Is anti-Zionism anti-Semitic?

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S. Artesian
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Jun 19 2016 03:50
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what Stinas, the thoroughgoing defender of 'revolutionary defeatism' against all imperialist war, is surely saying in his criticism of the 'left' is that it supported the military destruction of Israel in an imperialist war against the surrounding Arab states.

That's "surely" what you want him to say, surely not what he said. And it's not even close to the real context-- as it's quite possible to oppose the legitimacy of the state of Israel without supporting the surrounding Arabic governments.

Look, there's no problem in recognizing the integrity and insight of a steadfast revolutionist while at the same time identifying his/her mistakes.

Likening the opposition to the formation of Israel to "completing Hitler's work" is performing the conflation of anti-Zionism with antisemitism so essential to pro-Israel ideologues.

Zeronowhere
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Jun 19 2016 08:14
Schmoopie wrote:
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Sure, it's a mine field, never mind the idea of using the 'J' word so often on an anarchist communist forum and potentially sounding like the fash.

Fair play factvalue. I feel at ease now to get it off my chest:
Jew Arab Jew Jew Jew Jew Arab Arab Arab Jew....
Long live the civil war of the proletariat against the BOURGEOISIE!

Surely we wanted that to end, though?

Might as well keep on going with saying the word 'Jew' instead of this.

It's also less civil, which is a plus.

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Can’t those on the left who call for the destruction of Israel, that is to say the achieve-ment of the work of Hitler

If only Hitler had actually achieved this.

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Auld-bod
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Jun 19 2016 09:55

Zeronowhere #303
‘Quote:
Can’t those on the left who call for the destruction of Israel, that is to say the achieve-ment of the work of Hitler

If only Hitler had actually achieved this.’

This is very ambiguous. I feel it was a great pity he or his party achieved anything.

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Alf
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Jun 19 2016 12:00

Artesian wrote: "it's quite possible to oppose the legitimacy of the state of Israel without supporting the surrounding Arabic governments".

But the question is this: if the state of Israel is not "legitimate", does it mean that the Assad regime in Syria (which has been slaughtering its own population for five years now), or the Iraqi state (first set up by British and French imperialism, and then re-fashioned by American imperialism after 2003), or the 'Islamic' regimes of Saudi or Iran are in some ways 'legitimate'; or does each one of them need a kind of democratic revolution as a first step towards normalising the class struggle?

Some (bourgeois) leftists have argued for a democratic revolution in Iran and Saudi for example. And many more, starting from the notion of the special illegitimacy of the Israeli state, have supported the military campaigns of the Arab regimes against Israel, supposedly because these regimes are seen as having some kind of legitimacy. I am not saying that Artesian supports any of these policies, but - as variants of the dominant ideology - they are much more prevalent than the position of the very small minority which stands for genuine internationalism. And it seems to me that the whole argument about the legitimacy of this or that state opens the door to the nationalist and pro-war ideology of the capitalist left.

radicalgraffiti
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Jun 19 2016 13:08
Auld-bod wrote:
Zeronowhere #303
‘Quote:
Can’t those on the left who call for the destruction of Israel, that is to say the achieve-ment of the work of Hitler

If only Hitler had actually achieved this.’

This is very ambiguous. I feel it was a great pity he or his party achieved anything.

i don't see any ambiguity, zeronowhere seems to be wishing the holocaust succeeded

factvalue
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Jun 19 2016 13:32
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i don't see any ambiguity, zeronowhere seems to be wishing the holocaust succeeded

That's what made his statement ambiguous.

S. Artesian
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Jun 19 2016 14:47
Alf wrote:
Artesian wrote: "it's quite possible to oppose the legitimacy of the state of Israel without supporting the surrounding Arabic governments".

But the question is this: if the state of Israel is not "legitimate", does it mean that the Assad regime in Syria (which has been slaughtering its own population for five years now), or the Iraqi state (first set up by British and French imperialism, and then re-fashioned by American imperialism after 2003), or the 'Islamic' regimes of Saudi or Iran are in some ways 'legitimate'; or does each one of them need a kind of democratic revolution as a first step towards normalising the class struggle?

