Posts Tagged ‘anti-colonialism’
IN CASE SOMEONE IS WONDERING – A Note from China Rose
Is the phrase “The Synagogue of Satan” quoted by Rev Farrakhan the most egregious example of anti-Semitism in the New Testament? Lets’s take a look.
The phrase Synagogue of Satan, is followed by a clear explication: “they who say they are Jews but are not.” Thus fake Jews are comprise Synagogue of Satan, not real Jews. So you cannot look at this phrase and see it as a blanket condemnation of every Jew. But it does condemn the poseurs. The problem that John’s vision reveals is people who claim to be Jews, but do NOT have a clue what being a Jew really means. The controversy over who is a Jew, and what that means continues to this day. Why is the nature of Jewish identity so disputed? Is being Jewish supporting Israel and AIPAC, amassing piles of money, following customs and traditions, living in Israel, being a cultured liberal, or embracing the tenets of the Talmud? Reform, Conservative or Orthodox? Is it ethnicity, religion, national pride? Are Ashkenazism Jews at all? What about Zionism? Can a campaign to dominate a geographical region by force be a pre-condition of qualifying to be Jewish?
John the Revelator’s metaphor suggests that all the above are pretenders and frauds and comprise the Synagogue of Satan. “Satanic” not because Jews are inherently evil, which is a ridiculous interpretation. It is a Satanic Synagogue because it substitutes worldly affiliations for spiritual, carnal values for Biblical. If there is one theme that persists from Old to New Testament it is this: God’s ways are not Man’s Ways, Don’t Trust in Man and in the succinct words of Jesus, “My Kingdom is Not of This World” From the very beginning – the flight from Egypt – there were pretenders, worshippers of the Golden Calf, the self-deceived, who thought they could break God’s laws and get away with it.
While it is true that very few Jews are following their own precepts, it’s also true for Gentiles.
If there is anything that sets Jews apart, it is the level of hypocrisy required to maintain that their Jewishness makes them better than anyone else, and that being “the chosen ones” means they don’t have to study the Bible and read the phrases about God’s condemnations & judgements of a nation that was “uncircumcised in heart.” Jesus was aware of that hypocrisy, despised it and condemned it. Being Jewish, He was surrounded with it. But He was not the first. Most of the Hebrew prophets had already experienced the lethal hypocrisy of the their Jewish leaders. Their lives were threatened when they exposed it.
Isaiah 6:5 So I said: “Woe [is] me, for I am undone! Because I [am] a man of unclean lips, And I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King, The LORD of hosts.”
God’s condemnations of the people of Israel and imprecations against them for their hypocrisy occur thoughout the people. The Book of Isaiah is a good case in point. http://tinyurl.com/y35lthj Read at least Chapter 1 if you think Jews have a free pass from God to do whatever they want and remain in God’s grace. In short the Synagogue of Satan refers to hypocrisy based on selfish motives and self-deceit. Unfortunately, this synagogue is still taking new members.
2 Hear, O heavens! Listen, O earth!
For the LORD has spoken:
“I reared children and brought them up,
but they have rebelled against me.
3 The ox knows his master,
the donkey his owner’s manger,
but Israel does not know,
my people do not understand.”
4 Ah, sinful nation,
a people loaded with guilt,
a brood of evildoers,
children given to corruption!
They have forsaken the LORD;
they have spurned the Holy One of Israel
and turned their backs on him.
13 Stop bringing meaningless offerings!
Your incense is detestable to me.
New Moons, Sabbaths and convocations—
I cannot bear your evil assemblies.
14 Your New Moon festivals and your appointed feasts
my soul hates.
They have become a burden to me;
I am weary of bearing them.
15 When you spread out your hands in prayer,
I will hide my eyes from you;
even if you offer many prayers,
I will not listen.
Your hands are full of blood;
16 wash and make yourselves clean.
Take your evil deeds
out of my sight!
Stop doing wrong,
This is part 3 of a series…
Thanks to Gilad Atzmon and Democracy Now for airing this segment
by Antony Loewenstein, John Docker and Ned Curthoys – newmatilda.com – 31 March 2010
It’s not just major western allies who are talking tough with Israel – evidence suggests ordinary Jews are also withdrawing their support from the rogue state
Earlier this month the Sydney Morning Herald’s chief correspondent Paul McGeough quizzically asked if there are any “major allies” left for Israel to offend. With the abuse of passports in the Dubai Mossad scandal, Israel has caused anger in Britain, Ireland, Australia, France and Germany.
