Zionist Hegemony

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Tojiah
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Nov 10 2011 14:34

As far as I know, the Holocaust, as well as the Leninist and then Stalinist purges were responsible for decimating the competition for Zionism among world Jewry, such as the Bund. That is not to say that Zionism wasn't a very strong force beforehand, but it made their jobs much easier.

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Nov 10 2011 18:27

Let's not stray into side issues away from cause and effect here. The establishment of Israel was created by a war 2 years after the Holocaust. Whatever difference to international jewry's view of Zionism was made by the Holocaust did not effect the outcome of that war or the reasons for the outcome.

syndicalist
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Nov 11 2011 16:55

So, you're saying that it was British imperialism and British imperiliam alone?

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Nov 11 2011 23:30
syndicalist wrote:
So, you're saying that it was British imperialism and British imperiliam alone?

To all intents and purposes, yeah! Russian pogroms kick-started Zionism but it was going nowhere without a sponsor and that was Britain first and last. Outrage at the Holocaust didn't contribute anything to the establishment of Israel - you tell me how it did! Neither did it affect the war - you tell me how it did! Neither did it affect the UN partition plan - you tell me how it did!

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Khawaga
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Nov 11 2011 23:40

Aren't you guys forgetting the Dreyfus affiar? Pretty pivotal event in the history of Zionism, after all it did lead Hertz to write Der Judenstaat.

syndicalist
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Nov 12 2011 01:23

Well, I see the point about British sponsorhip. Beyond that I would say we disagree to the extent that there were other causes which allowed for the ideology of zionism to take hold amongst a majprity of Jewish people.

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Tojiah
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Nov 12 2011 05:07

Clearly there has to be just one cause, and one cause alone. There could not have been other contributing factors at all. Outrage at the Holocaust could not have swayed UN members to vote for a Partition Plan they could have otherwise rejected, nor could it have pushed the West German government to pay reparations to Israel, thus improving its economy immensely, nor could it have given impetus to the American Jewish community, thus encouraging the US ruling class to align with it on a regional level. Nope, it's just the British, only the British, and nothing but the British.

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Nov 12 2011 13:17
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Outrage at the Holocaust could not have swayed UN members to vote for a Partition Plan they could have otherwise rejected

Harry S. Truman was crucial in getting the General Assembly to agree partition and had made clear his support for the Zionist cause before WWII and the Holocaust; on May 25, 1939, following the British White Paper of 1939 that limited Jewish immigration, Truman inserted a remark in the Congressional Record condemning the White paper as a repudiation of British obligations.

Truman wrote in his memoirs, "The question of Palestine as a Jewish homeland goes back to the solemn promise that had been made to them [the Jews] by the British in the Balfour Declaration of 1917 - a promise which had stirred the hopes and the dreams of these oppressed people. This promise, I felt, should be kept, just as all promises made by responsible, civilised governments should be kept."

The immediate circumstances in which the vote was taken also support my argument: -

The UN met in special session in April to form a special UNSCOP committee that would come up with a solution for Palestine. The USSR was surprisingly no longer opposed to partition. On May 14, Ambassador Gromyko announced to the UN that whereas the USSR favored a binational state, if this proved impossible to achieve, the USSR would support partition.

In July of 1947, while UNSCOP was in Palestine, the British turned the Exodus immigrant ship back to Europe. Following a night-long hand to hand battle, immigrants rescued from concentration camps languished on the hot filthy decks in Haifa as newsreel cameras whirred away. All of this was observed by UNSCOP chairman Sandstrom. When the passengers were ultimately returned to Hamburg Germany, the cameras and reporters were there again. A vast wave of public sentiment for partition and a Jewish state was generated. Support for Israel in the United States was not a function of the Jewish vote alone; 65% of Americans supported partition according to a poll taken in late1947.

West German reparations were a sideshow in Israeli economic development - what % of the Israeli economy did they constitute? Can anyone seriously argue that the state was teetering on the brink and would have gone under if not for this?

If the Holocaust accounted for US support for Israel, how come there was a time-gap before this happened, during which Israel looked as much to the USSR as to the West? See on 9 March 1949 the Basic Principles of the ISraeli Government Programme. The first of the five principles of foreign policy read, “Loyalty to the principles of the United Nations Charter and friendship with all freedom-loving states, and in particular with the United States and the Soviet Union.”

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Nov 12 2011 18:50

In fact it took until the Korean War in 1950 for Israel to come over to the US camp in the Cold War. WIthout that, the Jewish lobby in the USA would have had a damn hard time arguing their case in the McCarthyite era.

I think the Holocaust has been the most conventional, easiest and poorly analysed reason put forward to account for Israel's existence. It is ahistorical from beginning to end. Its effect is limited to the limited reparations sent by West Germany, and even that had a lot more to do with West German authorities looking to their own future. To them, acknowledging and saying sorry for the Holocaust was a straightforward way of avoiding the kind of de-stabilising reparations which Germany had been subjected to at Versailles.

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Aren't you guys forgetting the Dreyfus affair? Pretty pivotal event in the history of Zionism, after all it did lead Hertz to write Der Judenstaat.

