Posts Tagged ‘Hitler’

What Became of Western Morality?

January 3, 2009

By Paul Craig Roberts | Information Clearing House, Jan 2, 2009

On the last day of the old year, two Israelis, Jeff Halper who heads the Israeli peace movement ICAHD and Neve Gordon who is chairman of the department of politics and government at Ben-Gurion University, asked, “Where’s the Academic Outrage Over the Bombing of a University in Gaza?” [ http://www.counterpunch.org gordon12312008.html ]

“Not one of the nearly 450 presidents of American colleges and universities who prominently denounced an effort by British academics to boycott Israeli universities in September 2007 have raised their voice in opposition to Israel’s bombardment of the Islamic University of Gaza earlier this week,” report Halper and Gordon.   They note that Columbia University president Lee C. Bollinger, who has in the past ignorantly insulted Islamic representatives, “has been silent.”

It is the goyim moralists who are silent, not the Jews.  It is the Israeli newspaper, Haaretz, not the goyim media, that provides reports of Israel’s abuse of Palestinians.  Gideon Levy’s “The Neighborhood Bully Strikes Again” was published in Haaretz (29 December), not in the goyim press.  Levy’s words–“Once again, Israel’s violent responses, even if there is justification for them, exceed all proportion and cross every red line of humaneness, morality, international law and wisdom”–are not words that can appear in American print or TV media.  Such words, printed in Israeli newspapers, never reach the goyim.

The extent of Americans’ ignorance is breathtaking.  Israel has the Palestinians jammed into tightly controlled ghettos known as Gaza and the West Bank.  With Egypt’s help, Israel controls the inflows of food, medicines, water, and energy into Gaza.  Palestinians in Gaza are not permitted to enter Israel or Egypt.  Last week a humanitarian ship bringing food and medicine was rammed by Israeli gunboats and turned away.

In the West Bank Palestinians are walled off from their fields, jobs, medical care, education, water, and from one another by endless checkpoints, roads for “Jews only,” walls, barbed wire, and machine gun towers.  Palestinians are being evicted from their towns house by house, block by block.

Israel’s slow theft of Palestine is illegal under international law but protected by US “diplomacy.”

The Palestinians are no more of a threat to Israel than Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto were a threat to the Nazi state.  Yet, everywhere in America–Congress, the executive branch, the print and TV media, the universities, evangelical Christian institutions–there is the belief that Israel is on the verge of annihilation by Palestinian terrorists.  This ignorance, so carefully cultivated by the Israel Lobby, turns genocidal aggression into self-defense.


It fools Americans, but it doesn’t fool Israelis.  The Israelis have always known that “self-defense” is a cloak for a Zionist policy of territorial expansion.  The policy is controversial within Israel. Many Israelis object, just as many Americans object to President Bush’s illegal wars and violations of US civil liberties.  Many Israelis give voice to their moral conscience, but they are overwhelmed by vested interests.

Karl Marx declared morality to be merely a mask for vested interests.  The writings of Marx and Engels are scornful of good will and moral ideals as effective forces in history. The Israeli state epitomizes Marx’s doctrine that power alone is the effective force.

Many American conservatives share the Israeli state’s belief in the efficacy of power.  Conservatives who turned against Bush’s wars did so because the US was not brutal enough.  They turned away from Bush’s long inconclusive wars in the way that fans desert a losing team.

Americans used to say that “the pen is mightier than the sword,” but this hasn’t been the case for US and Israeli aggression.  The success the two regimes have had in instilling fear into their populations is part of the explanation for the impotence of morality.  Another part of the explanation is that vested interests are a powerful constraint on morality.

Consider the case of Lee Bollinger.  Columbia University is dependent on Jewish money, faculty and students.  If Bollinger were to take a stand against Israel’s mistreatment of the Palestinians, he would be denounced as an anti-Semite.  Presidents of competitor universities would not come to his defense. They would pile on in hopes of recruiting Columbia’s top faculty and students and redirecting the flow of financial resources from Columbia to themselves.

