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For my generation, the name of Danny the Red, or Daniel Cohn-Bendit, is forever connected to Paris and the glorious revolution of 1968, to Godard’s La Chinoise and Antonioni’s Zabriski Point, to ‘It is forbidden to forbid’ graffiti in universities, to long haired hippies, to marijuana and free love, to barricades in Paris and Berkeley and to the sweet wind of freedom that swept across the continents. Like its great predecessor, the Spring of Nations in 1848, the 1968 uprising failed but it transformed Europe and the US. Danny the Red was a mover of the revolution and a great source of inspiration for those of us who sought freedom and equality.

Years passed by and Cohn-Bendit, now a respectable Euro MP from the German Green Party, is visiting Jerusalem. Times have changed and so has he and it isn’t just his waistline. He stresses that he is neither Zionist nor anti-Zionist. Jews can live in Europe, too; they do not have to move to Israel. He supports creation of a Palestinian state, he says, and is against the occupation. He feels that Sharon, too, is against the occupation – maybe Sharon wants to have a slightly Greater Israel, but not much greater. The Wall, inhuman as it is, is a proof of Sharon’s intention to limit Israeli expansion.

He tells of his meetings with the ‘boys’ – his new friends, the War party in Washington. Perle and Wolfowitz shared with him their plans for the Middle East, he says. They want to give Iraq to a Hashemite ruler and to push Palestinians into Jordan to create a Palestinian state there. Then, the Jews will get the whole of Palestine. They are Bolsheviks, he says. ‘Bolshevik’ is a swear word for this new Danny. He has a better, much better plan: give a state to Palestinians, and bring Israel into NATO and the European Union. Make Russia, China, everybody declare their support for the Jewish state, the best and the only democracy in the Middle East. If the Americans go along, he can deliver European support for the American occupation of Iraq, he says. Even his hosts from the liberal Zionist Peace Now shudder uneasily.

Cohn-Bendit feels he can do it. He has many achievements behind him. He promoted the dismemberment of Yugoslavia. He supported NATO’s bombing of Serbia into submission. But the Jewish cause occupies much of his time and effort. He is proud that Germany supplied Israel with the nuclear-capable submarines at the expense of the German taxpayer. ‘This gift is their payment for Holocaust’, says the German Euro MP. Why are a million potential casualties (most probably Arabs) the desired atonement? Isn’t he worried that Iran or Syria can become a target of nuclear warheads from these submarines? – I ask him. No, he is not worried. But the homicidal maniacs now ruling the Holy Land consider ‘taking the world down with them’, in the words of Martin van Creveld of Hebrew University. I push him; his country is also liable to suffer. ‘What country?’ Danny asks innocently. Born in France, serving in Brussels and Strasbourg, loving Israel, he forgot he was representing Germany. Can’t a Jew love his country? Yes, if he knows which country it is.

Still, he does not think Israel is always right. One may, on certain conditions, criticize Israel. These conditions are rather rigorous and hard to meet. March last year, a Syrian immigrant and member of a German state assembly from Cohn-Bendit’s party, Jamal Karsli, called on Germany to stop providing Israel with weapons of mass destruction and referred to the ‘strong Jewish influence in German media’. Cohn-Bendit and his Parteigenossen practically lynched Karsli for ‘anti-Semitism’. Their attack was supported by Michel Friedman, ‘the most eloquent Jewish spokesman in Germany’ –this was before this regular patron of Belarusian whores was apprehended while pushing cocaine.

Have you no qualms, I ask him, for invoking anti-Semitism like Bush and Ashcroft, Friedman and Foxman? It is a Bolshevik attitude, he says. ‘One should be able to express a view even if a similar opinion is expressed by some unpleasant folks’. Bravo, Danny! But why didn’t he think that way when he expelled Karsli from the Party for ‘repeating the Nazi canard of Jewish control’? Why didn’t this brilliant thought stop him – or other Jews – from forever appealing to the Protocols of Zion as to their best defense: if the Protocols say the Jews should take over the media, ipso facto no one is allowed to notice the steady takeover of the European media by Jewish interests. Why can’t we apply the same maxim here that ‘One should be able to express a view even if a similar opinion is expressed by some unpleasant folks.’

