154614 Worthy causes CAN unite worst enemies! (post a mine bout the Permacultuvating/LETS fook in Haifa amongst others) ----------- 156548 +9 Please Israel, Let My America Go Free! ------------- 156730 Majdur criticizes E Said Edward Said as a Defeatist Mouthpiece ---------------- LBO threads on Jews ---------------- dailyrotten.com on google --------- 155265 scientologists own google ----------- 155060 (same topic via operatingthetan.com/google) ---------- 155144 + 4 HOW TO BE WELCOME BY IMC GERMANY AND  AUSTRIA by Latuff ----------- 155103 + 8 (short c's)  Bono, the New Poster Boy for Globalization ------------ 155013 AUSTRALIAN TREESITTERS and RAINFORESTS UNDER ATTACK! ---------- 154863 Prisoner Jeff "Free" Luers Responds to congressional 'Green Scare' ----------------- 154846 ANOTHER REFORM IS POSSIBLE: Anti-Globalization Movement Sells Out---- only the comments on this one; an earlier similar item: 132398 Anti-Globalists Make a Play for Legitimacy (Stratfor analysis) (english) -------------  the novel, politics and Islam (from newleftreview.org via pen-l Yoshie): The astonishing story of the uproar in Egypt over the publication of a Syrian novel set in Algeria—a work of literature as trigger for political crisis and polemical turmoil, two decades after it was written, in a landscape completely transformed. Haydar Haydar’s fiction as tuning-fork of stark dissonances of time and outlook in the Arab world. -----------------
 I'm trying again, still want answers; numbers other than victim amounts. quote 5 folk this time instead of only saying 'I'm leaving yall plenny of room'. Tried posting this at indy israel but it didn't work for some reason. ------- A few days ago I asked for sets of numbers other than those indicating dead folk; flowcharts for bombs, monies, trees, anything rather than rivers of blood; I jokingly used only one line saying 'i'm leaving plenny of room for yall'. That item got erased (or hidden, dunno). This time I'll try with a more substantial set of items by 5 people in total (not counting my comments). ------- . . .and I thought civilizations 'hottest' crossfire (formerly -roads) was only good for bad news . . . --- http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ijccr/message/415 On Wed, Mar 06, 2002 at 03:22:45PM -0000, shaytmura wrote: Hello , I am shay cohen, from Haifa Israel. I`m proud to say Community Currencies are beginning to hit off in Israel - at the end of this message I`ll add our community details... right now I am working on the new Haifa LETS, Is really still at baby talk stage, though we do have very vivid group of about 30 founding members. and a site (in hebrew) on the web. I really need some help- mainly with finding an HTML code for online directory and trade-system that I would be able to transform into hebrew interface(cgi won`t do). having that I`m sure we could bring thousends Israelies to get involved If you`re thinking "why should I help this guy" I can tell you that beside the usual "lets get together" rhyme- we also contribute to peace by being a bi-national (arab and jews) venture in a conflict area. I would be glad to help with information (or anything else) about Israel, LETS and Other community ventures- Yours Truely, Shay Cohen Israeli "Machrozet" LETS 300 members, local sub-groups, parmacalture: http://www.bdidut.com/machrozet Haifa LETS 30-and promoting, hour based currency, social justice activists: http://planet.nana.co.il/haifalet ------------------ From: Richard Kay <rich@c... Date: Wed Mar 6, 2002 10:08 pm Subject: Re: [ijccr] CC hits Israel!!! Shay, Very pleased to hear from someone actively working on CC and Israel/Palestine peace activity. Not sure why you don't want CGI for the technical CC platform, is this because Hebrew doesn't read left to right top to bottom like English ? Anyway I have a very simple prototype that does the accounts and admin for a mono system at: http://copsewood.net/letsplay/index.html and you can have the source code if you like it on GPL terms if this helps. For a more heavyweight solution ("Cybercredits" multi-currency but no wants/offer directory) have a look at http://www.openmoney.org/go/cc.html I understand the source for cybercredits to be available same terms as Perl. (i.e. GPL or Artistic licese take your pick). Best regards, Richard Kay rich@c... http://copsewood.net/ Community email addresses: Post message: ijccr@yahoogroups.com Subscribe: ijccr-subscribe@yahoogroups.com Unsubscribe: ijccr-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com List owner: ijccr-owner@yahoogroups.com IJCCR website: http://www.geog.le.ac.uk/ijccr Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/ (and annoying adverts) ----------------------- from the same list (by another veteran/rook of the field, author of New Money for Healthy Communities): Here's your link to the excerpted, e-book version (in PDF format) of my new book, MONEY: Understanding and Creating Alternatives to Legal Tender, to be published by Chelsea Green in January, 2002 (Paper, 295 pp, $19.95): http://www.chelseagreen.com /Livelihood/MoneyEBook.htm. This book has been in the works for more than 4 years. It goes well beyond my previous books in demystifying the subject of money and outlining equitable, community-based exchange alternatives. Once you've read MONEY, you'll never think the same about what money is, what money does, how it is created, whom it benefits, and how the creation of parallel currencies outside of money as legal tender has the potential to transform community economic life. Vicki Robin, co-author of the best-selling YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIFE and writer of the book's Foreword, gives us the metaphor we need: Dorothy's little dog Toto pulling back the curtain to reveal the "wizard" for what he really is, a fraud and a deception. So it is with money. We are dazzled by the glittering Oz of money, banking, and finance, thinking it magical and beyond our comprehension. But wait a minute, like the little man at the controls trying desperately to pull the curtain closed, the financial cognoscenti are happy to keep us uninformed. Money is actually nothing more than a human idea, an agreement about how goods and services are exchanged. And, guess what? The rules of the money game are made to favor particular groups. They're set and controlled by the banks, (not the government, not the people) where 95% of all money is created as interest-bearing debt. This inherently unstable system (the money supply is always lagging behind the growing amount of debt) creates and fuels the cancerous growth that now threatens to overwhelm the life support systems of the planet. Imagine playing a game of Monopoly in which all money must be borrowed at interest from the bank who do you think would win? But, there's hope. "The forgotten history of money is about how people can create their own." This book shows how the creation of parallel currency and credit systems can work to sustain and protect communities and their local economies, reinforcing the values of social justice, self-reliance, economic equity, and personal freedom. These alternative money systems have a long history, from depression-era scrip, to the Swiss WIR business group trading system (17% of Swiss businesses and 2.5 billion Swiss francs in annual trading), to the newe LETS (local employment and trading) systems, Toronto Dollars, YES (youth employment scrip), e-currency models, and more. The growth of alternative currency systems world-wide has been astonishing, from less than 100 in 1990 to well over 2000 today. In Argentina, currently perched on a mountain of debt and threatening to topple into default, the RGT (Global Trading Network) is a social money movement that sustains a half a million families and offers insulation and protection from the adverse effects of economic globalization. Perhaps New York City should look to this model as it struggles to counter the severe economic effects of the World Trade Center attacks (ask to see my letter to Mayor-elect Bloomberg). Need more reasons to read MONEY? Go to the link provided and skim the e-book, and read the "Talking Points" that explain why this book is even more relevant today, in the aftermath of 9/11 and with the growing threat of national recession, than when it was written. E-mail or phone Margo Baldwin, MONEY Project Director at Chelsea Green (e-mail: mbaldwin@s...; phone: 802-765-4869; fax 802-765-4376) if you'd like to know more. If you'd like to have a copy of the printed volume, you can order it through your local bookseller, you can buy it from Chelsea Green (at a 20% pre-publication discount), you can order it from www.Amazon.com, at a similar discount. Sincerely, Tom Greco ------------------------ For the insiders it is fun to go over to a fresh neighbouring list (48 messages so far) by Jon chance (the chief of cea one he calls time-energy acounting and see him put up with and (unstuckuppily enough) just how he gets scolded and put down by 'perfect' peer Turmel 'in private' <<<at the end turmel goes: Please appreciate that I did not publish this in public. I like your writings most of the time and I would rather you correct those errors than make me have to do it. Keep up the good work but try to get it perfect like mine. --- (they both post at ijccr but turmel don't here): http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ Time-Energy-Accounting/message/8 --- John Turmel <TURMEL@f... wrote: Date: Fri, 08 Feb 2002 15:23:48 -0000 From: chiefofstaffcea@y... ("chiefofstaffcea") The function of the time-energy accounting (TEA) system, 100% backed by human time and renewable energy, is to: -------- JCT: Nothing wrong with any energy as collateral. -------- 1. Administer a lawful citizens' currency. 2. Strengthen the liberties and responsibilities of individual citizens and local communities. 3. Minimize the centralization of power. 4. Balance competition and cooperation in the marketplace. 5. Minimize public and private bureaucracy. 6. Maximize efficient and equitable utilization of natural resources. 7. Eliminate the need for personal income tax. --------- JCT: And the need for sales tax and any other tax that requires the registration of each and every transaction. Nothing more efficient than everyone counting up their chips, (assets) once a year and chipping in a share, with no everlasting sales slips. --------- 8. Minimize the need for any taxation. 9. Minimize corporate-government racketeering. 10. Stabilize the money supply and price level. 11. Restore full-reserve banking. --------- JCT: Implement ZERO-reserve banking. Nothing as silly as making the issuance of new chips dependent on old savings rather than on new collateral. --------- 12. Remove the primary cause of economic inflation, deflation, recessions, depressions, warfare and waste of resources. 13. Enhance life, liberty and tranquility for all. The time-energy accounting (TEA) network issues: 1. Citizens dividends backed by human lifetime ($1 = one hour = $730 per month) plus 2. Energy dividends backed by harvested renewable energy ($1 = one kilowatt-hour). --------- JCT: I have no idea what this is supposed to mean but a kilowatt-hour costs 10 cents in Canada and I don't know where you get off picking numbers. I didn't date. -------- Each time-energy dollar is valid for one year from the month of issuance, then "self-redeems" or "extinguishes" itself like an expiring coupon. -------- JCT: So someone will always get stung with the loss by using your "lousy currency" (is how they'll feel) when there is absolutely no reason to have poker chips expire. --------- The sooner participants circulate or invest each time-energy dollar, the more value the dollar has, since it represents time-energy value for only one year (demurrage). ----------- JCT: The dollar may have more velocity, it may create more trade and work but it can't have more value. It's worth an hour no matter ----------- how many times it's traded. Savings are channeled to useful investments in renewable energy infrastructure rather than paper money, precious metals, uranium, oil or other "barren" (non-renewable) commodities. ---------- JCT: We don't use savings to find investments. We use new money. ---------- Renewable energy investments produce real dividends (not interest) in the universal metric of kilowatt-hours measured by ordinary energy meters. Human lifetime is itself a natural dividend in the universal metric of hours measured by ordinary clocks (unless you endorse slavery). Participants are issued citizens dividends once they are 16 or over so that parents will not be encouraged to over-populate for money. ---------- JCT: Take a look at http://www.cyberclass.net/turmel/abprogs.htm and you'll notice I developed a dividend program which works much better than this. ---------- Who can reasonably deny that our lifetime is our most valuable asset? Who can reasonably deny that benign renewable energy is the foundation of a sustainable civilization? Among other things, renewable energy can desalinate our oceans to produce abundant fresh water. The issuing of time-energy dollars is performed by elected local treasurers and their staff. ----------- JCT: The issuing is performed by a computer cashier with no brains and no decisions to make other than to find out if the collateral is there. ------------ No electronic or other non-manual vote tabulation is permitted. Confederated / cooperative local treasuries co-audit each other on a randomly selected basis every three months. ---------- JCT: Absolutely unnecessary when everything balances all the time as they do in any LETS. ------------ Time + Energy = Wealth. ------------ JCT: Time OR Energy = Wealth ----------- Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. --------- JCT: Engineers call it elegance. ----------- If you'd like to understand the hocus-pocus of money creation, here are plenty of related resources: http://egroups.com/group/ jpchance/links/Treasury_000993420879 -------- JCT: With the above errors, I don't want to check this yet. ----------------- Buckminster Fuller's macroeconomic Cosmic Costing is particularly illuminating: http://people.montana.com/~calsch/CosmicCosting.htm http://bfi.org -------------- JCT: Bucky may have been good but even he would admit that no one has produced as elegant an explanation as The Gambler's poker chips model. And he certainly did not produce an engineering analysis of the problem as I've done. You ignore the supremacy of my work at your PR peril. Please appreciate that I did not publish this in public. I like your writings most of the time and I would rather you correct those errors than make me have to do it. Keep up the good work but try to get it perfect like mine. -- John C. "The Banking Systems Engineer" Turmel, Author of the UNILETS interest-free time-based currency United Nations C6 recommendation to Governments in the un.org/millennium/declaration.htm cyberclass.net/turmel / medpot.net --------------- http://egroups.com/group/jpchance - Jon Chance * US Congress. http://antiwar.com - Like World Wars? Fight 'Em Yourself. http://bfi.org - An Option For Success. http://copvcia.com - Officer Ruppert vs The CIA. http://homepower.com - Home-Made Power. http://opensecrets.org - Who's Bribing Who? http://transaction.net - Money: Where's It Come From? ------------------------ Another remarkable development: Grandforks fun mon; we might be exorcising the ubiquitous logo but long live the local gogo: sunshinecable.com/~eisehan/gogo.htm ------------------ also at Jon change's linklist (all as yet unknown to me, as is the allwomencount.net site): Green Certificates for Renewable Energy Renewable Energy = Real Money http://www.ecn.nl/unit_bs/gr_cert/main.html ------- Green Electricity Market Renewable Energy = Real Money gemoz.com ------- Green Energy in Europe Renewable Energy = Real Money greenprices.com/eu/index.asp ------- Green Power Market Services Renewable Energy = Real Money apx.com/sGr_html/sGr.html ------- Renewable Energy Currency System Renewable Energy = Real Money recs.org ------- Tradable Renewable Certificates Renewable Energy = Real Money iea.org/trc -------------- hatstack hitstock hide and defy thy cargo; ass ail n flag the cover-age end of catch-up sprint; I'd sorta lost sight of these fresh money up cookering fella's a little too long I guess; here's a catch up run (gotta at least stay up on if not on emission's cutting edges, profuse gushers, etc lest my various directory entries lose their lure to shaded lights of truth). ================== 156548 Please Israel, Let My America Go Free! (english) by Mohamed Khodr M.D 11:00am Sun Mar 24 '02 (Modified on 6:05pm Sun Mar 24 '02) Mohamed khodr M.D FOREIGN AID: Forty percent of all our foreign aid to poor nations goes to Israel, the 16th richest nation on earth, richer than European countries. While an African or Latino gets 70 cents a year an Israeli gets $15,000 a year. by Mohamed Khodr When historians study the twentieth Century they will be shocked at the irony of events and narratives regarding Christians, Jews, and Muslims, the Three Abrahamic Faiths. The first narrative will be the dominance and colonization of the Christian world of both Jews and Muslims. Christians, the followers of the Prince of Peace, continued their persecution of Jews--the Christ Killers--from the time of the Roman Empire to the culmination of the Holocaust by the new empires of Europe. Christians also colonized, enslaved, robbed, and persecuted eighty percent of all Muslim lands worldwide. Up until World War II, with the exception of 700 years of harmony and glory of the three faiths under the Islamic Empire, history was dictated and written by European Christians who possessed the power of the gun and superiority of the Christian faith revealed by God himself and not by mortal prophets. Forgotten is that Jews denounced Jesus while Muslims revere him, may he be blessed. From the ashes of Europe and the millions of murdered Jews the post -World War II era saw the supremacy of a new western empire in the West, the United States of America and the eastern Communist Empire of the Soviet Union founded by European Jews. From the Guilt of the Holocaust, from the new found political power of American Jews, from Harry Truman's losing campaign for a Presidential election in need of the money and votes of New York Jews, from the perception of America that a Jewish state in the oil rich Middle East will oppose Communist influence in the Arab nations, and from the invisibility, impotence and silence of the Arab and Muslim world still colonized by England, France, and Italy; the Jewish Holocaust by Christians was paid in full through the establishment of ISRAEL upon Palestinian land, a Holy land of Three Faiths given exclusively to the one faith of the "Chosen People".. For those reasons and more one Jewish Diaspora historically committed by Christians was replaced by another Diaspora, the Palestinians, committed this time by the newly found partnership of the 1940's, the "JUDEO-CHRISTIAN" partnership that committed such a crime against humanity. Ironic how the Pendulum of Jewish Acceptance in the West has swung from a 2000 year history of Jewish persecution, murder, pogroms, and Holocaust to the other extreme of total Christian Submission and Subservience to Jewish money, power, and influence within a few years. The Pendulum swing was not moderated by the western powers to stop anywhere in between for consideration of the invisible "OTHER", the invisible Palestinians whom since 1948 are constantly evicted from whatever piece of acreage in the Holy Land they could rest. Their Diaspora never rests but is in constant migration and motion until they die or are killed. Sharon killed and chased them in 1947-1949, in 1953, 1956, 1967, 1973, 1978, 1982, 1987-1990, and 2000 -- "they are all killed or submit" and in all points in between. No peace for the Palestinian weary who've tilled their land in peace and harmony with Jews and Christians in the land of the Prophets. According to Israel they have no right to live in their homes or work their land. They were simply renters and keepers of the land for the "true Jews" from Brooklyn who have the automatic and immediate "right to return", evict, and kill Palestinians to build their new "Squatter Homes" with their California look. How can a tragedy of genocide and ethnic cleansing that's been a stain on humanity and all its faiths and morals continue since 1947 with no end in site? How can the entire world finally awaken to such injustice and demand a peaceful solution that already recognizes Israel on 78% of the land it never had in the first place giving only 22% of the remaining land to its rightful owners yet such a solution is defied? The answer is ISRAEL and its shackling of America. What is the secret to Israel's success? ISRAEL'S RECIPE FOR MANIPULATING AMERICA TO INJUSTICE AND WORLD ISOLATION 1. Begin with a nation of 281 million kind and gullible American hearts and minds disinterested in the world, impatient, uninformed, whose decision making revolves around the Advertising world and television. A nation that seeks a "HOW TO MANUAL" for every aspect of life and death. A nation devoid of parental guidance, spirituality, morals, with priority and value placed on money, i.e. the Dow Jones and not on Mrs. Jones. 2. An American nation whose educational system is weak, overwhelmed, unchallenging, and lacks discipline, rigor, and knowledge on world affairs and world religions. In fact, an educational system that avoids its own negative history of ethnic cleansing, slavery, Apartheid, and world imperialism and hegemony. Americans are taught of their adherence to individual freedoms (not collective or societal), of being good hearted, hard working who respect every one else's freedoms and rights and thus are always surprised to find someone else could possible hate them or be offended by them given their disconnect from their civil and governmental duties. 3. A Capitalistic nation that thrives on individual competition and accumulation of wealth and material. Those unable to climb the Capitalistic ladder must be lazy, stupid, or defective and thus not deserving of the Christian obligation "Am I My Brother's Keeper?" The national mantra is we will acquire wealth here or from abroad regardless of the "means" or "ends" without any human sentimentality (George Kennan 1949). No nation or race will stand in our "capital" gathering and if that takes bombs to "submit" them so be it. We'll just have to find an intelligent way that we can "Spin" our "mistakes" using our public relations machine. Thus as long as the American people are kept in the dark and quiet we can pretty much do whatever the hell we want, so says the "elite". 4. A nation whose knowledge and information depends totally on the Media, Movies, and Pop Culture. Thus whoever "controls the news, controls the views" and can pretty much advertise hell as heaven if need be. The Media is the most critical cultural and societal dispenser of opinions that indoctrinate the nation. All of America's conversations are simply a regurgitation of the last news, weather, sports, movie, magazine, or tabloid item. IMAGE IS EVERYTHING, Damn the Substance, and Launch the Torpedoes. CRITICALLY for American and its foreign policy is that Jewish Americans run, control, edit, direct, write, advertise, and inform the American people in much greater numbers than their mere 1.7% of the population. In fact 4 of the 56 C.E.O.s of the Media Conglomerates that control most of the American media market are Jewish: Levin, Eisner, Sumner, Bertlesman (the fifth: Rupert Murdoch of FOX is a strong Zionist supporter of Israel). Every Hollywood Studio was founded by a Jewish American. Every major Think Tank in Washington D.C. is either founded, funded, directed, or has as its major research elite Jewish Americans. These are the "experts" on television on the Networks and Cable who give Israel the positive victim picture and the Palestinians the negative terrorist label. This in addition to the major Wall Street Brokerage Firms and Banks. THESE ARE FACTS not Anti-Semitic propaganda. However, it doesn't necessarily translate to automatic Pro-Israel support but it does mean that without any balanced reporting from American Jews, Christians, and Muslims, Israel has the upper hand in disseminating its message which is the primary tool of INTIMIDATION OF OUR GOVERNMENT and our citizens. NO AMERICAN POLITICIANS DARES CRITICIZE ISRAEL AT THE RISK OF HIS ELECTORAL LIFE. (Read Paul Findley's "They Dare to Speak Out") THUS America, my nation, is no more independent of Israeli Hegemony than the millions of Palestinians living in occupied squalor camps wondering if they'll die the next day from an American bullet, Apache Helicopter, or F-16, courtesy of the good hearted yet gullible Americans. 1. FOREIGN AID: Forty percent of all our foreign aid to poor nations goes to Israel, the 16th richest nation on earth, richer than European countries. While an African or Latino gets 70 cents a year an Israeli gets $15,000 a year. 2. ISRAEL spies on us continuously. NONE OF OUR MEDIA IS REPORTING THE ARREST OF 120 ISRAELI SPIES RECENTLY WHO MAY HAVE A CONNECTION TO 9-11 WITH SOME SEEN DANCING ON THE ROOF IN NEW YORK WHILE THE PLANES CRASHED INTO THE WTC. (Read the D.E.A. Report on Antiwar.com) 3. Jewish Terrorists in our country can plan to kill and bomb American Muslim institutions and kill a Congressman without much media coverage or John Ashcroft daring to freeze their assets or imprison their members like he's done with thousands of Muslims without charge for the last 6 months. 4. Israel imprison and tortures American citizens without our Government daring to say a word but if an Israel or Jew gets arrested anywhere, our President personally demands their release. It seems some Americans are more American than others. 5. The United Nations Security Council (5 nations) has cast 253 Vetoes since 1949. The U.S. alone has cast 75 of those Vetoes most of them to protect Israel from world condemnation for murdering innocent Palestinians. WHY, WHY, WHY? 6. Jewish Americans are wealthy and contribute 60% of all contributions to the Democratic Party. 