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Christchurch Massacre, Some Bad Responses from the Left.

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Incredibly moving: New Zealand mosque shooting: Children perform impromptu haka in tribute to murdered classmates

Would that we could say the same about the response from some on the British left.

“It seems beyond doubt that what did motivate the killer”, writes Lindsey German, the Convener of the Stop the War Coalition, “and his potential accomplices was precisely the ideology of fascism and far right ideas, which have at their centre the scapegoating of minorities of various sorts, but also the destruction of any kind of left political presence, the eradication of the trade unions, and the promotion of ‘white culture’ as superior to any other.”

We get no further than these recycled truisms,  in describing the ideas behind this murder’s attack in Socialist Worker, “He declared himself an “eco-fascist” most inspired by Oswald Mosley, leader of the British Union of Fascists in the 1930s.” Tomáš Tengely-Evans

While the SWP blames a “climate of Islamophobia” German puts the origins in capitalism, which apparently, always has a “pre-eminent form of racism”. Without explaining how private ownership and the free market, or neo-liberalism,  selected this form, the Counterfire leader  continues, ” the mainstream politicians and media who have spent the last decade and more attacking Muslims on a regular basis, decrying their dress and eating habits, declaring them subscribers to a uniquely violent and pro-terrorist religion, and using the horrific grooming cases to attribute blame to Muslim men in general.” The conclusion, “Islamophobia is encouraged and sometimes orchestrated by states, governments, police forces, and in this sense is the major racism in Europe and North America.”  (Capitalism always has a pre-eminent form of racism; it’s our task to identify, locate and defeat it, argues Lindsey German.)

The massacre in Christchurch is, to German,  the product of Islamophobia. – fear of Islam, a religion.

Apparently this  is “no accident”.

Are we surprised when all this happens that some of the filth becomes a motivator for those who are willing to use physical violence to kill Muslims, and to justify it in the name of the ‘clash of civilisations’ or ‘preserving western culture’? Are we surprised also when, having waged war on Muslim countries for close on two decades, western societies have to demonise the people whose countries they have invaded and occupied?

One of the best known faces of the Stop the War Coalition  therefore dispenses with the need to look at the ideology of Brenton Tarrant, he is just the vehicle of greater forces. The Great Replacement, the ‘anti-imperialist’ Red-Brown Identitarian ideas of the killer (very far from reducible to concern about Islam), are, ignored. For the SWP,  his ideas, after being related to Oswald Mosley by the SWP, are, equally reduced to the “climate” of hostility, not just to people, but to a religion.

While it the way they underlined ideology seemed a step forward to see ideas being taken seriously, as a material force, two steps backwards for German and it’s all down to capitalism.

But how exactly does capitalism generate hatred of Muslims?

The revolutionary socialist will doubtless reply that Islamophobia is a product of Western military interventions, which are, it goes without saying, led by capitalist countries. Few would even begin to account for prejudices, or organised hatred,, such as anti-Semitism, in such terms.

Above all can the present clashes in the Middle East be understood through the classical ‘anti-imperialist’ angle?

Let’s take the most recent case: is the Assad regime and the civil war in Syria a product of the ‘West’?

Rohini Hensman suggests that the attempt to overthrow Assad by democratically inspired revolt, is key:

 …neo-Stalinist anti-imperialists and their followers refused to treat the Syrian revolution on par with the Egyptian revolution, although both were part of the wave of Arab uprisings. Instead, they assimilated it to the model of ‘regime change’ employed by the US in Iraq! This is a position that reeks of racism: Apparently Syrians are backward savages incapable of wanting to throw off a brutal regime that was looting and oppressing them, and therefore the uprising must have been orchestrated by Obama using ISIS, which he sponsored. This was the story peddled by Assad’s and Putin’s media and repeated by Trump, and, in a watered-down version by the likes of Seumas Milne, who, I recently discovered, was part of a hardcore Stalinist faction in the CPGB which welcomed Soviet tanks in Czechoslovakia. The same media are behind the demonisation of the White Helmets, the rescue workers digging survivors out of the rubble after bombing raids by Syrian and Russian warplanes.

Inconsistent Anti-Imperialism, Selective Solidarity

German’s Stop the War Coalition (StWC) dutifully reflected the Seumas Milne Line.

If that’s not enough to morally disqualify them,  German completely ignores the independent agency of the Kurds, who, without any other help, have called on US aid, to defeat the Islamist genociders of the Islamic State.

A little bit of modesty would lead her, and her comrades, to reflect on the victims of these people, perhaps the Yazidis.

The book  Long Shot: My Life As a Sniper in the Fight Against ISIS (2019) by  Azad Cudi is a heartbreaking, account of resistance to the Jihadist murderers by the Kurdish fighters, from the embattled heroism of the defenders of Kobanî to the present day fight in what is now the  Syrian Democratic Forces SDF.

This lonely fight continues, under the immediate threat of Turkish and now Syrian army attack.

German might have a sliver of credibility if she took account of the autonomous struggle of such heroic people against the Islamist genociders.

Would she even dare..

All we have got to hear the same old line, already churned out so many times in the past it’s easy to know it.

This what German said about the London and Manchester Jihadist murders in 2017.

This climate of racism here in the UK, and elsewhere in Europe, is only helping to create a vicious circle where Islamophobia leads to a growth in extremism and terrorism, which in turn leads to more Islamophobia. It is a circle which can only be broken by a concerted campaign against both war and Islamophobia.

War, Terrorism & Islamophobia: Breaking The Vicious Circle. Lindsey German

In other words, it’s not the fault of the terrorist murderers, but of Islamophobia and Western interventions.

We have to campaign against “war” – including the Kurdish resistance? – and hostility to a religion.

Nothing about the need for building solidarity amongst the peoples of the world, nothing about being against all racism, including that of the Islamist genociders.

The following looks a better way to begin to look at some of these issues,.