Some (bourgeois) leftists have argued for a democratic revolution in Iran and Saudi for example. And many more, starting from the notion of the special illegitimacy of the Israeli state, have supported the military campaigns of the Arab regimes against Israel, supposedly because these regimes are seen as having some kind of legitimacy. I am not saying that Artesian supports any of these policies, but - as variants of the dominant ideology - they are much more prevalent than the position of the very small minority which stands for genuine internationalism. And it seems to me that the whole argument about the legitimacy of this or that state opens the door to the nationalist and pro-war ideology of the capitalist left.

Alf, you've become a master at saying "I am not saying that.." as a way to say what you pretend to not be saying. Better for all if you would just actually say what it is you think you are saying, or what you think I am saying. When I get to someone who says "I am not saying..." makes me wonder why he or she is saying it at all. At best it's a waste of time; at worst dishonest.

I've stated clearly, in other threads, locations, venues, that there is no such thing, no such possibility of a "democratic revolution." (Actually, I'd be willing to take it further, and say that there has never been any such thing as a "democratic revolution).

I've stated quite clearly that I don't support any Arab states in anything such states do, no more than I would support the US in anything, and I mean anything, it does. I've stated quite clearly that there are no prospects for "imagining" a fraternization of peoples without a workers' social revolution that overthrows the regimes, economies, class structure of Israel and the surrounding states. I've stated quite clearly that one can oppose the legitimacy of Israel without endorsing the policies or actions of the surrounding states. And clearly one can do precisely that, as one could oppose the legitimacy of the apartheid state in South Africa without supporting the governments of Angola, or Mozambique, or the ANC itself.

However, ignoring the specific configuration of apartheid or Zionism, denying that there is anything unique to the apartheid or Zionist projects is just plain stupid, as well as being ahistorical. You might as well, in fact you are arguing, that there is no need to address the specifics of racism, of dispossession, of expulsion, of discrimination because such an address distracts from the "general" "overall" struggle against capitalism, when in fact the opposite is the case-- it is only through the confrontation with the specific expressions of capitalism can the overall system of exploitation be destroyed.

What you offer is an abstraction that is blind to the concrete. Do Jews have the "right" to exist? Certainly. That's not the issue. Do Jews have a "right" to an exclusive state? That question cannot be answered by answering "all states are bad. all states are oppressive. all states are manifestations of capitalism." What's lost in that non-answer are the specific terms of oppression, of capitalism, compressed into and manifested by the perpetuation of Israel.

You have an apartheid state constructed and perpetuated by and through the specific dispossession of a specific population; the specific attacks and assaults on a specific populations. There is no way to separate Israel's existence from these precise conditions. The question is not one of "rights." It is a question of power, of property, of institutions.

S. Artesian
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Jun 19 2016 14:50
Zeronowhere wrote:
If only Hitler had actually achieved this.

Complete total anti-revolutionary, anti-working class, racist, bullshit.

radicalgraffiti
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Jun 19 2016 15:12
factvalue wrote:
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i don't see any ambiguity, zeronowhere seems to be wishing the holocaust succeeded

That's what made his statement ambiguous.

to be ambiguous there would need to be another obvious reading

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Alf
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Jun 19 2016 15:17

Yes, I agree in future not to say that I'm not saying. What I am saying is that the far left - Trotskyism, Maoism, etc - is counter-revolutionary, pro-war, and has no answer to the anti-semitism of the national states they support. This is a thread about the influence of anti-semitism on the anti-Zionism of the left, after all, not about Artesian's positions. But I would like to know more about where you stand on these political currents.

I don't think that problems of racism, oppression and dispossession should be ignored. The problem is that we are faced with a very extensive political apparatus whose function is to frame these problems in falsely radical, bourgeois terms, and thus prevent them from being addressed from a proletarian standpoint. And that again is the role of the left.

Zeronowhere's statement about Hitler is gob-smacking: I think he needs to explain what he means, but he will still need to retract it.

Zeronowhere
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Jun 19 2016 15:29
S. Artesian wrote:
Zeronowhere wrote:
If only Hitler had actually achieved this.

Complete total anti-revolutionary, anti-working class, racist, bullshit.

Alright, but what does the 'S' stand for?