7. Our cowardly Congress has been called an "Israeli Occupied Territory" as well as the "Little Knesset" by Secretary James Baker (Knesset is Israel's Parliament). SO MUCH MORE!!! The little nation that we saved with our American G.I.'s in World War II and whom we helped establish (without American there will be no Israel) now is shackling our great nation, the greatest nation with the kindest people who are too shy, too intimidated, and too ignorant to speak up while our money and weapons are killing Palestinians daily. Every Muslim group on our Terrorist List is a group that fights Israel not America. Our expanded war into Iraq and other Muslim nations is to fight Israel's enemies thanks to our Jewish media pundits like: William Safire, Charles Krauthammer, William Kristol etc. God help us if Israel and the few powerful Jewish Americans are going to push us into Armageddon with the Muslim world. Who benefits from such a world war between Christians and Muslims? ISRAEL is the wedge between America and the rest of the world. It is driving us with lies and myths into wars we don't want simply because they control our Congress and Government as it continues to indoctrinate us with Media lies. I ask all Americans to please BEG ISRAEL to let us go and give us back our freedoms and our government. I'm willing to send Israel more of my tax dollars if they just let us be to enjoy our life and have peace with the world. Perhaps all of us Americans can start such a petition and send it to our real leader--Ariel Sharon--to let us live in peace. God bless America with Israel's Generosity. Shalom, America. Mr. Mohamed Khodr is an American Muslim physician and a native from the Middle East. He has worked in Academic Medicine and Public health with national and international health experience. He is a freelance writer who often writes columns on the Palestinian cause, Islam and on America's Foreign Policy in the Middle East. www.mediamonitors.net add your own comments Strange history (english) by Infidel Pete 11:18am Sun Mar 24 '02 How strange is the selective history and memory of Middle East "scholars!" Arabs states have waged war of Israel FOUR TIMES!! Suicide bombers have been blowing up Israeli civilians for years!!! When Israelis finally have enough and start to fight back - with strategies they've learned from Arab/Palestinians "experts" in terror, the world is amazed. Wouldn't YOU want a little revenge against the people who make it a risky expedition every time you or your children leave your house? Palestinians TARGET civilians. (Israelis do not.) This is changing because the Palestinians are raising generations of suicide bombers. Aren't they proud??? And worse, even when the Palestinians get their state, they will still attack Israel and try to destroy it. Why? Because all they know is hate and killing. They cannot build a modern prosperous society so they must blame someone. Everything that's wrong with the Muslim world is the fault of the USA and Israel. Right????? re : infidel (english) by electron-proton ion helium plasma 12:05pm Sun Mar 24 '02 this isnt a sided article, its purely objective, your scholarly retort however, was. kindly refute the facts i.e: [[[ FOREIGN AID: Forty percent of all our foreign aid to poor nations goes to Israel, the 16th richest nation on earth, richer than European countries. While an African or Latino gets 70 cents a year an Israeli gets $15,000 a year ]]] "Everything that's wrong with the Muslim world is the fault of the USA and Israel. Right?????" pretty much. Objectivity? (english) by anti-terrorist 12:26pm Sun Mar 24 '02 "The little nation that we saved with our American G.I.'s in World War II and whom we helped establish (without American there will be no Israel) now is shackling our great nation, the greatest nation with the kindest people who are too shy, too intimidated, and too ignorant to speak up while our money and weapons are killing Palestinians daily. Every Muslim group on our Terrorist List is a group that fights Israel not America." We are neither too shy nor too intimidated. We know who the the terrorists are. The same people, with the same political beliefs, and the same religion as those who bombed our marine barracks in Lebanon, bombed the Cole, bombed our embassies in Africa, hijacked our planes, killed our journalists, and attacked the WTC, TWICE. The same people who danced in the streets after the WTC came down and the same people who carry posters of Osama bin Laden in their demonstrations against the US. They have been fighting us for quite some time. We are just starting to get serious.  ---------------- Plea for mercy (english) by Helmut Mueler 12:35pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Please Israel, don’t suitcase-nuke our small Midwestern town of Sheboygan Wisconsin just because some of the farmer folk are getting pissed about the never-ending support of the Zionist cause at the expense of the corruption of our American media and government. If you won’t terrorize us like you did to NYC I will personally promise to door to door collecting pennies and will send them directly to Arial Sharon.  ---------------- one more thing (english) by Infidel Pete 12:36pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Just one more thing ... (shouting into the wind, on the "independent" IMC) The USA supports Israel because it is a DEMOCRACY (something virutally unknown in Muslim countries.) It allows a pluralistic society. (There are mosques in Israel and Palestinians in the Knesset. Try finding a synagogue in a Muslim country.) The kernel of your problem = Islam means "SUBMIT." Muslims have no hope of competing in, or, indeed, dealing with the modern world with a mindset of "submission." And it makes them angry and frustrated that their countries are underdeveloped, their youth is unemployed, they have been left behind by the rest of world. They are angry and filled with "holy" hatred. Look in the mirror, Muslim countries - your problems are your own creation. (Just look at the last comment, from the previous poster - "Pretty much." That would be pathetic if these people weren't also in love with death - theirs and others - because their lives have no meaning and their futures so bleak.) ----------------  listen here 'infidel' (english) by MA 1:01pm Sun Mar 24 '02 you keep saying that all Muslims are angry and frustrated....it seems to me that YOU are angry and frustrated RELAX and quit your silly habit of throwing all the blame on Muslims And for God's sake grow up  ---------------- Good Article - but BIG Error... (english) by PJD 1:06pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Mr. Khodr, Most of your observations are very well taken, especially regarding the media-manipulated, manufactured ignorance of much of american citizenry. However, you have it backward regarding your notions that Israel manipulates US policy. Quite the opposite; Israel's actions can be better explaned when Israel is reagarded as largely a puppet of _American_ interests in the middle east region. Your proposition that the idea that a small nation of only a few million would influence the US to any large extent just doesn't seem credible.  ---------------- Thank you for clarifying the issues. (english) by Dan 1:51pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Thanks for clarifying the issues although your take on the matter is so biased I will not reward you with a point by point response to your diatrabe. To be succinct, the problem the Arab/Muslim world is with its leadership. So long as you blame the United States and Isreal because of corrupt, totalitarian and non-secular Arab leadership things will never change. The Dr. was kind enough to note how the American media is manipulated. I will not argue that any media in the world is not manipulated by those who run it (including the IMC). The Dr. might want to worry more about the Arab media outlets and how they are manipulated by despots who keep their people ignorant, uniformed and poor. There is a tendancy for activists from the Arab world to be critical of the western media and with good cause. The truth of the matter however is that as an American I have more access to information and media outlets than probably any country on the world. When the Arab world can say the same they will probably notice that they are happier. Maybe it is time for the Arab world to look inward. Ask yourself why women are circumcised and have no rights? Think about the costs of marginalizing and not educating roughly 50% of your workforce? Ask yourself what the costs are for religious intolerance? Maybe examine whether or not radical Islam is keeping your economy in the 13th century? In closing fix your own backyard before you preach to me. I live in the USA and I can walk to a Mosque, Temple or find information on practically any other religion that is practiced. I can learn anything I want about your culture, religion and politics. When the average Arab can do the same then your lot will change. Until then. Keep blaming everyone else and your situation will continue to get worse.  ---------------- Another little thought for Muslims to ponder (english) by rb 1:58pm Sun Mar 24 '02 I wont go into the biased history (Or the pious wringing of hands for the Poor "Innoncent" Palestinians), there's enough commentary here already for heart felt soul searching if you wished to get into dealing with truth. HOWEVER, I would like to begin considering one major point you seem to have overlooked, or perhaps are avoiding contemplating. Yes we give Israel a whole lot of money every year, now more for armored goods than anything else but for years even more for establishing a sucessful economy. Now America for some wild reasoning (and beieve me once we got past the Oh the Poor Persecuted Jews ideology of the 1940s and very early 1950s) found it to its great advantage to have a bastion in the middle of the Arab countries. Gee could it have been because we were facing the Russians down and didn't want their influence to reach into the oil fields our allies need, could it also be that we didn't trust the love and consideration our Muslim and Arab allies had for America (in fact most of the time they haven;t been very willing allies at that as much our fault here as the interests of the Mulsim world probably would lie elsewhere if we allowed it ). Finally; here's the point: the fabulously wealthy U.S. has sent int millions and millions and now billions and billions for establioshing a successful allie in the Mideast. Why in heaven's name haven't the fabulously wealthy Arab nations poured a tenth of that amo0unt of money into building a dynamic economy for the Palestinians ( at least in the last 10 years when Palestinians have had the right to enrich what they held) or even in one of the diaspora lands which the Palestinians fled too ( I'm sure though that some of these people stil consider that flight an invasion but would have welcomed a massive influx of money and expertise to build sound economies. In other words, its time for the Arabs, and especially the Palestinians, to follow follow the examle of their Jewish brethren. When the Jews stopped wringing their hands (of coarse timing on this one helped) and got to work with zeal for their future they built Israel ( with minimal but crucial help from America and the West). The Palestinians can do the same thing. The Hell with making Peace, make money ! Become great trading partners with all the Mideast and sooner than later it will return to a United States of Mesopotamia. A peace that pays off is possible rb  ---------------- how insulting (english) by Madeline Johnson 3:00pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Personally, I find this author's analysis of Americans and American life to be a grave insult. There are many good people in our country who are not the ignorant, uniformed, greedy dupes described here. I may have alot of criticism of my own country and culture, but this is taking it too far. I got my education in a rural school where no one had alot of money, but in school we memorized the constitution word for word, and learned alot more ABCs, history, math, and civility than would have been provided if the state of America's schools were as this author says. There are thousands upon thousands of Americans out there who care very much about their communities, who work hard to provide for their kids, who find happiness in going to their churches and serving on school boards. I know it is a real popular past time nowadays to sit around ragging on American life, but it is inaccurate and offensive.  ---------------- USers (english) by Harq al-Ada 4:30pm Sun Mar 24 '02 How can Israel, a tiny nation, control the mighty USA? Well, it can't, and it doesn't. Because there is no such state ``Israel''. Israel is just a *front* for Zionism. Now, Zionism IS extremely powerful, and it HAS the power to control the USA, and it DOES. Why? Because the USers *are* guillible. Because the USers *are* so intellectually lazy that they'd much rather sit with a beer in their hands and be told TheTruth(TM) courtesy of the ONN (Orwellian News Network). Because the USers *are* criminally negligently ingnorant, by their own choice. Because USers will willingly believe *any lie* rather than think (too much work). Because they are SLAVES, and slaves of the worst kind: slaves that believe that their slavery is *freedom*. FREEDOM IS SLAVERY Oh yeah! And slaves that will get mad at you if you ever shoe them their shackles, slaves that will KILL YOU to defend their slavery! That's how they are dominated. That's how USers have been guiled into asking themselves the moan ``Why do THEY hate us''. Why do our victims hate us? And that's why the good-hearted fool of a typical USer will answer, as a knee-jerk reation: ``They envy us!'' ``Because we are better!''. The USer slave will his wave his shackles and cry ``They hate us because we are *free*!!!''. That's how USA has been turned into the Global Enemy. An army of slaves fighthing life itself all over that world, with the superior weapons paid for and maufactured by the self-righteous race of zombies that Zionism has bred.  ---------------- Bump (english) by George 6:05pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Hey, where is the bad pr0n that we have come to expect from the Zionazis as soon as they exhaust their tiny selection of counter-arguments? I love it, its such a lovely way to say "I dunno this is too hard for me." ================= 156730 Majdur criticizes E Said Edward Said as a Defeatist Mouthpiece (english) by Majdur 7:13pm Sun Mar 24 '02 (Modified on 11:59pm Sun Mar 24 '02) Cutting through all the exaggerated hype about Edward Said's alleged role in the Palestinian struggle, I would like to get right down to the issues that make him in effect a mouthpiece of the present state of Palestinian defeat. Edward Said as a Defeatist Mouthpiece FREE ARAB VOICE http://www.freearabvoice.org/
InResponseToDefeatistThought11.htm Let me make it clear from the onset that we have to distinguish between Edward Said the intellectual and Edward Said's political line on Palestine and Arab issues. If someone is a great musician, that doesn't necessarily make them a great general. And if someone is a great social scientist, that doesn't necessarily make them a great social engineer. So cutting through all the exaggerated hype about Edward Said's alleged role in the Palestinian struggle, I would like to get right down to the issues that make him in effect a mouthpiece of the present state of Palestinian defeat: 1) Terminology: Said refers to the Arab-Zionist struggle as the "Palestinian-Israeli" conflict. This reduces the struggle between us and Zionists into a mere territorial one, therefore a resolvable one, but on the basis of recognizing the legitimacy of the Zionist colonial presence in Palestine. Said forgets that "Israel" is not just a racist state, but a settler-invader state. "Israel's" racism is the outward manifestation of that. In the process negating the identity of Palestine as Arab, and turning the cause into a matter of obtaining Palestinians the rights due a minority group. Of course, Said is also vehmently opposed to Arab nationalism, but that's a different issue. 2) The Holocaust: Said demands of us not to ever question the Holocaust. He buys into and sells wholeheartedly the Zionist argument about the necessary linkage between the Holocaust and the rape of Palestine. (The World Zionist Conference took place in 1897! The Balfour Declaration in 1917! The Holocaust ???) Roger Garaudy, one of the very few intellectuals in the West who dared to stand up courageously to the overwhelming predominance of Zionist propaganda worldwide, is badmouthed by Said in solidarity with the mainstream media. 3) Human Bombs: Said wants Palestinians to give up and condemn this form of legitimate struggle against colonialists as "terrorism". He equates Hamas with Zionists (as he did again in his most fervent article in Le Monde Diplomatique August/September 1998). He wants us to believe that we could fight the COLONIALISTS with non-violence. Said ignores the fact that if it wasn't for the Intifada, and for Hamas (whether you like it or hate it), "Israel" would have never talked to Arafat. 4) The Siege on Iraq: In one of his more insolent articles about a year ago, Said demanded that Iraq abide by all U.N resolutions just as the U.S. government was amassing hardware and troops to strike Iraq. Said thinks that Iraq should have permanent monitoring lest it develops "weapons of mass destruction"!! The Arab imbalance of power with "Israel" notwithstanding. His priority to overthrow the Iraqi regime seems to override the urgent need to lift the siege on Iraq NOW. 5) History: After promoting peace with Zionists throughout the seventies and early eighties in numerous writings, Said now presents himself as an oppositionist. In fact, sources close to Arafat relayed a few years ago that Said tried to play a role in the negotiations bringing an alleged U.S.-sponsored "peace plan" with him but Arafat turned him down because a) he doesn't trust intellectuals, and b) he likes to recruit his own pawns!! REGARDLESS OF THE TRUTH OF THIS ANECDOTE however, we can safely say that Said may oppose Oslo, but he's surely no radical oppositionist.. Anyone who operates within the received parameters of recognizing the legitimacy of "Israel", the sanctity of the Jewish holocaust, the adoption of the Zionist notion of Palestinian "terrorism", regurgitating furthermore the official CNN line on the need to contain Iraq's military threat to the region in the long-run, cannot possibly be our long-lost Salahiddin. Edward Said by religiously accepting and promoting these limits as sacred, has effectively become an enforcer of the status quo and a mouthpiece of defeatism under the New World Order. Otherwise, any human rights organization can give you all the relevant statistics about house demolitions, administrative detention, land confiscation, and what have you, IF YOU CHOOSE TO DE-LINK THOSE PRACTICES FROM THE MERE EXISTENCE OF "ISRAEL" AND ITS COLONIALIST, RACIST, AND MILITARISTIC NATURE and whole history. FREE ARAB VOICE ========= a little harsh, don't you think (english) by the burningman 7:48pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Edward Said is not a communist. So what. He is a brave voice for the national liberation of Palestine, even if he sees that as taking place in a world still dominated by imperialism. There is a reason no one is buying Majdur's books. His dogmatism and half-baked analysis aren't worth the time it takes to unravel his syntax. Check out Said's book against Oslo and then tell me this guy is a defeatist. =========== Majdur = Holocaust Revisionist Creep (english) by Isaac Ishmael 8:15pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Majdur conveniently forgets to note that a good number of those who actually died in the Holocaust in Poland were not the Zionists by any means but rather those in the Orthodox and Hassidic courts who rabidly refused to move from their land to anywhere safe - Palestine or otherwise. I commend Said as a pragmatist who realizes that the Arab states aren't going to move Israel into the sea and that it's simply bad strategy to try engaging in total war - unlike this idiot Majdur. He also realizes that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict parallels the moves of fascists in Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Italy, etc rather than simply denying the Holocaust and resting on idiots like Irving. ============= a nationalist by any other name (english) by cog dissonance 8:32pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Majdur is one of those folks who would rather see a nuclear holocaust kill everyone in the Middle East than see Jews and Palestinians living side by side in whatever country you want to call it. This must be true because the attempt to completely expel one side from the "holy" land would inevitably result in an absolute catastrophe - U.S./Israel bombing the crap out of Arabs/Palestinians, or Arabs/Palestinians waging all out war on Israel and perhaps somehow the U.S. or U.S. "interests." You will notice that Majdur never puts forth any VIABLE solution to this never-ending conflict. Thus, someone like Said who would merely be content with a return to pre-67 borders -- all of it, is considered a "defeatist." No doubt I must be a zionazi for stating this. Everyone who criticizes Israel is an anti-semite. Everyone who criticizes Palestine is a zionazi. Same bullshit, same fundamentalism. ========= other side of coin (english) by skip trippie 9:23pm Sun Mar 24 '02 in the end the poster of this article is no better then a stonch zionist. Ya the zionists are taking the land from the people that have been living there for eons. But thats water under the bridge. It's the people on both sides that take this hard line that will have to give in for killing of people to stop. Said seems to be one of the people that realizes this. ======== What Said stands for. (english) by al-Farabi 10:40pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Some of the criticisms of Said are valid. However, Said has written a great deal which contributes to an understanding of the plight of the Palestinians. Simply because he does not support ultra-violent struggle by other side, is no reason to discredit him. I think we need more advocates of non-violent struggle. More Gandhis, more Martin Luther Kings, more Tolstoys, and more Thoreau's, and we might be closer to peace. I agree that the Israeli Zionist strategy is one of occupation and imperialist exploitation. However, so was British policy in India. Gandhi successfully combatted British imperialism by non-violent means, and many Muslims embraced his philosophy of non-violent struggle. ========= Said, the Palestinian struggle and Madjur (english) by Tariq 11:22pm Sun Mar 24 '02 While there certainly has been considerable legitimate criticism of Said's positions in the past from other Palestinian and Arab progressives, any assertion that he is a "defeatist" is absurd. Indeed, Said's harsh criticism of the cronyism, graft, nepotism, and collaboration with the CIA by the PA leadership, is right on target, and mirrors sentiment expressed by every single Palestinian left organization inside occupied Palestine. And Said's criticism of the PA for its lack of spine in participating in the bankrupt Oslo 'peace' process, and continual toadying to the US, is also on target. This despite Said's own complicity in supporting the Arafat leadership domination of the PLO when he was a sitting member of the Palestine National Council. Incidentally, I'll be interested to see 'Comrade' Majdur post directly to IMC-Palestine now that it's online. www.jerusalem.indymedia.org But perhaps now having the opportunity for direct Palestinian feedback via that site from people actually engaged in the struggle daily against the Zionist occupation..(including actual participants in the armed struggle, and real members of the resistance groups he professess to support) might be a little too close for comfort for a keyboard poser sitting in the comfort of his bedroom somewhere outside occupied Palestine. ======== Majdur = Dan ... in New York City (english) by INFO 11:35pm Sun Mar 24 '02 Hi DAN !!!! More and more people will know that you are just some guy named Dan who lives in NYC. ======= dan=madjur? (english) by agraphologiasophia 11:59pm Sun Mar 24 '02 not from the posts I've read. you can do much better snooping simply by reading carefully. === LBO === Some people have made more out of this than what is right there, in front of your eyes. As they say, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Obviously anyone is free to criticize Israel, zionism, the Jewish state, the zionist entity, whatever. But that is not the same as the preoccupation with Yids evinced by some people on this list -- the provision of patterns or facts (even accurate ones) bereft of relevant context. By contrast, a preoccupation with self, if one is jewish, in the form of statements pertaining to jews, is a Different Thing. A preoccupation with jews if one is not jewish is creepy (even if adulatory, by the way). mbs ---------------------- Fucking weak, man. You just reiterated the insinuation, but are too fucking spineless to come right out and say it. Like all reactionary liberals you can't come out and make an arguement --you instead police the left through slandorous insinuations, whispers and sly suggestions. This is fucking repulsive. At least I can take comfort in being in the same company(in however small a manner) as other principled victims. But oh, the way you, de Long and former LBOer Leo Casey still manage to pass off your cold war liberalism and ideological defense and policing on behalf of empire as being somehow of the 'left' speaks volumes about how utterly fucked-up and skewed the political spectrum of the US is--spanning the whole vast gambit from far right to loony right. That an idiot like you Max, would read "an obsession with the Yids"(!) everytime a serious criticism of Israel was proffered --and on this list they've all been from an unambigously principled left perspective-- shows not only how in good working order your left-liberal politically-correct relfexes are, but also how utterly serviceable they are in defending the ruling ideological consensus. You may be an invertebrate Max, but you're also a fucking cop. Now the question remains why the actual leftist in this thread --John Mage, C.G.Estabrook, Justin S, joanna bujes-- who should have known better, didnt even notice(!?) or see fit to comment on Max' use of what is perhaps one of the most slimy underhanded means of silencing desperately needed discussion of Israel's (and by extension America's) racist terror and ethnic cleansing campaign against Palestenians. Hell, John Mage actually thought that Max was joking! Bizarre! Well now that he knows, will he stand by his earlier assertion that Max would be an idiot if his repulsive insinuations were meant sincerely? This is not a mere academic point. The use of these underhanded means of slandering those who would criticize Israel is perhaps THE reason for the utterly scandalous silence of the left --the American left in particular-- over the last thirty years.It has meant not only an almost complete absence of solidarity from the US left, but even at times actual contempt for the victims. And obviously this well worn method works -- witness the weak-minded and ever-clueless Chip Berlet propagating what was at first mere insinuation and suggestion as given fact! Nebbich! -pradeep --------------------- Have I every learned anything from anything you've posted? I think not. Killfile time... Brad DeLong -------------------- Pradeep seems to me generally correct here, without the ad hominems. The recent discussion of Cockburn on lbo-talk evinces a sort of antisemite-baiting that polices the bounds of acceptable debate, to avoid the "preoccupation" that a Chomsky shows (or is it a Different Thing with