It has even managed to annoy the United States, announcing on 8 March, the day of US vice president Joe Biden’s arrival in Jerusalem, that 1600 hundred new homes for Israeli Jews would be built in East Jerusalem — that is, on illegally occupied and annexed Palestinian land. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called the announcement “an insult to the United States”, and President Obama reportedly gave Israeli PM Binyamin Netanyahu an icy reception during last week’s visit to the White House. The implication is clear: if Israel is rapidly losing moral legitimacy in the world, so might its close ally, sponsor, and defender in the United Nations.
Some years ago the American political scientists John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, in the London Review of Books, warned that Americans must see that continuing total support for Israel will harm their own national interests, jeopardising “not only US security but that of much of the rest of the world”. With that situation now playing out, western countries are finally beginning to question their traditional subservience to Israel.
Another of Israel’s powerful allies, however, has been steadily moving away from the rogue state for a number of years. The international Jewish Diaspora no longer automatically backs every Israeli action. In what was at first a trickle and is now a broad stream of dissent, Diaspora Jews are regaining their independence and questioning Israel’s moral and intellectual foundations. Refusing the leadership of the blindly pro-Israeli Zionist organisations, they have formed groups of “independent Jewish voices”, including in Australia, suggesting that Israel does not act in the name of all Jews, as it claims to do.
A recent US study found that only 54 per cent of non-Orthodox Jews under 35 were “comfortable with the idea of a Jewish state” — compared to more than 80 per cent of those over 65. Another study, conducted by progressive Jewish lobby J Street, found significant opposition among American Jews to continued settlement building in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. As well, high-profile Jewish activists and intellectuals such as Naomi Klein, Judith Butler, and Ronnie Kasrils, are energetically joining in the international movement of boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel, which was launched by Palestinian civil society in 2005 and inspired by the non-violent anti-racist, anti-colonial philosophies of Gandhi and Martin Luther King.
In Australia, following similar initiatives in the United States and Britain, prominent Jews have signed a petition rejecting the 1950 Israeli Law of Return whereby people of Jewish descent can migrate to and become citizens of Israel. They are also expressing anger that Israel will not permit the right of return of Palestinian refugees and exiles as sanctioned by international law.
The petition, signed by ethicist Peter Singer, actor Miriam Margolyes, feminist Eva Cox, academic and pioneering gay rights activist Dennis Altman, writer Susan Varga, and others (including the three of us), argues that the Israeli Law of Return is “a form of racist privilege that abets the colonial oppression of the Palestinians … We renounce this ‘right’ to ‘return’ offered to us by Israeli law. It is not right that we may ‘return’ to a state that is not ours while Palestinians are excluded and continuously dispossessed”.
The petition sits within an interesting historical context. In 1961 the famous German Jewish philosopher Martin Buber — who was forced to leave Germany in 1938, went to live in Palestine and was himself a cultural Zionist — wrote to prime minister David Ben-Gurion protesting against the persistent refusal of the Israeli government to accept and implement UN Resolution 194. Buber considered that Israel’s refusal to abide by international humanitarian law brought dishonour upon the Zionist movement and the Israeli state. For many decades Buber had put forward the idea that Palestine should become a bi-national state with equal citizenship for Arabs and Jews.
In the present, Jewish intellectuals such as the American Jewish philosopher Judith Butler, have looked to alternative traditions of critique such as those of Martin Buber to pose against the mainstream Zionist ideals that inspired the coming into existence of Israel as a militantly nationalist and aggressive settler-colonial state.
But while she still admires Buber, in a recent interview for the liberal Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Butler was quoted as saying that we now have to go beyond the notion of bi-nationalism to consider “even multiculturalism. Maybe even a kind of citizenship without regard to religion, race, ethnicity, etc.”
She continues: “It is no longer the question of ‘two peoples’, as Martin Buber put it. There is extraordinary complexity and intermixing among both the Jewish and the Palestinian populations.”
In our view, although we don’t necessarily speak here for our fellow petition-signatories, renunciation of the Israeli Law of Return by Jews in the Diaspora, and Israel’s immediate compliance with a vast array of relevant international law including UN Resolution 194, would be definite steps towards what Judith Butler envisages as “a kind of citizenship without regard to religion, race, ethnicity, etc”. The kind of citizenship, we might note, that is taken for granted as basic to those very same western democracies that have enabled Israel’s rogue status until now.
Antony Loewenstein is a Sydney-based freelance journalist, author and blogger and author of My Israel Question.
John Docker is honorary professor in the History Department, University of Sydney, and is author of The Origins of Violence: Religion, History and Genocide.
Ned Curthoys is a research fellow in the Australian National University and co-editor of Edward Said: the Legacy of a Public Intellectual.
