September 30, 2004

Holocaust?

This is a link to an article by Nitzan Horowitz on The Den that refers to the slave trade as the "double holocaust" on account of the suffering of those kidnapped and removed from Africa and the suffering of those they left behind.* It it also refers to the Jewish. holocaust as if the holocaust was a purely Jewish affair.

I believe that it's a major error, both politically and academically, to refer to genocides other than the Nazi holocaust as holocausts. Zionists like to make out that the holocaust is unique in terms of sheer numbers, aims and methods. But all histories are unique if only in terms of time and space and many genocides, like the slave trade, outweigh the holocaust for sheer numbers. Calling the holocaust, "the holocaust" does not make it bad. What it consisted of was what made it bad. Similarly the slave trade was bad enough without it being called a holocaust. Those who call it such seem to lack confidence in the description of what actually occurred sufficiently arousing people to condemn it.

Nowadays we are used to hearing the Israelis and Zionist movement compared to the Nazis and the ethnic cleansing of Palestine compared to the holocaust. This doesn't exaggerate Palestinian suffering. Holocaust survivor the late Israel Shahak said that any holocaust survivor would testify that a quick death is better than a slow torture. If that is the case then you could say that Palestinian suffering surpasses the holocaust. But it is not the holocaust. That name belongs to a different episode in history.

Returning to my earlier point, many identity groups, Jews, Irish, Palestinians, native Americans, Africans - the list is literally endless as new genocidal campaigns begin and/or continue - calling their collective and historic suffering holocausts doesn't amplify the suffering, it doesn't (as the Zionists argue) minimise the holocaust; it minimises the suffering by implying that the suffering would not count as suffering en masse if the word holocaust wasn't applied to it.

Perhaps we can agree that the Nazi holocaust was unique, but that that "uniqueness" is shared with the slave trade, the Irish famine, the conquest of the Americas and many many more genocidal campaigns. Not unique by any dictionary definition then.

Finally, the use of the expression "Jewish holocaust" is also an error. It was the Nazi holocaust and killed many more millions than just the Jewish millions.

*Updated 18/1/2005 in the wake of an adverse comment from Dave of the Den.

Elections? What elections?

According to the Lebanese Daily Star, elections in Iraq in January 2005 are looking increasingly unlikely. Meanwhile Hizbullah's electoral success could give it a seat in the Lebanese cabinet.

Islamophobia an Outrage! Ken Livingstone

Finally Ken Livingstone and a group of lesbian and gay and anti-racist activists have slapped the opportunistic Peter Tatchell down (in two separate letters to The Guardian). For some years now the former closet gay has been harrassing whoever the British, American and Israeli governments have been opposed to. His hostility to the laws and practices of the Palestinian "Authority" led him and some supporters to attack a Free Palestine demonstration earlier this year. I don't expect Tatchell to alter his position in the wake of two letters being published against him in the Guardian., one of which (Ken Livingstone's) is clearly calling Tatchell a liar, but hopefully some of his well-meaning but, until now, unthinking accolytes will drift away from his informal alliance with imperialists and racists.

September 28, 2004

Enough already! Part II

At last someone has taken the time to issue a response to Paul Eisen's essay "Jewish Power". Follow the link and enjoy.

September 26, 2004

And I quote

I know these quotes are well known, but it's not always easy to find them in one place so here they are:

"We must expropriate gently the private property on the state assigned to us. We shall try to spirit the penniless population across the border by procuring employment for it in the transit countries, while denying it employment in our country. The property owners will come over to our side. Both the process of expropriation and the removal of the poor must be carried out discreetly and circumspectly."

[Theodor Herzl - Zionism's Founding Father - Diary, 1895]

"His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine ..."

[Lord Arthur James Balfour - November, 1917]

"In Palestine we do not propose to even to go through the form of consulting the wishes of the present inhabitants of the country ... Zionism, be it right or wrong, good or bad, is rooted in age-long tradition, in present needs, in future hopes of far profounder import than the desire and prejudices of the 700,000 Arabs who now inhabit that ancient land: In my opinion - that is right."