Chomsky?). When one comes to speak of Israel and American policy, one must never be -- as apparently Cockburn and Finkelstein, to their everlasting shame, occasionally are -- "bereft of relevant context." That would be to regard Israel as one would the state of some other racial group. --CGE ---------------------------- Over on FreeRepublic, everytime someone mentions bad politics in Africa, people seem to then have to comment on black crackheads or some such. The racial slide is what is objectionable. There are plenty of bad things to say about Israel as a state without jumping to link it to Jews in American society. Even the issue of the "Jewish lobby" is pretty irrelevant-- most of the support for Israel comes from military hawks and Christian fundamentalists. Jews just don't have either the votes or the money to outbid oil interests who could easily go the other way if other concerns didn't exist. Raving anti-semetic diatribes are posted by Bobby Fischer and it's mostly treated as a cutebizarro Harpers item, maybe analyzed as propaganda, but not treated on its own terms as a henious piece of racist hate mail. And what "silence" of the left on Israel? Almost every major left organization condems Israel's policies. The National Lawyers Guild, the major left legal organization of which a number of folks on this list are members (who disagree on a hell of a lot), has been consistenty and rather harshly anti-Israel for many years, at some membership cost due to its principled position. Nathan Newman nathan@newman.org ---------------------- I think limiting it to the Pentagon and the messianic right obscures the origins and present nature of the US-Israeli entanglement, which dates back to when the US replaced GB as the imperialist power in the ME - and elsewhere. Inheriting the British divide-and-rule structure of dual support for Arab and Jewish client states, the US soon found itself in the same predicament as the Brits, when Jabotinski's followers decided it was time to put Jews first and Brits became fair game. Although the blowback from Israel occasionally erupted in overt military action against the US, as in the 1967 USS Liberty incident and the incidents between the USMC and the Israeli invasion forces in Lebanon in 1981, its primary form has been covert. Israel controls US electoral politics through AIPAC and the ADL-B'nai Brith, and the US executive through widespread penetration of US intelligence and the military bureaucracy. The Jonathan Pollard affair revealed that Pollard had been acting on the instructions of much higher-placed moles, who have never been apprehended. And AIPAC's effectiveness is not just a function of the money it spends (it doesn't endorse pols), but its network of assets within the government, media, academia, etc., forming a cohesive, centrally controlled cadre. E.g. Turkey found out what an effective magic wand AIPAC was for unlocking the doors to the IMF, the DoS, and the EU, as well as for ending Western support for the PKK, when it entered a defence pact with Israel and found IMF support, the Baku-Ceyhan pipeline, and EU accession all falling into its lap in rapid succession. Finally, as I posted earlier, Jews get the sharp end of this wretched mess as much as anyone else, even though they may be ideologically subject to Likud[1] hegemony or the more radical messianism exported from the US. The early socialist settlers of the first two aliyahs got swept aside by the Ben-Gurion crowd, who in turn got sidelined by the Haganah and Stern terrorists, who consolidated their hold on Israeli politics by, among other things, flying in millions of new constituents from Ethiopia, Russia, etc., and are now getting Jews killed at a record rate. So the issue is not Jews, but as Jewish religion is the main component of Israeli colonialism, just as Islam is of jihadism, confusion easily - and intentionally - arises, giving ammunition to slanderers like Max and Chip. Hakki ------------------------------- Recall that Cockburn was mainlining the _Protocols of the Elders of Zion_: If anyone here wrote that the terror attack on the WTC by Muslims "raised discussions of the posture of American Muslims to an acrid level," I would be denouncing them as racist swine--and I don't think I would find any objections here. But somehow it does seem to be different when it's "the Jews"--and I think pradeep and C. G. Estabrook need to ask themselves why... Brad DeLong ------------------------------ Hyperbole like this would just be silly, were it not an example of antisemite-baiting, as mentioned. It is in fact true that "the terror attack on the WTC by Muslims raised discussions of the posture of American Muslims to an acrid level." It did a good bit more -- it put a lot of them in jail. And one is not a racist swine for noting the facts. Similarly, Cockburn was simply reporting what is the case when he wrote that "there are a number of stories [he gives examples] sloshing around the news now that have raised discussion of Israel and of the posture of American Jews to an acrid level." And he ran afoul of only the language cops. I believe that Pradeep and I are suggesting that it shouldn't be different when it's the Jews. --CGE ----------------------- e Jews. --CGE The "language cops" took exception when Ace started talking about "The Jews," as if they were a homogenous and powerful entity. You did it here too. Whether intentional or not, it bears the scent of anti-Semitic discourse. Even though this exchange has gotten pretty nasty, I haven't intervened to (try to) stop it, because under the invective there are some real issues - like the relations between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism, and the use of anti-Semitism to police discourse (which works several ways, it seems: not only the classic fashion of foreclosing criticism of Israeli behavior, but also invoking that classic repressive use to defend turns of phrase like "The Jews...."). I'll probably run out of patience with the exchange soon, though. Doug ------------------- Let me get this straight, Doug: one cannot use the phrase "the Jews" because it might imply that they are "a homogeneous and powerful force" -- and that "bears the scent of anti-Semitic discourse"? I'd suggest that the heresy-hunters here have come up with examples of ever more exquisite politico-linguistic sin. The effect is to serve the goal announced by Abba Eban long ago: "one of the chief tasks of any dialogue with the Gentile world is to prove that the distinction between anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism is not a distinction at all." Let's consider the original sinful passage (from Cockburn) with another noun, and a few changes (for "proper context"). Does its meaninglessness expose Cockburn's anti-semitic subtext? Or does its rather banal truth raise the question of why its observations might cause alarm? The point of Cockburn's column was hypocrisy about racism in high places in America. "It's supposedly the third rail in journalism even to have a discussion of how much the Wasps do control the economy. Since three of the prime founders of Wall Street were Wasps who grew up within fifty miles of each other in New York, it's reckoned as not so utterly beyond the bounds of propriety to talk about Waspish power in Wall Street, though people still stir uneasily. [It has been said] that even if the Wasps don't control the economy overall, it is certainly true to say that they control discussion of the economy in the media here. Certainly, there are a number of stories sloshing around the news now that have raised discussion of the US and of the posture of American Wasps to an acrid level. The perpetrator of the Oklahoma City bombing was a former soldier, Waspish, with a record of baiting colleagues of Semitic origins, and with the intent to blame the bombing on Muslim terrorists. Rocketing around the web and spilling into the press are many stories about American federal police spies in the wake of 9/11. On various accounts, they were trailing Atta and his associates, knew what was going to happen but did nothing about it, or were simply spying on US citizens. Finally, there's Bush's bloody repression of Middle Eastern peoples in Turkey and Iraq, and Enron's powerful role in Bush's foreign and domestic policy..." So Cockburn is surely an antisemite... CGE -------------- And soemtimes it seems like critics of Zionism accept Eban's terms of debate completely. I don't, and wish other people wouldn't. This isn't heresy hunting; it's a matter of trying to stay out of the muck. Doug ---------- Let me see if I understand, Since I joined this list I have learned that: Robert Fisk is a racist Norman Finkelstein is a Nazi Anyone who opposed the bombing of Afghanistan is at the same level as the raving anti-Semite Bobby Fisher Alexander Cockburn is an anti-Semitic, right-wing survivalist. Wow! Learn something new every day when you subscribe to a left LISTSERV! Déjenme decirles, a riesgo de parecer ridículo, que el revolucionario verdadero está guiado por grandes sentimientos de amor. Che ----------- Hey CGE, You will forgive me for changing the subject header. Or maybe not. No matter. Do you really think I'm a 'cold war liberal'? That I automatically react negatively to 'serious criticism of Israel' or seek to 'police the bounds of acceptable debate'? That I stigmatize Finkelstein for a focus on the ME? I have to wonder about your capacity for elementary reading comprehension. (About others' there is no ambiguity, nor any point in dialog.) Talk about insinuations. But thanks so much for separating the ad hominem's from the 'generally correct.' I would say the real effort to 'police,' however pathetic and transparent, comes from descriptions of those critical of zionism as uncritical, solely when we object to a creepy fixation on jews or judaism, if not worse. In the anti-Israel crusade, there is no room for such considerations. Too PC, I guess. Your last sentence obliges me to ask, do you really regard Israel as analogous to "the state of some other racial group"? See what I mean? mbs --------- Max-- Forgive me for not being terribly interested in whether you are a cold war liberal, whether you automatically react negatively to 'serious criticism of Israel' or seek to 'police the bounds of acceptable debate,' or whether you stigmatize Finkelstein for a focus on the ME. There certainly are people who fit these descriptions, and there certainly are attempts -- even on the "left" -- to see that things said about other polities are not said about Israel. But then you admit as much, when you deny that Israel can be regarded as analogous to "the state of some other racial group." Regards, CGE -------- you were interested enough to say it was "generally correct." but evidently not sufficiently interested to defend those assertions. I certainly do deny that Israel is the state of a racial group, but I am weary of rehashing that story. I do grant that in the vein of race being a social construct, to a lot of people jews are a racial group. Israel is a jewish state, so by that reasoning Israel is a racialist state. --mbs Max-- Forgive me for not being terribly interested in whether you are a cold war liberal, whether you automatically react negatively to 'serious criticism of Israel' or seek to 'police the bounds of acceptable debate,' or whether you stigmatize Finkelstein for a focus on the ME. There certainly are people who fit these descriptions, and there certainly are attempts -- even on the "left" -- to see that things said about other polities are not said about Israel. But then you admit as much, when you deny that Israel can be regarded as analogous to "the state of some other racial group." Regards, CGE ------------ Given what i have seen on this list, and in response to far less or no provocation, i am not inclined to think i went over the top in re to Max. Max said: "the preoccupation with Yids on this list by some people creeps me out." Now i am absolutely amazed that this sort of open and disgusting antisemite baiting can occur on a LEFT list when the subject of Israel comes up-- and be met with silence! I found it particularly slimy as it came right after I merely forwarded a relevant piece by Finkelstein to an already existing thread. It would have been bad enough if he had said the 'preoccupation with jews on this list creeps him out" -- but no, he said a preoccupation with the "Yids" --directly insinuating outright vile antisemitism. Furthermore, I was utterly shocked that no one seemed to notice. Amazing! I have been on a few left lists that are NOT predominately American and that span the wide left from social democrats to anarchists and on which I coudn't imagine someone making this sort of comment without being unceremoniously told to fuck-off. At some point the American LEFT has got to stop being so damn apolegetic and cringing --to stop tiptoeing around in order to avoid being labelled antisemitic. Indeed, its amazing the degree to which being an ANTI-'anti-semite' substitutes for being a principled anti-racist in N. America. Practically every bigot in N. America boasts to being the best most avowed anti-'anti-semite',regardless of how they express themselves in regards to other ethnic grps. Hell, in the US in particular, bigots love to use the specter of antisemitism to ideologically police or beat down Blacks(and others) as well as critics of US policy -- and the US lefts' often sordid complicity in all this merits a little more than embarrassed silence. The irony in all this though, not that Max is sharp enough to pick up on it, is that the people who have been most obsessed with 'Jews' on this list have actually been Max and de Long. Everytime time someone criticizes Israel or goes beyong the safe, permitted liberal framework of calling for 'peace and love' in the M.E. you just know these two see the words 'Jew' and 'Yid' -- that their liberal paranoia predisposes them to see NAZI antisemitic carictures with every post in solidarity with palestenians that isnt sufficiently cringing enough, or to read Z.O.G. every time someone discusses the ideological and political roots of Zionism's colonial racism. I mean my god, look at the bizarre hyberbole that has been coming out of deLong -- "Protocols of the Elders of Zion"! Neither of these two can read "Israel" in a critical post without seeing "Yid". The REAL left on this list has better things to do than pander to this paranoid liberal DP drivel. -p ------------------------- " . . . Everytime time someone criticizes Israel or goes beyong the safe, permitted liberal framework of calling for 'peace and love' in the M.E. you just know these two see the words 'Jew' and 'Yid' -- that their liberal paranoia predisposes them to see NAZI antisemitic carictures with every post in solidarity with palestenians that isnt sufficiently cringing enough, or to read Z.O.G. every time someone discusses the ideological and political roots of Zionism's colonial racism.. . . " . . . is easily refuted by any unhysterical survey of posts on this list. Find an Israel/zionism/palestine thread, then check to see if I or BDL jump on critics of Israel (is there anything else here?), as anti- semites or Nazis no less. What's really going on is: there are no uncritical supporters of Israel on this list who post. There are supporters of a two-state solution. But some who oppose a two-state solution augment their weak literary skills with descriptions of their targets in the most extreme terms. Their ad hominem argument (you have accused "us" [really 'me'] of being an anti-semite, you shit) is an attempt to isolate. Like the Repugs describing every Democrat who gets in their way as liberal. Or ultra-lefts describing liberals as Nazis. This sort of "criticism" is really invective. Sometimes it gets creepy. Henwood explained the Cockburn thing that provoked CGE. informational note to unrabid non-Jews: I don't consider "yid" to be an anti-semitic term, especially if *I* say it. Obviously the speaker and the context make all the difference. mbs --------------------- pradeep wrote: Exactly. Especially a US 'left' listserv with a high portion of lib Democrats. -------------------- I started this list with the fond hope that people who were more or less on the same side could talk to each other across various ideological divides. I'm now coming to understand that the "archaic" definition of "fond" ("naively credulous or foolish") still applies. Doug ------------------ . . .and yet you've still not pointed to anything on this list that indicates preoccupation with the "Yids" by me -- or any one else. C'mon Max, the archives are still there. Until something aside from sleazy indirect insinuation from you is proffered my pt. about your paranoid liberal obsessions with reading "Yids" at every turn, and the slimy tactics you're prone to, stands. And until then I have no intention with arguing with a cop like you anymore. I now have something in the archives to point to prove my point --do you? <end of my discussion with you -p -------------------------- I bridle when people start talking about "the Jews" in aws that are redolent of other ways that we have been discussed in other times and plavces. At the same time, I can't agree with you about the power and significance of the Israel lobby. It's full-funded, well-organized, and extremely effective, and has the support of almost all of organzed, and I emphasize _organized_ American Jewry--the poll data show that the majority of AMerican Jews are several steps to the left of the institutional community they support. But Nathan, you are a sociologist. You know that votes count, but organization decides, as we say in Chicago. My rabbi at my atheist humanist congregation here hasd a lot more weight when he gets up and gives a talk at the oulput about how we support Israel while it is murdering Palestinean children and bulldozing Palestinian houses, etc., than I do when I walk out. Last time I did that was when my parents' rabbi, an Auschwitz survivor, gavea rousing sermon in favor of the invasion of Lebanon. The American Jewish community is a problem. It may not have the power to beat big oil, if big oil decidedto put its weight behing peace, but that aint likely. It has the power to harden the discussion and make it hard for any politician to stand up for decency. Who was that Arab-American Congressman whom they destroyed? James Something, began with an A. Other Congressmen remember that. Now, I think the American Jewish community is our problem, that is, the problem of progressive Jews, just as it's the black community's problem to deal with Farrakhan and pervasive anti-Semitism among blacks. Non-Jews should be sensitive to how it sounds and who can talk, I agree. But there's no point in pretending there's no problem to deal with. Raving anti-semetic diatribes are posted by Bobby Fischer and it's mostly treated as a cutebizarro Harpers item, maybe analyzed as propaganda, but not treated on its own terms as a henious piece of racist hate mail. Well, it's not cute, but it is bizarre,a nd what would you suggest by way of serious analysis? I mean. the man's a fruitcake, everyone has known that for years, he's not likely to influence anyone with that crap. ------------- And what "silence" of the left on Israel? Almost every major left organization condems Israel's policies. The National Lawyers Guild, the major left legal organization of which a number of folks on this list are members (who disagree on a hell of a lot), has been consistenty and rather harshly anti-Israel for many years, at some membership cost due to its principled position. -------- It's not like the Guild is representative of a wide spectrum of opinion. DSA is pretty wishy-washy at best on this. jks --------- ----- Original Message ----- From: "Justin Schwartz" <jkschw@hotmail.com There are plenty of bad things to say about Israel as a state without jumping to link it to Jews in American society. Even the issue of the "Jewish lobby" is pretty irrelevant-- most of the support for Israel comes from military hawks and Christian fundamentalists. Jews just don't have either the votes or the money to outbid oil interests who could easily go the other way if other concerns didn't exist. --------- -I can't agree with you about the power and significance of the -Israel lobby. It's full-funded, well-organized, and extremely effective, and -has the support of almost all of organzed, and I emphasize _organized_ -American Jewry...You know that votes count, but -organization decides, as we say in Chicago. ---------- I'm sorry but there is a real historic amnesia about how recent the full-blooded support for Israel from the United States dates from. While the US supported Israel's founding in 1948, so did the Soviet Union, to an extent that much of the Israeli military then (which was dominated by the Israeli left) initially saw their interests more with the SU than with the United States. The Soviet Union rapidly decided that they were more interested in making alliances with the emerging left nationalisms of Nasser and the Baathists in Syria and Iraq, but then the US was also making its bid for support of those regimes, including confronting Britain and France and Israel over the Suez invasion planned by all three in 1956.Our orientation in that period was cultivating strong relationships with Arab states like Saudi Arabia by deals were possible and installing our allies in Iran by coup when necessary. The 1967 war was fought largely with non-American weapons, since France was Israel's major military benefactor at that point and the US was supplying a rather small amount of loans (not grants) in any year. It was only with Nixon and the 1973 war that US support for Israel ramped up-- the modern support for Israel was the convergence of the pro-Israeli "Scoop Jackson" wing of Democrats with neo-realists in the Nixon camp and the new Jewish neoconservatives who were just moving into the Republican camp. It was not "organized Jewry" but organized neoconservative Jewry who figured out that a strategic alliance with fundamentalist Christians and military hawks could deliver the permanent support for Israel they desired. It took a few years for full delivery of that alliance; Carter was supportive of Israel generally but denounced the West Bank settlements and pushed for return of the Sinai to Egypt in the Camp David negotiations. Note the article below on how many in Israel have less than a fond memory of Carter. It was only with Reagan's administration that full-throated unwavering support of Israel became the policy of the United States as the neoconservative Jewish, Christian fundamentalist, military hawk alliance took over US foreign policy. Now I don't dispute that most Jews, especially organized Jewish groups, support Israel, but that is different from saying the "Jewish Lobby" runs US policy, especially when that is said without regard to the other non-Jewish groups, with a lot more influence, who have their own interests in Israel. And what "silence" of the left on Israel? Almost every major left organization condems Israel's policies. The National Lawyers Guild, the major left legal organization of which a number of folks on this list are members (who disagree on a hell of a lot), has been consistenty and rather harshly anti-Israel for many years, at some membership cost due to its principled position. -It's not like the Guild is representative of a wide spectrum of opinion. DSA -is pretty wishy-washy at best on this. First, the Guild had as large a membership in the 80s as DSA (both around 10,000 members), so while it's a professional slice of the left, I don't think it is necessarily unrepresentative. Yes, DSA was particularly wishy-washy, but they are not the only groups on the left and many progressives condemned Israeli's policies over the years. Remember that Jesse Jackson was rather prominently pro-Palestinian during his runs for the Presidency and many people supported him despite (or because of) those positions. So what silence? -- Nathan Newman --- Get the word out Shmuel Katz Jerusalem Post, 2001 (December 17) - When Menachem Begin paid his first visit to president Jimmy Carter as prime minister, Carter spent much of the time pressing Begin to "freeze the settlements." Begin's reply was simple: "You, Mr. President, have in the United States a number of places with names like Bethlehem, Shiloh, and Hebron, and you haven't the right to tell prospective residents in those places that they are forbidden to live there. Just like you, I have no such right in my country. Every Jew is entitled to settle wherever he pleases." Nevertheless the Carter administration launched a veritable propaganda campaign to spread the "ruling" that Jewish settlement in the West Bank - that is, Judea and Samaria - and in the Gaza Strip were illegal (in addition to being an "obstacle to peace"). Most of the media willingly fell into line. Following opposition and protest from various quarters, the Carter administration recognized that if one talks of illegality one must provide chapter and verse. Thus the State Department came up with the Fourth Geneva Convention as proof. But the Fourth Geneva Convention proves nothing of the sort. It proves the opposite. The Fourth Geneva Convention does not apply to Israel and its presence in Judea, Samaria, and the Gaza district. The convention defines itself strictly in its second clause: "The present convention shall apply to cases of partial or total occupation of the territory of a High Contracting Party." Judea, Samaria, and Gaza, which Israel occupied in 1967, were not territories of a High Contracting Party. Judea and Samaria did not belong to Trans-Jordan nor did Gaza belong to Egypt. In the war of Pan-Arab aggression in 1948, Trans-Jordan had invaded Judea and Samaria, occupied them and, in blatant illegality, annexed them. It then celebrated the annexation by changing its name to Jordan. Egypt had similarly annexed the Gaza district. The annexations of course gave Trans-Jordan and Egypt no rights of sovereignty. Israel's presence in the West Bank and Gaza is perfectly legal. Indeed, the last sovereign of both areas was the Ottoman Turkish Empire. Defeated in World War I, it had relinquished sovereignty over vast areas including Palestine; Palestine was handed over to the British to govern as a trustee - a mandatory for the purpose of bringing about the "reconstitution of the Jewish National Home." When Britain retired from the Mandate, Jewish historical rights which the Mandate had recognized were not canceled; and no new sovereign ever took over in Judea and Samaria or in Gaza. The legal adviser of the State Department, called upon to defend the Carter claim that Jewish settlement in the West Bank and Gaza was illegal, got over the difficulty by simply ignoring Article 2 of the convention. In his opinion he didn't even mention it. He loftily declared that "the principles of the convention appear applicable whether or not Jordan and Egypt possessed legitimate sovereign rights in respect of the territories." No less. Further on in his statement, he markedly avoided mentioning that in 1967 it was once again the aggressors of 1948 who attacked Israel (then confined to the narrow armistice lines of 1949). He did mention the Six Day War of 1967, but how? He wrote: "During the June 1967 war, Israeli forces occupied Gaza, the Sinai peninsula, the West Bank, and the Golan Heights." That was all. Not a word about who started the war or about its flaunted gruesome purpose: the destruction of Israel. The continuing smear on Israel on the part of the government was brought to an end by the successor administration of Ronald Reagan, who personally had strongly and repeatedly denounced it. His administration issued a declaration that Israeli settlements were not illegal (though they were regarded as "an obstacle to peace"). A prominent member of the administration, law professor Eugene Rostow - himself a former assistant secretary of state - subsequently wrote: "Israel has a stronger claim to the West Bank than any other nation or would-be nationÉ [and] the same legal right to settle the West Bank, the Gaza strip and east Jerusalem as it has to settle Haifa or west Jerusalem." But the damage was done; and never did Israel launch a counter-campaign to lay bare the monstrous falsity of Arab historical claims, their grave annihilatory intent towards Israel, the skewed misleading interpretation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and the effort to acquit the Arabs of their aggression. Never a serious reply to Arab fabrications point by point so as to combat the widespread ignorance among even our own people. Never an educational campaign to demonstrate the unique roots of our people in Eretz Yisrael. The policies of government after government encouraged the Arabs to believe that we were weakening in the belief of the justice of our cause, and on the other hand played down the repeated declarations of Arab leaders, from Abdel Nasser to Yasser Arafat, that their objective was the demolition of Israel. Our leaders talked of compromise. The Arabs saw compromise as a station on the road to complete Israeli surrender - something which, but for the hardening of Arafat's heart, almost occurred last year. But the change that has taken place in the international political climate since the US tragedy of September 11, which has helped people abroad to understand the unique nature of our place in the world, gives us a chance to meet squarely the bitter struggle ahead of us. Moreover, a great majority of the people in Israel has been shocked into recognizing the Arabs' lethal purpose. The government however must realize that it is essential that the physical, the military struggle, be accompanied by a sane national policy of information - to tell our people, and the rest of the world, at every step of the way, the whys and the wherefores of our existence, our actions and our beliefs. ---------- So what? Israel annexed west Jerusalem in 48 and the whole of it in 67, although it was clearly demarcated as a corpus separatum. The point is, UN resolution 181 or 303 are not a basis for peace. 