Are Canadians ready to die for Israel?

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Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

It isn't a defence. It is an accusation. I would point out that "old-fashioned imperialism" has been very succesful from the view point of the imperialists. The same can't be said for the recent history in the middle east where old-fashioned imperialism seems to be on very shaky legs and has helped to bring about the undoing of that same imperialist economy.

Unionist

Well FM, while we're on the same side as far as who the oppressors and the oppressed are and what rights need to be defended and won, we'll have to seriously part company on the underlying causes here. The U.S., U.K., Canada, and Europe have not come under the magical thrall of David Ben Gurion's ghost, Bernie Farber, and some Evangelical nutbars.

 

remind remind's picture

Chester Drawers wrote:
Quote - Care to provide examples of each individually, and so what if they did, I also call for the destruction of the USA and the thinking that has created it. As well as for the destruction of the Harpo government, and the thinking that has created it.

So Remind, do you believe that if someone thinks differently than you they are wrong and should be destroyed.

Too bad you could not read, let alone comprehend. Not once did I advocate for the destruction of peoples.

All the rest of the shit you spewed  about me wanting the destruction of people is slander fabrication it is not even a strawman. An illusion that you have created in your mind. Why? Because you want to bring about the destruction of actual peoples who think differently than you. As such  are you trying to impose your thinking and attitudes upon me?

 

Quote:
Do you believe that since ideas can not be destroyed that those that hold those ideas are destroyed/killed?  Stalin tried that so did the Khmir Rouge, did that work?  How many millions died because they thought differently?  Was that justifiable?
Ah yes this supports my statement above.

Quote:
So based on your belief system because I'm conservative and voted for Harper then I should be destroyed?
Your type of thinking, or should I say thoughtless thoughts and patriarchy needs to be destroyed, yes.

 

Quote:
So you believe that that type of response is a civil ethical response to the issue.  And I suppose you believe that the twin tower attack was justified as well. Or the trains in Spain or the hotels in Bali were all justifiable acts.
  Ah extending the analogy to try and make it unanswerable instead of sticking to the actual happenings.

Thoughtless thinker that you are, you really believe that such a juxtaposition can be made. And indeed that you have me in a corner, unable to state that you are wrong. Well I can, as welll as state that you are an idiot. And an idiot I wasted too much time on already

 

just one of the...

I agree, FM, that messianic Christian support for Israel is an important, and not to be neglected piece. It works well and is honoured by militarists because it aligned right up with their political vision for expansion. It is allowed to take power by the business community because it aligns right with the their vision for exploitation of that region. Many in the Jewish Community still see a chance for national liberation from all this, and so these people are honoured because it aligns with all of the above. But it is very, very important to recognize this latter group is often stereotyped as the driver's seat, because it resonates so perfectly with old antisemitic myths that are already sitting in American heads, and so these myths of fantastic Jewish control and power are allowed to linger. When we speak of "Zionist control," of pawns, and especially "puppetry," (I know that last one wasn't you) we tap into very strong and dangerous myths about Jews.
As we all know, concern for Jewish welfare has very little to do with why the west support for Israel, most of it is about the old imperialism that unionist speaks of: western business and western expansion. The welfare of Jews everywhere is (ironically and cynically) threatened by this support.
But in the same way, "Zionist control" has very little to do with Harper's decision making or anyone else's decision making.
  

Frustrated Mess wrote:

That serves my point. Perhaps in the wake of WWI and WWII there was a benefit to a beachhead in the land of cheap oil, but since then, and especially since 1973, US influence has gained substantially in the Arab world where all the major players, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Yemen, UAE, and Jordan were/are US protectorates and allies creating a diminishing need for a hostile and bellicose Israel in the region acting not always (and often not) in America's interests.

A rational actor could have brought Israel under control and brought about a stable and manageable middle-east years ago, certainly in the 80s and 90s, if there were not other factors at work.

But Bush was only in power since 2000 which means we need another explanation for the 80s and 90s. What could that be? 

For example, because of the US's irrational support of Israel, Iran, a regional player with aspirations at best in the 80s and 90s, is now an important and rising regional power. Arab and Islamic support for the US has eroded to the point that it is no longer merely radicals and nationalists who hate the US but almost everyone.

The stability of America's Arab allies, always precarious due to their anti-democratic and often brutal regimes, are now viewed as weak and cowardly in the face of anti-Arab and anti-Islamic Israeli and US aggression and the entire region recognizes Israel only acts with the backing of the US.