Malcolm X on Zionism – Egyptian Gazette, September 17, 1964
“The Zionist armies that now occupy Palestine claim their ancient Jewish prophets predicted that in the “last days of this world” their own God would raise them up a “messiah” who would lead them to their promised land, and they would set up their own “divine” government in this newly-gained land, this “divine” government would enable them to “rule all other nations with a rod of iron…”
“The modern 20th century weapon of neo-imperialism is “dollarism.” The Zionists have mastered the science of dollarism: the ability to come posing as a friend and benefactor, bearing gifts and all other forms of economic aid and offers of technical assistance. Thus, the power and influence of Zionist Israel in many of the newly “independent” African nations has fast-become even more unshakeable than that of the 18th century European colonialists… and this new kind of Zionist colonialism differs only in form and method, but never in motive or objective….”
“Did the Zionists have the legal or moral right to invade Arab Palestine, uproot its Arab citizens from their homes and seize all Arab property for themselves just based on the “religious” claim that their forefathers lived there thousands of years ago? Only a thousand years ago the Moors lived in Spain. Would this give the Moors of today the legal and moral right to invade the Iberian Peninsula, drive out its Spanish citizens, and then set up a new Moroccan nation … where Spain used to be, as the European zionists have done to our Arab brothers and sisters in Palestine?
In short the Zionist argument to justify Israel’s present occupation of Arab Palestine has no intelligent or legal basis in history … not even in their own religion. Where is their Messiah?
Žižek on Avatar with one comment: Here’s something Slavoj Žižek and I have in common. We’ve both seen Avatar. I was not totally bewitched by it, maybe because balancing a pair of 3-D spec ta cles on top of another set of glasses while sitting two meters from the screen, tilting my head at a 30-degree angle in order to see it, detracted a bit from the visual experience. But still, Avatar was excellent: a sledge hammer of an assault on American corporate imperialism, the exo-skeleton clad high-explosive-wielding security forces a straight for ward proxy for the American Army, engaged in a murderous resource grab. Dud dialog and slightly heavy-handed (the never-to-be-obtained mineral named Unobtanium)? Sure, fine. But the plot’s lack of subtlety wasn’t the point, not amidst its political content, presented alongside stunning visuals: hallucinogeni- cally colorful flora, chunks of mountains phantasmagorically floating in a thick fog, and blooms of shimmering jelly-fish-like spirit-seeds that alight on the protagonist, Jake Sully, blessing him, and eventually anointing him. Their presence prevents the Na’vi—Hebrew for prophet—princess from shooting him dead with a bow and arrow. The Na’vi are humanoid blue creatures living in a pre-lapsarian relationship with their planet, capable of connecting to the biosphere and its fauna through their hair. They link directly to Aywa, the earth-goddess, a direct analog for James Lovelock’s Gaia. “We have nothing they need,” says Jake, bemoaning the inability of the corporate mer can tilists to make an exchange to get the Na’vi out from the tree in which they make their home. Indeed: “You are so stupid!” the Na’vi princess lashes into Sully. Fair enough. They had already destroyed their planet—earth in 2154—and what could be dumber than to destroy your home and render it unlivable?
Can an ecological criticism of corporate imperialism be more powerful than to simultaneously highlight its genetic avaricious ness and its viral nature, destroying the world that birthed it? Žižek did not like Avatar, but perhaps we saw different films. (Perhaps also one of us saw it and the other did not). When he glancingly touches on the film’s theme, he gets it really wrong. He writes that Pandora is “populated by aborigines who live in an incestuous link with nature… (The latter should not be confused with the miserable reality of actual exploited peoples.)” What an “incestuous” link with nature could mean is unclear. Meanwhile “actual” exploited peoples, usually invisible in the Žižekian imaginary, do tend to have more sustain ble consumption and production patterns, if we take per-capita CO2 emissions as any metric. Meanwhile, Žižek’s approach to ecology is habitually poorly considered. Stuffed underneath the gestures to stereotypes about aborigines is a stunning lack of awareness about what kind of planning patterns might truly be sustainable. Small communities living in home- ostatic relation ships withnature? Small is Beautiful? That’s just treacle, and anyway, there’s some posturing to do.
