The Syriza Party in Greece: Anatomy of a Sellout

Interesting abstract from Academia. All papers on Academia can be downloaded and reprinted for free. Syriza was the radial left hope for Europe in the wake of the 2008 Depression in which Greece was hit perhaps worst of all. The Right says it was because of Greece’s tax and spend policies, but Greece’s taxes are not high, nor is it’s social democracy particularly robust. The true problem is massive corruption of the political classes at all ends of the spectrum combined with an absolute failure of the wealthy classes to pay as much as one nickel in taxes. In other words, The Latin American Disease (in part) because Latin America suffers from exactly these problems more than anything else.

Syriza had a very powerful voice in opposition to the Austerity Regime demanded by the EU out of Germany (Germany basically runs the EU and lays down the law). There were two ways out of the debt crisis. Either go into crisis austerity and sell off a good portion of their public lands and enterprises, or simply default on their debt and start all over again. Perhaps both would have been equally painful, but I think default would have been best.

As is, a good portion of Greece’s public lands and public enterprises (the health care system, national parks, electric grid, hydropower, a number of actual islands of the country itself) were sold off the lowest of capitalist parasites. Anyone think the national parks, electric grid, health care system, hydropower, and even the very islands of the nation itself will be any better off now that they are in the hands of a lot of greedheads? They’re not. Nothing good ever happens with any of these sell-offs of private enterprises.

Worse, the selling off of the very partrimony of Greece itself was combined with the worst austerity, elimination of health care and all social programs for the masses combined with massive job losses so the masses of unemployed could not count on any state help now that they could not pay their bills. In other words, the Greeks got the worst of both worlds. Austerity and selloff and they gained nothing at all other than emptied pockets and rifled and ransacked goods.

No one could pay for medical care or hospital beds either. Many people were thrown out of their homes because they could not pay the rent and shantytowns of former workers and even middle class people sprung up all over Greece. Some political parties, even the far Right Golden Dawn to their credit, stepped in to try to provide the social help that the state would not.

This was followed by the election of Syriza, which campaigned on not paying the debt and opposing austerity. As soon as they got in power, they quickly changed their tune. I don’t think they sold out so much as they did not have the guts to go through with the program. No doubt there were massive pressures on them to go through the standard austerity model. At any rate, Syriza did not default on its debt like Argentina and Iceland did (to little effect on their economies), and they implemented austerity with full force. They sold out the masses completely.

As they stayed in power, they moved more and more to the right. Now that they are out of power, they have moved even further to the right. There is a new rightwing government called New Democracy in charge about which I know little, except I assume they’re not real great. Syriza is now utterly unable to offer an alternative to ND, while ND has apparently completely failed in the COVID epidemic as most rightwing governments everywhere did, no doubt leaving many corpses in its wake.

We have the standard Latin American model here where the Right (call it the Conservatives in Colombia or ARENA in El Salvador) “the right wing of the oligarchy” is absolutely toxic, but the Left (call it the Liberals in Colombia, the AD and APRA “social democratic” traitors in Venezuela and Peru), etc. are simply the “liberal wing of the oligarchy,” which in practice means virtually no change at all.

AD in Venezuela has combined with the fascist Right to overthrow the Chavistas, backing every coup attempt of various flavors against the government. For all intents and purposes, they’re not much different from Guaido. AD was always just a party to split up the loot from the oil rents from the state oil company amongst the oligarchs and the upper middle class management of the company.

This is very discouraging and it sounds like Thatcher’s TINA (There is No Alternative) response to neoliberalism. Perhaps there is no alternative to neoliberalism and austerity in the EU model, which has always been based on neoliberal orthodoxy. Note that debt cannot exceed 3% of GNP in any given year. That’s far too low an amount of public spending to run a country decently. There was no reason to put that in other than for neoliberal orthodoxy which despises all public spending for whatever rationale they have for doing that, either ideological, war of ideas, or economic.

If the situation in the EU is TINA, then Brexit is the way to go. Greece and a few others have been threatening to do that, but the NATO fascist military alliance (NATO has always been run by the US) is the imperialist glue that holds the EU economic community together. A neoliberal economic community held together by a fascist imperialist army. What else is new? Straight out of Milton Friedman (“Neoliberalism cannot be imposed democratically; it must be imposed by dictatorship”) himself. It is very hard to leave NATO. Notice even the Brits didn’t do that. NATO may be an abusive spouse for many of the nations inside the alliance, but if so, most NATO countries are Stockholmed wives.

I don’t know what to say except that this is yet another sellout of the Left.

For all of their faults, the governments of Venezuela, Nicaragua, Bolivia, and Argentina have refused to go this route. At the moment, Peru is also challenging this model. The penalty has been repeated coup attempts in most these countries, economic wars, and sanctions, but at least they didn’t sell out. I still think this sort of resistance is the way to go, painful or not.

Our existences have dignity or they are worthless. The EU model is the death of dignity. At least with the Pink Tide, those nations can hold their heads up amidst the ruins and say

At least we are free. We may be poor but at least we are free.

You know that’s got to be worth something.

Outside of the homeland, there is nothing.

– A famous Baath Party intellectual from Iraq

Whatever beefs I had with Saddam, and I had plenty; Hell, at least he was a nationalist in a time when such patriots are scarce and viewed as traitors to the International Globalist Elite based on multinational corporate rule over the rule of actual states. Governments are increasingly irrelevant now that billionaires and corporations have more money and power than many actual countries.

SISP Conference 2021, Online, 9-11 September 2021

SYRIZA back in opposition (2019-2021): Towards a new political direction?

Grigoris Markou

Postdoctoral researcher, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

Abstract

SYRIZA’s spectacular rise to power through a radical political proposal and a strong populist discourse has been the field of study of a large number of political scientists in recent years. Alexis Tsipras (Syriza’s leader) in opposition and in power expressed a strong inclusionary populist discourse, placing popular classes at a central position and opposing the political and economic establishment of the country and Europe.

SYRIZA, during its second term began to change its physiognomy, abandoning gradually its radicalism and embracing a typed of “political realism” and consensus, while it began to soften its populist intensity and passion. After the end of its rule (2019), it became clear that SYRIZA’s populism had nothing to do with the populist intensity and passion of the previous years.

SYRIZA (2019-present) continued to maintain some populist slogans and a kind of anti-elitism (e.g. “the many” against “the establishment”), but to a lesser extent.

Furthermore, a huge gap has been created between the party and the popular classes. SYRIZA can’t persuade, mobilize and lead the people against the right-wing government of New Democracy in a period of intense social discontent with the management of the pandemic and the economy by the Greek government and at a time when popular demands for democracy, justice, and labor protection are emerging.

In this presentation, I will present the main characteristics of SYRIZA’s political discourse after its defeat in the 2019 national election, attempting to find if the party continues to express a populist discourse or not through discourse analysis while underlining its new political direction. Furthermore, I will examine the reasons the rapid transformation of the party in a more mainstream and “realistic” direction.

The Shoah and Other Genocides

My understanding is that Hitler’s “extermination and mass murder campaigns” took the lives of 15 million people. 6 million of those were Jews. Super-Jews (Jewish tribal activists, otherwise known as stereotypical “loudmouth Jews”) angrily reject the 15 million and even Wiesenthal’s 11 million. I actually like this man, while I don’t like Elie “The Weasel” Wiesel. Wiesenthal’s a mensch, a human first and a Jew second. The Weasel is of the course the opposite type, a Jew first and a human second, if at all.

Also, although this man suffered horrendously, and I’m very sorry that happened to him, in his books, he made up a bunch of lies about what happened in the concentration camps. You would think that just reporting the facts of horrific Nazi behavior would be bad enough. But no. The Weasel had to go and make a bunch up a bunch of BS stories that never happened. This is bad for another reason because it’s bad for the Jews.

The antisemites see some of the stories Jewish Holocaust survivors reveal as made-up lies, and of course they use it as fodder for their sleazy Holocaust Denial project, the goal of which is to deny the Holocaust so they can do it again, and do it right this time! The Holocaust Deniers are playing a dirty game. Thanks for playing into the hands of Holocaust Deniers, Weasel.

Jews have a bad attitude towards the Shoah, as these other 9 million victims of Hitler’s extermination campaigns are not to be mentioned, and in fact it is even “antisemitic” to bring them up! Because to bring up non-Jewish victims of Hitler’s murder campaign would take the focus away from the “special” mass murder campaign directed against the Jews.

Granted the campaign against the Jews (the Holocaust) was genocidal in nature, while the death of the other 9 million was not, but still, Jews are notorious for not caring about these other victims. They also hate bringing up any other genocides such as the Armenian Genocide and the anti-Christian genocides of the Young Turks. They say it is “antisemitic” to bring this mass murder campaign up because it detracts from the “special” mass murder campaign directed at the Jews. You see this theme of Jewish “specialness” over and over? And they wonder why people don’t like them.

But those of us who are Jew-wise knew they would do that.

The Jews also turned Holocaust into an industry and a money-making franchise. A famous Jew said, “There’s no business like Shoah business.”

But we knew they would do that too.

They can’t help themselves. Of course they’re going to make a buck off of it. That’s how they roll.

A Super-Jew wrote: Funny how there are no other organized denial societies.

There is Turkish Denial of the Armenian and other Christian Genocides of the Young Turks. For a while there, Japanese would not own up to their killings. Muslims killed 50 million Hindus in India, and they attempt to wash that away.

Genocide denial is probably nothing new. It fits in with human psychology in a lot of ways. Furthermore, I am convinced that we humans are a genocidal lot from the start, so it’s a baken-in tendency, sadly.

Jews: The Old Ways and the New Ways

From a conversation on the Net:

“Jack, are you aware that in the UK, that gentiles cannot convert to the Jewish faith, that UK rabbis virtually forbid social contact with non-Jews, and even the eating of British food and meals is forbidden and if a Jewish person marries a non-jew they are shunned and ostracized. Officially they have left the faith and cannot return.”

This is the old way of the Jews, traditional Talmudic Judaism as it was practiced in the ghettos of Europe until the Liberation of the Jews by Napolean in 1812. A proper Jewish man at this time would never even take tea with a Gentile, much less eat with him. The Yemeni Jews refuse to eat or have tea with Gentiles to this day. The refuse to eat or even have tea with their neighbors, and they wonder why people don’t like them!? In the ghettos, rabbis used to try to forbid most contact with Gentiles outside of that necessary for business. Hell, they built a lot of those ghettos themselves to keep the Jews from mingling.

A Gentile may now convert to Judaism, though it’s a sleazy affair costing up to ((($10,000))), all of which goes into the pocket of the completely non-corrupt rabbi giving you lessons. Jews discourage conversion. Some say converts are not treated as real Jews or true Jews. I’m not sure how true this is.

I imagine the overwhelming majority of even Orthodox Jews will take tea and eat with a Gentile nowadays. I’d be surprised if any won’t. I had lunch with an Orthodox Jewish woman in the Bay Area not long ago. I have never heard that Diaspora Jews were not allowed to eat the foods of their lands.

In the old days, men marrying out were simply lost to the Jews. Bye bye. Women were not allowed to marry out on threat of death or dismemberment. I’m not aware of discrimination nowadays against Jews who marry out. Half have married out anyway.

Why did Jewish funeral processions speed past our door at high speed breaking the speed limit on the way to a cemetery?

There is a sense of “Chosenness” among the Jews that can be a problem, in this case, probably leading to them thinking they are above the law or the laws don’t apply to them. Variations on this sort of thing are unfortunately still quite common among modern Jews, even completely non-religious ones.

Every ethnic group has its issues.

(The commenter then wrote an arguably antisemitic letter to a Jewish organization. It was not printed.)

Your letter would appear anti-Semitic to most Jews and many Gentiles. No Jewish paper is going to run an antisemitic letter to the editor. If word got out that they did that, antisemites would flood the editor’s box, and they wouldn’t have room to print anything else.

What Could European Jews Have Done in the 1920’s to Stave Off the Holocaust

From a discussion I am in on Academia: If the 1920s European Jewish Community had listened to suggestions similar to mine then one hopes the Holocaust would not have happened.

I’m trying hard to think of what European Jews could have done in the 1920’s to stave off the wave of antisemitism that occurred 10-20 years later, the causes of which continue to mystify me to this very day.

It’s not wealth. Polish Jews were poor as dirt, and Jews in the USSR hadn’t much. On the other hand, in 1932, Jews had 1% of the population of Germany and 32% of the wealth.

They may well have gotten most of that wealth fair and square and simply out-competed Gentiles as they tend to do, but there are not a whole lot of people who will put up with a tiny minority monopolizing that much income.

But what were the German Jews to do? Give all their money away? Keep in mind that in addition to being grasping capitalists, Jews were also called Communist enemies of capitalism. German antisemitism wasn’t very coherent.

It wasn’t Zionism. Most European Jews rejected Zionism at that time.

Granted, Jews were prominent in the depravity of Weimar, but they were only 1% of the population. Weimar depravity involved a lot of the other 99% too.

It wasn’t Jewish standoffishness, general assholery, and being unfriendly to mean towards Gentiles. The German Jews were the most assimilated Jews in history, and the above behavior tends to be associated with the Orthodox.

It wasn’t Communism. Jews were 3% of the USSR. It took a lot more than 3% to create the USSR and the Soviet Jews were so un-Jewish that they may as well have been Gentiles. Trotsky refused to identify as a Jew.

There were a few Jews in the German Communist revolution, but it petered out pretty quick. Yes, the Hungarian Communist revolution was led by Jew Bela Kun, whose crimes are much exaggerated. Anyway, that didn’t last long either.

Also there had been a short-lived Communist revolution in the south of Germany in 1920. Yes, it was led by some Jews, but they needed a lot of Gentile support to seize power. Well, they lost.

And after that, the German middle class became very worried about Communism spreading to Germany, as the middle classes always worry about this, seeing that they stand to lose property, income, and prestige with the advent of Communism. Hence, Jews were scapegoated as Communists.

Hitler’s war was explicitly against “Jewish Bolshevism.” They were one and the same and he was out to destroy both of them.

The Jews were scapegoated as having “stabbed Germany in the back in WW1.” It’s not true. As the war wore on, the German public, like the Russian one, got more and more tired of war and wanted to just end the war by any means.

A lot of anti-war liberal types started writing columns and issuing statements. A few Jewish show biz types also called out to end the war. The Germans were losing anyway. And the antiwar crowd was overwhelmingly Gentile. However, some prominent Jews did stick out.

The truth is that Germany was defeated on the battlefield, not at home. War only hastened the inevitable. Instead of admitting they lost, many, including the war veterans in the reactionary Freikorps, blamed the antiwar crowd at home for “stabbing Germany in the back” and causing its defeat. It’s a bad argument like the similar rightwing argument against the Vietnam War protestors regarding the Vietnam War.

Instead of scapegoating the antiwar crowd, Jews were scapegoated. However, at this time Germany, the general population was wildly anti-Semitic. I remember Goering was the only Gentile at his university who would even converse with Jewish students. God knows why they were hated. But widely despised minorities make easy scapegoats whenever something bad happens.

I hate to say the Jews were scapegoated because that is the typical Jewish “We Dindu Nuffin” line, but in that case, clearly the German Gentiles scapegoated the German Jews.

A Debate on the Indian IQ

Nice little debate here between Tamberlane and me about the Indian IQ. Enjoy. Tamberlane is in blockquotes, and my responses follow.

Wouldn’t the Indian IQ have gone up after the end of famines and diseases?

You claim it is low because the lower classes have been having more kids surviving due to lack of famines and cures for diseases? Follow?

Anyways, there were plenty of diseases in India, but there were no mass culling events like there were in Europe, where 1/4 to 1/3 of the population was slaughtered. These mass extermination events culled the European populations and made their entire groups more genetically robust, of a superior stock.

I’ll go along with that. Are we sure that the smartest people survived, though?

Besides, using common sense, there is no way Indians are dumber that American Blacks or even Hispanics.

But they are. The studies are quite clear about that.

IQ

Hispanic 90
Black    87?
Indian   81

Adjusted for all third world detriments and low-IQ Indians breeding like rabbits, Indians have average IQ’s somewhere between 94-97.

But you can’t adjust for low IQ Indians breeding like crazy. The IQ of the population is the IQ of the population. It’s the sum total of the IQ’s divided by the population. Are you trying to say that the average Indian who comes here is 94-97? You may have a point. Over here, Indians have IQ’s of 94-96. I believe even Pakistanis have IQ’s of 92, which would be a Flynn gain over the 83 IQ in Pakistan. So just moving to the UK raises the Pakistani IQ by nine points! And the Pakistanis who came to the UK were the lowest class of them all.

If you are trying to arrive at a pure genetic Indian IQ, I’m with you. What would their IQ be if they had a Western diet and upbringing?

The rest of the 95% of non-Brahmin Indians are not all low-IQ.

Yes, but their average IQ is 81, no?

Plenty of Kshatriyas and Vaishyas perform well in all fields.

Ok, but we have to look at the population as a whole. The country is a shithole in part due to an average IQ of 81, correct?

Repost: A Quick Overview of Some Types of Internet Scams

Same thing, reformatting and reposting some old posts. Hope you enjoy.

I don’t talk about it much on here, but I had a Yahoo group with over 1,200 members to fight scammers out of Nigeria and West Africa. We focused on the love scammers. These are people, often males or gangs of males, who use fake pictures of men or women, often stolen from porn or model sites, to engage in fake Internet romances with Westerners, the purpose of which is to get money out of them. In many cases, the scam can go on for years or until all of the money is drained.

Nigeria is Ground Zero for romance scamming, and Ghana is second. Many Ghanaian scammers are Nigerians. It’s also spread to Benin. These are the same scumbags who started off with the famous 419 scams and now are branching out.

They are now into romance scams, fake renter scams, fake buyer scams, fake auction buyer scams, and fake seller scams (especially beetles from the Cameroon).

The fake renter scam works something like the guy is going to rent your place but somehow needs money fronted to him. He never shows up for the room, and you lose the money.

Fake buyer scams involve the use of stolen credit cards to buy stuff in the West and have it shipped to West Africa. Merchants report that out of every 10,000 credit card requests from West Africa, not even one will be legit. The culture of lying, stealing, and general scumminess is so pervasive in West Africa that most credit card companies have banned the whole area from getting any cards. Fake buyer scams also involve overpayment schemes.

They write you a $10,000 check.

But the item is only worth $4,000.

The check is no good. You deposit it and send the $4,000 back to the guy Western Union.

3 weeks later the check goes bad and you lose $4,000.

Similar schemes involving expertly forged money orders, especially US postal money orders, are common. You cash the money order, keep 20% for yourself, and send the rest WU to West Africa.

In 3 weeks it goes bad, and now you owe $5,000 or whatever.

And the banks do want to get paid. Banks will often just cash any shitty check for you without even checking to see if it’s any good. They have actually fought legislation to require them to figure out if the check is any good before they cash it. This would be time-consuming and harm their capitalist bottom line.

Auction buyer scams are similar to overpayment scams. I believe that they also set up fake seller schemes. You send the money and the stuff never shows up.

The beetle scams were interesting. There are actually lots of guys who are so weird that they actually collect beetles. They pin them to boards and whatnot. I guess it’s more honorable than politics or pitching prime loans. Anyway, Cameroon has an incredible amount of beetles, including some of the hugest and rarest beetles on Earth. The West Africans quickly infiltrated the beetle lists on the Net and offered to sell these rare beetles. Lots of folks shelled out $100’s for them, and of course they never showed up.

The West Africans have now fanned out all over the world and operate out of many places, doing their scams. The Nigerians are notorious and hated all over Africa by their fellow Blacks for being a nation of liars, thieves, crooks, and all around scumbuckets. There are now expat Nigerian gangs in Libya, Egypt, Spain, Netherlands, the UK, Switzerland, etc.

Nigerians have swarmed in the Balearic Islands of Spain, where if you go into the cafes, it’s all Nigerians, and probably 90%+ of them are engaging in Internet crime. They are in the Gulf States, Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, and now China. Everywhere they go, the Nigerians are head over heels in crime, usually confidence games and cons.

