Tariq Ali condemns socialism

…..A unanimous Senate vote is rare, so what explains being more loyal to
Israel…. An important factor is undoubtedly money..
…Few British citizens are aware of the role their own country played
in creating this mess…..It was not by accident, but by design that the British decided to
create a new state….. 

Well in all fairness, Ali Sahab condemns not so much socialism but “techno-fascist” socialists like Bernie Sanders of Vermont who are “progressive on everything except Israel.” 

It is clear that TA shares the same world-view as Imran Khan (note: TA is a devoted fan of IK), whereby the only reason that the Arab/Muslim empire of old has not recovered is due to malicious designs by a scheming West which dances to the tune of evil Zionists. Jews are so powerful that they are even able to manipulate Western elections in favor of Zionist politicans. 

Over the last few decades, Hindus and Muslims have been kicked out of their native lands in South Asia. The Muslim population has recovered in India (but is under threat), while Hindus are now extinct in Pakistan and under threat in Bangladesh. Now it is the turn of the Christians and Muslim sects in the MENA to be wiped out. Muslims are also being cleansed from Burma and are under threat in Sri Lanka. All of this is part of a grand Western-Zionist plot to destabilize Arabs/Muslims? Really???
The US Senate votes unanimously to defend Israel including Senator
Bernie Sanders of Vermont. I don’t think he did it for the money. He
is a paid-up member of POEEI (‘Progressive on Everything Except
Israel’ and pronounced pooee) the liberal segment of US society, which
is not progressive on many things, including Israel.

Take, as one example, the case of  ‘Colonel’ Sanders. I thought my
late friend Alexander Cockburn was sometimes too harsh on Sanders, but I
was wrong. Sanders has been arselickin bad for a long time now as
Thomas Naylor informed us while exploding the myths surrounding the
Senator in a CounterPunch piece in September 2011:

“Although Sanders may have once been a socialist back in the 80s when
he was Mayor of Burlington, today, a socialist he is not.  Rather
he behaves more like a technofascist disguised as a liberal, who
backs all of President Obama’s nasty little wars in Afghanistan,
Iraq, Libya, Pakistan, Somalia, and Yemen..  Since he always
“supports the troops,” Sanders never opposes any defense spending
bill.  He stands behind all military contractors who bring
much-needed jobs to Vermont.

Senator Sanders rarely misses a photo opportunity with Vermont
National Guard troops when they are being deployed to Afghanistan
or Iraq.  He’s always at the Burlington International Airport when
they return.  If Sanders truly supported the Vermont troops, he
would vote to end all of the wars posthaste.”

A unanimous Senate vote is rare, so what explains being more loyal to
Israel than quite a few critical Jewish Israelis in that country
itself? An important factor is undoubtedly money. In 2006 when the London Review of Books published an article (commissioned and rejected by the Atlantic Monthly)
by Professors Walt and Mearsheimer on the Israel Lobby, there was the
usual brouhaha from the usual suspects. Not the late Tony Judt, who
publicly defended publication of the text and was himself subjected to
violent threats and hate mail by we know who.

The New York Review of Books, perhaps shamed by its own
gutlessness on this issue among others, commissioned a text by Michael
Massing which pointed out some mistakes in the  Mearsheimer/Walt
essay but went on to provide some interesting figures himself. His article deserves to be read on its own but the following extract helps to explain the unanimous votes for Israeli actions:

“AIPAC’s defenders like to argue that its success is explained by its
ability to exploit the organizing opportunities available in
democratic America. To some extent, this is true. AIPAC has a
formidable network of supporters throughout the US. Its 100,000
members—up 60 percent from five years ago—are guided by AIPAC’s nine
regional offices, its ten satellite offices, and its
one-hundred-person-plus Washington staff, a highly professional
group that includes lobbyists, researchers, analysts, organizers,
and publicists, backed by an enormous $47 million annual budget….

Such an account, however, overlooks a key element in AIPAC’s
success: money. AIPAC itself is not a political action committee.
Rather, by assessing voting records and public statements, it
provides information to such committees, which donate money to
candidates; AIPAC helps them to decide who Israel’s friends are
according to AIPAC’s criteria. The Center for Responsive Politics, a
nonpartisan group that analyzes political contributions, lists a
total of thirty-six pro-Israel PACs, which together contributed
$3.14 million to candidates in the 2004 election cycle. Pro-Israel
donors give many millions more. Over the last five years, for
instance, Robert Asher, together with his various relatives (a common
device used to maximize contributions), has donated $148,000, mostly
in sums of $1,000 or $2,000 to individual candidates.