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Joseph Kay
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Jun 19 2016 16:57
Zeronowhere wrote:
Quote:
Can’t those on the left who call for the destruction of Israel, that is to say the achieve-ment of the work of Hitler

If only Hitler had actually achieved this.

You'd better explain yourself.

S. Artesian
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Jun 19 2016 17:01
Zeronowhere wrote:
S. Artesian wrote:
Zeronowhere wrote:
If only Hitler had actually achieved this.

Complete total anti-revolutionary, anti-working class, racist, bullshit.

Alright, but what does the 'S' stand for?

S. = Styrofoam

factvalue
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Jun 19 2016 17:13
S.Artesian wrote:
Well let's do more than hope that the nature of this struggle is not-containable within the framework of UN resolutions. We are talking about class struggle, aren't we? Is there a realistic alternative to a worker-led social revolution that dismantles the Israeli military force, and the military forces of the Arab states? I don't think so.

I think we can agree that the ultimate goal is the evaporation of the UN via the destruction of the capitalist state form. But in the immediate present, on the subject of getting your fingers dirty with the details on the ground, and taking into account what Alf says here

Alf wrote:
I don't think that problems of racism, oppression and dispossession should be ignored. The problem is that we are faced with a very extensive political apparatus whose function is to frame these problems in falsely radical, bourgeois terms, and thus prevent them from being addressed from a proletarian standpoint. And that again is the role of the left.

would it really take us tactically closer to our shared objectives or enable the extraction of the maximum possible justice for those most directly involved to completely ignore the current balance of forces and public opinion and issue proclamations which are practically of no more efficacy than the mantras of an other-worldly cult? What is the point of rigidly advocating a goal which has exactly zero possibility of being achieved and in my opinion will be counterproductive, allowing Israel the pretext to continue 'experimenting' in its arms/mercenary expertise advertising labs in Gaza and Lebanon?

Alf, taking account of the asymmetry of the Israel-Palestine 'conflict', do you have any practical proposals which could be implemented immediately to improve the situation as it stands?

factvalue
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Jun 19 2016 17:21
radicalgraffiti wrote:
factvalue wrote:
Quote:
i don't see any ambiguity, zeronowhere seems to be wishing the holocaust succeeded

That's what made his statement ambiguous.

to be ambiguous there would need to be another obvious reading

Another obvious meaning would be that Zeronowhere was issuing one of those confused outbursts - of the kind that Galloway emits e.g. about an Israeli-free Bradford - possibly fuelled by anger, possibly a brain fart, expressing a general desire for the dismantling of an explicitly racist religious state in the middle east. But it's also quite possible that it's an outright expression of nazi sympathies, ZN can speak for themselves.

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Joseph Kay
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Jun 19 2016 17:28
factvalue wrote:
ZN can speak for themselves.

Indeed.

Zeronowhere: In consideration of being a long-registered account you're not being instabanned. Now explain yourself.

Zeronowhere
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Jun 19 2016 17:47
factvalue wrote:
radicalgraffiti wrote:
i don't see any ambiguity, zeronowhere seems to be wishing the holocaust succeeded

That's what made his statement ambiguous.

For an outburst, it was quite brief. In general, Hitler presumably did not take aim at an invasive state formed by Western capital through the displacement of the Arabs. This would, at the least, be anachronistic, and quite impressive a feat. Doing so would be highly admirable at that time.

People deeming causes guilty for a vague association with the Nazis doing so, for whatever reason, is a case where dissociation from the Nazis is not necessary, because it would imply taking their association literally.

My sympathies as they may be with NSDAP are not really the question. That said, they did have some interest in mysticism, as well as Indian movements to get rid of the recent British colonialists - was this truly racism against whites? -, so in some sense it's perhaps possible that they did actually fight Israel in the near-future. In this they have superceded the wildest dreams of some 'ordinarily' socialist sci-fi authors.

Edit: Replied before noting the previous post by a mod or whatever. Hitler might have been banned from this site, they would also eventually have been banned from reactionary fora, I don't take such a ban or threat to pertain much to anything distinguishing this forum from those.

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Khawaga
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Jun 19 2016 17:51

What the fuck are you on about. You're literally typing up nonsense.

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Serge Forward
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Jun 19 2016 17:57

'Kin'ell. I'm gobsmacked.