In Nigeria itself, in many of the cafes, many to all of the people in there are criminals sitting there all day and nite trying to rip off Westerners. One of our informants saw a famous local TV newscaster who had lost his job in the cafe trying to steal from Americans.

There is now a tremendous amount of romance scamming coming out of the Philippines. They scam in the open, use their real faces and real names, and shamelessly rip off every American guy they can find. These are usually young Filipinas promising love or marriage to American males. The law enforcement system in the Philippines is terminally broken, and LE does not even bother to arrest or prosecute the scammers. Philippines is starting to seem like as much of a failed state as an African nation.

There is also a lot of Internet crime coming out of Russia, including romance scamming. The romance scammers are the Russian Mafia operating out of Mari-El Republic. Dating sites are saturated with fake Russian chicks promising to marry you. They hire college students, male and female, to write letters to the Western male suckers and draw them in. Female coeds man the phones 24-7. When you call up your Russian lover girl, Natasha answers the phone and pretends to be whoever she needs to be. End of the scam is she needs airfare to come marry you. You fork it over and she never shows.

The Russians to their credit have busted some of the scammers. There have been several arrest roll-ups, and hundreds of crooks have been arrested, but the scamming goes on. With the return of capitalism, Russia has turned into one of the world’s most horrible epicenters of Organized Crime, Internet Crime, scams, and ripoffs.

There are also many scams, including romance, rental, and auction scams, coming out of Eastern Europe. The return of capitalism has also turned much of this area into crime-flooded pestholes, and Organized Crime practically runs the show in many places. Little is known about these criminals, but the auction scams are mostly run by “Romanians.” Investigation revealed that all or nearly all of these “Romanians” were actually Gypsies, possibly the most criminal ethnic group on the planet.

The Languages of Northeastern Spain: Aragonese, Catalan, and Occitan

Gus Love: No, the Aragonese language looks different. I might put up a sample sometime. This is Catalan. Occitan looks different but I’m not sure how different or in what way. I’ve seen quite a bit of Occitan writing but that was a while back.

This is Catalan. Occitan looks different but I’m not sure how different or in what way. I’ve seen quite a bit of Occitan writing but that was a while back. There is a type of Occitan, the western half of which is nothing but Catalan. The eastern half of that Occitan language is not fully intelligible with Catalan. This is the Occitan language that is spoken across the border from Catalonia. I am not talking about Northern Catalan or French Catalan. That’s also spoken across the border but that’s more over by the coast.

No, the Aragonese language looks different. Aragonese looks much more Castillian and it’s not nearly as Frenchified as Catalan. The Kingdom of Aragon never came under the influence of France. Aragonese is spoken in the Pyrenees on the west side of those mountains. On the French side it’s not even French. It’s Occitan. For instance, Aranese Occitan is intelligible with Comminghese Occitan across the border in France. The Pyrenees are very high mountains, and they probably served as a barrier to French influence.

There were different lects of Macro-Spanish spoken in the various kingdoms in France. Aragonese was spoken in the Kingdom of Aragon. Asturian was spoken in the Kingdom of Asturias. Castillian split away from all of them around 1100 and started expanding south from its homeland in Cantabria on the north coast. It was a crapshoot fora while which kingdom would come to rule Spain and supplant the others. It turns out that the kingdom of Castille and Leon won the contest but it could just as easily have been the kingdoms of Aragon or Asturias.

Asturian-Leonese has been split from Castillian for 900 years. Aragonese split off much later around 1600. It used to be spoken in all of Aragon but Castillian took over Southern and Central Aragon, and Aragonese was relegated to the hinterlands of the inaccessible Pyrenees Mountains where it still holds out. There are children coming to school as Aragonese monolinguals in one town to this very day.

 

The French Revolution: When the Battle Lines of the Modern Right and Left Were Drawn

Transformer: Hey Robert, I want to know what is the truth about the French Revolution? Conservatives criticize it for being a Communist, but did they have legitimate concerns? I sometimes read rightwing websites to get a feel of their point of view. I would like your response.

https://www.stormfront.org/forum/t1344928/

I haven’t read that piece, but I am certain that the fascists at Stormfront think of the French Revolution as the beginning of the Apocalypse. And in a lot of ways, the Revolution is seen as “apocalyptic” in terms of setting the stage for modern politics.

It was absolutely not a Communist revolution, but in a lot of ways, the Modern Western Left was born with Robespierre and all modern Western Leftists are his children. The Modern Western Right sees the French Revolution as their bete noire. It was much more extreme than the American Revolution.

The Left opinion is that it was a good idea until it got bloody and started murdering people like crazy. Then it got bad.

Conservatives starting with Edmund Burke himself have condemned the French Revolution as the ultimate in evil. Burke wrote a famous tract on the French Revolution. It’s considered a classic of conservatism. Burke may be seen as the father of modern conservatism, and all Western, particularly American, conservatives consider themselves the Children of Burke. One of the forefathers of modern fascism, De Maistre, also cut his teeth on tracts condemning the French Revolution.

The conservative movement sees the French Revolution as “when it all started going down hill.”

From the Left, the alternative is to twofold, one either supports (critically) French Revolution or you support the “ancien regime.” Clearly, modern conservatism is all about resurrecting the ancien regime that was overthrown in 1798. And the modern Left in part has been all about overthrowing the various forms of “ancien regime” that exist the world over.

Both the modern Left and Right in the West think of the French Revolution as “when the battle lines of the modern Right and Left were first drawn.”

The Last Native Speaker of Latin Died in 1938, only 80 Years Ago!

This man was a famous Professor of Latin at a prominent university such as Harvard, Yale, Oxford, or Cambridge. He was born ~90 years before into a “royalist” family in Budapest, Hungary and he was raised speaking Latin and I’m not sure what else as a first language. Both of his parents spoke Latin and Latin was the usual language of the home. He said that around 1850 in this part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Latin was still fairly widely spoken as a native language among this very wealthy elite cohort of people with royal blood. Perhaps they lived in castles, who knows? You may be able to find more on him in Wiki.

I know that ~1850, in Zagreb, Croatia, if you went into a bookstore, most of the books would be in German and Latin. Few people could read and write then, and Kaykavian was actually the official language of Croatia as official “Serbo-Croatian” – really Shtokavian – was not even created until decades hence by Vuk based on the Shtokavian dialect of Eastern Herzegovina. The academic journals in this part of the world, especially the former Yugoslavia, to this day often have Latin names.

Latin is the official language of the Vatican, but I think it is only used for writing. I’ve heard it’s not spoken. Also it is only learned as a second language there.

Alt Left: Shut Up, Virginia Giuffre

Serial liar, faker, and professional victim Virginia Giuffre has filed a fake lawsuit against Prince Andrew, lying like a bitch that Andrew raped and sexually abused her repeatedly when she was underage at 17 years old.

Problem? Nobody raped anyone and Virginia (The Liar) Giuffre never got raped one time.

I suppose you could argue that Andrew may have committed statutory rape, but that’s not rape at all. Instead it’s simply illegal intercourse.

Second problem? Virginia Giuffre is a whore. A lowdown, lying, scamming prostitute of the lowest variety, lower even than most disgusting whores, and that’s pretty low.

What happened?

Giuffre decided at age 17 that her goal in life was to be a whore! That’s right, a prostitute. Such a noble calling. She somehow got in with Epstein and Maxwell’s blackmail ring and she was basically offered a job working as a little teenie whore for Epstein’s Mossad spying blackmail ring. Of course, since her life dream was to be a lowly prostitute, she jumped at the chance.

Epstein et al were soon pimping her out to famous people, except it’s hard to call it pimping because they let her keep all the money.

The one famous incident with Prince Andrew occurred in the Virgin Islands. Giuffre was paid a measly $15,000 to have sex (excuse me, to get raaaaaaped) by Andrew. She reportedly had lots of fun screwing the guy, since by all accounts she was a little teen nympho slut.

Problem? 17 year old Virginia was not underage! She was legal in the Virgin Islands, perfectly legal fresh teen pussy.

Now we move on to the other fake charges.

Turns out she had sex with Andrew several more times in New York, Florida, New Mexico and the UK.

Problem? 17 year old Virginia was perfectly legal teen snatch in New York, New Mexico and the UK. No rape. No statutory rape. No any kind of rape, except in her ditzy teen whore brain.

Now, moving on to Florida, we do have another matter. If she had sex with Andrew in Florida, she would have been underage, because the Age of Consent there is 18. But notice she was legal and of age in four different states or countries and illegal and underage in only one state? Big deal! That’s barely even a crime.

Statutory rape of a 17 year old girl is a garbage crime anyway. 17 year old girls are perfectly legal to fuck by any adult, even a 90 year old man, in most of the world. They’re only illegal in a few backwards places like Florida.

It’s perfectly reasonable to set an AOC at 16 or 17. Most of the world has it at ~16. Most of Europe has it at 15! There have been absolutely zero problems reported in any of these places by setting the AOC at 15-17.

Now setting an AOC at 15 is sketchy in the US because we are too backwards, puritanical, and weird to handle that low of an AOC. Europeans, being civilized, can cope with it but Americans are uncivilized backwards boors and sex-hating super-prudes, so we can’t deal.

However, there is an argument for making a Romeo and Juliet clause for 15 year old girls. In many states they are legal for men up to 18 or 19. Colorado is particularly reasonable in this regard, as 15 year old girls are legal for men up to age 24. I dated a lot of 15 year old girls as a boy and for few years into adulthood. They’re horny as Hell and from the point of view of a young man 18-21, they seem quite mature, about as mature as you are.

Now the problem is that wherever you put that AOC, men are going to start fucking those girls. Put it at 17? Men will fuck 17 year old girls. Put it at 16? Men will screw 16 year old girls. Put it at 15? Men will gleefully bonk 15 year old girls.

And if you put it at 13 or 14, men will jump on 13 and 14 year old girls. I’m not entirely comfortable with that, though sex with 14 year old girls and 18-21 year old men doesn’t bother me. The thing about this sort of sex is it seems a lot more ok when the man is very young because after all, college boys and young men have been screwing high school girls forever. It’s so natural it’s almost set in stone. But as the man gets older than, say, 25, a lot of people start getting a lot less comfortable with it for all sorts of reasons. And as he gets older and older, it gets less and less ok. This is fine with me and I understand people’s distaste for this sort of thing.

I’d like to keep the 13 and 14 year old girls illegal for most adults, though we definitely need a Romeo and Juliet clause for both of them. I’m not sure where to put the limits though.

I met some 14 year old girls at the store a while back. They were fooling around like teenagers. I looked at them real close and I thought, “You know what? These girls need to be protected from us men. And even more so, we men need to be protected from those girls!” We both need to be protected from each other. A good way to do that is with an AOC law because most men beyond age ~21 will start to seriously think twice about underage girls and men significantly older than that will avoid them as if they’re radioactive. Which they are, in a sense. Teenage girls are dangerous!

I think 13-15 year old girls ought to be legal for boys 13-17 though at the very least. We really need to stop putting kids in jail and on sex offender lists for having sex with each other. Guess what? Teenagers have a sex drive, often a raging one. And many, many of them engage in sexual behaviors and even have intercourse before age 18. It’s as common as dirt.

Now we do run into problems with Andrew and Giuffre due to the fact that Giuffre was more than just a teen slut. In fact, she was an out an out real thing teenage prostitute! What a noble, morally elevated female!

Now the problem is that in most of the US at least, it was perfectly legal to screw Giuffre for free, but automagically, one you pay her for screwing you, you’ve committed a crime. You can screw them all you want, but you just can’t pay them for it! I sort of like this law. We should extend to all women, not just the teenies. It sure would save us men an awful lot of money!

Now, buying a teenage prostitute under age 18 is illegal in the US. It doesn’t strike me as much of a crime because there are many enthusiastic schoolgirl prostitutes. But I don’t see how you make it legal either. Make it a misdemeanor. Instead, it’s a serious crime and worse that, it’s somehow or other sex trafficking!

Now sex trafficking is a completely abused term once the US Justice Department got a hold of it after Congress made a retarded law in the midst of a Sex Panic. Sex trafficking used to be pretty serious. It meant more or less sex slaves. These women are out and out sex slaves, being imprisoned or locked into service by evil pimps, mostly men. A lot are literally locked in and can’t escape while they are ordered to have sex with man after man.

It’s really gross and it’s a very serious crime. And the truth is that most pimping probably is trafficking. If the prostitutes are free to leave the pimp, it’s not, but when are they ever free to leave? Not real often. Pimps threaten to harm, hurt, or kill any prostitute who leaves their harem, so most prostitutes with pimps feel locked into them. Obviously, pimps are one of the dirtiest aspects of this dirty business.

However! The Justice Department decided to somehow include all underage teen prostitutes under the rubric of “trafficking,” which is quite dubious. I don’t mind a crime called Prostituting a Minor, but it sure as hell isn’t “trafficking.” Even worse, any man who patronizes an underage teen prostitute is himself somehow guilty of trafficking! You paid this 17 year old whore for sex, did the deed, and walked out. Turns out you just committed an act of sex trafficking! That’s absolutely ridiculous, but that’s the crazy new law.

As expected, the feminists took the ball, ran away with it, and were never seen again. The feminists have somehow decided that not only are sex slaves and teeny prostitutes being “trafficked,” but in fact, every single woman who is engaged in prostitution is engaged in sex trafficking! More properly, since feminists insist that women have agency, they are “being trafficked (by others, basically men).”

Notice how when feminists talk, women never have any agency? That means that they’re basically children and not responsible for any of their actions. Women never do anything. Everything that happens to a woman is not because she did it because I guess she can’t do anything, but instead it got done to her by someone else (typically an evil man).

I would say that according to this silly logic, prostitutes in business for themselves, which is lots of them, are apparently trafficking themselves! But feminists logically say this is not possible, and I agree. Instead they are argue that prostitutes in business for themselves are being trafficked by the male customers who purchase their services! So every time a man buys a whore, he’s “trafficking” her. Ridiculous, huh?

So it appears that the morally upright Ms. Giuffre, now older, wiser, and probably a lot less horny, was never raped even one time, ever. Statutory rape doesn’t count. It’s a bit hard to argue that she was being trafficked, but Maxwell and Epstein caught her trying to leave them a couple of times and brought her back and threatened her. Ok, now they’re trafficking her, so she was trafficked some of the time.

Giuffre was working very profitably for as a prostitute for the rich and famous from ages 17-23. So for most of her career, from ages 18-23, she was an adult, a grown woman. Giuffre claims that during this entire time, she was being “sexually abused” or “abused.” She never had real sex the whole time. Instead she had some weird abuse masquerading as sex. Are you sure you didn’t like it, Ms. Giuffre? A lot of women like that sort of thing, you know.

“Sexual abuse” is a term that has been tortured, raped, and murdered by sex-panicked morons for a very long time now. It used to refer to child molestation, which involves adults and children under 13. From 13-17, depending on the laws, there is no sexual abuse. There’s just statutory rape or illegal intercourse. It’s not possibly to sexually abuse a teenage girl and you certainly cannot abuse a grown woman because no matter how infantile her silly little brain is, she’s still an adult, at least chronologically. Sexual abuse literally means child molestation and I don’t mind referring to child molestation and sexual abuse. It’s a logical way to see it.

Somehow now teenage girls with ravenous, nymphomaniacal sex drives get “sexually abused” a good part of the time when they have sex, even when it’s consensual. In other words, the term for child molesting got inflated by dumbshits all the way to teenage girls and from there all the way to so-called adult women, assuming there even are in an emotional sense.

It’s bullshit. It’s nonsense.

Poor Virginia suffered through the horrific ordeal of getting paid $15,000 to fuck a hot, sexy older man. It boggles the mind. No doubt this indignity was inflicted on the poor virginal Virginia endless times. How did she ever recover from getting paid $15K to get laid by some hot dude? Obviously, she’s a survivor. How she survived such a horror is simply beyond me.

Poor girl! Girls are crying! Poor Virginia! Virginia is crying! Poor women! Women are crying!

She never got sexually abused even one time except in her tiny little pea brain. And of course she never got raped even one time except her the fever dreams of her mind. Now she may well have been trafficked.

Virginia, I will take time out for abusing your sorry ass here to tell you that I am very sorry that these low lifes basically imprisoned you as a sex slave. I really am truly sorry.

And I hope whatever damage this may have caused you – and it may well have done so – you are able to get over it and move it. I’m sorry you got taken back and threatened when you tried to run away. At that point, Epstein and Maxwell were trafficking you. That’s a serious crime, and I hope you can make peace with it, and I mean that with all my heart, dear.

Now that I am done addressing Ms. Giuffre, back to the story.

95% of Virginian Giuffre’s story is a pathetic joke. It’s not even true. She’s just another silly bitch trying to milk us men for everything we’ve got like so many of her sisters. I hope she decides to do something more productive and dignified with her life than act like a baby, be a permanent victim, and make a living scamming men.

Alt Left: Sources for the Israel Attacked Beirut with a Nuclear Bomb Story

Claudius Americanus:

Hi Robert. Have you got any sources? Thanks.

“There was little radiation because those bombs give off hardly any radiation anyway. However, 10 hours after the attack, the UN Agency for Nuclear Arms Control facility in Sicily recorded a large radiation spike consistent with either a nuclear bomb or a failed nuclear reactor. 10 hours is about how long it would take for that spike to drift over to Italy.

The governments of Syria, Lebanon, Greece, and Italy have all privately confirmed that Beirut was attacked by Israel. All except Syria said it was with a nuclear bomb. Syria said the attack was with ‘some new type of weapon.’”

It’s all from Gordon Duff at Veterans Today. Keep in mind that I know Gordon and Jim Dean and we have corresponded with me. I saw a copy of the readout from the UN Nuclear Agency station in Sicily, and it shows a huge spike all right. At first I thought it was faked evidence because the spike took so long to show up and everyone said it would have been detected immediately, but later others said that 10 hours later is about how long it would take for the spike to drift over to Sicily.

Gordon also confirmed it was a nuclear bomb via Bob Smith, former nuclear arms control inspector for the UN and particle physicist. I sent an email to Bob to try to get him to confirm it personally from him, but he didn’t write back.

Syrian intelligence confirmed it via the Voltaire Network. I guess they have connections there.

Gordon confirmed it via Lebanese military and intelligence, whom he spoke to. He also confirmed it via President Auon.

In addition, he confirmed it via the Pentagon. He said the Pentagon originally contacted him to ask what happened. Did you see the next day when Trump said it was an attack, not a fertilizer explosion?

Gordon said it was confirmed by the Italian and Greek governments. I’m not sure if he spoke to them or not. He definitely has connections all right in Executive Branch, the Pentagon, and in the Middle East.

He said he first learned about it when Lebanese intelligence contacted him and told him what it was.

Some team went in there with counters eight days later but supposedly they didn’t find anything, but I’m not sure how much is left at eight days. Gordon’s team from VT flew into Lebanon a day or two later with radiation counters, etc. but they were denied access to the site.

Gordon said Lebanese intelligence told him the decision had been made by the Lebanese government, Hezbollah, and Iran to go with the fake fertilizer story, which literally could not have happened. Hezbollah has no way to respond to nuclear bombs and neither does the Lebanese government or Iran. All of them, especially Hezbollah, felt it would demoralize the Lebanese people and Hezbollah supporters if they said they got attacked by a nuke, and it would promote defeatism among the people. So both sides agreed to the fake cover story.

I know he’s sketchy on other stuff, but this time it looks like Gordon hit the ball out of the park.

There’s no way that anything other than a nuclear bomb causes that white-hot mushroom shaped cloud. I’ve only seen clouds like that in photos of nuclear tests and the Hiroshima bomb. Also, witnesses said it felt like their faces were melting. Only a nuclear blast feels like that.

