Category Archives: Ireland

Identity Politics or Tribalism Was Behind Many of the Most Horrific and Genocidal Crimes of the 20th Century

Zamfir: “Having a collective interest is not the same thing as a hard and fast identity like race, ethnic group, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, or even religion.”

Okay, I didn’t understand that “identity” for you has to do with only these kinds of characteristics. But then I’d put it this way: Any group of people that share collective interests can have good reasons to organize politically in defense of their interests. It doesn’t matter whether the reason has to do with their “identity” in your sense or instead something less “hard and fast” such as economic class.

Because people who organize around more banal everyday political issues are typically not as insane and flat out deranged, homicidal, paranoid, hypersensitive and even genocidal as IP types? I mean do you see Democrats running around screaming about the Republicans “They hate us! They hate us! They’re out to kill us! We need to fight back!” Do you see environmentalists or pro-abortion people saying that anti-environmentalists and anti-abortion people, “They hate us! They hate us! They oppress us and dominate us! They’re out to kill us!”

Ordinary politics is not tribal like IP is. Few people would say they are member of a tribe called Democrats, Social Democrats, Bolivarians, Sandinistas, environmentalists, gun control activists, anti-free trade types, anti- or pro-immigration activists, liberals, workers, or poor or low income people? Hell no.

And the people in the paragraph above don’t scream, carry on, act paranoid, have a huge chip on their shoulder and accuse everyone of hating them all the time.

Haven’t you noticed that IP people are all insane? They all say my group is completely innocent and good, and we are being persecuted, oppressed and dominated by this evil other group. They’re all hypersensitive to any slights, always accusing everyone of hating them. They hate us! They hate us! They hate us! They’re trying to kill us!

And there’s often genocidal language, sometimes towards the hated group and other times it’s, “They’re trying to kill of us!” Often it’s “they’re trying to kill all of us…we need to kill all of them!”Haven’t you noticed that IP people are all insane?

They all say my group is completely innocent and good and we are being persecuted, oppressed and dominated by this evil other group. They’re all hypersensitive to any slights, always accusing everyone of hating them. They hate us! They hate us! They hate us! They’re trying to kill us! And there’s often genocidal language, sometimes towards the hated group and other times it’s, “They’re trying to kill of us!” Often it’s “they’re trying to kill all of us…we need to kill all of them!”

Before the Tutus slaughtered 800,000 Tutsis, the radio played non-stop that the Tutsis had just murdered the Hutu president and were organizing a war to kill all the Hutus. The solution? Kill them first. Remember Hitler said the Jews are trying to kill us all? Solution? Kill them first. Notice how the Israelis are always screaming that their enemies are exterminationist Nazi type anti-Semites? They’re out to kill us all! Solution? Oppress them, dominate them, wage war on them, kill their soldiers and their politicians, assassinate their leaders.

Can’t you realize that almost all of the horrible things that are going on today are all based on IP to some degree or another. In the ME, they are slaughtering each other over religion or even factions of a religion or even factions of factions.

In Turkey, this is behind Turkey’s war on the Kurds and their conquest and annexation of Syrian land to expand the “Turkish nation.” The ethnic cleaning wars of the Balkans were all wrapped up in IP. The Islamist insurgencies in the Caucasus, Turkestan, Thailand, Sudan, East Timor, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Egypt, Nigeria, India and to some extent Syria and Iraq are Islamist jihads against the infidels; in the cases of Nigeria and Sudan, take exterminationist proportions.
The Hindu Buddhists wage an exterminationist jihad against the Hindu Tamils. The Myanmar Buddhists wage an exterminationist jihad against the Rohinga.

The Hindus oppress the Muslims of Kashmir and wage war on them. The Jews oppress the non-Jews of Palestine and wage war on them and conquer and annex their land. Muslims and Christians wage exterminationist wars against each other in the Congo. In Rwanda, Burundi and Zaire, Hutus, and Tutsis wage exterminationist wars against each other.

Saddam said the Persians were plotting to kill all the Arabs (and most Sunni Arabs still say that the Iranians are plotting to at least conquer all the Arabs). Solution? Kill the Iranians first. The Young Turks started their jihad against the Armenians by saying that the Armenians were plotting to kill all the Turks. Solution? Kill the Armenians. Similar things were said of Greeks and Assyrians. Solution? Kill 500,000 Greeks and Assyrians before they can kill us first.

Nazism was nothing but Aryan Germanic IP against non Aryans such as Gypsies, Jews and Slavs.

The war in Northern Ireland is a pure IP war.

Notice how all of these groups employ the IP extremism – “They’re trying to kill us all so we need to oppress/kill of them first!” Our tribe is 100% good, theirs is evil. We are defensive; they wage offensive war against us. They are haters and racists and we are not. They hate us!  They hate us! They hate us! You hate us! You hate us!

Notice how paranoid they all are and how hypersensitive they are to any slight and how they all immediately accuse you of hating them if you even look at them wrong? Notice the insane, “They hate us! They hate us!” all the while when the people screaming about people hating them are horrific haters themselves. But their hate and racism/bigotry is good and justified and the other people’s hate and bigotry is evil. We just want liberation and to be free! They want to oppress us and dominate us!