242 is. You can't have peace by expulsing the Palestinians. Newly-formed postcolonial states inevitably have border disputes. Israel, as the region's biggest power, has the capacity to resolve these disputes in a civilized manner, using Washington's money to smooth ruffled feathers. But it chooses instead to grab the money, the arms, the land, the water, and anything else it can grab, and damn the consequences. Hakki ----------------------------- Again discussion of Israel, and the supposedly influential rôle of American Jews. Yes, there sometimes is an anti-Semitic way of perceiving that rôle, and yes, that is to condemn. But the more important source of support for Israel comes out of something distinctively American, and mostly protestant. Maybe my origins in the rural Midwest put me in closer touch with that strand of opinion. It's not just the religious right as such that is responsible for this reflexive feeling many Americans have that it is simply appropriate for there to be an Israel. The religious right articulates a feeling that has a broader base, and organizes the support where it needs organization. Hence, though Justin is right in pointing out the following, this is a secondary problem. -- "At the same time, I can't agree with you about the power and significance of the Israel lobby. It's full-funded, well-organized, and extremely effective, and has the support of almost all of organized, and I emphasize _organized_ American Jewry--the poll data show that the majority of American Jews are several steps to the left of the institutional community they support." I suspect that the Israel lobby's influence is concentrated in places where parts of the left also are a little more numerous, and thus tends to influence the left. I live now in New York, and think New York is a bit more under this malign influence. Hence I think the following exchange between Nathan and Justin misses the mark -- ------------ And what "silence" of the left on Israel? Almost every major left organization condemns Israel's policies. The National Lawyers Guild, the major left legal organization of which a number of folks on this list are members (who disagree on a hell of a lot), has been consistently and rather harshly anti-Israel for many years, at some membership cost due to its principled position. ---------------- It's not like the Guild is representative of a wide spectrum of opinion. DSA is pretty wishy-washy at best on this. ------------------ Most left criticism of Israel seems to address atrocities the Israelis commit against the Palestinians. This criticism seeks to counter the media's ceaseless flogging the news about suicide bombings to the exclusion of the greater death toll among Palestinian civilians. (And that form of media bias goes back into the sixties and fifties, long before the US alliance with Israel became so tight.) Instead, a more important criticism of Israel, which the left ought to be making, would challenge the fundamental legitimacy of a state based on a definition of "peoplehood" primarily around a criterion of descent. That is and always has been racism, going back, institutionally at least to the passage of the Law of Return. Demanding repeal of that law as a component of a peace settlement is a sound left demand. So too, abolition of the official rôle of the orthodox rabbinate. Christopher Rhoades Dÿkema ----------- I am well aware that the aggressive organized American Jewish support for any aweful thing the Israeli govt do dates from 1967. Did I say anything to the contrary? Moreover, this is not news, it's not even seriously disputed anywhere, so far as I know. What's your point? ------------ It was only with Nixon and the 1973 war that US support for Israel ramped up-- the modern support for Israel was the convergence of the pro-Israeli "Scoop Jackson" wing of Democrats with neo-realists in the Nixon camp and the new Jewish neoconservatives who were just moving into the Republican camp. It was not "organized Jewry" but organized neoconservative Jewry who figured out that a strategic alliance with fundamentalist Christians and military hawks could deliver the permanent support for Israel they desired. ---------------------- Ah, herewe disagree on two things. The 73 war solidified the rally round the Mogen David effect, but it was created in 67. I remember it very well. I was only, what 10 at the time, but I and everyother Jewisj boy in America all of a sudden started playing Moye Dayan, the synagogues were full of evil Eyptians propaganda. I distinctly recall my Hebrew school curriculum--in place, with textbooks--full of crap about the land without people for the people without a land, making the desert bloom, bla bla bla, and this was all well before 73 because I was bar mitzpha in 1970, and didn't go to Hebrew school after I started HS in 1971. I swallowed all this stuff then, as did my parents, I don't want to imply I was a premature antiZionist. In my case it collapsed after a single argument in my first year in grad school (1979, when a classmate who was not a leftist forcefully pointed out to me that I could hardly reconcile my emerging Marxism with support for Israelu colonialism. AFterthat talk I went home and the next morning called the UJA, asked if the money I'd pledged was going to the settlements, when they said it was, cancelled the pledge. With my parents, it took the Invasion of Lebanon. Course they never ededup as far to the left as me. ---------------- It was only with Reagan's administration that full-throated unwavering support of Israel became the policy of the United States as the neoconservative Jewish, Christian fundamentalist, military hawk alliance took over US foreign policy. ----------- Doesn't alter my point that tyhe organized American Jewish community is in there pitching and matters a lot. ------------ Now I don't dispute that most Jews, especially organized Jewish groups, support Israel, but that is different from saying the "Jewish Lobby" runs US policy, especially when that is said without regard to the other non-Jewish groups, with a lot more influence, who have their own interests in Israel. ---------- I didn't say that it did, that would be silly. -------- And what "silence" of the left on Israel? Almost every major left organization condems Israel's policies. The National Lawyers Guild ------------ -It's not like the Guild is representative of a wide spectrum of opinion. DSA -is pretty wishy-washy at best on this. ------------ First, the Guild had as large a membership in the 80s as DSA (both around 10,000 members), so while it's a professional slice of the left, I don't think it is necessarily unrepresentative. Yes, DSA was particularly wishy-washy, but they are not the only groups on the left and many progressives condemned Israeli's policies over the years. ---------Well, we (the Guild) are not so large now, though DSA probably is almost as large. Many leftists have condemned Israeli policies, but it's hardly as unanimous as left principles would indicate. ----------- Remember that Jesse Jackson was rather prominently pro-Palestinian during his runs for the Presidency and many people supported him despite (or because of) those positions. ----------- I was very active in the RC in both 1984 and 1988, and just speaking for Michigan, Jackson's pro-Plaestinian views were not a plus in getting white support for his candidacies. I was rathera popint man on the issue, as people figured that because I wa Jewisj, I could say negative things about Israel's policies in public. I caught a lot of flack for it, a LOT of flack. James Abourazek, that was the ex-Congressmen's name. Wrote a book, didn't he? Something about daring to speak out. jks ----------- yosh: I agree with Max that there should *not* be a fixation on Jews & Judaism in criticisms of Israel & Zionism. The anti-Jewish fixation on Jews & Judaism (e.g., the Jews control the American media, the Jewish lobby has hijacked US Middle-East policy, etc.) often stems from an antipathy toward traditional Marxist (and other leftist) explanations of US policy on Israel and the Middle East in general (e.g., Israel has become a sub-imperialist state and/or a US client state and played a variety of useful roles in the Middle East and beyond serving the American Empire) -- an antipathy exemplified by the following article by Nathan Jones: ***** Lobby Watch National Capital Insiders Vote AIPAC, Israel's American Lobby, Second Most Powerful Interest Group in Washington By Nathan Jones JANUARY/FEBRUARY 1998, Pages 65-66 "A forthcoming edition of Fortune magazine ranks the American Israel Public Affairs Committee as the second most powerful interest group in Washington...The pro-Israel lobby, which the magazine called 'calculatedly quiet,' has for years been successful in encouraging members of Congress and the administration to support U.S. foreign aid to Israel and other issues related to the U.S.-Israel relationship." --Daniel Kurtzman, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, December 1997. For two generations American diplomats in the Middle East have listened to the same complaint. "How is it possible for a lobby, based upon only two percent of the American population, to take over U.S. Middle East policy completely and also to have a strong and sometimes decisive influence on U.S. foreign policy in the rest of the world?" It's not an idle question. For Middle Easterners the matter boils down to "who is the enemy?" If the pro-Israel tilt in U.S. policy is solely the result of smart politics by a well-heeled, well-organized and highly disciplined American religious or ethnic minority, presumably funded at least in part by the Israeli government, it's worthwhile to join the influence battle in Washington to persuade U.S. elected officials to support an even-handed policy in the best interests of the United States. On the other hand, if the other 98 percent of Americans believe there is some hidden reason why a tilt in favor of the 4.5 million Jews in Israel and against the 200 million Arab Muslims and Christians in the Middle East is in the U.S. national interest, then no amount of counter-lobbying will do any good. Informed Americans need only point to a world map, which shows that the 60 percent of the world's petroleum (and about an equal percentage of natural gas) found in the Middle East all lies under Muslim lands. So why would it be in the U.S. interest to side with the Jewish state which has fought five wars with those Muslim lands--doubling the territory it controls in the process--and which presently seems to be looking for ways to fight another one? One reason Middle Easterners remain confused is that it's popular on U.S. university campuses to blame the U.S. for Israeli excesses. If Israelis sell arms to right-wing military dictators in Central America, or sell stolen U.S. missile defense or military aircraft technology to communist China, the reasoning goes, it must be because the U.S. wants them to. Most of those who preach this line are Marxist-oriented Jewish faculty members, like MIT linguistics professor Noam Chomsky, who seem to find it more bearable to blame the human rights crimes committed by successive Israeli governments on the United States than on the Jewish state itself. It's a theory that has also been picked up by at least two left-leaning Palestinian faculty members at U.S. universities. Whatever their original motives for wanting to believe this, professionally it's safer and more "politically correct" for faculty on U.S. campuses to criticize the U.S. than it is to criticize Israel. (Exactly the same caution applies to American journalism, but that's another subject.) In any case, when Americans point out to Middle Eastern critics that if the U.S. government wants arms sold to renegade nations, there are plenty of U.S. manufacturers who would be happy to do the job, the discussion comes back to the first question. "Do you mean to say that the U.S. lets Israel do all of these things solely because of U.S. domestic politics?" The answer, of course, is yes! Now some corroborating evidence has come from Washington insiders as a group. In its Dec. 8 issue, the respected business magazine Fortune has published the results of a survey it commissioned among Capitol Hill insiders to rank-order the 120 most powerful interest groups in the United States. It's possible that when the Fortune editors got the idea of having Democratic pollster Mark Mellman and Republican pollster Bill McInturff mail out 2,165 queries to members of Congress, top congressional aides, top officers of lobbying organizations and professional lobbyists, they weren't thinking about how the results might affect America's most publicity-shy special interest, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), with its $15 million budget, 150 employees, and its five or six registered lobbyists who make a personal visit to every one of 535 members of Congress at least once a year. However, AIPAC is so well-known inside the Beltway that when anyone refers to "The Lobby," no one asks, "Which one?" In fact this highly professional organization is backed up by a group called "The Council of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations," which serves as the coordinating committee for efforts on behalf of Israel by 52 national U.S. Jewish organizations, several of them with budgets larger than AIPAC's. But over the years, when AIPAC chairmen or presidents have boasted about which powerful members of Congress they have brought down, it has been only in closed membership sessions. Victims they claim include two former chairmen of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Arkansas Democrat J. William Fulbright and Illinois Republican Charles Percy, and Sen. Roger Jepsen (R-IA). Among House members they've helped defeat are Paul Findley (R-IL) and Paul N. (Pete) McCloskey (R-CA), both of whom have become prominent campaigners to curb AIPAC's power. Named the most powerful special interest by the 329 Washington insiders who returned the polling forms was the American Association of Retired Persons. This is no surprise, given the fact that the 33-million-member organization's membership card is what most elderly Americans reach for when asked to prove their eligibility for "senior citizen" discounts on everything from medicines and museum tickets to rail and airfares. A look at the runner-up organizations and the constituencies they represent, however, puts into perspective the incredible power of AIPAC, which claims no more than 50,000 paid-up members (at $50 a year). In numerical order these are the AFL-CIO, the National Federation of Independent Business, the Association of Trial Lawyers, the National Rifle Association, the Christian Coalition, the American Medical Association, and the National Education Association. Next on the list are realtors (11), bankers (12), manufacturers (13), government employees (14), the National Chamber of Commerce (15), Veterans of Foreign Wars (16), farmers (17), filmmakers (18), homebuilders (19) and broadcasters (20). In an article accompanying the list, Fortune writer Jeffrey Birnbaum notes that "the powerhouses of persuasion aren't very visible above the Washington waterline, but they are very big, and very menacing." The writer claims also that "while donations are still crucial...they aren't the only keys to the kingdom...These days interest organizations are valued more for the votes they can deliver." Birnbaum admits, however, that "three of the top 10 organizations owe their high rankings to their substantial campaign contributions: the Association of Trial Lawyers of America, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and the American Medical Association." This puts AIPAC in the unique position of having several million dollars to spend on helping or hurting candidates in each two-year election cycle, and also of being able to mobilize a large percentage of America's 5.5 million Jews into a one-issue voting bloc in support of candidates deemed friendly to Israel. While positioned at the top of the power structure, at present AIPAC executives are deeply worried about a legal case against their organization that has been working its way through the U.S. federal courts since January 1989. It will be argued before the U.S. Supreme Court on Jan. 14, and a decision is expected to be announced by July 1998. Summarized, the suit charges that although AIPAC is functioning as a "political committee" raising and spending funds to get members of Congress elected or defeated, it is not complying with the laws that require such organizations to disclose to the Federal Election Commission where they get their funds, and how they spend them. The seven complainants in the case, all retired U.S. government officials, decline to speculate publicly on what they believe disclosure of AIPAC's finances will reveal. But many observers suspect that much of the lobbying money at the organization's disposal is raised by tax-exempt organizations in the U.S., ostensibly for other purposes such as planting trees in Israel, or may be Israeli government funding finding its way into the U.S. political system by illegal means. They point out that when several hundred thousand dollars in Chinese government money found its way into the U.S. elections in 1996, the nation was scandalized. But several million pro-Israel dollars has been available to AIPAC and to the dozens of political action committees founded and directed by members of AIPAC's board of directors and their relatives in every U.S. national cycle since the late 1970s. Whatever the U.S. Supreme Court decides should be done about Israel's powerful U.S. lobby, the Washington insiders' verdict is in. The second most powerful lobby in America certainly is powerful enough to dominate U.S. Middle East policy. In fact, if presidents and congressmen wanted to vote unconditional military and economic support to Israel, there would be no need to create such a rich and powerful lobby to bribe or browbeat them into doing so. And if Arabs ask what should be done about it, the answer is simple. If the U.S. remains unable to reform its own campaign finance system, six million Muslim Americans and two million Christian Arab Americans, backed by 22 Arab nations, ought to be able to "fight fire with fire." Nathan Jones is a free-lance writer who covers U.S. and Canadian affairs. <washington-report.org/backissues/0198/9801065.htm ***** Non-Jewish leftists -- especially Arab leftists -- have an obligation to stand up against anti-Jewish opinions -- not just brazenly anti-Jewish conspiracy theories but also widely accepted views like Nathan Jones'. Jewish leftists, in turn, have an obligation to stand up against AIPAC and other Zionist leaders who claim to represent American Jewry, just as anti-racist whites have an obligation to stand up against white supremacists. ------------------------------- At 01:46 AM 03/24/2002 -0500, Nathan wrote: Over on FreeRepublic, everytime someone mentions bad politics in Africa, people seem to then have to comment on black crackheads or some such. The racial slide is what is objectionable. Not the same. Following 1967, a large proportion of American Jews did come out in support of Israel's policies in the middle east and did support and agitate for U.S. military and financial support. And, their overall attitude was that the arabs are backward scum who could be treated by the "advanced/cultured" jews in Israel any damned way they liked. There are plenty of bad things to say about Israel as a state without jumping to link it to Jews in American society. Even the issue of the "Jewish lobby" is pretty irrelevant-- most of the support for Israel comes from military hawks and Christian fundamentalists. Jews just don't have either the votes or the money to outbid oil interests who could easily go the other way if other concerns didn't exist. AIPAC, AIPAC, AIPAC, AIPAC, AIPAC But you're also right about the hawks and the xtian right. You and I may be aware that Israel's current stance would be impossible without the U.S., but in addition to that there is a problem with Israel's insistence that all jews, except self-hating jews, are zionists. In the early days of zionism, it was pointed out that a political zionist policy could have serious repercussions on jews world-wide. This has already happened: in 48, when 75% of the Palestinian population was cleansed from Palestine, the neighboring Arab states, expelled their jewish populations in retaliation. More of this may happen in the future. Am I an anti-semite? No. Will the U.S. population at large be able to distinguish jews from zionists if this situation changes for the worse? I doubt it. Will the U.S. government allow the "jews" to take the fall if the situation in the middle east does not play out as planned? I'll let you answer that one. Joanna --------------- You dismiss everything Hakki says because he is Turkish? You think because someone lives in a repressive state, they cannot criticize the situation in another state nor speak on behalf of liberty and democracy? It's not funny; it's juvenile. Joanna ---------- Dear Joanna, please don't be so literal. I dismiss Hakki because he's wedded to conspiracy theories rather than principles, and he routinely bad-mouths, curses or otherwise flames anyone who disagrees with him as being an imperial stooge. I'm sorry he lives in a repressive state, and wish that I, along with millions of other Americans, didn't have to foot his masters' bill. DP ----------------------- The search engine Google is censoring the Internet's leading critic of the Church of Scientology, Operation Clambake. The site has been completely removed from the search engine and from the Google Directory, which uses data from the Open Directory Project, DMOZ. A spokesman for Google was unable to tell Daily Rotten why or how the site had been removed, explaining that many staffers were away at an offsite meeting. The spokesman did not return our phone calls today. Controversy first arose in February when a widely linked article reported on the Church of Scientology's supremacy over the search term Scientology. The author documents the manipulation of pro-Scientology website placement in Google. He suggests that using a network of cross-linked Scientology related websites with listings in the DMOZ directory, their collective Google "PageRank" was artificially inflated. Thus any websites critical of Scientology did not appear on the first page of search results for the term "Scientology". It was also suspected that a volunteer DMOZ editor and Scientologist, charged with maintaining the Scientology category may have been responsible for adding a great number of the shill sites, in an apparent violation of DMOZ policy. Google's "PageRank" system uses various methods to assess a site's popularity and determine how high it should appear in search results. These factors include the number of sites that link to a website and the relative importance of the sites that link to it. Sites listed in the DMOZ directory also receive special emphasis. In late February and early March, a number of prominent weblogs and other websites took action to correct the under-representation of anti-Scientology websites in Google. Linking to Operation Clambake using the anchor word "Scientology", the websites raised Clambake's search result ranking from 18th to 4th or 5th. Google frowns upon this practice, known as Google Bombing, because it distorts the results of searches. On popular search terms bombing only has an effect for a limited time, as the older content of weblogs moves onto lesser-ranked archive pages. On or about March 6, the name of the DMOZ Scientology editor was removed from the Scientology section, and replaced with the statement "This category needs an editor". DMOZ also removed the vast majority of redundant cross-linking Scientology sites from its listing. Since the Google Directory listings have not been updated since then, it is possible to see the before and after of the category by viewing the current DMOZ listings and Google Directory listings. On March 19, Google removed Operation Clambake entirely from their index. While Clambake remains a recommended site at DMOZ, Google has filtered it from their copy of the directory. Google has not stated that bombing was the cause for the site's removal, but it is the most likely explanation. Google recently came under fire for refusing to carry advertisements for websites that sell firearm related merchandise, even when the products advertised are bulk food or other benign items ------------------- 155265 SCIENTOLOGISTS OWN GOOGLE (english) by Matt Loney and Evan Hansen 9:13pm Thu Mar 21 '02 (Modified on 11:52pm Thu Mar 21 '02) Google was accused Wednesday of effectively removing from the Internet a Web site that is critical of the Church of Scientology after it deleted links to some of the site's pages from its search engine. Scientologists force Google to cut links By Matt Loney and Evan Hansen ZDNet (UK) March 21, 2002, 12:05 PM PT Google was accused Wednesday of effectively removing from the Internet a Web site that is critical of the Church of Scientology after it deleted links to some of the site's pages from its search engine. The popular search company said it removed 