We know it was a bombing attack. There are videos showing people pointing at the planes overhead and a blast shortly after. Over 1,000 witnesses in Beirut said they heard the planes coming in. There are also videos where you can hear the jet coming from 10-15 seconds before the blast. The camerawoman says, “What’s that?” as the jet roar comes in. I don’t know my jets very well, but that sounds like like an F-16 to me. It reminded of those Blue Angels flight shows. That’s the only place I’ve ever heard anything that sounds like that. When those jets come in for a bombing run, there a loud roar that increases in volume. Nothing else sounds like that.

So we know Israel dropped two bombs on the port. The only thing we don’t know is if it was a nuke. But look at that massive crater. That’s in solid rock. The only way you blow a hole in solid rock is with a nuclear bomb. Anything else you drop on solid explodes upwards and won’t penetrate the rock. Otherwise, if you want to blow up rock, you have a drill a hole deep down inside the rock and set off the charge down below.

There’s no way an amount of ammonium nitrate 100X that size blows a hole that wide. Forget it. And there was no way to set it off. Notice the jet fuel got added later when people pointed out that the fertilizer doesn’t go off until you mix it with fuel oil? All of a sudden it turns out that the fertilizer was stored with a huge amount of fuel oil! See how the story changed? That’s how you know it’s fake. In all these fake attacks and false flags, the story keeps changing. People start pointing out the holes in the story, and then the story starts changing to fill in the holes. In an actual attack, the story doesn’t change all the time.

Syria said it was a “new weapon,” and they thought it was the same one that Israel dropped on Homs Province in Syria during a battle with Al Qaeda. I saw a video of that blast, and the cloud looked exactly the same.

I think all these bunker busters must be nuclear in some sense because only a nuclear device can penetrate through stone or rock like that to get down to the bunkers.

I’m also thinking that stupid MOAB bomb might be nuclear in some way. I don’t see how you get a blast that big from a conventional explosive. Everyone within one half mile radius gets deaf from that bomb. It also penetrates underground in mountains. And six months after they dropped that thing, surrounding villagers had strange ailments and all crops planted after the blast were failing. That MOAB is a WMD. It needs to be banned. You can’t allow weapons that deafen the enemy soldiers! WTF. Weapons that render agricultural land infertile? WTF. Weapons that cause weird diseases in nearby villagers? WTF. Ordinary bombs don’t do any of those things.

Alt Left: Another Look at the Israeli Nuclear Bombing of the Port of Beirut

The (((coincidence marks))) in this piece refers to Israel and its supporters, not ordinary Jewish people in the Diaspora who are not involved in affairs of the Israeli state and should not be blamed for its predations. Are the Jews in the US squatting in Palestine, killing people and doing all manner of sleazy dirty things all the time? Of course not. So why are they are problem. I have a beef with the Israeli state, not with Jewish people in general.

There are almost no limits to what the Israelis will do, as we saw in the nuclear bomb attack on the Beirut port a year ago. The port was attacked with a mini-nuke by an Israeli F-16 overhead that was witnessed and heard by thousands of witnesses.

There was little radiation because those bombs give off hardly any radiation anyway. However, 10 hours after the attack, the UN Agency for Nuclear Arms Control facility in Sicily recorded a large radiation spike consistent with either a nuclear bomb or a failed nuclear reactor. 10 hours is about how long it would take for that spike to drift over to Italy.

The governments of Syria, Lebanon, Greece, and Italy have all privately confirmed that Beirut was attacked by Israel. All except Syria said it was with a nuclear bomb. Syria said the attack was with “some new type of weapon.” They compared it to another mini-nuke nuclear bomb Israel had dropped over Syria in Homs a few years back when acting as the air force for Al Qaeda while it was fighting the Syrian government.

I have seen the cloud from that explosion, and it can only be a nuclear bomb. Further, a look at the mushroom cloud indicates that this bomb was similar to the one dropped on Beirut. So Israel is regularly dropping nuclear bombs on Arab countries! Remember what I said about Jews having no morals? Well, there you go.

Sources say that now even the US government, including all members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, have agreed that Israel attacked Beirut with a nuclear bomb. Even Trump was told that Beirut was an attack by warplanes, a fact that he repeated to the media.

The nuclear bomb attack was timed to occur in tandem with the (((fake UN investigation))) that convicted Hezbollah of assassinating President Hariri, although Hezbollah has now proven that the attack was done by an Israeli drone (possibly with another mini-nuke) in order to frame Hezbollah. There was an Israeli drone directly over the site of the attack for one hour up until the attack. It left shortly afterwards.

The grain silo at the port was destroyed and this was the obvious target. It contained a month’s worth of grain for the country. So Israel wiped out all the grain in Lebanon. This was quickly followed by several (((US))) attacks on grain silos in Eastern Syria. There were also (((attacks against food warehouses))) in Southern Iraq and a (((huge fire at an Iranian shopping mall))) in (((Dubai))) caught fire. These all appear to be Mossad plots. Linking all of these attacks (most of them against food supplies) is an (((attack on Iran and Iran’s supporters))) – the Syrian government, the Shia in Southern Iraq and Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Shortly before the attack, Israeli president Netanyahu had given a presentation pinpointing the precise Ground Zero of the attack as the site of a Hezbollah missile depot. Netanyahu pledged to attack the site. After the attack, sources in Israel along with (((UAE))) and (((Saudi))) intelligence put out the (((fake story))) that a Hezbollah missile depot had blown up. However, Hezbollah does not store missiles at the port and never has. Also that part of the port is controlled by the Lebanese Forces, a Christian fascist force that hates Hezbollah. No way would they have let Hezbollah store missiles there. This fake story was also intended to get the Lebanese people to rise up against Hezbollah.

Nevertheless, the whole world suckers has swallowed the (((cover story))) lie that was put out about 2,300 pounds of ammonium nitrate blowing up, except that AN is inert and dirt is more likely to blow up than AN. It’s pretty pathetic that the whole world has been (((scammed))) like this, but it’s par for the course.

Later, when informed that AN doesn’t blow up without being carefully mixed with fuel oil, a new fake story went out that the AN stash had been stored next to a huge amount of (((fuel oil))). See how the story changed? You can tell about these false flags and fake attacks because the story keeps changing. In a real attack, the story doesn’t change every few days. The spark needed to set it off was from a (((fireworks factory))) that never existed.

In fact, Lebanese intelligence reported that there was no AN at all in that warehouse. Instead, there was nothing but dirt and rocks. The entire affair was a Mossad plot dating back up to 10 years leading to this point involving a (((ship))) full of fake AN (really dirt and rocks) that had been in a number of ports, including one in Georgia where they loaded up with AN, except that AN is not produced in Georgia. Lebanese intelligence discovered that everything about the ship was fake, including the (((Russian captain))). Everything on the ship’s record had been (((faked and forged))).

After the (((fake fertilizer))) was unloaded, it sat in a warehouse for a decade. Meanwhile another plot was hatched to protest the (((AN))) being stored at the port as a hazard. Someone in the Lebanese government or courts must have been paid off because they kept passing the buck on getting rid of the (((fake fertilizer))). This was a set up for an “incompetent government allows horrible accident to occur” scenario.

I’m thinking these officials or court officers were (((paid off))) somehow. The whole thing was probably done in tandem with the fascist (((Lebanese Forces))) who controlled the port. They must have known that the fake fertilizer was nothing but dirt and rocks. However, the (((LF))) is the most pro-Israel group in Lebanon, but they are primarily motivated by mutual hatred of Hezbollah.

Of course, everyone knows that Lebanon is crawling with Israeli spies and Israeli assets. They get caught all the time. Hezbollah is always finding them. I guess a bit of (((money))) goes a long way or recruiting assets is easy due to a mutual enemy.

On the anniversary of the nuclear attack, the (((LF))) is leading the charge to use the attack to try to get rid of the Hezbollah-dominated government on grounds of incompetence. In truth, Hezbollah is one of the least corrupt forces in Lebanon and the LF are one of the most, but never mind the logic. Soon after the attack, the (((US))) and (((Macron)))’s (((France))) staged a (((color revolution))) that managed to overthrow the government with a mere 2,000 rioters. (((Macron))), who by the way was put into power by the British (((Rothschilds))), flew into Beirut and demanded that Lebanon form a new government without Hezbollah or else.

The government refused to do this, so the (((US))) retaliated and put massive sanctions on all of Lebanon’s banks on the basis that they were all moving Hezbollah money. That was true of course, but Hezbollah is a huge force in Lebanon with massive influence.

The sanctioning of all of Lebanon’s banks has completely collapsed the economy of the country. The (((US))) did this with the purpose of making things so miserable in Lebanon that the people would rise up and throw out Hezbollah. As it is, Hezbollah and allied forces control 65% of the Legislature, while the anti-Hezbollah faction of half of the Christians and most of the Sunni Muslims controls 35%.

Clearly, Lebanon’s voters voted for a Hezbollah government. Although (((US))) sanctions wrecked the country, the (((US))) is predictably using the wrecked economy to attack the government by blaming the government for all of the hardship. This is what the US does every time it destroys an economy with sanctions. Put on sanctions, destroy the economy, and then blamed the attacked government for the economic wreckage. It’s obviously a gigantic lie and scam, but apparently most Americans either don’t care or are too dumb to figure it out.

On the anniversary of the fake AN explosion, the LF have been organizing riots and violence all over Lebanon to use the fake incident (which they were probably involved in (((faking))) themselves) to try to overthrow the government.

Interview with an Anarchist in Haifa about the Palestinian Resistance against Israeli Occupation

From an interesting anarchist site here.

During the last couple of months, the situation in Palestine has escalated into a generalized uprising against Zionism, colonialism and apartheid. All of Israel’s and the local far-right’s attempts to crush the spirit of the Palestinian people have resulted in a unified mass resistance, for the first time in decades. The following text is a ground level report from an occupied land, discussing the course of the insurrection, as well as the counter-insurgency tactics, and Hamas’ role in the events.

For starters, could we have some info about you? As it would help us to better understand from what position you are talking.

I’m an anarchist based in Haifa, Occupied Palestine, so-called Israel. I live in an historical Palestinian city that faced a massive attack and terrorist aggression by Zionist militias in 1948 aimed at expelling the local indigenous population and colonizing the land. Since then, the Palestinians that remain live under an ethnic supremacist and apartheid system, and the refugees abroad are still aspiring to return. I come from a settler Jewish family, arriving on this land during the ’80s, and once I got the facts straight, I knew which position I should take.

Once again, bad news spread around the world from the Palestinian and Israeli territories. In a few words, what happened there?

We had a rough few months here. Not sure exactly where to start, but it’s good to concentrate on Jerusalem/Al-Quds that, as in many other uprisings, was the trigger. During April, settlers and cops provoked people in East Jerusalem, the Palestinian part of town, especially in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and the Al-Aqsa compound.

In order to get the background you need, know that from the Zionist occupation of 1948 to 1967, East Jerusalem was under the control of Jordan. Some of the neighborhoods were populated by Palestinian refugees escaping the Zionist invasion and Nakba of 1948. Sheikh Jarrah is one of them.

After the occupation of 1967, the Zionist state celebrated the “reunification” of Jerusalem each year, now a national holiday. Meanwhile, Jewish settlers arrived at the neighborhoods in East Jerusalem, much like the rest of the occupied West Bank, with clear plans of colonization and Judaization of the area.

In Sheikh Jarrah, an old Palestinian neighborhood in East Jerusalem, settler organizations engaged in legal battles against local residents in the Israeli apartheid court system in efforts to evict local Palestinians and replace them with Jewish settlers, claiming the property used to be owned by Jews. A few families had already been evicted during 2008, 2009, and 2017, and now, a new court ruling puts an additional eight families under a threat of eviction, which is roughly 500 people. Jewish settlements exist in other neighborhoods in East Jerusalem as well, such as Silwan and Abu Tor.

In the Al-Aqsa compound, one of the holiest places to Islam, Israel placed barriers in Bab Al-‘Amud, one of the entrances to the mosque, in the beginning on the month of Ramadan in an effort to limit the number of worshipers and restrict movement. This act provoked outrage and days of rioting ensued in Bab Al-‘Amud and the main streets in East Jerusalem. The barriers were eventually removed.

Meanwhile, tensions in the city had escalated. Some Palestinian youth posted TikTok videos of them attacking Jews around the city, and Jewish far-right gangs mobilized to attack people suspected of being Arabs in the city center. Lehava, a far-right organization, led a racist ‘Death to Arabs’ march from the city center to Bab Al-‘Amud during the riots and were blocked by police on their way.

On May 10, during “Jerusalem Day”, the national holiday celebrating the occupation of the eastern part of the city in 1967, the annual ‘flag parade’ took place in the city, and right-wing participants were expected to enter the Muslim quarter in the old city and shout racist slurs under police protection as they do every year.

Israeli police invaded the Al-Aqsa mosque, and in the intense riots, dozens of cops and hundreds of protestors were injured. Around 5 pm, Hamas announced that Israel has 1 hour to evict all of its police forces from Sheikh Jarrah and Al-Aqsa compound. As this deadline passed, Hamas launched rockets into Israel, reaching Jerusalem. Israel in response announced a military operation in Gaza, and began to bombard the Gaza Strip with airstrikes in a massacre and destruction that lasted 12 days, until a ceasefire was reached on May 21.

Meanwhile, a generalized uprising took place amongst the Palestinians, including ’48 Palestinians living in the territories occupied in 1948 (i.e., so-called “Israel”), ’67 Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza, and refugee communities abroad. A united insurrection, with days of riots in Palestinian, Israeli, and mixed cities and villages, refugee camps in nearby countries, and Israeli embassies and consulates everywhere. A general strike was also announced on May 18 involving all of the Palestinians for the first time in decades.

What are the important facts or basics we need to know about the history of this conflict? Should we call it a conflict, actually?

It is a conflict as much as an attack by a nuclear superpower with one of the most advanced armies in the world backed by the strongest state on earth against a poor occupied civilian population without an army could be characterized as a “conflict”. This is an aggression, the ‘two sides’ are the oppressor and the oppressed, the colonizer and the colonized.

The asymmetrical nature of the situation is so inherent, it’s completely ridiculous in my opinion that people struggle with ‘complexities’ while entire neighborhoods are being erased in Gaza by Israeli military airstrikes, killing 250 people in less than two weeks while Gazans have primitive rockets, most of them falling in open fields or being neutralized by Iron Dome- Israel’s defense system. The 12 people killed on the Israeli side came from mostly from the lower classes of society – mainly migrant workers and even Palestinians, as was the case in the village of Dahamash, near Ramle.

To really understand the true nature of this ‘conflict’ one must understand the inherently racist and colonialist nature of Zionism. As the Zionist occupation armies invaded this land in 1948, it was rich with culture. In what’s known as the Nakba, literally ‘catastrophe’ in Arabic, entire villages were erased, massacres were committed, and hundreds of thousands of refugees driven away off their land. In the conquest for the Jewish homeland, a massive campaign of ethnic cleansing was committed. The indigenous population abroad in refugee camps in nearby countries and all over the world are still aspiring to return.

Those that managed to stay were subjected to realities of colonialism, racism, and discrimination. Laws such as the Absentee Property Act ruled that land and property of refugees fleeing Zionist aggression is now state property. The newly arrived Jewish immigrants were housed in those empty neighborhoods and towns. Military rule was imposed on the Palestinians who remained in Israel from 1948 to 1966 that imposed land restrictions, caused their expulsion from villages, and subjected them to curfews, detentions, and various other discriminatory actions, all with one aim: to increase the Jewish presence and cleanse the land of Palestinians as much as possible.

After the occupation of 1967, unlike the one of 1948, Israel decided not to annex the West Bank and Gaza Strip to its official territory but to keep it in an unclear ‘temporary status’. Even though the Israeli military control basically every facet of the Palestinians’ life there, they are not Israeli citizens, are under military law, and have no rights. The Jewish settlers living in settlements nearby are full Israeli citizens and are under civilian law. Israeli settlements divide the West Bank into small cantons, and the separation wall since 2003 is another tool of land theft. The wall does not go through the 1967 “Green Line” border, but goes inside villages, in many cases annexing land in favor of nearby Jewish settlements.

Since 2007, the Gaza Strip has been under siege as a tool of collective punishment for Hamas’ rule over the area. Despite Israel’s claim of withdrawal from the Gaza Strip in 2005, it still controls its borders, water, and airspace. Gaza, one of the densest populated areas in the world with a population of over 2 million, has already been bombed numerous times in military operations (massacres) in recent years, leading to thousands of casualties and a deteriorating humanitarian catastrophe.

Israel is the leading front of settler-colonialism currently in the world, one of the ugliest examples of nation building as a way of solving the problems of minorities within the boundaries of the state. There won’t be an end in sight without decolonization, return of the refugees, and a truly shared and equal existence without Zionism and apartheid. The time to start building the basis for such a future is now.

How do the Palestinian people live and/or survive? Is this apartheid taking the scale of an ethnic cleansing or a genocide? What is HAMAS’ role?

Hundreds of people are facing eviction in East Jerusalem. Gaza is in ruins, is still under a siege, and is the largest open prison in the world. Total devastation and human tragedy. 250 were killed during the latest Israeli aggression. Clean water is scarce. Health facilities were damaged, including the only lab in Gaza for testing Covid-19 cases. The pandemic is on the rise. Electricity hours are limited. Tens of thousands are displaced with no home to come back to. Unemployment and poverty are exploding.

Inside so-called Israel, Palestinians are facing an intense state terror campaign, aimed at repressing any dissent and punishing those willing to resist. About 2,000 were arrested so far in the protests this month, with more arrests expected. In the West Bank, settlements and a racist separation wall continues to divide the land into small cantons, annex lands from Palestinian villages, and make life unbearable. The refugees are still unable to return.

Palestine has been experiencing an ongoing, uninterrupted ethnic cleansing campaign since 1948. The Nakba never ended. One settler in the Eastern Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan made it very clear: “We won’t stop until East Jerusalem becomes like West Jerusalem. Jewish. The Palestinians have no place in this vision.”

But despite all of the hardship, people are still resisting. The Palestinians stood fast during the last uprising, proved their unity, and fought the Zionist state bravely, despite all the attempts to divide them and crush their spirit. The revolt proved to be courageous and uncontrollable. None of the youth fighting the police in Palestinian and mixed cities by erecting barricades and defending against fascist invasion were obedient to any party or political faction. The new generation of fighters on the street are immune to the pacification efforts from the regular collaborator’s forces, in the form of political parties, NGOs, and respectable community and religious ‘leaders’.

Hamas’ role in the story is exactly what the “Palestinian leadership” did during every wave of popular uprising: take over the situation and kill the  appeal of mass insurrection. Just like the P.L.O. (Palestine Liberation Organization) during the first Intifada, once the militarist militias took over, the ‘professional revolutionaries’, the people became passive spectators of their own ‘liberation’. During the insurrection, the focus turned quickly to rockets launched in Gaza flying over Israeli cities, and the riots and protests largely died out. One can’t help but feel that Hamas interrupted the birth of a popular mass movement in the inner cities of the occupation that wasssssssssssssssssssssssssssss capable of creating real damage.

What about the Israelis? How do they react in this condition? Is there any far-right movement in society? Had Netanyahu the support of the people?

During the last uprising, there was a big far-right anti-Palestinian mobilization with fascist lynch mobs attacking Palestinians. In a now-infamous incident in Bat Yam, racist lynch mobs that tried to reach Jaffa rioted, smashed windows of businesses owned by Arabs, and attacked an Arab driver, all caught on live television. The police were not present. In Haifa, they stormed Palestinian neighborhoods, attacked passengers, damaged cars, threw stones at houses, and shouted racist slurs.

In Lydda, extremist settlers from the West Bank came to the city armed with guns despite the police announcing curfew in the city in the early days of the uprising and shot people, threw stones, set stores on fire, and attacked mosques and cemeteries. In a few cases the police stood by and did nothing. There is even documentation of them throwing stones at Palestinians from police lines. Those pogroms are well documented, but there are significantly more Palestinians arrested than far-right Jewish fascists.

