of the wretched of the earth.

Perhaps the most eloquent expression of this last meme was uttered by one of the UNHRC appointed Goldstone Commission. Asked about the reliability of Palestinian testimony accusing Israel of war crimes, Hina Jilani, the Pakistani Supreme Court Judge, “internationally known for her expertise in human rights investigations,” commented: “It would be cruel not to give their testimony credence.” The fact that it is cruel to believe vicious slander does not occur to her; nor that, in believing such accusations and ignoring evidence of Hamas’ systematic use of civilian shields, she has empowered the very people who abuse the Gazans, does not seem to even occur to her.

Now she may be a demopath, and she is certainly enabling demopaths; but Goldstone, whose “fact-finding” Mission actually acted as a venue for accusations against Israel, is a first-order dupe. And his style – as a Jew it is incumbent upon me to bend over backwards to be self-critical – illustrates the psychology of the dupes. I must embrace the demopath’s attacks to prove my good faith.

Here we touch on the role of hyper-self-critical Jews in this dynamic. Masochistic Omnipotence Syndrome is a messianic affliction that strikes particularly those attracted to the notion of “Tikkun Olam,” people like Michael Lerner, who’s organization, Tikkun, just awarded their annual Ethics award to Judge Goldstone for his stellar work… as the most prominent dupe to demopaths of the year. Instead, we should be giving out the annual “Ayn ani li” awards to the Jews who push self-abnegation to the extremes of masochism.

Obviously, I could go on forever charting and exposing the insanity of our principled dupedom in the face of a grotesquely hypocritical and lethal demopathic assault, and many books about the tyranny of politically correct principles have done just that. What I’d like to do in closing is address the theme of this conference: what makes intellectuals behave in so astonishingly idiotic and self-destructive ways. Here I’d like to invoke three basic issues:

1) Cognitive dissonance and the Year 1989:

This psychological mechanism, first identified by Leon Festinger in the study of an apocalyptic UFO cult’s response to the failure of prophecy, clearly plays a central role in the fellow traveler’s response to what Arthur Koestler called, “The God that failed.” And yet despite a series of incidents that could have led to a final break with the monstrosity of the Soviet Union, many intellectuals continued to maintain a low-key loyalty, an idiocy no longer even useful to a failed totalitarian state. But, as Hillel Stavis points out, in 1989, useful idiots the world over took a heavy blow. When the Wall came down, followed soon thereafter by the collapse of the Soviet Union, the mother-ship had vanished, leaving dependent space modules floating free.

1989 also happens to be a key year in the ascent of global Jihad. It was the year the Russians left Afghanistan, giving Bin Laden his first and most spectacular victory against the Infidel; and it was the year Khoumeini issued a fatwa calling for the murder of Salmon Rushdie for blaspheming against Islam with his novel, The Satanic Verses. In both cases, Islamic Jihadis (both Sunni and Shiite) struck blows against the West. For all those radical, revolution-at-all-costs, modules floating in the distressing outer-space of cognitive dissonance, a new ally had just appeared on the horizon.

2) Envy and European/Progressive Anti-Americanism and Anti-Zionism

One of the great and disturbing revelations for me of the “progressive” left response to the outbreak of the Intifada and to the attack of 9-11, was the role of envy in their responses: the politics of envy, Paul Hollander calls it appropriately. The palpable resentment of the US in Europe is nearly suffocating for anyone who does not thrive on such an atmosphere of self-indulgence, especially given the enormous debt the Europe owes the US for its freedom and prosperity. But, as the expression goes, “no good deed goes unpunished,” and as an unusually honest French woman commented, “France will never forgive the US for saving it twice.” Perhaps nothing illustrates so strikingly the Europeans’ desperate need to dump on the USA than the widespread perception there that Noam Chomsky is one of the great intellectuals of the age. How the mighty have fallen.

But even their hatred of the USA pales beside the resentment of Israel. Why? Unlike the USA, Israel is not a great power, not a crushing cultural entity whose movies and fast-food chains do not displace the once-great European entertainment and restaurant industry. Why the animus towards Israel?

To those who would argue “Esau hates Jacob,” I’d like to comment: “Do not read ‘Esau’ bit rather ‘envy’.” Why the envy? Because Israel – i.e. the only openly Jewish revolutionary leftist endeavor of the 20th century, constitutes the only case of an egalitarian revolution that, when attacked from without and criticized from within, did not turn totalitarian. Unlike the French with their terror, the Soviets, Maoists, Khmer Rouge, etc., the Israelis did not respond to the threat with paranoia and the suppression of dissent as treachery.

As a result, their 60+ years of democracy under conditions that no other democratic revolution had sustained for even a handful of years, constitutes the most exceptional record of commitment to genuine democratic values in the history of mankind. And the Europeans and other leftists, for whom their own past weighs heavily on their claim to greatness, the example of Israel shines a harsh light on their failures.

But for “Moral Europe” the need to preen on the world stage as the cutting edge of global morality is apparently so great an addiction that they cannot “just say no” to life-threatening postures. Thus, despite all the “moral” protestations, their driving passion is anti-Zionism. They can despise the US for its barbaric use of the death penalty, but when they turn to the Middle East they despise Israel, the only country without a death penalty, and lionize the Palestinians, for whom executions without trial for “collaboration” are a way of life. Apparently the moral Schadenfreude of being able to accuse the Jews just tastes too sweet.

All of this makes Europeans particularly susceptible to Muslim hate-mongering about both the little Satan and the great Satan. Like some grotesquely overweight man with a cholestoral count of over 300, they continue to scarf down the cheese-burgers of anti-Americanism and wash them down with the chocolate truffles of anti-Zionism. Who would have thought that a civilization could commit suicide from an addiction to moral Schadenfreude?

3) Fear and intimidation

This brings me to my last remark. Behind much of this suicidal advocacy lies fear. The dupes of demopaths love to accuse critics of demopaths of Islamophobia. Actually, this is a classic case of projection. They are the ones afraid of Islam; they are the ones who dare not challenge their Muslim allies. On the contrary, they do everything to help Muslims save face.

That is why, rather than demand reciprocity, the left turns to masochistic self-reproach. Not only do they not want to test the limits of their moral paradigm, they know that they will provoke violence. In this sense, the parallels with Neville “Peace in our time” Chamberlain are particularly salient. How much easier to declare peace, than to pay heed to the old Roman saying “si vis pacem para bellum.” How much easier to blame the Pope, or Sharon, or Bush of having provoked the Muslims, than demand some signs – even faint signs – or moral responsibility from Muslims!

Much of the MSNM’s treatment of the Arab-Israeli conflict can be explained by the following observation: if you criticize Israel, even dishonestly, there’s no price to pay; if you criticize the Arabs, even honestly, there’s a high price to pay.

In this sense, much of the moral dysfunction of the left, much of their predilection for useful idiocy comes from fear of Islamist violence. Having taken the cowards way out, why not admire those do not hesitate to use it. In the final expression of the moral inversion involved in “their side right or wrong,” a self-castrated, atheist left that embraces the meme – War is not the answer and despises its own culture’s religious fundamentalism – ends up siding with the most alien of others, men and women for whom war is the best answer, for whom the most ferociously destructive death cults are willed by God.

Can a civilization destruct from stupidity? Stay tuned and find out. Or start fighting back. If not now, when?

114 Responses to From Useful Idiot to Useful Infidel: Meditations on the Folly of 21st Century “Intellectuals”

  1. ofer says:

    Two recent examples of demophathic behavior by Arab MP’s in Israel: the “peace activists” killing on board the “Marmara” was branded by an Arab politician during an interview on Israeli television as “genocide”! so- the passengers populating the ship are a GENOS! the “marmerians” probably… or rather he had in mind a genocide against Turks- 9 dead out of a nation of more than 72 million citizens… In another instance, after it was published that a police report estimated that about 20 thousand illegal firearms are by-now accumulated in Arab towns (and might some day be pointed toward Jewish neighbors and law enforcement agencies), the report was declared by one Arab MP as “racist”!

  2. E.G. says:

    RL,

    progressives committed to the highest standards of civil liberties and human rights naturally demand more from those prepared to make those sacrifices.

    See: point 4
    http://www.liberation.fr/monde/0101639890-pour-repondre-a-bhl

  3. andrew says:

    Colonialism again: could all this agitation about the rights of Palestinians, so far as Iran and Turkey are
    concerned (the case of useful idiots is completely different), be mostly an attempt to cover
    a division of the M.E. into two spheres of influence,
    to wit Lebanon for the Iran-Syria axis, while Turkey
    would get a foot in Gaza, having made it clear that
    Gaza lies at the center of their preoccupations ? Of course, this may remind us of the Sykes-Picot agreement
    between France and England. It will be interesting, and
    perhaps helpful, to see what Mubarak has to say about
    Iran or Turkey trying to have ”humanitarian” boats
    escorted by warships. On the other hand, I have read it today that a certain Ramallah politician denounces
    the idea of lifting the Gaza blockade: he even goes so far as saying that the humanitarian side is only a
    pretext. It seems that only the European left is single-minded about the whole affair.

  4. Lorenz Gude says:

    As someone who knows a lot of people of the anti American left here in Australia your analysis leads to exactly where I hoped it would go. That Islamophobia is a classic case of projection and therefore, “That is why, rather than demand reciprocity, the left turns to masochistic self-reproach. Not only do they not want to test the limits of their moral paradigm, they know that they will provoke violence.”

    It is just great to see the whole argument laid out in one place. We are going to have to understand this dynamic if we are going to heal our cultural immune system.

  5. E.G. says:

    I join Lorenz Gude’s acclaim.
    Point 2, envy, is spot on and esp. well couched.

  6. Sergio says:

    Brilliant piece! I would add that Europeans love to bash Israel also to alleviate their guilt for the shoah, a highly successfull Pan-European project of extermination.

  7. incognito says:

    1. Collapse: Khaled Abu Toameh, after describing what Hamas does to the population in Gaza — they are the real blockaders — he demonstrates how the useful idiots — which now include the whole world — for the umpteenth time save the ass of terrorists just when they are down and at risk (Collapse):

    The flotilla incident came at a time when Hamas appeared to be losing its popularity among Palestinians, largely due to the deteriorating economic situation in the Gaza Strip. It also came at a time when even some of Hamas’s supporters were beginning to criticize the movement, especially over its decision to demolish scores of “illegal” houses in the southern Gaza Strip and the execution of criminals and “collaborators” with Israel.

    2. Collapse:

    the “peace activists” killing on board the “Marmara” was branded by an Arab politician during an interview on Israeli television as “genocide”!

    But of course: the real Holocaust is denied and replaced by the dozens of holocausts of today: Jenin, Marmara, Gaza, in order to prepare for the 2nd real Holocaust.