By any measure, the US has not acted as a rational actor in the mid-east. So why not? And how do we explain our own government?

 
Funny you should say that. US support was actually not strongly behind Israel during the early postwar days of the state. Truman had advisors calling for distance, and even delegitimation of the state. Importantly, most of Israel's support came from Britain and France, which still had many leftover colonial oil and gas interests in the region, not to mention shipping (recall Suez). To some extent there was support and arms from the Soviet Union as well. Were all these countries under the spell of "zionist" influence? 
It was not until the older colonial relationships declined for good and the U.S. firmly took the reins when it came to colonizing (in the modern fashion) and exploiting the middle east, that they found themselves becoming soulmates with Israel. It is a must for anybody who wants to own the ME, because a colonist cannot let the place organize and unify no matter what else it does.
Islam is a powerful force connecting many turks, north africans, arabs, and, persians alike. US doctrine has long called for fencing off the forces that connect people and Israel was the only non-muslim majority space separating two continents. Pan-Arabism was also a threat to US power, and Israel is a door wedge that separates egypt and parts of north africa and the arabian peninsula. 
And yes you are right, not all of Israels bellicose acts are in America's direct interest.  Most of the Saudi government's repression is not either. Empowering Israel's rightwing and arming it is a very clumsy way to divide and conquer the middle east but the americans will always work with what they have including talibs, kurdish nationalists, mujahedeen, even persian clerics when it suits them. The stability of America's presence was once stronger when Israel was stronger. If that is not the case today then it is because they only see today the fruits of their efforts yesterday, and there is a lot of lag from then to now, and the proxies are clumsy to handle meanwhile. Irrationality is unavoidable and is not equal to "Zionist control". The reactions the US will take to get back to their interests will not be perfect because they have to work through a political process and electorate that doesnt always agree. There will be irrationality that comes out of that process but that is natural. Even if some of the pressure comes from religious nutbars that is not "Zionist control". Much more comes from business and from neoconservative empire-building.
It is a mistake to assume that the U.S. would prefer less "precariousness" among its own Arab allies. It would like them to be stable, sure, but not too stable. They still have to be regimes that are dependent on the U.S. to live. America even sells its hired Arab leaders the guns they use to repress their own peoples. If these regimes do not require U.S. military help, then they are not as subservient to the U.S. and can veer off in another direction, or worse, speak among themselves of coming together. The U.S. is a rock and Israel is the hard place and the U.S.-friendly dictatorships like Saudi Arabia are kept in the middle so they dont forget who they work for. Hint: it's not Israel.
It is a very complicated job to control the ME but one thing is clear: the myth of "Zionist (read: Jewish) puppetmasters" is not the where you will find the ones in charge. 

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

joc that's a great post but very difficult to read.

Unionist

JOC, please try editing your post as follows:

1. Put your cursor right at the end of each paragraph, after the last period.

2. Hit "Enter".

3. Repeat for each para.

That should create proper spacing.

And I join RP in applauding it!

 

Unionist

Sorry, my above trick didn't work - so I've fixed it up and am repeating joc's post here:

just one of the concerned wrote:

I agree, FM, that messianic Christian support for Israel is an important, and not to be neglected piece. It works well and is honoured by militarists because it aligned right up with their political vision for expansion. It is allowed to take power by the business community because it aligns right with the their vision for exploitation of that region. Many in the Jewish Community still see a chance for national liberation from all this, and so these people are honoured because it aligns with all of the above. But it is very, very important to recognize this latter group is often stereotyped as the driver's seat, because it resonates so perfectly with old antisemitic myths that are already sitting in American heads, and so these myths of fantastic Jewish control and power are allowed to linger. When we speak of "Zionist control," of pawns, and especially "puppetry," (I know that last one wasn't you) we tap into very strong and dangerous myths about Jews.

As we all know, concern for Jewish welfare has very little to do with why the west support for Israel, most of it is about the old imperialism that unionist speaks of: western business and western expansion. The welfare of Jews everywhere is (ironically and cynically) threatened by this support.

But in the same way, "Zionist control" has very little to do with Harper's decision making or anyone else's decision making.

[Cites part of FM's post]

Funny you should say that. US support was actually not strongly behind Israel during the early postwar days of the state. Truman had advisors calling for distance, and even delegitimation of the state. Importantly, most of Israel's support came from Britain and France, which still had many leftover colonial oil and gas interests in the region, not to mention shipping (recall Suez). To some extent there was support and arms from the Soviet Union as well. Were all these countries under the spell of "zionist" influence?