The reason is that, as a rule, Jews are unable to apply Kant’s categorical imperative to make a universal rule. It could provide a definition of a Jew: ‘a person unable to make an objective moral judgment’ because the old religious or ethnic criteria do not apply anymore. His judgment will be forever different whether it is good for Jews or bad for Jews. WMD are bad in Gentile hands but good in Jewish ones. Nationalism of a goy is bad, devotion to the Jewish cause is good. Equal rights for Jew and non-Jew in Europe is good but bad in Palestine. Karsli was bad for Jews, so he had to go. TOP

Expelled by Cohn-Bendit from the Green Party, Karsli joined the FDP of Juergen Moellemann, a brave German politician who objected to the rearmament of Israel and to Jewish control of the German media. In a short while, Juergen Moellemann had a fatal accident: both his parachutes did not open. (Practically in the same time, Anna Lindh, the Swedish Foreign minister and steadfast supporter of the Palestinian cause was assassinated in Stockholm.) Karsli’s political career was stopped in bud.

It was just the beginning of Cohn-Bendit’s campaign against Arab immigrants in Europe. Recently the European Union commissioned a study on anti-Semitism in Europe. A group of Zionist researchers took the job and produced a report that blamed anti-Semitism on Semites – more precisely, on Arabs.

It was an improbable suggestion. The ethnically and religiously diverse East never knew racism. Anyone with even a limited knowledge of Arabs knows they have no racial prejudice against Jews per se. In the past, as David Shasha, a Syrian Jewish researcher wrote, “Jews and other ethnic minorities served within the Islamic polity as recognized members of a cultured society and participated in an intimate way in the evolution and development of that society”. In the present, dozens of Jews who support the Palestinian cause live in Arab Palestinian homes from Rafah to Jenin. Be it Norman Finkelstein or Jennifer Loewenstein, they never experienced racial hatred. As for myself, I always felt at home with the Arabs, with Maghrebis in Marseille and Saudis in London or Egyptians in Cairo and Palestinians in my hometown of Jaffa.

In order to show the desired result, the researchers included anti-Israeli activity within their scope and came to conclusion: ‘Muslims and pro-Palestinian activists stand behind anti-Semitism in Europe’. Rightly, the European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia (EUMC) shelved the report for it was “tainted by anti-Muslim bias and the use of inappropriate research methods”. Instead of recognizing their errors, the researchers went to complain to the Israeli daily Ha’aratz, that the Europeans dismissed their report due to “excessive political correctness”.

When do Jews object to political correctness? Whenever it interferes with their Muslim-bashing. The European antiracist watchdog judged “the focus on Muslim and pro-Palestinian perpetrators to be inflammatory” and liable to cause “civil war in Europe”. But a civil war in Europe against millions of Arabs and other Muslims is a Zionist objective, a part and parcel of the US-led War on Islam. Ha’aratz reported:

 
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Israel 
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When an author and an editor of a left-wing magazine repeats word-perfect
the last speech of Ashcroft at ADL New York, it can’t but cause some eyebrow
twitching. That is the case with recent condemnation of ‘antisemitism’ by
Nat Weinstein[1] http://www.socialistviewpoint.org/sum_03/sum_03_08.html on
pages of The Socialist Viewpoint, a high-quality magazine consistently
supporting democracy in Palestine and end to the Jewish apartheid state.