    3. Collapse:

    be mostly an attempt to cover
    a division of the M.E. into two spheres of influence,
    to wit Lebanon for the Iran-Syria axis, while Turkey
    would get a foot in Gaza

    That’s exactly what was predicted would happen with the US and EU collapse. Turkey waited until it was sure Obama is an idiot.

    It will be interesting, and
    perhaps helpful, to see what Mubarak has to say about
    Iran or Turkey trying to have ”humanitarian” boats
    escorted by warships.

    Mubarak is on his way out — without US backing he’ll fold. Whoever follows him will be fodder for the islamists, particularly if it’s the idiot from IAEA.
    Amr Moussa is already pushing the Arab League to jump on the strong horses Iran and Turkey. The pax post-american.

    Collapse:

    “That is why, rather than demand reciprocity, the left turns to masochistic self-reproach. Not only do they not want to test the limits of their moral paradigm, they know that they will provoke violence.”

    How much left do you know that does not involve, one way or the other, totalitarianism and violence?

    And no, it is not masochistic. It’s the capitalist/liberal democracy system that is the criminal. The lefties are exploiting the liberties of the system they abhor to ally with the islamists — an anathema to their ideology — to bring it down without realizing that they will probably first to be eliminated by the new overlords. That’s why they are useful idiots.

    Think collapse (internal and external) and everything falls into place, almost every development is predictable.

  8. E.G. says:

    incog: link please!

  9. Daniel Bielak says:

    E.G.,

    Here’s the link to the article that incognito quoted (I found it with google by pasting into the google search field some of the text that incognito quoted).

    “What About Hamas’s Siege of Gaza?” by Khaled Abu Toameh
    http://www.hudsonny.org/2010/06/hamas-siege-of-gaza.php

  10. Daniel Bielak says:

    Off-Topic

    Turkey (and, most likely, Iran) squeezed as much militarily tactical, and propagandicly tactical, strategic componentiality as they could into their Jihad Flotilla campaign.

    “The Gaza War Flotilla aka transport for heavy weapons”, “Heavy weapons, mortars, artillery shells, bazookas and 1Million stashed Euro notes were found in the cargo of the M/S. MAVI MARMARA Flotilla Ship.”
    Link to page with quoted article: http://www.israelforum.com/blog_article.php?aid=2808270
    Link to page of original article (page currently gone): http://docstalk.blogspot.com/2010/06/gaza-war-flotilla-aka-transport-for.html
    Link to page with video: http://www.flix.co.il/tapuz/showVideo.asp?m=3423928

  11. Daniel Bielak says:

    “The War Against Israel – Terror, lies and slander are the main tools of the Leftist-Islamist alliance against the Jewish state”, BY GERALD M. STEINBERG, Jerusalem, Wall Street Journal, June 7, 2010
    FUll Article: http://www.imra.org.il/story.php3?id=48349
    Link to Original Article on WSJ (full article on WSJ requires subscription: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704025304575283832128809598.html

    Comment by Hugh Fitzgerald on a recent post on Jihad Watch
    http://www.jihadwatch.org/2010/06/danish-reporter-humanitarian-crisis-in-gaza-what-humanitarian-crisis.html#comment-676014

    “When Gazan Arabs broke through last year into the Sinai, and Egyptian towns along the border, they were reported as being amazed at “how poor” the Egyptians were. And why not? The Gazan Arabs have managed, like a great many other Arabs on UNRWA elsewhere, and a great many Arabs and Muslims on Western aid money still elsewhere, to arrange things so that they are on a permanent dole. They can thus spend their time trying to plan and carry out attacks on those who supply them with electricity, water, and 15,000 tons of food, medicine, and other supplies every single week — without a single “activist” ever bothering to recognize this, nor any of those papers busy denouncing Israel — that is, the government of Israel, which has no obligation to continue to supply power, or food, or medicine, or anything at all, to people who are in a permanent state of war with Israel because that is what Islam tells them to do, and they are intent on doing it.

    When, in human history, has the intended target of total destruction ever supplied what Israel supplies to the Gazan Arabs (that electric power, water, and 15,000 tons of food, medicine, and so on), that is in wartime supplied to those who wish to wipe it out?

    Give me a single example of any other state, at any time, doing this.

    No, I didn’t think you could.

    Well, why don’t those who appear on debates ever ask this mind-opening question?

    Cat got their tongues?

    What exactly is it, that they can’t discuss the Jihad against Israel that has no end?”

  12. Adam says:

    Brilliant article. My thought is that it’s also wishful thinking. The chattering classes of European countries believe that our societies have “evolved” beyond the need for war or violence. They’d rather believe that there is never a reason to fight anyone. Therefore they believe anyone who says they don’t want violence despite all evidence to the contary e.g. Hamas or Chamberlain with Hitler.

    They bury their head in the sand and believe what demopaths tell them because its what they want to hear.

  13. E.G. says:

    Todah Daniel.

  14. incognito says:

    Interesting article by Pipes:

    Islamist Turkey Overreaches
    by Daniel Pipes
    http://www.danielpipes.org/8467/islamist-turkey-overreaches

    I agree with his “islamists can’t help themselves” theory. Unfortunately, his notion that true face exposure will prove deleterious I don’t buy. From what we’ve seen to date, when they show their true face, they get fear and appeasement.

    IOW, they are showing their true face in large part because they have already ascertained that the west has collapsed.

    Indeed, Hamas is totally incapable of helping itself. They could never pretend moderation to improve strategically like Arafat could. Yet, as Abu Toameh demonstrates, they and not Fatah have come on top.

    That’s because it’s not islamism that is the problem. It’s the suicidal west.

  15. Daniel Bielak says:

    To Israeli leaders,

    People of the country of the Jewish people, Israel, wake up! Wisely, verbally and non-lethaly physically defend yourselves! Protect yourselves from harm!

    1. Start screaming the the facts of – start fervently, firmly, and clearly communicating the facts of – the factual 90 year history of the situation to the world!; The root problem of the current situation is the current global mass-belief in a perverse, obscene, false narrative of the history of the situation! The current global mass-belief in a perverse, obscene, false narrative of the history of the situation is the root problem of the current situation! Almost all people in the world, including almost all of the members of the governments of all Western democratic states, believe this perverse, obscene, false narrative of the history of the situation! This false narrative is the distorting prism through which those who believe this false narrative distortedly – wrongly – view events that occur that are part of the situation! Stop the global mass-belief in the false narrative of the history of the situation! End the global mass-belief in the false narrative of the history of the situation! Tell the facts of the past 90 years of the situation! Tell the factual history of the situation!

    2. Stop aiding, and start strategically, non-violently, destroying, Hamas and Fatah-the-PLO-the-Palestinian-Authority! – Who are people who are engaged in, and who have, in the case of Fatah-the-PLO, for over 50 years, and, in the case of Hamas, for over 20 years, been engaged in, a strategic effort to annihilate you! And who are people who the whole world has, in some cases, been unwittingly, and has, in other cases, been wittingly, aiding in their strategic effort to annihilate you! And who are people who now the Islamic-Supremacist regime Iran is, with the indirect and direct, and unwitting and witting, aid of the whole world, using as a strategic weapon to annihilate you! And who are people who you have allowed to be brought alongside what are your enemy-demanded, self-accepted, indefensible, untennable, unjust, borders, and within what are your rightful sovereign borders! And who are people who, and who are people whose effort to annihilate you, you are delusionaly unwittingly aiding, and have been delusionaly unwittingly aiding for over 20 years!!!

  16. Daniel Bielak says:

    E.G.,

    Bevakasha. :-)

  17. incognito says:

    Helen Thomas and Peter Beinart
    She personifies the reality he denies.
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704002104575291341382226952.html?mod=djemEditorialPage_h

  18. incognito says:

    Martin Kramer: Yousef Munayyer, head of the Palestine Center in DC, called me a racist in the Boston Globe for my Herzliya speech (http://bit.ly/bO4wn2). So what’s his take on Helen Thomas’ excretion (http://bit.ly/bw6ROJ)? “Thomas may have unpopular personal views but there is far more at play here behind the criticism of her from right-wing figures.” Unpopular views! What an original euphemism!

  19. incognito says:

    Hitchens does not seem to be able to rid himself of leftism, but only with respect to Israel. Must have been very inconvenient to find out that your mother was jewish but hid it to save her family. Not the kind of background he would like given his image of courage and contrarian.

    Rosner’s Domain: Discovering Turkey’s human right’s record

    One must agree with Hitchens:

    There’s something slightly hypocritical about the way in which Israeli crowds have suddenly discovered the human rights record and the regional imperial ambitions of their former ally.

    But do you also agree with this statement?

    Turkey and Israel possess large and educated populations that want in their way to be part of “the West.” They also both suffer from mediocre and banana-republic-type leaders, who are willing prisoners of clerical extremists in their own second-rate regimes.

  20. Daniel Bielak says:

    Correction:

    “…And who are people who, and who are people whose effort to annihilate you, you are delusionaly unwittingly aiding, and have been delusionaly unwittingly aiding for over 20 years!!!

    Should be,

    “…And who are people who you are delusionally wittingly aiding, and have been delusionally wittingly aiding for over 20 years, and who are people whose effort to annihilate you you are unwittingly aiding, and have been unwittingly aiding for over 50 years!!!

  21. incognito says:

    Must read:

    An irrational, obscene hatred
    By WILLIAM SHAWCROSS
    http://www.jpost.com/Home/Article.aspx?id=177768

  22. Sergio says:

    Now, Hitchens has a point here regarding human rights violations in Turkey that Israel was silent about. Another realpolitik issue? On the other hand, what right has Turkey to pose as moral paragon? First and foremost is Turkey who has to come clear about its past.

  23. incognito says:

    If true, it’s wonderful for Obama. Note the Turkish angle.

    Osama bin Laden and top aides are hiding in Sabzevar, Iran
    http://www.debka.com/article/8841/

  24. incognito says:

    Who was saying here that he has not yet seen direct actions against Israel? Here they come:

    http://www.jpost.com/MiddleEast/Article.aspx?id=177861

  25. incognito says:

    This is from Debka, so a grain of salt is recommended.
    But if I were teheran and Ankara I would have no compunction to go ahead with this — just taking candy from children. Note the response from Britain and Israel in the face of this cunning aggression. Wanna bet on Obama?

    An Iranian sea convoy will back up the Turkish campaign to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza.

    Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad assured Turkish leaders whom he met in Istanbul Tuesday, Jan. 8 that the vessels due to enter the disputed waters within days will not shrink from a head-on clash with Israel’s Navy and Air Force exclusion forces. “We’ll breach the Gaza blockade,” the Iranian president vowed. The Iranian Red Crescent vessels will carry “volunteer marines” of the Revolutionary Guards “who will teach the Israelis a lesson.”
    Tehran’s “humanitarian convoy” for Gaza will consist of three Iranian vessels flying Red Crescent flags.

    debkafile’s intelligence sources report that he promised Turkish leaders to attach Iranian warships and submarines to the Red Crescent ships for their voyage through the Red Sea, the Suez Canal and into the Mediterranean. For some months, one or two Iranian submarines have been deployed in the Mediterranean using Syrian naval port facilities.

    The showdown between Turkey and Israel, said Ahmadinejad, “will change many issues in the world and mark the final countdown for Israel’s existence. It shows that it has no room in the region and no one is ready to live alongside it.”

    British Foreign Secretary William Hague condemned Iran’s plan to send aid boats to Gaza, warning that the move would deliberately aggravate an already tense situation. “It is not helpful, and probably it is not designed to be helpful, he said.
    Russian Prime Pinister Vladimir Putin, for his part, promised to join Ankara in bringing the Israeli attack on the Turkish flotilla before the United Nations.
    The Iranian and Turkish leaders meeting in Istanbul Monday and Tuesday finalized a plan to synchronize the flotilla’s approach to Gaza’s shores with the UN Security Council vote on sanctions against Iran, whereupon Turkey, Brazil and Lebanon, who are SC members, will halt the procedure and turn the session around to the unfolding sea battle between Iran and Israel. The sanctions vote will be buried by the sounds of war.
    Monday, June 7, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton predicted “Iran would pull some stunt in the next couple of days” to divert attention from the unity within the Security Council.
    According to our sources, the Iranian convoy will consist of a cargo ship loaded with food and other essentials, medicines and building materials; the second will carry the “volunteer” marines; and the third will be a floating hospital to be anchored permanently in Egyptian Mediterranean territorial waters opposite the divided Gaza-Egyptian town of Rafah. Small boats will ferry patients between Gaza and the hospital ship.

    Tehran calculates that the Israeli navy will not attack boats carrying sick people and will be constrained from venturing into Egyptian territorial waters to hit the floating hospital. By this means, Tehran will dismantle Israel’s sea blockade while also gaining a military presence off the shores of Gaza.

    AS details of this scheme are drawn up in Istanbul, Israeli leaders are spending hour of hour, day after day, quibbling over the format of an inquiry commission for studying the legal aspects of the hapless commando raid they ordered against the Mavi Marmara on May 31.
    Have they formed any plans for countering the Iranian-Turkish scheme to drive Tehran’s flotilla through the Gaza blockade? And if so, where will the interception take place? On the Red Sea, where the Iranian Navy has a large presence, at the entrance to the Gulf of Suez or close to Gaza?
    An Israel operation against Iranian vessels on any of these sea lanes would pose formidable difficulties.

  26. incognito says:

    Here’s my bet: Russia+Turkey+Iran will cow the west into (1) pressuring Israel to lift the blockade (2) drop or delay or defang the Iran sanctions in return for not sending the flotilla.

    And they’ll succeed.

  27. E.G. says:

    incognito,

    Debka?!
    Come on.

  28. Daniel Bielak says:

    incognito,

    “Never, Never, Never, Never give up.”
    – Winston Churchill

    “Think not lightly of evil, saying, ‘It will not come to me.’ Drop by drop is the water pot filled. Likewise, the fool, gathering it little by little, fills himself with evil.

    Think not lightly of good, saying, ‘It will not come to me.’ Drop by drop is the water pot filled. Likewise, the wise man, gathering it little by little, fills himself with good.”
    – The Buddha, Dhammapada

    Dhammapada
    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/dhp/dhp.01.budd.html

    Over and out.

  29. Rich Rostrom says:

    Pof. Landes: I think you are overanalyzing here.

    There are two reinforcing factors here.

    The primary one is the Western adherence to principles of abstract justice over ties of blood or community. Rome’s first legendary hero was the co-founder of the Repbulic, Lucius Junius Brutus, who prosecuted his own sons for treason. Such a position would be unthinkable to an Arab. One of them might kill his son for betraying or dishonoring him, but never for a crime against others.

    The same principle applies to larger communities. Westerners criticize and condemn their elites with great freedom, and we salute those critics as heroes. This extends even to injuries done to outsiders. We praise (with good reason) those who pursue justice for others against their own kin or community. However, it’s got to the point it’s become the chief badge of honor and a fetish.

    The other factor is that the colonial empires were created to a great degree in contradiction of Western standards of justice. In the 20th century, the moralists triumphed, and the colonial powers gave up their occupation colonies.

    However, the settler colonies persisted.

    In the U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, the natives were few, were primitive, were displaced or absorbed or died. The new demographic and political order was beyond revision.

    But even so, colonial/settler guilt became a huge cultural factor. In U.S. discourse, acknowledgements of the Indians as the “true natives” are ubiquitous and casual. Also, exposing and to a degree redressing the wrongs done to natives became an important scholarly and political trend in all the settler countries.

    It even became a racket, as fictitious crimes were read into the accepted historical record. Vide Ward Churchill and Keith Windschuttle. Churchill made a lucrative career out of posing as an Indian and peddling fraudulent white-guilt scholarship. Windschuttle was excoriated by fellow Australian scholars for exploding the myth of genocide in Tasmania.

    But for all the aboriginal race-hustling, all these countries are permanently white (or at least non-native).

    South Africa was different. It was a settler colony where the settlers were a minority, keeping power by force. As such it was universally condemned, and eventually brought down.

    Now we come to the kernel in the nut.

    Israel was established as a settler colony.

    That was the goal of the Zionist movement. The Zionists chose Palestine for its historical connection, and because it was supposed to be almost empty. But it wasn’t.

    In 1922 there were 600,000 Moslems and 84,000 Jews in Palestine. Many Zionists assert that these Moslems were nearly all recent immigrants, attracted by the development work of the First and Second Aliyah. Some were. But in 1922, in the desolate Trans-Jordan region, untouched by Zionist works, there were 200,000 to 300,000 Moslems. The Moslem “base population” of Palestine was at least as great, i.e. far larger than the Jewish population, even after the Third Aliyah.

    The Labor Zionists hoped to finesse this by buying off Arab opposition. As Jabotinsky predicted, the Arabs weren’t for sale, and the issue was decided by war.

    Thus the creation of Israel can (arguably) be described as a “settler” takeover of the country from its previous inhabitants.

    Israel thus is heir to all the colonial and settler guilt of all the West: the de facto scapegoat for everything from the opium trade to the Trail of
    Tears to the Congo Free State.

    (To my mind, the case against Israel is ex post facto refuted by the expulsion of the Mizrahim to Israel. I wonder if Helen Thomas knows that half the Jews in Israel are refugees from Moslem countries.)

    Not long ago, a lawsuit was filed in Australia attacking the terra nullius doctrine which is the basis of all land titles there; in effect claiming title to the whole country for the aborigines.

    In an era when that sort of thing is taken seriously, is it likely that Israel will not be a continual target of parallel claims?

  30. Rich Rostrom says:

    ** Oops. Repost with anchor tag closed. A preview button is needed… **

    Prof. Landes: I think you are overanalyzing here.

    There are two reinforcing factors here.

    The primary one is the Western adherence to principles of abstract justice over ties of blood or community. Rome’s first legendary hero was the co-founder of the Repbulic, Lucius Junius Brutus, who prosecuted his own sons for treason. Such a position would be unthinkable to an Arab. One of them might kill his son for betraying or dishonoring him, but never for a crime against others.

    The same principle applies to larger communities. Westerners criticize and condemn their elites with great freedom, and we salute those critics as heroes. This extends even to injuries done to outsiders. We praise (with good reason) those who pursue justice for others against their own kin or community. However, it’s got to the point it’s become the chief badge of honor and a fetish.

    The other factor is that the colonial empires were created to a great degree in contradiction of Western standards of justice. In the 20th century, the moralists triumphed, and the colonial powers gave up their occupation colonies.

    However, the settler colonies persisted.

    In the U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, the natives were few, were primitive, were displaced or absorbed or died. The new demographic and political order was beyond revision.

    But even so, colonial/settler guilt became a huge cultural factor. In U.S. discourse, acknowledgements of the Indians as the “true natives” are ubiquitous and casual. Also, exposing and to a degree redressing the wrongs done to natives became an important scholarly and political trend in all the settler countries.

    It even became a racket, as fictitious crimes were read into the accepted historical record. Vide Ward Churchill and Keith Windschuttle. Churchill made a lucrative career out of posing as an Indian and peddling fraudulent white-guilt scholarship. Windschuttle was excoriated by fellow Australian scholars for exploding the myth of genocide in Tasmania.

    But for all the aboriginal race-hustling, all these countries are permanently white (or at least non-native).

    South Africa was different. It was a settler colony where the settlers were a minority, keeping power by force. As such it was universally condemned, and eventually brought down.

    Now we come to the kernel in the nut.

    Israel was established as a settler colony.

    That was the goal of the Zionist movement. The Zionists chose Palestine for its historical connection, and because it was supposed to be almost empty. But it wasn’t.

    In 1922 there were 600,000 Moslems and 84,000 Jews in Palestine. Many Zionists assert that these Moslems were nearly all recent immigrants, attracted by the development work of the First and Second Aliyah. Some were. But in 1922, in the desolate Trans-Jordan region, untouched by Zionist works, there were 200,000 to 300,000 Moslems. The Moslem “base population” of Palestine was at least as great, i.e. far larger than the Jewish population, even after the Third Aliyah.

    The Labor Zionists hoped to finesse this by buying off Arab opposition. As Jabotinsky predicted, the Arabs weren’t for sale, and the issue was decided by war.

    Thus the creation of Israel can (arguably) be described as a “settler” takeover of the country from its previous inhabitants.

    Israel thus is heir to all the colonial and settler guilt of all the West: the de facto scapegoat for everything from the opium trade to the Trail of
    Tears to the Congo Free State.

    (To my mind, the case against Israel is ex post facto refuted by the expulsion of the Mizrahim to Israel. I wonder if Helen Thomas knows that half the Jews in Israel are refugees from Moslem countries.)

    Not long ago, a lawsuit was filed in Australia attacking the terra nullius doctrine which is the basis of all land titles there; in effect claiming title to the whole country for the aborigines.

    In an era when that sort of thing is taken seriously, is it likely that Israel will not be a continual target of parallel claims?

  31. incognito says:

    Debka?!Come on.

    You tend to dismiss it because it does not conform to your hopeful perspective.

    I, OTOH, am careful to qualify that source, but do not always dismiss it out of hand.

    What it describes is exactly what I would do if I were Iran and Turkey. And judging by the response of the west to it, there’s an outstanding invitation to do it.

