Sunday, June 6, 2010

Second comment by Undercurrent on the Jews


Undercurrent has left a new comment on your post "RE: New comment on Helen Thomas' comments and apo...":

The big error in Lawrence's analysis, as it always has been, is to assume that there is an alliance between the Left and the Islamists. That somehow the 'friends of my enemy' approach is far reaching enough to use as rigid argument with which to denounce the left. That Islamicists require denouncing is not at issue, that it is safe to denounce Leftists because of an assumed alliance between the two is not at all safe.

Israel must be a headache for those on the right who think in terms of the 'enemy of my friend' approach because it means going along with the notion that Israel is somehow anyone's friend. It isn't. It's only concern is self-perpetuation and that means lying when it's necessary. Fortunately for them, the Western media is happy to take Israeli propaganda at face value -

http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/06/04/israel/index.html

And yet all too often, Israeli lies are exposed and that must be a real problem for those Western governments that offer up their support. It means, for example, maintaining a hypocratical stance against the UN - supporting UN decisions when it suits, ignoring them when it doesn't.

Conversely, the counter arguments used by apologists are easy. Anti-semtimism in all and any form is the primary weapon. Equating critical views to Ismalicist apologies is another. Likewise, the justification that somehow the holocaust excuses Israeli actions is also false.

From a logical standpoint none of this will wash and I'd think that must be a real problem for Lawrence.


LAWRENCE RESPONDS TO UNDERCURRENT:
            I'm always happy to consider new arguments; however I hope realize you haven't produced any.  You refer to my "big error" but you don't produce any evidence that I have committed it.  In regard to your assertion that there is no alliance between the Left and the Islamists, I began reading about this back in 2004.  The trigger was David Horowitz's book Unholy Alliance, Radical Islam and the American Left.  He also formed an investigative organization as did several other groups.  I read a lot of material at the time.  That there is an alliance of sorts seems incontrovertible.  By alliance I mean taking the same positions on a number of issues.  I have unsubscribed to Horowitz's website because he reminds me of the NRA (which I am no longer a member of).  Everything is viewed with alarm.  I can only take so much alarm and then I have to switch subjects.  I think here of Ronald Sanders who wrote several books on the plight of the Jews and died of bone and liver cancer at age 56. 
            Moving on to your second paragraph, no I have no headache when I examine the choices facing Israel.  I did have one for awhile when I thought the Obama administration might capitulate to Iran over their construction of nuclear weapons.  That could, in effect still happen.   Ahmadinejad is very much a committed Islamist.  He has built a road so that when the Mahdi returns he can drive in comfort to his destination.  I don't want to make fun of his beliefs, but I do want to show that they are inimical to Western (especially Israeli) well being.  In relation to Iranian goals, you must know that Iran created the Hezbollah during the time of the Ayatollah Khomeini as its "evangelistic" arm.  At the time Khomeini had hopes that the surrounding nations, the former members of the USSR could be converted to Khomeini's beliefs -- which by the way are virtually identical to Sayyid Qutb's except for the Twelver Shiite emphasis.
            Khomeini's goals were undermined by Iran's war with Iraq.  Whether he would have converted the former SSRs that were Islamic to his beliefs is debatable, but Saddam Hussein essential put an end to him.  The war with Iraq ended but Khomeini died soon afterwords of Prostate cancer. 
            But what to do about Hezbollah.  It has been tied to a number of terrorist strikes but for the most part has contented itself to reside in Lebanon.  Still, it is very much an arm of Iran -- not precisely an extension of Iran but very much tied to Iranian interests.  Those of us who are not concentrating on blaming Israel for Middle-Eastern ills can see that it is to Iran's interest to supply arms to Hamas on Israel's border.  To prevent that Israel inspects all ships heading in that direction.  Are you outraged that they inspect these ships and remove weapons and supplies that might be used against them?  Don't express this outrage too vociferously or I might find myself comparing it to the outrage of the Islamists in Iran and Lebanon.
            But I never said that Qutb's philosophy was accepted by the Left.  As far as I know it isn't.  The Left naively continues to embrace the idea that what is going on in the Middle East is "Class Warfare."  They ignore the religious and ideological aspects of Islamism.  I don't blame them for not wanting to devote the time necessary to educate themselves on them -- aside from their believing that they aren't important.  I spent several years studying those matters and developed headaches aplenty.

2 comments:

Undercurrent said...

Lawrence asks whether I'm 'outraged that they inspect these ships and remove weapons and supplies that might be used against them.'

Two points:

Firstly, Lawrence can't have seen the list of items Israel doesn't want imported into Gaza. It includes coriander and wheelchairs.

Secondly, Israel wasn't giving the option of inspecting the shipments and allowing them to continue. It wasn't allowing any ships to dock in Gaza regardless of what they were carrying.

Am I outraged? No. Israel's actions have been going on for so long that it's latest misdemeanor doesn't bring with it the kind of reaction that might be termed 'outrage'. But this brings with it another valid point.

One of the principle arguments put forward for opposing Islamicists is that they seek to destroy western culture. Whether that's actually true or not is not that relevant. What's important is that Israel has abandoned the rudiments of that culture in it's fight aginst its enemies. Israel is a democratic nation, yet it behaves as though its a fascist dictatorship.

Now is that because its enemies are implacable and that approach is the only option? Or is Israel opposed by so many because of its behaviour? Perhaps a mix of the two?

Lawrence also asserts that 'The Left naively continues to embrace the idea that what is going on in the Middle East is "Class Warfare"'.

Interesting. What Lawrence and the right fails to note is that economic conditions can help to push people towards Islamicists. The decision to become a fanatic is not one that is resolved exclusively through religious ideology; rather it is one that, in the eyes of the fanatic, is justified, in the end, by that ideology. But provide improved economic conditions and the decision won't be reached.

This is where Iran is key because of all the middle eastern states, it's the one that has produced the largest middle class. Conversely, it has seemingly sustained a fanatical religious elite that has managed to dominate the political system. In this respect, a test of the left's outlook is what happens in Iran. Will it cast off the religious elite? Or will economic prosperity sustain it?

Billy Blogblather said...

I have written in another venue, that for me you awaken memories of the late 50's and early 60's when the political right wing was all abuzz with the sky-is-falling Communist scare. Some people, I said (in different words) seem to need an enemy to focus on, else their lives have no center. And indeed I am probably just such a person. Why else am I here but to rant and rage? It makes me feel alive. That's sad, but that's true. Your position regarding radical Islamism is, I presume, shared by most of the world -- you're not very radical in this. What seems to me radical in your thinking is your apparent belief that all Islamism is or has become radicalized. You're arguments in defense of Israel, it seems to me, are not so much in defense of Israel as in opposition to anything Islamic. Islamism is your mew Communism. OK, then, that's your game and you seem to be enjoying it. Carry on, as Ritchie would say.