What is worse, Weinstein’s style and rhetoric are those of Ashcroft and of
Abe Foxman, as well. Weinstein writes: “Buchanan’s insinuations of a Jewish
conspiracy in the service of Israel echo a similar claim that lay at the
heart of Adolph Hitler’s brand of fascism.” However, an open Jewish
‘conspiracy’ of supporting Israel is a hard fact, and it is expressed by
almost every Jewish newspaper by slogan ‘Jews stand steadfast behind Israel’
. This slogan is not an empty word: recent survey shows 86% of the US Jews
support Israel. In a recent discussion on the Web, Jeff Blankfort, a
consistent antizionist, made a sober conclusion: “the distinction that we
are always careful to make between being Jewish and being Zionist is
essentially deceptive and that while all Jews are not Zionists, the
organized Jewish communities throughout the world, despite whatever
differences they may have, are totally behind the Zionist project. To
pretend that these organizations do not speak for the overall Jewish
community, one, that without any doubt, supports Israel as a Jewish state,
is illusory.”

Weinstein creates ‘guilt by association’ as he calls explicit words of
Buchanan ‘insinuations echoing Adolf Hitler’. However, ‘guilt by association
‘ is a double-edged weapon, as he himself echoes Abe Foxman, Ashcroft and
Bush. That is why let us deal with the question properly

Weinstein writes: “claim that the “Jewish Lobby”-a small group of
pro-Zionist Jews-could dictate foreign or domestic policy to the hard-nosed,
quintessentially-pragmatic American capitalist class, is absurd. In fact,
those that make such a charge are either simple-minded fools or unmitigated
anti-Semitic scoundrels.”

It is an arrogant statement, for this opinion is universally shared by
billions of people outside of the US, and by many Americans as well, with
one correction: the Jewish Lobby is not a ‘small group of pro-Zionist Jews’
but an extremely powerful group of billionaires, media lords, and their
supporters in the left and the right, from the New York Times to the Nation,
from Wolfowitz of Pentagon to Rabbi Lerner of Tikkun. (This subject is
covered in Fiesta of St Fermin, by Israel Shamir). ‘Hard-nosed American
capitalists’ are indeed “quintessentially-pragmatic”, and they understand
what is good for them personally. That is why even the dedicated antisemite
Henry Ford preferred to scrap his book when he had met with the irresistible
force of Jewish boycott. That is why the American parliamentarians are
united in their support of Israel, as it was recently confirmed by the
Senate vote 89 to 4 against Syria. The Iraqi war was a disaster from the
point of view of American capitalism: as it was predicted, it brought them
no oil, no weaponry orders, no new friends; but the capitalists are not
idealists Weinstein presupposes: they know that their stand against Israel
would ruin them personally, and they disregard ‘the general interest of
capitalist class’.

Indeed, Buchanan and La Rouche (censured by Weinstein) represent the true
interests of the American capitalists (or ‘the middle class’ in usual terms)
when they fight the Jewish Lobby. They aren’t natural allies for the Left,
but not less unlikely than Foxman and Ashcroft. Weinstein tries to adhere
the label of racist, Nazi and fascist to La Rouche; but the label does not
stick. Instead of expressing his approval, Weinstein is visibly upset that
La Rouche is not a racist: “Rather than demonizing African Americans, La
Rouche lays claim to the heritage of Martin Luther King and . established a
relationship with the Black nationalist Nation of Islam.”

Weinstein is hard to please: La Rouche ‘uses anti-capitalist and
anti-imperialist’ slogans, so he’s got to be a fascist (!). La Rouche ‘does
not attack Jews, communists and striking workers’, so he is a
crypto-fascist. La Rouche ‘learned from Trotsky’, so he is a perverted
fascist.

It reminded me a short piece by Hanoch Levine, our best playwright:

“The Military Governor’s Standing Orders for soldiers in Occupied
territories:

A nervous pedestrian is a suspected Arab terrorist.

A calm pedestrian is a suspected cold-blooded Arab terrorist.

A looking upwards pedestrian is a suspected religious Arab terrorist.

A looking downwards pedestrian is a suspected shy Arab terrorist.

A pedestrian whose eyes are shut is a suspected sleeping Arab terrorist.

A stay-at-home person is a suspected sick Arab terrorist.