    Now, it’s possible that they have not got the guts to do it. But that’s just a matter of time. Even if it is only a rumor, it’s a good tactic to further scare the west and make them beg.

  32. incognito says:

    Rostrom,

    Even if I agreed to your description of the creation of Israel — which I don’t, but am not gonna to repeat the history here — do you think for even one moment that this is the reason for the west’s anti-Israel stance?

    The west that (1) permitted the Nazis to massacre the jews, thus forcing the survivors out (b) returned the land to the jews in 40′s. How come that all of a sudden now they now declare Israel illegitimate? Any guess as to why now?

    Anyway, I don’t recall if it was you, but I had a exchange in the past here with somebody who made a similar argument and I asked him if he would apply the same conclusions to the US and red indians. The answer was no, without an explanation why.

    You’re rather cavalier with the “casual referencing in discussions” in the US about the “occupation” of its natives. Israel has done much more for the pals much more than the US did for its natives, yet the US is OK but Israel is not.

    Pls, give me a break.

  33. incognito says:

    In an era when that sort of thing is taken seriously, is it likely that Israel will not be a continual target of parallel claims?

    You are comparing “that sort of thing” with the treatment of Israel and the rank hypocrisy involved.

    Let’s be serious.

  34. Ray in Seattle says:

    Rich, It seems incorrect that you call Israel a settler colony – i.e. implying that it was a colonial undertaking. There was no Jew government paving the way with its military. There was a self-organized migration to a then stateless area where Jews had lived in some numbers for 3000 years through many attempt to expel them. There was no attempt to establish a Jewish government over the “natives”. Arab riots and murders of Jews often ignored by the British led to self-organization in self-defense but no attempt to set up a colonial government. That was the Brits role if you recall.

    Despite this up to the partition vote Jews were calling on Arabs to join in creating a civil government. This persisted even after the UN vote on partition – which was caused by a realization by UN members that Arabs would never live in peace with Jews who did not have credible state power and authority over them. Also, knowing (and specifying) that Israel would be a democracy that would respect the rights of an Arab minority.

    Comparing Jewish migration for protection against a vicious and uncaring world – to the US or Australian colonialism seems a real stretch – or worse. How can you possibly justify it?

  35. incognito says:

    Ray,

    Looks like no matter how many times the history of Israel is recounted and how much evidence is offered, the notion that “palestinian” land was stolen persists.

    It has something to do with the insistent and effective arab propaganda, the ignorance and lack of interest for serious self-education in the history and the collapse of the west.

    To reiterate: for all those reasons the world has decided that Israel is the biggest problem,because it is easier to scapegoat the jews than to kick islamist ass. That’s the reason evidence and reason does not count.

  36. incognito says:

    To all those who thought Obama to be brilliant:

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2010/06/026491.php

    God save all those who depend on this “brilliant” guy for foreign policy. This guy can recover America from the mess it’s in? Oy vey.

    Frankly, Obama is the leader this country deserves, for it has elected him despite him being a known nothing.

  37. incognito says:

    Recommended interview with Lee Smith author of THE STRONG HORSE (listen to audio at bottom)

    http://www.punditreview.com/2010/06/leesmith/

  38. incognito says:

    “We met with Abu Mazen a few weeks ago in the region and he asked us … if we would organize a meeting with the heads of the major Jewish organizations to have a frank conversation,” said Zvika Krieger, of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace, which Wexler heads.

    Now, what do you think he wants to talk to the jews about?

  39. Michelle Schatzman says:

    Stolen land : some was stolen, indeed, but after 1948, and as the result of a military victory, through the law that attributed the land of absentee arab owners to the Jewish National Fund.

    Between 1882 and 1948, the Jewish national fund (and some philanthropists) bought land from absentee owners. The peasants who worked on that land would usually rent the land and pay with part of their harvest. They would not have minded if the new owner had let them keep the arrangement. The problem came up because the new owner wanted to have Jews cultivate this land, and so threw the arab peasants out of their jobs.

    This created certainly a strong opposition to land acquisition by Jews in Palestine.

    Though expelling the farmers in this way was not particularly nice for them, it was completely legal.

    There is no sense denying this reality. In both cases, before and after 1948, there were good arguments on either side. After all, the land improvement works and the modernization of agricultural methods considerably increased the productivity and hence the wealth of the country. The arab countries betted against the jewish state in 1947-1949, and they lost. Turning the wheel back makes little sense, but what is striking now is that the part of agriculture in the israeli GNP is really very small, and land occupation is now more strategic than economic, and more so than it ever was.

    Maybe it is not nice to recognize it, but we can live with that, can’t we?

  40. E.G. says:

    incognito,

    I too consult Debka from time to time. On several issues, I found them either not reliable, or similar to other sources. A grain of salt may be less than what’s needed for their deliveries.
    (Of course their anxious tone is not my cup of tea, about the same as haha’aretz’s, but it’s not the reason I discount them)

  41. Michelle Schatzman says:

    Metula News Agency (http:www.menapress.org) is usually much better than Debka. Most of their articles are in french.

    They are not anxious more than necessary, they have journalists in Lebanon and in the West Bank – though of course, they use pseudonyms. I do not agree with some of the very rightist chaps who write there, but I believe that Mena is mostly well informed and much more reliable than debka.

    Incog, if you read in romanian and english, it is basically nothing to read news in french, you know… you’ve got most of the vocabulary and french is a romance language.

  42. Eliyahu says:

    Michelle, in the mid-19th century, the whole population of the country was estimated at about 250,000 to 300,000 persons. In the 1920s, and even today with a much greater total population between the Jordan and the sea, there is much open and unsettled land. So in many or most cases, the land bought and settled by Jews before and after WW I was unsettled, uncultivated land. Consider the coastal swamps, the Huleh swamps, the waste land of the Jordan Valley and Beyt Sh’an Valley, etc. Consider the northern Negev, wasteland then, desert then, now fruitful around Lakhish and Qiryat Gat, etc.

  43. Michelle Schatzman says:

    Eliyahu, there was unsettled land and settled land, I completely agree with you. In particular, the marshy land could not be settled, and draining the marshes was done by the zionist Jews.

    Unfortunately, I have no source for the respective part of settled and unsettled land.

    If I think of Zikhron Yaakov, where my grandfather arrived in 1882 at the age of 5, I know there was an arab village there, or close by before, and I do not know what happened to the inhabitants of that village.

  44. E.G. says:

    Michelle,

    Of course you know that Israel payed compensation for many absentee properties (some 2million $), and replaced about 60k Dunums of land. The rest of the claims are due to be resolved upon a peace treaty.
    So “stolen” is hardly the most appropriate word.

  45. E.G. says:

    Michelle,

    Who is Zichron Yaakov (and Benyamina, and a few other towns and villages) named after? Why?

  46. E.G. says:

    This settler/colon polemic is semantic. May I remind some that Jews settled in quite a few European lands for about 2000 years? Were they rightfully uprooted time and again from these colonies?

    Indeed, during the first Aliyas, the vocabulary used by the Pioneers (!) included terms such as Liberation of the Land (meaning mostly terrain, but the country was not absent from their minds). The Liberation was later nicely hijacked by the propaganda masters, who crafted the “Palestinian narrative” as a mirror image to the Jewish one.

  47. Somebody says above about DEBKAfile that a grain of salt is required. Why so? I find that their analyses are the closest to reality on the net and I use them all of the time. Nobody is correct all of the time but they are the closest.

    They have just placed on air a piece which deals with the reality THAT OBAMA IS BEHIND BOTH ERDOGAN AND AHMADINEJAD

    They do not say that exactly but I draw that from it.ç

    So what do you say now about US imperialism and what is the role of America in all of this.

    Is America setting out to destroy the Netanyahu Government.

    If so I say that Netanyahu must be defended unconditionally against America and have just so written.

    I represent http://www.4international.wordpress.com

    I wrote to Richard and asked him what is his source that Lenin ever used the term “useful idiots”, and if he did say it what was the context.

    And also I defend the history and actual record of Leon Trotsky towards the Jews, in the critical period of 1925 to 1940 when he was as you know murdered

    I have not read the above in enough detail but will but there seems in glancing over it much confusing of periods, and especially confusing revolutionary socialism with Stalinism, for example there is a reference to the “Soviets” in Afghanistan, when you mean Stalinism there.

  48. Michelle Schatzman says:

    E.G., I know who was Yaakov, but Zikhron Yaakov is the same kind of person as Piraeus…

    :-D

    Eliyahu and E.G.,
    Besides that, it is once again my crypto-yekke personality (no yekke ancesters, only some alsatians in the mess of pottage) that moves me to use direct words and look for precise data.

    60k dunums is not much : it is 60 square kilometers. I have no idea of how much land 2 million dollars could compensate for, when they were given over. Today, it seems nothing. If I multiply by, say, a factor of 100 to account for inflation, lack of infrastructure, lack of market interest, and so on, it is still not an enormous amount of money for large tracts of land.

    Anyway, sources?

    After a very leftist and remote past, I’ve got now some respect for property rights…

  49. incognito says:

    Though expelling the farmers in this way was not particularly nice for them, it was completely legal.

    Well, it was certainly much nicer that what the GOVT of the US did to the indians. Each time when one of these Rachel Corrie ignorant americans starts frothing at the mouse about Israel and I tell them “Israel will give the land to the pals when you give it back to indians” they shut up and go away and I got another enemy.

    There is no sense denying this reality.

    Nobody’s denying it, but relative to almost all other cases by others — and most nations today are not native if you go far enough into their past — it is not by far the worst, and yet it is the ONLY one that is being singled out by everybody. Projecting guilt?

    Incog, if you read in romanian and english, it is basically nothing to read news in french, you know… you’ve got most of the vocabulary and french is a romance language.

    Well, if you knew my name you would not be able to doubt that I know french. In fact I can read and understand it very well, it’s speaking that is hard, because I did not have many chances to speak it. But I don’t like the french (yes, I know that’s a generalization).

    Eliyahu, there was unsettled land and settled land, I completely agree with you. In particular, the marshy land could not be settled, and draining the marshes was done by the zionist Jews.

    Yes but the important point is that it was nothing like the arabs claim it was, it was legal, and much more acceptable than most other cases. IOW, that is not the reason the pal narrative is the way it is and the reason everybody’s against Israel. A partition was offered, they rejected it, started a war, ran away and lost, and even refused to accept the partition after their lost for 60 years, using violence instaed. The rest is conversation.

    There is only one major reason for this: Jews are dhimmis, sons of apes and pigs.

  50. incognito says:

    Felix, dear,

    You would not happen to be a Trotzkist by any chance?
    It’s fascinating to see those these days.

    I find Debka’s angle in the right place, but its predictions leave a lot to be desired. More often than not they don’t materialize.