It was not until the older colonial relationships declined for good and the U.S. firmly took the reins when it came to colonizing (in the modern fashion) and exploiting the middle east, that they found themselves becoming soulmates with Israel. It is a must for anybody who wants to own the ME, because a colonist cannot let the place organize and unify no matter what else it does.

Islam is a powerful force connecting many turks, north africans, arabs, and, persians alike. US doctrine has long called for fencing off the forces that connect people and Israel was the only non-muslim majority space separating two continents. Pan-Arabism was also a threat to US power, and Israel is a door wedge that separates egypt and parts of north africa and the arabian peninsula.

And yes you are right, not all of Israels bellicose acts are in America's direct interest. Most of the Saudi government's repression is not either. Empowering Israel's rightwing and arming it is a very clumsy way to divide and conquer the middle east but the americans will always work with what they have including talibs, kurdish nationalists, mujahedeen, even persian clerics when it suits them. The stability of America's presence was once stronger when Israel was stronger. If that is not the case today then it is because they only see today the fruits of their efforts yesterday, and there is a lot of lag from then to now, and the proxies are clumsy to handle meanwhile. Irrationality is unavoidable and is not equal to "Zionist control". The reactions the US will take to get back to their interests will not be perfect because they have to work through a political process and electorate that doesnt always agree. There will be irrationality that comes out of that process but that is natural. Even if some of the pressure comes from religious nutbars that is not "Zionist control". Much more comes from business and from neoconservative empire-building.

It is a mistake to assume that the U.S. would prefer less "precariousness" among its own Arab allies. It would like them to be stable, sure, but not too stable. They still have to be regimes that are dependent on the U.S. to live. America even sells its hired Arab leaders the guns they use to repress their own peoples. If these regimes do not require U.S. military help, then they are not as subservient to the U.S. and can veer off in another direction, or worse, speak among themselves of coming together. The U.S. is a rock and Israel is the hard place and the U.S.-friendly dictatorships like Saudi Arabia are kept in the middle so they dont forget who they work for. Hint: it's not Israel.

It is a very complicated job to control the ME but one thing is clear: the myth of "Zionist (read: Jewish) puppetmasters" is not the where you will find the ones in charge.

Slumberjack

When Israel becomes less useful as the 'hard place' over time, because after all, it's only been sixty years or so, and as we know, colonialism never rests comfortably for long, the anti-Semitic voices on the margins will rise up in the mainstream, as the old scapegoats and villains become the new again through the cyclical processes.  It isn't difficult to imagine that a Limbaugh like figure could be sent forward with a different set of enemies to rail against.

Joel_Goldenberg

Unionist wrote earlier:

Iran has never once committed aggression against any other country.

Iran supported aggression against and an invasion of the United States. The 444-day hostage crisis at the American embassy was in effect an invasion and occupation as the embassy, as has been noted here on Babble in reference to the Israeli embassy, is American territory.

From Wikipedia:

The duration of the hostages' captivity has been blamed on internal Iranian revolutionary politics. As Ayatollah Khomeini told Iran's president:

This action has many benefits. ... This has united our people. Our opponents do not dare act against us. We can put the constitution to the people's vote without difficulty, and carry out presidential and parliamentary elections.[39]

 

So, in my opinion, Iran committed aggression by an act of omission — not expelling the students from the embassy for much more than a year.

remind remind's picture

Whew, that must have been a struggle to find one instance of what you believe to be aggression by Iran.

I guess you want us to forget the ACTUAL act of aggression of Israel against the USA?

Joel_Goldenberg

remind wrote:

Whew, that must have been a struggle to find one instance of what you believe to be aggression by Iran.

I guess you want us to forget the ACTUAL act of aggression of Israel against the USA?

 

a) Actually, not at all, I thought of it quite quickly. Just didn't have time to respond before.

b) I was only focusing on one very specific assertion made by Unionist. How is Israel relevant to that?

remind remind's picture

More relevant tham your alleged act of ommission that you claim to be aggression. Take about scraping the bottom! :rolleyes:

Joel_Goldenberg

The ommission was not alleged-it was fact.

Wouldn't you call it aggression if say, radical anti-Muslim students occupied the Iranian Embassy in Washington for 444 days and held its staff hostage, and the U.S. government not only did nothing about it, but publicly expressed support for it?

Slumberjack

You know, the old roll eyes emoticon conveyed a far more meaningful display of ones thoughts than the newer version.

