[Marxism] Fwd: The Israeli School of Misinterpretation

Ron Cohen rony at cohen-waisel.co.uk
Mon Dec 6 05:25:00 MST 2010


    	
            	
	  

	No Copyright                           
                    Excuse double posting 

	From the desk of Reuven Kaminer             December 6,
2010 

	  

	The Israeli School of Misinterpretation 

	  

	It is clear enough that the WikiLeak affair will play out
differently from country to country. The establishment here is quite
pleased that there are no major revelations to embarrass the
government – so far. The fact that Bibi Netanyahu, the leader of
the “loyal opposition” bad mouthed his own government when
visiting  Washington was well known.  No one thought otherwise.
Still, many of the specific reactions by our widely recognized
“experts” are worth a look. Their ranting and raving over the
WikiLeak project are barren of any insight, but they do tell us much
about their own political mentality.  

	  

	Two very sour apples stand out: Professor Shlomo Avineri, who has
abandoned the halls of academia for the pages of Ha’aretz, and one
of Ha’aretz’s prime, well-connected court scribblers, Ari Shavit.
(All quotes from Shavit and Avineri are from the English edition of
Haaretz, December 3, 2010).  Shavit has a field day maligning
Assuage and WikiLeak. This ‘gentleman’ of the press fumes with
hatred and violence.  He slanders WikiLeak hysterically and incites
to violence against Assange, the “dangerous criminal”, “the
cyberterrorist”, the “delusory anarchist”, “the uninhibited
megalomaniac”. But after presenting his anti-WikiLeak credentials,
Shavit decides that Assange has unwittingly performed a service for
him. It seems that for all his “misanthropy”, Julian Assange has
“shattered the accepted dogma… that the main problem in the
Middle East is the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the occupation, the
settlements.”     
 Now this accepted dogma did reign supreme precisely among the local
“analysts” who presented this version of things so as convince
the public that _all _the Arabs want to destroy Israel, the only
democratic state in the area, and that the main obstacle to peace is
arbitrary Arab intransigence. Now on the basis of WikiLeak info, the
Israeli establishment is intensively promoting a brand new updated,
post WikiLeak line. For its own nefarious strategic political aims,
the Israeli establishment wants to impose its own
“interpretation” of the WikiLink revelations concerning Arab
presence in the anti-Iranian coalition. The new line goes like this: 


	  

	All the blather about the centrality of the Israeli-Arab conflict
and the urgent need to solve the Israeli-Palestinian issue is without
any base. On the level of propaganda and empty rhetoric, the
“moderates” still talk about the suffering in Palestine, but they
want and need Israel to protect their feeble, rotting regimes.  

	Even Abu Mazen and his weak Palestinian Authority know full well
that they cannot survive Iranian ascendency.  This is the real
reason that they have pinned their fate to full scale military and
strategic cooperation and integration with the United States and its
allies in the Middle East. Thus, say our Israeli friends, all the
story about the urgency and the centrality of the Israeli-Palestinian
conflict is pure twaddle and nonsense.  
 Now this twaddle and nonsense was precisely the way that Shavit and
his buddies commented on events over the years. In fact they are the
ones who built up the scenario in which about Israel, alone and
isolated in the region, faced a united front of single minded Arab
regimes. Now they have jumped on the emergence of a new stark game
changing revelation. This so-called ‘”discovery” merely serves
to verify the previous narrow minded short sightedness of the
conformist Israeli and pro-Israeli media. It is Shavit and other
court scribes who wanted the world to see the area in terms of the
Israeli-Palestinian conflict, even though they could have and should
have known better.  

	  

	On the left, it has been clear almost from the beginning of the
conflict that developments in the Israeli-Arab conflict are the
results of deeper and wider causes. These can be summarized in the
following axiomatic terms.  The mainspring of events in the region
is the ongoing drive of the United States, acting in its imperial
interests, to maintain control of the regions oil reserves and
refineries and to maintain for this purpose a local configuration of
“friendly” countries and forces which will defend US interests.
The history of the Middle East is replete with instances where
Israeli arms and/or military potential were employed for the
overthrow of progressive Arab regimes or for the survival of
reactionary Arab regimes, faced with popular uprisings.    