In discussing Rohini Hensman’s book Ralph Leonard says,

In her final section, Rohini offers some suggestions as to how to fight back against the scourge of neo-Stalinism and neo-fascism and form an alternative, independent and more consistent democratic and internationalist politics: by pursuing and telling the truth; bringing morality and humanity back into politics; reasserting the value of the global struggle for democracy; placing internationalism center stage and pressuring global institutions like the UN to promote human rights and democracy.

I agree with all of this. My only minor criticism would be that we should not rely on international institutions like the EU and the UN to be agents of social and political change. These institutions, as they currently exist, are not fit for purpose and need to be radically changed, or replaced with alternative institutions born of popular struggles. Nevertheless, I very much agree with Hensman, particularly about the importance of internationalism. In this second age of globalization, capitalism is a well and truly global phenomenon and the economies of nations are more integrated than ever before. This means that any potential progressive anti-capitalist movement would also have to be a global movement, especially since an international working class now truly exists, far more so than in the days of Marx and Engels.

Book Review: “Indefensible” by Rohini Hensman – The Left and “pseudo anti-imperialism”

 

 

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The Christchurch Murderer, the Ideology of Identity and the Great Replacement.

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Brendon Tarrant’s ‘Manifesto’.

The word is still reeling at the Christchurch atrocities.

Solidarity is the first, and best, response.

Yet it is becoming clear that the killer was more than just a “extremist right-wing violent terrorist”.

Tarrant has an ideology.

In the manifesto he states that he was previously a “communist“, an “anarchist“, and a “libertarian“, but then turned to “racist” views and became an “eco-fascist” concerned with global warming. Though he rejected the label of Nazism, The American Conservative comments that his political ideology matches national socialism and that he despised capitalism while idolizing China. It comments he only sees Christianity’s value in uniting Europe. Tarrant also laments the moral breakdown of the West. The manifesto includes references to high-profile right-wing figures and Internet memes and encourages people online who agree with the shooting to spread his message and to create more memes. These elements, along with the live-streamed video—in which its viewers had cheered the attack on—gave the appearance that the attack was influenced by internet trolling. This is further supported by the perpetrator’s reasoning for his choice of weapon; he believed it would violently escalate the American gun control debate and cause civil war in the United States.[52][53][54][55] He supports return of racial segregation in the United States. The manifesto ends with neo-Nazi symbols above two images.

Wikipedia. (More directly from the Manifesto below)

The text talks of “mass immigration” and “higher fertility rates” of immigrants.

The clearly indicates the most important strand in the Manifesto, beginning with the title, is the Great Replacement.

This is the ideology, developed by the French writer, Renaud Camus, that European white people are being “replaced” by others. His best known book is Le Grand Remplacement (2011).

The hysteria this idea has generated can be seen on this site,

The Great Replacement is very simple. You have one people, and in the space of a generation, you have a different people. Renaud Camus

The Great Replacement (French: Le grand remplacement) is a term originally coined by a French writer Renaud Camus who first used it to describe the demographic replacement happening in France due to its mass immigration policies and low birth rates among the native French.

The same term can be applied to many other European peoples both in Europe and abroad – from Germany, to England, to the United States, which all have below replacement birth rates and migration policies that pose an existential threat. Of all the different races of people on this planet, only the European races are facing the possibility of extinction in a relatively near future.

This is highlighted by the French media: La théorie du « grand remplacement », de l’écrivain Renaud Camus aux attentats en Nouvelle-Zélande (le Monde).

Camus claims that the term is an adaption from Brecht, “Would it not be easier In that case for the government To dissolve the people And elect another?” While his main influence is more diffuse, and wide ranging, he has had some political involvement. Camus was part of a micro-party  French political parties often have ‘allies’ which essentially exist to i) create the impression of a ‘broad front’ ii) be a way of getting extra spending through without running over limits) ” SIEL (Souveraineté, identité et libertés, was one, under the wing of the Front National, now Rassemblement Nationalin their broad front, Rassemblement bleu Marine.

SIEL is now, after an obscure row, largely centred on the virulence of some of their declarations, independent and linked to the Identitarian movement, anchored clearly on the extreme right. They *claimed* (dubiously) to be running a European List this year.  This month Camus won a case against somebody who had called him an anti-Semite. The judgement rested on the lack of detail in the charge, and he was awarded only 1000 Euros in damages. (13.3.19 La justice donne raison à Renaud Camus face à Yann Moix).

This hallucinatory picture of a declining Europe is reinforced by Tarrant’s hostility to Muslim people.

He talks of “foreign invaders”, and this (The Manifesto of Brenton Tarrant – a right-wing terrorist on a Crusade)

He is (as in the image above) ‘anti-imperialist’ as well, expressing an admiration for China.

But the heart of the work is hatred, from an angry man, and more hatred, for Immigration to the West.

 

Camus denies any responsibility:

French ‘Great Replacement’ writer denounces ‘appalling’ NZealand attack

As he tweeted today:

Camus denies any connection with the atrocity. France 24.

“I am totally non-violent,” the 72-year-old Camus told AFP, saying the arrested 28-year-old Australian suspect had committed “appalling, criminal, disastrous and idiotic terrorist acts”.

“If he wrote a pamphlet titled ‘The Great Replacement” it’s blatant plagiarism… of a phrase that doesn’t belong to him and he doesn’t understand,” said Camus.

The writer, who is also a gay rights activist, lives in a 14th-century chateau in southwest France.

Yet, he has just drawn attention to the ” crime against humanity” that is immigrant presence and the “genocide” that is the great replacement.

Both the BBC and Channel Four have underlined the link between the ideology of the Manifesto, Camus’ Great Replacement, and Identitarian politics.

The latter, which is movement across Europe, with some US links, stands for white European cultural (and racial) Identity. The French wing, Les Identitaires which puts their ideas forward more clearly than the English language Wikipedia version does, their ideas join together (itnrseciotnallty as it were)

Disgust with materialism, consumerism, and the exploitation of workers by big international capital, hostility to the non-representative character of the French electoral system, and the take over of democracy by oligarchies, hostility to American hegemony and Islamic imperialism, opposition to mass race mixing and the charge of permanent guilt to Europeans, a rejection of Paris run Jacobin centralisation , a refusal to bow to ready-made thinking enforced by intellectual terrorism.

