UK Class War bashes “leftist” Hezbollah cheerleaders

From London Class War, July 26:

HezBollocks and IsRabies:
A Class War Federation statement on the War in Lebanon

Class War is appalled at the carnage that is occurring in the Middle East. We are also disappointed but not surprised at what is being said about it, especially by some “progressive” organisations.

Lebanon is being turned into a grotesque war-games board as the real protagonists – the USA and Iran – use their proxies to slug it out.

Neither the Israeli army nor Hezbollah give a flying fuck about ‘their’ civilians, except as bloody totems to hang in front of the cameras of the world’s press in order to justify their own next atrocity.

The left have adopted two approaches.

Firstly, wholesale adoption of the Islamist agenda, cheerleading Hamas or Hezbollah without qualification or criticism. This ‘Idiot anti-imperialism’, the trademark of today’s SWP, says my enemy’s enemy is my friend and any criticism of them, no matter how mild, is ‘racism, islamophobia, and Zionist pro American warmongering.’

The second approach is slightly more subtle – Hezbollah is fighting back, therefore we must support Hezbollah and the slogan ‘we are all Hezbollah’ is an act of basic solidarity with those who are fighting back against imperialism – the slogan is compared with the Parisian students who, when Danny Cohn-Bendit was attacked in the bourgeois press as a German Jew, marched through Paris chanting ‘nous sommes tout les jiufs allemands!’ (we are all German Jews).

This argument is crap – Hezbollah isn’t a nationality or a racial epithet, it is a political party/militia, if the slogan really wanted to fit then the SWP should have handed out placards proclaiming ‘WE ARE ALL SHI’ITE’.

Lebanon has a radical history, albeit one distorted by the chains of Leninist communism, but this has been written out of the Brit left’s history books in their rush to embrace Islamo-trottery.

A real working class alternative is desperately needed – one that recognises that there can be no peace whilst borders are drawn by reference to the Torah, and international policy is determined in Washington by consulting the Book of Revelations.

“Israelis living in Tiberuius fund the war, and contribute bodies to the war. It’s not true to say they are wholly ‘innocent’… ”

– that quote is from an otherwise relatively sane leftist, and is a justification for every atrocity against civilians ever. It gives an idea just how much the left loses it when the question of Israel is raised.

The Israeli state oppresses the Palestinians, driving them into the hands of the fanatics of Hamas out of despair at the failure of the secular Palestinian left. In turn the suicide bombers provide for the Israeli state ‘proof’ of the murderous nature of the Palestinians and drives the Israeli public to support harsher and harsher measures against the ‘terrorists’.

This is a self destructive spiral and must be broken.

The Israeli state is not shaken by katyushas or by suicide bombers – it is strengthened by them.

The last real challenge to the Israeli state was the Intifada, mass popular resistance on the streets of the west bank and Gaza, and amongst the ‘Israeli Arab’ population, this rose up from below from the streets and spread all across the middle east and north Africa as the Arab working class drew inspiration from the bravery of the Palestinian youth, and employed the same tactics to confront their own ruling classes. Inside Israel proper the intifada created real tensions within the army, as soldiers refused to be used to gun down children and sparked a massive peace movement amongst the general population.

The Oslo peace process was designed to derail the intifada and create from the PLO a police force to keep the unruly Palestinians in line.

All the arguments of the left revolve around one state/two state. All happily accept the artificial divisions created in the twentieth century by the very imperialists that they claim to oppose, and all ignore the actual people – Palestinian, Israeli, Lebanese, Druse, Syrian, Egyptian, Jordanian, Bedouin – who live there. Re-jigging the lines on a map will create new oppressions, new grievances and new horrors, and we as revolutionaries should have no part in assisting that.

We should stand shoulder to shoulder with those struggling against the oppressors of the Israeli state and the Palestinian bantustan. We fight against our ‘own’ rulers who attempt to use this slaughter to their own ends and use measly words ‘condemning the violence’ whilst writing out the receipts for the latest arms contract.

Any state solution is a continuation of the same bullshit.

No Borders
No States
No Gods
No War but the Class War

Note that the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) refered to here is the British party of that name, not the American. In both its politics and its leadership role in the “anti-war” movement, the British SWP has much more in common with the American Workers World Party.

See our last posts on the Lebanon crisis and the idiot left.

