Monday, February 04, 2008

What's Cookin' in the "Global South"


In Knave's Gambit, I excerpted bits of Bobby Fischer's 9/11 Bombo Radyo interview to explore the irony of his being considered crazy for making statements you often hear from far-Leftists, albeit usually in less profane form. One example was Fischer's belief that the Jews were leading the world to its destruction like a steer by its nose ring. He said:

That's the big danger, that the Jews, that this lunatic people, are gonna take us all with them. But I'm hoping, as I say, for a Seven Days in May scenario, where [unintelligible] sane people will take over the US now.

I chose Jose Saramago's 2002 El Pais piece about the warlike racism inherent in Judaism as the "sane" Leftist's echo of Fischer. I could have cited a closer and much more current example. On January 7, Arun Gandhi, the grandson of Mahatma Ghandi and President and co-founder of the M.K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence, reminded readers of On Faith, a joint-venture blog between the Washington Post and Newsweek, that "Jewish Identity Can't Depend on Violence":

Jewish identity in the past has been locked into the holocaust experience -- a German burden that the Jews have not been able to shed. It is a very good example of a community can overplay a historic experience to the point that it begins to repulse friends. The holocaust was the result of the warped mind of an individual who was able to influence his followers into doing something dreadful. But, it seems to me the Jews today not only want the Germans to feel guilty but the whole world must regret what happened to the Jews. The world did feel sorry for the episode but when an individual or a nation refuses to forgive and move on the regret turns into anger.

The Jewish identity in the future appears bleak. Any nation that remains anchored to the past is unable to move ahead and, especially a nation that believes its survival can only be ensured by weapons and bombs...

Apparently, in the modern world, so determined to live by the bomb, this is an alien concept. You don't befriend anyone, you dominate them. We have created a culture of violence (Israel and the Jews are the biggest players) and that Culture of Violence is eventually going to destroy humanity.

Mostly I'll leave it at that, but I do want to say that Arun Gandhi's comments are drearily predictable, coming as they are from a herald of Third World liberation. Israel and Jew-hatred are a powerful engine of revolutionary politics in the "Global South", as they are everywhere. Desmond Tutu, for instance, has been saying stuff like this for years.

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