IP turns genocidal and exterminationist or at least slaughtering quite easily.

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Why Do Some Countries Lack a Class Conscious Working Class?

John Engelman: Contrary to what Karl Marx said, for most people most of the time loyalties of nation, race and ethnicity are stronger than loyalties of class. The working class in the United States has always been more diverse than the working class in European countries. It is becoming more diverse with the influx of non whites.

To get class consciousness you really need a homogeneous working class. It helps if the working class is ethnically distinct from the upper class. In Scotland the upper class is English, or Anglicized Scottish. That is to say Scottish, but educated in England, and often speaking with English accents.

The clear majority of Scots vote for the British Labour Party. English workers are more likely to vote for the British Conservative Party.

The argument is circular in a sense because as you look around the world, generally what you see in most cases is an ethnically homogenous working class.

Would you describe the working classes of Latin America as homogeneous or diverse? They seem to be a mixture of White, Indian and Black and the mestizo, mulatto and Zambo mixtures, correct? Yet the diverse working classes down there have high working class consciousness despite their diverse nature.

Aren’t North African and Gulf countries fairly mixed between Blacks and Arabs?

Certainly in Arabia, lands with diverse working classes of Kurds, Arabs and Iranian working classes are all very left.

I believe Sri Lanka even with the vicious Tamil versus Sinhalese war, the diverse working class is leftwing. In Burma the working class is very left although there have been wild ethnic wars sputtering on for decades.

In Russia and other nations of the former USSR, there are many ethnic minorities, but the workers are still working class.

A recent exception is Ukraine where workers have gone radical Right. The former Yugoslavia is still very leftwing even after all of the ethnic conflict and even slaughter of past years. Spain’s working class is very radical despite an armed conflict in the Basque region and separatists in Catalonia. The different religions hate each other in North Ireland, but the Scottish Protestant workers are as class conscious as the Irish Catholic ones. Switzerland is divided between three ethnic groups – French, Germans, and Italians – yet it is a very leftwing country.

The extreme tribalism in Africa has not prevented the working classes from being class conscious.

Is the working class of England voting Tory yet? Or do you just mean that they are more likely to vote Tory than the Scots are?

Most workers in Europe, Arabia, North Africa, Africa, the former USSR, China, Southeast Asia, Central Asia, Japan, South Korea, Nepal are the same ethnicity as the ruling classes of those places, yet workers have a high degree of class consciousness in all of those places.

The places where working class consciousness has been harder to develop were those that had a Chinese ruling class as in Philippines and Indonesia.

I think we need to come up with some better theories about the poor class consciousness of the US working class. If you are looking for examples elsewhere, India, the Philippines, Indonesia, Taiwan, Australia, the Baltics and Colombia are places with quite poor working class consciousness.

In Australia it is recent as US style conservatism is imported.

A similar trend is underway in Canada and has been since Thatcher in the UK. But the UK is in nearly a revolutionary situation. A lot of the working classes are militant and radicalized, while a lot of the country has at the same time gone Tory. When Thatcher died, there were anti-rich riots in housing estates across the land. Thatcher was burned in effigy in the streets. Can you imagine that happening in the US?

The recent riots in the UK also had a class undercurrent. I was dating a British woman at the time, and she told me that local storeowners who treated the community well were spared by rioters. Rioters focused on stores selling upscale goods to the rich. Many corporate outlets were also smashed.

She told me that a number of those outlets had a reputation for not paying taxes to the UK by hiding money offshore. She said the rioters knew who those companies were, and they were brutally singled out. Many outlets were burned to the ground. Can you imagine heavily Black rioters in the US having class consciousness like that?

The Baltics are a case of entire nations full of complete idiots who hate Communism so much that they went into an extreme overreaction against Communism and turned against anything socialist, left, liberal or mildly progressive. Fascist heroes including many Nazis with a lot of Jewish blood on their hands were celebrated. Communist parties were outlawed, and Russian minorities were viciously maltreated.

Radical rightwingers were elected in all of these lands, and Chicago Boys Friedmanite experiments were undertaken. The results were predictable. In the recent economic crash, the most neoliberal European countries were the most devastated of all. Estonia was eviscerated, and Latvia was almost wiped off the map. 1/3 of the Latvian population left the country, including almost all of the educated people.

The Philippines and Indonesian cases are up for discussion, but these are Latin American situations of a ruling class of a different ethnicity than the working classes holding forth brutally and anti-democratically over the people. In addition, the workers have little consciousness.

Taiwan has a similar legacy where extreme hatred of Communism resulted in being ruled by reactionary fascist anti-Communists for decades. There is a nascent Left now, but it has little power yet. The wealth of the country seems to have gotten in the way of working class consciousness. Probably the extreme anti-Communism helped too, as any working class movement could be quickly portrayed as Communist.