  1. Meanwhile in NYC…
    Some very bad news for free speech, much as we think it is idiotic to cheer on Hezbollah. From the New York Times of Aug. 25 via the censorious Coalition Against Terrorist Media, Sept. 14:

    New York Man Charged With Enabling Hezbollah Television Broadcasts

    For several years, Javed Iqbal has operated a small company from a Brooklyn storefront and out of the garage at his Staten Island home that provides satellite programming for households, including sermons from Christian evangelists seeking worldwide exposure.

    Mr. Iqbal’s home, a modest two-story stone and brick house on Van Name Avenue in Mariners Harbor, stands out because among the children’s toys in the backyard were eight satellite dishes.

    But this week, the budding entrepreneur’s house and storefront were raided by federal agents, and Mr. Iqbal was charged with providing customers services that included satellite broadcasts of a television station controlled by Hezbollah — a violation of federal law.

    Yesterday, Mr. Iqbal was arraigned in Federal District Court in Manhattan and was ordered held in $250,000 bail. The Hezbollah station, Al Manar — or “the beacon” in Arabic — was designated a global terrorist entity by the United States Treasury Department in March of this year.

    Hezbollah was designated a foreign terrorist organization by the State Department in 1997.

    “The charge lurking in the background is material support for terrorism,” Stephen A. Miller, an assistant United States attorney, told United States Magistrate Judge Gabriel W. Gorenstein. He said Mr. Iqbal, 42, was a flight risk because he has family in England and Pakistan. “We think there is a strong incentive for him to run,” Mr. Miller said.

    Mr. Iqbal’s lawyer, Mustapha Ndanusa, said his client, who came to the United States from Pakistan, is a compassionate man, and at one point offered shelter in his house to a homeless woman.

    “He has been very generous in the community,” Mr. Ndanusa said outside court. “He’s a fun-loving guy.”

    Another spokesman for Mr. Iqbal called the government’s charges ridiculous. “It’s like the government of Iran saying we’re going to ban The New York Times because we think of it as a terrorist outfit,” the spokesman, Farhan Memon, said before the hearing. “Or China trying to ban CNN.”

    Civil libertarians also expressed alarm.

    “It appears that the statute under which Mr. Iqbal is being prosecuted includes a First Amendment exemption that prevents the government from punishing people for importing news communications,” Donna Lieberman, executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, said in a statement. “Such an exemption is constitutionally necessary, and the fact that the government is proceeding with the prosecution in spite of it raises serious questions about how free our marketplace of idea is.”

    Court papers filed by the government to obtain a warrant to search Mr. Iqbal’s business and home suggested that the authorities learned that certain high-definition global transmission systems were providing access to Al Manar broadcasts in the United States. They got their information from Mark Dubowitz, who heads a Washington-based policy group that has monitored Al Manar — through a project called the Coalition Against Terrorist Media — and campaigned for its removal from worldwide broadcasting.

    Mr. Dubowitz said in a telephone interview that Al Manar’s programming includes “very explicit calls for violence,” including ones that promote suicide bombing against American troops in Iraq and “death to America.”

    He said that some broadcasts, which he characterized as racist and anti-Semitic, glorify suicide bombings and suicide bombers themselves as martyrs and that children’s programming encourages youngsters to “join the jihad and give their lives for the cause.”

    The programming, he said, is sophisticated and diverse, ranging from soap operas and dramas, produced in Syria and Iran, to what he called “MTV-like” music videos. A 28-part series that was broadcast over Ramadan and based on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion included a dramatization that depicted what he said looked like an Orthodox Jew slitting the throat of a Christian child and draining the child’s blood to make food for Passover.

    According to the government documents, agents flew a helicopter over Mr. Iqbal’s home, then sent a confidential informant to the shop to buy a satellite package from Mr. Iqbal. The informant said that Mr. Iqbal had told him that the station was legal. Mr. Iqbal, according to the government, pressed the informant to buy a package with Al Manar instead of another service.

    Mr. Iqbal’s family members declined comment yesterday. Neighbors said that the family had lived there for about five years. A sign attached to a chain-link fence along the driveway announces the business, “HDTV-LTD,” and advertises “TX/RX Earthstation and video, audio data, IP security.”

    Melinda Edwards, who lives across the street, said Mr. Iqbal would use his snow blower to clear her driveway after winter storms.

    “He seemed nice,” she said. “He seemed like everyone else.” Like many others in the neighborhood, Ms. Edwards said she noticed the large number of satellite dishes — some of which can be seen from across the street — and asked him about them a while back.

    “I said, ‘You got more satellite dishes than anyone I’ve ever seen,’” Ms. Edwards said.

    She said that Mr. Iqbal told her that the satellites were for his business.