It goes without saying, though apparently not noticed by BBC’s Newsnight, that this movement (mouvance, in the sense of its broad current)  is linked to acts of violence.

 Racisme, violence, salut nazi… Un journaliste a infiltré Génération identitaire et le bar La citadelle à Lille. (3 months ago).

 

Harry’s  Place  comments,

We have watched as politics of “Identity” has taken over our academic institutions, our media, our civic structures and non-governmental organisations, mostly co-opted, colonised or cajoled by the far-Left. This poured fuel on the last burning embers of the far-Right and it now threatens to ignite a conflagration, from corners of Eastern Europe, to the streets of Paris, all the way to the most unlikely place on earth: New Zealand.

When progressive politics stresses above all else the primacy and priority of race, religion, gender, and so on, is it any wonder the far-Right – which has a century or more of practice in this despicable arena rises to the challenge? You can’t have relentless the prodding and sniping at ‘heterosexual white males” without expecting a countervailing extreme to emerge again, especially since the cloaks and mantles of previous far-Right movements are lying on the ground for a new breed of maniac to pick up. Such is the dynamics of reciprocal radicalisation.

The problem is that identitarian politics and the influence of Renaud Camus are more extensive than the list cited.

In The Strange Death of Europe. Immigration, Identity, Islam ( Bloomsbury. 2017) Douglas Murray says that Europe is committing suicide, its “civilisation” is committing suicide. There are two reasons, “the mass movement of peoples into Europe.” And “lost faith in its beliefs, traditions and legitimacy.”(Pages 2 – 3) The continent has decided to become a “u-topia”, a no place.

Douglas, who refers to Camus, says “migration, “we are not after all such great melting pots that anything and anyone can be endlessly poured in with the results always coming out the same.”(Page 310) “We do not want our politicians, through weakness, self-hatred, malice, tiredness or abandonment to change our home into an utterly different place.”(Page 320)

This is Murray’s background:

Associate director of the Henry Jackson Society Former director of the Centre for Social Cohesion, Educated at Benedict’s school Eaton Collage, and Magdalen College Oxford..

Just as writers such as Gilles Kepel have, rightly, traced the links between some forms of political Salafism and Jihadist violence  (Terreur dans l’Hexagone: Genèse du djihad français. 2015, see Le jihadisme, passage à l’acte du salafisme) we are entitled to ask questions about those who have indulged Camus’ tirades. Identitarian and Great Replacement ideology are some of the conditions for the activist turn to the violent far right. The alternative account of jihadist violence, by Olivier Roy, as a “nihilist” spasm by desperate people, (Le Djihad et la Mort, 2016) looks an unfruitful angle from which to gain an insight into the atrocities in Christchurch.

Parkfield Muslim Parents Campaign to End “Promotion of Homosexuality”.

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Stop Promoting Homosexuality, Say Parkfield Parents (Economist). 

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street has spoken out over the Parkfield Community School protests, insisting that ‘intolerance must not win out’.

Taking on Twitter, the mayor called the language used by protesters outside the school over the past week ‘unacceptable’, and stressed the importance of tolerance in the community.

….

Parkfield has insisted that the programme will continue to be taught after the Easter break , despite 350 parents signing a petition against it and several removing their children from classes last week.

The protests have been widely condemned by MPs and councillors from across the city, with Birmingham Yardley MP Jess Phillips saying she was ‘heartbroken’ by a video showing the protests.

Birmingham Live

Image result for birmingham parents lgbt

Police investigate ‘homophobic graffiti’ at Birmingham school amid row over LGBT+ sex education

Police are investigating reports of homophobic graffiti at a school where parents have been protesting against same-sex relationships being taught.

The vandalism at Parkfield Community School in Birmingham was reported to West Midlands Police by a school governor during the February half term holiday.

The force said it was also reviewing video footage circulating on social media to “establish whether any additional offences have taken place”.

Parents have been demonstrating against the school’s No Outsiders programme, which includes teaching about LGBT+ relationships.

In footage posted online, young children appear to be joining in chants of “shame” while adults use the megaphone to voice their opposition.

Responding to the protests, the local Labour Party has got itself into a mess trying to square an impossible circle. Birmingham Labour MP Shabana Mahmood urged schools to take “proper consideration for pupils’ religion and background”.

From James Bloodworth (above).

Birmingham school LGBT lessons protest investigated

Protesters branding school lessons about LGBT rights as “toxic” and “disgusting” have been accused of using “appalling” and “incendiary” language.

It follows footage of continuing rallies at a Birmingham primary school where the lessons have been taught.

A man can be heard telling a crowd outside Parkfield Community School that teaching about social difference is “aggressive indoctrination”.

Police are reviewing the video to see whether any offences are committed.

The footage – in which a vocal and supportive audience is told homosexuality is incompatible with Islam – was taken outside the school.

On Thursday, Birmingham City Council’s cabinet member for social inclusion John Cotton said: “In recent days, we have been appalled to see attempts to divide the people of our city by using insulting and incendiary language targeting the LGBT community.”

While Parkfield is an academy, not a local authority school, Mr Cotton said the council was monitoring the situation.

Neither the school nor the protesting group, which includes parents of pupils, wished to comment.

Brendan O’Neill (Spiked)  backs the parents:

Those Birmingham parents are right

Teaching primary-age schoolkids about sexual matters is weird.

When it comes to moral and religious matters, parents should exercise the greater authority over their children. It is crucial for the sovereignty of the family and the rights of parents that their moral purview is not casually traduced by officials who presume to know better.

Reports indicate that other ‘conservative’ (that is, reactionary) religious groups are following these protests. It is suggested that they may follow suite.

This is strongly reminiscent of similar protests in France against the teaching of equality in schools, claimed to be the “Théorie” du genre ” which includes  LGBT (Lesbiennes, Gays, Bi et Trans ).