[Lord Arthur James Balfour - August, 1919]

"Palestine belongs to the Arabs in the same sense that England belongs to the English or France to the French ... It is wrong and inhuman to impose the Jews on the Arabs. What is going on in Palestine today cannot be justified by any moral code of conduct."

[Mahatma Gandhi - 1938]

"Why should the Arabs make peace? If I was an Arab leader, I would never make terms with Israel. That is natural: we have taken their country. Sure, God promised it to us, but what does that matter to them? Our God is not theirs. We come from Israel, it's true, but two thousand years ago, and what is that to them? There has been anti-Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They only see one thing: we came here and stole their country. Why should they accept that?"

[David Ben-Gurion, first Israeli Prime Minister - quoted by Nahum Goldmann, former president of the World Jewish Congress]

"The Palestinian-Israeli conflict is not just an issue of military occupation and Israel is not a country that was established "normally" ... Apartheid is a crime against humanity. Israel has deprived millions of Palestinians of their liberty and property. It has perpetuated a system of gross racial discrimination and inequality. It has systematically incarcerated and tortured thousands of Palestinians, contrary to the rules of international law. It has waged a war against a civilian population, in particular children ... Palestinians are not struggling for a "state" but for freedom, liberation and equality, just like we were struggling for freedom in South Africa ..." 

[This quote is often attributed to Mandela but it was not by him. It was by a Palestinian journalist, Arjan el-Fassed emulating a kind of "letter from" style from the New York Times - March, 2001]

"For me, this business called the state of Israel is finished ... I can't bear to see it anymore, the injustice that is done to the Arabs ... All kinds of scum coming from America and as soon as they get off the plane taking over lands in the territories and claiming it for their own ... I can't do anything to change it. I can only go away and let the whole lot go to hell without me."

[Rivka Michaeli - Israeli actress (household name) - Aug, 1998]

"Mom ... I'm witnessing this chronic, insidious genocide and I'm really scared and questioning my fundamental belief in the goodness of human nature. This has got to stop. I think its a good idea for us to all drop everything and devote our lives to making this stop... I still want to dance around to Pat
Benatar records and have boyfriends... But I also want this to stop."

[Rachel Corrie - US citizen and ISM member, murdered in Rafah - e-mail to home Feb, 28, 2003]





September 25, 2004

Ten Pound Challenge III

This time it's personal. Is Shuli Davidovich a liar or what? No it's no good answering "yes" or "no". We know the answer to that one in general terms. In today's Guardian. Shuli Davidovich explains why the Israeli army has to keep ambulances waiting at checkpoints while people suffer, die or give birth. She says that "there have been numerous examples of Palestinian terror organisations abusing ambulances by using them to smuggle weapons and suicide bombers into Israel". So here's the challenge: I will give ten pounds to anyone who can detail two proven cases of ambulances being used "to smuggle weapons and suicide bombers into Israel". What you have to do is write down and link two firmed up cases. Not the same one twice. Not bland assertions from Zionist hate sites. Real cases. You don't have to give your real name, but an address is essential so I can send the ten pound note recorded delivery. And you have to be the first one. I've only got one tenner to spare. Don't worry I won't publish addresses. So you can reply by email to levi9909@aol.com or by comment - but of course if you respond by comment your address will be on view. Oh yes, you need to site two examples to win the tenner but Shuli says there are "numerous examples" so if anyone knows of "numerous examples" then please let me know. Answers by 23.59 9/10/2004 (that's 10/9/2004 if you're in the US).

ZIONISM AGAINST JEWS
JEWS AGAINST ZIONISM

No special reason for posting this. I just stumbled on it. It was produced by some Jewish anarchist activists and modified by myself and others for distribution at what was going to be a Free Palestine day but then developed into a Don't attack Iraq/Free Palestine day. If you see the leaflet, at the bottom are the words "For a global intifada and an end to all borders!" They weren;t my idea but the Jews campaigning against borders was what gave me the idea for the "dreadful. punning title": Jews sans frontieres.
Haloscan commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

Putting comments back in their place

I've had some major issues with the positioning of my Haloscan comments so I've reset my template and reinstalled the comments. Unfortunately this means that old comments appear below the post below the post (sic sic) to which they relate. I mention this because I attract a bit of flak from some Zionist sickos and, knowing their propensity for projection, I don't want them accusing me of censorship.