	  

	The Real Contradictions  

	  

	And relating to more current developments, I do not know of any
serious left wing commentator, here and abroad, who has not noted the
fact that the so called “moderate” Arab countries have become an
integral link in the US-Israeli preparations for war against Iran.
Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan are all manifestly corrupt and
unpopular regimes.  The existence of an alternative based on the
political and economic support of Iran, Turkey, Syria and Lebanon
(and a host of political groups and forces) is an extreme and
immediate danger to these unpopular regimes.  

	  

	Even before WikiLeak leaked the truth about the real line up in the
Middle East, Israel and its powerful friends in DC have blocked
whatever remained of Obama’s intentions to try the ‘Palestine
before Iran gambit. Thus, Washington’s slim hope of gaining
prestige and using it against Iranian interests through progress in
ending the Israeli-Palestinian stand off appears to have been
seriously damaged.  The Israeli establishment is using the WikiLeak
details and general atmosphere to explain to all the softer hearted
pro-Palestinians the hard facts. Palestine and the Palestinians are
of secondary interest to the “Arabs.”  Israel and the
“Arabs” want to take out Iran.   

	  

	Bibi’s racist coalition and the fundamentalist Saudi regime are
harnessed to the US war machine and hum the same chorus: on to
Teheran. The goal is simple – regime change in Iran. Simply
 taking out a few nuclear installations, which can be rebuilt in a
matter of months, is clearly insufficient.  Iran must be either
destroyed or occupied. This is the common and urgent message of Bibi
and Abdullah, the Saudi king. 

	  

	Obama Downgraded - Netanyahu Elevated 

	  

	The second bit of buzz around this place is that Obama is weak and
getting weaker all the time. Whether or not there is any logic in
blaming Obama for WikiLeak is irrelevant.  It happened on his watch.
In truth there are massive indications that the United States hegemony
is crumbling and that the brains that advise the US President do not
have the foggiest idea about how to reverse the trend. WikiLeak is
just another unpleasant affair. And according to the Israeli school
of flakey interpretations, if Obama is getting weaker, then Bibi is
growing stronger. If not so long ago, DC was acting as if it was
trying to convince Israel to stop construction in the territories –
it is clear now – post WikiLeak, that nobody really cares about the
Palestinian issue. Hillary does not need to waste her energy on
finishing the letter about what she and Bibi did or did not agree on
in their famous seven hour meeting. Bibi could not care less.  The
Israelis are convinced that WikiLeak has defanged US Middle East
diplomacy on Israel-Palestine, leaving DC with only one real option-
the military one against Iran. 

	  

	Israeli Euphoria and the Stubborn Facts 

	  

	It was indeed the routine practice of Israeli politicos to present
the Middle East as a battleground between Arabs and Jews for favors
from Washington. The truth is that the Arab Israeli conflict was and
remains a subsidiary issue in the region. We repeat that the main
issues were and remain the control of Middle East oil, its production
and distribution and the political and strategic configuration
designed to ensure that control. Coordinated activity between Israel
and the Arab “moderates” against regional indigenous forces
challenging that control is an old, well known story. The punsters
believe it is to their advantage at this point to use WikiLeak to
expose the seamy side of the Israeli and Arab connivance so as to
absolve the US of any need to exert pressure on Israel if, indeed, it
had contemplated anything so radical.     

	  

	But let us get things straight. If Bibi feels elevated by Obama’s
inadequacy, he is like that passenger going up the elevator in a ship
that has begun its final stages of listing to its side. He and his
patron are thinking about starting a war that is an act of
desperation. They are contemplating a throw of the dice which means
gambling with the fate of perhaps millions of men, women and
children.  The fact that the Jewish state is blindly leading the
region into a new holocaust, under US auspices, is new evidence of
the horrific corruption of humanity that can result from a regime,
Jewish in name, but bereft of any roots in a philosophy of justice, a
regime built around chauvinism, racism and occupation.  

	  

	Who is Behind WikiLeak? 