During 2014 the Catholic Far-right and Muslim ‘conservatives’ (that is, the Muslim far-right) joined forces (as they had done against Gay marriage) and organised,by parents, boycotts of schools: “Théorie” du genre : quand extrême droite et musulmans conservateurs font alliance)

Here is an article about one of the founder of this movement.

Gender theory and school boycott (Parents. 2018) Bientôt ou déjà parents, on vous accompagne !

.. …Farida Belghoul, writer and filmmaker, was a leading figure of the anti-racist March of the Beurs of 1984. The present movement is part of the vast constellation of very conservative family associations, fundamentalists and / or extreme right. In a press release, Farida Belghoul urged her supporters to contact representatives of the anti-gay marriage Manif our tous, the association Equality and Reconciliation (whose president is the Holocaust denier Alain Soral), the French Spring (far right), Action française. … In the texts available on the official website of the JRE, Farida Belghoul gives the appearance of reason and moderation. But Farida Belghoul develops an approach which draws both on theories of conspiracy (Masonic), millenarianism and “declinism”, and focuses on a grand alliance between Muslims and Catholics against the spirit of the Enlightenment.

The campaign continues (2018, see first image here, which focuses on LGBT).

Written by Andrew Coates

March 9, 2019 at 2:37 pm

George Galloway: My Name is Legion, “I am the ex-Mayor of Sunderland. I am Chris Williamson MP. I am Asa Winstanley. I am Marc Wadsworth. I am Jackie Walker. I am Tony Greenstein. I am Ken Livingstone…..”

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Image may contain: 1 person, text

George Galloway Has Writ a Poem.

Hat-tip Heg.

And he asked him, What is thy name? And he answered, saying, My name is Legion: for we are many.

10 And he besought him much that he would not send them away out of the country.

11 Now there was there nigh unto the mountains a great herd of swine feeding.

12 And all the devils besought him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them.

13 And forthwith Jesus gave them leave. And the unclean spirits went out, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the sea, (they were about two thousand;) and were choked in the sea.

Image result for gadarene swine story Bible

The Gadarene Swine.

Alas, there are many who would jest at Galloway’s Moving Poem.

George Galloway slammed for absolutely ludicrous tweet

Thanks R for the below:

 

We all know who Greenstein and most of the others are:

Résultat de recherche d'images pour "tony greenstein nazi bitch"

But the mystery of the appearance of one of these names is only now cleared up:

Labour suspends Electronic Intifada blogger Asa Winstanley, who called JLM ‘Israeli embassy proxy’

Mr Winstanley, who is prominent on Twitter, was suspended after it emerged he was a member.

 

Written by Andrew Coates

March 8, 2019 at 4:50 pm

From the Anti-Imperialism of Fools to Anti-Semitism?

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Image result for anti semitism the socialism of fools

 

The Far Right, the Left, and Anti-Semitism

A Very Public Sociologist.

Phil was one of the first people on the left to signal out, in 2015,  the The Anti-Imperialism of Fools.

Its main feature was to support anything “against” imperialism, primarily the USA.

a certain intellectual dishonesty about their positions. Stop the War write op-eds that, let’s be generous, white wash the enemies of the US and UK, but do not link it with a clear intellectual framework for making sense of these position-takings. For the uninitiated, it suggests opposition to Britain’s wars is a gateway into apologising for some of the most disgusting regimes and terror groups on the planet. Therefore to understand the politics of Stop the War, one must delve a little into political history.

Yet Stop the War has more or less carried on as if none of this has happened, as if the USA is the only active agent in the world and – implicitly – the designs and manoeuvres of rival states and enemies are benign or, at least, less harmful. This is why Putin never gets as much stick as Obama, why leading members of its steering committee have occasionally associated with sundry undesirables, why the Kurds get no support while IS are clumsily and favourably compared with the International Brigades. It’s why it appears that authoritarians and totalitarians get a free pass while democratic countries are criticised and mobilised against.

Over the weekend he has developed this point, making clear his own opposition to “Israel’s racist despoiling of the Palestinians”and support for “pro-Palestinian politics.”

Phil begins by observing that,

“One thing very few people on the left seem willing to admit is that since 2003 the anti-war movement here has been subject to a process of infiltration by currents of opinion, and sometimes organised groups, behaving like the local representatives of the British far right.”

There is no doubt a lot more to say about  Netanyahu, and Israel.

But this is a post about the British left.

A key strand since 2015, and which this Blog has called, following the French example, “confusionism”, is the way that conspiracy thinking has crept into this “anti-imperialism”.

In 2003-5, this was mainly about opinions. In particular, there was a current of opinion within the movement, which grew stronger the occupation of Iraq went on, to say that 9/11 was an American inside job. That strand of opinion was assisted, inevitably, by the need for people – who were against the war – to find websites which would give an honest, objective account of what was actually happening in Iraq. This meant disassociating from mainstream media, going to anti-war news sites. In the US a large number of these sites were hosted by the so-called “libertarian” right and saw no reason against promoting conspiracy theories, 9/11 Truth accounts, etc. Movements such as Stop the War did try to keep these sort of opinions out – banning them from our platforms, etc. But this was a matter of silent gatekeeping – the left didn’t like to admit we had a problem in a movement we led – we would never say openly that we were worried about X or Y Stop the War group. The only time when the left in Stop the War came out publicly against the right was George Monbiot who in two Guardian pieces tore into the 9/11 Truth movement. In retrospect, that was a sign of the sorts of difficulties the left has been having in 2018-19: not least in the very many people who saw themselves on the left but posted in the Guardian comment threads criticising Monbiot.

That’s to say nothing of those in recent days ranting about the ‘Zionist’ media attacking Corbyn….

Or this, from conspi Rachel Swindon:

Phil then focuses on anti-Semitism.

Like the “conventional” far right, today’s anti-war anti-semites have grown through a process of individual activists building up a social media infrastructure which at a certain point they have monetised on YouTube, Patreon, etc, enabling previously isolated individuals to become full-time organisers on behalf of a certain political argument.