An American newspaper or TV network that took a stand against Israel’s abuse of Palestinians would be confronted with an advertising boycott organized by AIPAC.   American politicians who criticize Israel go down to defeat by Israel Lobby money.

Hegel gave too much emphasis to ideas, Marx too much to material interests.  Both forces operate in the world.  There are times in history when revolutionary ideas shatter material interests.  Other times the two coexist in a balance of power.  In other times material interests prevail over morality.

We are living in the latter time.  Financial interests, the military-security complex, and the Israel Lobby are the powers that rule America.  They are buttressed by neoconservatives and Christian Zionists and by the patriotic hubris that America is the main force for good operating in the world.  The evils America commits are dismissed as necessary to the service of good.  The destruction of Iraq, for example, is justified as “bringing freedom and democracy to the Iraqi people.”

A number of commentators, including myself, predict a decline in America’s economic power.  As this occurs, Israel will have to abandon its policy of violence.  With the accumulated hatred that its policies have fomented, Israel will be vulnerable.

The world will need to remember that although Israel is a Jewish state, it is a state whose policies many Jews find objectionable, just as a majority of American Jews oppose President Bush’s wars of aggression in the Middle East and his unconstitutional policies at home.  We must not confuse Israel’s Zionist government with world Jewry, just as we must not confuse the American people with the war criminals in the Bush Regime.

Consider, who do you trust with your civil liberties, the US Department of Justice or the ACLU’s phalanx of Jewish attorneys?

We must avoid the mistake that was made by blaming the German people for Hitler.  It was the aristocratic German military that tried to remove Hitler.  In contrast, Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi blocked the attempt to impeach George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.  Pelosi is a discredit to California, but shall we blame all of America for Pelosi’s defense of war criminals?  How can we do so when US Rep. Dennis Kucinich courageously read out the articles of impeachment on the House floor?

Are all Americans guilty because Kucinich did not prevail?

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Making Nuclear Extermination Respectable

August 1, 2008
James Petras | The Palestine Chronicle, July 30, 2008
‘Morris is a frequent lecturer and consultant to the Israeli political and military establishment.’

On July 18, 2008 the New York Times published an article by Israeli-Jewish historian, Professor Benny Morris, advocating an Israeli nuclear-genocidal attack on Iran with the likelihood of killing 70 million Iranians — 12 times the number of Jewish victims in the Nazi holocaust:

Iran’s leaders would do well to rethink their gamble and suspend their nuclear program. Barring this, the best they could hope for is that Israel’s conventional air assault will destroy their nuclear facilities. To be sure, this would mean thousands of Iranian casualties and international humiliation. But the alternative is an Iran turned into a nuclear wasteland.

Morris is a frequent lecturer and consultant to the Israeli political and military establishment and has unique access to Israeli strategic military planners. Morris’ advocacy and public support of the massive, brutal expulsion of all Palestinians is on public record. Yet his genocidal views have not precluded his receiving numerous academic awards. His writings and views are published in Israel’s leading newspapers and journals. Morris’ views are not the idle ranting of a marginal psychopath, as witnessed by the recent publication of his latest op-ed article in the New York Times.

What does the publication by the New York Times of an article, which calls for the nuclear incineration of 70 million Iranians and the contamination of the better part of a billion people in the Middle East, Asia and Europe, tell us about US politics and culture? For it is the NYT, which informs the ‘educated classes’ in the US, its Sunday supplements, literary and editorial pages and which serves as the ‘moral conscience’ of important sectors of the cultural, economic and political elite.

The New York Times provides a certain respectability to mass murder, which Morris’ views otherwise would not possess if say, they were published in the neo-conservative weeklies or monthlies. The fact that the NYT considers the prospect of an Israeli mass extermination of millions of Iranians part of the policy debate in the Middle East reveals the degree to which Zionofascism has infected the ‘higher’ cultural and journalist circles of the United States. Truth to say, this is the logical outgrowth of the Times‘ public endorsement of Israel’s economic blockade to starve 1.4 million Palestinians in Gaza; the Times’ cover-up of Israeli-Zionist-AIPAC influence in launching the US invasion of Iraq leading to over one million murdered Iraqi citizens.

The Times sets the tone for the entire New York cultural scene, which privileges Israeli interests, to the point of assimilating into the US political discourse not only its routine violations of international law, but its threats, indeed promises, to scorch vast areas of the earth in pursuit of its regional supremacy. The willingness of the NYT to publish an Israeli genocide-ethnocide advocate tells us about the strength of the ties between a purportedly ‘liberal establishment’ pro-Israel publication and the totalitarian Israeli right: It is as if to say that for the liberal pro-Israel establishment, the non-Jewish Nazis are off limits, but the views and policies of Judeo-fascists need careful consideration and possible implementation.

Morris’ New York Times ‘nuclear-extermination’ article did not provoke any opposition from the 52 Presidents of the Major American Jewish Organizations (PMAJO) because, in its daily information bulletin, Daily Alert, it has frequently published articles by Israeli and US Zionists advocating an Israeli and/or US nuclear attack on Iran. In other words, Morris’ totalitarian views are part of the cultural matrix deeply embedded in the Zionist organizational networks and its extensive ‘reach’ in US cultural and political circles. What the Times did in publishing Morris’ lunacy has taken genocidal discourse out of the limited circulation of Zionist influentials and into the mainstream of millions of American readers.

Apart from a handful of writers (Gentile and Jewish) publishing in marginal web sites, there was no political or moral condemnation from the entire literary, political and journalistic world of this affront to our humanity. No attempt was made to link Morris’ totalitarian genocidal policies to Israel’s public official threats and preparations for nuclear war. There is no anti-nuclear campaign led by our most influential public intellectuals to repudiate the state (Israel) and its public intellectuals who prepare a nuclear war with the potential to exterminate more than ten times the number of Jews slaughtered by the Nazis.

A nuclear incineration of the nation of Iran is the Israeli counterpart of Hitler’s gas chambers and ovens writ large. Extermination is the last stage of Zionism: Informed by the doctrine of rule the Middle East or ruin the air and land of the world. That is the explicit message of Benny Morris (and his official Israeli sponsors), who like Hitler, issues ultimatums to the Iranians, ‘surrender or be destroyed’ and who threatens the US, join us in bombing Iran or face a world ecological and economic catastrophe.

That Morris is utterly, starkly and clinically insane is beyond question. That the New York Times in publishing his genocidal ravings provides new signs of how power and wealth has contributed to the degeneration of Jewish intellectual and cultural life in the US. To comprehend the dimensions of this decay we need only compare the brilliant tragic-romantic German-Jewish writer, Walter Benjamin, desperately fleeing the advance of totalitarian Nazi terror to the Israeli-Jewish writer Benny Morris’ criminal advocacy of Zionist nuclear terror published in the New York Times.

The question of Zionist power in America is not merely a question of a ‘lobby’ influencing Congressional and White House decisions concerning foreign aid to Israel. What is at stake today are the related questions of the advocacy of a nuclear war in which 70 million Iranians face extermination and the complicity of the US mass media in providing a platform, nay a certain political respectability for mass murder and global contamination. Unlike the Nazi past, we cannot claim, as the good Germans did, that ‘we did not know’ or ‘we weren’t notified’, because it was written by an eminent Israeli academic and was published in the New York Times.

-James Petras, a former Professor of Sociology at Binghamton University, New York, owns a 50-year membership in the class struggle, is an adviser to the landless and jobless in Brazil and Argentina, and is co-author of Globalization Unmasked (Zed Books). Petras’ forthcoming book, Zionism and US Militarism, is due from Clarity Press, Atlanta, in August 2008. He contributed this article to PalestineChronicle.com. Contact him at: jpetras@binghamton.edu.


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