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Catholic Communism: The Story of the Catholic Left in Europe

The link between Catholicism and the Left has been ongoing for some time now. In Eastern Europe, especially in Czechoslovakia, Catholic Communists were common enough to form an actual movement. Obviously there were Catholic Communists in Spain and particularly in the Basque Country. The ETA was virtually a Catholic Communist revolutionary movement. The armed Left, especially the Communists, started killing priests in the Spanish Civil War. Although burning churches has been an odd tradition in Spain for a good century now, the actual killing of priests did not go over well. Of course the same could be said of the great IRA in Ireland, most of whom were Catholics.

In Poland, Ukraine and Lithuania, unfortunately, the Catholics were virulently anti-Communist for whatever reason. The Communists under Stalin brutally repressed the church, killing many priests and lay workers. In Poland and Ukraine, Catholicism got wrapped up in an anti-Communism in a horrible way. One of the main beefs against Communism particularly in Poland was that the Communists were not only anti-nationalists but mostly that they were anti-Catholic. At any rate, Catholicism and nationalism are so wrapped together in Poland that one can hardly see where one ends and the other begins.

Nevertheless, most of the virulent Polish nationalist Catholic anti-Communist were committed socialists. However, many of these folks who were often also anti-Semites as these Poles linked Communism with Jews. Anti-Semitism in Poland is as old as dirt. Yitzhak Rabin once noted that Poles learn their anti-Semitism at their mother’s breast – it’s that deeply rooted in the culture. There was a nationalist rally in Poland recently that drew a huge crowd of 50,000. One of the things that they demanded was a Judenfrei Poland. The problem is that there are probably no more than 4,000 Jews in Poland to this day. One wonders what evil effects such a tiny community could have on the national body politic, yet this shows you the intensity and paranoia of Polish antisemitism.

In Eastern Europe, there is a big difference between a socialist and a Communist. Almost everyone you meet in Eastern Europe is a socialist or practically one, although Poland is particularly pathetic in this regard, a sorry habit in light of the centuries of abuse the reactionary feudal lords committed against the 95% serf Poles for centuries. The Polish ruling class is still feudal in nature and has changed little since the days of the lords of the land. It also has deep ties to a deeply conservative Polish army, which has always had strong links to the feudal royal ruling classes.

It is a little told story, but when Communism first came to Poland, it was quite popular, particularly among the downtrodden peasants. It was also very popular among the urban proletariat and to some extent among intellectuals. But the brutality of the Polish Communists working in the model of Stalin quickly doomed the project. The Polish Communists were hoist on their own petard. Even Stalin recognized the futility of the project. “Imposing Communism on the Poles,” Stalin said, “Was like trying to put a saddle on a cow.” Basically doomed from Day one.

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No Conservatives Allowed on This Website!

We have had a few conservatives posting here in the past few days. These are US-style conservatives, which are the worst kind of all. US-style conservatives are absolutely banned from posting here in any way, shape or form.

Conservatism means different things in different countries, so conservatives from much of the rest of the world (except Latin America and the UK) can continue to post. Even Canadian conservatives can continue to post, as I do not mind them. It’s not conservatism itself that is so awful. Almost every country on Earth has people who call themselves conservatives, and there are conservative parties in almost every country on Earth. But being a conservative just about anywhere outside of the Americas is more or less an acceptable position for me. I probably won’t like their politics much, but I could at least look at them and say that this is an opposition I could live with.

US conservatives and their brethren in the UK, Latin America, the Philippines, Nepal and and Indonesia are quite a different beast.

I have to think hard about conservatives in Eastern Europe, especially Estonia, Latvia and the Czech Republic. These fools had such a bad experience with Communism that they went 180 degrees in the other direction. I would have to see the positions of these conservative parties in those countries to see whether they would be OK or not.

Just to give you an example, Vladimir Putin is considered to be a right-winger, and his party United Russia advocates a politics called Russian Conservatism. Looking at the party’s platform, this is not only a conservatism that I could live with but one I might even vote for!

Conservatives in South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia, and most other places in Asia are acceptable. The conservatives in the Stans, Georgia, Ukraine, and Armenia can be rather awful, particularly in the nationalist sense, but I will not ban them.

I dislike Indian conservatives, but I will not ban them.

Conservatives from the Muslim World are all acceptable. In the Muslim World, conservatism just means religious and sometimes nationalist. I can live with that. Even the ones in Iran are orders of magnitude better than the US type.

Conservatives in the Arab World are acceptable. They are mostly just religious people.

Turkish conservatives are awful, but I will not ban them. They are just religious and a particularly awful type of nationalist.

African conservatives are OK.

Conservatives in Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal, Germany,  the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Italy, Switzerland, Italy, the Balkans, Bulgaria, Greece, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, and Romania are sometimes good, sometimes pretty bad, but they are all acceptable here. Conservatism in Europe mostly means nationalism. I am actually rather fond of the conservative running Hungary, Orban. LePen conservatives leave something to be desired, but they are acceptable. They’re mostly just nationalists. Hell, I might even vote for Marine LePen! If it was down to LePen versus Macron, I would absolutely support LePen!