Probably most of my friends haven’t heard of them but that doesn’t meant they haven’t been able to achieve an influence much larger than they deserve.

A typical individual is Vanessa Beeley who was at one stage associated with an anti-war group in Frome, but has built up a Twitter following of 40,000 people which she uses to applaud dictators everywhere – Assad, Putin. And to say that the people she dislikes are in the pay of the Jews.

This, and Beeley to the fore, has been the subject of many posts here and on other critical left Blogs.

Williamson, who has praised Beeley, is a good example of indulgence towards this conspi thinking

The point about Williamson is that over the last 12 months he has liked the social media accounts of each of the four people/groups I’ve just mentioned, used his own social media to boost their profile, and treated them like the allies in a shared political project which he undoubtedly regards them to be. In so far as this part of the far right has a “shield” in official politics, he provides it.

Every time someone points out to Williamson that he is promoting anti-semites he goes through the same cycle of denial, insisting that his allies are good socialists being unfairly targeted for their views on Israel, belated admission, apology, promises not to do it again.

Perhaps some trying to justifying Williamson will disagree, violently, but to this writer it’s a fair summing up.

As indeed Comrade Dave Osler does in the Independent.

Once house room is granted to such relentlessly self-preening charlatans as Vanessa Beeley, Gilad Atzmon and David Icke, it’s a perilously short step to political judgments centred on the shoddy output of propaganda-driven state broadcasters, half-arsed alt-left websites and the crankier fringes of the Trot diaspora.

Before you ask, this isn’t a snipe from the right. I’m a long-standing lefty who has proudly donated to Jeremy Corbyn’s electoral efforts and knocked on doors for John McDonnell and Diane Abbott for many years.

Nor do I wish to exaggerate the extent of the problem. Thankfully this nonsense remains predominantly the province of a few hundred headbangers on social media, although even that minimal degree of traction feeds the Daily Mail with “vile Labour Twitter troll” stories as if by conveyor belt.

But branding the White Helmets Israeli stooges, or postulating a Rothschild Zionist grip on global central banking, is just the type of dimwitted aperçu that ensured antisemitism renewed circulation among radical young people during the anti-globalisation and Occupy movements, and sometimes emerge in the real world.

As Trotsky himself used to note, with a scratch comes the danger of gangrene. In a climate where 2.6 million Britons think the Holocaust was a myth, no potential Labour standard-bearer should get away with posting offensively photoshopped pictures of the gates of Auschwitz, on any pretext whatsoever.

Tom Watson is right to brand incidents like that a cause for deep shame. So it’s pleasing that Labour left figures such as Jon Lansman are on the case, as demonstrated by the excellent Rothschild Conspiracy Exposed video released by Momentum last week.

Meanwhile, matters are compounded in some quarters by wilful refusal to engage with current affairs, especially in other countries, which comes as an inevitable corollary of making the very words “mainstream media” a dread insult.

Put simply, the Beeb, The Economist and Financial Times have serious sources in Venezuela and Syria; one-man blogs written from bedrooms reeking of hamster urine do not.

Less of The Canary and more Marx: How Labour should deal with the conspiracism in its midst.

Confusion can naturally spread further as this indicates.

This is where ‘taking sides’ can lead.

But anti-Semitism seems to be at its heart.

Note this from the Gilets Jaunes protests this weekend.

The Left’s long history of antisemitism

The hard-Left’s division of the world into good and bad makes it blind to its own racism.

With ready-made tropes about Jewish world domination never more than a few clicks away online, populist ‘anti-elitism’ rhetoric – of either the Left or Right – easily lends itself to antisemitism. Portray capitalism as a sinister cabal of individuals controlling the economy, and antisemites invoke long-standing tropes about Jews controlling the banks.

As a recent paper on European antisemitism put it, prejudice against Jews is “residual yet perpetual”. A 2009 survey found that 31% of Europeans blamed Jews for the global economic crisis.

This is a good starting point, but the rest of the piece is not so easy to digest.

It is true that groupuscules who run bodies such as Labour Against the Witch-hunt have encouraged a climate in which anti-Semitism  and anti-Zionism (itself an ambiguous term) have sometimes run together.

But there is much to contest in the claim that there is some kind of “long history” to left anti-Semitism. We can begin from the fact that our glorious dead, Jean Jaurès onwards, fought tooth and nail against anti-semitism at a time when a parallel populist confusionism reigned in the minds of some on the left.

Nor can Corbyn be blamed for something with the deeper roots that Phil, and others (this Blog for example), have traced.

It was the Marxist, August Bebel who popularised the expression,  Anti-Semitism is the socialism of fools,  (Der Antisemitismus ist der Sozialismus der dummen Kerle”.

Today there are many on the British ‘hard’ left who are fighting anti-Semitism tooth and nail, and stand with comrade Jon Lansman on the issue.

No photo description available.

 

 

On the French left this spirit is very far from dead:

Le non-sujet de l’antisémitisme à gauche – Pour une critique radicale de l’antisémitisme.

BRENNI CamillaKRICKEBERG MemphisNICOLAS-TEBOUL LéaZOUBIR Zacharias

On the Anti-Semitism of Certain Gilets Jaunes against Alain Finkielkraut.

with 3 comments

Unity Against Anti-Semitism.

Yellow-vest protests: Macron condemns anti-Semitic abuse

BBC.

French President Emmanuel Macron has condemned anti-Semitic abuse directed at a prominent intellectual by a group of “yellow vest” protesters in Paris.

Police stepped in to protect the philosopher Alain Finkielkraut after he was bombarded with insults and anti-Jewish taunts in the French capital.

President Macron said it was an “absolute negation” of what made France great and would not be tolerated.

Tens of thousands took part in anti-government protests on Saturday.

Prosecutors have now opened an investigation into the incident, and France’s interior minister said on Sunday that a suspect alleged to be the “main perpetrator” had been identified by the authorities.