September 24, 2004

Enough already!

I know many Jews who get exasperated with Jewish support for Israel but here's one guy who is so demoralised about it he has very publicly resigned from the Jewish people. I’m not sure how such an inverted excommunication works but that’s what he’s done. There are many people who were born and raised Jewish who have simply walked away from it out of sheer despair at the apparent (or is it real?) power of Zionism over the Jewish communities. It's usually more of an "I can't be bothered with it anymore" sort of a thing. This guy’s resignation is interesting because it’s done so casually. No bitterness or hatred. Just a resignation, albeit within a lengthy resignation letter. Contrast this with the highly publicised hostility of Gilad Atzmon. He has been joined recently by Elias Davidsson and Paul Eisen. For this hapless trio, and their mysterious mentor, Israel Shamir, Jewishness is the main issue with Zionism.  Not colonialism, not apartheid, not ethnic cleansing, not proxy wars...Jewishness. Theirs is a call, not to oppose malevolent forces, but to "round up the usual suspects".

September 21, 2004

Who said "No society was ever built on terror"?

a) Mahatma Gandhi (who shunned all violence)

b) Nelson Mandela (who refused to renounce armed struggle against apartheid)

c) The Chief Rabbi: Jonathan Sacks (lying Likud, or is it Labour, supporter)

You guessed didn't you. It was the old liar himself, the Chief Rabbi, on Thought for the day, slap bang in the middle of the Today. programme that he lied to about an interview with Jonathan Freedland. But I shouldn't sneer at him just because he's a lying supporter of ethnic cleansing and apartheid laws. Consider his words this morning. "No society was ever built on terror". This is a guy who purports to know Israel inside out. Does he really not know that Israel exists thanks to a terror campaign against the native population? And why is a proven liar so welcome on the programme he was caught lying to? Tomorrow's Thought for the day. is going to be presented by Jonathan Aitken, or is it Jeffrey Archer, or even Tony Blair? Sorry, that last one was just plain silly.

No relations?

A quite good letter in The Guardian. relating Israel to apartheid South Africa, calling for a curtailment of certain relations between the West and Israel and written by a Mr Hain. I wonder if by any chance he might be related to Peter Hain, the UK cabinet minister.

"To oppose sanctions against Israel on the grounds that these did not work in Iraq or Cuba and "would have no impact upon the Israeli government" is to ignore their decisive effect upon a country much more similar to Israel - apartheid South Africa.

Israel is, as the latter was, essentially a western colonialist state, both in its continuing attitude towards the people it has dispossessed and the need for its legitimacy to be accepted by the west, and crucially in its overriding need for the west to continue to bankroll it.

Therefore, like South Africa before the sanctions brought down the apartheid regime (both in denying it funds, and in ostracising it culturally and in sport), sanctions are the only viable means available to force those running Israel to understand that the west is no longer prepared to underwrite what has essentially been an invasion and creeping occupancy of Palestine against the wishes of its inhabitants, to give thanks that the Palestinians are prepared to give up attempting to recover their land and accept Israel within its 1967 borders, and to withdraw immediately from those territories.

UN resolution 242 of 1967, calling for the withdrawal from the occupied territories, has been ignored by Israel for over 35 years, with no action from the west except "the gentle art of persuasion" - precisely that which allowed apartheid to continue for over 45 years. No wonder the rest of the world condemns us for our double standards."

Walter Hain
London

Guardian one-liner

Blair really ought to withdraw from his first Gulf war before embarking on a second.
Mark Elf
Dagenham, Essex

September 20, 2004

Unite Against Fascism

I haven't wanted to mention this but here in Dagenham the BNP has just won another council seat. It's in the ward of Goresbrook which is close to the Fords factory (as was). After some e-counselling from a resolute cynic I can talk about it now but I have to say it's depressing.

September 19, 2004

Blair declares Gulf War III

Flushed by his failure in Gulf War II, Tony Blair has now declared Gulf War III.