To get into Israeli fascism and the local far-right movement would be quite a lengthy endeavor, let me just say the working class here is generally very right-wing and that Zionism has created a monster I’m not sure it can control. They are allowed to freely attack Palestinians to suppress generalized uprisings but have to disappear and go underground once exposed.

They are the direct consequence of Zionism, and it’s important for me to state that people use the far-right extremists as a way to avoid dealing with mainstream Zionism. It’s easy for liberal Israelis to get disgusted by right-wing assholes shouting death to Arabs in Jerusalem and then support IDF soldiers attacking Gaza during airstrikes, actually putting ‘death to Arabs’ into practice. In a state founded on ethnic cleansing backed by an inherently racist and colonialist ideology, one should not be surprised at the existence of racist pogromists and lynch mobs.

Netanyahu is quite a polarizing figure, but I’ll say he has the support of a huge chunk of Israeli society. But not everyone of course. During last summer, Jerusalem held some very big anti-Netanyahu demonstrations.

The “Anti-Bibi (Netanyahu’s nickname in Israel) Movement” got its momentum after corruption allegations were made public and a police investigation around these allegations is ongoing. Israel is currently in an electoral crisis after 4 elections in the last 2 years, and despite Bibi winning the largest number of votes in all of them, he was time and again unable to form a government due to Israel’s electoral system, and new elections were announced.

In the last elections held in March, Netanyahu once again got the largest number of votes, but again was unable to form a government, and the mandate went to his opponents – the rightwing Naftali Bennet and the centrist Yair Lapid, who would apparently share the government for two years each.

So for now, if things don’t change, it seems as though the anti-Bibi movement reached its goal. But things are not expected to go smoothly. Protests for and against the new government are polarizing the country, and things can go anywhere from here. There are even talks in the media about the possibility of political assassination, as the pro-Bibi camp is very unhappy about the course of events.

What about the persecuted and imprisoned people in so-called Israel? Who are they and what have they tried to do? Are there any movements against the state and the capital?

There was actually quite a long tradition of Israeli Jewish working class communities that calling for an end of the occupation. The Israeli Black Panthers, a group of young Mizrahi Jewish immigrants active in Jerusalem during the 70’s, were critical of Zionism and combined calls for an end to  military rule of Palestinians in their demands for economic and social justice. Here in Haifa, there was also a famous Mizrahi revolt in the 50’s in the Wadi Salib neighborhood – by the way, an historical Palestinian neighborhood whose population got evicted during the Nakba.

After a police officer shot and injured a person in a local café, the residents rioted for days, demanding an end to police brutality and discrimination against Mizrahi Jews by the Ashkenazi elite. An end to military rule over the Arabs was one of the demands. There was a time in which solidarity with the Palestinians was part of the radical Mizrahi working class conscience. But this tradition is long gone. The “Mizrahi discourse” today has deteriorated into liberal “identity politics” nonsense, with demands like ‘representation’ of politicians in Parliament, more Mizrahi police officers, and putting the faces of famous Mizrahi people on currency bills.

It’s hard to explain how right wing the Israeli working class is. But people are still revolting.

During the last few years, there were some incidents of police officers shooting and killing Ethiopian Jewish youth. People went out to the streets and rioted all over the country, in many cases connecting it with the Black Lives Matter movement in the so-called US. There weren’t any clear solidarity messages with the Palestinians, but a pretty significant movement against army conscription grew out of the Ethiopian-Jewish protests, under the banner “Our blood is good only for wars”. That’s a big deal in a militaristic state like Israel in which the army is above all.

Also, connections are being made, and it’s hard to predict where social processes will take us. During the anti-Netanyahu protests last summer in Jerusalem, proletariat youth met each other on the street, with Ethiopians, Palestinians, Mizrahi, feminists, environmentalists etc. protesting side by side for the same interests. Despite how liberal the overall demonstrations were, on its far edges, communities that don’t usually get to see each other face to face and are ignorant of their shared interests finally got the chance to do so.

People are now making the connections between the deaths of Ethiopian Jewish youth like Salomon Teka and Yehuda Biagda with the deaths of Palestinians like Iyad Al-Halak and Munis Anabtawi, all of whom were murdered by police. It took a long time for this to happen. But of course I don’t want to paint the picture in more romantic colors than it actually is. It’s too early to discuss any movement that is willing to give up the state and capital amongst Israelis, and I doubt it will happen any time soon. The Palestinian resistance will remain the only truly revolutionary movement in the region.

The conversation about antisemitism and anti-Zionism is starting every time this crisis is arising. Do you accept these terms and if so, what is your opinion on them? Is there anything problematic in the use of these terms? Is the state of Israel using them in its blame-game and, on the other hand, is there such hate from any part of the Palestinians?

Just talked about it with some German comrades lately! I’m going to be completely honest with y’all here: I’m sick and tired of antisemitism being brought up every time the issue of Palestine is being raised. I doubt the honesty and integrity of anyone who, while entire neighborhoods are being erased with airstrikes and people are being evicted from their homes to be replaced by settlers, all he has to say is “Yes, but the Jews”.

We need to really focus right now. People are dying. Ethnic cleansing and colonization campaigns are ongoing. State repression and terror is at an all-time high. Gaza is a Hell on earth and the situation is unbearable. This is a human catastrophe. We don’t have the time to deal with false accusations. Don’t take the bait.

I’m not going to get into how anti-Zionism is different from antisemitism. It’s so old and well known that it’s boring and cliché at this point. Most people already know these things, and many of those who don’t won’t listen anyway. The Left goes around in circles about this because it’s apparently easier to deal with false ‘complexities’ and theoretical debates than to notice what’s happening in front of your eyes. Jewish people have been opposing Zionism since the very beginning, way before the state of Israel existed.

The nation-state form is a project of reinventing the mechanism needed to ‘purify’ and simplify the land of any diversity and complexity until nothing is left but a monolithic state identity. Just notice the language they use – “Israel has the right to defend itself.” States don’t have rights. They only have “rights” insofar as they protect their citizens, and we all know states don’t do that.

I honestly think that Israel is one of the worst things that has happened to Jewish people. It’s an extension of their historical ethnic cleansing from Europe, and a step backwards in many respects. By looking at Netanyahu’s relationship with figures like Trump and Bolsonaro, and the Israeli Right’s warm relationship with its European and American counterparts, you can clearly see that Zionism and antisemitism not only do not oppose each other, they go very well together. They complement each other.

Anyway, as for antisemitism in the solidarity movement, it exists and of course needs to be dealt with. Jewish and Palestinian comrades are aware of it and have been fighting it for decades. The BDS movement for example is strictly against any kind of racism including antisemitism and has been enforcing this policy against any bigots abusing their platform.

People need to gatekeep the solidarity movement against any kind of fascist bullshit like I saw comrades in Germany confronting Turkish fascists infiltrating a pro-Palestinian demonstration. That’s good and needs to happen more. It’s different from simply labeling the whole movement antisemitic. Fascists will take a hold in any platform they feel they can use to propagate their hate, and they infiltrate social movements constantly. It’s our job as antifascists to deny that to them.

As far as the Middle East goes, could we have a “political map” on the converging and conflicting state forces? Some Palestinians, for example, were requesting on social media the help of Pakistan. On the other hand, the state of Israel has the support of the U.S.A. What is your perspective on the world’s response concerning the never-ending violence and massacre in the area?

Geopolitics of course play a big part in inflaming the so-called “conflict”. After the so-called US became a superpower in the 1940’s, and Britain drew its forces out of the Middle East, there was a strong need for a new ‘regional cop’, a Western ally to keep local interests in check. Arab nationalism was a strong force at that time, and a pro-Western power was the logical “security” needed to keep “stability”, meaning American influence and control, over the resources of the region.

Israel impressed the US during the Nakba, with the American military describing it as “the strongest military force in the region after Turkey.” This perception received further confirmation in 1967 after Israel destroyed Nasser’s Egypt and eliminated Arab nationalism as a dominant power in the region.

Even further confirmation came in 1970 when Israel protected Jordan from a Syrian invasion, probably in order to protect oil fields. This tendency grew over the years. Today, Israel receives billions of dollars in military aid from the US annually, more aid than the US gives the entire African continent. To keep a strong Israel is a significant US strategic goal, which is another reason why the US repeatedly vetoes and blocks UN decisions concerning the Palestinians.

The Palestinians, on the other hand, are completely alone and constantly betrayed by their so-called ‘allies’. The Arab countries have long ago abandoned ‘Arab nationalism’ in favor of a neocolonial order of puppet dictators and Western influence. The “Arab Spring” might have given hope for a second, but generally speaking, new dictators replaced the old ones. The latest ‘peace agreement’ between Israel and the UAE shows the lengths neoliberal monarchies in the Middle East will go in normalizing Israel’s presence as long as business and free trade are protected and promoted.

Other state powers are completely opportunistic: The Soviets gave their support during the Cold War whenever it suited their interests. The Palestinians can’t even count on their own “leadership”, as the Palestinian Authority and Hamas are themselves corrupted dictators and opportunistic bureaucracies acting against their own people. The only real ally left is the people on the ground with the international solidarity movement willing to raise its voice and act against modern forms of apartheid, colonialism, and state terror.

Is there any message you want to send to the anarchists and antifascists around the world? How can we all show our solidarity to the Palestinians or the peace and freedom fighters in so-called Israel?

The Palestinians need help and support. They need action and solidarity. Comrades loving freedom from all over the world need to raise their voice for them. Target Israeli interests in your region. Join your local BDS chapter and call for a boycott. Organize direct action. Do anything you can to get the message across. Internationalist revolutionary solidarity is our strongest weapon against state terror and repression. “Comrades” who are silent – your silence is deafening.

Anything about the future?

Fuck “co-existence.” We need co-resistance. We need a joint insurrection of Israelis and Palestinians on the ground and refugees and their supporters abroad against colonialist Zionism and the apartheid regime. We need to create the basis of a new culture, of people capable of creating an autonomy in which people could meet each other on the streets and reinvent living together. We need to share this land as equals, to smash the visible and invisible borders of fear and control, and imagine politics beyond state terror. We need all of this to not be a fantasy but a reality of struggle, courage, and forming brave connections. May we see the day.

You can check the report I wrote to Crime, Inc. concerning the last uprising, in which I dive to some of the topics I mentioned here in details.

Latest Update (End of June): As the last Flag March was interrupted by Hamas rockets, the settlers decided to hold another one. After the riots and the last escalation, there was a big controversy, but the new government held by the new prime minister Naftali Bennet eventually allowed the march to take place on June 15, with thousands of settlers and right-wing activists raiding Jerusalem yelling racist slurs against Arabs and Muslims, all under full police protection as usual.

Numerous shouts of “Death to Arabs,” calls for burning of villages and a second Nakba, and slurs against the Muslim prophet Muhammad were recorded during the march. Small groups of Palestinian resistance on the outskirts of the route of the march were brutally suppressed by riot police. Hamas once again threatened Israel, and in response to the march launched explosive balloons to towns and agricultural fields near the Gaza border, causing fires. Israel in response attacked Gaza once again, this time under the new government, which is obviously the same as the old.

From: https://radiofragmata.org/2021/07/03/fuck-co-existence-we-need-co-resistance-an-interview-with-an-anarchist-in-haifa-about-the-palestinian-resistance-against-the-israeli-occupation/

Alt Left: Fascist States around the World in the Past Century

I will be leaving World War 2, where many such regimes were created in  Europe, out of this discussion because I don’t understand it well.

A discussion of fascism is very important because the Republican Party is already a fascist political party in the sense of a rightwing authoritarian party along Latin American oligarchy lines.

The Type of State the Republicans Are Aiming At

Similar regimes were installed in Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Iran, Turkey (a Mussolinist + Nazi extrerminationist model), Greece, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, Zaire, Kenya, Liberia, Indonesia (a classic Mussolinist model), Philippines, South Korea, Brunei, Taiwan, South Vietnam, Thailand, Nepal, Gabon, Angola, and South Africa, not to mention the many such regimes installed in Latin America, where the rightwing authoritarian or dictatorship regime has become a classic model. Many of these had a fake democratic facade over what was basically a dictatorship.

Nazi extreminationism with an ethnic component has been installed in Turkey and possibly Azerbaijan. Those models are governing to this day in the fake Croatian and Serbian states inside Bosnia. The present Croatian and Serbian regimes have overtones of WW2 like fascism, as does Hungary under Orban. Nazi-style exterminationist regimes, albeit with Communists and leftwingers substituted for Jews, have been installed in Iran, Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, and Taiwan in the past.

One could argue that Israel is now a Mussolinist style fascist government, albeit with a facade of democracy in which various fascist parties compete to rule the fascist state.

Rightwing Authoritarian Models in Latin America in the Last Century

It’s not so much the Nazi, National Socialist or classic fascist models of World War 2, although Trump and Berlusconi do resemble Mussolini, and Berlusconi created a classic Mussolinist fascist state in Brazil along the lines of the previous years of Operation Condor in Pinochet’s Chile, Velasco’s Argentina, the generals’ Brazil, Salazar’s Paraguay, the Uruguayan dictatorship, and Banzer’s Bolivia.

Somewhat different but similar “kill the Communists” regimes were created in Ecuador in the 1980’s, Fujimora and Belaunde’s Peru, Venezuela in the late 80’s, Uribe and many others’ Colombia (where it has become the only form of the state and Uribismo is almost a classic fascist Mussolinist model), Somoza’s Nicaragua, Bautista’s Cuba, Trujillo’s Dominican Republican, Rios Montt’s Guatemala, and ARENA, D’Aubisson, and Duarte’s El Salvador, Haiti under the Duvaliers, where it became a model followed to this day, and the present government of the generals in Honduras.

The model has not yet been installed in much of the Caribbean, Belize, Costa Rica, Panama, Mexico, and the Guyanas, but it’s been generalized as the classic model in Latin America in general for over a century now. There are rumblings now to create another rightwing authoritarian regime in Peru and Mexico.

Counterrevolution is ongoing in Nicaragua, Cuba, and Venezuela and has succeeded recently in Ecuador, Paraguay, Brazil, Bolivia, and Haiti. There were recent rumblings in Argentina, where the large landowners (who were never broken up as there was no land reform)  were making threats of a coup if their riches were touched. There were failed attempts recently in Venezuela, Nicaragua, Ecuador, and Bolivia. Another attempt is ongoing in Venezuela and Nicaragua.

Alt Left: Chaos in Lebanon

Damn, what’s this all about? The country’s economy is in a state of collapse mostly due to a massive embargo that has been placed on it by the (((US))), which is trying to force Lebanon to throw Hezbollah out of the government. Problem: Hezbollah and its allies won 65% in the last election and control that many seats in the Legislature, so they US is demanding that 1/3 of the government throw out 2/3 of the duly and popularly elected government. It’s not going to work. Hezbollah is a permanent fixture in Lebanon with an easy support of 2/3 of the populations, including huge numbers of Lebanese Christians.

The Christians are actually split in half. Half are with Hezbollah and half are against them. The Sunnis are much more united against Hezbollah. The Sunnis in Lebanon are just awful. Total traitors and they are all with the Saudis – they are essentially the pawns of the Saudis and their raison d etre is hatred of Lebanon’s Shia, Iran, and the Shia of the Arab World.

There are articles in Israeli papers with the Israeli government saying that they need to make a massive humanitarian intervention in Lebanon to save the day, but that’s not going to go over very well since the whole reason the economy has collapsed is due to Israel.

The banks of Lebanon have been locked out of the rest of the world’s banking system by the US and France due to ties with Hezbollah. All banks in Lebanon has extensive monetary ties with Hezbollah due to the organization’s massive presence in Lebanese society. So the finance sector has been locked out of the world economy and the result has been an economic collapse.

All of this was done by (((Donald Trump))), by the way.

Alt Left: Malcolm X on Gusanos (Worms) or Anti-Castro Cubans

I have to say that in a lot of ways, Malcolm really as a great man. Notice to the gusanos rioting now in Cuba. The people are not with them at all, trust me. Only 10,000 demonstrated all over the island. Most of them were young people, often teenagers, and some were marginal elements, often lumpens, typically criminals or those who refuse to work. There were some bourgeois elements in Havana.

In the town where the demonstrations originated, even there, they were not the majority. Much larger pro-government groups went out to confront he vendepatrias (countrysellers) at every demonstration. In the town where they claimed to take over the Young Communists headquarters, even there, their crowd of 200 was outnumbered by a crowd of 400.

There are very serious problems in Cuba, but 100% of them have to do with the blockade. The things that the contras want will not solve any problems and their heroes in the US and in the Latin American Right are the ones who caused all these problems in the first place. Cuba’s income has collapsed by 80% due to COVID. They have a very hard time importing much of anything due to the embargo and anything they do import has to go through third parties, etc. and the markups end up being considerable.

So Cuba is not able to engage with the world on a free trade basis at all. For instance, the electricity plants have not been maintained since 2014 because the embargo prevents the importation of spare parts. Cuba could not import any ventilators for COVID due to the blockade which covers all medicines and medical supplies and most foods, so they had to build their own.

This tiny country, blockaded by the whole world, was able to build their own ventilators. Cuba’s rate of saving hospitalized COVID patients is very high despite a serious shortage of drugs. The country has made five different COVID vaccines. The first, with an efficacy rate of 93%, has just been released for emergency use. Nevertheless, the epidemic is hitting them very hard and they have had to expand medical facilities because existing ones were not adequate to cover the problem.

But the new facilities and the overwhelming of the hospitals due to COVID overwhelmed the electricity system. The heat added to the strain. Workers came from all over the country and worked all week to get one substation running, but the temporary fixes usually only last for a month.

Food and medicine has collapsed because of the economic collapse and the embargo preventing Cuba from buying these things on the open market. You have to stand in line for hours for basic necessities. Furthermore, an opening of the economy to market conditions has resulted in a lifting of price controls. The result has been that prices have risen 3X. So you can see that moving towards capitalism caused inflation to skyrocket in Cuba.

Furthermore, most goods are now available only at special currency stores, but most people do not have access to that special currency. The regular currency stores are empty. The result has been that huge mafias have developed who buy things wholesale from the special currency stores and then resell them in the regular currency, but they are marked up by up to 3X. However, there are up to 500,000 of these criminals in Cuba now and there doesn’t seem to be much to do about them. The cops don’t even really try to stop them.

The truth is that since most people only have access to regular currency, the existence of these resellers and mafias seems to be inevitable as that is the only way that ordinary people can buy what they want. There are a lot of complaints about these special stores and the state currency manipulations that they are a result of, but the currency decisions seem to be based on sound, if rather capitalist, economics. I don’t know what can be done about the problem of these stores.

I really don’t know what the Cuban government could do to make any of the problems of the country go away. Can someone please tell me what the government should do to go about making even one of these problems they have better?

Most Cubans know capitalism up front, and they explicitly dislike the very idea of it. They don’t even like the US model. And the Latin American models of capitalism don’t like very enticing compared to what Cubans already have. Even the Dominican Republic, Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, and even Uruguay seem pretty awful compared to Cuba.

For one thing, there is almost no crime in Cuba and the drug use and sales rate is very low. There is almost no drug smuggling. There are no street gangs to speak of, nor are there any beggars in the streets.

During the decade when Nicaragua switched to capitalism, the roads were full of potholes and were nearly undriveable, children carried their chairs to school every day because the school had no chairs for the students, the streets were lined with dirty, hungry children and the first word out of their mouths was to ask you for a coin. Now that Ortega and the Sandinistas are back, all of that is gone. Nicaraguans have lived under both the Sandinistas and their capitalist rightwing enemies and they majority do not want the Right to come back into power any time soon. They have seen how the Right acts when they are in power.

If they let them back in, they will do the same thing all over again. The Venezuelans are the same way. The Right has only ever espoused dismantling every since achievement of the Chavistas. However, 70% of the population support the Chavista project and describe themselves as Chavistas. With a population of 70% Chavistas and an opposition that has pledged to dismantle the entire project, is there any wonder that the Chavistas win by ~70% every time? Why wouldn’t they?