It is significant that the French Communist Party was one of the first to react:

Ian Brossat, chief French Communist Party candidate for the European Parliament, said “We can hate Finkielkraut’s ideas”, but “nothing can justify attacking him as a Jew”.

The Local.

The anti-Semitic insults hurled at Alain Finkielkraut by certain Gilets Jaunes in Paris on Saturday continue to make waves in France.

This was on Europe 1 this morning.

Bernard-Henri Lévy : “On est dans un moment qui me fait penser à l’époque de l’affaire Dreyfus”

BHL’s scattergun polemics will leave many people cold.

But in some respects he is completely to the point.

In le Monde Diplomatique this month Serge Halimi & Pierre Rimbert defend the Gilet Jaunes as a manifestation of class war.

They cite an episode from the history of French socialism. In the debate, known widely as the “Two methods” held in the Hippodrome of Lille in 1900, Jules Guesde defended the sectarian ‘class against class’ against those socialists who had defended Dreyfus and no backed a government to ‘defend the republic’ against the far-right ‘reactionary’ threat

In Lille in 1900, the socialist leader Jules Guesde had already seen through this political game to which the capitalist class owed its longevity in power: ‘It is divided into progressive bourgeoisie and republican bourgeoisie, clerical bourgeoisie and free-thinking bourgeoisie, in such a way that a defeated faction can always be replaced in power by another faction from the same class, which is also [our] enemy. It’s a ship with watertight partitions which can take in water on one side without being any less unsinkable.’ But sometimes the sea gets rough and the vessel’s stability is threatened. In such a situation, squabbles need to be set aside to present a united front and keep it afloat.

The authors do not cite Guesde’s opponent, Jean Jaurès.

The exchange hinged on the participation of a socialist, Millerand, in the bourgeois (republican) government of René Waldeck-Rousseau. For  Jaurès defending Millerand was a matter of being against Nationalism and Reaction (“contre le nationalisme, contre la réaction”).

The disagreement,as mentioned, went back to Dreyfus.

Guesde refused to back the Jewish victim of anti-semitism on the grounds that the affair was “un conflit interne à la bourgeoisie “(an internal squabble within the bourgeoisie).

Comrade Jaurès replied to these arguments by asserting that the human rights at stake with the injustice against Dreyfus were a matter for socialists.

There are two parts to capitalist and bourgeois legality: There are a whole mass of laws aimed at protecting the fundamental iniquity of our society, and there are laws that consecrate the privileges of capitalist property, the exploitation of the wage earner by the owner. We want to smash these laws, and even by revolution if necessary abolish capitalist legality in order to bring forth a new order. But alongside these laws of privilege and rapine, made by a class and for it, there are others that sum up the pitiful progress of humanity, the modest guarantees that it has little by little conquered through a centuries-long effort and a long series of revolutions.

And among these laws the one that doesn’t allow the condemnation of a man, whoever he might be, without discussion with him is perhaps the most essential. Contrary to the nationalists who want to keep of bourgeois legality all that protects capital and turn over to generals all that protects man, we revolutionary socialists want, within today’s legality, to abolish the capitalist portion and save the human portion. We defend legal guarantees against the braided judges who smash them, just as, if the need arises, we will defend republican legality against generals in a coup d’etat.

Jean Jaurès 1898. The Dreyfus Affair

That  tradition, which sees the fight against anti-Semitism as part of the wider struggle for human rights, and socialism, is quiet but is now becoming more and more alive.

Yves Colman, one of many on the radical French left,  stands against this latest manifestation of anti-Semitism,

Quand des Gilets jaunes lancent des insultes antisémites et xénophobes contre Alain Finkielkraut ils ne font que suivre les traces de leurs prédécesseurs de Nuits debout

The fact that Finkielkraut is reactionary, hostile to Muslim immigration, is indeed an excellent reason to fight it politically. The fact that he does not understand the difference between Islam and Islamism, or between political Islam and jihadist terrorism, the fact that he defends Renaud Camus, the theoretician of the “great replacement”, does not make him particularly attractive.

But there is a wide margin between this and making antisemitic and xenophobic remarks about him when you come across him in the street. This is the step  that yellow vests made today.

Yves continues, comparing this incident to the outpouring of hatred that occurred when Finkielkraut made an equally provocative visit to the Nuit Debout movement’s spectacle at the Place de la Bastille in 2016.

The extreme left, denouncing Finkielkraut’s slightest gesture and systematically associating him with Zionism, could only have facilitated the creation of the current anti-Semitic climate. From this climate left and extreme left who claim to be “anti-Zionists” are partly responsible.

Anti-Semitism and anti-Muslim racism go hand in hand. And we can not pretend to fight the second without fighting the first. Otherwise we play the game of the extreme right

 

Here

Written by Andrew Coates

February 18, 2019 at 1:34 pm

The Legacy of Lyndon LaRouche (1922 – 2019???).

with 2 comments

LaRouche really did not like us lot either.

The ultimate American politician and conspiracist is dead—at least according to Twitter. It’s hard to know where to begin, really. This video summarizes LaRouche’s thoughts on Walter Mondale and is as good a place as any to start. The waters run deep and wide; I cannot but suspect Prince Philip is pleased to outlive him.

Here.

This, well-established rumour, was widely tweeted.

Many of the views for which LaRouche is famous are, these days, mainstream conspi stiff, “September 11th was an “inside job”, that Global Warming is a myth, “The “Greenhouse effect” hoax: a world federalist plot” and, inevitably, George Soros, whom he identified as a puppet master back in 2008

Your Enemy George Soros.

This Report documents the takeover of the democratic party by George Soros. A Nazi sympathizer who continues in the destruction of peoples and nations around the world.