Conservatives from Indonesia, Nepal and Philippines are not OK. These are an “everything for the rich elite, nothing for anybody else” type of conservative. Some of them even hide under the labels of Socialist or even Communist.

The word conservative has no real inherent meaning. It means whatever people say it means.

Anyway, the conservatives in the US are pure garbage and recently they have become out and out fascists after moving in that direction for a long time. And a particularly horrible type of fascist at that, a Latin American/Filipino/Indonesian style fascist. I will not allow any US conservatives to post on this board. You all are lucky I even let you lurk here. That’s an idle threat as I can’t ban lurkers, but if they all stopped lurking, I would not mind frankly.

You all really ought to go back to the gutters you crawled out of.

PS This especially applies to Libertarians, the very worst of all the US conservative vermin. We shoot Libertarians on sight here, so you better watch out.

*This applies only to economic conservatives. If you are not an economic conservative, and your conservatism is only of the social variety or you are only conservative on race, religion, guns, law and order, respect for tradition, American nationalism, the military, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity issues, you can stay. I’m not crazy about some social conservatives, but I can live with them. I will probably even let patriotards post as long as they are not economic conservatives.

I am an American nationalist myself. I just don’t like patriotards. Of course, I very much dislike and even hate the country as it is right now, but I sure don’t want to make it worse! I have to live here too you now, and it might as well be as pleasant as possible as long I stay here.

I want what’s best for my country. I don’t want to harm this country or screw it over. That will be bad for me! And believe it or not, most US patriotards do not want what is best for the country! I have dreams of a greater and better America. It’s not impossible, but we will have to undergo some serious cultural changes. One of the reasons I am so against illegal immigration is because it is ruining my country and making this place even worse. Also illegal immigration is terrible for US workers and I am for the workers. I am against H-1B visas for the same reason – they are wrecking my country. IT workers are workers too, so they are my comrades. I want what is best for America and American workers.

I cannot live with economic conservatives. I like cancer way more than I like US conservatives. Cancer is much more decent and respectable.

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What Was the Worst Cultural Genocide Ever?

How about the Romanization of the Celtic World?

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Yes, all of that land was formerly controlled by the Celts. Even Southwest Poland was Celtic. There is an endangered language spoken there called Silesian that has at its very base a Celtic layer which is the oldest layer of this Slavic language. The French language was Celtic Gaulish, the influence of which can still be seen in the odd French phonology. I do not think there is much Celtic left in the Iberian languages, but I could be wrong on that. Surely there is little or no Celtic left in Turkish. One wonders about Celtic traces in Dutch, German and the rest of Slavic.

In our modern era, Celtic languages only (barely) survive in Ireland (Irish), Scotland (Scottish Gaelic), Wales (Welsh), the Isle of Man (Manx) and Cornwall (Cornish) in England, and Brittany (Breton) in France. In Eastern Europe, Celts were supplanted by Germanic, Iranian and Slavic tribes. In France, Iberia and the Balkans, the Celts were assimilated to the Roman Empire.

It is not particularly difficult to convert a native elite to the language of a conqueror, but converting an entire population to a new language in a short period of time is quite a feat. The Romans did this mostly by showing the superiority of the Latin language and convincing the natives to give up their Celtic words.

In fact, the Romanization of Dacia where the original Celtic speaking people were completely converted to Latin which then turned into Romanian is cited by Wikipedia as one of the worst cultural genocides ever.

Of course there are many other examples of cultural genocide, some of them ongoing.

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Linguistic/National Question

In what countries is the language spoken in the capital different from the language spoken by the majority of people in the rest of the country? As you can see, there is more than one country where this is the case.

Some cases from the past include

Austria-Hungary, where the capital Vienna spoke High German but most of the people spoke Czech, Slovak, Venetian, Slovenian, or Serbo-Croatian.

In Ireland, before English became popular in the early 1800’s, most people around the capital spoke English, while the majority of the population spoke Irish.

I found nine countries, two in Europe, two in Southeast Asia, two in South Asia, one in Oceania, one in the Caribbean, and one in Africa.

Hop to it!

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French Civil War: The Counteroffensive

Here.

From January 8-13, there were 21 shooting and grenade attacks against Muslim buildings in France. That means three shooting or grenade attacks a day. Three attacks a day is what a lot of low grade insurgencies around the world carry out. There were also 33 cases of threats and insults, not that that matters.

What this is starting to look like is the insurgency in Palestine. There are regular low-grade attacks in the West Bank, often rock or Molotov cocktail attacks on Jews or Jewish motorists. Now and again there are some shooting attacks. There are knife, shooting or car (driving them into pedestrians) attacks inside Israel on a fairly regular basis. An argument has been made that there is no civil war in France because most of the attackers are lone wolves, but a lot of the shooting and knife attacks on Jews in Israel, especially Jerusalem, are also by lone wolves. If there’s no insurgency in France, then there’s none in Palestine either.

The two men shot dead in Belgium were fully armed and part of a large network. They had extensive plans for a huge attacks on mostly police and Jewish targets. Like the Charlie Hebdo attackers, they were dressed in all black. As you can see, they are even starting to wear uniforms now. Attackers are regularly armed to the teeth with military grade weaponry, bulletproof vests, support teams on the ground and fighters have high-grade military training.

All of this resembles the IRA insurgency in the north of Ireland (there is no such thing as “Northern Ireland” – there is only Ireland and the north of Ireland).

Massive sweeps of possible terrorists were made all over France and Belgium, and 700 possible terrorists were rounded up. Such huge roundups of possible terrorists are only made in nations experiencing some sort of insurgency.

As you can see above, the other side is armed too (sort of a paramilitary outside the state as with the Protestant paras in the north of Ireland), and they seem to be armed with military grade weapons, a good support network and possibly good training. How else did they pull off 21 attacks in seven days without being taken down completely?

France has now put in a crazy new law called “apology for terrorism.” Such laws are only passed in nations experiencing an insurgency. Peru had a similar law during the war against the Shining Path. Even anti-Sendero author Gustavo Gorritti was arrested under this crazy law. The legal attorneys for Senderistas, doing 100% legal work, were regularly arrested and tried as terrorists, though there was no evidence for this other than their representing anti-government guerrillas during a civil war. A number of them were imprisoned and some were tortured to death by the “Peruvian democracy.”

I have never liked these insane laws as they seem to be vague and against the very principles of freedom of speech that France hypocritically claims to be defending. I guess France believes in freedom of speech, sure, freedom of some speech – speech that supports the position of the French state.

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Does Radical Capitalism Work Anywhere?

Capitalist Caucasian wrote:

Whites thrive under capitalism. Asians thrive under both, and blacks cannot thrive on any economic system, but totalitarian, authoritarian communism does the job of not letting a black society burn to shit. Like black Muslims, for example. Or the fact that some of the smartest, well behaved nigs are Nation of Islam members.

Not really true. Look at the 19th Century White world in the beginnings of industrialization and tell me things were thriving. Or the Potato Famine. Look at how the gangster capitalists have looted the Ukraine since 1991. Latvia went radical free market and the economy collapsed worse than the Depression and all that remains is a hollowed out shell. Estonia lies in ruins. Greece and maybe Ireland are disaster areas.

Europe was feudal until WW1, and Eastern Europe was feudal until WW2. The life expectancy in capitalist Albania in 1949 was 32 years. With the return to capitalism in Russia, there was an economic crash three times worse than the Great Depression, life expectancy collapsed, gangsters inside and outside the country stripped the place bare, and 15 million people died, more than Stalin killed.

Radical capitalists came to power in Chile and Argentina, two White countries, ran the economies into the ground and murdered 15,000 people in Chile and 30,000 in Argentina.

Capitalists caused all of these messes.

Whites don’t do so great under radical capitalism either. Nobody does. The thriving White world you are talking about is mostly not run by Libertarian neoclassical free marketeers. Most of those countries are run by social democrats who call themselves socialists and are members of the Socialist International.

Asians do well under well under capitalism? In 1949, China was ruined by war and warlords, the nation was under feudal rule, and life expectancy was 32 years.

Not sure which Asians you are talking about? Filipinos and Indonesians do not seem to be doing well under radical capitalism. The only real hardcore free market Asian states are Hong Kong and Singapore. All the rest are either socialist to some degree or becoming that way.

Blacks do pretty well under both Islam and Communism. At the very least, the resulting societies are orderly, well-behaved, calm and have little crime and chaos. Sometimes I think Black people need the “stern father” approach.

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Greece Just Defaulted on Its Debt

On May 9.

I don’t understand why the corporate media is not covering this because it’s huge news. If you own Greek bonds, bottom line is you ain’t gonna get paid back. You’re left holding the bag, and a lot of these folks are going to have to eat a Hell of a lot of money.

Excellent news! I have said for a long time now that this is the only solution. The alternatives is decades of debt bondage, radical reductions in wages, benefits and living standards, the actual selling off of Greek national territory (there were discussions of selling some Greek islands to the banksters). Austerity doesn’t work. All it does is prolong recessions and depressions. Why is austerity proposed as any kind of remedy for anything when a state is in recession or depression. It doesn’t help a single thing. All it does is make everything that much worse.

The only possible reason that austerity is advocated during recessions and depressions is as a weapon of class war. The upper classes see the recession or depression as a perfect chance to wage class war on the classes below them. They can shrink the state, reduce benefits and wages and dramatically reduce the standards of living for the bottom 80% of the population. And where does the money the 80% lost go? It goes to the banksters and the rich, to the 1%.

As we can see with the demands of the Greeks to sell off their islands, it’s no longer necessary to invade countries in order to conquer territory. Now the rich can conquer territory via usury, without even firing a shot. So today’s rich are like the imperial conquerors of times past. Our most recent example was the fascists of World War 2. Today’s rich mimic the Axis Powers as they try to annex foreign lands via usury.

However the downside to the Greek default is serious. The money is owed to French and German banks which are undercapitalized, probably illegally, as it is. They are too big to fail, as the saying goes, and they will need to be bailed in some Euro version of TARP. After which there will probably be a credit crunch.

And Portugal and Ireland are surely waiting in the wings. One wonders how much longer they can hold out, especially with the enticing example of Greece in front of them. I predict Portugal will be next, and I am quite sure they will default. There’s really nothing else for them to do.

Just a few days ago, Greece held elections. The pro-austerity parties got trounced in a drubbing of historic dimensions. I will have more to write on that later.

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“Libya – Setback for Anti-Imperialist Struggle,” by Peter Tobin

Peter Tobin is a sometime contributor to this site. Unlike me, Peter is a real Communist through and through. Right now, he is in Nepal working with the Maoists there, spending much of his time at party headquarters. There is a lot going on there right now, but I have not been writing about it much.

Unlike Peter, I’m just a socialist. As Communists are part of the wide spectrum of the Left, we more or less support them, but we also support the rest of the Left too, all the way to social democracy and even US-style liberalism. I figure we are all one big happy family.

LIBYA – SETBACK FOR ANTI-IMPERIALIST STRUGGLE

Gaddafi, lynched like Saddam Hussein, whatever his twists and turns of the last ten years, redeemed himself at the end, by dying fighting imperialism. The record shows that over the 42 years of his regime, he used Libya’s oil wealth against Western Imperialism, led by the US and its local military outpost – the white Zionist colony, Israel.

He utilized ‘terrorist’ methods that Arab militants found was the only military avenue of resistance open to them, a position that no Communist would criticize; it is for oppressed people to choose their way of struggle, according to their circumstances.

Therefore Gaddafi’s Libya bank-rolled many Palestinian resistance groups, and for decades was the most militant Arab leader on the Palestinian question, among Saudi Arabian lip-servers, Jordanian vacillators, or outright Egyptian traitors like Sadat and Mubarak after him.
He also came to see the African dimension, and uniquely for an Arab leader substantially funded the Organization of African Unity (OAU); an act of solidarity with the peoples of sub-Saharan Africa, a recognition that their sufferings under Western imperialism were no different from those of the Arab masses – genocide, dispossession, theft of natural resources and brutal colonial or neo-colonial rule.

Gaddafi was also a strong financial and political supporter of the African National Congress (ANC) when the West labeled it a ‘Communist terror’ group. The fact that the first person Mandela visited outside South Africa was Gaddafi shows the depth of his, and the ANC’s, gratitude. He will be mourned there as a mark of their continuing respect.

ROMANTIC & RUTHLESS NATIONALIST

Gaddafi’s attempt, as a devout Muslim, to counter the cultural imperialism of the West led to a radical interpretation of the Koran, which saw the ‘Ummah” (the body of the striving faithful) as the Arab masses desiring/requiring socialism. Hence the ‘Jamayriah,’ proposed in the ‘Green Book’ – an Islamist parody, a riposte and rival to Mao’s ‘Little Red Book’ and ‘Red Revolution.’

He furthermore thought, until the millennium, at least, that he could build ‘Green socialism in one country,’ staving off imperialist designs on Libya’s oil wealth and the deadly enmity of all the pro-Western Arab regimes, led by Wahhabi Saudi Arabia. His state tried to mobilize the masses through popular devolving committees. However, he had no formal role within the power structure, acting as a last ‘adviser/guru’ issues and policy.

RESISTANCE HOME & ABROAD

Libyan society, with a population of around 4 million, has not moved very far beyond four major ethnic groups into a cohesive voluntary civil society. It never was a nation, but always a collection of disputatious tribes, unified by Islam, if little else.

Hence, it was easily overcome by the modern industrial Italian state, looking for its ‘place in the sun,’ building an overseas empire with a series of incursions into Libya and subsequently Abyssinia, and in the former achieving imperial status in 1934. (Like clan Ireland fell to Strongbow & Henry II in 1169/71, and Native Americans fell to the white European colonizers on the North-American continent.)

The urban centres, mainly Benghazi and Tripoli, have a substantial free-market private sector with bourgeois and petit-bourgeois strata swollen by subsidies from oil revenues, and a largely Western educated, professional, media and technological elite, many of whom are culturally and ideologically hegemonized by bourgeois ideas, mores, and values.

This class has been prominent in all imperialist backed populist movements of the last few years – Ukraine, Lebanon, Iran, Burma, to list a few. They hang their hats on the ‘Human Rights’ and ‘Democracy’ banners against media demonised, ‘authentic’ villains , straight from Holly/Bollywood central casting.

Well – Gaddafi, in this gallery of Western ‘baddies’ was the baddest of them all! When Bin Laden was still wondering which of his father’s wives was his mother, Muhammar was Number One hate figure in Western media circles.

ECCENTRICITIES & ENTHUSIASMS

Take his relations with UK governments; he became convinced in the 1980’s that the Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA) was fighting a struggle of national liberation against British imperialism in the six counties of Ulster, one that reignited in 1969. I don’t intend to go into the pros and cons of this issue here, but the result was Libya that provided the PIRA with guns and most importantly, the new advanced Czech, plastic dynamite – Semtex.

This was a key factor in keeping the war going for another decade. PIRA did not bomb the million Protestants, loyal to Britain, into a republic, but they did bomb them to the negotiating table, as was graphically demonstrated by the effect of the campaign launched against the British homeland; the biggest attack devastating the entire square mile of London’s financial centre and seriously shaking the morale of the British Establishment.

Adams and Morrison would not be sitting on the Northern Ireland Executive were it not for his decisive, practical assistance, and the Provisional Sein Fein, both political and military wings, are also in his debt and owe his family condolences.

Another example – a tiny Trotskyite sect – the Workers Revolutionary Party (WRP) convinced Gaddafi that it was the authentic voice of the British Revolution, and seizure of state power was certain within a few years. All that was needed was a propaganda machine to convey ‘Bolshevik-Leninist-Trotskyist truth’ to the awaiting proletarian masses, eager to get on with the revolution by sweeping away their existing ‘reformist,’ ‘Stalinist’ leadership!

Gaddafi gave these buffoons millions, enabling them to produce a glossy daily newspaper, Newsline, something the entire British left wing movement, vastly outnumbering this semi-religious playgroup, could only match with the CPGB’s revisionist, economist, humanist, peacenik, plodding ‘Morning Star’, itself topped up by Moscow money in all events.

I cite these to show the weakness of charismatic leader systems – individuals who can act impulsively, emotionally, quixotically, often misguidedly and with impunity.

BONAPARTISM IN ARAB SOCIETIES

Certainly the cult of personality plays a progressive role in certain situations, the cult around Gaddafi, that caused him to become such a hate-figure in Western ruling, and thence through to popular circles, was because he stood up to the Americans/Zionists in Palestine, their stooges in the Arab League, and the West via OPEC to secure better prices for oil producers.

When you are so reviled by the Evil Empires of the West, then you must be doing something right?

But the truth is that the steam ran out of his ‘Green Revolution’ years ago, a national identity was never truly forged, with rural remaining tribal, and urban compromised by the developed world’s bourgeois culture – ‘psychologically colonized’ – as Franz Fanon, the formidable Algerian Marxist, put it, an ideological comprador class.

This class encompasses those successfully duped into believing that Western bourgeois democracy and capitalism express universal human values, demonstrating such a circle of perfection, as to constitute, in the words of the right-wing American ideologue, Fukuyama, parodying Hegel, the ‘end of history’.

Whereas Communists argue that Western, specifically Anglo-Saxon, global command, is a purely transitory, historical contingency, a stage like feudalism to be transcended, as Mao said, in the dialectical ‘action and reaction’ that has marked human society from pre-history.

Make no mistake, from General Ataturk, (four years after he kicked the bejasus out of the British ANZAC Dardanelles invasion) and the Young Turk movement, establishing modern, secular Turkey in 1919 out of the ruins of the Ottoman Empire, to the Baathist secular socialist message of Aflaq in Syria, to the great Colonel Nasser, and also to the comparatively long-lived Baathist-type regimes of Syria, Algeria and Iraq – all were genuine anti-imperialists, who achieved much for their societies.

Syria is ‘last man standing’ and the next immediate target for the imperialists and Zionists. Where it not for these regimes, the Palestinian cause would have been completely lost, and Lebanon would have been Balkanized. That is why they have incurred the enmity of the American-led West; it is simply a question of settling geopolitical accounts hiding behind the flag of ‘Human Rights’ – ‘Liberty’ – ‘Freedom’ and ‘democracy’.

But, as with charismatic systems, military ones, however progressive, have limitations, as there is ultimately no authority, institutional or popular, to which they are answerable. The reason it occurred in the Arab world was because the army was the only modern institution in society, equipped, not only with access to superior killing equipment, but with modern linguistic, cultural and political influences.

From Lenin’s support for Ataturk, against the imperialist 1919 Versailles carve-up of the Middle East, Communists have supported these progressive anti-imperialist struggles, while recognizing the limitations outlined above, and their often explicit anti-Communism. The fact is these regimes have faded and crumbled, under the pressure from growing Western economic and military post-1945 superiority.

They have, and are, being picked off one-by-one. Gaddafi is just the latest, demonstrating that these forces can no longer carry forward the struggle against imperialism – the dog has barked, but the caravan has moved on. In this century, only revolutionary Communism can successfully challenge imperialism, because it is the only polity and ideology that recognizes the primacy of the people and unleashes their historical potential.

Like Baathism, of which he is a Islamist mutation, the road ran out for Gaddafi; his desperate attempts to make peace with Western imperialists, get rid of his ‘Weapons of Mass Destruction,’ accept responsibility for Lockerbie, etc and avoid Saddam’s fate, have come to naught.

That’s the flexibility of the bourgeois democratic system – one day Tony Blair will come and hug you, another day one of his replacements will come and kill you (and your children – for good measure).

His Libya, like Saddam’s Iraq, was trashed and bombed, only the lies and the military modalities were different – against the former – to save the world from ‘Weapons of Mass Destruction” and latter – to save civilians from being massacred by a ‘evil regime’, in the hands of a certifiable ‘lunatic.’ The euphemism ‘humanitarian mission’ covers military aggression and invasion.

Both were lies based on the strategy of ‘Liberal Interventionism,’ another euphemism, propounded following the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union, that abandoned the prohibition enacted in the 1648 Treaty of Westphalia ending the Thirty Years War in Europe against invading countries whose regimes you do not approve in order to replace them with more amenable ones.

The UN mandate to ‘protect civilians’ by enforcing a ‘no-fly zone’ did not sanction regime change, arming opposition forces, giving those forces close air support or assassinating the Head of State. NATO’s decisive intervention even exceeded the bounds of trans-national bourgeois jurisprudence with, among others, Gareth Evans, the co-chair of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty condemning the aggression, stating it was not allowed for under the explicit legal terms of the mandate.

This time also, America agreed the job be sub-let out to its junior partners-in-crime; principally Britain and France. The Secret Services of all NATO states were active in promoting the civil war, by arming and financially supporting a plethora of tribal, Islamic and comprador opposition groups who have they have shown themselves to be such an undisciplined, murderous Quisling rabble that they would not have succeeded without the sustained brutal NATO air assault.

Even so, we will see if Libyan patriots take Colonel Muhammar Gaddafi’s death as the end of hostilities? We will see if Gaddfiism has left any deep roots in Libyan society, or whether, like his ashes, it is blown away into the desert sands. He is probably the last effective member of a tough breed of nationalist Arab Bonapartist leaders who made history in the 20th century. The specific circumstances under which this genus flourished no longer apply, because imperialism is extinguishing its conditions of existence.

Successful Arab resistance, however, does continue, as Hamas and Hezbollah have shown, and while they are nominally Muslim organizations, albeit of Sunni and Shiite dispensations respectively, they are nonetheless closer to being genuine mass movements drawn from their peoples, and they are giving the Zionist/fascist US/Israeli expansionists a military run for their money.

WAR CRIMES FOR OIL

Like Iraq, this is about oil; it is about securing a crucial natural resource, which enables a decadent, gluttonous, wasteful consumer-capitalist, commodity-obsessed, Western society to continue dancing on the edge of a volcano at the expense of the rest of the World.

To a secondary extent, it is about the constant need, in an economy with a huge military-industrial complex, to test rapidly evolving military equipment on a real enemy – the more defenceless the better. War is continuous under imperialism, and the US leads the way as chief warmonger. Now it is even a great video game for the militarily-minded armchair warrior retard.

The French philosopher Baudrillard said of the 1990 attack on Iraq, it was: “a virtual reality war” designed for a society, with a popular culture saturated by violent imagery and corrupted by generations of imperial slavery, genocide and brutality against the peoples outside the ‘First-World’ heartlands, and with the technological capacity to participate and gloat in the death and suffering of peoples in far-away lands, without in any way suffering retribution, or even the threat of it. (Drones watching Drones?)

The German Communist playwright Brecht in ‘The Three Penny Opera,’ has a policeman and a criminal reminisce about the great times they had serving in the British Army on the Indian sub-continent:

(German)                          (Eng. trans.)
“und es begegnete,                “and when they met
Inhnen ‘ne neue Rasse             a new race
‘ne braune oder blasé,            a brown, or a white one
Dann machen sie vielleicht        They’d probably make
Daraus ihr Beefsteak Tartar       Mincemeat outta them.”

NATO’s war crime against the Libyan people, however dressed up in modern ‘PR-speak,’ is another blood-soaked imperial adventure, driven by greed and treachery, where the flags of the NATO aggressors against the Libyan people are better described as butchers’ aprons, and the so-called ‘liberators’ of Libya are no more than imperialist running dogs, (with the exception among anti-Gaddafi forces being the Jihadists who have their own anti-Western combined Anti-Arab secularist/heretic agenda.)

Finally, Gaddafi’s brutal termination shows again that the default position against Western gangster imperialism, however and wherever it is manifest, is People’s War. Between the international proletariat and the bourgeoisie there can be stalemate, realignment, defeat or victory– but never compromise or agreement.

1) I have not discussed the events in Libya in relation to its distinct Maghreb identity within the Arab nation, comprising the states across North Africa; Morocco, Algeria, Libya and Tunisia. Even here, Gaddaffi’s Islamic faith make him stand out among the leaders who emerged in the anti-colonial struggles of mid-century. Ben Barka, Ben Bella, Bourguiba &c. were all secular cosmopolitan civilian politicians. The best authority on this is the Marxist-Leninist political economist Samir Amin.

2) There is no reference on the Libyan civil war in relation to the ‘Arab Spring’, because I do not think there is homogeneity among the recent regional upsurges. In this light, I think the Libyan situation is uniquely important (even from its next-door neighbor, Tunisia), as it closes a chapter on an historical period of resistance to imperialist hegemony in the Middle East. Communists can draw precise lessons from it.

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