And Nicaragua is sending very few immigrants to the US. The Central American immigrants flooding “the misery, crime, violence, and poverty” of the region are all coming from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. They are not coming from Nicaragua. There’s a reason for that. Also, Nicaragua has had very low rates of COVID cases and deaths, while at least Guatemala was utterly devastated by the disease.

It is true that there are contras in Cuba. It’s certainly not illegal to be a contra and they are quite easy to find. Contras represent ~14% of the population because that is how many people voted agains the last Constitution. The contras calling for a US fake humanitarian intervention and invasion are certainly much less than that.

Guaido, the Venezuelan contra, had 4% support last I heard. His project of sanctions and US invasion has 12% support. Sanctions themselves have only 18% support. The general opposition has ~27% support.

The Right has ruled Haiti since 1994 when Lavalas was overthrown by the US and Aristide was forced into exile. Aristide won 92% of the vote the last time he ran. That’s how many Haitians supported and support Lavalas. All of the US-installed regimes ever since have had the support of ~8% of the population.

The opposition in Nicaragua also has ~25%. The last poll had them at 23%. However, the position of the contras who tried to overthrow the government with a violent coup in 2018 has only 15% support. The latest poll shows Ortega winning 77%-23% against the opposition.

It is not true that the opposition is being forbidden from running. Some people who took money from the US to stage a violent attempt to overthrow the government have been arrested. Others have had their political privileges revoked for life. This is exactly what should happen to all of the Venezuelan coup-mongers, and some are already under house arrest or have been banned from politics for 15 years. None of these Nicaraguan coup plotters were candidates for any political party.

The US has been trying to insert these traitors in the political parties since 2018, but no party will take them. These are not politicians. They are not even associated with any political party. In fact, there are 17 different political parties running against the Sandinistas in the upcoming election. It’s perfectly legal to be in the opposition in Nicaragua. You only must follow the laws. As in Venezuela, the Nicaraguan contras are only ~25% of the population and they can never win at the ballot box, so they try to overthrow the government by force again.

The thing is that the contras in Cuba are all reactionaries. They wave American flags and they all want to go to neoliberalism. They are rioting because COVID is peaking in Cuba, but even there, Florida, a very wealthy capitalist state in the US, has had twice as many cases per capita and five times as many deaths per capita. In the Latin American countries that the US-flag waving mercenaries emulate, COVID death rates are 10, 20, and 50X higher than in the US.

Even in the “successful” Latin American countries like Chile, COVID has been disastrous. By the way, Chile is hardly a model for Latin America. The place is a disaster.

It’s not some groovy West European social democracy. There are no groovy West European social democracies in Latin America. The people who are trying to emulate just that are Maduro, Ortega, Correa, Fernandez, Lula, Morales, and the recent winner in Peru, Castillo – the ones who are being called Communist Pink Tide countries. An actual Communist is ahead in the polls in Chile and a moderate Leftist appears poised to win even in Colombia, the last holdout of the populist Right.

All of these people who have already served in power have either all been overthrown by the US or there have been attempts to overthrow them.

The US only tolerates hard Right regimes in Latin America. This has always been the case. Part of the problem is that Latin America never had Social Contracts as Europe did. The oligarchs and the Right have always been reactionary and fascist and are to this day.

In contrast, in Europe, the true reactionaries and fascists are all but defeated, and social democracy rules the day. Latin American style Rightists do not exist in Europe. The only thing close to that economically was in Eastern Europe in the Baltics, and these places failed horrifically with the 2008 Depression. Even Poland and the Czech Republic are not so rightwing as everyone thinks.

The most rightwing government in Europe is in the UK, and they are to the Left of the Democratic Party.

Republican Party-Latin American Right economics is unpopular all over the world.

I will grant that it is popular in a few places. It retains majority support in Colombia, but with the recent riots and the genocidal response of the regime to them, this seems to be ending. In Hong Kong and Singapore, two very wealthy more or less “fake states” – fake because these states cannot be replicated elsewhere – rightwing economics remains popular. However, the working classes in Hong Kong mostly support China and hate the rightwing government, and in Singapore, the main opposition party has Marxist roots.

The way of the world seems to be socialism or at least some kind of socialism, at the very least some variety of social democracy. Neoliberalism is disliked or even hated on most of the planet. Bottom line is nobody likes it and nobody wants it. In places where it gets polled as in Latin America, it has the support of 8-27% of the population, with an average of 26% support for the project in general which declines to 8-18% when it comes to the coup-mongering Right that calls for sanctions, violent coups and US interventions. This is the political demographic of the oligarchs and their supporters.

It’s minority now and appears to be minority for quite some time into the future. Economic conservatism and conservatism in general believe in rule by the aristocracy or oligarchy. Liberalism by contrast means rule by democracy or rule by the people. As the aristocrats, oligarchs and their supporters are always a minority – 25-30% seems to be a good ballpark figure, they generally hate democracy and tend to rely on antidemocratic means of getting in and staying in power.

Alt Left: Why The Republican Party is Now Literally a Latin American-Style Rightwing Authoritarian or Fascist Political Party

Fascism: A Popular Palingetic Dictatorship against the Left

This is if we define fascism as any rightwing dictatorship or rightwing authoritarian system. I think it’s a good argument that any rightwing dictatorship is basically a fascist political system if we define fascism according to its excellent new definition of “a popular dictatorship against the Left.”

It also tends to have nationalist or ultranationalist palingetic properties in many cases, palingetic referring to a project along the lines of the mythic bird rising from the ashes that seeks to restore the blood and soil glory of the ancient nation before it was destroyed by insurgent anti-nationalists, typical liberals or minorities.

Trumpism, Erdoganism, and Hindutvadism: Three Fascist Ideologies

Viewed through this mirror, you can see how Trumpism, Erodgan’s Ottoman Islamism, and the BJP Hindutva regime in India are all classic fascist political parties. Note the strong support by the middle classes of all three projects, in particular the Hindutvadi one. Religion is wedded to religious bigotry in all three nations – Christianity (albeit in a mild form deeply associated with regressive Judaism) in Trump’s case, a religio-nationalist Islam in the case of Turkey and a religio-nationalist Hindusim in the case of India.

In the latter two cases, religious minorities are associated with treasonous insurgents who needed to be eliminated from the body politic, which they are seen as literally poisoning. In Trump’s case, the prejudice is not so much religious as it as against liberals and liberalism and apparently even democracy, the twin enemies of fascists everywhere dating all the way back to 1930’s Germany. Liberalism and democracy makes the nation soft and allows the national enemies, who happen to be minorities and liberals, to worm their way into the body politic and eat away at the nation itself like termites.

Alt Left: Russian Thinking on Black-White Versus Grey Areas

Commenter Siberiancat, who is a Russian, left this comment a while back:

Russians are pretty good with gray areas.

An illustration:

A Russian emigrant mathematician and psychologist Vladimir Lefevre was an adviser to Reagan on how to conduct negotiations with Gorbachev. He had a theory that Western and Eastern European (in this case, Soviet) ethics were completely different.

In Western thinking, there is a clear difference between Good and Evil. One should confront evil, yet compromise with an enemy is a good thing

In the Eastern approach, there is no Good and Evil. Everything is gray. The ends justify the means, and one should not compromise with an enemy.

The advice was to conduct negotiations in such a way that the Soviets would not look like compromising to the domestic constituency. Make negotiations mostly informal. Avoid formal deals that might be seen as defeats by the ordinary Russians.

I would not say that Russians are Easterners, having nothing in common with the Chinese or Indians, yet the ethical systems between them and the West are obviously different.

Oh, and Lefevre was the guy who coined the term Evil Empire.

I find it interesting that he ties Eastern European (as in Slavic?) thinking with Russian thinking. What about in the Baltic states? They’re so Westernized. And the Czechs are so Western they are barely even Slavs. And what do we do with the Romanians? The culture and religion of the East, yet the language of the West? I suspect they are more Eastern than we think. The Balkans, Greece, …Hell, even Bulgaria, are more Southern European or better yet, Southeastern European.

I know everyone over there hates the Turks and I don’t blame them, but I’m afraid that they’re more Turkified than they think, especially the Greeks. Or perhaps the entire region is Southeast Europanified, Southeast European being different from both Eastern and Southern Europe. The Turks like to delude themselves that they are part of general Southeastern Europe, but that is just more Muslim arrogance. They’re so much closer to the Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians, and Kurds that they hate so much than they will ever admit. Religion isn’t as big a part of human culture as everyone thinks. In a lot of areas, it’s almost a cultural “add-on.”

I do like this part though:

In the Eastern approach, there is no Good and Evil. Everything is gray.

Reminds me of the great line from Rumi:

Over there
In that field
Beyond good and evil
I will meet you there

– Rumi

That is just so perfect, I am sorry. And it’s so…Eastern…Hell, it’s almost downright Chinese for Chrissake. Rumi was an Iranian Shia Sufi poet. I wonder to what extent Iranian thinking is “Eastern?” I hate to say like Chinese, but I sense a deep vibe of Chinese philosophy in that bit of terse poetry.

Alt Left: Argument: There Is No Peaceful Road to Socialism

Transformer: I saw this on Facebook with a discussion about Communism and this is a statement from a Libertarian:

The Marxist delusion of no government always leads to absolute tyranny. The anarcho-communists sweep away tolerably governments and pave the way for the Stalins, Maos, Pol Pots, Castros, Mugabes, Chavezes, etc. It’s not that they justify Stalinism, but that they justify measures that always result in Stalinism, and they still don’t have a clue as to why that keeps happening.

I disagree with his statement that the governments before these revolutions were tolerable.

The CIA supported Pol Pot.

Yes, the US supported Pol Pot the whole time they were in and for many years afterwards as guerrillas.

You are certainly free as a liberal to Leftist to oppose Marxism. A lot of people on the Left, especially liberals, are against Marxist dictatorships. There’s a good argument against them. They’re not exactly democratic.

Chavez was not a dictator at all. Venezuela under Chavez was one of the most democratic countries on Earth. Mugabe wasn’t really a dictator. The opposition always ran in every election, and Mugabe always got the most votes not counting fraud. Same thing in Russia. Putin always gets the most votes whether he steals a few or not. Same thing in Belarus. The opposition runs every time and Lukashenko always gets 75-80% of the actual counted votes. There was no fraud in the last election.

There’s never been any serious electoral fraud in Venezuela, Nicaragua, Bolivia, Haiti, Iran, Syria, or Peru or most places the US has alleged that massive electoral fraud allowed the Left to win. I can’t recall the last time the Left anywhere on Earth had to steal an election to win. It’s usually the Right who does that.

Anarcoms have never completed a successful revolution. The no government thing is supposed to be way off in the future and it’s never happened anywhere. The “Stalinism” is just the dictatorship of the proletariat. It’s part of Marxist theory. It’s not an aberration or anything. Look at Honduras, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Zimbabwe, Guatemala, El Salvador, Haiti, Bolivia, Guyana, Peru, Mexico, Italy, Ecuador, Brazil, Chile, Dominican Republic, East Timor, Iran, etc.

There’s no peaceful way to put the Left in power. Anytime a Left government comes in, there’s this nonstop war to overthrow it, usually culminating in a rightwing fascist coup. They always ruin the economy, first and foremost. This is why orthodox Marxists regard the peaceful road to socialism as either a sick joke or a great idea that is not possible in the real world. Lenin called advocates of the peaceful road to socialism “parliamentary cretins.”

Alt Left: Rural Land Reforms: An Overview

What’s odd is that imperialism went along with land reforms in a lot of other places such as Europe and the Middle East. All of the Middle East has done a land reform.

That was one thing the wave of Arab nationalist leaders who came to power in 1950-1970 did right away, including the Baath in Iraq and Syria, Yemen, Nasser in Egypt, the FLN in Algeria, Tunisia, and Qaddafi in Libya.

I believe there was some type of land reform done in Palestine too. If you read Ghassan Kanafani, the Palestinian Leftist, in the 1930’s, he talked about how terribly exploited the Arab fellahin or peasants were in Palestine.

If you went to Yemen in the 1960’s, there was a portrait of Nasser in every house.

I’m not sure if a land reform was ever done in Morocco. It’s been ruled by a fairly rightwing king for a long time.

A land reform was probably done in Lebanon, but I don’t have details. Likewise with Jordan.

Nothing grows in the Gulf anyway, so there’s no need for a reform.

I’m not sure about Sudan or Mauritania, but I doubt much grows in Mauritania except date palms.

In all of these places, land reform was a very easy sell for whatever reason, probably because neoliberal capitalism seems to be antithetical to Islam itself. The feudal lords of the former Ottoman Empire had tried to justify feudalism on the basis that in the Koran it says something like, “Some are rich and some are poor, and this is a natural thing” but that never went over too well.

The idea that in an Islamic country, the rich Muslims were viciously exploit the poor Muslims is nearly haram on its face. You just can’t do that. All Muslims are part of the ummah. All the Muslim men are your brothers and all the Muslim women are your sisters. Also individualism never made it to any part of the Muslim World other than the Hindu variety in Pakistan and Bangladesh, but that’s not really the same radical individualism that we have in the West. It’s just an ancient caste based system.

The first thing the Communists did in Eastern Europe was to do a land reform. You will never hear it here in the West, but until 1960, the Communist regimes in the East were very popular with industrial workers and also with the peasants.

In most of the world, peasants and rural dwellers are leftwingers. This is even the case in Western Europe in France.

The US is odd in that it’s farmers are so reactionary. That goes against the usual trend.

Yes, farmers are said to be conservatives, but that usually just means social conservatism. In most of the world, peasants are literally Alt Left: left on economics and right on social and cultural issues.

A land reform was definitely done in Iran.

Obviously one was done in the USSR, and the large landowners have not yet consolidated themselves in the former USSR, mostly because everybody hates them. Large landowners have taken over some of the state farms in Russia, but for whatever reason, they are not very productive. In fact, many of the state farms are still in existence. I am not sure what sort of arrangement they have now.

50% of the food in the Russia comes from small farms, typically grown on dachas. Dachas were vacation homes that were given to all Soviet workers. They were also given a bit of land, enough to grow some crops on. After 1991, all workers were allowed to keep their dachas and small plots. This was a great idea because most of the produce in Russia is coming right off of these farms.

After World War 2, the US supported land reforms in some places as a way of heading off a Communist threat. This is one great thing about the Communists. So many great steps of social progress were only done out of fear or terror that if these were not done, the Communists would take over. Now that that threat is gone, one wonders what motivation the oligarchs have to give up anything.

In particular, land reforms were done in Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. They went over very easily. And in fact, the subsequent economic growth occurred right on the back of these reforms. There is a good argument that you can never develop a proper economy without first doing a land reform.

First of all, you need to get rid of the problem of rural poverty.

Second of all, you need to feed your own people. Large landowners in these countries typically grow food for export or simply fallow the land and keep it as an income base or a source of wealth.

When crops are grown for export, there is a problem in that the nation does not grow enough food to feed its people. This is a problem in Cuba and Venezuela right now, and it should not be. These are very fertile countries and there is no need to import food, but they have gotten hooked on some sort of “crack” of importing their food for whatever reason, possibly because most of their farmland was being used to grow crops for export.

When a nation can feed itself, this means it can feed its urban workers. This is extremely important and it is part of the reason that Stalin went at such breakneck speed in his collectivization. He had to feed his urban workers so he could industrialize because even back then, he was looking into the future and seeing that he was going to have to fight Hitler.

I’m not quite sure why, but no country seems to be able to properly industrialize and develop as long as the problem of rural poverty exists.

And once you are feeding your own people, you have solved a lot of other problems. Money that would be wasted importing inferior food from the West, especially the US, can now be spent on actual development of a national economy. The elimination of rural poverty gets rid of a constant revolutionary bur in the side of the state.

The US has always opposed land reform in Latin America because large US corporations are usually involved in growing foods for export down there. See Dole Pineapple in Guatemala. We want all of their agricultural land to go for export crops so US corporations can grow those crops or make money importing them. And we do not want them to grow their own food. That way there won’t be so much land for export crops which we need to make money off of.

Also, we want them to spend all of their food money importing lousy processed food from the US. So we make money on food both ways – importing food from crops grown for export to the US and in exporting processed food to the Latin America. This processed food is not very good for you and it is implicated in a lot of health problems in these places.

This is why the US opposes most efforts at land reform in the Americas.

An exception was made in El Salvador. After 200,000 people died, the US and the Salvadoran oligarchs were forced to the negotiating table and a land reform was one of the first things they pushed. I recall a piece written soon afterwards where the reporter went out to the rural areas and interviewed recipients of the land reform. They basically said, “Well, at least we can eat now. It wasn’t like that before.”

In semi-feudal countries, there is debt bondage whereby large landowners rent out their land to sharecroppers or peasants who never seem to get out of debt. This is a very primitive form of development.

The Philippines is notable that there has never been a land reform. And of course they have a vicious Communist insurgency.

Nor has there been one in Colombia, Guatemala, Haiti, Paraguay, Honduras, or Argentina. The first five countries are horribly screwed up. Colombia and Paraguay have active armed leftwing guerrillas, and Guatemala did for many years. Haiti is a disaster. Honduras has a vicious rightwing dictatorship that has murdered over 1,000 people.

Argentina is mostly urbanized, but the landed rural elite still runs the country. Any talk at all of land reform or even taxation of large estates as was done recently under Christine Fernandez, and the ruling class starts making ominous threats of a coup. I assume something similar is going on in Uruguay. Those countries are urbanized though, so large landownership is not such a problem.

I’m not sure if there has ever been a land reform in Brazil, but there is no dearth of large landowners.

The fact that Colombia, Guatemala, and Haiti are so backwards is largely because there has never been a land reform.

The land reform was incomplete in Venezuela.

It is interesting that every country that fails to do a land reform seems to end up with a Communist or Leftist insurgency at some point or another. It’s almost without fail. This goes to show you that most Communist insurgencies in the Third World are over the most basic things dating all the way back to French Revolution: land and bread (food).

As far as land reforms go, they were done in Mexico, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Venezuela, and Peru.

I’m not sure about Uruguay, Ecuador, Bolivia, Panama, Jamaica, Belize, the Guyanas, Chile, and most of the Caribbean.

And I’m not sure if one ever got done in the Dominican Republic after Bosch.

In El Salvador, 200,000 had to die in order for a land reform to take place. Roberto D’Aubission, the godfather of the Salvadoran death squads and the most favored visitor at the US Embassy, once said that “We will have to kill 200,000 people in order to prevent socialism in El Salvador.” What he meant by socialism was land reform.

It is notable that no land reform was ever done in India, nor in Pakistan or even Bangladesh. I had a friend whose parents were large feudal landowners in Pakistan who rented out land to farmers who ended up in debt peonage. In 1986, 14 million people a year were dying of starvation related diseases in the capitalist world. Most of that was in South Asia in Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and India. Most of these deaths were attributed to the problem of the private ownership of land.

There is a problem with the private ownership of land. In the US, we think this is sacrosanct, but on a worldwide basis, it doesn’t work very well. What do you need all that land for? What do you need more than, say, an acre and a house? Nothing, unless you are a farmer.

In China, all land is owned by the state. All homeowners lease the land, often on 100 year leases. I’m not sure how it works in the countryside.

In Mexico, much of the land is owned by the state also, a product of the land reform that occurred after the Revolution. One of the major demands of the Revolution was land reform. Pre-revolution, most peasants usually lived like serfs. The state land in Mexico is called ejidos.

If you ever can’t make it in the city, if you become unemployed or homeless, you can always go out to the countryside and take up residence in an ejido, which are something like communal lands that are formed by the group that makes up the ejido. You join this group, work the land, and get a share of the crop. At least you have enough food to eat. So in Mexico the ejidos are a stopgap measure.

In China too, if you can’t make it in the city, you can always go back to the rural areas, take up residence, and work the land. At least you will have enough to food to eat. It is illegal to be homeless in China. If you are homeless, the police pick you up and put you in shelters, which are something like college dorms. They also encourage you to go back to the countryside if you have relatives back there. In recent years, many people have moved from the countryside to the cities to make more money. Those that don’t make it can always move back to the farm.