LaRouche’s loathing for ‘Zionists’ nearly equalled some of the European ‘anti-Zionists’ of today, ” the Zionist Lobby is “the most visible of the internal enemies of the United States–and of the human race–at this specific moment. Every policy it is currently pushing is pure evil.” In his take on this (back in the 1970s) he said, “calls for a national “Task Force” to “root out the cancer in the American body politic that is the so-called Zionist Lobby….Literally thousands of operatives for the Zionist Lobby have penetrated the halls of Congress, the State and Defense Departments, the CIA, and American business and labor organizations….Their loyalties lie not with the United States but with the Zionist-British organism….[A]nyone professing Zionist loyalties is by definition incapable of being loyal to the interests of the United States. He is, by definition, a national security risk. The Zionist octopus must be eliminated.” LAROUCHE & CO.: A CHORUS OF HATE

The writer of this Blog first learnt of the existence of LaRouche at the end of the 60s when I was about 15 years old.

The National Caucus of Labor Committees put its material in the old Collete’s ‘Bomb Shop’ in Tottenham Court Road.

It was hallucinatory.

Yet we learn that the group had its origins in the US New Left.

The NCLC had it origins in the 1968 convention of the Students for a Democratic Society. It comprised people who had been expelled from the Maoist Progressive Labor Party, an SDS faction, and students from Columbia University in New York City. It called itself the “SDS Labor Committee” or the “National Caucus of SDS Labor Committees”.[5][6] Led by LaRouche, it included “New Left lieutenants” Ed Spannaus, Nancy Spannaus, and Tony Papert, as well as Paul Milkman, Paul Gallagher, Leif Johnson, Tony Chaitkin, and Steve Fraser.[7][8] According to Dennis King, Papert and Fraser had been targets of the FBI’s COINTELPRO operatives.[9] The Labor Committee was known for promoting a “socialist re-industrialization” of the economy, combined with confiscatory taxes on what it saw as wasteful and parasitic investment. It was expelled from SDS for taking the side of the teachers’ union in the Ocean Hill-Brownsville strike.[5] It was originally a New Left organization influenced by Trotskyist ideas[10] as well as those of other Marxists such as Rosa Luxemburg, but opposed other New Left organizations which LaRouche said were dominated by the Ford FoundationInstitute for Policy Studies and Herbert Marcuse.

Wikipedia.

LaRouche’s background is no less intelligible, at least to this Blog,

In 1964 he began an association with an SWP faction called the Revolutionary Tendency, a faction which was later expelled from the SWP, and came under the influence of British Trotskyist leader Gerry Healy.[23]

For six months, LaRouche worked with American Healyite leader Tim Wohlforth, who later wrote that LaRouche had a “gargantuan ego”, and “a marvelous ability to place any world happening in a larger context, which seemed to give the event additional meaning, but his thinking was schematic, lacking factual detail and depth.” Leaving Wohlforth’s group, LaRouche briefly joined the rival Spartacist League before announcing his intention to build a new “Fifth International”.[21]

In 1967 LaRouche began teaching classes on Marx’s dialectical materialism at New York City’s Free School,[24] and attracted a group of students from Columbia University and the City College of New York, recommending that they read Das Kapital, as well as Hegel, Kant, and Leibniz. During the 1968 Columbia University protests, he organized his supporters under the name National Caucus of Labor Committees (NCLC).[24] The aim of the NCLC was to win control of the Students for a Democratic Society branch—the university’s main activist group—and build a political alliance between students, local residents, organized labor, and the Columbia faculty.[25][26][27][28] By 1973 the NCLC had over 600 members in 25 cities—including West Berlin and Stockholm—and produced what Dennis King called the most literate of the far-left papers, New Solidarity.[29][30] The NCLC’s internal activities became highly regimented over the next few years. Members gave up their jobs and devoted themselves to the group and its leader, believing it would soon take control of America’s trade unions and overthrow the government.

Wikipedia.

This is the point where it all goes a lot more haywire.

It is hard to get a hold on it all.

Perhaps this may help.

There are many people in the US referred to as ‘left-wing’. Honourable people who do a lot of good. But in Europe their politics are centre-left, liberal, ‘progressive’.

The Marxist, or even radical, American left, has little practical influence on politics. Bernie Sanders, who would be on the centre mainstream of the UK Labour Party, never had the slightest chance of becoming President. The world was solemnly enjoined to take note when a couple of socialist councillors and  then a couple of mildly radical socialist inclined individuals (in all cases with something like the politics of the respectable centre of the UK Labour Party) got elected to Congress.

This means, some who know the US scene better than this Blog (not difficult)  say, that it is  made up of often frustrated and isolated individuals. It is claimed that they either live ‘dual lives’ (revolutionaries in their own minds, making daily compromises to the rest of the world), or keep the flame in enclaves (academic or cultural) shut off from the rest of the world, in academia or imaginary “Marxism lists”. However personally successful people may be in these conditions, however amiable and open-minded they are,  their politics are likely to be pretty adrift. This would naturally attract its share of odd-bods, as all unorthodox politics do.

But LaRouche was special.

Very special. 

Extract from the history of the group and actions which first brought him to wider attention

Operation Mop Up

LaRouche’s writings in the late 1960s displayed an intense curiosity about the history and methods of European fascism. His research, so his followers thought, was aimed at learning how to prevent fascism. But his analysis differed in subtle ways from that of other leftists. One of the first observers to spot something amiss was his old rival Tim Wohlforth. In a 1968 article, Wohlforth noted LaRouche’s “preposterous theory” that the Nazi’s murder of six million Jews had been motivated solely by economics. “It seems,” wrote Wohlforth, “that when [the Nazis] worked the Jews to a point where there was no labor power left in them, they simply sent them to the gas chambers to save the cost of upkeep for unproductive slaves.” Wohlforth saw LaRouche’s theory as just a one-sided analysis of Nazi motives. He didn’t suspect that LaRouche one day would develop his own brand of fascism.

In 1971, LaRouche published a major article on the prospects for fascist base building in America, Only with a mass base, he observed, could a “storm trooper” organization have “saleable qualities” that might attract support from “leading governmental and financial interests.” He predicted that such a movement would emerge soon on the basis of a “populist” ideology and diverse appeals to rival ethnic groups. This movement would begin to furnish the capitalists with gangs to “break strikes and break up socialist and union meetings.” Although at first it might include fascist-minded Jews, it would sooner or later turn on the Jewish community. The Jews, LaRouche observed, were “a most visible and thus ‘ripe’ ” candidate for the role of scapegoat.