Zeronowhere
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Jun 19 2016 17:57

You're supposed to wait until I say something about the sexualisation of under-age kids before really piling it on like that presumably intended.

factvalue
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Jun 19 2016 18:11
Zeronowhere wrote:
factvalue wrote:
radicalgraffiti wrote:
i don't see any ambiguity, zeronowhere seems to be wishing the holocaust succeeded

That's what made his statement ambiguous.

For an outburst, it was quite brief. In general, Hitler presumably did not take aim at an invasive state formed by Western capital through the displacement of the Arabs. This would, at the least, be anachronistic, and quite impressive a feat. Doing so would be highly admirable at that time.

factvalue wrote:
Another obvious meaning would be that Zeronowhere was issuing one of those confused outbursts

Zeronowhere wrote:
People deeming causes guilty for a vague association with the Nazis doing so, for whatever reason, is a case where dissociation from the Nazis is not necessary, because it would imply taking their association literally.

I've got to say

factvalue wrote:
that Zeronowhere was issuing one of those confused outbursts

again here, not because of the clunky phraseology, I don't actually mind a sliver of mock-rococo with me baloney, but because there isn't anything vague about mentioning Hitler in the same breath as suggesting that it would have been great if he'd succeeded (at anything really).

Zeronowhere wrote:
My sympathies as they may be with NSDAP are not really the question.

I think they might be.

Zeronowhere wrote:
That said, they did have some interest in mysticism, as well as Indian movements to get rid of the recent British colonialists - was this truly racism against whites? -, so in some sense it's perhaps possible that they did actually fight Israel in the near-future. In this they have superceded the wildest dreams of some 'ordinarily' socialist sci-fi authors.

See above reference to 'confused' (however brief) outbursts.

Zeronowhere wrote:
Edit: Replied before noting the previous post by a mod or whatever. Hitler might have been banned from this site, they would also eventually have been banned from reactionary fora, I don't take such a ban or threat to pertain much to anything distinguishing this forum from those.

I think it's safe to say that Hitler would have been banned had he strayed on here. Have you been following this thread at all?

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libcom
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Jun 19 2016 20:16

Admin: Zeronowhere has been banned.

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Serge Forward
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Jun 19 2016 20:51

What the fuck was all that about??? Couldn't work out if it was irony or proper fash stuff. That Zeronowhere was a long time poster as well but there was some nasty shit lurking underneath the surface.

factvalue
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Jun 19 2016 20:53

He just kept on pushing it over the borderline.

freemind
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Jun 19 2016 21:23

I had to retread the posts as I couldn't believe the rubbish the nazi scum was writing

factvalue
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Jun 20 2016 23:00

Anyway, there's not a single scrap of evidence to support the ludicrous claim that anti-Semitism poses a major threat in the Western world, so a large part of this thread has amounted to little more than people mistaking (bewilderingly ponderous) political posturing for political positions and I've totally lost interest. Good luck to you.

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Jun 21 2016 06:11

And yet even on a libertarian communist forum, on this very thread in fact, a poster expresses extreme antisemitic views....Perhaps the problem is deeper than factvalue thinks.

I was planning to respond to factvalue's question to me about 'immediate proposals' in the situation, and his argument (actually directed against Artesian I think) that calling for workers' revolution in the region is just a mantra. I am going away for a week or so but will give some thought to a response, even if he has stopped posting on the thread.

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Jun 21 2016 06:18
factvalue wrote:
Anyway, there's not a single scrap of evidence to support the ludicrous claim that anti-Semitism poses a major threat in the Western world

Funny, I don't know who on this thread has made that claim. In fact, it's exactly tangents made of straw like that which made me lose interest a while ago..

Alf wrote:
And yet even on a libertarian communist forum, on this very thread in fact, a poster expresses extreme antisemitic views....Perhaps the problem is deeper than factvalue thinks.

My thoughts exactly..

factvalue
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Jun 21 2016 11:23

.. that's straightforward contradiction. Fair play comrade, it takes courage to make a fool of yourself.

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Jun 21 2016 13:12

I think if you think about it (and you might have to try particularly hard), saying something exists and is a problem is not the same as saying it "poses a major threat in the Western world"..