There was debate a while back about privatizing state land, but it ran aground on the idea that the state ownership of land was necessary as a stopgap measure in the event of urban poverty. In addition, state ownership of land has prevented the development of a national oligarchy or plutocracy.

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been adamant that the  development of a national oligarchy or plutocracy must be prevented at all costs. Once they develop, they are sort of like an infection in that they soon spread and take over society. The CCP has billionaire party members who are members of the People’s Assembly.

Guess what these “Communists” are advocating for? Reduction or elimination of taxes on the rich, massive reductions in social spending, state repression of labor, and the privatization of land along with most of the rest of the economy. I think this goes to show you that billionaires are the same everywhere. Whether in a Communist or capitalist country, a rightwing or leftwing country, billionaires always have precisely the same class interests that barely vary at all. It’s usually something like this:

Reduction or elimination of taxes on the rich, massive reductions in social spending, state repression of labor, and the privatization of land along with most of the rest of the economy.

This goes to show that class interests of various classes are nearly a  law in a mathematical sense and not even a theory of social science. This was what Marx was getting at when he spoke of the laws of economics. They are so predictable that we can almost class them with the laws, theorems, and corollaries of mathematics instead of the typical “true for now” theories of most of the sciences.

I have a feeling that a Hell of a lot more things are laws, too, especially in terms of basic human behavior. So many of these things seem almost unchangeable. Of course they would never apply to everyone, but it’s pretty obvious that they are general tendencies.

Alt Left: “The Macroeconomics of Economic Populism in Latin America,” by Rudiger Dornbush and Sebastian Edwards

I didn’t actually read the book, but James Schipper did. Below I will quote from an article from NACLA that critiques the book well.

James Schipper: Perón came back from exile, and then won the election with a landslide. Unless the Argentines are complete political idiots, this demonstrates that he tried to accomplish something for the masses. Ordinary voters may not understand much about economics, but they usually sense who is on their side and who is not.

The US, Canada, Great Britain, and Australia are three Anglosphere countries that keep voting for rightwing economics despite themselves. The masses have been harmed by neoliberalism in all of these countries, but every four years, they march off and vote for it again. I think part of the problem is that ordinary people are voting against mass immigration and other leftwing stupidities in all of these countries. They don’t realize that neoliberalism comes as an add-on to anti-immigrant policies in the Anglosphere. Voters in the Anglosphere are political idiots.

You can see why people keep voting for the Chavistas in Venezuela. Sure, the economy is a mess, but no one blames the government. 70% of the population openly state that they are Chavistas. Things may be bad now but they know that the opposition is not their friend! This is why they keep voting for Ortega in Nicaragua, Lukashenko in Belarus, and Putin in Russia. These guys are on their side, and the voters can figure that out.

James Schipper: Many years ago, I read a book called The Macroeconomics of Populism in Latin America, in which it is explained how leftist populists in LA, despite their unquestioned commitment to improving the economic lot of the poorest segment of the population, often fail because they overreach.

Wikipedia has an article called Macroeconomic Populism, which explains briefly how overambitious economic populism can backfire.

I would agree that acting too fast too soon isn’t a great idea and a slower approach might work better. But we don’t see a lot of cases of economic stupidity like this nowadays in Latin America.

Yes, I think that book is not good. One man worked for the World Bank. Their basic attitude is “Don’t rely on government to try to fix economic problems and help the poor. It fails every time.” In other words, it’s hopeless. Massive inequality a problem? Sure. What to do? Nothing! Because everything you do is going to fail. I dunno.

Here is a critique of the book:

https://nacla.org/news/2012/4/20/latin-america-unravels-populist-putdown

The book is referred to in this book review of another book as “an outdated, far-right, academically dishonest book.”

From the article.

Rudiger Dornbush, and Sebastian Edwards, two University of Chicago-trained economists.

See? They were both trained at the University of Chicago. That’s the home of Milton Friedman, neoliberalism, the Chicago Boyz, the neoliberal whiz kids who caused so much destruction all over the world, especially in Latin America. UoC/Friedmanite economics doesn’t work. Period. It causes massive inequality, significant gains for the top 20% and a serious drop in income for the bottom 80%. This is exactly what happened from 1980-1992 under Reagan-Bush. Sure, if you are in the top 20%, I would say neoliberal economics is the way to go. But if you’re not, it’s economic suicide.

They complain about D and E’s portrayal of Chile:

The most astonishing example of the book’s studied ignorance happens to be one of the most indisputable and well-documented examples of U.S. intervention: Chile.

According to Chapter 7 of Dornbush and Edwards’ book, written by Felipe Larraín (currently Chile’s Finance Minister) and Patricio Meller, the “decline and full collapse of the [Allende coalition government] experiment during the years 1972-73 is a clear consequence of the ‘successful’ overexpansive policies implemented in 1971.”

Never mind that Nixon reacted to the 1970 elections determined to “smash Allende,” telling then-CIA director Richard Helms to “make the economy scream.” Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh details the earliest destabilization campaigns, carried out even before Allende took office:

Approval was granted for a last-minute increase of the propaganda activities designed to convince the Chilean Congress that an Allende election would mean financial chaos. Within two weeks, twenty-three journalists from at least ten countries were brought into Chile by the CIA, and they combined with CIA propaganda “assets” already in place to produce more than 700 articles and broadcasts both in and out of Chile before the congressional election – a staggering total whose ultimate influence cannot be measured.

By late September, a full-fledged bank panic had broken out in Santiago, and vast amounts of funds were being transferred abroad. Sales of durable goods, such as automobiles and household goods, fell precipitously; industrial production also dropped. Black-market activities soared as citizens sought to sell their valuables at discounted prices.

Ok that’s a case of capital flight. Venezuela had the same problem. All I can say is that it upholds Lenin’s idea that the peaceful road to socialism, while a great idea in theory, simply never works in real life because the capitalists simply sabotage the economy.

Larraín and Meller mention Nixon, Kissinger, Richard Helms, I.T.T., and/or Pepsi precisely zero times in their scholarly analysis. Whereas U.S. Ambassador to Chile Edward Korry threatened that “not a nut or bolt will be allowed to reach Chile under Allende,” doing “all within our power to condemn Chile and the Chileans to utmost deprivation and poverty.”

Like I said, they failed badly to include the US massive economic war it waged against Chile. The same exact program was used against Venezuela, with the same results. The sanctions on Zimbabwe and Nicaragua also caused hyperinflation.

The only hyperinflation I’ve seen lately was caused by capitalists waging economic war against the state or by US sanctions. Usually both are going on at the same time. In Venezuela, the capitalists won’t stop raising prices. They love the hyperinflation because they’ve used it to play the currency black market to make a bundle. And they deliberately created it by shutting down production and hoarding goods.

At one point, Maduro put the army in charge of enforcing price controls, and the inflation stabilized for a while, but then they were withdrawn and they went back up again. However, after floating the currency along with a drop in the value of real wages and a reduction of most people’s savings, inflation was subdued. I’d hate to see these guys’ analysis of Venezuela. In fact, Krugman is already saying that Venezuela and Argentina are modern cases of this macroeconomic populism.

The authors argue instead that all state efforts to create a decent economy will fail and the only thing that will work is neoliberalism.

The authors explain that “the message emerging from the papers in this book is clear: the use of macroeconomic policy to achieve distributive goals has historically led to failure, sorrow, and frustration.” That’s why they helpfully disabuse Latin America of its “naive confidence in the ability of governments to cure all social and economic ills.”

However, neoliberalism doesn’t work either:

Second, it is worth noting that Cambridge development economist Ha-Joon Chang has analyzed the effects of these supposedly self-defeating macro policies. He finds on the contrary that “developing countries did not do badly at all during the ‘bad old days’ of protectionism and state intervention in the 1960s and 70s. In fact, their economic growth performance during the period was far superior [3.1% in per capita GDP a year for Latin America] to that achieved since the 1980s under greater opening and deregulation [1.1% a year from 1980-2009].

…And even that rate was partly due to the rapid growth of countries in the region that had explicitly rejected neoliberal policies sometime earlier in the 2000s  – Argentina, Ecuador, Uruguay and Venezuela.” In fact, when Dornbush and Edwards published their book in 1991 denouncing “overly expansive” macro policies, Latin America and the Caribbean – largely compliant to IMF diktats at that point – had already averaged an entire decade of negative 0.3% growth rate per capita (1980-1990).

If you are going to read books about economics, I recommend Ha-Joon Chang. As you can see, neoliberalism in Latin America failed completely. Even its proponents admitted that it failed, but their attitude was the usual, “We didn’t give it time enough. Give it some more time and it will start working.” Yeah, right.

Larraín and Meller focus their attention exclusively on the macroeconomic policy errors of Allende’s Unidad Popular (UP) government. Its efforts to “increase real wages and to improve Chilean income distribution failed completely,” they contend, dryly adding that it “took eight years, up to 1981 (during the ‘peak of the boom’), for real wages to recover the level they had held in 1970 before the UP government.”

Larraín and Meller omit from this account Pinochet’s post-1973 reign of terror in which tens of thousands were imprisoned and killed and an economic policy during the dictatorship that led to virtually no growth in per capita income by 1986, 13 years after the coup.

See? Neoliberalism didn’t work either. It took until 11 years after Allende for real wages to reach the level they were under Allende. Then there was an economic crash. I believe it took until 1989 for wages to reach the level they were under Allende again. That’s just a complete failure of neoliberalism over 20 years.

Perhaps the paper’s most artful flourish is the cynical use of the impersonal, passive voice. Nixon directed a comprehensive program of economic sabotage literally bearing Secretary of State Kissinger’s signature. The U.S. funded all major anti-government strikes, the CIA penetrated all of Chile’s political parties, and it courted the military to foment a putsch.

From D and E:

Real wages dropped spectacularly, by -11.3% in 1972 and -38.6% in 1973. This last figure includes a 30% cut induced in the fourth quarter of 1973, after the military coup…[B]y the end of 1971 the signals of disequilibrium were clear for a dispassionate observer. Bottlenecks appeared in strength during 1972, and 1973 witnessed the collapse of the whole experiment. Political instability mounted, and a coup ultimately replaced the UP Government with a military junta [emphases mine].

It was all Allende’s fault. All of the economic sabotage and the economic war the US waged to make the economy scream? That did nothing at all! Seems like a very bad analysis.

Guys like D and E are still writing today:

Today, U.S. scholars carry on the dubious tradition of lambasting Latin American populism, whatever its prevailing definition. Due to South America’s general drift to the left in recent years, academics make increasingly strained attempts to “recognize” and discredit it. In an October 2011 paper entitled Decreasing Inequality Under Latin America’s ‘Social Democratic’ and ‘Populist’ Governments: Is the Difference Real?,”Juan Montecino of the Center for Economic and Policy Research highlights the “arbitrary and ill-defined nature” of this endeavor.

Montecino politely dismantles the findings of economists Darryl McLeod and Nora Lustig, who purport to show that “social democratic” regimes did better than “left-populist” ones in reducing inequality in recent years. He shows that their empirical results are reversed when one runs the same regressions using data from the Economic Commission for Latin America. The paper raises questions as to whether their categories capture “anything more than a general antipathy toward one group of governments.”

In other words, they faked the data.

Unsurprisingly, this antipathy is directed toward three of the four countries Ha-Joon Chang highlights for experiencing growth after rejecting neoliberal policies: Argentina, Ecuador, and Venezuela.

Their enemies now are those three countries. Simon Johnson attacks Latin American populism in the case of Argentina:

Johnson has referred to Argentina as “a country that struggles over many decades (and whose leaders frequently rail against the world) and for which episodes of reasonable prosperity and new economic models are punctuated by gut-wrenching crises.”

In the case of Argentina’s last gut-wrenching crisis in 2001, however, the “IMF’s fingerprints” were all over it, wrote macroeconomist Mark Weisbrot, CEPR’s co-director and Argentina expert, in late 2001. “It arranged massive amounts of loans – including $40 billion [in 2000] – to support the [overvalued] Argentine peso,” writes Weisbrot. Then it “made its loans conditional on a ‘zero-deficit’ policy for Argentine government.”

By doing so, the IMF was able to “convince most of the press that Argentina’s ‘profligate’ spending habits [were] the source of its troubles.” Finally, the IMF – an organization Tim Geithner recently considered essential for promoting U.S. foreign policy – implausibly claimed it had always been against the overvalued peso and that the loans were made in order to placate the Argentine government.

The IMF caused the problem with orthodox neoliberalism and then blamed the government for “profligate spending” because they ordered it to read zero-deficit, a goal which itself caused the crisis.

See? They’re making it up.

Second, Johnson seems to portray the country as wracked by serious, ongoing difficulties. But Weisbrot et al. demonstrate that since defaulting and devaluing, Argentina – widely considered ‘populist’ – expanded 94% from 2002–11 (the fastest growth in the hemisphere), reaching its pre-recession level of GDP in three years, tripling real social spending over seven years, reducing poverty and extreme poverty by two-thirds (using independent estimates of inflation), and achieving record levels of employment.

Their paper also demolishes the myth repeated by many economists – including McLeod and Lustig – that Argentina’s success was largely the effect of a serendipitous commodities boom.

See? Populism worked great in Argentina. It also worked great in Venezuela (before the economic war combined with the collapse in oil prices killed the economy), Ecuador, and Bolivia.

The devastating policies of the past in Latin America, as well as the more successful policies of vastly more independent governments over the past decade, are intimately tied up with Washington’s control over the hemisphere and the recent collapse of its influence – especially in South America. Roger Morris, a staffer at the National Security Council until mid-1970, clarified such considerations for Seymour Hersh:

“I don’t think anybody ever fully grasped that Henry [Kissinger] saw Allende as being a far more serious threat than Castro. If Latin America ever became unraveled, it never would happen with a Castro. Allende was a living example of democratic social reform in Latin America…Chile scared him.”

The devastating economics of the past in Latin America were caused by the US waging economic war on countries that practiced populist economics. This same populism has worked much better now because the influence of the US has greatly fallen in the continent.

The U.S. government has long imposed double standards on the permissibility of social reforms. While instrumental to Allende’s overthrow abroad, the Nixon administration could boast progressive domestic achievements, including the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and the Earned Income Tax Credit, widely considered one of the most important anti-poverty programs in U.S. history.

Similarly, Lyndon Johnson enacted Great Society programs at home but sent thousands of troops to the Dominican Republic in 1965 to quell an uprising demanding the restitution of the deposed social democratic president, Juan Bosch. A liberal wishing to implement land reforms, Bosch was the subject of an FBI espionage and interception operation authorized by J. Edgar Hoover in the months preceding the rebellion, as Bosch sat exiled in Puerto Rico.

See? Liberalism at home. Fascism abroad. That’s the policy prescription of the US under Democrats and liberal Republicans. Also note the FBI overthrew him. The FBI was deeply involved in the lawfare against Brazil that resulted in the false charges being filed against Lula that put him in prison. See? The FBI literally overthrew Lula in Brazil. The FBI are not just pigs; they’re the worst pigs of them all – feds. And it is a deeply political and always reactionary organization. Fuck the FBI.

Perhaps unknowingly, Johnson is simply keeping within the permissible framework of an intellectual culture that has always accommodated and justified Washington’s hypocrisy. To my knowledge, Johnson has yet to apply his support for “standing up to the banks…proposing a more responsible course of action than that preferred by the banking elite,” and “greater transparency in financial transactions” to the IMF, which has conducted most of its deliberations, meetings, and consultations in secret.

Simon Johnson is pro-IMF, like the authors of that book.

On the The New York Times website, he offhandedly dismisses Latin American populism with a reference to an outdated, far-right, academically dishonest book – all in an article that challenges the U.S. elite by praising populism. This is a compelling example of the imperial double standard that keeps “pro-populist” commentators from seeing what is going on in developing countries.

The book you are praising is referred to an “outdated, far-right, academically dishonest book.” I believe that is correct.

But even if the Times’ readers never learn of Latin America’s protracted struggle for self-determination against U.S. power, the region is now a breeding ground for the most constructive values associated with populism. More than a decade of successful revolts has allowed for the elections of independent left governments in most of South America and has brought enormous gains to the poor majority through greater economic sovereignty and democratic social reform. Or as Kissinger might put it, Latin America has unraveled.

See? For the last 20 years, excellent populist economic policies in Latin America have brought enormous gains for the poor majority. According to E and D, it should have been catastrophic.

Alt Left: The US Imperialist Regime Change Playbook: Engage in Violent and Seditious Activities Towards the Targeted Government, Provoke Repression, and then Impose Sanctions, Fund Contras, or Sponsor a Fascist Coup to “Restore Order and Democracy”

In Venezuela and Nicaragua, the US staged violent riots with armed insurgents that attempted to overthrow the government, and then slammed sanctions on the governments when they cracked down on the seditious traitors. Obviously when you crack down on seditious traitors, it’s hard to be real democratic about it, as you start to throw lots of traitors in jail, shut down their treasonous organizations and political parties, forbid the seditious political parties and politicians from running for office again, and often have to start censoring the media because of the frankly murderous lies that the opposition yellow press prints, which actually results in getting a lot of people killed.

During these seditious coup attempts, the reporting is completely dishonest in the US and about as fake as you can get. Outrageous acts of murder committed by the putschists are breathlessly reported by the treasonous local and overseas US press and having been committed by the government, working people into a fever pitch. Opposition fascist liars flood social media, riling everyone up.

But do you see how they provoke repression? This is the imperialist playbook. Provoke repression with illegal and seditious activities, and then scream dictatorship when the law enforcement arms of the state try to restore some order. Wave after wave of sanctions were slammed on the Nicaraguan government by Democrats and Republicans both. When it comes to support for imperialism and alliance with the forces of violent revolutionary fascism and reaction around the world along with rightwing and fascist dictatorships in power, support for fascist states and forces is a bipartisan affair.

The US supports the fascist opposition in Mexico, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Bolivia, Peru, Belarus, and Ukraine. The US supports the fascist states of Turkey, Israel, India, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Brazil, Honduras, and Haiti and opposes the anti-fascist forces fighting against them. Face it, America loves rightwing dictatorships and fascist governments and opposition forces.

Alt Left: The Playbook of US Imperialism: Everything They Say Is the Opposite of What Really Happened

This analysis is based on the theory that US imperialism and Western imperialism for that matter is basically fascist. Not that our societies are fascist themselves because we have managed to insulate ourselves from this. But European jerkoffs spend most of their time running around the globe trying to deny the Third World even the barest social democracy that has made Europe so livable.

Modern Western Liberalism: Liberalism at Home, Fascism Abroad

How else you can you explain how Europe attacked social democracy in Latin America in Mexico, Haiti, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Brazil, Bolivia, El Salvador, Honduras, Peru, and Colombia? Social democracy at home, fascism abroad. This is the project of the Europeans nowadays, and NATO spearheads this project. In the US it is similar, social liberalism at home, fascism abroad, at least for the Democratic Party. Canada has something between social liberalism and social democracy, and their politics is for this project at home and fascism abroad.

When reporting about hot button issues abroad in the West, keep in mind that everything you read about countries the West is hostile to is really the opposite of what really is or what really happened.

Everything Is the Opposite of What It Really Is

With fascists and fascist supporters like the US, everything is the opposite of what it really is.

Elections That Never Make Sense

Rightwing governments that use fraud to steal elections are restoring democracy.

Leftwing governments that win elections always win due to fraud because of course they cannot win any other way. As soon as they get in power, no matter how much freedom they allow, they are always authoritarian dictatorships. The elections that government has, even if they are models of fair elections, are always marred by massive fraud.

Rightwing governments that overturn these legitimate elections and steal them for the Right are always uncovering the massive fraud. The resulting election theft is called by the New York Times and US government “restoring democracy.”