A former AIPAC staff member described for me how the system works. A
candidate will contact AIPAC and express strong sympathies with
Israel. AIPAC will point out that it doesn’t endorse candidates but
will offer to introduce him to people who do. Someone affiliated
with AIPAC will be assigned to the candidate to act as a contact
person. Checks for $500 or $1,000 from pro-Israel donors will be
bundled together and provided to the candidate with a clear
indication of the donors’ political views. (All of this is perfectly
legal.) In addition, meetings to raise funds will be organized in
various cities.

Often, the candidates are from states with
negligible Jewish populations.

One congressional staff member told me of the case of a Democratic
candidate from a mountain state who, eager to tap into pro-Israel
money, got in touch with AIPAC, which assigned him to a Manhattan
software executive eager to move up in AIPAC’s organization. The
executive held a fund-raising reception in his apartment on the
Upper West Side, and the candidate left with $15,000. In his state’s
small market for press and televised ads, that sum proved an
important factor in a race he narrowly won. The congressman thus
became one of hundreds of members who could be relied upon to vote
AIPAC’s way. (The staffer told me the name of the congressman but
asked that I withhold it in order to spare him embarrassment.)”

All this is made possible by official US policies since 1967. Were
the US ever to shift on this issue unanimous votes would become
impossible. But not even the United States has so far banned public
demonstrations opposing Israeli brutality and its consistent
deployment of state terror.

On a weekend (18-19 July 2014) where demonstrations took place in
many different parts of the world, the French government banned a
march in Paris organised by many groups including France’s
non-Zionist Jewish organisations and individuals. The ban was defied.
Several thousand people were drenched in tear gas by the hated CRS.
The French Prime Minister Manual Valls, a desperate opportunist and
neo-con, the scourge of the Roma in France, competing with Le Pen for
the right wing vote and unsurprisingly an adornment of the French
Socialist Party who models himself on a shameless war-criminal and
shyster (Tony Blair) explained the ban in terms of  ‘not encouraging
anti-semitism’, etc. 

The grip of the Israel Lobby in France is
complete. It dominates French culture and the media and critical
voices on Israel (Jewish and non-Jewish) are effectively banned.

The Israeli poet and critic, Yitzhak Laor (whose work depicting the
colonial brutality of Israeli soldiers has sometimes been banned in
his own country) describes the new rise of Euro-Zionism in sharp
terms. The  ‘philosemitic offensive’ is ahistorical:

It would be facile to see this memorializing culture as a belated
crisis of international conscience, or a sense of historical justice
that took time to materialize . . . The majority of United Nations
General Assembly members have emerged from a colonial past: they are
the descendants of those who suffered genocides in Africa, Asia or
Latin America. There should be no reason for the commemoration of
the genocide of the Jews to block out the memory of these millions
of Africans or Native Americans killed by the civilized Western
invaders of their continents.

Laor’s explanation is that with the old Cold War friend-enemy
dichotomy swept aside a new global enemy had to be cultivated in

In the new moral universe of the ‘end of history’, there was one
abomination—the Jewish genocide—that all could unite to condemn;
equally important, it was now firmly in the past. Its commemoration
would serve both to sacralise the new Europe’s liberal-humanist
tolerance of ‘the other (who is like us)’ and to redefine ‘the
other (who is different from us)’ in terms of Muslim

Laor skilfully deconstructs the Glucksmanns, Henri-Levys and
Finkelkrauts  who dominate the print media and the videosphere in
France today. Having abandoned their youthful Marxist beliefs in the
late Seventies, they made their peace with the system. The emergence
of an ultra-Zionist current in France, however, predates the ‘New
(sic) Philosophers’.  As Professor Gaby Piterburg, reviewing Laor’s
essays in the New Left Review, explained:

As in the US, the 1967 war was a turning point in French Jewish
consciousness. A young Communist, Pierre Goldman, described the ‘joyous
fury’ of a pro-Israel demonstration on the boulevard Saint-Michel,
where he encountered other comrades, ‘Marxist-Leninists and
supposed anti-Zionists, rejoicing in the warrior skills of Dayan’s
troops’. But the political reaction of the Elysée to the 1967 war
was the opposite to that of the White House.