Joel_Goldenberg

remind wrote:
More relevant tham your alleged act of ommission that you claim to be aggression. Take about scraping the bottom! :rolleyes:

 

444 days of enabling the occupation of U.S. territory is scraping the bottom? 

remind remind's picture

Joel are YOU ready to die for Israel?

Slumberjack

And if not, are you willing to have others die for Israel?

Joel_Goldenberg

Well if the existence of millions of Jews was well and truly threatened with extermination, I'd try to do at least something, although I'd only hold back any army I would be in... 

Joel_Goldenberg

To Slumberjack: When I get elected president or prime minister, that question will be relevant...

 

ETA: I guess this means I won the Iran argument. Yay!Laughing

Slumberjack

Voting is irrelevant as well, except that the choice is generally indicative of political persuasions, and the willingness to support political parties that have historically used other people's lives for their own benefit.  One does not have to lead something in order to be willing to support the objectives, so the question is relevant, although I won't prod you any further about your answer.  I'll guess instead.

Joel_Goldenberg

Slumberjack wrote:
Voting is irrelevant as well, except that the choice is generally indicative of political persuasions, and the willingness to support political parties that have historically used other people's lives for their own benefit.

 

Haven't they all? At least the elected ones...

Jingles

Quote:
Wouldn't you call it aggression if say, radical anti-Muslim students occupied the Iranian Embassy in Washington for 444 days and held its staff hostage, and the U.S. government not only did nothing about it, but publicly expressed support for it?

[url=http://www.counterpunch.org/sasan07112008.html]The Shoot Down of Iran Air flight 655[/url]

Quote:
“Sea of Lies” told the same story but in greater detail. It recounted how the “trigger happy” captain of USS Vincennes, Will Rogers III, had invaded the territorial waters of Iran looking for a fight under the pretext of rescuing a Liberian tanker, the Stoval, which in reality did not exist. Then, after creating a tense situation, the inevitable happened: it shot down a civilian airliner. What followed was a campaign of lies and fabrications at the highest levels of US government to “cover up” what had actually happened and the place of this incident within the broader US war against Iran. “The top Pentagon brass,” write John Barry and Roger Charles, “understood from the beginning that if the whole truth about the Vincennes came out, it would mean months of humiliating headlines. So the U.S. Navy did what all navies do after terrible blunders at sea: it told lies and handed out medals.”

The US was allied with Saddam Hussein in waging war against Iran. Iran has never been a threat to the US or the terrorist state of Israel.

wwSwimming

Given that Iran was a democracy until the US deposed Mossadegh and installed the Shah, in the '50's - maybe it's the US that needs invading ?  or at least UN sanctions ?

I think the question is - what is taught in Canadian schools about world history ? Obviously, Canada has a better human rights record than the US.

 But, if a young Canadian person seeking a career is tricked into thinking that they're "fighting for the good guys" by carrying water for Israel or the US, they're on their way to Dying for a Lie.

I'm curious if Canadian schools teach "both sides".  For example, in addition to teaching that Israel was created in 1948, do they teach the youngsters that part and parcel of that process was the destruction of 400 Palestinian villages ?

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

http://LASIK-Flap.com ~ Health Warning about LASIK Eye Surgery

Unionist

Joel_Goldenberg, Iran doesn't attack other countries. Israel and the U.S. do. It would be more dignified to recognize reality and not play word games - especially when such games are turned into a blood libel aimed at justifying aggressive war against Iran.

 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

wwSwimming wrote:

Obviously, Canada has a better human rights record than the US.

That's not obvious to me.

Lord Palmerston

Joel_Goldenberg wrote:
When I get elected president or prime minister, that question will be relevant...

I heard the former "safe Liberal seat" of Outremont is now actually held by an NDPer.  Maybe Ignatieff needs a candidate in that riding. After all, it helps to start as an MP first.

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

Quote:
Well FM, while we're on the same side as far as who the oppressors and the oppressed are and what rights need to be defended and won, we'll have to seriously part company on the underlying causes here. The U.S., U.K., Canada, and Europe have not come under the magical thrall of David Ben Gurion's ghost, Bernie Farber, and some Evangelical nutbars.

In fact, I think I argued that Bernie Farber et al are merely cheerleaders of the nutbars.

In any case ... here we go ...