When the Venezuelan fascist coup overthrew the democratic government of Hugo Chavez in 2002, the US government and the New York Times lauded the “restoration of democracy and end of dictatorship” that the fascist coup (the fascist coup was a restoration of democracy) against a democratic government (the democratic government was a dictatorship) represented.

The US/NATO Fascist Playbook: Mysterious Snipers Shooting at Both Sides

Fascist gangs usually supported by the US and/or NATO, a fascist military organization in Europe, open fire on both security forces and and either left or rightwing rioters. Fascist forces often fire on their own people and blame it on the government as a pretext for a coup to overthrow the government. This is what happened in the US-supported fascist Maidan Coup in Ukraine. When the fascist gangs open fire, the US turns it into leftwing security forces opening fire on leftwing mobs and security forces.

See the 2002 coup in Venezuela, where fascist gangs operating from overpasses shot and killed 32 people, all Chavista protestors or Chavista Venezuelan security forces, then feverishly blamed the government forces for shooting at their own supporters and comrades in arms. The US media tripped over itself reporting how the Left had opened fire on itself, massacring 32 of their own people. It took some time to straighten it all out.

Sanctions

The local fascists and the US also destroy the economy with economic war or sanctions, and then the US and the fascists scream that the Left government has destroyed the economy with its “socialist policies.” Of course it was really the economic war and the sanctions, but no matter. Even notice how all US articles on the Iranian and Venezuelan economies blame the government for the economic and social crisis that was deliberately caused by US sanctions?

Syria

In Syria, gangs of Al Qaeda-linked Islamists (Salafist Islamist like Al Qaeda and ISIS linked forces resemble fascists in many ways) raided villages full of government supporters and murdered everyone inside. Then these same forces screamed that the Syrian government had raided an opposition village and killed all the opposition people inside. The US and Western media then flooded the news with reports that the war criminal Assad has committed another massacre.

There have been 10-20 huge massacres of whole villages in the Syrian Civil War. The US, the West and the Islamists all claim that they were all done by Assad. If you go to Wikipedia and look up all of these massacres, it will tell you that they were all done by Assad.

I researched every one of those massacres in depth.

They were all done by the Free Syrian Army, who are Al Qaeda linked Islamists who burned down churches in every city and town they conquered. The villages massacred were inhabited by Sunni government supporters, Alawites, and Christians. All three groups were feverish supporters of the government. The US continues to state that all of these cases were massacres of opposition supporters by Assad’s forces.

That’s like I set your house on fire and then stand outside screaming about what an arsonist you are as you try to put out the fire. I call the fire department and they arrest you for arson while you’re hosing the building and thanking me, still holding kerosene and matches, for being such a good citizen as they walk by back to their trucks.

The Ties Between Fascism and US Imperialism Are Deep

This is basically how the US and all other forces linked to Western imperialism run their foreign policy. And every government in Europe that is a member of NATO, I’m talking to you. NATO is basically a fascist army. As you can see, the ties between fascism and imperialism are deep. In modern imperialism, the West goes around the world installing fascist and rightwing dictatorships and supporting fascist forces that are trying to overthrow leftwing governments. Not all of the governments it supports are fascists, but all are rightwing, at least in Latin America.

Alt Left: Sunni Hatred and Paranoia of the Shia and Iran: One of the Stupidest Forms of Bigotry On Earth

Almost all Sunni morons, even Pakistanis, believe that Iran wants to control the Middle East. The extreme versions say Iran wants to conquer all of the Sunni Arabs and rule over them. Almost all Sunni Arabs actually believe this crap. This thinking is especially prominent in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, the Gulf (except possibly Qatar), Lebanon, to some extent in Jordan, and Egypt and Sudan to a somewhat weak extent.

Further west in Africa, the Sunnis do not give two shits about Iran. Nor do the rest of the African Sunnis. Nor do they Turks although they hate and persecute their own Shia. Nor do the Muslims of the Caucasus, Russia, and the Stans. In Afghanistan it is particularly stupid because Afghanistan is largely Iranic culturally and even linguistically, particularly in the West. Some of the bigger warlords such as Ismail Khan over there in the west in Herat were actually openly pro-Iran.

Shias are persecuted pretty brutally in Pakistan. Sunni Salafists regularly attack their rallies with suicide bombers, killing many people. The jihadi group LET, which fights in Kashmir, is viciously anti-Shia.

No one quite knows where this comes from but it seems that anyplace where there are lots of Shia, they Shia are hated by the Sunnis.

They are persecuted by Sunni majorities in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, but not in Yemen or Syria, although there are vicious anti-Shia groups there. Sunni minorities in Lebanon and Iran and particularly in Iraq are very anti-Shia. However, the Iranian Sunnis are not treated right at all, although they have 28,000 mosques in Iran. W

hen you get over to North Africa, there are just not any Shia to hate. What’s a Shia? That’s what the North African says.

Palestinians were typically anti-Shia and especially anti-Iran historically because Arab nationalist idiots hate Iran for no good reason, as I elaborated above. Hamas caused a lot of controversy in Palestine for being so close to Iran since they were Sunnis, but they are not stupid. Recently they supported the Sunni Syrian opposition, which enraged the Syrian government. At the same time, Palestinians in Syria formed pro-government militias and fought on the side of the government, though a few went over to the jihadi opposition.

ISIS took over a large Palestinian refugee camp in Damascus for a time and the Palestinians were smeared as ISIS supporters because of this. But most Palestinians in that camp disliked ISIS. The camp is called Yarmouk, and is one of the worst hellholes in Syria. I think there may be delays in rebuilding because of government suspicion that residents sided with ISIS. So Hamas was aligned with Hezbollah, Syria, Iran, the Houthis, the Iraqi Shia, and Iran, and then like complete tools they let their bigotry get the best of them and supported the Sunni jihadis in Syria. However, Syria and Hamas have patched up their relationship.

This is especially odd considering how poorly the Shia have been treated. Before the rise of Hezbollah, the Sunnis in Lebanon would not let the Shia work at any job more respectable than a trash collector. They were like Dalits in India. Imagine that you were in the Jim Crow South and the Whites were all possessed by paranoid fantasies that the Blacks were going to declare war on the Whites, conquer them and rule over the Whites, treating them as inferiors. Crazy, right? This is how Sunnis feel about Iran. They’re all nutcases. It’s also projection, see?

But the Palestinians have become very pro-Iran these days since only Iran has stepped up to the plate to support the Palestinians and only the Shia are supporting the Palestinians at all. The Sunni Arabs would much rather kill the Shia than fight Israel, though the latter obviously is more important and the former has no importance at all.

The only significant help the Palestinians are getting is from the Shia Houthis in Yemen, the Shia Hezbollah in Lebanon, Syria, a Shia-led regime in a majority Sunni country, Shia Iran, and pro-Iranian militias in Iraq that are now formally part of the Iraqi Army itself.

They have gotten help from Jordanians who massed at the border and tried to break through, but those were probably mostly Palestinian refugees, as they make up 70% of the population but frankly lack representation in the government, which is a monarchy. Mobs tried to rush the Lebanese border too, but those were probably mostly Shia. Quite a few of them may also have been Palestinian refugees because there are a number of large refugee camps in Southern Lebanon.

It is true that large majorities in Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Sudan, Jordan, Lebanon, Yemen, Kuwait, and Qatar support the Palestinians, and there is also a lot of support for them in Turkey and Pakistan. These supporters are mostly Sunnis. But the average person does not rule in the Arab World and dictatorships are the rule. It is these dictatorships that have been selling out and making peace with Israel lately, the most outrageous of which has been the UAE, which has apparently gone full Zionist. They’re simply traitors.

However, the Saudis and Emiratis have brainwashed their populations, which used to strongly support the Palestinians but who know repeat the programmed lie that “the Palestinians are not our problem.

A while back, mobs stormed the Israeli border with Syria in the Golan and quite a few of them were killed. These were probably mostly Sunni Syrians though there may have been a lot of Palestinian refugees among them, as there are quite a few in Syria.

There was some anti-Shia sentiment when Islamic Jihad was formed because this Sunni group took inspiration from the Iranian revolution.

There was a rumor that the original Sunni leader converted to Shiism and this caused something of a scandal. The Sunnis are all absolutely terrified that Iran is going to conquer and dominate them and in the process force them to convert to Shiism. The truth is almost zero Sunnis ever convert to Shiism.

Shiism is simply not a proselytizing religion, whereas Sunnism is. One of the main complaints of the Houthis was that Saudi Arabia was sponsoring Wahhabi preachers to come into the north of Yemen and convert the Shia to Sunni Wahhabism. This roused up quite a bit of anger amid the Shia and it was a major reason for the Houthi Revolution. Once again you can see that Sunnis are projecting with their terror of the Shia forcibly converting them to Shiism.

Hamas has aligned very closely with Iran, but so have the Salah-al-Din Brigades, the Al-Aqsa Martyr’s Brigades rejectionists who took up arms in various formations, and the PFLP. I have heard that there is a portrait of Soleimani in every home in Gaza.

Alt Left: Anti-Aircraft Missile Lands Near Dimona

About a month ago, Israeli jets attacked Syria for the umpteenth time. They’ve probably attacked them a thousand times since the war started. Of course, Syria can’t lift one finger to hit back because of they do, those (((dogs in Israel))), like all (((bullies))), will say that they got attacked for no reason and now they have to defend themselves.

And they’ve threatened to raze Syria to the ground if Syria so much as looks at them wrong when they get attacked. That’s the bully. The bully beats you up all the time, all the while saying you are attacking him. Israel bombs Syria constantly, all the while saying Syria is attacking it.

If you dare to fight back against the bully even one time, he goes completely crazy and tries to destroy you in some way or another.

That is because you, the victim, are not allowed to retaliate against the bully. It is as if you are upsetting the whole fabric of the bullying itself. It’s a slave rebellion and you know how outraged masters get when slaves fight back. So Israel is just a typical 8th grade punk that everyone hates going around beating up on all the weaker, wimpier, or effeminate boys. America is also a bully country. In fact, we are the biggest bully in the whole world. So naturally we form an alliance with the Israeli bully as bullies tend to befriend other bullies.

Sometimes shells from the Syrian Civil War go errant and fly into the Golan Heights. Syria attacks the Syrian Army every time this happens, saying it “holds Syria responsible for any shells that come over its border.” Except the shells are often launched by the rebels. Syria is not allowed to fight back against these attacks because Israel threatens to destroy Syria if it lifts a finger against it.

Israel, of course, in tribute to its kind, humanitarian nature, has been treating ISIS and Al Qaeda rebels in Syria. All they have to do is present themselves at the border saying they’re wounded and it’s a first class ticket to an Israeli hospital. But the US, UK, France, Turkey, Qatar, UAE, and Saudi Arabia have also been supporting Al Qaeda and ISIS in Syria. In the case of Al Qaeda, a while back, a former East German journalist who now works for a German newspaper who is somehow not completely cucked got an interview with an Al Qaeda commander in a cave in Aleppo Province.

The commander was emphatic that US, UK, Turkish, Ermirati, Saudi, Israeli, and US intelligence officers were all embedded with Al Qaeda forces in Syria. In fact, when Aleppo was being liberated by the Syrian Army, Syria announced that 10 US intelligence officers were still holed up in the last strongholds of the city. Syria said the US was demanding that they be allowed to evacuate their Al Qaeda-embedded US spies. The Syrian government even published a list of the  10 spies. The execrable Samantha Power, a Democrat (!) was having hissy fits in Aleppo while all of this was going on. Even Biden admitted that we had been supporting Al Qaeda and ISIS in Syria for a long time.

Anyway, Israel was bombing Syria as usual, and Syria fired some Anti-air missiles at the Israeli jets, which it missed as usual. One was an F-5 Anti-aircraft missile. These missiles have a short range and if they miss their target, they are programmed to simply fall towards the ground and explode, I believe in the air.

At around this time, there was a huge blast from a missile or a rocket 20 miles north of the Dimona nuclear plant in Dimona, Israel. Israel quickly reported that an F-5 Syrian missile fired at an Israeli jet over the Golan traveled all the down to Dimona and blew up on the ground. First of all, I don’t think they blow up on the ground. Second of all, an F-5 missile does not have a very long range, surely not all the way down to Dimona. Third, even if it did blow up on the ground, it would not make a very big explosion, not as large as the one reported. Fourth, it somehow managed to completely evade the Iron Dome and all Israeli radars. Fifth, as I noted, it would have blown up in the air after it missed the jet.

A colleague of mine, E.J. Magnier, wrote an article saying everything above. He also said that the attack was not done by a anti-air missile but by a ballistic missile, a Fajr-110. It flies very fast so it can evade the Iron Dome, besides I don’t think that Dome is much use against actual ballistic missiles. An interesting report from Veterans Today said that Russia used electronic warfare to jam the Iron Dome’s radars, enabling the ballistic missile to slip by unnoticed. I think there is something to it, but E.J. poo-pooed it in an email to me.

On the other hand, rejects a lot of stuff. He still believes that 2,800 pounds of unexplodable fertilizer somehow blew up in a harbor in Beirut because that is the lie that Hezbollah and Iran told him. Hez and Iran had reason to lie about the Israeli nuclear bomb attack on Beirut because it would be an extremely demoralizing thing to report to the Iranian and Lebanese people as it would imply an omnipotent Israel and there was no way for either Hezbollah or Iran to retaliate against Israel.

Anyway, it appears that that was a Syrian knockoff of an Iranian Fajr-110 ballistic missile. And it appears that Iran either helped launch it or gave it a go-ahead. And Russia may well have assisted with the electronic warfare because Israel was stunned that the missile got through. E.J. said it is because these missiles fly very fast, hence they can avoid the Iron Dome. I doubt if that is true. Anyway, this missile caused a huge explosion 20 miles north of Dimona in an open area. That missile has a targeting that causes it to land within 12 feet of where it is programmed to land. That is, it is a guided missile. So it was targeted to land just there.

This was a message to Israel from Syria and especially Iran to watch it. It was also payback for the endless attacks on Iran and Syria that Israel has engaged in. And it also said that we can shoot a missile that can hit your nuclear reactor, a huge ballistic missile that flies very fast, and we know how to make it invisible to your radars and anti-aircraft batteries.

In other words, paybacks from Iran and Syria.

The Languages of Spain

This is pretty nice for a rough draft, but I have a lot more information on all of these languages and dialects, including lots of links. But this should do for now.

Spanish or Castillian hit the other languages hard, but after the dictatorship things got a lot better.

Catalan is the official language of the region. Catalan is not part of Macro-Spanish.  Instead it is part of a larger family called Catalan-Occitan. I recently met several mostly-Castillian speakers from Catalonia and they told me that they all understood Catalan. Whether they spoke it or not was another matter. A young man there was a native speaker. Native Catalan speakers might be ~35% of the population, and many children are still being brought up in Catalan.

There are Catalan schools, Catalan media, Catalan as an official language in the government, etc. There is a huge pool of Catalan second-language speakers. There are probably not any Catalan monolinguals left, but if there are, it is some old lady in a tiny village in the mountains.

Island Catalan is a form of Catalan that is spoken on the Mallorca Islands in three different dialects. Some have difficult intelligibility with Catalan, and they are probably closer to Valencian. Whether these qualify as separate languages is not known. Mallorcan is one of these dialects of Catalan.

Valencian is spoken in Valencia and the Valencian speakers insist that they speak a different language from Catalan, although there is 94% intelligibility between the two. Catalan speakers do not want to break up the language. There is an Institute of the Valencian Language, an official orthography, etc. In particular, Valencians reject the Catalan orthography, as they say it does not suit the language that the speak. ~20% of Valencians speak Valencian. It is in much worse shape than Catalan. The Catalan authorities refuse to recognize Valencian as it is just a Catalan dialect, first, and second because they see Catalan as endangered and they do not wish to split it up.

Chapurillo is a form of Catalan spoken in La Franga and the Strip in Aragon that speakers say is a separate language. There are regular calls to have it recognized. However, Catalan speakers say that they understand this variety perfectly. Nevertheless, an attempt to call this dialect Catalan and have it translated into English resulted in a big mess. Its name is a variation on the term churro, etc. which means more or less broken Spanish or bad Spanish.

Many of the languages above are called churros or chapurros, and many Spaniards think they are just forms of broken Spanish spoken by poorly educated people. Even speakers of the languages often think that they simply speak broken Spanish or bad Spanish and are often ashamed of their speech and refuse to speak it. Speaking churro also implies ignorance, rural residence, poverty, lack of intelligence, etc. Any effort to get this lect recognized would run into a lot of opposition from the Catalan government, which would say is is just a form of Catalan, which in fact it is.

Aragonese is still spoken in Aragon. It is not fully intelligible with Castillian, and it is a separate language. This region was under the crown of Aragon, hence a different speech evolved here. It sounds a lot like Spanish. There are 30,000 Aragonese speakers. It is an official language in the state of Aragon, but Spain refuses to recognize it as it is seen as Macro-Spanish, which it is. It was formerly spoken in three forms like Extremaduran, and like that language, only the remote northern form survives.

Otherwise Southern Aragonese and Central Aragonese turned into dialects of Spanish called Aragonese Spanish. Aragonese is spoken in the very high mountains of the Pyrenees in villages that are often almost totally depopulated. There are still children being brought up in Aragonese though, especially around the Benasquesque-speaking region. The children show up at school as Aragonese monolinguals.

Churro is a Spanish dialect called spoken around La Franja on the border of Aragon and Catalonia. It is probably the most diverse dialect in Spain. It seems to be a form of Aragonese Spanish with a lot of Catalan or Valencian mixed in. It is not known how widely spoken this dialect is anymore. It’s apparently intelligible with Spanish, but an attempt to call a Churro text Spanish and translate it into English resulted in a complete mess.

Basque is actually doing quite well. ~20% of the population are native speakers, and there are quite a few second language speakers. There are Basque schools, Basque media, Basque signage, on and on. I recently met a young college-aged man who was a Basque native speaker. Quite a few children are still being brought up in Basque. I am not sure if there are any Basque monolinguals left. Basque is not related to any of the languages spoken in Spain. It is the remains of the original language of the area before it was conquered by the Romans. Basque is recognized as by the Spanish government.

Souletin is absolutely a separate language from Basque Proper or Official Basque. There are other dialects including Guipuzcaon and a few others which may also be separate languages, but that is much less clear. Souletin is spoken in France, where Basque is spoken by only 10% of the population.

Asturian-Leonese is a major language spoken in northern to northwestern Spain between Basque and Extremaduran and Galician. To the south, it extends to the Portuguese border. It consists of two major dialects, Asturian and Leonese and countless dialects therein. However, comprehension appears good between all of the Asturian and Leonese dialects, except that part of Eastern Asturian in the north and Eastern Leonese in far south have turned into a separate language called Extremaduan-Cantabrian.

Asturian one part of the Asturian-Leonese language. It is still very much alive, although it is not an official language of Spain. It is an official language of the state of Asturias. ~20% of Asturians speak Asturian and I believe there are children still being brought up in Asturian.

Leonese is the same language as Asturian spoken to the south and is in much worse shape. It is also not an official language of Spain, but it is an official language of Castille and Leon where it is spoken. Amazingly, there are still Leonese monolinguals in the high mountains in Northwestern Castille and Leon. Leonese was their first language and they learned Spanish in school but subsequently forgot Spanish and now speak only Leonese.

There are still children being brought up in Leonese in the tiny depopulated villages in the mountains of Southeastern Castille and Leon near the Portuguese border. This form of Leonese is often called Porteno, and it is quite close to the Mirandese language spoken in Portugal. Asturian-Leonese is seen as part of the general Castillian language family, but this is not really true.

Mirandese is spoken in a small part of northwestern Portugal by 15,000 people. It is a form of Asturian-Leonese that came under heavy Portuguese influence and became a separate language. It is similar to the Porteno form of Central Leonese spoken near the Portuguese and Galician borders of Castille and Leon.  Mirandese proper is spoken in Portugal, but other dialects of it are spoken in a few small villages on the Spanish-Portuguese borders. Most of these are considered to be extinct, but recent field trips found that they are still spoken in a few of these places.