Alarmed that Israel
was upsetting the balance of power in the Middle East, de Gaulle
condemned the aggression, describing the Jews as ‘an elite people,
sure of itself and domineering’. French Jewish organizations that
had taken a pro-Israel foreign policy for granted began to organize
on a political basis for the first time, as Pompidou and Giscard
continued de Gaulle’s arms embargo into the 70s.

In 1976 the Jewish
Action Committee (CJA) organized a ‘day for Israel’ which mobilized
100,000 people. In 1977 the formerly quietist CRIF, representative
council of some sixty Jewish bodies, produced a new charter
denouncing France’s ‘abandonment of Israel’, published by Le Monde as
a document of record.

In the 1981 presidential election the CJA
founder, Henri Hajdenberg, led a high-profile campaign for a Jewish
vote against Giscard; Mitterrand won by a margin of 3 per cent.
The boycott was lifted, and Mitterrand became the first French
president to visit Israel. Warm relations were sealed between
the CRIF and the Socialist Party elite, and a tactful veil of
silence drawn over Mitterrand’s war-time role as a Vichy official.

[A small footnote: Whenever Professor Piterburg (a former officer in
the IDF) is attacked by Zionists at public lectures for being a
‘self-hating Jew’, he responds thus: “I don’t hate myself, but I hate
you.” ]

So much for official France. The country itself is different. Opinion
polls reveal that at least 60 percent of French people are opposed to
what Israel is doing to Gaza. Are they all anti-semites?
couldn’t be influenced by the media, could they? Because it’s totally
pro-Israel. Could it be the case that the French population is
ignoring Hollande, Valls and the mercenary ideologues who support

What about Britain? Here the  Extreme Centre that rules the country
as well as the  official ‘Opposition’ dutifully supported their
masters in Washington. The coverage of the recent events in Gaza on
state television (BBC) was so appallingly one-sided
that there were
demonstrations outside the BBC’s offices in London and Salford. My
own tiny experience with the BBC reveals the fear and timidity at
work inside. As I blogged on the London Review of Books, this is what happened:

On Wednesday 16 July I received four calls from the BBC’s Good Morning Wales.
First morning call: was I available to be interviewed about Gaza tomorrow morning? I said yes.
First afternoon call: could I tell them what I would say? I said (a)
Israel was a rogue state, pampered and cosseted by the US and its
vassals. (b) Targeting and killing Palestinian children (especially
boys) and blaming the victims was an old Israeli custom. (c) The BBC
coverage of Palestine was appalling and if they didn’t cut me off I
would explain how and why.

Second afternoon call: was I prepared to debate a pro-Israeli? I said yes.
Afternoon message left on my phone: terribly sorry. There’s been a
motorway crash in Wales, so we’ve decided to drop your item.

Few British citizens are aware of the role their own country played
in creating this mess. It was a long time ago when Britain was an
Empire and not a vassal, but the echoes of history never fade away.
It was not by accident, but by design that the British decided to
create a new state and it wasn’t Balfour alone. 

The Alternate
Information Center in Beit Sahour, a joint Palestinian-Israeli
organization promoting justice, equality and peace  for Palestinians
and Israelis recently put up a post. It was a quote  from The Bannerman Report
written in 1907 by the Prime Minister of Great Britain, Sir Henry
Campbell-Bannerman, and, as it was strategically important it was
suppressed and was never released to the public until many years

“There are people (the Arabs, Editor’s Note) who control spacious
territories  teeming with manifest and hidden resources. They dominate
the intersections of  world routes. Their lands were the cradles of
human civilizations and religions.  These people have one faith, one
language, one history and the same aspirations.  No natural
barriers can isolate these people from one another …

…..if, per chance,
 this nation were to be unified into one state, it would then take
the fate of  the world into its hands and would separate Europe from
the rest of the world.  Taking these considerations seriously, a
foreign body should be planted in the heart of this nation to
prevent the convergence of its wings in such a way that  it could
exhaust its powers in never-ending wars. It could also serve as a
springboard for the West to gain its coveted objects.”

Educating Toward a Culture of Peace, pages  309–323, Information Age
Publishing, 2006]


Link: http://www.outlookindia.com/printarticle.aspx?291478



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