the links after it received a copyright-infringement complaint from the Church of Scientology. Andreas Heldal-Lund, Webmaster of the site Xenu.net, said in a Usenet posting that the complaint demanded that Google take down a large number of references to different parts of Xenu.net. "The complaint mentions a ridiculous list of addresses, which successfully removes the whole site from their engine," he said. Search engines routinely remove links to URLs, or Web addresses, upon request to avoid litigation. Under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), sites cannot be held liable for copyright infringement provided they promptly take down content flagged by a copyright holder. Much of that activity has targeted links to MP3 files that turn up on search engines. Digital rights advocates said the Church of Scientology's takedown request is noteworthy because it underscores potential conflicts between the DMCA and free speech. "The danger is that people will attempt to silence critics under the guise of copyright infringement," said Fred von Lohmann, an attorney with San Francisco's Electronic Frontier Foundation. In the Xenu.net case, the removed links led to pages that contain material copyrighted by the Church of Scientology. On his site, Heldal-Lund defends this use of copyrighted material, saying that he believes Scientology survives "through the protection afforded it by copyright laws in a way that copyright laws were not designed to address." A representative for the Church of Scientology could not be immediately reached for comment. The right to link has been the subject of several high-profile lawsuits, including a dispute between hacker publication 2600.com and the motion picture industry over code known as DeCSS that can theoretically be used to crack DVDs. In that case, a federal judge in New York held that links to the DeCSS code violated the anti-circumvention clause of the DMCA, which bars trafficking in software that can be used to defeat copy protection. That decision was upheld on appeal. Another linking case under way in New York involves MP3 search service MP3Board.com, which is challenging the DMCA's notice and takedown provision. The case, filed in May 2000, is pending. MP3Board had created a delisting feature allowing copyright holders to pull offending links automatically, but the move did not mollify copyright holders, who were upset that the search engine included results from peer-to-peer exchanges such as Gnutella. The EFF's von Lohmann said search engines are not required to comply with takedown notices, but that most do to avoid the risks of litigation. "Search engines can't take on every copyright holder," he said. "It's hard to say search engines should pay for this fight themselves." Google noted that Xenu.net has some recourse. "Google provides Webmasters the ability to have their content reinstated if they submit a counter notification to Google," the company said in a statement. Xenu.net's Heldal-Lund said this would require the services of a lawyer and would be prohibitively expensive. Matt Loney reported from London; Evan Hansen reported from San Francisco. TalkBack: Post your comment here Re: Scientologists force Google to cut links Internet User Re: Scientologists force Google to cut links Robert Nee Ok, here's the thing ... Dick Leaky Re: Scientologists force Google to cut links m m Let me see if I understand this... Ivan Emmetiolevetch Re: Let me see if I understand this... Dave Pozz Re: Let me see if I understand this... Bill Gaetz Re: Scientologists force Google to cut links Bill Gaetz are these guys homo or what? buck holtz Why the ISP can't contest Cat Beller Re: Why the ISP can't contest Steve Irwin Re: Scientologists force Google to cut links Dan Denver http://zdnet.com.com/2100-1105-866058.html ------------------- Links are back (english) by Mark Bialkowski 9:35pm Thu Mar 21 '02 mbialkowski@rogers.coMAPSBLOCK Check Slashdot. Another victory in Operation Foot Bullet... platdragon.cjb.net -------------- Fucking facistic FUCKS! (english) by profrv@etc 11:52pm Thu Mar 21 '02 Subject: Waxing celebrities A great way to kick start Apster,the publicity would be awesome.John Travolta,Tom Cruise,kirstie Alley must die. Their pox ridden 'religon' is censoring the web.This must not stand.I find their beliefs no more absurd than any other religon but their continuing meddling with the net is insulting and outrageous.It must be nipped in the bud.(my 2$) "Historically, it has been essentially impossible to adequately motivate an assassin, ensuring his safety and anonymity as well, if only because it has been impossible to PAY him in a form that nobody can trace, and to ensure the silence of all potential witnesses. Even if a person was willing to die in the act, he would want to know that the people he chooses would get the reward, but if they themselves were identified they'd be targets of revenge. All that's changed with the advent of public-key encryption and digital cash. Now, it should be possible to announce a standing offer to all comers that a large sum of digital cash will be sent to him in an untraceable fashion should he meet certain "conditions," conditions which don't even have to include proving (or, for that matter, even claiming) that he was somehow responsible for a death."J.Bell. ------------------- Comments on a repeat of that long Horowitz rant about ---- email this story | ----------------------- 155060 Church of Scientology's Supremacy over the search term "Scientology" on Google (english) by XEMU 2:32pm Thu Mar 21 '02 (Modified on 8:37pm Thu Mar 21 '02) If true, this has huge repercussions for the entire Internet--sites will disappear .... FLASH : This Usenet post from Andreas Heldal-Lund, webmaster of xenu.net, indicates that Google has removed links from its search engine based on a DMCA notification from the cult of Scientology. If true, this has huge repercussions for the entire Internet--sites will disappear from the Google search engine based upon a mere allegation that they MIGHT be infringing--in other words, based upon the mere opinion of a copyright holder. http://www.operatingthetan.com/google www.operatingthetan.com/google ----------------- Bogus Report It hasn't been pulled (english) by rb 4:55pm Thu Mar 21 '02 This is a bogus report. Scientology has several sites (and they opened up as of 8:50pm today) on Google. Interesting note though. Since Google picks up sites and informatioin put on the net, is that the first one line infor is a note about a report claiming Google has knocked Scientology off its listings. We could live without "Scientology's" bs though. It's not just a huge money making machine (which it is) and it has done a little good for folks who didn't want to think for more than three minutes about anything serious, but according to reports I've seen now and then it has hurt a few folks when it gets to demogogic. -------------- TRUE (english) by erg 8:37pm Thu Mar 21 '02 This story IS true. Google has indeed pulled the links to the $cientology after the cult/business/mafia has threatened Google with DMCA vialotions (which expressly forbid LINKING to sites breaching copyright). After the story was publicised in a number of geek sources the geeks rallied and spammed Google management. Google has re-instated the site links in the space of hours. Another example that things happen quicker in cyberspace. Ref: http:\\slashdot.org ======== 155144 HOW TO BE WELCOME BY IMC GERMANY AND AUSTRIA 1 - Feel free to support Palestine, but not so much. Avoid to refer to Palestinians are "brave", "fighters" and etc. 2 - Historical comparisons between Israeli policy towards Palestinians with any other opressive regime is "verboten" (prohibited). 3 - Pinochet, Suharto, Bush...usually we are used to call them criminals, murderers, butchers, assholes, etc. But it's not allowed when we are talking about Ariel Sharon. Do not call him names. 4 - Do not depict Palestinians as victims. They are Allah-guided-suicide-terrorists. Israel is only protecting their citizens. 5 - If you don't want to get harassed by pro-Israel IMC readers, rend some good comments on Israel. Probably it will be a hard task, but try hard. It will please mostly of readers from IMC Austria and Germany. 6 - Forget about occupation and massacre of civilian population by Israel Defense Force. Instead, post some critical articles about Hamas and Islamic Jihad (NOW you are free to call them names). Some slight attack on Muslim fundamentalism will be nice as well. 7 - Watch out with images. Photos and, basically, cartoons of IDF soldiers slaughtering Palestinians are only propaganda and possibly will be censored after many cries of "anti-Semitism" and stuff. Following these simple and easy 7 steps, your post on both Austrian and German IMCs will be welcome. However, if you are looking for freedom of speech, justice and independence to the Palestinians, STAY AWAY from IMC Austria and Germany. There are lots of REAL independent media centers. Remember: Worst than conservatives, are fake progressives. www.sinkers.org/latuff ------------------- hey latuff (english) by junglejaws 5:35pm Thu Mar 21 '02 that was ok, but I'll just say what I have to say. actually I found your post a little humorous, and don't know why. heh, ow I am hit (english) by Carl 7:07pm Thu Mar 21 '02 You have to see it from IMC germany and IMC austrias point of view. The problem is that in austria and germany, facists are on the rise again, thereby people are sensitive. And saying anything against istrael, etc in these two countries has given you bad image since world war two. You have to understand that almost all germans and austrians were brought up to love israel for it being brave, ya ya ya. Also, as facism is growing, people do NOT want IMC to be accociated with it. Trust me, the media will not let that chance pass by. Oh and also most forget that israel isn't the brave david with the slingshot vs. the evil arab goliath. But that israel is a goliath side kick of our nuclear goliath known as the US. Heh though you are right. -------------- How to be welcomed by IMC, terrorists, arabs. (english) by DM 7:52pm Thu Mar 21 '02 1. Never ever mention the invasion of Israel in 1948, when the Palestinians were to be given their own state. 2. Never talk about any invasion of Isreal. Definetely do not ask if the arab nations had the complete destruction of Israel and every jew in there as their goal in each one of those. 3. Never ask why no one is concerned with Palestinian refugee camps in Jordan, where the situation is worse than in Israel. 4. Never ask why no demanded a Palestinian state when Jordan held the West Bank. 5. When talking about how Israel has never made any concessions, never bring up the Sinai peninsula or the withdrawl from Lebanon. 6. If someone asks about concession from Arab nations surrounding Israel, quickly change the subject. 7. Remember to never talk about how Jews have lived their for hundreds of years, and were present long before the declaration of Isreal as a state, and had gotten there through immigration and buying of land and property when they got there. 8. When talking about palestininans forced out of their homes, be sure to never mention the hundreds of thousands who left the area in response to the attack on Israel in 1948. Unless of course you're going to include them in some statistic about Israel forcing people from homes, then it's okay to include them in that number. Israel is evil, kill the zionazis! Say anything else, and you'll be labeled as one too. ----------------- Latuff... (english) by (sight) 7:54pm Thu Mar 21 '02 You got the brains of a house plant and a mind more narrow then a needle. And another thing, palestinians brave?! What about the Israelis? The resisted 5 wars and the 67 war was all the middle east against them. Anarchists+Communists=Shit --------------- Careerist Cratoonist (english) by imcista 9:32pm Thu Mar 21 '02 Latuff seemed to once be a budding and poltically insightful cartoonist. Lately, he's seemed more fixated on making a career out of dissing various IMCs that don't automatically kiss his ass editorially. Not to mention his violence-clinging that seems reprehensible in the face of so much inexcusable murder of civilians on both sides. It's time to chill, instead of being a time to kill. ============== 155103 Bono, the New Poster Boy for Globalization (english) by Lloyd Hart 4:03pm Thu Mar 21 '02 (Modified on 8:30pm Thu Mar 21 '02) dadapop@dadapop.com NPR State Radio just aired a report stating that Bono of the band U2 agrees with the conditions that the IMF and the World Bank set before an already raped and pillaged nation can get a loan. Bono, the New Poster  Boy for Globalization By Lloyd Hart NPR State Radio just aired a report stating that Bono of the band U2 agrees with the conditions that the IMF and the World Bank set before an already raped and pillaged nation can get a loan. Well if Bono agrees with those conditions then we the people that actually know in depth the damage the World Bank and the IMF have done to the starving, Aids stricken nations, must now begin to protest this amateur that calls himself an activist. Bono is attempting to co-opt a movement that he won’t even march with. Was he at the protests in Barcelona or Genoa or the WEF protests in New York. No he was not. Bono is no Billy Bragg. If NPR has got it right then Bono is the poster boy for Globalization. We should boycott this man’s celebrity and no longer feed his over inflated ego by any further purchases of U2 recordings. I am outraged that Bono thinks that travelling around the US with the election stealing Bush prior to the Monterey meeting in Mexico will some how change the plans of the Bush gang and their neo-liberal agenda. These cynical men want Africa to scream in pain of Aids and poverty. It is the only way to keep the cheap resources flowing to Europe and America. As far as Bush is concerned, the problem with Africa is that it is full Africans. Which is evidenced by his cynically low contribution to the UN Aids program. Does Bono actually believe he can make a difference with these Evil Doers in the White House? Bush’s own grant proposal for future IMF and World Bank distributions is lead laden with the neo-liberal gutting of infrastructure and resources of the weaker nations. If Bono thinks that guilting out Bush and the gang of thieves he represents by reading to them from the scriptures as NPR reports he does, then I say he has totally lost his mind. Bono is talking to Satan when he talks to Bush and Satan has tricked Bono into campaigning for Bush and his vile gang of Global trashing demons. Bono needs to sit down, shut up and pick up some books from the Anti-Globalization Movement reading list and learn something about the monsters he is so eager to hang out with at the G8, the WEF and in Republican mid term election campaign. I am now challenging Bono to show up at the IMF and World Bank protests on April 19th through to the 22nd. and explain his neo-liberal position directly to the Anti-Globalization protesters and to participate in a debate with the movements leadership which we can film and web cast for all the world to see. If he does not agree with the IMF and World Bank dictates then I challenge him to march with us in the Anti-Globalization Movement in Washington in April. dadapop.com -------------- Rocking all the way to the bank (english) by Fuck-U2 4:23pm Thu Mar 21 '02 ----------- back off bono (english) by ssc 4:30pm Thu Mar 21 '02 what about diversity of tactics? if these guys will listen to him why not let him speak? I also doubt he agreed to the IMF conditions in your claim. You sound like bush when you talk about the 'evil doers' in the white house. hatred breeds hatred. we have to put forgiveness, justice and dialogue first ahead of ignorance ahd violence. Tone down your rhetoric. ps I was also disgusted with his superbowl performance, but its stupid to isolate a potential ally with his clout. ----------------- CORPORATE BRANDING (english) by D9 4:35pm Thu Mar 21 '02 I wish I could give you references but didn't Naomi Klein recently write about the need to watch out for the world globalizers need to somehow "brand" their neo-liberal philosophy by using a young, positive example? Could Bono be their new "branded piedpiper"? ----------- Should this surprise us? (english) by J.D. 4:37pm Thu Mar 21 '02 SuperBowl and Time Magazine Cover. Mainstream doesn't fool around with who they promote. If you want inspiration from music Bob Marley "And until the philosophy that holds one race superior to another is finally and permanetly discredited....." www.youngrebels.com ----------------- Bono is no fool, he's a TRAITOR! (english) by Gabriel 5:30pm Thu Mar 21 '02 Now we know. ------------- Madison indymedia feature on the subject. (english) by Madison Indymedia 7:20pm Thu Mar 21 '02 Please follow this link for more on the rock star Bono... ------------- Bono got FIVE BILLION for the world'd poor. (english) by DM 8:12pm Thu Mar 21 '02 What have you done? -------------- no. you are confused. (english) by donkey kong 8:30pm Thu Mar 21 '02 he convinced bush to try and convince the legislative body to help him give $5 billion in 2004. and as for charity, that is a deeply personal thing. I mean, you don't see me asking what brand of cattle you like to fuck, do you? that would be tagential to the topic at hnad. I purposely misspelled 'hand' though, so that you could have something decent for your rebuttal. have at it. feel good about who you are, you fuck-up. ================== 155013 AUSTRALIAN TREESITTERS and RAINFORESTS UNDER ATTACK! (english) by Native Forest Network 12:59pm Thu Mar 21 '02 Our colleagues in Victoria and Tasmania, Australia have asked us to issue an alert about imminent destruction of world-class rainforest in the Weld Valley and in Goolengook, Victoria. Defenders of these irreplaceable forests need your help immediately! ( two press releases ) www.nativeforest.org Alert!!! Australian Old-Growth Rainforest to be Destroyed Long-Standing Citizen Blockades Broken, 24 Hour Logging by Floodlight Planned Stop the logging of precious forests in East Gippsland and Weld Valley Our colleagues in Victoria and Tasmania, Australia have asked us to issue an alert about imminent destruction of world-class rainforest in the Weld Valley and in Goolengook, Victoria. Defenders of these irreplaceable forests need your help immediately! The old growth forest at Goolengook is one of the last remaining intact unlogged catchments, outside of reserves, on the East Coast of Australia. It lies adjacent to Errinundra National Park, in an area known as East Gippsland. Australia has one of the highest rates of deforestation in the world, and here are found the tallest flowering plants in the world. The Weld Valley in Tasmania is another precious area, which like Goolengook (in Victoria) has been defended by environmentalists blockades. After 31 days of stopping work on a new road and bridge intothe spectacular Weld Valley, on March 6 community members were facedwith a large police operation to close camp. Forestry Tasmania officialsand Police entered the area, declaring the public forest around the new road an 'exclusion zone'. This meansthat anyone found in the area is liable for fines of up to $2000 and/or six months in jail. At Goolengook, a blockade has been maintained for five years since the state government sent loggers in to destroy it on World Environment Dayin June, 1997. A massive fort built over five years is being dismantled and so far nineteen people have been arrested. Both areas are home to threatened species which are allegedly protectedby Australian law. Yet logging destroys the habitat of these species, leading to the intolerable situation where one arm of the Australian and state governments are overseeing their protection, while another is killing them. Forty one state, national and international groups have alreadyrequested that the Victorian State Government implement 350 metre buffers around all rainforest in the State. Goolengook has warm, cool and the very rare overlap rainforest. A lot of this forest will betrashed because they are not granting 350 metre buffers. At Goolengook the police will be blocking roads 30 kilometers from wherethe logging will take place and commence 24 hour logging under spotlight, protected by 150 cops. Anthony Amis of NFN Victoria said, "It's like a military operation!!" Friends of the Earth Melbourne is calling for an international boycott on all timber products exported from Victoria. PLEASE WRITE: Victoria Premier Steve Bracks (steve.bracks@parliament.vic.gov.au) and Tasmania Premier Jim Bacon, c/o Parliament House, Hobart 7000 Tasmania, Australia. Let them know that the logging in Tasmania and Victoria Australia is trashing precious ecosystems that must be included in the Gondwana Forest Sanctuary. Demand that the Victoria and Tasmania Governments pull the loggers out immediately and give protection to the East Gippsland forests and Weld Valley. By logging these forests at Weld Valley and Goolengook we are losing irreplaceable forests of international significance. for information on Goolengook's forests please go to; jeack.com.au/%7Emartdy/Goolengook.htm for updates on goolengook campaign go to www.geco.org.au For information on the Gondwana campaign please see www.nativeforest.org Phil Knight Native Forest Network PO Box 6151 Bozeman, MT 59771-6151 (406) 586-3885 pknight@wildrockies.org The Gondwana Forest Sanctuary Campaign - working to create the world's first inter-continental forest preserve, to protect the world's southernmost forests. nativeforest.org/campaigns/gondwana/index.html Media Release 19 March 2002 Treesits halt logging again in Goolengook -heavy-handed police tactics continue Today in East Gippsland, conservationists again stopped logging in the controversial Goolengook forest with two people up tree platforms. One person is perched high in the canopy and is preventing logging in the Little Goolengook River area. Police have removed his water and food in an attempt to ?starve him out? and the area around the base of the tree has been bulldozed to remove the cover for anyone attempting to replenish his supplies. Floodlights were shone on the treesitter all night last night and police are sounding a siren every ten minutes. The treesitter?s companion was removed from the treesit late last night by Police Search and Rescue and arrested. ?It is a worrying development when the Police Search and Rescue officers, normally called in to rescue people in life-threatening situations are being used here to remove a protester?s complement of water which is essential to the continued survival of aperson in a tree-top,? said Fiona York, spokesperson for the GoongerahEnvironment Centre. This morning, another tree platform was erected over Goolengook Rd and halted logging traffic from 6am. One person was charged and threatened with remand when they attempted to liaise with police, a tactic conservationists are experiencing more and more as forest operations continue. The tree platform was later removed and the conservationist arrested. Logging is taking place in three old growth coupes in the Goolengook block and logging crews are working simultaneously under a 24 hour police guard. Public scrutiny of the logging within the Goolengook forest is impossible due to the massive ?exclusion zone? which has been established by the Department of Natural Resources and Environment. There have been forty people charged since logging started a fortnight ago. Members of the Police Force Response Unit have been using intimidation tactics such as duplicitous charging, threats of remand and confiscation of property including life-sustaining supplies. For more information Fiona York Goongerah Environment Centre (03) 5154 0156 or amis -- Pat Rasmussen Leavenworth Audubon Adopt-a-Forest PO Box 154 Peshastin, WA 98847 Phone: 509-548-7640 patr@crcwnet.com www.leavenworth-leaf.com geco.org.au ============ 154863 Prisoner Jeff "Free" Luers Responds to congressional 'Green Scare' (english) by North Amerian Earth Liberation Prisoners Supp 8:44am Thu Mar 21 '02 (Modified on 11:13am Thu Mar 21 '02) address: POB 50082 Eugene, OR 97405, U$A naelpsn@tao.ca The background of this letter is that congress lackey Scott McInnis (a representative from Colorado-in Vail Inc's district) asked Craig Rosebraugh, former press officer of the ELF, if he would mind "wasting away in jail for 22 years like Jeff Luers". This was during the Congressional Hearing on Eco-Terror and Lawlessness on National Forests held last month in which Craig Rosebraugh was forced to attend. For full details of Craig's testimony and to read the list of 57 questions submitted to Craig, see www.protectcivilliberties.com Free's letter to representative Scott McInnis Dear Mr Scott McInnis, I am writing in response to your recent statements and questions about me. I do not appreciate your deliberate and malicious misrepresentations of my words to further your political goals. Not only have you taken my words and formed new sentences with them attributing them to me, you have quoted me as saying things that I have never said. As an elected Representative of the people, I believe it is your legal and moral duty to be truthful when carrying out the political and legal activities of your office. However I do appreciate your concern about me " [wasting] away in prison for the next two plus decades." You will be pleased to know that is not the case. I have stayed quite active in my college studies working towards my BA. Also, I have had a unique opportunity to discuss my situation with media from around the globe who have shown a surprising interest in my entence. You must realize Scott, that two years ago I was just a young man frustrated by the increasingly severe destruction of the environment. I burned some tires on some trucks as a result of that frustration. Perhaps my actions were misguided. Perhaps