Amidst a bewildering, figure-eight tour, selected stops on Titanic, The Matrix, Dances with Wolves, Reds, and Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Žižek writes, Cameron’s superficial Hollywood Marxism (his crude privileging of the lower classes and caricatural depiction of the cruel egotism of the rich) should not deceive us. Beneath this sympathy for the poor lies a reactionary myth, first fully deployed by Rudyard Kipling’s Captains Courageous. It concerns a young rich person in crisis who gets his (or her) vitality restored through brief intimate contact with the full-blooded life of the poor. What lurks behind the compassion for the poor is their vampiric exploitation. I had not thought to see the day when a major leftist intellectual disparages the best-selling movie of all time for its director’s deployment of insufficiently nuanced Marxist politics. Nor is the movie’s Marxism as “crude” as Žižek would have it. It’s obvious that capitalism rests on a systemic egotistical logic, and radicals tend to think that the lower classes will be the ones to make the revolution — hence, “privileged,” whatever that means.
Avatar’s fidelity to the old formula of creating a couple, its full trust in fantasy, and its story of a white man marrying the aboriginal princess and becoming king, make it ideologically a rather conservative, old-fashioned film. Its technical brilliance serves to cover up this basic conser- vatism. It is easy to discover, beneath the politically correct themes (an honest white guy siding with ecologically sound aborigines against the “military-industrial complex” of the imperialist invaders), an array of brutal racist motifs: a paraplegic outcast from earth is good enough to get the hand of a beautiful local princess, and to help the natives win the decisive battle. The film teaches us that the only choice the aborigi-gines have is to be saved by the human beings or to be destroyed by them. In other words, they can choose either to be the victim of imperialist reality, or to play their allotted role in the white man’s fantasy.
This is weird. There is nothing “con servative” about an audio-visually stunning attack on capitalist mi itarism. Why is the “military-industrial complex” rendered in scare quotes? Inveighing against the prevailing social system usually doesn’t fall under the umbrella of “political cor- rectness,” and the Aymara and Quechua in Bolivia would probably be surprised that their invocations of Pachamama are “political correct- ness.” The Ecuadorian CONAIE would be shocked to find that its denunciations of the Correa government’s policies towards the Yasuni-ITT are belittled as “ecologically sound” aboriginal tendencies.
Anyway, is it really true that “The film teaches us that the only choice the aborigines have is to be saved by the human beings or to be destroyed by them…the victim of imperialist reality” or a “role in the white man’s fantasy”? The people of Bil’in, mas querad ing as Na’vi several weeks ago in a self-conscious and cunning ploy to play to the Western imaginary, aim to save them selves, with, yes, Western solidar- ity activists supporting their efforts. Same with the Dongria Kondh.
Avatar has its issues. It is, in part, a film playing to a colonial mindset—the white man as hero. But the hero in a sci-fi bang-up thriller that viciously attacks a vicious social system in a manner that no one can miss. Moreover, Avatar re-codes typical imperialist memes. It is the natives who have an advanced society, and they who civilize the invader, who can only fight with the invaded, for their land, after becoming one of them. This is not so much against the typical pattern as the creation of a totally new one. Žižek knows his Freud/Lacan et al., and knows too that theoretical pyrotechnics can enliven any argument. Or at least impress other smart people. But he must also know that sometimes a cigar is a cigar, and a main stream critique of corporate imperialism is just that. Give it a rest. 6 Votes Written by Max Ajl March 19, 2010 at 1:39 pm Posted in Activism, Art, Ecology Tagged with avatar, Ecology, theoretical nonsense, Zizek « Yassin
=Citizen’s Arrest of Alleged War Criminal George W. Bush in Canada
Splitting the Sky, indigenous activist, seized by security forces in Canada last year when he attempted to make a citizen’s arrest of George W. Bush will have his day in court on Monday, March 8th. According to Professor Anthony J. Hall, this case will demonstrate whether Canada is ruled by law or fear and highlight the need for new principles, the Calgary Principles to amend the victor’s justice of the Nuremberg Principles, in light of the new impunities for high level crimes against humanity and the Earth in this era, and the need to protect and honor civil resistance to those high crimes.
Dacajaweiah, John Boncore, or Splitting the Sky, is not a man of few words. If you read his hefty 653-page autobiography, it is very clear that he has lived an extraordinary life and has survived more than his share of violence, to find deep within himself a well of energy and spirit enabling him to not only endure hardships, but to serve his people and the land in the timeless struggle against oppression and tyranny. From the Attica Rebellion to Gustafen Lake to Calgary in 2009, when he attempted a citizen’s arrest of George W. Bush, “Dac” has consciously taken a leadership role to politically challenge the powerful forces that dominate the North American continent. Brutally arrested for his action, he earned his “day in court” to voice not only his defense, but “to highlight the hypocrisy and criminality of the Canadian government for allowing Bush into Canada, and to firmly establish the legal defense of ‘civil resistance’, the duty of citizens to act when our governments and their agents are derelict in their duty. This will be very useful in the future to rein these criminals in.”