New link to an American blog

I just stumbled on this blog. Now I won't be able to ride with the Dagenham Hunt (no it's not rhyming slang) anymore, Richard Perle is as good a quarry as any fox.

September 18, 2004

Still time to sign for Palestine

The deadline for submission of the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign petition to the Scottish Parliament to remove charitable status from the so-called Jewish National Fund is 30th September 2004. Betar, another Zionist organisation, have had their charitable status removed but in their case they owned up to the fact that introducing the brown shirt uniform to European politics was hardly a charitable endeavour. Ok, they simply owned up to not actually being a charity. Also the United Jewish Israel Appeal, fearing the embarrassment, seem to have pulled the rug from under them. So it's by no means a forgone conclusion that the supporters and beneficiaries of ethnic cleansing will lose their charitable status but at least anti-racists everywhere can try by signing the petition.

No weapons. No production. No programmes.

So now what?

September 17, 2004

Israel's Demographics

Palestinians are being born at the rate of two for every one Israeli born. They are being killed at the rate of three for every Israeli killed. Thus Israel has its "demographic problem" under control.

September 16, 2004

PSC: not a smart enough investor

The Alliance and Leicester has closed the Palestine Solidarity Campaign's account without giving a reason. PSC is in a panic* because it doesn't have the resources to establish which of its members pay by standing order. If you are a standing order paying member of PSC you have to change your SO details to pay the Co-op Bank. Check with PSC for details. If you are an Alliance and Leicester account holder you need to close your account and soon. Whether you bank with them or not you might like to write to them to ask why they have closed the account of a legitimate campaigning organisation.

* such a panic they haven't posted the information to their website yet.

Kofi quick off the mark

UN secretary General: Kofi Annan has said that the war on Iraq was/is illegal. Well done that man! Where was he in March 2003 when the war began?

September 13, 2004

Steady on Jon!

Jonathan Freedland joins the anti-Blair movement.

September 12, 2004

Now they're accusing me of stalking!

This really is scary stuff.

Weird Jews indeed!

I've just had the strangest experience. Yesterday I stumbled on an e-community calling itself "Weird Jews". There was some kind of debate going on about Zionism and so I registered and posted a post in reply to a thread that was going on. My post seemed pretty inkeeping with what was going on and the originator has now thanked me which was nice. What she didn't know was that today when I saw that no-one had replied I assumed the thread had closed and posted my post independently. Well as soon as it hit the screen hostile responses started coming in. I'll post all the stuff elsewhere. Also there was some reasoned (if you can call it that) discussion. The responses came by email notification with an option to screen, unscreen or reply. I wasn't sure what it meant but I clicked screen and replied. Well now they have removed my post together with all the comments, denounced me for being a nutcase, an anti-Zionist (guilty) and for screening the responses (what's wrong with that?). I thought I was being ethical and I thought that weird Jews (whilst it's a seriously naff name) meant that they were against the mainstream. Anyway if anyone wants to explain where I went wrong please do. Or check them out for yourselves they certainly need some ideological broadening out. But don't screen comments and don't criticise Israel.

Observe this!

Not Gandhi
The juxtaposition of the names Gandhi and Mandela to denounce political violence is absurd (Comment, last week). Mandela was an active member of the military wing of the African National Congress and served as long as he did in prison, specifically, because he refused to renounce the armed struggle against apartheid. For this reason Amnesty International refused to take up his case.

Also, given Aaronovitch's support for the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan, who on earth is he to invoke Gandhi?
Mark Elf
Dagenham, Essex

September 11, 2004

Today Millwall; tomorrow California

Burke and Hare had nothing on me. I keep plundering Lenin's Tomb lately. But his last line in his article on the Respect victory over Labour in Millwall was to good to miss. The result is actually a bit perplexing as the Tories won the seat. Nader's detractors will say that this shows that Nader should drop out of the race in the States and Respect should stand aside in Britain, but pressure has to be brought to bear on Labour in the UK and the Democrats over there.

It don't mean a thing if...