they can be rationalized as the lesser of two evils. It is all perspective. Had I been given a reasonable sentence I would have been forgotten by the public. I would have been one news story. I would have served my sentence and finished my BA. I would have been released, reunited with my family and enjoyed the rest of my life. Yes, I would have continued to be active in efforts to protect the environment, but I would have avoided activities that would lead me back to prison. By giving me a sentence of 22 years, viewed by a majority of people as overly harsh and extreme, the system has put me in the spot light, giving me international attention. I have been made to be an example. However, that has only served to make me a political prisoner and for some perhaps even a martyr. This is not a role I chose to fill. It was forced upon me. It is oppression that creates revolutionaries Scott, and it is injustice that ignites revolutions. In defense of Mother Earth Sincerely, Jeff Luers ++++ For sample letters to send to the governor for Jeff Luers or for more information on his case, please contact us at the above email/address www.spiritoffreedom.org.uk add your own comments Nothing like a nice piece of hemp. (english) by The Horned One 11:10am Thu Mar 21 '02 Politicians and hemp rope go together SOOOO well. Is it time to start shooting the SOBs? (english) by Pissed off American 11:13am Thu Mar 21 '02 "If cops continue to play at being an army of occupation, they should expect the subjects to play their role in return. Vive la resistance." -- J.D. Tuccille. "We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission, which is the stage of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force." -- Ayn Rand, Tha Nature of Government. ================= 154846 ANOTHER REFORM IS POSSIBLE: Anti-Globalization Movement Sells Out (english) by Not Ralph Nader 8:16am Thu Mar 21 '02 (Modified on 12:32pm Thu Mar 21 '02) Apparently, a mainstream "Intelligence" outfit like Stratfor.com knows what the lying "progressives" here refuse to acknowledge. The antiglobalization movement is being coopted and domesticated by the various bullshit pro-Capitalist NGOs and Unions like Public Citizen and AFL-CIO. Their agenda is one of Capitalist Exploitation--but with a humanitarian "progressive" face. --- Here are a few choice quotes about these bullshit artists: "The message now being delivered is that anti-globalists are not all completely against 'globalization' per se, but rather against what they term 'unfettered globalization' or 'unrestrained corporate power...' "We say 'yes' to globalization, but with some limits," WSF delegate Louise Beaudouin... "In another bow to legitimacy, WSF organizers sought to diminish the presence and influence of more radical elements. They shunned anarchist groups and kept other figures at a distance..." WWW.STRATFOR.COM Anti-Globalists Make a Play for Legitimacy Summary The latest World Social Forum indicates that the anti- globalization movement is attempting to address two fundamental weaknesses -- a lack of legitimacy and a lack of organization. Though the disparate groups are unlikely to ever forge a unified coalition that can challenge the global power brokers, pushing their agenda through established, mainstream organizations like the United Nations could allow them to affect policy on local and national levels. by Chuck0 8:49am Thu Mar 21 '02 chuck@tao.ca Once again, Stratfor swings and misses, although some people think that the bat may have made contact. Yes, the anti-globalization movement ran into a problem at the WSF where the liberals and social democrats took over to the point where youcouldn't tell the difference between the WSF and WEF. This is as much the fault of radicals in the movement as it is the liberals who are seeking to lead the movement. I don't know if throwing the liberals overboard is the smart move at this point, but we *all* must be questioning and challenging their authority. We have to make clear that this is a leaderless movement and that Bono and Jose Bove don't speak for us. Stratfor has gone a bit loopy when they say that this movement will have no effect on global policies. It's already having an effect, as the spectacle of Bono dancing in fron of Bill Gates demonstrates. The capitalists need reforms, to stave off more revolutionary solutions, so they'll gladly suffer the court jester antics of Bono. Finally, the anti-globalization movement is *not* "saddled" with images of anarchists in Seattle. The anarchists have contributed much to these movements. Seattle was just one part of the bigger picture. Stratfor should stick to analyzing U.S. foreign policy. www.infoshop.org ------------- Stratfor knows more than you think (english) by not Ralph Nader 9:23am Thu Mar 21 '02 Stratfor is correct in suggesting the the dominant wing of the antiglobalization movement is seeking to be "legitmized" (i.e. coopted). The radicals (and I include anarchists) in this category are marginal in both power and numbers--especially given the fact they don't have access to millions of dollars in bribes...er, donations and unions dues like the NGOs or unions. The surest sign of this political sell out is the pathetically cowardly decision that the "Mobilization for Global Justice" made to effectively pull out of anti-war protests in Washington DC last fall--after the antiglobalization protests in that city were changed to antiwar protests when the IMF/World Bank meetings were cancelled. That was bullshit. And should provide a clear sign to any thinking person what that organization really stood for... ---------------- Classic (english) by mippy 12:32pm Thu Mar 21 '02 There are different factions in "the movement", but it is always the ways of the authorities to exxagerate and aggravate factional tendencies. I think it is important to realize that NGO's have nothing to stand on if they do not have popular support. The key is that the "popular support" remains awake and does not simply assume that Green Peace or Labor Unions or any other relatively large and monied groups are "in charge" and serving our best interests. Top heavy organizations CAN act in the public interest, but they are highly vulnerable to subversion, submission and infiltration. At the grass roots we must have endless webs and networks of informal communication and cooperation that make up THE WAY THINGS REALLY GET DONE. Our struggle is not to fall asleep in the arms of NGO's or any other relatively rigid institutions. At this juncture, it does seem that we have developed a pretty loose informal matrix connecting countless pockets of the world and the small democratic organizations committed to change. Revolution and the struggle for freedom demands that we remain awake to our individual sovereignty as the key for guiding, establishing or dissolving institutions. raisethefist.com ============= 132398 Anti-Globalists Make a Play for Legitimacy (Stratfor analysis) (english) by Sabri 9:15pm Sat Feb 9 '02 (Modified on 2:13am Sun Feb 10 '02) I pay for lots of junk I receive from Stratfor but every now and then one comes across a few interesting ones. I thought this one may be of interest to everyone. Moreover, it is legally forwardable. As far as I know, or was told, these people are some former/retired American intelligent agents. Below is what theythink about the so-called anti-globalization movement, or so they pretend. ++++++++ Anti-Globalists Make a Play for Legitimacy Summary The latest World Social Forum indicates that the anti- globalization movement is attempting to address two fundamental weaknesses -- a lack of legitimacy and a lack of organization. Though the disparate groups are unlikely to ever forge a unified coalition that can challenge the global power brokers, pushing their agenda through established, mainstream organizations like the United Nations could allow them to affect policy on local and national levels. Analysis An anti-globalization group known as the International Forum on Globalization (IFG) released several recommendations for restructuring the global economy Feb. 2 at the World Social Forum (WSF) in Porto Alegre, Brazil. The recommendations range from limiting corporate power to folding a wide range of new responsibilities and regulatory powers into the United Nations. The substance of this and other proposals coming out of Porto Alegre is less significant than the fact that the anti- globalization movement is clearly seeking to move beyond its radical, protest-driven roots to develop a concrete agenda. WSF organizers and many of its participants are focused on bringing the anti-globalization agenda into the mainstream. Part of this strategy will include using more mainstream groups and organizations, like the U.N., as a platform for their agenda. The WSF -- which brings together a number of activist groups, including the IFG -- will never operate from a position of global power and therefore will not bring about major changes in global policies and organizations. However, by working its agenda through established organizations, the diverse members of the anti-globalization movement may be able to gain more leverage at the local and national level. At the same time, groups could find themselves in unusual partnerships against a common enemy: the United States. The history of the anti-globalization movement -- which comprises non-governmental organizations, leftist politicians, advocates and protesters -- has actually worked against it. The movement is still saddled with images of anarchists trashing Starbucks at the 1999 World Trade Organization meeting in Seattle and agro- protestors burning genetically modified corn in a Brazilian field owned by Mansanto last year at the first WSF summit. The prevailing view in many circles is that WSF participants are largely angry contrarians and malcontents who lack serious alternatives to the status quo, so they are disregarded. WSF organizers and participants are now attempting to address two fundamental weaknesses: a lack of legitimacy -- which is closely tied to its public image problems -- and a lack of organization. While media coverage of the 1999 WTO meeting and last year's WSF summit focused primarily on the protests, most reports from Porto Alegre this year point to a more substantive agenda, one full of serious debate on issues and viable alternatives to the status quo. Headlines like "More Focus on Policy than Protest" from the Associated Press and "Serious Ideas Behind the Theatrics" in the Financial Times represent serious victories for the WSF. The message now being delivered is that anti-globalists are not all completely against "globalization" per se, but rather against what they term "unfettered globalization" or "unrestrained corporate power." Rather than dwelling on the unadulterated evils of globalization, they talk of "progressive social reform." "We say 'yes' to globalization, but with some limits," WSF delegate Louise Beaudouin, the foreign minister of Quebec province, was quoted as saying by the Associated Press. Some of those limits were outlined in the IFG report as well as in a closing document adopted by the summit. Broadly, proposed reforms centered around increasing aid to the developing world, improving global governance, reining in corporate power and the movement of capital and placing more protections on labor and the environment. The United States and large multi-national corporations remain the main antagonists. In another bow to legitimacy, WSF organizers sought to diminish the presence and influence of more radical elements. They shunned anarchist groups and kept other figures at a distance -- such as radical French farmer Jose Bove, who made his name by burning down a McDonald's in France and led the burning of the Mansanto field last year. Certain attendees also added to the legitimacy of the WSF. Several World Bank and U.N. officials attended, including U.N. Human Rights High Commissioner Mary Robinson. The speaking schedule was replete with Nobel Prize winners. Liberal politicians were also out in force, including six junior ministers and three presidential candidates from France and Luis Inacio "Lula" da Silva, the leading leftist candidate in Brazil's presidential race. Da Silva made several strong statements condemning U.S. dominance in the Americas and opposing plans for a Free Trade Agreement of the Americas. Heavy-hitting attendees not only add credence to the forum but also point toward future alliances that anti-globalists will use to forward their agenda. Organizing the hundreds of disparate groups into one umbrella organization is a nearly impossible task. An alternative strategy -- which simultaneously addresses issues of legitimacy and organization -- is to dovetail with larger and more established organizations that share similar views on specific issues. The IFG report puts a good deal of emphasis on the United Nations. Anti-globalists may look to the U.N., especially its bureaucratic arm, as a platform to push issues ranging from capital controls to environmental and labor protection. The U.N. will probably never have greater authority than it currently possesses over such issues, since that would require Security Council approval and charter reform. But existing U.N. commissions could press for greater recognition of the anti- globalist agenda. Working through the U.N. has another advantage. The anti- globalist agenda is broadly opposed to excessive U.S. power. Countries looking to irritate the United States or curtail its influence can use WSF issues within the structure of the U.N. to indirectly challenge Washington. Other organizations that the WSF participants could look to are the International Labor Organization and the World Health Organization. There also is an overlap between many WSF participants and a relatively new Commission on Globalization. Several NGO leaders including Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch and a leading movement figure, are co-chairs in the commission along with such mainstream figures as Mary Robinson, George Soros, Mikhail Gorbachev, former World Bank Chief Economist Joseph Stiglitz and International Labor Organization Director-General Juan Somavia. The more closely WSF participants can associate themselves and their causes with organizations like the Commission for Globalization -- and with politicians who share their views on specific issues -- the more legitimacy they gain and the more buzz their issues receive. And in the end, this is all about buzz. Anti-globalists are unlikely to effect change on a global level. Rather, the groups attending gatherings like the WSF seek to co-opt power and create leverage they can use on local, regional and, at most, national levels. The more their issues are talked about globally, the more pressure they can put on the local centers of power and the more effective they will be at altering the status quo in small and incremental ways. The most effective anti-globalists will recognize both the strengths and limitations of this strategy. --------------- by Anonymous 9:49pm Sat Feb 9 '02 "In another bow to legitimacy, WSF organizers sought to diminish the presence and influence of more radical elements. They shunned anarchist groups and kept other figures at a distance -- such as radical French farmer Jose Bove, who made his name by burning down a McDonald's in France and led the burning of the Mansanto field last year." Can anyone elaborate on this? I've received e-mails over several lists claiming this year's WSF was a disgusting frenzy of social democratic self-congratulation, not to mention a police state ("due to September 11," of course), but I'd be interested in hearing the thoughts of anyone who was there. -------------- Merger Next Year (english) by Agent Hello Kitty 10:45pm Sat Feb 9 '02 Rumors have it that the WEF and WSF are going to merge next year and hold their summit on a cruise ship in the Carribean. The WEF organizers were so impressed with how good Bono made them look that next year they are inviting Susan George, Lori Wallach, George Monbiot, and all the other NGO wonks who want to work for socially conscious corporations. Not much changes over the centuries. Four hundred years ago the king would invite the moderates in the peasant revolution into the castle for negotiations, where he would proceed to have their heads chopped off. These days, the corporations seduce moderate NGOs into the house with images of social reforms and continued funding. Of course, the first condition of this deal is that the former anti-glob wonks have to condemn the nearest black bloc and ask everybody else to adopt a code of nonviolence. www.infoshop.org/humor/ ------------- what's with that? (english) by jimmy bond 10:46pm Sat Feb 9 '02 "Below is what theythink about the so-called anti-globalization movement, or so they pretend." Back in the days when Stratfor was predicting the American military would be humiliated in Afghanistan like the Russians were, everybody took them at their word. But now that they criticism the anti-globalization movement, whoa, they must have a hidden agenda. --------- good (english) by junglejaws 10:53pm Sat Feb 9 '02 it's worth trying. Then the powersthatbe can't just call the cops/military to harrass antiglobal orgs. They'd be forced to answerto(?) the U.N. ---------------- More to Ponder (english) by Anonymous 11:38pm Sat Feb 9 '02 "The letter of principles of the WSF does not permite the participation of armed organizations." Why, then, do they welcome government officials with open arms? I realize that those who carried puppets representing the WSF in New York last weekend had the best intentions; in the future, I suggest those of us who are serious about radical change recognize the WSF for what it is. www.forumsocialmundial.org.br/eng/index.... From the Sublime to the Ridiculous (english) by the voice of justice 11:59pm Sat Feb 9 '02 "Rumours have it that the WEF and the WSF are going to merge next year and hold their summit on a cruise ship in the Carribean." Yep sounds right on track for these two groups. From what I understand they've hired Carnival Cruise Lines and will have Cathy Lee Crosby singing and dancing her way around the ship entertaining the delegates. Who knows she might even bring some of her sweatshop kids with her ! -------- A NON-OPTION (english) by Jordan Thornton 2:13am Sun Feb 10 '02 pilgrim112@hotmail.com "Working through the U.N. has another advantage. The anti- globalist agenda is broadly opposed to excessive U.S. power. Countries looking to irritate the United States or curtail its influence can use WSF issues within the structure of the U.N. to indirectly challenge Washington." Which would be just fine ... if the U.N. had not dissolved into a puppet organization of, and for the legitimization of, that same corporate power. Their lack of response to the Bu$h regime's ludicrous and hateful rhetoric should be evidence enough of that. The U.N. is now made up of the same Elite the anti-globalization Movement so despises and is working against. This article is hoping to provide us with dead-end options, just as our politicians have seen fit to do of late. P E A C E ...  ------------------------------ http://www.newleftreview.net/NLR23908.shtml via yoshie ---- HOME ABOUT NLR SUBSCRIPTIONS RENEWALS BACK ISSUES ARCHIVE HISTORY LINKS New Left Review 5, September-October 2000 The astonishing story of the uproar in Egypt over the publication of a Syrian novel set in Algeria—a work of literature as trigger for political crisis and polemical turmoil, two decades after it was written, in a landscape completely transformed. Haydar Haydar’s fiction as tuning-fork of stark dissonances of time and outlook in the Arab world. SABRY HAFEZ THE NOVEL, POLITICS AND ISLAM Haydar Haydar's Banquet for Seaweed On April 28th of this year an impassioned appeal appeared in Cairo, blazoned across the pages of the newspaper al-Sha‘b. Entitled ‘Who Pledges to Die with Me?’, it was a ferocious attack on a novel published in Egypt some months earlier, Walimah li-A‘shab al-Bahr (Banquet for Seaweed), calling it a blasphemous work by an apostate who merited assassination. Uproar ensued. Mosques thundered at the discovery of this infamy. The novel was withdrawn. Judges and police interrogated intellectuals and officials in the Ministry of Culture. Students demonstrated, and armoured cars rolled into the streets. Debate raged in the National Assembly, and the activities of a political party were suspended. Two different government committees were set up to investigate the affair. A torrent of articles and declarations, for and against the book at issue, poured off the presses. In Yemen, in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait analogous campaigns were triggered. Though the Arab world has seen not a few cultural or political clashes over literary works, the scale and intensity of the hubbub in Egypt this year is unprecedented. Yet what is the text that has provoked it? A novel that is now nearly twenty years old, and has run through at least six editions, by a Syrian writer whose fiction has never so much as touched on the country where he is now reviled. Perhaps the most astonishing, and ominous, feature of the whole episode is the disjuncture between the controversy and its object. Not that Banquet for Seaweed is an irrelevant or inconsiderable novel—just the contrary: it is a very powerful and remarkable one. But no less revealing of the present condition of culture and politics in Egypt than the rage of its enemies is their blindness to its themes and significance. To understand this deadly discrepancy, a look at the historical context of the battlefield of ideas in the Middle East today is necessary. Power and learning The Arabic novel is a purely twentieth-century phenomenon, whose rise was intricately linked to a cultural transition—involving a major shift in what Pierre Bourdieu has called ‘symbolic domination’—in the passage to modernity. [1] In pre-modern times, cultural leadership in the Arab world was virtually inseparable from religious authority, itself highly dependent on the currently governing political power. In these conditions, education was firmly in the hands of the religious establishment. The basic function of the leading centres of learning—the Azhar in Cairo, the Najaf in Iraq, the Umayyad in Syria, the Zaytuna in Tunisia or the Qarawiyyin in Morocco [2] —was to teach the Quran and transmit the concepts and rules of Muslim tradition. Most cultural production was grounded in religious concerns, and works of literature were deeply rooted in intellectual and stylistic competences acquired from the study of sacred texts. Endowments by the faithful strengthened the material basis of traditional Islamic institutions, but did not—with the exception of the Shi’i centre in Najaf—enhance their independence from political rulers. Islam granted those equipped with learning a prominent role in society, so cultural elites, nurtured by the religious establishment, often acted as spiritual arbiters between the rulers and the ruled. More accessible to the people, their good offices could mediate complaints from below to those above, or ameliorate unjust rulings by the powerful—while, vice-versa, rulers often used them to pacify or control the masses. Over time, the more stagnant and autocratic the political establishment became, the more subservient the traditional intellectual elite was forced to be. Such was the trend pronounced during the three centuries of Ottoman rule in the Middle East, when local religious offices were manipulated from Istanbul to stoke individual ambitions, set groups against each other and coopt potential discontent. For the smooth running of each region, an effective alliance had to be set in place between the appointed wali—administrative official—and the local religious leadership, capable of suppressing or discrediting any opposition to the status quo. Modernity on the Nile In Egypt, however, the symbolic capital of the traditional elites started to erode in the early nineteenth century, when Muhammad Ali ( fl 1805–48) [3] —often called the founder of modern Egypt—introduced, on the heels of the short-lived Napoleonic expedition to the Nile, a new, European-based educational system. For centuries, the religious establishment had sustained a system of Qur’anic schools throughout the Middle East that gave it a monopoly of education. Thus Muhammad Ali’s reforms, which broke this monopoly, amounted to little less than a cultural revolution. The new educational system supplied the modernizing state with much needed technocrats and civil servants. Schools, hospitals, newspapers, magazines, printing presses, learned societies and charitable organizations were founded in large numbers. The spread of journalism, and translations of European literature, created new reading publics and fostered nationalist awakening. Even the position of women was not left unchanged. [4] From all these institutions, the traditionally educated were alienated and effectively excluded. The new order preferred advisors trained in Europe, who often returned to occupy high positions in its administration. By the time Muhammad Ali’s grandson, Khedive Isma’il—educated in Paris, and determined to ‘make Egypt a part of Europe’—was deposed by British intervention in 1879, the modern educational system had established complete ascendancy over its religious rival, its products outnumbering their counterparts from the traditional schools by ten to one. The latter, however, were marginalized rather than uprooted—an error for which Egypt would later pay dearly. Under the British protectorate radical nationalism was repressed, but the semi-colonial order could not halt rapid urbanization and, with it, further changes in customary modes of life and systems of values. An educated reading-public started to support new types of literature and art—forms hitherto unknown in Arabic culture: the short story, the novel, drama, painting and, eventually, the cinema. Meanwhile, religious education was coming to be seen—even in the countryside, its traditional hinterland—as barren and unhelpful to the young. The graduates of the Azhar had serious problems finding work in the institutions of the modern state. Politically, too, since the struggle for independence from Britain needed to speak the language of the occupiers, its leaders came without exception from the modern educational system. By the first decades of the twentieth century, the new cultural elite was ready to challenge the traditional intellectuals on their own ground. Pioneering works of narrative included acerbic attacks on pillars of local religion—typically depicted as villains using religious robes to hide treachery, opportunism and debauchery. After discrediting the traditional elite in the first two decades of the century, the new intellectuals started to rationalize the sacred in the 1930s, [5] and to accommodate it into the secular by the 1940s, arriving at an almost complete secularization of religious topics in their treatment of the character of the Prophet and his early companions by the 1950s. [6] In 1960 the first Marxist biography of Muhammad appeared. [7] The development of this intellectual offensive coincided with the country’s progress from colonial rule to limited independence, and finally complete liberation from imperialist control at the end of the 1950s. However eroded their power base, traditionalist leaders never ceased to resist the advance of secularization; and the dual educational system continued to generate an underlying dichotomy in Egyptian culture that gave them resources for counterattack. Bigots used every opportunity to depict their adversaries as catspaws of a Western plot against Islam—not an easy task, at a time when they were leading the national movement against colonial rule and mobilizing the masses behind them. Yet traditionalists never tired of assailing their foes as enemies of the faith. The history of modern Egyptian culture is punctuated by the battles fought between the two forces. In 1925, the traditionalists won the contest over Ali Abd al-Raziq’s book, Islam and the System of Government, which had called for the separation of religion and the state, and secured the dismissal of the author from his post at the Azhar. But in 1926 they lost the campaign to convict Taha Husain—the leading Egyptian intellectual of the time—of blasphemy, for advocating in his book, On Pre-Islamic Poetry, a Cartesian approach to the study of Arabic culture. In 1927 the Muslim Brothers association was formed, to press home the counterattack on the modernists. But the 1930s and 1940s proved to be a period of frustration for the traditionalists; in a time of liberal experiment, they failed to make any gains over the next two decades. It was not until 1959 that they again won a significant victory, when the Azhar proscribed Naguib Mahfouz’s novel , The Children of Gebelawi. [8] A decade later, two plays by Abd al-Rahman al-Sharqawi, Al-Husain: The Revolutionary, and Al-Husain: The Martyr, were banned from the stage. Under Nasser, however, these remained relatively isolated episodes. In the main, the 1950s and 1960s was a period of social polarization, increasing activity by the left, and a sharp crackdown on the Muslim Brothers and kindred groups. Many fundamentalist leaders went into exile, where a number joined forces with Nasser’s two major enemies, the feudal dynasties of the Arabian Peninsula and their patron in the United States. Association with the Saudi dynasty de-radicalized the Islamic movement, giving it a built-in phobia of the left. When Egypt was trounced by Israel in the Six Day War of 1967, these traditionalists seized on the defeat to blame the whole modernist project for this national disaster. This was the beginning of a determined counter-offensive to re-legitimize discredited forms of religious-political discourse, which modernist intellectuals made the mistake of not taking very seriously at first. Saudi sustenance But with Sadat’s installation in power in 1970, the balance of forces changed dramatically. Nasser’s version of Arab nationalism and state-led industrialization was unceremoniously ditched in favour of an open door to Western capital and a brazenly pro-American foreign policy, in exchange for lavish US and Saudi subsidies. Sadat’s regime had no hesitation in using Islamic activists to stamp out student opposition to its policies in the universities, where fundamentalist groups violently silenced the left and steadily built up their own influence—offering ‘Islam is the solution’ [9] as an appealing slogan to a now impoverished stratum of unemployed young graduates, ironically recipients of a modern education, but left without a future after the collapse of Nasser’s welfare state. After the 1973 War, the oil boom in the Middle East offered a further golden opportunity to the Islamicists. Leaders of the fundamentalist movement had already amassed considerable wealth during their years of exile in Saudi service. Now they were in a position to act as brokers for desperately wanted jobs in the Gulf, amid the rampant unemployment and inflation unleashed by Sadat’s open-door policies. Naturally, they favoured those with the right ideological leanings, and for the first time the adoption of a retrograde discourse became the key to vital work-opportunities and chances of wealth. [10] Within another few years, a more dramatic form of adventure opened up for young militants. Massive American and Saudi funding of the Mujahideen movement in Afghanistan drew sizeable numbers of recruits to the Afghan War from the under-class of jobless but idealistic young graduates that had developed in Egypt, as in other poor and densely populated Arab countries. Combat training and experience in the Afghan war radicalized the neo-Islamicist movement, and gave it a new self-confidence. Execution of the widely detested Sadat by Muslim militants at the start of the 1980s only enhanced their aura of dedication. The following decade saw the consolidation of Islamicist legitimacy in Egypt, as kleptocracy and corruption persisted, and protection of the poor and weak by public authority became a mockery. Betrayed by the state, the under-classes were driven towards an alternative welfare system offered by the neo-traditionalists. With the collapse of public health and education, the role of mosque-schools and mosque-clinics became more and more important, and the credibility of official media was undermined by a counter-discourse which could back its words with competent deeds experienced in daily life. [11] At the turn of the 1990s, victory in Kabul brought back a large number of battle-hardened ‘Afghan Arabs’, as they were called, buoyed up by the defeat and fall of the USSR. They readily presented themselves as the only viable alternative to an increasingly decadent and subaltern regime. Rebranding Islam These social and political changes were accompanied by a no less significant cultural shift. Sadat had authorized a token liberalization of the scenery of power to decorate his dictatorship, allowing the formation of a number of political parties, none with any hope of winning an election, but each entitled to its newspaper. Two of these parties, Al-Wafd and Hizb al-‘Amal (Labour Party), collaborated with the outlawed Islamicist groups, and the Labour Party ended up completely in their hands, its newspaper al-Sha‘b (The People) gradually becoming their official organ. The architect of this transformation, ‘Adel Husain, was an ex-communist who developed a highly effective discourse, drawing on the deep yearning for a bygone cultural superiority, as a way out of a profound sense of humiliation and defeat. He recognized that the static, pre-Copernican nature of Islamic ideology, with its geocentric universe, was essential to its magical appeal for the young, yet, at the same time, a source of tension with a socio-historical reality in which human beings and their order were visibly losing any feeling of centrality, and becoming more and more subject to fragmentation. To solve this main contradiction of Islamic ideology, he went onto the attack with ppeals to the sincerity of the young to wake up to the conspiracy of the West against Islam. Turning The People into a messianic vehicle of the new Islamicism, he cleverly inverted prevailing images of modernity, associating it with failure, defeat and corruption, and contrasting these to the puritan, idealistic standards of Islam. He also utilized Sadat’s call for a state based on ‘science and religion’ to the full, putting technical knowledge and the fruits of his past as a militant Marxist in the service of religion. Charismatic preachers with access to state-controlled television popularized this message, widening the public of The People and making many of its columnists stars of the new era of the faithful. Islamicist violence Meanwhile, publishing houses financed by Saudi or Iranian money filled the market with subsidized editions of a Muslim discourse covering every aspect of spiritual life. To enforce their grip on the market, the new zealots drove out writings suspect of rationalist or secular viewpoints, activating the Azhar and Council for Islamic Studies as inquisitors and censors. In the last two decades, not a year has passed without a number of works being banned for theological reasons. Traditionalists had now turned the tables on their opponents. Instead of periodic reinterpretation or appropriation of the story of the Prophet by rationalists and modernists—now suppressed by a rigidly orthodox canon—treatises were appearing on topics once the bastion of modernity, calling for the development of a specifically Islamic literature. [12] Although it is difficult to take many of these tracts seriously as intellectual arguments, culturally they represent a complete reversal of the rise of modernism to symbolic domination in the first half of the twentieth century. All this was achieved in an atmosphere of fear and intimidation, in which free-thinking intellectuals increasingly met with not only symbolic but literal violence. Modernists found themselves trapped between Islamicist fanatics and an irretrievably degenerate and servile regime, as the 1990s opened with one attempt on the life of Mubarak in Addis Ababa and ended with another in Port Said, while attacks against tourists punctuated the life of the country in between. To worsen matters, the state, branding all its opponents as terrorists, strove to enlist modernist support in its campaigns of repression. Intellectuals who let themselves be lured into consorting with officialdom then drew the rage of the Islamicists against them. In 1992 a leading rationalist, Faraj Fawdah, was assassinated. In 1994 came the attempt on the life of Mahfouz that left him paralysed in one arm. In 1996 Nasr Hamid Abu-Zaid, author of an unorthodox exegesis of tenets in the Qur ’an, [13] was ordered by a court ruling to divorce his wife, on the grounds that a Muslim woman is forbidden wedlock with an infidel—forcing the couple into exile. It is this fevered escalation that reached a sudden crescendo with the furore over the publication of Banquet for Seaweed in Cairo in the spring of this year. In recent years the price of serious books and magazines in Egypt has soared, amidst a rampant inflation that has delapidated the purchasing power of the middle class. Today the average Egyptian reader cannot afford to buy literary works published outside the country, and has difficulty in acquiring even those printed within it. As a palliative measure, a few years ago the Ministry of Culture set up a series of cheap reprints of outstanding works by contemporary Arab writers from countries other than Egypt, edited by the Egyptian novelist Ibrahim Aslan, entitled Afaq al-Kitabah (Horizons of Writing). [14] The series only prints between 3,000 and 5,000 copies of any work, but since these are sold at the price of a newspaper they are often out of print within a few weeks. In October 1999, Banquet for Seaweed was released by the series, a novel of 700 pages with a print run of 3,000, and a cover price of 4 Egyptian pounds—a little over a dollar. Voices of dissent Its author Haydar Haydar is a leading Syrian representative of the 1960s generation of writers and intellectuals in the Arab world. [15] Born, as a rule, shortly before or during the Second World War, their childhood nourished on dreams of independence and freedom, this was a cohort that reached its teens in a Middle East most—though not all—of which had been decolonized. During their schooldays, Nasser’s brand of pan-Arab nationalism and the triumph of liberation movements elsewhere in the world filled the air with euphoria, and the radio with patriotic anthems to a future based on equality and social justice, free from foreign exploitation and domestic regression. By the time they went to university, higher education was free in Egypt, and almost free in most Arab universities, filling them with a healthy mixture of students from all strata of society. Campuses teemed with progressive ideas, and cultural life appeared generally free of sediments from an obscurantist past. (In fact, though masked, these were still operational in several aspects of the official discourse, allowing its adherents to use this period of hibernation for stock-taking and reconstruction.) [16] The leading cultural journal of the time, in which most of this generation’s writers and critics made their debut, was the monthly Al-Adab (Literatures), published in Beirut and widely read from Iraq to Morocco. A truly pan-Arab literary review, Al-Adab was modelled on Les Temps Modernes, [17] taking its inspiration from Sartre’s attractive blend of Marxism and Existentialism and its guidelines from his manifesto What is Literature?. By the time the new generation had completed its cultural formation and begun its own literary career in the 1960s, the euphoria of independence had dissipated, as dreams of freedom and social justice foundered on the realities of autocratic rule and thwarted development. In consequence, its writing marked a clear break with the simplicities of a pre-independence literature, which had habitually posited a more or less monolithic national self against the colonial Other. By contrast, the new authors dwelt on the contradictions of national identity, giving voice to the voiceless. Writing with subtlety and indirection, to elude official censorship, they refused the codes of the ruling discourse, and foresaw the disaster of 1967 long before it took place. Haydar Haydar is eminently a product of this experience. From an Alawite family, Haydar was born in 1936 in the small village of Husain al-Bahr, near Tartus, on the Mediterranean coast. After graduating from the University of Damascus he worked as a teacher, finding time to write. His first novel The Leopard (1969) is set in the mountain villages of his region, depicting the plight of peasants who had fought for Syrian independence, only to suffer yet worse oppression from local landlords under national than under colonial administration. The narrative traces the fate of an individual revolt against harsh and depressive conditions that are not yet mature enough for collective rebellion: a tragedy yielding only a legend in an unchanging landscape. Haydar’s second novel Dreary Time (1973) is the Bildungsroman of a group of young people arriving from the impoverished countryside in search of a new life in Damascus, following their progressive loss of hope and direction amid the maze of its confused religious ideologies, thwarted social aspirations, competing brands of nationalism and simplistic versions of Marxism. It can be read as an elegy to the urban youth of his time, and their inability to comprehend the complexity of the forces frustrating them. An epic of the modern Arab world A decade passed between these early works and Haydar’s next novel. In the mid-1970s he went to Algeria to teach, moving on in 1981 to Beirut, where he worked with the Palestinian resistance until the Israeli invasion of the Lebanon forced him, along with so many others, to flee to Cyprus. There Banquet for Seaweed appeared in 1983, in a limited edition published in Nicosia. It received immediate critical acclaim and was reprinted several times in Beirut and Damascus during the following years. Marking a major thematic and stylistic break in his work, the novel moves away from the local Syrian scene for a broad panorama of the failure of Arab revolution, complex in structure and epic in scope. Banquet for Seaweed interweaves two narratives—one recounting the Communist uprising in the Marshes of Southern Iraq in 1968, the other portraying the daily realities of Algeria in the early 1970s. Spatial and temporal axes are held in balance by an intricate dialectical form. The story starts on an Algerian morning, in a chapter entitled ‘Autumn’, proceeds through ‘Winter’ and ‘Spring’, then breaks to a thematic sequence set mainly in Iraq—‘The Marshes’, ‘Love’, ‘Ode to Death’, ‘The Rise of Leviathan’—before returning to ‘Summer’, where it ends in the Algerian night following the daybreak of its beginning. Substantively, what this structure figures is a dialogue between the revolution that was crushed in Iraq, and the revolution that supposedly triumphed in Algeria, mediated through two contrasting love affairs. The novel opens with a couple strolling on a beach, accosted by two young louts with the taunt: ‘Decent Algerian women don’t mix with foreigners.’ The foreigner is an Iraqi exile, Mahdi Jawad. Member of a once vibrant Communist Party, the largest force in his country, he is now a survivor of its debacle. For the ICP, refusing to overthrow an ailing and unpopular regime in 1963, allowed the Ba’ath party to seize power instead, and split apart. Mahdi, belonging to its radical wing, was jailed and tortured. Escaping from prison, he has made his way to Algeria to work as a teacher in its Arabization programme. There, however, the military regime of Boumédienne is now in power, the liberal and socialist leaders of the FLN in prison. Mahdi soon discovers that life in Algiers is not radically different from that in Baghdad. ‘The city is beautiful, surrounded with forests and the sea, but like any Arab city, it is dreary: ruled by tyranny, hunger, bribery, corruption, religion, hatred, ignorance, cruelty and murder.’ [18] Dreams of justice and emancipation seem as distant as under the French. Ignored, unemployed, without visible future, the children of the revolution turn their frustration against themselves, against women, against fellow Arabs. His companion on the strand, Asya Lakhdar, was ten years old when Algeria was liberated. Her father had fought for the FLN in the mountains, was arrested by the French shortly before the victory of the Revolution, and tortured to death; then, as a child, she witnessed the ruthless campaign of destruction by the OAS before the French withdrawal. She now lives with her younger sister Manar and her mother Fadilah, who has since been forced to marry a merchant, Yazid Wild al-Hajj. Her stepfather played no role in the revolution, but realized that marrying the widow of a martyr as a second wife and raising her daughters could give him political cachet and opportunities under the new regime. The mean and pragmatic Yazid exploits Fadilah and oppresses her daughters as a petty tyrant at home, while pursuing shady deals on the black market in the city: a representative figure of the corrupt new merchant class that has inherited the revolution and emptied its goals of meaning. Ironically, confident in the virtues of the market no matter what its colour, Yazid believes that business values alone can save Algeria from economic decline and offer it a democracy better than Boumédienne’s militarism or Ben Bella’s ‘communism’, as he describes it. The sisters cordially detest him. At the time of the narrative, Asya is struggling to pass her baccalauréat, after failing it three times because of her weakness in one subject, Arabic. The dreams of the two girls have gone in opposite directions. Manar is determined to escape it all and get away to a good life in France. Asya wants to regain Arab identity by recovering her language, to study at university and work in her country. When Mahdi appears in the classroom, he reminds Asya of her father, who was Mahdi’s age when he died, and he is soon smitten with her—‘fresh and vital as the sea, beautiful as a goddess of old whom death has forgotten’. [19] Extra-curricular lessons allow their relationship to flower, against the background of Yazid’s opposition and the hostility of Algerian society. If this love affair, often lyrically described, offers Mahdi emotional release from the melancholy of his time in Algiers, he finds friendship and intellectual support from a chance encounter with a compatriot, Mihyar al-Bahili, teaching philosophy in another school in the city. As an idealistic youth in Iraq, Mihyar’s faith in Nasserism was shattered by the Arab defeat of 1967. Determined not to give up, he joined the Marxists who organized the uprising in the Marshes of Southern Iraq in 1968, an insurrection which lasted several months before it was abandoned by the ICP, on instructions from Moscow. Captured by the Iraqi Army, Mihyar had managed to escape from prison and, like others of his generation, made for Algeria in the hope of serving a more effective revolution. He soon discovers that he is chasing a mirage, becoming if anything even more disappointed than Mahdi in the fruits of national liberation. The fate of Fullah Bu-’Innab, landlady of the pension where he lodges, personifies that of the women in Algeria who struggled for the independence of their country and ended up worse off than when they started. Fighting side by side with men in the mountains, covering for them in time of danger, undertaking hazardous missions, even acting as a delegate abroad, Fullah had been a militant of the revolution in the most complete sense. But with its victory, she had lost twice over: first in refusing venal competition for material privileges in the new order, as nation became market and patriotism bigotry; and then in falling under pressure to submit to traditional Islamic status. Seeking to preserve her freedom, she found that to reject domestic slavery was only to expose herself to the cynical attentions of old comrades, now men of power and possessions. Aware that her charms will fade, she manages to get a large flat, which she runs as a pension to provide for herself. The only freedom left to her, highly resented by the surrounding society, is to take lovers among the Arab teachers who lodge in the pension. This defeated and desolate soul feels a strong affinity with Mihyar as someone else capable of seeing the social deterioration around them, and equally helpless before its dynamic. [20] She tries to seduce him, without success. Mihyar, who loves the wife he has left behind and is in no mood for an affair, discovers that the regime in Baghdad has sent agents to file slanderous reports on them to the Algerian authorities. But she perseveres, and when Mihyar falls ill and, in a feverish delirium, clings to her to ward off death, the relationship is consummated. Fullah nurses him back to life, and he starts to identify with her predicament. Bitter fruits Beside these four major characters, the novel includes a variety of secondary figures and sub-plots which amplify its bitter portrait of the human consequences of revolutionary failure in the Arab world. [21] Haydar uses a poetic style to often savage satirical effect. But though suffused with anger, the narrative offers repeated reflection on the sources of the violence—physical and symbolic—it depicts: how much of it stems from the legacy of colonialism and how much is inherent in any class rule or political tyranny? Corruption is treated in the same spirit. Excoriating ‘the commercial madness and the thieves of the new era’, the text goes on: ‘The French had left ten years ago, but the inhabitants began to feel that, before leaving, the invaders had cultivated their seeds in the womb of the city.’ [22] In composition, the novel oscillates between mimesis—narrative purporting to be a true account of events and characters—and diegesis—narrative mediated through the characters, laden with their own questionable comments or generalizations. The four chapters with temporal titles are more diegetic, allowing the characters to vent their subjectivity at ill, while the four with thematic titles are closer to a mimetic record of historical events, furnishing an unwritten history of Iraqi Communism and the uprising in the Marshes. The division is not rigid, the novel moving from one mode to the other without undue formal precaution, in a way that has made misrepresentation of it easier. Historical and intertextual allusions generate different levels of meaning in each—echoes of Sophocles or Shakespeare, references to Eliot and Kazantzakis, recollections of the Zanj and the Qarmatians, [23] against the horizon of ruling cliques sustaining the ‘carcass of this sacred world and protecting the temple of the desert monster floating on oil wells and incantations of Islam’. [24] Banquet for Seaweed unfolds what is essentially a political obituary—at once mordant and poignant—of both communist and nationalist movements in the Arab world of the 1960s and 1970s. In that sense, it is a reckoning with what was then the immediate past. But the novel is also uncannily prophetic. It foresaw the rise of a murderous Islamic fundamentalism, and both civil war in Algeria and the gigantic disasters in store for Iraq, long before either occurred. Haydar’s grasp of the undercurrents of popular feeling in Algeria, of an almost palpable sense of failure and defeat, is remarkable. He captured the fermenting anger that was to explode five years later in the uprising of 1988, and warned of the bloody strife that has raged there ever since. Likewise his portrait of ‘The Rise of Leviathan’ [25] in Iraq, after the rising in the Marshes was crushed, is phenomenal in its intimations of doom and destruction. Some of its pages read like a graphic description of scenes from the Gulf War, or extracts from reports on the condition of the Iraqi poor after a decade of economic sanctions. [26] The novel ends tragically, with the death of one Iraqi and the metaphorical loss of the other: the catastrophe in his homeland, the sullen hostility of a frustrated society in Algiers, the slanders of agents from Baghdad, and his inability to offer a decent future to Asya, eventually lead Mahdi to commit suicide, flinging himself into the sea to become a ‘banquet for seaweed’. Yet the novel is not about thwarted love, but the ruin of political dreams and social hopes. It offers Haydar’s verdict on his generation and on the societies in which he lived and worked, where ideological seaweed proliferates on all sides, strangling ideas and energies, spreading its slimy discourse everywhere. Instruments of Satan Sixteen years later, this formidable work—now a voice from another age—was released in Cairo, under the somewhat incongruous auspices of the Egyptian Ministry of Culture. There was no immediate reaction. But at the end of March 2000 a young writer, Hasan Nur, reviewed the novel in a weekly, Al-Usbu‘, accusing its author of blasphemy. His article was read by Muhammad ‘Abbas, a radiologist who spent several years amassing a small fortune from his practice in Saudi Arabia, and is now a key financial backer of the Labour Party. His attention caught, ‘Abbas delved into the novel and, a month later, published a rabid attack on it under the title ‘Man Yabayi‘uni ‘ala al-Mawt?’ (‘Who Pledges to Die with Me?’) [27] in The People. Rather than treating it as a work of fiction—a form to which he had turned a hand himself [28] —‘Abbas condemned it as the blasphemy of an apostate, meriting death, for a sentence that read: ‘In the age of the atom, space exploration, and the triumph of reason, they rule us with the laws of the Bedouin gods and the teaching of the Qur’an. Shit!’