Prior to Bush’s visit, the Canadian group Lawyers Against the War asked Canadian officials to bar entry or try Bush for his suspected crimes since Canadian Law prohibits “people suspected of any involvement in torture or other war crimes and crimes against humanity from entering Canada for any period and for any purpose. The most recent report of the War Crimes Program affirms the necessity of barring war crimes suspects from Canada: ‘The most effective way to deny safe haven to people involved or complicit in war crimes or crimes against humanity is to prevent them from coming to Canada.’”
Lawyers Against the War and protestors implored the government to do their duty and arrest Bush. “Dac” was carrying papers detailing the evidence against George W. Bush, which he had planned to serve him with on behalf of the victims and the people of the world, and he raised his hands to show that he was “non-violent.” Dac was then thrown down, stomped on, kicked, handcuffed and led off to be brutalized in a Calgary jail.
Monday, March 8, 2010, he will have his opportunity to put forward his case and present evidence, with support, testimony and affidavits on his behalf from respected scholars, including David Ray Griffin, Peter Dale Scott, and Michel Chossudovsky, as well as from former US Congresswoman, outspoken human rights advocate, and former Green Party Presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney. Professor Anthony J. Hall, author of The American Empire and the Fourth World and founding coordinator of Globalization Studies at the University of Lethbridge, stated last December:
“Splitting the Sky’s action in Calgary highlights the abject failure of law enforcement agencies to do their job. It highlights the unwillingness of police and those who direct them to apply the law equitably and independently…
“As the Nuremberg principles make clear, the implicated law enforcement officers cannot claim in their defense that they were merely following orders in deciding to arrest Splitting the Sky rather than George W. Bush.
“I propose that the trial of Splitting the Sky presents a platform for the elaboration of a new set of juridical rules and protocols to be known as The Calgary Principles.
“It has been six decades since the UN general assembly agreed to a succinct refinement of the principles that emerged from the trial of some of the top Nazis, as well as their juridical, medical, and industrialist accomplices. During those decades, there has been an intensification of the culture of impunity that immunizes those at the top of the hierarchy of wealth and power from any legal accountability for their crimes.
“Like the Tokyo trials of the defeated leadership of imperial Japan, the Nuremberg Trials were a classic example of victors’ justice.
“As long as the power politics of victors’ justice continues to protect the likes of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, the rule of law remains a fraud. Under present conditions, the rule of law is a sad hoax designed to disguise the role of law enforcement agencies as protectors of the ill-gotten wealth often stripped from the branches of humanity that Frantz Fanon once labeled ‘the wretched of the earth.’
“The elaboration of the Calgary Principles will have to entail the quest for new language and juridical concepts to capture the full extent and complexity of international crime in the twenty-first century…
“Consider, for instance, the nature of the crime that takes place when whole populations are sentenced to endless futures of disproportionately high rates of genetic deformity through the saturation of their mother lands with depleted uranium. Consider the nature of a crime that would see a drug company covertly introduce a new disease strain in order to market a prepared antidote of vaccine to cure the disease it had disseminated.
“What names, what prohibitions, and what punishments do we need to respond to and discourage crimes that infect populations, deform populations, and even destroy whole ecosystems, making the renewal of all kinds of life, including human life, impossible to sustain?
“Hence it can be said that these days the most important agencies of the military-industrial complex and the national security state are the media conglomerates. These agencies of propaganda for an aggressive war bombard us on a daily basis with mental missiles of psychological warfare.
“The constant barrage of messages we receive that peace is to be found in war, that freedom is to be found in slavery, that wealth is to be found in indebtedness, and that truth is to be found in lies, is pulling humanity away from our fragile inheritance of reason, rationality, and enlightened discourse on the real menaces we face…”
Splitting the Sky’s action mirrors the actions of countless people in countless demonstrations that are taking place across the world where lives, land, forests, lakes, jobs, homes, species, and communities are threatened by powerful forces, making decisions in luxury and comfort, protected by men with guns from citizens trying to make their voices heard to protect that which they love and care deeply about. The trial will illustrate whether or not Canada is ruled by laws or by fear. Whatever happens, the struggle for truth, justice, and peace will continue.
For Anthony J. Hall’s entire article and speech, see http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=16377 .
More details about Splitting the Sky are posted at http://www.splittingthesky.net/
Splitting the Sky and Anthony J. Hall will be on the new weekly radio show, Community Currency, hosted by local activist, Carol Brouillet Thursday, March 11, 2010, 2 pm – 3 pm PST, on the Progressive Radio Network (http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com)