	  

	Our Israeli ideologues, whether a distinguished professor or a noted
journalist, express the insecurity of a class, which has a deep
distaste and suspicion of anything that challenges the need for
control and order. The ideologues explain that we simply cannot have
unauthorized people running around and speaking the truth. In
particular, Prof. Avineri is angry about US inability to keep its
secrets, the inadequate level of intelligence gathering, sloppy
reporting and the clogging of future contacts. But this is nothing
compared with Avineri’s disgust with Obama’s inability to
understand the region where “we are looking at a political culture
a bit different from the kind taken for granted by us and the Western
democracies.  We desire peace with our neighbors, but this isn’t a
world into which we need or want to integrate into in terms of
morality and values. It isn’t pleasant to say this, but it should
be acknowledged.” Avineri dislikes two-facedness, but shows his
racist mindset precisely in a week when the entire world is learning,
via WikiLeak that among the all the powers that be two-facedness is
the rule and not the exception.    

	  

	Avineri is worried because he doesn’t know Assange’s political
agenda, though he is certain that something smells bad. He warns us
that, ”This is a person with clear aims – although no one has
figured out exactly what they are.” (!!)  Professor Avineri asks,
”Are we certain there isn’t a security service behind him and his
efforts? This should be on the public agenda in the next few weeks.”
Avineri must know that there are not too many possibilities.  Al
Quaeda, with a laptop in the cave? The North Koreans battling over
the leadership succession.  The “inscrutable Chinese”? Really!! 

	  

	If Prof. Avineri had made a minimal effort to read about Julian
Assange’s work and his philosophy, he might be surprised by the
fact that Assange’s main political inspiration and references are
standard liberal fare. Assange quotes as his mentors people like Lech
Walenska and Solzhenitsin. He is quite open regarding his motives. All
the following quotes are from an address by Julian Assange at the
Stockholm Freedom Forum in May 2010. 
	“[We must] understand that the alliance which once existed between
liberals and libertarians and the military-industrial complex in
opposing Soviet abuses in the Cold War - is gone. Where once upon a
time,  people who stood up for enlightenment values domestically, in
Western countries, who stood up for human rights and freedom of the
press domestically in Western countries, liberals, libertarians and
the press itself were in a tacit alliance with warmongers. They were
in a tacit alliance with those people who opposed the Soviet Union
merely for geopolitical reasons. And that alliance was to pick up a
moral stick and to beat the Soviet Union for its abuses, its terrible
abuses, censorship  The government and military joined this alliance
in recognition of the geopolitical value of the alliance as a moral
stick with which to beat the Soviet Union for its terrible abuses in
its censorship. As of 1990-91 that artificial alliance, that
temporary alliance had dissipated, with reversion to a different
standard, where the natural interests of authority, the natural
interests of the intelligence agencies and the natural interests of
the military is in stifling press reportage of abuse, and it has been
reasserted in Western countries.
 In this broader framework of what we do, it's to try and build a
 historical, intellectual record of how our civilization actually
works
 in practice, now, from the inside, everywhere, in every country
around the world, from the inside.
 Because all of our decisions, individual decisions, our political
 decisions are based on what we know, humanity is nothing but what we
know and what we have. And what we have can be replaced and degrades
quickly. And what we know is everything and it is our limit of what
we can be. So before we can embark on any particular political
stratagem we first have to know where we are. If we don't know
where we are, it's impossible to know where we're going.
Likewise, it's impossible to correct abuses unless we know that
they're going on.
 So I ask you to think about the words of Macchiavelli, think about
them in their negative, when he said, "Thus it happened in matters of
state when knowing afar off which is only given a prudent man to do
the evils that are brewing, they are easily cured; but when for want
of such knowledge they're allowed to grow until everyone can
recognize them, there is no longer any remedy to be found."
 For secret planning is secret usually for a reason. This is because
if it's abusive it is opposed. So it's our task to find
secret abuses planned and expose them where they can be exposed
before they are implemented: for if they are exposed by their
implementation by people suffering from that abuse, then the abuse
has already occurred and it is too late. He who controls today`s
Internet servers, controls the intellectual record of mankind.”  

	_ _ 

	Our good professor once understood something about contradictions
and the limits of power, but he has reduced himself to the role of
apologist for the Israeli state. Instead of calm discussion and
reasoned disagreement, he joins the pack of jackals baying for the
blood of an honest liberal. 

	  

	Thus, the significance of the information culled from WikiLeak is
interpreted by Israel’s ideological cadre so as to further the
current strategic goals of the regime: The “Arabs”, (even if only
the US hirelings among them) are on our side! We can now manage
Palestine without outside interference and get down to business with
Iran. 

-- 
Reuven Kaminer
POBox 9013
Jerusalem 91090
Israel 972 2 6414632







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