    I would not be surprised if Obama, the organizer, has got it through his head that by appeasing Achtungmyjihad and Erdogan he will realign US, the weak poney, with the axis (the strong horse) and prevent the US’s descent into irrelevance. But chances are he does not have the capacity for such.

    My guess is that chances are he is simply in well over his head (as his handling of the oil spill shows) and that he appeases the bullies because he does not know what else to do and does not have the guts.

    I would not put it past him that he intended to put Israel in an untenable position in order to squeeze concessions out of it, but he has released in the process the jinni from the bottle and the US is in no position to put it back.

    The future looks bleak.

  51. incognito says:

    How would you call this other than collapse?

    Iran: Obama Makes It Easy for Us
    Noah Pollak
    http://www.commentarymagazine.com/blogs/index.php/pollak/310171

  52. incognito says:

    From Kosovo to Gaza
    Islamist radicals continue their efforts to penetrate every country where Muslims live.
    http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/kosovo-gaza

  53. incognito says:

    The post-west and it’s crying matter, not laughing:

    Worst Human-Rights Violators Condemn Israel. Your Laugh Here.
    Max Boot
    http://www.commentarymagazine.com/blogs/index.php/boot/309991

  54. incognito says:

    Looks like others agree with me that Obama is in over his head:

    Barack Obama, Voting Present in the Middle East
    Noah Pollak
    http://www.commentarymagazine.com/blogs/index.php/pollak/309811

    He messed everything up and he has no clue what to do now.

    It looks like he really believed that going around giving speeches is all he would have to do and everything would fall into place.

    It’s not gonna be pretty, this post pax-americana.

  55. incognito says:

    If true, I told you so.

    After eight months of back-breaking work, the American military engineers helping Egypt build a steel anti-smuggling wall along the strategic Philadelphi Route dividing Gaza from Sinai were suddenly recalled, debkafile’s military sources report – signaling the collapse of Egypt’s blockade of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. Washington thus abandoned its half-a-billion dollar investment in the joint Egyptian-Israeli siege project.
    Also Wednesday, June 9, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu again dispersed his inner cabinet without a decision after three days of chewing over various formats for an impartial probe of Israel’s commando raid of the Turkish-led blockade-busting flotilla of May 31.
    Washington’s insistence on attaching international “teeth” – and not just American observers – to the probe has stalled Israel’s acceptance. debkafile’s political sources report that for Netanyahu as well as the defense minister Ehud Barak who ordered and scripted the raid, acceptance of a broad international inquiry as demanded by the UN secretary general and Turkey would be suicidal in domestic political terms.
    Even full status for American panel members would for the first time give Washington a say in determining the political fate of the witnesses called, i.e. Netanyahu and Barak, first and foremost.

    What US president Barack Obama did this week was to go back to his confrontational posture against the Israeli prime minister, at the very moment that Israeli leaders had their backs to the wall against a worldwide onslaught over the flotilla incident orchestrated from Ankara and Tehran.
    Washington has now set its face on a new track: salvaging its ties with Turkey by burning the Netanyahu government. Gone is the well-publicized conciliatory rhetoric from the president, the vice president, secretary of state and chief of staff (who brought to his son to Jerusalem for his bar mitzvah) of the past few weeks.
    In the absence of an Israeli demand to focus the inquiry on Ankara’s “aid” flotilla project, it will not be hard to single out the culprits for taking the rap – Netanyahu as prime minister and therefore ultimately responsible, and his Defense Minister Barak, the solo performer.
    Barak asked no one before ordering chief of staff, Lt. Gen. Gaby Ashkenazi and the generals to go ahead with the raid of the six-vessel flotilla, after no more than a cursory word with the prime minister who was then visiting Canada. He did not put members of the security-political cabinet in the picture, or even Deputy Prime Minister Moshe Yaalon who was standing in for Netanyahu.
    All the same, none of the ministers are in a hurry to endorse a probe that might fatally destabilize the government they serve. debkafile’s Washington sources report that Obama administration is also delaying a decision in order to punish Netanyahu and please Erdogan. He also hopes to use the controversy over the inquiry as a lever to free Hamas (which is incidentally listed by the US as a terror group) of the Israeli blockade.
    Washington has already made its first move to that end by recalling the US army engineers building Egypt’s siege wall during Vice President Joe Biden’s talks with Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak at Sharm el Sheikh and meetings with officials in Cairo Tuesday and Wednesday, June 8-9.
    Reporting to the Vice President, the American engineers’ commanders and their Egyptian military colleagues painted a bleak picture of the troubles dogging their efforts to building a steel wall for blocking the arms-smuggling tunnels into Gaza. They reported they had thwarted at every turn by amas engineers, actively assisted by Iranian, Syrian and Hizballah experts, who had managed to infiltrate the Gaza Strip through the contraband tunnels. Hamas buried giant burners 18 meters below the surface of the sand to melt the steel wall’s foundations; its operatives then made off with the steel plates and used them to build their own fortifications.
    During his talks in Cairo, Biden decided to give up on that project as well as another in the planning stage: A huge pump and pipeline for flooding the tunnels with Mediterranean water. The Vice president and Egyptian officials ended up discussing re-opening the Gaza crossings for people and goods and using European and Egyptian monitors to filter out weapons and terrorists from shore stations.
    debkafile’s military sources report this plan harks back to the failed arrangements brokered by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in 2005 after Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip and which never worked. The European monitors fled their posts after Hamas and other radical Palestinian groups started shooting at them. The situation now is even more dangerous, because foreign monitors would have to contend additionally with the new al Qaeda cells which have since sprung up in the southern Gaza Strip.
    What Biden is proposing now is to virtually abandon US and Egyptian attempts to block the arms smuggling tunnels altogether – a proposal, debkafile’s military sources predict, will bring to an end the Israel-Egyptian blockade of Gaza and allow Hamas to resume its unfettered arms imports through those tunnels.
    In those circumstances, the pressure on Israel to end its sea blockade will be unrelenting. The Netanyahu government may have no option but to compromise by agreeing to let cargo ships, including Iranian vessels, through, with European monitors stationed on Gaza’s shore to inspect incoming freights.
    As recently as Sunday, Netanyahu vowed not to allow an Iranian port to be established in the Gaza Strip. By Wednesday, he looked as though he would have to eat his words.

  56. Eliyahu says:

    Incog, if all those horrid things that you are quoting about obama are true, then he isn’t stupid. It’s that you haven’t recognized his policy which of course is not his alone. Zbig is said to have come up with a Muslim policy by the time that Khomeini was sent back to Iran. The idea would be to build a Muslim bloc under US guidance. Such a bloc would be used against the USSR and other rival powers. The Soviets [Felix, I am just using the usual shorthand for the USSR bosses/leaders, not meaning the workers councils of 1917 long ago] walked into a trap in Afghanistan. Under Zbig’s leadership and with Saudi and US money [most Saudi money is also US money], Muslim anti-Soviet guerrillas were trained and equipped and armed by the USA. For whatever reason, these guerrillas were able to overcome or at least stalemate the Soviet troops. Having taken heavy losses, the USSR pulled out of A-stan, which they had once considered within the Soviet sphere. By the way, what I don’t understand is why the Soviets sent the spetznaz special forces to kill Najibullah [name?], the previous ruler of A-stan and collaborator with them.

    Anyhow, Incog, I see Obama as following the Zbig/Carter policy of 20 years ago. Towards Israel it is the John Foster Dulles/Eisenhower policy. Dulles too wanted to build a Muslim bloc under US leadership. Britain wanted to build a pan-Arab bloc [or single state?] in the Fertile Crescent in the 1940s, which explains Anthony Eden’s encouragement of the Arab League idea which the Arabs themselves were not all that keen about. We can go back to Stalin’s Appeal to the Muslim Toilers of Russia and the East of Nov or Dec 1917 which we may see as an effort to build a pro-Soviet Muslim bloc. Indeed, Kaiser Wilhelm portrayed himself as a Defender of Islam around 1900. See link for Stalin’s pro-Muslim manifesto and its convergence with UK policy:

    http://ziontruth.blogspot.com/2005/10/bolsheviks-for-jihad-genocide-stalins.html

    So all of the offensive things that Obama does [such as bowing down before the Saudi king or praising Helen Thomas or the Cairo speech, etc] plus his many anti-Israel, anti-Jewish actions are not stupid. There is a method to the madness. There is a policy. Not a good policy. But a policy. And it is not new but goes back in its present form to Zbig and Carter.

  57. Michelle Schatzman says:

    incog,

    why don’t you link to the debka file pages, instead of copying them?

    Besides that, incog, I know your name… you didn’t really hide it. Doesn’t your first name evoke a british socialist society and your last name coincide with that of a mathematician, physicist, mystic and philosopher who was as much interested in the theory of gambling as in mathematical machinery?

    Nevertheless, the name does not tell much, since names change across generations.

    You see, my point in trying to appreciate the reality of the land dispute is precisely to come up with an argument, which will prove that the land dispute is basically nothing. I believe that, whatever the height of compensation offered to palestinian refugees, they can’t accept, because their society will consider those who accept as traitors. Moreover, once again, the problem is with Jews having sovereignty in the middle of the Umma, preventing them from passing, say, from Irak to Morocco without crossing the accursed land of Israel. That is what pisses off most muslims who are pissed off about Israel. This is what I want to make clear. In order to make it clear that the land dispute is irrelevant, one has to talk about the land dispute.

    I am an adept of the judo method: let the weight of the adversary throw him (or her) to the ground, provided that he/she loses balance. In order to do that, we must not only know the weak points of the adversary, we must know ours.

  58. incognito says:

    Incog, if all those horrid things that you are quoting about obama are true, then he isn’t stupid.

    I DK why you and others insist that he is either horrid or stupid, but not both. He is horridly stupid and stupidly horrid. He is well in over his head and with cunning aggressive bullies and they are eating him alive while he thinks he’s in the game.

    The idea would be to build a Muslim bloc under US guidance. Such a bloc would be used against the USSR and other rival powers.

    I already proposed this myself. But he’s a fool if he believes that they will play this game with him. They are contemptuous of him and his weakness. They will not go against Russia because Russia is a strong horse, not a anemic poney like the US. Russia too will play him and China, who is funding America will to. They already do.

    Anyhow, Incog, I see Obama as following the Zbig/Carter policy of 20 years ago.

    No, it;s much worse. But even if that is true, then what other conclusion can be drawn other than stupidity? Was Carter smart or stupid for his policy?

    There is a method to the madness. There is a policy. Not a good policy. But a policy.

    I call bad policies stupid policies. He won’t succeed, he will be eaten alive. Isolating and screwing Israel is the easiest thing to do, but he won’t achieve anything beyond that. All he does is collapsing America and turning it irrelevant and a laughing stock.

  59. incognito says:

    It seems to me that because he does bad things intentionally you think he’s not stupid. But
    having a method does not absolve him of stupidity.

    It all depends on whether the method is effective and/or if is in the interest of the US.

    Judging by the results up to date he is stupid big time.

  60. obsy says:

    As for Turkish human rights violations, I would like to mention the often overlooked Sivas massacre.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sivas_massacre

    Videos may be available at youtube.

    A huge mob burned down an hotel where some Alevi met at the time. They successfully blocked firefighters and I think that I remember that the police even helped the mob. A lot more than 9 people died and those where probably really peaceful.

    Something somewhat similar happened in Germany (Rostock-Lichtenhagen) after the reunion.

  61. E.G. says:

    Geveret Ramamitkalit,

    You’re not Yekke enough.
    The Rothschilds (Jacob-Yaakov; Benjamin–> Benyamina… etc.) are of true Yekke descent. And le Baron (by then très French, yet no less Yekke) duly bought each and every inch of those land parcels. And that family was only one of the buyers.
    So unless you want to engage in a Protocols-style cabal, better check your facts before posting “stolen” nonsense.

    Regarding monetary and land compensations by the Israeli Govt., I’d say it goes beyond the symbolic gesture, and far beyond the reciprocity of Arab Govts. The issue is not resolved however, pending at least one peace treaty.
    At any rate, on the compensation issue Israel is not behind (quite the contrary) any European state. Much looted Jewish property in those lands has not (yet?) been recovered or compensated.

  62. Michelle Schatzman says:

    E.G.,

    I am asking for correct sources. Before 1948, there was *no* stolen land, this is clear. The only thing I mentioned is peasants paying a crop rent to absentee owners and losing this possibility when land was worked by Jews.

    The only “stealing” issue is after 1948, this is pretty clear. There are lots of empty or almost empty villages, whose land has been worked by kibbutzim and moshavim, or planted with trees.

    I am certainly not trying to say that Israel is the bad guy, but to call things by their names. I am quite convinced that Israel could not let the land lay fallow, or pay rent to absentee owners, while it had to integrate so many immigrants (and very poor immigrants). No one would seriously argue that getting crops from abandoned land for hungry people is a terrible sin, on the contrary.

    There is a big palestinian discourse about the stolen land, which was a sea of wheat, a immense orange grove, and so on. This is obviously a legend. It has to be debunked : the return of refugees inside the green line is something that cannot be accepted by Israel, however, demagogues (or demopaths) love to sing so much about that dream.

    In order to debunk the dream, one has to say clear things. No censorship is helpful.

    My idea is that damage must be compensated. In the end, it is possible that the damage suffered by Palestinian refugees would require the same order of magnitude for compensation as the damage suffered by the Jews from Arab countries.

    The trick is that arguments from the palestinians evolve. We can’t always give the same answer to their arguments. And yes, some people argue just in order to hear the sound of their own voice – but they are not interested in someone else’s voice.

    ֿאף ֶעל פי חן

    In fact, I had never heard about compensation until today, and I’d like to know more. So : sources, sources, sources…

  63. incognito says:

    Hungary: Moving Back to a Fascist Future?
    http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/137968

  64. E.G. says:

    Michelle,

    Abandoned property is not stolen property: the fact that there is a state custodian authority is the best proof. So the first source is — the state (MFA site, I think). Also, that for Israel, compensation is (and has always been) an issue on the peace treaty agenda.

    I’m not sure about the magnitude equivalence between the value of Jewish confiscated goods (and, as far as I know, never evaluated by the confiscating authorities) and Arab abandoned ones.

    As much as I don’t doubt the existence of those famous orange groves near, say, Jaffa, I also know they were not very extended (if only because the land turns sandy rather nearby) and — who was the plots’ owner? Some were privately owned (like 2 still bare plots in the centre/north of Tel Aviv), others were “merely” leased…

    Just to show Israel’s good faith about his kind of issue, did you know that compensation for Templar property abandoned before and during WW2 (some of them were Nazis; exchanged/transferred against German Jews) was included in the Israeli-German compensations accord?

  65. Rich Rostrom says:

    34 Ray in Seattle: “Rich, It seems incorrect that you call Israel a settler colony – i.e. implying that it was a colonial undertaking.”

    I’m not implying it, I’m stating it.

    “There was no Jew government paving the way with its military.”

    There no is requirement that a colony have government sponsorship or military protection. Note the “Amana Colonies” in Iowa, or “Swiss Colony” in Wisconsin. Or the term “artists’ colony”. A colony is a coherent expatriate community. The Zionist goal was for large numbers of Jews to migrate to Palestine, become the population of the country, and form a Jewish society. I call that a settler colony. What would you call it?

    “Comparing Jewish migration for protection against a vicious and uncaring world – to the US or Australian colonialism seems a real stretch.”

    The Quakers, Puritans, and Pilgrims all settled in the New World to escape persecution. The Mormons settled in Utah for the same reason.

    Besides, even some of Israel’s defenders make the analogy. See 49 above: Incognito writes that he tells Israel-haters “Israel will give the land to the pals when you give it back to indians”.

    In any case, the parallel is not the reasons, but the effect: incomers who occupy a territory and become its population, displacing or dominating any previous inhabitants.

  66. E.G. says:

    Rich Rostrom,

    Could you please clarify your argument? I’m having difficulties to get your point.

  67. E.G. says:

    Michelle,

    Just saw this (not yet translated into English)
    http://www.ynet.co.il/articles/0,7340,L-3902768,00.html

    43 (European?) states agree on rules to restore/refund Jewish property stolen by the Nazis during the Holocaust.
    A 2007 study found that pre-Shoah Jewish property in Europe is estimated between 10 and 15 $milliards. Most of it was confiscated and never returned or compensated.

    Shall we live to see anything similar with Moslem countries?

  68. Steven Karmi says:

    Vanguard intellectuals wallow in irony and other intellectual gymnastics so as to distinguish themselves from the rabble and the merely intelligent. Jews become Nazis; Israel becomes a ghetto–or ghettoizes its minorities /neighbors; victims of genocide become genocidal maniacs; etc. Its all rubbish fueled further by phantasies of social sciences dilletantes. Simply: radicals desire oblivion and Israel resists!

  69. Eliyahu

    Thanks for your courtesy

    I take it that this discussion is in no way academic but will govern what people do here.

    Aesop´s Fable of the oxen and the butcher springs to mind here.

    Debka may be wrong sometimes, but as Incognito says it is the method that is valuable

    I see Obama as the enemy, as I did Cheney when he proposed a Palestine state back in 1989, see http://www.tenc.net, this is sourced there

    As did Bush propose in last years.

    And indeed it is wrong to call your enemy an idiot

    On another level…the George Galloways etc are not as stong as appears.

    For historical reasons which I do not want to deal with here because it is a huge subject…there is no true socialist revolutionary leadership in existence…just one, and it is small http://www.4international.wordpress.com, with whatever practice it is possible to organize.

    In reference to Aesop a United Front is advisable. Not to be confused with Popular Frontism.

    Do not be put off by terms, these are historical and have precise historical and contemporary meaning..

  70. Somebody asked if I was a “Trotskyist” well I am not an “ist”c anything, because that may infer dogma, and the least thing that Trotsky was was a dogmatist, yet there is such a thing as acquired knowledge, and theory is passed on

    The Trotskyist position as based on his defence of the Jews and clear promotion of a Jewish state is ours and it is unique.

    Unconditional defence of Israel and the Netanyahu Government. But also and inside this defence full freedom to criticise.

    The real issue is the same as the way that Israeli politicians hoodwinked themselves leading in to OSLO

    This is the real course of events, from Gili, as presented by Richard Landes:

    From someone with long experience planning “operations.”
    • The preparation could not have been worse. Rather than thinking through the matter from the perspective of the opponent, they expected far less resistance than they got, and they played into the hands of the boat militants.
    • They should have approached with a boarding party from the sea (which they also did), but also gunmen with rubber bullets on higher boats who could keep the gangs on board at a distance. Instead those boarding from the sea couldn’t board.
    They went so far out into international waters because they didn’t want the boarding to happen in daytime when there would be cameras. In fact, the lack of footage of the violence against the IDF is hurting Israel.
    • They had paint guns because they were expecting possible light resistance; and pistols which they weren’t authorized to use unless “necessary” – which took at least 10, by some accounts 40 minutes.
    • This was not an operation for soldiers, but rather units from the SWAT Police, who have more experience with this kind of resistance, than Navy Commandos. But because it was beyond territorial bounds, the Police had no jurisdiction.
    • They could have just disabled the boat by jamming to the propeller and rudder.
    Now some of this may be Monday morning quarterbacking. But what is crystal clear now to those not blinded by the “human rights” halo that these groups claimed, and the MSNM adopted, is that this was an ambush. On one level, if Israel had anticipated it, they would have been accused (as they are now, but with no real substance) of provoking the confrontation – of coming in with guns blazing. On another, the lack of preparation for really violent aggression – street fighting if you will – has to surprise anyone paying attention to the chants and swagger of those on the Mavi Marmara.
    The real key is to understand the politics of Barak, that is the man who is so trusting of Arab Fatah and PLO intentions that at Camp David he gave everything to Arafat, to leave only a stunted Israeli stated hemmed in on the Med with Arab Palestinian guns staring down their throats from the Heights of Judea, never mind that Judea is the historical home of the Jews, as Kosovo is of the Serbs, in both cases their historical soul. The person who trusts his enemy is inherently bankrupt in the field of political science.

    The second key is that Netanyahu is basically a fool. Netanyahu trusted another fool, Barak, and placed him in charge of the key portfolio, Defence.

    He did this as a political manouvre and not as a reasoned judgment based on tactics.

    The mess that Netanyahu has made of Israeli defence is not concluded there. Not only did he place Barak in charge it now emerges that Barak consulted no other member of the Government in the planning of this action, everything was done by himself.

    He obviously is an incompetent fool as even Gili shows, I presume just using common sense.

    The first requirement for Barak, the great military strategist, could have been to tune in to the bloody radio and watch the pics from television.

    There was evidence that these desparadoes on the boat were roaring Islamist slogans and showed all the signs of being antisemites who had a distinct interest in killing Jews.

    So at best Barak is out of touch. There must be a million people among Israeli Jews who could have done a better job by far than Barak.

    Then what the hell was Netanyahu doing swanning around in Canada at the time this was all going down. Most of all his plans to swan down to Washington, him and his entourage of flunkeys, to visit the greatest enemy the Jews have ever had since Goebbles, and the stage is set for one of the worst ever blows to be struck against Israel.

    This is a fearful ruling Jewish class in Israel.

    Gili is damned right. This fear and sneakiness is demonstrated in their timing. They wanted it at night because they feared the pictures of Al Jazeera!

    So they did not get the nature of this war, that it is a war of psychology, of people´s perceptions.

    This same quality, this fearful sneakiness, was exemplified by Israpundit, and I presume by others in the Diaspora. This out of touch totally Ted Belman decided not to follow the events in the weeks beforehand until it exploded around his oh so righteous Jewish ears he had nothing to report.

    But the antisemites were building and working for months beforehand and all Belman had to do was tune in to the centre of the spiders web, the Palestine Solidarity campaign in Ireland, to see the great dangers and trap being set for Israel. Head in the clouds Belman could not do a basic thing like that.

    Conclusion: If the Jewish leadership inside is in a bad way, the Jewish leadership in the Diaspora is a total crock of ….!

    From months ago the spotlight should have been shining brightly on the IHH, tracing back to the connections being made by George Galloway with these antisemites on his Viva Palestina convoy, which was to form the basis for the Flotilla of Hate.

    Then after shining the torch of reason on the IHH every event had to be broadcast not only by the Netanyahu Government and the IDF, but also and perhaps even more so by a United Diaspora, which includes 4international, a trotskyist organization with nary a Jew in sight (got the point there, the jews have to reach out)

    On this latter point i can only give my own personal experience. The most traitorous Jew, that is traitorous to Israel, is a jewish man from Dublin, a capitañlist Media character, who makes a big point of telling people that he is a jew and an observant one at that. Remember De Valera, was Dev not a very religious catholic Irish nationalist, and Dev did irish nationalism no favours, did he!!!

    But anyway back tot he Flotilla of Hate. The real reason netanyahu was in Canada, and barak was incharge of the kitchen,lies in the compromise which Netanyahu made after the last election totally vanquished this snake Livni, and prepared the basis for a real opening up of the Israeli revolutionary social and religious politics. Netanyahu was in canada because he is `playing with politics. His bourgeois perceptions merans that he is totally under the sway of international opinion. Netanyahu cares what others think of Israel. His concerns are with what the EU, UN, Obama, britain, Russia etc think.

    This is the tragedy. It does not matter at all what these think because the vast majority of the people in all of those countries have their own battles with these leaders, and they can be won to the side of Israel.

    For that to happen we need a new leadership in Israel and in the Diaspora

    • Pinpoint the central role of Islam
    • Prove that Obama is backing Islam and is sacrificing the Jews. Cut through the double talk of the Obama and Bush administrations
    • Resist the idea that this is an Obama thing. This is a product of a total system which is in crisis, a crisis which is as deep as 1929, with dangers of Fascism inherent
    • Also resist the idea that this alliance with Islam has happened before. It has. But every situation is new and different. The last alliance was between the Nazis and Muslim Brotherhood in the Holocaust
    • Expose the IHH
    • Expose Galloway
    • Expose Mairead Maguire

    These are not the whole story but they would be a start. At least a start would be made.

    In the Diaspora we need to create a United Front of organizations to defend Israel and the only requirement (KIS) is that there is freedom of discussion inside, and that all claims are based on fact, verifiable fact

    Consequently we as a Trotskyist organization welcome criticism but only if based on fact. Hence did Lenin use the phrase useful idiots, and why mix leninism up with Stalinism, and why in discussing Stalinism ignore Leon Trotsky.

    We need the truth about the formation of the Arab population in Palestine, most were opportunist interlopers, many from Syria. We need to deal with so many lies.

    That can certainly done, but it needs organization, unity and discipline

    But how to if you produce a whole set of other lies in the sphere of Russian revolutionary politics. That has to be dealt with historically and truthfully just as much. If people cannot do that, for example if they do not know and are just chancing their arm, then why not keep your mouth shut.

    Of immediate importance in Israel is to create a united front with Netanyahu to defend Netanyahu and his government against the predatory Obama and his Government of Israel and essentially Jew haters.

    The Jewish religious fanatics and their absurd hatred (and by the very nature of it irrational) for Netanyahu must if they are to consider themselves as jewish and Israeli patriots curb this hatred and learn the lesson of the oxen facing the butcher, as told by Leon Trotsky in reference to the Stalinists and Social Democrats who refused to unite in front of Hitlers nazis, but the same applies now in relation to these oh so religious Jews in the face of Obama´s head on attack on Netanyahu

    I am emphasising this issue rather much. There must above all be a defence of Netanyahu. Why? Because it is through the destruction of netanyahu that Obama and his team, which contains many traitor Jews, that Obama move on to have Livni probably with barak back in power.

    This is a little like happened in Serbia where with the help of George Soros money and propaganda machine that after years of vilification Milosevic eventually was arrested, in the process the constitution being torn up by Serb traitors.

    Could there be a time when Israeli leaders are taken to the Hague with the connivance of Livni? Entirely possible.

    But to defend Netanyahu does not entail inability or unwillingness to criticise netanyahu.

    We are talking here about successful strategy, from which correct tactics can be drawn.

    The strategy of united front action is just that and it is urgent.

    As I said this discussion is not academic but has to lead to practice

  71. Incognito

    I welcome the reference you made to the state of Trotskyism today. Has there ever in history been such a situation, where the one hope for the socialist revolution has turned into what these groups now represent. And it is little comfort to call them traitors to trotskyism etc because they are loudly calling the name of Trotsky down to back up their work.

    Please friend try to understand. It seems to me that the forces of reactionary Islam on the issue of Palestinianism, this new almost religion, are quite aware that they base it all on the ignorance of the vast majority of the population in every country.

    You all know how history is taught (not) in our schools

    This appalling lack of culture is what the Islamists rely on.

    Same with these groups you mention, eg wsws, swp etc.

    One I wrote up on 2 days ago on

    http://4international.wordpress.com/2010/06/08/matgamma-and-workers-liberty-join-with-the-antisemites/

    The road ahead is rocky and the question really is what can the youth do

    because the actual history needs to be studied, especially the real role of Stalinism inside the workers movement, and that requires as always energy

    Which is why it is so hurtful to see intelligent people not dealing with the problems historically, in a seriously scientific historical manner

  72. I wish to clarify a point.

    In reference to the alliances of Islam with the nazis etc

    I was making the point that that is good to do this, but not mechanicallyç

    We have to study in its living reality and concrete detail the nature of the present alliances being made, and for example the very important work of bat yeor has to be factored in

    back to the question of the defence of netanyahu and in Israel and the Diaspora this is the key issue

    The whole essay by leon Trotsky is worth study because it is an effort to understand the then new phenomenon of Fascism

    But this is the part of the fable

    From What Next? Vital Question for the German Proletariat, 1932
    * * *
    A cattle dealer once drove some bulls to the slaughterhouse. And the butcher came night with his sharp knife.

    “Let us close ranks and jack up this executioner on our horns,” suggested one of the bulls.

    “If you please, in what way is the butcher any worse than the dealer who drove us hither with his cudgel?” replied the bulls, who had received their political education in Manuilsky’s institute. [The Comintern.]

    “But we shall be able to attend to the dealer as well afterwards!”

    “Nothing doing,” replied the bulls firm in their principles, to the counselor. “You are trying, from the left, to shield our enemies — you are a social-butcher yourself.”

    And they refused to close ranks.

  73. E.G. says:

    Felix Quigley,

    Could you please post the link to good old Bronstein’s lesson on oxen facing the butcher?

  74. E.G. says:

    Oh, you just did! Thanks!

  75. Cynic says:

    Rich,

    The Quakers, Puritans, and Pilgrims all settled in the New World to escape persecution. The Mormons settled in Utah for the same reason.

    But they were Christians and didn’t have to contend with things like the Evian Conference for example.
    Looking back at history you will find that those Jews who fled to the new world to ward off persecution were followed and persecuted again so much so that those Jews who landed in northern Brasil then fled to what was known as New Amsterdam (Manhattan).

  76. Passionate Intensity…

    The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity. The Second Coming — William Butler Yeats In the aftermath of the Turkish inspired Gaza “Humanitarian” incident, Israel has been attacked with a frenzied passion not seen…

  77. incognito says:

    I am sorry, but I will invest not one second of my time on Trotzky (about which I just read a biography), whether he defended the Jews or Israel or not. Period. Neither will I read long lectures in an exchange thread (lack of succinctness is an intellectual deficiency).

  78. incognito says:

    Cynic,

    Rostrom has a very selective perspective when analyzing history depending on whether it’s the jews in Israel or eveybody else.

  79. E.G. says:

    incognito,

    Come on, I thoroughly enjoyed Bronstein’s take on Esop’s fable.
    Who’d have thought an adherent to his theory and analysis would come up with what Felix posted?

    The dialectic ways may be impenetrable but they’re surely surprising. And even more so as Trotskyst political parties are currently in bed with Islamists.

  80. E.G. says:

    p.s. Parts of Felix’s posts have Jabotinskyst resonances.

  81. EG

    Very perceptive.

    Jabotinsky was in every way terrific. He was a Jewish patriot, certainly capitalist in ideology but cultured and a fighter for his people, a little I suppose like Collins as opposed to De Valera.

    A time for keeping minds open.

    The big enemy of progress is dogma, and there was a dogma in the Lenin group that if Jews “joined in” assimilated in other words that there would be a future. They were dead against antisemitism and also remember the Whites in the Civil War became a component in Nazism

    But that was a real betrayal right there and then. They should have seen the Jews as a nation, and understood the significance of Zion. But often it takes time to see…

    I do not want to put our friend off his dinner by going on.

    Just that the study by Trotsky of Fascism (probably from the 20s right to his death in 1940) meant he was also changing his position on Jews as a nation, and definitely opposing assimilation

    I will not go on

    But I very much appreciate all of your comments really.

    I am not pessimistic at all about the future and I wish you all well

    Some great contributions, including the work done on the position of the Arab peasant situation and their losing their role in their oppressed and meagre life, which was worth studying

  82. E.G. says:

    Felix,

    Please drop by again, all the more when you have more Leonic pearls to contribute.

    Shabbat Shalom!

  83. incognito says:

    I think people interpret the conflict between Lenin and Trotzky as the latter being better than the former, less dogmatic and more democratic. I think this is delusion and their differences were within the same dogma. When he was in the system he did not do anything to suggest he was any different, at the core, from Lenin, regardless of how the overanalysis of his writings are trying to put a different face on him.
    End of topic.

    Jabotisnky is another matter. He had flaws like any leader, but I would not compare him with Leon.

  84. E.G. says:

    incognito,

    Let me assure you, I have no (five years) plan of conversion, and am sufficiently aware of Lev’s Human actions. And undeniably intelligent.

    :-D

  85. E.G. says:

    I meant Lev’s undeniable intelligence.

  86. incognito says:

    Let me assure you, I have no (five years) plan of conversion and am sufficiently aware of Lev’s Human actions.

    I am unaware of anything that I said even implying that.
    I hope you meant inhuman, though, right?

    And undeniably intelligent

    Not sufficiently intelligent to see the flaws in the dogma and its implications.

    Anyway, an intelligent red-fascist is more dangerous than an unintelligent one.

  87. incognito says:

    Who are you referring to? I was referring to Leon.

  88. E.G. says:

    Me too.
    Seen the link?

  89. incognito says:

    Yes. And Leon was HUMAN?

  90. E.G. says:

    About as Human and fair and balanced as HRW or the UN or the Beeb is now :-/
    And as right as the angle of the Guillotine too!

  91. incognito says:

    That definition of human is a strange one, but if that’s what you used I agree.

  92. E.G. says:

    Yes, we live in an Orwellian world.

  93. Eliyahu says:

    Starting with Trotsky: He gave an interview to the New York Forward [Forverts] in Yiddish in 1937 from his exile in Mexico. I made a translation for myself but have misplaced it. However, in this interview he softened his attitude toward Zionism. Joseph Nedava quotes from it in his: Trotsky and the Jews [Philadelphia: JPS 1971]. So Felix is right on that score. Trotsky admitted that he had not understood the problems of the Jews earlier in his life.

    In those days, Stalinists & Trotskyists both demanded loyalty to the interest of the working class, which each interpreted in its own way. Today, the so-called “Left” barely thinks of the working class or workers. Nobody gives a damn about the 10 to 15 million foreign workers in saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf states who have few rights, are often cheated of their pay, live in appalling conditions, etc etc. Of course, they can’t think about those workers or about the victims of genocide in Sudan. If they thought about those victims, then it would distract them from the Real Enemy, the Zionist, the Jew, or whatever they call us this week.

    On account of its obsessive focus on Israel and Israel’s alleged misdeeds, most of the “Left” today can be considered Judeophobic in the sense of antisemitism. As some of the Christian Socialists were in the first half of the 20th century. Can the “Left” be called authentically Left when it shows no or little concern for the most exploited workers?? Can it be considered sane when they –some of them– claim that Israel is the keystone of the whole world capitalist-imperialist system without which the whole system would collapse? [NB: this claim is also Judeophobic]. How about the funding of pro-Arab, anti-Israel NGOs by the EU and various EU member states separately? Maybe the anti-Israel movement is red in the sense of being a red herring. Maybe it is collective insanity of “right” and “left” and “center” in the West.

    Note: a purported English version of Trotsky’s interview was published in Fourth International, December 1945. In my view, this version is neither complete nor accurate. It does not match the Yiddish version.

  94. Eliyahu says:

    Rich Rostrom, I think that you are playing games with the word “colony.” The word can mean several different things. My Latin dictionary [Follett World Wide] gives several meanings for colonus: “farmer, settler, tiller of the soil, sharecropper, tenant farmer; colonist, planter, (Poet.) inhabitant, dweller, resident.” Colonia is defined as “country estate, farm; tillage, acreage; dwelling, residence; plantation, settlement, colony…”

    So there was an Amana colony [self-described] and San Francisco can be said to have a French colony, likewise New York and Philadlephia can be said to have French colonies. And Jerusalem had a “German colony” and a “Greek colony” going back into the 19th century.

    But the word colony in the now pejorative sense is a product of a colonialist policy, of a govt, particularly an empire. Virginia was founded as an English colony, likewise New England and Maryland and Pennsylvania were all English colonies connected to English govt policies and/or royal charters. The king of England gave the Quaker William Penn a charter [or grant?] to take over the land that later was called Pennsylvania.

    Jews have lived in the Land of Israel for thousands of years, continuing to do so after the crushing of the three major Jewish revolts against the Roman empire: circa 70 CE, circa 118 CE, & 132-135 CE. Eusebios writes that the Romans forbid Jews to live in the area around Jerusalem [which Hadrian called "Aelia Capitolina" after crushing the Bar Kokhba Revolt [135 CE]. This Aelia Capitolina, named after Hadrian’s gens or clan, was a colonia and a polis, comprising not only the area of the city of Jerusalem but considerable surrounding territory. Hadrian did this at about the same time that he changed the name of the province where Jerusalem was located from Judea [IVDAEA] to Syria Palaestina [ca. 135 CE]. Note that Jerusalem too was designated a colonia, one where Jews were forbidden to live according to Eusebios.

    Since then, Jews have always lived in the country although Jerusalem was forbidden to them at different times. The Crusaders massacred Jews there in 1099 and then excluded Jews from the city, although they later softened their policy. Indeed, Crusaders massacred very many –if not most– of the Jews in the country in their first dozen years in control of the country.

    Jews have always believed that they had the right to come back and eventually to rule the land [although the religious would add, if it is God's will, etc]. Jews were already the majority in Jerusalem in the mid-19th century while the land was still under Ottoman rule, which meant rule by a Sunni Muslim state with Turkish, Arab, and other nationality Muslim officials.

    It is true that the League of Nations assigned Israel as the Jewish National Home to the UK to administer and to foster the Jewish National Home. So there we have an empire or empires assigning Israel to the Jews as their National Home, in recognition of the ancient history of the land and of the Jews. Nevertheless, in fact Britain undermined the Jewish National Home principle and favored the Arabs. This was especially true starting in 1939 with the “palestine White Paper,” which essentially nullified the Jewish National Home, while excluding Jewish refugees who needed a refuge from Hitler.

    In other words, despite its promises, Britain opposed and undermined its own commitment to the Jewish National Home. Therefore the National Home was NOT a British imperial or colonialist project except a few years. On the other hand, the UK favored Arab nationalism going back to at least 1920.

  95. incognito says:

    Eliyahu,

    I would be very surprised if Rostrom has really any interest in any colonies other than jewish ones. Ditto for the rest of the world.

  96. incognito says:

    I mean, think about it: most of the countries in the world live on land which is not native — at some point in their history they took over from natives.

    What better way to distract yourself from your own past than by accusing only Israel of the same?

    What would the world do without Israel? They would have had to invent so that they all have whom to accuse.

  97. Independent Observer says:

    Richard, you will find excellent supportive arguments for your viewpoint in the “anti-third-worldism” works of the Venezuelan journalist Carlos rangel (for example, “Third World Ideology and Western Reality: Manufacturing Political Myth”).

  98. E.G. says:

    Eliyahu,

    I hope you find the Trotsky Forverts piece. When you do, please post it.
    Thanks in advance!

  99. E.G.

    I have just noticed this extra posting by Eliyau and would like this post to be kept open as the issues raised are great, since they touch on the very central pillar of reaction today, which is the role of this new and I argue Fascist type Left. But that side of things go together with somebody who on Israpundit quoted the Black Book of Communism to me a few months ago, and who also made a great joke about the axe which Mercader used to murder trotsky. And so on…ad infinitum

    The lady who travelled across to talk to Trotsky was a left Zionist. Except you are driven by hateful dogma as some here are that interview is moving

    Trotsky was moving rapidly on this issue I am certain of that. I see his view then as not the finished article but in transition

    What happened afterwards may be found in what happened before, Trotsky had already been in a great struggle with the leadership of the SWP in America.

    Richard as with all things in life the defence of Trotsky was a practical matter too and the SWP let him down, in that Mercader stank to high heaven. He should not have got to within a 100 miles of Trotsky least of all alone in that study, but he came through the New York office of the SWP, in which Sylvia Franklin directed affairs, and she was an agent of Stalin.

    Richard you say above today that this flotilla issue may be a turning point. I do not think so because it too is a practical matter and the Jewish movement from an organizational standpoint is really awful, the only thing of merit I have seen is ZStreet, and I liked your effort on Video re Hamas not actually accepting the aid.

    Life is practical.

    And i want to build a Trotskyist organization and i do not want to write clever treatises.

    Johanson’s Lucy was not a deep thinker, but she was active!

    I like American humour and in Johanson’s book (Lucy) (which I lent and did not get back…an example of poor practice) one of the guys in the field said that if there was a MacDonalds over there you want to see her scarper.

    Not a great brain but she was practical.

  100. E.G.

    There is a guy, I think Australian, who is behind “Mailstar” and i am loath to quote hime, as since he has become very dangerous

    But you must understand that these lefts of today do 2 things

    1. they hide the roleof Hajj Amin el Husseini

    2. they hide this support of Trotsky for the comint Jewish state

    the contrast with Jabotinski. He could not match the analyses that trotsky was making in a very deep and multi faceted way on Fascism. Not that Trotsky was not emotional too.

    This is the great value of the interview Elanayu refers to.

    I once played this to some Jews on Israpundit. They were spo caught up in communist hatred they would not listen to it. they were Americans mainly. of a certain age.

    “Trotsky still did not concede that the Jewish question could be solved within the framework of the capitalist system; but assimilation, as a kind of self-regulating process which might have taken care of the problem over an extended period of time, could no longer be relied upon; its pace was not speedy enough to cope with the appearance of such radically destructive movements as nazism. Palliatives, therefore, had to be sought, and Trotsky was driven to admit the existence of one of them – territorialism. “The Jews of different countries,” he said, “have created their press and developed the Yiddish language as an instrument adapted to modern culture. One must therefore reckon with the fact that the Jewish nation will maintain itself for an entire epoch to come.” The admission of the existence of a “Jewish nation” was a weird recantation on the part of Trotsky, unless it was a mere semantic slip of the tongue.

    An example from Mailstar

    Also this extract (her name was Biba Edelson, and I traced her once on google and she was to become some kind of lower minister under Golda Meir i think):

    I told him who I was, and that at the time I had been expelled from Russia as a Zionist-Socialist. If he was interested, I would tell him about our life in Palestine. Trotsky got up from his chair, asked me to wait awhile, and soon returned with his wife. He introduced me to her and asked me to tell him everything. He wanted to know about Palestine and was happy to hear a report from a person living there.

    I talked to him not as one talks to a stranger. A feeling accompanied me all the time that he was a Jew, a wandering Jew, without a fatherland. This brought me closer to him, aroused in me confidence that my story was addressed to a man who was able to understand. I interrupted my story several times, asking him whether he was sure he had the time to listen to me, and he urged me to continue, jotted down some points, and then began to question me: How many Jews are there in Palestine? Where do they reside; is it only in towns? He asked numerous questions about the kibbutzim …

    As I said I am really loath to use this mailstar

    but the url anyway is

    http://mailstar.net/lenin-trotsky.html

    I want to write our own stuff and separate from this guy

    But the Fascist lefts, and the pro imperialists, are worse, they have actively hidden all of this material

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