Quote:
I agree, FM, that messianic Christian support for Israel is an important, and not to be neglected piece. It works well and is honoured by militarists because it aligned right up with their political vision for expansion. It is allowed to take power by the business community because it aligns right with the their vision for exploitation of that region. Many in the Jewish Community still see a chance for national liberation from all this, and so these people are honoured because it aligns with all of the above. But it is very, very important to recognize this latter group is often stereotyped as the driver's seat, because it resonates so perfectly with old antisemitic myths that are already sitting in American heads, and so these myths of fantastic Jewish control and power are allowed to linger. When we speak of "Zionist control," of pawns, and especially "puppetry," (I know that last one wasn't you) we tap into very strong and dangerous myths about Jews.

In fact, Zionist control is your choice of words, aren't they? I don't believe I used them. Also, it is interesting to note that Zionists, and their defenders, today often talk of a global Islamic conspiracy. But that's an aside ...

Certainly you must agree, in the US, there is a powerful Zionist lobby that spends tens of millions of dollars every year and takes great pride in its ability to unseat politicians not viewed as friendly to Israel. Does that put the Zionist lobby in control? Certainly not, but it does ensure them a great deal of political influence, or would you deny that?

Quote:
Funny you should say that. US support was actually not strongly behind Israel during the early postwar days of the state. Truman had advisors calling for distance, and even delegitimation of the state. Importantly, most of Israel's support came from Britain and France, which still had many leftover colonial oil and gas interests in the region, not to mention shipping (recall Suez). To some extent there was support and arms from the Soviet Union as well. Were all these countries under the spell of "zionist" influence?

Again, the characterization is yours. And I agree the US was at first cool to Israel, but they warmed up fairly quickly when the British convinced the US that the mid-east was in danger of falling to communists and so they over threw the democratically elected government of Iran and warmed up to the Zionist state.

Quote:

It was not until the older colonial relationships declined for good and the U.S. firmly took the reins when it came to colonizing (in the modern fashion) and exploiting the middle east, that they found themselves becoming soulmates with Israel. It is a must for anybody who wants to own the ME, because a colonist cannot let the place organize and unify no matter what else it does.

Islam is a powerful force connecting many turks, north africans, arabs, and, persians alike. US doctrine has long called for fencing off the forces that connect people and Israel was the only non-muslim majority space separating two continents. Pan-Arabism was also a threat to US power, and Israel is a door wedge that separates egypt and parts of north africa and the arabian peninsula.

First, I disagree. The best sphere of influence is one that is self-policing. Islam is by no means a monolithic culture. It is as riven by divisions, religious and ethnic, and rivalries for influence and power as any great religion ever has been and maybe even more so. The divisions were already in place.

You make it seem as though Israel is just a bit player in the middle-east. manipulated and controlled as though it has no ambitions nor imperial chararcteristics of its own. I disagree.

I will have to come back to this.

 

 

 

just one of the...

Frustrated Mess wrote:

Quote:

You make it seem as though Israel is just a bit player in the middle-east. manipulated and controlled as though it has no ambitions nor imperial chararcteristics of its own. I disagree. 

I would also disagree with this, probably because I never said it.
Israel has its own ambitions and imperial vision, and this vision is armed by the U.S. and is now the largest recipient of US foreign aid.

More important than both these things is the nearly complete diplomatic free rein it gets also. In a huge way these gifts help shape who's politically successful in the country. This is now, and it's because of colonialism. 

That there was no eternal US commitment to provide this level of help for Israel "from the bosom", and thats obvious because it doesnt even go back very far if you look at the history. It is a recent decision, one picked up from Western European leaders which have since chilled their own commitments. 
This can be well explained by colonialism and it cant be explained at all by antisemitic myths.
Other, ideological explanations like evangelical giddiness for Israel are a small part, but we must ask why now? Partly because of the rise of the religious right in politics, but consider also that religious contributions to foreign policy are mostly allowed because they are aligned with business and the military, not the other way around. 

Sometimes the local vision in Israel is only indirectly or tangentially helpful to U.S. goals. Sometimes not at all, sometimes it even hurts. but that doesn't matter. Direct service is not expected, it is never expected, whether your a Saudi monarch or a Kurdish fighter or a Pashtun drug dealer. They work with what they have, and that's easily explained by regular colonialism, not antisemitic myths.

This attempt at a Jewish liberation movement was not successful, and has shown itself to be oppressive, about that we are agreed. But thats not the same thing at all as suggesting that these aspirations control US and Canadian governments. 

Consider, finally, that western interests would rather that we explain away their support for Israel with antisemitic fantasies of control, with "zionist puppetry", and tail-wags-the-dog explanations. Also easily explained by colonialism, because colonialism does this all the time.

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