Again, we are talking just about another initial trigger here, like the Russian pogroms; the decisive stage in the transformation of the emerging ideology into something which had real political purchase, via its sponsor, came with the Balfour Declaration. The Mandate gave it tangible successes, visa its sponsor and then British action in the war and after it pushed it over the line into statehood.

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Nov 12 2011 18:58
Pengwern wrote:
In fact it took until the Korean War in 1950 for Israel to come over to the US camp in the Cold War. WIthout that, the Jewish lobby in the USA would have had a damn hard time arguing their case in the McCarthyite era.

Which was quite a few years after the Holocaust.

And again, you seem to think that every single move has to have had only one dominant cause. How successful would Truman had been in his endeavors without the Holocaust? How would the USSR and its tributaries have voted?

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Nov 12 2011 20:10
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How successful would Truman had been in his endeavours without the Holocaust?

Truman was not in any sense the vehicle of US Zionists. Truman's support for a Jewish state remained cautious and conditional. He was especially irritated by the torrent of support for a Jewish state from Zionists, and became more so as time went on. On October 17, 1947, Truman wrote to Senator Claude Pepper regarding mail he received during the deliberations of UNSCOP:

"I received about 35,000 pieces of mail and propaganda from the Jews in this country while this matter was pending. I put it all in a pile and struck a match to it -- I never looked at a single one of the letters because I felt the United Nations Committee was acting in a judicial capacity and should not be interfered with."

Neither did he rely on international sympathy to get the vote for partition through the UN Assembly. He used bribery, threats and arm-twisting, not the Holocaust: -

The partition resolution required a 2/3 majority to pass, and it became evident that due to Arab pressure and resistance to the US by third-world countries, it might not pass. On November 25, a Tuesday, UN General Assembly members, acting as an ad hoc committee on Palestine, voted. The partition resolution passed the "committee" vote, twenty-five to thirteen with seventeen abstentions. However, this vote was one one short of the 2/3 majority that would be needed to pass the General Assembly itself.

The Arab countries exerted pressure against partition. Pressure from Zionists, US officials and former officials was brought to bear on countries that were intending to vote against partition. Greece was threatened with loss of foreign aid. Apparently on the prompting of former Secretary of State Stettinus, tire manufacturer Harvey Firestone threatened Liberia with a rubber embargo. Paraguay, the Philippines, Haiti and other countries reversed their positions and voted for partition. Though newspapers accused State Department officials of acting against partition, at least some State department officials were directly involved in lobbying for it. Dean Rusk, head of the State Department's UN desk in Washington, later wrote, "when President Truman decided to support partition, I worked hard to implement it....The pressure and arm-twisting applied by American and Jewish representatives in capital after capital to get that affirmative vote are hard to describe." The vote was again postponed to Saturday November 29, one more day, at the request of the Arabs. Greece voted against partition anyway, but other countries changed their vote. The partition resolution was duly passed.

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How successful would Truman had been in his endeavours without the Holocaust? How would the USSR and its tributaries have voted?

Truman did not and did not have to persuade the Soviets, via the Holocaust or any other argument. On May 14, 1947, Gromyko announced to the UN that whereas the USSR favoured a binational state, if this proved impossible to achieve, the USSR would support partition.

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Which was quite a few years after the Holocaust

The Korean war started on June 25, 1950, North Korean armies moved southward across the 38th parallel in an invasion of South Korea.

Anti-communist witch-hunting started with Truman, not McCarthy, and it started two weeks after he presented to the country the Truman Doctrine for Greece and Turkey. Truman issued, on March 22, 1947, Executive Order 9835, initiating a program to search out any "infiltration of disloyal persons" in the U.S. government. In their book The Fifties, Douglas Miller and Marion Nowack comment:

“Though Truman would later complain of the "great wave of hysteria" sweeping the nation, his commitment to victory over communism, to completely safeguarding the United States from external and internal threats, was in large measure responsible for creating that very hysteria. Between the launching of his security program in March 1947 and December 1952, some 6.6 million persons were investigated".

Truman's executive order on loyalty in 1947 required the Department of Justice to draw up a list of organisations it decided were "totalitarian, fascist, communist or subversive . . . or as seeking to alter the form of government of the United States by unconstitutional means." Not only membership in, but also "sympathetic association" with, any organisation on the Attorney General's list would be considered in determining disloyalty.

And McCarthy started his anti-communist crusade in 1950.

SO where is this time-lag and what is its supposed significance?

And let's not forget the Rosenberg cas! How, in these circumstances, could a Jewish ZIonist lobby have formed had Israel been close to the USSR?

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Nov 12 2011 23:25
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How would the USSR and its tributaries have voted?

Already explained that they had already made up their minds in favour of partition, so Truman did not have to work on them.

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Nov 12 2011 23:35
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you seem to think that every single move has to have had only one dominant cause

To me, dialectics is about looking for the interrelationships in cause and effect but this does not mean exaggerating the role played by minor or transitory factors if this is what they are. Where there is a dominant factor which plays a decisive role consistently, it is important to to say so.

Questions about the Israeli state became less and less to do with Britain as the 1950s wore on, but Zionism retained the framework of divisions it acquired during the Mandate. Jabotinsky's revisionists became Likud and Ben Gurion's Labour ZIonism stayed the same, ruling the state well into the 1970s, by which time it had had a new sponsor for almost a quarter of a century.