The above-mentioned suspects should be arrested, and after a warning shot,
taken to the morgue”

Indeed, Weinstein does not produce a single proof of La Rouche’s ‘fascism’,
or his similarity to Hitler and Mussolini. His true objection to La Rouche
and Buchanan is based on one thing, namely on their anti-Jewish rhetoric. He
comes clear in following lines:

‘The fascists will say that it was the Jews who were the masterminds behind
American imperialism’s 55-year-long role of creating, financing and arming
the Zionist state of Israel. That’s why those who profess opposition to
Zionism are either foolish or anti-Semitic when they charge the so-called
“Jewish lobby” with dictating American foreign policy.’

But we, the friends of Palestine, Jeff Blankfort, Michael Neumann, Elias
Davidsson, Stan Heller, Norm Finkelstein, David Hirst, Mazin Qumsiyeh and
many, many others (surely not racist antisemites) are not more foolish than
Weinstein. We are just honest folk and we say what we think is true. For us,
it is more important to stop today the Israeli-American aggression in the
Middle East than to worry for ‘the Jews’ and their position tomorrow, for
truth and sincerity is the best defence against forthcoming ‘fascists’.

2

Indeed, should the Marxists, including The Socialist Viewpoint, support and
protect ‘the Jews’ from the left? The Marxist view of the Jews was formed by
Karl Marx, Kautsky, Lenin, Trotsky and Abram Leon. It is founded on
rejection of the concept of ‘the Jewish nation’. Lenin said[2]: ‘this
Zionist idea is absolutely false and essentially reactionary’. He quoted
approvingly: “The modern Jew is a product of the unnatural selection to
which his forebears were subjected for nearly eighteen centuries.” Abram
Leon completed this view with his vision of ‘people-class’. For him, the
Jews were the original capitalists of pre-capitalist society; people who
preferred to fulfil antisocial function of money-lenders and tax-collectors.
Naturally, such a ‘people-class’ does not deserve our support.

But even if Weinstein considers ‘the Jews’ being a separate nation, it is
still no reason to protect them. Lenin called for ‘revolutionary war against
contra-revolutionary nations'[3], and wrote in 1919: “If we fight [the US
President] Wilson, and Wilson turns a small nation into his tool, we should
explicitly fight this tool”[4]. Equally, Leon Trotsky denied any connection
to the Jews and rejected appeals of the Jews.

Marxists are against RACIST antisemitism, but thankfully this plague is
eradicated. Racist antisemitism should not be confused – not only with
anti-Zionism, as Weinstein correctly notes, but with non-racist rejection of
‘the Jews’ elsewhere, as well. The Jewish Question of Marx and of Leon
provides an example of such non-racist rejection.

 
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Anti-Semitism, Israel Lobby 
Israel Shamir
About Israel Shamir

Israel Shamir has written extensively on public affairs, primarily relating to the Israel/Palestine conflict and Russia, including three books, Galilee Flowers, Cabbala of Power and Masters of Discourse available in English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Arabic, Norwegian, Swedish, Italian, and Hungarian.

He describes himself as a native of Novosibirsk, Siberia, who he moved to Israel in 1969, served as paratrooper in the army and fought in the 1973 war, afterwards turning to journalism and writing. During the late 1970s, he joined the BBC in London later living in Japan. After returning to Israel in 1980, Shamir wrote for the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz, and was the Knesset spokesman for the Israel Socialist Party (Mapam), also translating and annotating the cryptic works of S.Y. Agnon, the only Hebrew Nobel Prize winning writer, from the original Hebrew into Russian.

His perspective on the Israel/Palestine conflict was summed up in The Pine and the Olive, published in 1988 and republished in 2004. That same year, he was received in the Orthodox Church of Jerusalem and Holy Land, being baptised Adam by Archbishop Theodosius Attalla Hanna. He now lives in Jaffa and spends much time in Moscow and Stockholm; he is father of three sons.