LaRouche also predicted that a new type of left-wing group, defined as “left-protofascist,” would take part in the street violence on the side of overtly right-wing ethnic fascists. In subsequent articles he examined how the alleged controllers of fascism, the American capitalist class, might use advanced brainwashing techniques to transform leftist college students into precisely this type of left-fascist “zombie.” He meanwhile began to teach his own leftist followers to regard themselves as “Prometheans,” an elite far above the rest of humanity,

LaRouche’s implication was clear: The NCLC must learn from fascism and adopt some of fascism’s tactics. But his followers still regarded themselves as good Marxists (in spite of their elitist pretensions) and retained a visceral hatred of fascism. If LaRouche wanted to steer them to the right, he would have to turn the NCLC into a controlled environment for ideological reeducation—a political cult.

The NCLC’s transformation occurred in three overlapping stages during 1973-74. First, LaRouche ordered his followers into the streets for a campaign of savage attacks on rival leftist groups called Operation Mop Up. This forced them to either deepen their commitment or get out. It also isolated them irrevocably from the rest of the left.

Second, LaRouche staged “ego-stripping” sessions at NCLC meetings, instilling in his followers a sense of shame over any ideological wavering or lack of courage they might have displayed during Mop Up.

Finally, he whipped up an atmosphere of hysteria inside the NCLC based on allegations of an assassination plot aimed against himself. The acceptance of these bizarre allegations severed most of the remaining links between NCLC members and everyday reality.

Operation Mop Up was preceded by months of squabbling between the NCLC and the Communist Party USA. NCLC members had frequently disrupted CP meetings with long harangues from the floor. The CP began tossing them out and published articles alleging that they were government agents. Matters escalated in early 1973 when the NCLC announced a conference in Philadelphia to build a national organization for welfare recipients and the unemployed. CP members and other local activists started a campaign to discredit the conference, calling its NCLC organizers racists as well as agents. The NCLC leadership was furious. A New Solidarity front-page editorial, entitled “Deadly Crisis for CPUSA,” warned the CP that if it didn’t back off it would face an all-out counterattack. The CP failed to take the threat seriously.

On the conference’s opening day the anti-NCLC coalition sent a sound truck through the black community and staged a picket line with signs comparing the NCLC to the Ku Klux Klan. This failed to stop the event, which was attended by several hundred white middle-class activists and a handful of welfare mothers. The harassment did, however, give LaRouche the pretext he needed. He called an emergency meeting of the East Coast NCLC. “From here on in,” he declared, “the CP cannot hold a meeting on the East Coast . . . We’ll mop them up in two months.” The NCLC, he promised, would seize “hegemony” on the left—i.e., replace the CP as the dominant organization.

Many NCLC members were shocked and frightened by LaRouche’s announcement, but he anticipated their reluctance: “I know you better than you know yourselves, and for the most part you’re full of crap,” he said. “This isn’t a debating society anymore.”

For further information see  LYNDON LAROUCHE AND THE NEW AMERICAN FASCISM

There’s plenty more to say about his career, but this is a gem:

Britain, The Empire of Evil, Pushes Genocide and World War

2015.

As Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip arrived Wednesday in Germany for a three-day visit, the truly Satanic nature of the British Empire was on full display. Prince Philip’s top aide, Martin Palmer, is the principal organizer of a French government-sponsored Paris conference in July, peddling the same genocidal program of “Earth stewardship” that would-be mass murderer John Schellnhuber inserted into the recent Papal Encyclical on climate change. The Paris conference is part of the propaganda assault, leading to the next ‘Copenhagen’ conference at the end of the year, also in Paris. The Worldwatch Institute, founded by Lester Brown, has just issued a report, demanding an end to all subsidies for fossil-fuel and nuclear power, as part of the drive for a total conversion to renewables like solar and wind power.

Any such reversal of the core principle of increased energy- flux density means mass genocide, on the scale that Prince Philip and Schellnhuber have been advocating for decades. Leading Italian economist Nino Galloni has penned an excellent attack on the recent Papal Encyclical, precisely from the standpoint of the concept of “energy-flux density” developed by Lyndon LaRouche.

The question that must be posed to all sane citizens is: Are you for the British Empire’s genocide, or are you for the human race? Are you with Zeus or Prometheus?

This is no abstract question. With the entire European financial system just days away from potential complete meltdown, around the showdown with Greece, and with a British-led NATO explicitly provoking thermonuclear confrontation with both Russia and China, the very survival of mankind is on the line.

There is no question where President Obama stands. He is a British agent, fully committed to the genocidal agenda of Prince Philip, Martin Palmer, John Schellnhuber, and the rest. Yesterday, the internationally renowned Doctors Without Borders issued a highly unusual, scathing attack on Obama, for his Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade swindle, which, the release details, will shut off affordable medicine to at least a half billion people, under the secret clauses of the treaty, written in league with the major pharmaceutical companies. This is mass murder, plain and simple, and this is Obama.

The greatest danger to human survival is the British Empire’s plan for mass genocide, as expressed by the Queen’s agent Schellnhuber. This is a full-blown commitment by the British Royal Family to reduce the world population to under one billion people. Any other matters are distractions and intentionally engineered distractions to prevent any effective counter to the genocide plans.

The British Empire is a Satanic force, and is the continuation of the European Empire system that has been at war with mankind, ever since the launching of the 15th-Century Renaissance by Cardinal Nicholas of Cusa. The Empire’s response to Cusa and the Renaissance was the launching of 150 years of uninterrupted religious war on the European continent.

The latest expression of the British Monarchy’s commitment to that same mass extinction is the Schellnhuber operation run against the Pope. It is around this issue that the future of mankind will be decided in the immediate period ahead.

 

Written by Andrew Coates

February 13, 2019 at 6:11 pm