It's getting tough now. Some leftists are panicking that Bush may win again if enough people vote for Ralph Nader, particularly in the so-called swing states (or marginals as we call them in the UK). Is Kerry really so much better than Bush? He's certainly worse than Gore and Gore was pretty bad. Would it be true to say that if Nader snatches the election from Kerry then the so-called Democrats might have to adopt elements of Ralph Nader's programme in future years? Also, suppose we ran our own ABB (as in anybody but Blair). We'd end up with Michael Howard. I still can't decide what I would do if I was an American voter. I do know that I am so disgusted with Blair my only option in recent elections was to vote Respect.

Linda Grant's trip to Oz

Linda Grant manages to mention the Palestinians in this review of Amos Oz's latest offering; not in terms of their victimisation, but the fact that their presence wasn't taken into account by Jewish immigrants. This looks like an attempt, by Grant and Oz, to make one of the first ethnic cleansing campaigns, after the holocaust, look like an accident. But it's ok since "there is no objective truth" about the history of the Zionist conquest of Palestine. This, of course, is a liberal Zionist sleight of hand whereby the Zionists don't have to own up to the war crimes they commit or support but at the same time they don't have to invoke the Barak maxim that "all Arabs are liars".

September 10, 2004

Israel: a light unto the nations!

Just as American troops used "Israeli techniques" in Abu Ghraib, so, it seems, Putin uses Israeli techniques in his "war on terror".

September 09, 2004

Boycott Ottolenghi?

I'm not a Times. reader myself but a friend brought this rather crass restaurant review to my attention. According to the writer, Guardian. readers might boycott the Ottolenghi restaurant if they thought it was Israeli owned. Gaby's on Charing Cross Road is well known for being owned by Iraqi Jews and it's very popular with the Guardianisti.

September 08, 2004

'Anti-Semitism'

Here's an article I just happened upon.

Business as usual in Stalin's Russia

Shining a light on what is happening in Chechnya is as difficult in the Russian press as doing the same on Palestine in the West: it results in dismissals and/or resignations.

September 06, 2004

Zionism is still colonialism

A response to Chomsky on the one-state solution.

Bush lite?

I think it was Chomsky who labelled Kerry, "Bush lite". I think we can drop the "lite".

Et tu Counterpunch!

A bizarre Counterpunch article has it that American foreign policy is in thrall to a cabal of Jewish Zionist activists. The strangest assertion is that American Middle East policy was guided by "Arabists" from the "1920s to roughly 1990." It gets worse, the essay appears in the book "The politics of anti-semitism". This focusing on the Jewishness, or even the card-carrying Zionism, of this or that one in the US administration misses the point about America being an imperial power whether its leading foreign policy advisers are Zionists or "Arabists".

September 05, 2004

Cue the hypocritical outpourings

Of course people are bewildered and outraged by the atrocity in Beslan but the most bewildering aspect has to be the sheer hypocrisy of so many commentators who go on as if the Chechens themselves have suffered nothing at the hands of their Russian neighbours. The Independent on Sunday. refers to the Chechen attack as "Russia's 9/11". None of the single incidents against Chechen civilians have been "9/11s" because the actions have been carried out by a state's standing army. Howard Jacobson wrings his hands whilst telling us that he cannot fathom the mind of a terrorist before deciding, with the following words, "Cradle a child in the ideology of resistance and you will make him go where our imaginations cannot", that it's the parents' fault for encouraging resistance. This, of course, doesn't explain how Menachem Begin and other Zionists embarked on their terrorist careers after they were told, not to resist their tormentors, but to run away to another land to become the tormentors there. David Aaronovitch had to chip in, wrongly invoking Mandela as a paragon of non-violent virtue. Worryingly, Putin has suggested that the attack on the school and its children took place because "We have showed weakness and weak people are beaten". Finally there is the glee with which reports of Arab terrorists among the Chechens have been greeted. But as Jason Burke in The Observer. points out "It's too easy to blame bin Laden".

September 01, 2004

Black Wednesday

or what Barbara Amiel might have called "national gloat day". She might actually call it Black Tuesday since it was yesterday that she and husband Conrad, "but you can call me Lord" Black were accused of "corporate kleptocracy".