Saturday, March 21, 2009

Israel's crimes of war. The IDF an [im]moral force

Crimes of war rarely go unnoticed and undocumented. Two Israeli broadsheets 'Haaretz' and 'Maariv' provided accounts of riveting testimony
by IDF [Israeli Defence Force] 'grunts' testimony about unprovoked killing of civilian Gazans and deliberate and wanton destruction of private and public property during Israel 22 day war in the Gaza strip. Jerusalem's war minister Ehud Barak immediately discounted these eyewitness and on the ground accounts by saying they were the 'racontars' of a disgruntled minority, and what's more the Israeli military is a force of high moral standing. Well, what else can you expect from General Barak?
Much like US Vietnam vets who testified of similar crimes that the US military committed in Vietnam or US Iraqi vets publicly exposing similar crimes against the Iraqi civilian population, the IDF soldiers' revelation has sent tremours through Israeli society. How deep and how profound is open to question now. But make no doubt of it, the shock waves will resonate deep and wide and for longer than the Israeli government or elite can veil them in pious words and thin veils. And there is an element of religion to the war. Israel is crying from any bully pulpit that it can mount that Hamas is a terrorist organisation, burning with religious fervour, to carry out a holy war against Israel. Now what do we find from the soldiers' confessions? Extremist rabbis whipping up the troops frenzy to engage in a righteous and yes 'holy war' against Palestinian civilians. How moral then are the military chaplains? We are seeing the same old story since the dawn of the Torah...of the self proclaimed prophets of blood and gore urging destruction of the enemies of the Jewish people.
Jerusalem has a lot to explain. With an extreme right wing government in formation under Benjamin Netenyahu, it will be the same old same old and worse to come. Israel is fast slipping down the slope of many nations before it as it enters a dark age and decadent and immoral and inhuman policies.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Has Communisam a future?

In today's topsy turvy world of failed high finance, it would seem so. During the heady days of China's 'Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution', it was fashionable to quote the Great Helmsman Mao that everything was not alright under the heavens, and think the man had to key to great change. He did, but at the same time, he sent his country in great crisis and turmoi. A decade later Deng Xiao ping found his saviour not in Marxism Leninsim MaoTsetung Thought but in the gospel preached at the University of Chicago Milton Freedman. Freedman was the patron saint of Ronald Reagan, and the course to capitalism's cultural economic revolution took off till the two crises of the early 21 century killed the goose that laid the golden eggs. Suddenly the much neglected John Lord Maynard Keyes has come back into prominence as the man to lead a world economic crisis out of the desert back to the promised land of prosperity. In the land of the home of the free and land of the brave--the US--as the bottom falls out of the market, Americans remain quiet and patient as the standard of living sinking into sea; overseas workers have come out into the streets to demand something be done, and not to leave the big banks and corporation who got us into financial calamity at the helm, which is certainly the case in America. With failed bankers and high living and flying ceo's how does anyone expect change?
At times like these people look elsewhere for solutions. The rabid American Republican right wing has tarred the Obama administration with the label of socialism and we might well expect soon enough to call it fascist or social fascist. Shades of Joseph Stalin!
Japan which has been hard hit by the deepening global recession, suddenly finds its Communist Party doing good business. [An historical note: under the American military government headed by the very conservative General Douglas MacArthur, new life was breathed into the Communist party as part of Japan's democratic woof and warf.] Of course 'une hirondelle ne fait pas le printemps', yet it is reasonable to suggest that the current economic crisis will revivify the left...the socialists and the communists alike. Don't expect Beijing to take the lead. They've become dyed in the wool capitalists even though they represent a very weak tea cup of Communism.
So yes Socialism and Communism do have a future. Will the future smile on them? That remains to be seen. For the moment capitalism seems on the ropes, flayling and looking towards the heaven for some of that pie in the sky that they've been peddling like snake oil to the masses for years, will fall on them like the manna from on high that Jehovah rained upon the wandering Hebrews in the desert.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Rebuilding Gaza? America's dilemma

US secretary of state Hillary Clinton has had encouraging words about reconstruction aid to Gaza. She spoke warmly of the Palestinian Authority which is a weak reed and has no real authority in Gaza. She is very careful to point out that the aid which will more or less end up in UN relief organisations hand, will not go to the wrong parties. Translation, Hamas is out of the picture. How can that be when the legitimate governing authority in Gaza is Hamas? So is Mrs Clinton playing a game of pass pass and mystification? Maybe. It is quite clear that Mr Obama's policy towards the Palestine/Israeli question is either at 'point mort' or in transition or in utter confusion. It is quite clear even to the legally blind that in order to untangle the question, Hamas has to and ought to be a party to any settlement. But that doesn't seem to be on Washington's table. And so the saga of Jerusalem's subordination of Palestinians aspirations remains paramount, the more especially since it has announced the illegal settlement of 70.000 Jews on the west bank. The US once again is acting with a coward's courage, and is banging another nail into the two states solutions coffin. Jerusalem as Guamdiary continually sings, is sealing the fate of Zionism and putting it ultimately into the cemetary [sic] of colonial history, along side of Britain and France, Spain and Portugal, and a US failure in Vietnam. And that remains America's dilemma which is of its own making and short sightedness and stupidity.