Rio de Onorese is a tiny lect spoken in Rio de Onoro, a village on the Portuguese border. Half of the village is in Spain, half of the village is in Portugal and all residents are fluent in both languages. Everyone thinks this language is extinct, but if you go to the village, you will see it is still spoken there. It is a form of Mirandese spoken in Spain and should be recognized. It is a form of Asturian-Leonese as Mirandese is part of that language family. As a form of Asturian-Leonese, this is not recognized by the Spanish government. However, Mirandese is recognized by the Portuguese government.

Eonavian-Ibino is a separate language spoken between Asturian/Leonese and Galician. Locally it is referred to as fabla. It is a completely separate language but no one will recognize it as such. It even has an organization for the standardization of the language. The name Eonavian is a reference to the Eo and Nava rivers in the area where it is spoken. Ibino is this same language spoken in the southern part of the Eonavian area and it borders Leonese instead of Asturian.

Galician speakers cannot fully understand Ibino. It is closer to Galician but it is not Galician. At one time, maybe 75-100 years ago, this was a Galician dialect, and the older generation still understands Galician completely. The younger generation does not understand Galician so well, as they have not been exposed to it as much. So in a sense this is a new language or an emergent language. There are still many native speakers of Ibino and Eonavian.

As is usual in such cases (see Benasquesque below) the language institutes of both the Asturian/Leonese language and the Galician language have claimed this language. It’s certainly not Asturian/Leonese. A much better case can be made that it is Galician, and it was a Galician dialect until quite recently. However, Eonavian informants state that when they go to Galicia, they speak Castillian to Galician speakers results in too many misunderstandings. Since both Asturian/Leonese and Galician claim this lect a dialect of their languages, Spain does not recognize it.

Galician is is a separate language spoken in Galicia that is close to Portuguese. It is still doing quite well. ~35% of the population of Galicia speak Galician. Almost all also speak Castillian. It is an official language of Galicia and Spain. There are Galician schools. There is some Galician media but not nearly enough. You hear Galician a lot more in the rural areas than in the big cities.

A very Castillianized Official Galician is used in the media, and it has high intelligibility with Spanish of 78%. A much harder Galician is spoken in the villages in the mountains where intelligibility with Spanish is as low as 40%. The form of Galician spoken in the far south on the border with Portugal is not intelligible with Portuguese or the rest of Galician and is not understood outside the region. It is actually a separate language, though no one will recognize it.

Minhoto is a form of Galician that is spoken in and around the Minho region of Portugal and the part of Galicia neighboring it to the north. It is generally not understood outside the region. It appears to be an aberrant form of Galician that perhaps came under heavy Portuguese influence.

Fala is a language spoken in the far northwest of Extremadura near the Portuguese border. It is spoken in four different dialects in as many towns. It is still very widely spoken as a native language in all of these towns. This is Old Galician from the 1200’s that got isolated from the rest of the language and underwent heavy influence from Leonese, especially the Asturian-Leonese language spoken in Portugal called Mirandese.

Technically this is not a separate language as Galician speakers understand it perfectly, but it is nevertheless recognized as a language by SIL. Fala speakers reject the Galician orthography as far from what they speak, adding ammunition to the notion that this is a separate language. Spain does not recognize this language for whatever reason, but if it is a part of Galician, it should at least be recognized as that.

Portuguese is spoken in a few places in Spain on the border of Portugal, mostly in the South around Extremadura and Bajadoz. These are forms of Old Portuguese dating from the 13th to the 16th Centuries. However, they all seem to be fully intelligible with Portuguese. They are mostly spoken by the elderly now.

Oliveno is a form of Portuguese heavily mixed with Spanish that is spoken on the border of Portugal. It’s not Portuguese; it is actually a separate language. It still has ~3,000 speakers. It is spoken in a single village. Officials refuse to recognize this language, and Portugal says it is just Portuguese, but Portuguese speakers can’t understand it at all. Spain refuses to recognize it for whatever reason, but if the argument is that it is just a form of Portuguese, then it should be recognized.

Extremaduan-Cantabrian is a language spoken to the east of Asturian in the north and to the south of Leonese in the south. These are parts of Eastern Asturian-Leonese that got isolated in the mountains of Cantabria and Extremadura and split off from the rest 500 years ago. In the north, it went into Cantabrian and in the south, it turned into Extremaduran.

Extremaduran is still spoken in Extremadura by 100,000 speakers. It is a highly Castillianized form of Eastern Leonese that got cut off from the rest of Leonese 400-500 years ago. Otherwise Eastern Leonese is nearly extinct. However, it is not intelligible with Asturian-Leonese. Extremaduran speakers say that if they go to Oveido in Central Asturias, they will not be understood. Nevertheless, this is part of the same language as Cantabrian, and these same speakers say that if they go to Cantabria, their Extremaduran will be understood. It is spoken in the mountains in tiny depopulating villages, which is where it originated.

One of my Castillian-speaking informants actually grew up in the region and has been hearing Extremaduran all his life, and he can only understand 17% of it. The accent is wild. There is much confusion, as Extremaduran is also called Castuo. Extremaduran is the northern form of Castuo from the mountains that survived, while Southern Castuo and Central Castuo turned into dialects of Spanish.

However there may be some “Extremaduran” spoken in the south too, as an informant has a word list from a tiny village in Bajadoz, and he said he could only understand 50% of the lexicon. This may be some far southern form of Extremaduran. Southern and Central Castuo are just Spanish dialects, albeit odd ones, but they are heavily spoken and often confused with Extremaduran because people refer to both by the same term. Extremaduran is an official language in Extremadura, but Spain refuses to recognize it because it is seen as part of the larger macro-Spanish although it is actually Asturian-Leonese.

Cantabrian is part of the same language as Extremaduran. This is the Asturian form of Asturian-Leonese that got cut off from the rest of Asturian 400-500 years ago and became very Castillianized. Cantabrian is not fully intelligible to Spanish speakers. It is still alive in the mountains where the children come to school as Cantabrian monolinguals, and the teachers from outside the region say that they can’t understand these children.

Mantegno is spoken in La Mancha and is part of a “Southern Castillian” that ranges to Andalucian and probably also includes Murcian. When Mantegno speakers go to Madrid, they say they are not understood. This is probably also a separate language. When spoken in rapid speech, intelligibility even with Castuo is 50%. Of course it is not recognized by the state as even native speakers hardly realize that it is a separate language.

Andalucian is mostly a Spanish dialect called Andalucian Spanish, albeit an extremely divergent one. However, there are a few villages in the mountains in the south where a hard Andalucian is spoken that is not intelligible even to other Andalucians. It would be valid to regard this form of Andalucian as a separate language, but no one is going to split it off.

There is also a hard Andalucian of the street associated with criminals and other street types. People from Northern Spain say they can’t understand it at all. There have been efforts to get Andalucian recognized by the state, but they always fail because all that remains is a Spanish dialect, and even if it were a separate language, Spain would argue that it is part of Macro-Spanish, which it is.

Murcian, spoken in Murcia, is mostly a Spanish dialect called Murcian Spanish, albeit quite a strange one. There are regular calls to have it recognized as an official language, but they go nowhere because it’s not really a separate language.

However, there is a hard form of it called Panocho spoken in the remote mountains in Eastern Murcia that cannot be understood outside the region. Andalucians cannot understand it either. It is probably a separate language. It has 6,000 speakers. There are efforts to get this recognized by the Spanish state, but they never go anywhere as what they try to legalize is simply a Spanish dialect called Murcian Spanish. The harder Panocho form would also not be recognized by Spain as they would see it as part of Macro-Spanish, which it is.

Aranese is a form of Occitan spoken in the tiny state of Andorra. It is still spoken by people of all ages, and children show up at school speaking Aranese. Although it is intelligible with the Occitan spoken directly across the border in the French Pyreneees, it is not fully intelligible with the rest of Occitan. It is not well understood by speakers of any of the surrounding speech forms. Aranese is actually recognized as a separate language by Spain.

Benasquesque is a form of speech spoken on the border of Catalonia and Aragon in the very high mountains that cannot be definitely shown to be either Catalan or Aragonese. It is certainly not Aragonese. It could be Catalan, but a Catalan informant told me that this lect is absolutely not Catalan. However, the official language institutes of Catalan and Aragon both claim these speech forms.

But as is usual in these cases, they are both wrong and it is a separate language altogether. This is a very remote mountain region. This is a sort of microlanguage transitional between Aragonese and Catalan. Since both Aragonese and Catalan language institutes claim this language, it is not recognized by Spain and there are no attempts to get it recognized.

Alt Left: Yes, There is Little Classism in Muslim Countries (Because It’s Against Islam)

James Schipper: Was it really very different (highly classist) in Islam?

Yes, Islamic countries are just not like that.

I can’t think of any Arab country that is like that.

No North African country is like that.

Neither Malaysia nor Afghanistan nor the Caucasus nor Xinjiang nor the Stans is not like that. However, Afghanistan was feudal or semi-feudal until recently. That’s why Communism was fairly popular there. An outsider went there in the 1950’s, and he saw groups of young men chanting with their fists in the air, “Kill the rich!” I suppose the Communist revolution did a land reform and got rid of this feudal land tenure system.

Communism was an easy sell in Bosnia and Albania, but Islam is weak there.

Corruption is a bad problem in the Arab World and a rich elite bled Lebanon dry for decades, but they are widely hated, and there is little to no class hatred in Lebanon.

I can’t see any class hatred in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Algeria, Libya, Tunisia, Sudan, Somalia, Jordan, Yemen, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, or even in UAE.

I’ve never heard of any real classism in the Sahel, but no one there has any money anyway.

The only African countries with a history of classism were the apartheid states of Rhodesia and South Africa, but there it was racialized, and the classism was imported from Christian Europe. Classism among the Whites of these states themselves was not a problem.

Angola has become very unequal due to oil wealth, but the system is not popular, and most people are ending up poor. They had a successful Communist revolution that remained in power for a long time. The anti-Communist rebels didn’t even have much ideology. Jonas Savimbi of UNITA started out as a Maoist and switched to rightwing capitalist to get money from the West for his revolution.

Africa just doesn’t have a history of European classism. It was always a relatively egalitarian village society. Sure, the chiefs were rich, but they were supposed to provide for everyone.

All of the Gulf Arab states have such extensive social democracies that in a lot of cases, you hardly even have to work. Education and health care is free and housing may be subsidized. UAE is a very rich country and capitalism roars right along, but I don’t see a lot of class hatred. For one thing, everyone in the Gulf is well-off.

As I said, it was different before. Read Ghassan Khanafani (one of the founders of the PFLP) on the lives of fellahin or peasants in debt bondage in semi-feudal Palestine in the 1930’s. Nasser did a land reform in Egypt in the 50’s and he was a hero all over the Arab World. People said they went to Yemen in the 1960’s, and there were Nasser portraits everywhere in the homes of working class people. Nasser’s land reform set off a wave of land reforms in the Arab World. In Syria and Iraq, they were done by the socialist Baath Party. There was never much resistance to the Baath’s socialism. There were large state sectors and good social democracies. Even Saddam was basically a socialist.

Bangladesh is a problem. Pakistan has been discussed but it is Indianized and Hinduized. The same problem may be going on in Bangladesh. The class hatred is vicious in India, but it’s coded as caste hatred instead. So Pakistan and Bangladesh have a sort of Hinduized Islam. But the poverty and class hatred is not nearly as bad in those two states as it is in India and Nepal.

Bahrain and Indonesia are problems for whatever reasons but in Indonesia they had to kill 1 million Communists to get their crappy rightwing capitalist dictatorship. And in the last several years they have been led by a social democrat.

Turkey does have problems with its capitalist class in terms of exploitation of workers. After World War 2, there was a Communist revolution and the Commies almost won. However, there is a huge underground Leftist and Communist movement that regularly sets the factories and yachts of the rich on fire! They’re quite popular. The Kurdish PKK was also Left. Islam is rather weak in Turkey though, and Turkey is Europeanized. Erdogan is actually quite socialist. He’s more socialist than Biden. His brand is Islamism is heavy on the social justice end.

 

Alt Left: Christianity Is Anti-Capitalist?

Christianity Is Anti-Capitalist?

James Schipper: Still, theologically, Christianity is not a capitalism-friendly religion. There is nothing in the NT which encourages wealth accumulation or expresses admiration for the rich. In earlier times, there were very rich monasteries but also monastic orders which are committed to poverty, such as the Franciscans. These monasteries were rich for the same reason that Harvard and Yale are very rich. They became rich through donations and bequests.

Sure, theologically it may be so, but in practice, capitalism, extreme inequality, and class hatred have been accommodated in Christian countries quite easily.

You can say that Christianity is against capitalism all you want, but it hasn’t worked out that way in the West.

Social democracy was an easy sell in Europe, but the US is worse classwise than any European country. In the US we almost have a celebration of inequality and that’s somehow been accommodated with the Christianity, which seems weird. The Gospel of Wealth the Evangelicals practice here strikes me as downright heretical though. If Jesus was around, he’d reject it.

Feudalism lasted a long time in Europe, and early capitalism in England was horrible from the 1300’s-1800’s. England is terribly classist even today, but there’s a huge backlash. Thatcher was burned in effigy all over the UK when she died. Can you imagine that happening with Reagan in the US? The class hatred in the UK is pretty raw.

Classism in France was awful, but they killed their rich, and now it’s socialist.

Germany never had a vicious capitalist class. The Kaiser put in the first social democracy in the late 1800’s. It went over easily.

Italy’s never been all that classist, nor has Greece. After World War 2 in Italy, Communists were set to win local elections all over Italy but the US CIA got involved and there was massive election fraud that cheated them out of a victory. But Eurocommunists have been running states in Italy for decades, especially in the North. They’ve had a heavy emphasis on small business at the expense of big business and it’s worked great. I had a commenter on here who owned a small factory in a northern state and he loved the local Communist government. And he was a capitalist! In Greece, the Communists almost won a revolution.

I don’t think Eastern Europe has been classist. Communism went over easily there.

Communism went over easily in Yugoslavia too, though it was a modified form. It was also very popular. I know people who lived there, and they loved it. They almost won in Turkey too.

The Baltics are not classist and neither is Scandinavia. That area is all based on egalitarianism.

Spain and Portugal were classist, but there was a civil war in Spain, and it’s a pretty socialist country right now.

There was a Leftist Carnation Revolution in 1974 that overthrew Salazar’s fascism and a Leftist regime was nearly installed. It was very popular.

Alt Left: Right and Left in Islamic and Catholic Societies

If you’re not careful, the media will have you hating the people who are being oppressed and cheering the people doing the oppressing.

Malcolm X

This is precisely the function of the media in a capitalist society. The Chinese media is not like this because, duh, China is not a capitalist country! Nor is the Iranian media because Iran is not a capitalist country. In fact, Iran is almost something like “Islamic Communism.” I’m not wild about Ayatollah Khomeini, but he did have a strong social justice streak.

The Revolution was populist, pro-independence, and anti-imperialist. Iran is almost based on a Muslim version of Liberation Theology or “the preferential option of the poor.” The social safety net is huge in Iran. Also, much of the economy is run by the state. It’s actually run by religious charities, often with ties to the military and the IRGC. I believe these religious charities do not operate at a profit. Small businesses are not bothered at all, as in all Muslim countries. I was reading Ayatollah Khameini’s tweets for a while on Twitter, and I could have been reading Che Guevara. Basically the same message.

Islam is just not friendly to neoliberal economics or radical individualism. It is a very collectivist religion in a very collectivist society.

Neoliberalism hasn’t caught on much of anywhere in the Muslim world other than Indonesia and the Southern Philippines, and they had to murder 1 million Communists in cold blood to get there in Indonesia and the Moros have always rejected Catholic rule in both a political and economic sense. it is notable that the Maoist NPA are also huge in Mindanao, home of the Moros.

Pakistan, too, has inherited the selfish economics and even feudalism in land tenure straight from Indian Hinduism. They even have caste, which would be considered an aberration in any decent Muslim society.

All of the Arab countries are basically socialist at least in name, and that was never a hard sell there. It’s true that 100 years ago, the Arab lands were mostly feudal in nature, with big landowners and peasants in debt bondage. They rich had co-opted the religious authorities like they always do, and the mullahs preached that Islamic feudalism was right and proper because the Prophet had said, “It is normal that some are rich and some are poor.” But it was always a hard sell, and it had a very weak foundation.

After independence, socialism was instituted in most if not all Arab countries at least in name. In particular, huge land reforms were done in Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Yemen, Libya, and Palestine. I assume something like that was done in Algeria too. It was a very easy sell, and everyone went along with it without a hitch. The mullahs quickly changed from support for feudalism to support for socialism.

Hamas rules Gaza and I was shocked at how huge the social safety net is. The many religious charities run the safety net, which is distributed under the rubric of Islam. This is done instead of the state doling it out.

Mohammad himself didn’t have much to say about economics, but he wasn’t a neoliberal capitalist or a feudalist.

In Christian societies, the rich have utter contempt and hatred for the poor, who they regard as little more than human garbage. If you want to see this philosophy in action, look at the classism in Latin America. As all Muslims are part of the umma, and hence, as all are brothers and sisters, it is simply unconscionable that wealthy Muslims would be able to openly hate poor Muslims. You simply cannot treat your fellow Muslims like that. It’s not officially haram but it might as well be.

European Style Fascism in the Middle East

It is instructive that the only place in the Arab world where neoliberal economics and in particular Libertarianism took hold was in Lebanon, and even there, it was only among Catholic Maronites. Most Arab Christians look east to Antioch (and before that, Constantinople) to the Eastern Orthodox church, which is really just the eastern wing of Catholicism.

The Maronites, though, deride Antioch and instead look to Rome. They see themselves as European people instead of Arabs. Many deny that they are Arabs and instead refer to themselves as “Phoenicians.” It is interesting that the only real classical fascism in the Arab World  took hold in the Lebanese Maronites, where the Gameyels imported it from Europe in the 1930’s.

The Jews of Israel also developed a very European form of fascism starting with Jabotinsky and his book The Iron Wall in 1921. This man was an open fascist. He is considered to be the spiritual father of the Likud Party. During the 1940’s, the armed Jewish rebels split into leftwingers who were almost Communists and rightwingers who were more or less fascists.

The Kahanists today look a lot like a European fascist party. And in fact, the entire Israeli rightwing around Likud, etc. looks pretty fascist in a European sense. So Israeli Jews are really Jewish fascists or fascist Jews. It has never been an easy ride for liberal and secular US Jews to support the Orthodox religious fanatics and rightwingers if not out and out fascists in the Likud, etc. in Israel. This was always completely unstable, and after that latest war, it’s finally starting to fall apart. But the seeds of destruction were already there.

But note that the Jews of Israel very much look to the West and see themselves as Europeans (which many are for all intents and purposes). They align themselves with the Judeo-Christian European society that many of them came from.

Half of Israeli Jews are Mizrachi Jews from the Arab World, and they have always had a Judeo-Islamic culture. However, when they moved to Israel, this was dismantled by perhaps not entirely. They rejected it due to the association of Arabs and Islam with the enemy, which is correct.

Economics and Catholicism

This radical classism and near-feudalism in Latin America was supported by the Catholic Church, which was always a very rightwing institution because they were always in bed with the rich. There were always Left splits in Catholicism like Dorothy Day and The Catholic Worker. The Catholic clergy in the US has tended to be quite leftwing.

There is a long history of “Catholic Communism” in the Philippines, Czechoslovakia, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, the Basque Country, France, Italy, Haiti, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, Chile, Cuba, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Argentina, and Uruguay. The IRA was a leftwing Catholic armed group. A lot of priests were caught hiding IRA cadre. So was the ETA in the Basque Country of Spain.

Catholic Leftism never caught on in Poland and Lithuania due to hatred of Russia and the USSR. Nevertheless, both are more or less socialist countries.

Even today there is an active “Catholic Communist” movement in Cuba that is very lively. In Honduras and Colombia, