Genocide in Iraq, Palestine’s future, free speech in Venezuela: one reader writes

Our July issue featured the stories “No Green Zone for Ethnic Minorities in Iraq” by Bill Weinberg, arguing that the ethnic and sectarian warfare is approaching a “genocidal threshold”; “Israel & Palestine: One State or Two?,” excerpts from the debate between Israeli peace activists Ilan PappĆ© and Uri Avnery; and “Free Speech in Venezuela: Whither the RCTV Shut-Down?,” an analysis of the controversy by the Caracas anarchist group El Libertario. Our July Exit Poll was: “Is it genocide in Iraq yet? Who is responsible? What can help?” Extra Credit: “Israel and Palestine: One state or two?” Extra Extra Credit: “The RCTV shut-down in Venezuela: righteous blow against the empire or draconian crackdown on free speech?” We received the following response:

From Tim Slater in Bavaria, Germany:

Exit Poll: Is it genocide in Iraq yet? – no

Who is responsible? – all the usual suspects

What can help? – “Shock and Awe” strikes against the principal “rogue states”… or, more realistically, an announcement of an immediate withdrawal by the occupying powers

WW4 REPORT replies: With entire ethnic communities such as the Mandeans forced from the country, and small groups such as the Yazidis being massacred, are you so sure it fails to constitute genocide? Who are the “usual suspects”? Finally, even if a US withdrawal does de-escalate things, that will not end our (meaning the anti-war forces’) responsibility to Iraq’s ethnic minorities. It was our government’s intervention that unleashed the crisis (whether it qualifies as genocide or not), and it is unlikely to simply go away no matter what Washington does.

Extra Credit: Israel and Palestine: One state or two?

I suspect that the time for a viable two-state solution has passed, and that Israel must be converted into a normal multi-ethnic Palestinian state.

WW4 REPORT replies: Why is that outcome any more “viable” than a two-state solution?

Extra Extra Credit: The RCTV shut-down in Venezuela: righteous blow against the empire or draconian crackdown on free speech?

Neither! A quite normal administrative action — the only thing out-of-the-ordinary about it is that the government has not put the avowed putschists on trial.

WW4 REPORT responds: The analysis from El Libertario made clear that other Venezuelan media moguls, such as Gustavo Cisneros of VenevisiĆ³n, also cheered on the 2002 attempted coupā€”as this June 7, 2006 piece from VenezuelAnalysis, “Venezuela’s Murdoch,” corroborates. Yet because Cisneros has since decided to bet on Chavez as the horse that happens to be winning at the moment, the regime has not moved against him as it has against RCTV. So why shouldn’t those “putschists” be shut down (and “put on trial”) too, if this is all about “normal administrative action” and not about who is willing to suck up to the caudillo?

Just asking.

See our last posts on the Venezuelan crisis. See our last Exit Poll results.

  1. JG drops in late and flippant
    Our reader “JG” writes:

    Exit Poll: Is it genocide in Iraq yet?

    Semantics. It’s bad.

    Who is responsible?

    Reagan / Thatcher for the Iran/Iraq war. Reagan for taking out the Iranian navy. Heavy handedness like the Sykes-Picot Agreement.

    What can help?

    Nothing. Three states coming. Will NATO keep the Turks off the Kurds?

    Extra Credit: Israel and Palestine: One state or two?

    Eight: Hamasland, Fatahistan, Jeruselum: International City of Tourism, and split up modern Israel into: So-you-want-to-live-together-istan (the predominantly Arab neighborhoods inside the pre-67 Israeli borders and some settlements), Golan Heights Peace Resort and Casino, ‘Hole-In-The-Sheet’ and ‘socialist-techno-rasta-jewville’. My guess there will be hot chicks everywhere but some in burkhas.

    Extra Extra Credit: The RCTV shut-down in Venezuela: righteous blow against the empire or draconian crackdown on free speech?

    Probably both. I wouldn’t shut down Fox but I understand the desire. But Fox hasn’t been culpable in any attempted coups. Yet.