. [29] What provoked his fury was the juxtaposition on the same page, and in the same line, of the last two words, despite the full stop between them, and the fact that, in Arabic, the second could not grammatically be a qualifier of the first. To present the passage as a calculated insult to the faithful, ‘Abbas also had to ignore a reference to the whole utterance as ‘big buzzing ords emanating from the demented mind of Mr Bahili’, in the following paragraph. Pronouncing the author of the novel (and even his father) ‘sinful, obscene, lewd, impertinent apostates’, and the Ministry of Culture ‘the instrument of Satan in the land of the Azhar and Saladin’, ‘Abbas demanded no less than the immediate resignation of the Minister and the ‘demolition of the Ministry with all its organizations’. The publication of such a work in the land of Islam was ‘a filth that stained every Muslim and that can only be removed by sacrificing ourselves as martyrs in removing it. It is the duty of every Muslim to die in order to remove this filth and deserve the mercy of God.’ Calling for a fatwa against it, ‘Abbas ended by exhorting ‘the sheikhs and the students of the Azhar to move, for it is God Himself and the Qur’an, the two most divine in Islam that were sullied, reviled and insulted . . . if you do not move and keep silent you had better stop praying and calling yourselves Muslims, for there will be chaos and great disaster.’ [30] He then rounded off his commination with a list of the names of those responsible for the publication of the novel, their home addresses and telephone and fax numbers. Uproar followed, as The People—with its eye on the approaching elections in November—intensified its campaign in its subsequent two issues. By Friday, May 5th, the affair became the talk of the whole country, and a number of Imams and Mosque preachers delivered condemnations of the novel in their sermons. That evening, the Labour Party held a public meeting about it under the slogan ‘Anger for God’, at which orators linked this episode to every battle from Taha Husain to Nasr Hamid Abu-Zaid. Meanwhile a literary critic, ‘Abd al-‘Aziz Muwafi, had set ‘Abbas’s method of reading to work on ‘Abbas’s own novel, The University Hospital, revealing that it too contained apostate utterances and anti-Islamic conduct and observations. [31] His article, published that morning, was photocopied by someone and distributed among the audience during the perorations from the platform; when people started to read it, there were murmurs of discomfort and dissatisfaction—whereupon the organizers of the meeting called for the copies to be handed in, and chaos reigned. On the following day the Minister of Culture, Faruq Husni, asked the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Culture, Jabir Asfur, to form a committee of leading critics to write a report about the novel in question; it was set up the same day. Meanwhile, an Islamicist lawyer close to the Labour Party laid charges before the Public Prosecutor against the officials in the Ministry of Culture involved in the publication of the novel; they were called in for questioning on Saturday, May 6th. Three of these officials, Ali Abu-Shadi, Ibrahim Aslan and Muhammad Kushaik, riposted by bringing an action against ‘Abbas for slander. Simultaneously, the State Security Department sent the novel to the Azhar to get its assessment of it. The following Sunday, a group of secular intellectuals and artists gathered in the Atelier of Painters and Writers in Cairo to release, in conjuction with the Press Syndicate, a statement in defence of freedom of expression and against the Islamicist campaign. A number of human rights organizations followed suit. ‘Read!’ On Monday, May 8th, the students of the Azhar University were told by their Rector, Ahmad ‘Umar Hashim, that Banquet for Seaweed was certainly blasphemous. In response, they poured into the streets of Cairo, demonstrating against the novel. Riot police and armoured cars met them with tear gas and rubber bullets. They fought back with a hail of stones, and set fire to parked cars. There were casualties on both sides. According to one report, 150 students were admitted to the Azhar University hospital for treatment of wounds, to prevent them from falling into the hands of the police. Another account spoke of many arrests, and a few police injuries. It was also reported that students who were asked ‘Did you read the novel?’ invariably replied ‘No, but our teachers told us it was blasphemous’. Ironically, given that the first word of the Qur’an is the imperative iqra’ (read!), students of the Azhar do not need to perform this deed before they demonstrate. Next day, the National Assembly debated the matter. Rector Hashim, in his capacity as a deputy, severely attacked the novel and demanded that the Minister of Culture appear before the Assembly to answer questions about the case. The Egyptian Writers Union, the Supreme Council for Culture, the Journalists Union, and some independent publishers and journals entered the fray, with declarations against the Islamicist campaign. On May 9th, the Committee of the Supreme Council for Culture published findings strongly in favour of the novel, rebutting charges of apostasy against it—indeed, going so far as to claim that it set out to champion religion. [32] Undeterred, The People widened its campaign with several articles denouncing other novels and books, proving that Banquet for Seaweed was merely the culmination of a pernicious trend which must be uprooted from society. On the following day, under pressure from the National Assembly, Faruq Husni agreed to refer the novel to the Azhar, whence it was solemnly despatched by the Head of the National Assembly, Fathi Surur. By now writers of every political and religious denomination were publishing articles and counter-articles throughout the Arab world for and against the novel, and a large number of independent, and semi-official television stations were debating the issue. Haydar Haydar himself was responding valiantly to the questions of the numerous press and TV reporters who had invaded his little native village of Husain al-Bahr (where, now in his mid-sixties, he has retired to farm and write), calling upon the student demonstrators to read his novel for themselves and make up their own minds about it. The whole history of the struggle for symbolic power was once again paraded and reinterpreted. Stray dogs and swarming flies On May 17th the Azhar issued its ruling. Its verdict damned Banquet for Seaweed on five counts. [33] (i) The Ministry of Culture had not sought the views of the Azhar before publication. (ii) The novel was full of phrases scorning all religions and divinities, including Allah, the Prophet and the Qur’an. (iii) It did not conform to moral values, was often erotic and full of sexual asides. (iv) It insulted all Arab rulers, attributing terrible crimes to them, and called on people to rise up against them. (v) It violated religion, divine law, moral values and political decency. Upon the publication of the ruling, which was signed by no less than the head of the Azhar, Muhammad Sayyid Tantawi, [34] the State Security Department summoned Ibrahim Aslan, the editor of the ‘Horizons of Writing’ series in which the novel had appeared, to an interrogation which lasted from 10pm to 6am—making it clear that Aslan, an independent writer of integrity with a respectable record of work, would be a convenient scapegoat for the establishment. The Azhar ruling outraged the majority of secular intellectuals throughout the Arab world and, on the same day, a number of statements from Lebanese, Syrian and Moroccan writers were published in the press in Egypt and elsewhere, together with protests from the Iraqi Cultural Association in Britain and Sweden. It is telling that Syrian writers who wanted to give succour to the Egyptian campaign against Banquet for Seaweed had to resort to London-based, Saudi-sponsored media. [35] Throughout these weeks The People raised its pitch to a new crescendo, characterizing all who resisted the campaign as swarming flies, stray dogs, queers and criminals. Fiery articles enumerated further lists of unrepentent writers, branded new books as blasphemous, and stepped up the pressure for Faruq Husni, the Minister of Culture, to resign. By now the campaign appeared to be attracting wide public support. Fearing another explosion of anger, the government seized on a small faction in the Labour Party discontented with its leadership, and referred its challenge to the party establishment to the state’s Committee for Parties Affairs (CPA). On May 20th the CPA decreed that Labour Party activities be frozen and The People suspended until the issue of its rightful leadership was resolved—which provoked a new round of articles, this time debating the wisdom of the government’s action and the right of The People to express its opposition to official policies. The leader of the Labour Party, Ibrahim Shukri, started legal proceedings against the CPA, and other political parties denounced its decision. The affair now divided into two different fronts: on the one hand, the right of the Islamicists to express their views; on the other, the character of their crusade against secular and rationalist culture. On May 20th, 350 Egyptian writers and intellectuals signed a petition to the Public Prosecutor assuming co-liability for publication of Banquet for Seaweed with the three impugned officials of the Ministry of Culture, marching to his office to demand that he either press charges collectively against all or drop them against the trio. Meanwhile the Islamicists, fearing that protracted legal procedures to reactivate their party and republish their newspaper would cost them their chances in the forthcoming election, started to dissociate themselves from some of the tone, although not the substance, of ‘Abbas’s campaign. The debate continued throughout June and July, culminating in an article and a legal ruling.  On July 1st a lengthy consideration of the affair by the prominent journalist and former advisor to Nasser, Muhammad Hasanain Haykal, was published in Al-Kutub: Wijhat Nazar. [36] Haykal devoted the first two-thirds of his article to a lengthy account of his role in the Salman Rushdie controversy, his personal contacts at the time, his refusal of Rushdie’s request that he append his name to the list of luminaries defending Rushdie, etc. Citing Marx’s dictum that when history repeats itself, it does so once as tragedy and a second time as farce, he then loftily dismissed the campaign against Banquet for Seaweed—without even deigning to mention the author’s name—as a farce. For, Haykal averred, everyone involved mistook an issue that concerned the use of public funds, to subsidize the reprint of a book that had never been censored in Egypt, for one of freedom of expression. The People, with its dubious pre-electoral agitation against the government, lacked the stature of Khomeini. Faruq Husni and the Ministry of Culture were at fault and, instead of admitting it, mismanaged the ramifications. Both factions had misused great values and grand symbols, from God and religion to reason and free expression, but secular intellectuals had lost the battle before they started, once their opponents had got away with presenting themselves as guardians of faith and morality. Haykal concluded gloomily—and, if only on this point, accurately—that the upshot of the affair would inevitably be a narrowing of the margin of freedom in Egypt. Political atrophy In fact, the self-appointed censors of The People and the Azhar have indeed succeeded in widening the sphere of their influence, and leaving some of their ghosts inside every intimidated intellectual. Over and over again, writers talked about the inhibiting reflexes that result from battles like this. In this sense, it is painfully true that the fragile margin of free expression has diminished. Institutionally, the publication department of the Ministry of Culture is now paralysed and its reprint series suspended, despite repeated promises that its programme would not be affected. On the other hand, the court ruled on July 25th that the CPA’s decision to freeze the Labour Party and suspend its newspaper was unconstitutional. The CPA appealed the decision, and the Labour Party remains in baulk, its newspaper closed. So once again, the running battle for the estate of an ailing political establishment, which has lost virtually all legitimacy, has not focused on its woeful record on the major questions of national or international politics, but has been deflected towards what a regressive opposition sees as the weakest link in its chain—modern culture, which continues to pay the price. One of the most dismal aspects of this contest is that both modernists and traditionalists now appeal to the same political establishment, enhancing its failing powers and restoring shreds of credibility to a regime that had all but lost it. Melancholy, too, is the contrast between the furore and Banquet for Seaweed itself. Comparisons with the Rushdie affair only underline the difference between the two. The Satanic Verses, essentially set in Britain, is a novel about religion, immigration and identity. Sinister and odious though the fundamentalist campaign against it was, there was at least some relation between its themes and the hysteria about it. Banquet for Seaweed, on the other hand, is a political novel about communism and nationalism, the Iraqi and Algerian Revolutions—themes which, two decades after its publication, in a context so reactionary that even the memory of these great movements has largely disappeared, were all but completely displaced by a grotesque fixation with an exclamatory aside of no structural significance for the work, as if religion is now the only issue left in Arab public life. Not all participants in the affair were quite so blind, of course. Haykal, a veteran operator of the period Haydar was writing about, was well aware of what is at stake in Banquet for Seaweed, whose unforgiving portrait of the politics for which he stood could only be anathema to him; the consummate bad faith of his intervention is readily explicable. It is striking how little attention the controversy has paid to the subsequent work of Haydar Haydar himself, who has continued to produce writing of notable imaginative power and uncompromisingly radical intent. Thus his daring fourth novel Mirrors of Fire blends metaphor and poetry to approach the taboo subject of the massacre in Hama in 1984, when the Syrian army devastated one of its own towns, using heavy tanks, fighters and artillery to wipe out Islamicist opposition to the Assad regime; while his latest, The Suns of the Gypsies, explores the world of the Palestinian resistance, tracked by Mossad assassins and haunted by suicide missons, and the brutal indifference and manipulation of the Arab regimes towards it—a theme that could hardly be more timely today. Instead of these central issues, the tics and manias of obscurantism increasingly absorb Arab intellectual life, as the spread of the contagion from Cairo shows. Since the eruption of the campaign against Banquet for Seaweed in Egypt, zealots in the Yemen have assailed the writer ‘Abd al-Karim al-Razihi, forcing him to seek political asylum in Holland; and orchestrated a campaign against Samir al-Yusuf for reprinting one of the classics of modern Yemeni literature, Sana: An Open City by Muhammad ‘Abd al-Wali (1940–73), bringing legal charges against him for disseminating blasphemy. In Saudi Arabia, two books by ‘Abdullah al-Qasimi have been banned under similar accusations. In Algeria the novel Sayyidat al-Maqam (The Hostess) by Wasinin al-A ‘raj was likewise proscribed for impiety. Fundamentalists in Kuwait have launched a legal case against two women writers, Layla al-Uthman and ‘Afaf Shu ‘aib; and in Jordan against the poet Musa Hawamidah. In June, the Egyptian writer Salah-al-Din Muhsin was sentenced to six months suspended imprisonment for publishing four books— ‘Ab‘ati (Abdulati), Irti‘ashat Tanwiriyyah (Flickers of Enlightenment), Musamarah ma’ al-Sama’ (Dialogue with the Sky) and Mudhakkirat Muslim (Diary of a Muslim)—deemed insulting to religion. In these bleak conditions, Arab intellectuals gain nothing by treating for favours from the state or bending to pressures from the zealots. Yet all too often today, instead of working to eliminate the very idea of appointed custodians of religion and morality, they seek to show they are as pious as any fundamentalist, and twist their own works to prove their credentials. If Islam has yet to experience any Reformation, it still remains the duty of intellectuals to make clear that its texts are a collective symbolic legacy of the whole culture, on which no-one has a monopoly of interpretation, and that those who oppose free thinking about them are protecting their own mundane interests and not a sublime truth or divine values. In failing to do so, they merely play into the hands of the Arab establishments. For unless they root the values of rational argument and free imagination in society, not as ideas in opposition to the interests of the masses, but as essential conditions of the people’s liberty and future, they are doomed to re-fight the same battles again and again, from an ever-shrinking margin of freedom of their own. [1] See Language and Symbolic Power, Cambridge 1991, particularly ‘The Economy of Linguistic Exchanges’, pp. 35–102. [2] Until recently none of these institutions taught any foreign languages. [3] One of his successful wars was waged against the fundamentalist Wahhabi movement in the Arabian Peninsula, crushing their revolt and undermining their power base. It took them decades to recover. When they did so, the result was the Saudi kingdom. [4] By the early twentieth century, girls made up 9 per cent of all school pupils in Egypt, the figure rising to 14 in 1910, 18 in 1920, and 22 in 1930. [5] In the works of Muhammad Husain Haykal, Taha Husain, Abbas Mahmud al-Aqqad and Tawfiq al-Hakim, who rewrote the life of Muhammad and a number of his major companions in modern terms. [6] In works like Yahya Haqqi’s Saint’s Lamp and Ali Ahmad Bakathir’s Red Revolutionary; then in Fathi Radwan’s Great Revolutionary, and Nazmi Luqa’s Muhammad: the Message and the Messenger. Luqa was the first Copt to write a life of Muhammad. [7] Abd al-Rahman al-Sharqawi’s Muhammad the Messenger of Freedom. [8] The novel Awlad Haratina (The Children of Our Alley), which appeared in English under the title The Children of Gebelawi, was serialized in Al-Ahram, the Egyptian daily with the widest circulation, but the Azhar objected to it, so it was not published in book form. However in 1966 a Lebanese publisher, Dar al-Adab, produced an edition in Beirut, copies of which were sold in Cairo. Citation of this work in the Swedish Academy’s declaration of award of the Nobel Prize to Mahfouz in 1988 greatly angered the Islamicists, and shortly after the eruption of the Rushdie affair, the leading fundamentalist, Omar Abd al-Rahman—currently imprisoned in the US for his role in the attack on the World Trade Centre—declared that had they killed Mahfouz in 1959 for writing The Children of Our Alley, Rushdie would never have dared write his novel. This was taken as a fresh fatwa to kill Mahfouz. In 1994 an attempt on his life failed, although the assassin plunged a dagger into his neck, leaving him paralysed in his right arm. [9] To all social, economic, legal, political and spiritual problems. Islam, as a comprehensive faith that embraces every aspect of this world and the hereafter, is a basically static ideology in which all is clearly laid down in a finite mould, marking the boundaries of past, present and future in final form. There is no room for change here, only for exegesis, commentary and interpretation. Hermeneutic marginalia are possible, not real or radical mutation. The only acceptable permutation is from the present to the past, from the fallen condition of today’s world to the splendid days of early glory, the haven of formative years. Movement runs backward not forward, and progress is towards immutability and permanence. [10] The more compliant the individual with the Wahhabi version of Islam, the greater their salary became. This offered the Wahhabis a rare opportunity to infiltrate Egypt and exact their revenge on the modernizing legacy of Muhammad Ali, who crushed their early movement and delayed their success for more than a century. [11] These services were neither free, nor conventionally subsidized. Rather, the neo-Islamicists used the idealism of young professionals, and unemployed youth, to offer cheaper services to those who needed them most, not incidentally increasing the resources of their organizations in the process. [12] The call for Islamic literature goes back to numerous articles by the two main Islamic ideologues of the 1950s and 1960s: Abu-l-Hasan al-Nadawi and Sayyid Qutb. But their ideas were developed into full length books during the 1980s: among them, Muhammad Qutb’s Manhaj al-Fann al-Islami (Principles of Islamic Art), Najib al-Kilani’s Al-Islamiyyah wa-l-Madhahib al-Adabiyyah (Islamism and Literary Schools) and Madkhal ila al-Adab al-Islami (Introduction to Islamic Literature), ‘Imad al-Din Khalil’s Al-Naqd al-Islami al-Mu‘asir (Contemporary Islamic Criticism), and Muhammad Ahmad al- ‘Azab’s Fi al-Fikr al-Islami min al-Wijhah al-Adabiyyah (On Islamic Thought: A Literary Perspective). It is significant that all these authors worked for a number of years in the cultural or educational institutions of Saudi Arabia and either published their works while still en poste, or immediately upon return to their home country. [13] The work he submitted for promotion to the chair of Islamic thought in Cairo niversity was branded as too rationalist and secular. A member of the promotion committee, the Islamic activist ‘Abd al-Sabur Shahin, took the case outside the university, preaching against Abu-Zaid in his mosque, while other Islamic activists financed the legal suit against him. [14] There is a sister series devoted to the work of Egyptian writers, Aswat Adabiyyah (Literary Voices), edited by the eminent Egyptian novelist and short-story writer, Muhammad al-Bisati. [15] He has published six collections of short stories: Hakaya al-Nawras al-Muhajir ( Stories of a Migrating Seagull, 1968), Al-Wamd ( The Shining, 1970), Al-Wu‘ul ( Goats, 1978), Al-Fayadan ( The Deluge, 1979), Al-Tamawwujat ( Waves, 1979) and Ghasaq al-Alihah ( The Dusk of the Gods, 1987); and five novels: Al-Fahd ( The Leopard, 1969), Al-Zaman al-Muhish ( Dreary Time, 1973), Walimah Li-A‘shab al-Bahr ( Banquet for Seaweed, 1983), Maraya al-Nar ( Mirrors of Fire, 1992) and Shumus al-Ghajar ( The Suns of the Gypsies, 1997). [16] This was the period in which the bulk of the work of one of the leading theorists of the new Islamicist movements, Sayyid Qutb, was written. [17] This was not the first time an Arab cultural review had based itself on Les Temps Modernes; in 1945 Taha Husain’s Al-Katib al Misri (Egyptian Writer) had used the same model, but remained a purely Egyptian literary journal and ceased publication by 1948. [18] Haydar Haydar, Walimah li-A‘shab al-Bahr (Banquet for Seaweed—henceforward BS ), sixth reprint, Dar Ward, Damascus 1998, p. 11. All references are to this Arabic edition. [19] BS, p. 280. [20] BS, p. 101. [21] The most significant of these is a group of expatriate teachers—Rashid the Palestinian, Abdullah the Syrian, Zulnun the Iraqi and Mursi the Egyptian—who offer an Arab national spectrum that widens the implications of what happens to the two heroes of the novel. [22] BS, p. 81. [23] The Zanj were black slaves employed in the sugar-cane plantations of Southern Iraq in the ninth century, who revolted aganst Abbasid rule and constructed a capital south of Basra that took the Caliph till 883 to destroy. The Qarmatians were an egalitarian Isma’ili sect that rose against the Abbasids some twenty years later. After menacing Syria and Arabia, they set up a state in Bahrain and attacked Baghdad itself. [24] BS, p. 90. [25] The Arabic is Luyathan, from the Arabic root Lawa, to twist and deform, but the origin of the concept is Ugaritic. Being a Syrian, Haydar uses the archaic Ugaritic form lwtn, which is the source of the Biblical Liwyatan, or Leviathan, as the signification of a kingdom of chaos and evil. [26] See, for example, BS pp. 229, 234–5. [27] The term ybayi‘—to pledge an oath of allegiance, or acknowledge the sovereignty of a leader—is a resonantly emotive formula, with the lure of martyrdom, for Muslims vowing to the Prophet to die for Islam. [28] ‘Abbas had published two novels, Al-Hakim Lissa ( The Ruler as a Thief, 1990) and Qasr al-Aini ( The University Hospital, 1994), and a collection of short stories, Mabahith Amn al-Watan ( National Security Department, 1992), but these went unnoticed. He only came to prominence with incendiary articles in The People in the last couple of years. [29] BS, p. 73. [30] Muhammad ‘Abbas, Al-Sha‘b, no. 1460, 28 April 2000. [31] ‘Abd al-Aziz Muwafi, ‘Muhammad ‘Abbas has no aim but fame: he claims to be a guardian of Islamic values . . . Do you know what he wrote!?’, Akhbar al-Adab, no. 356, 7 May 2000. Although the official date of publication of this weekly literary journal is the Sunday of each week, it is usually with newsagents from the preceding Friday. [32] On the grounds that FLN guerrillas are depicted carrying the Qur’an, and Mahdi’s mother sends him off with a Shi’ite ritual of farewell. [33] Ironically, this is the same Azhar that officially rejected the fatwa against Salman Rushdie, and called for a rational dialogue with the author of The Satanic Verses. Its statement at the time declared that ‘Islam does not accept the accusation of blasphemy against Salman Rushdie, for it does not call for killing people without fair trial, especially when there is no crime of killing or treason involved. The principle of considering a man an apostate because of a book he wrote is utterly unacceptable.’ The explanation for the difference is to be found in the friction between the Sunni and Shi’ite religious establishments—the Azhar was irritated by Khomeini’s presumption, but had no qualms about anathemas in its own precincts. [34] This is the very same sheikh of Azhar who travelled to Britain to meet the Archbishop of Canterbury in Britain three years ago, when he condemned the fatwa against Rushdie. [35] See Ghassan al-Imam’s article in Al-Sharq al-Awsat, 23 May 2000, and Sa’id Ramadan al-Buti’s in Al-Hayah, 29 May 2000. [36] ‘‘Ala Atraf al-Din wa-l-Siyasah wa-l-Adab’ (Approaching Religion, Politics and Literature), Al-Kutub: Wijhat Nazar, no. 12, July 2000, pp. 4–13. The journal is a recently founded monthly modelled on the London Review of Books or New York Review of Books, with a good reputation, though expensive for Egyptian readers—an issue of 82 tabloid pages costs ten Egyptian pounds, or two and a half times the price of the reprint of Banquet for Seaweed. Return to Top Download a PDF version of this article New Left Review 5, September-October 2000 Buy this issue: New Left Review 5, September-October 2000 Subscribe to the New Left Review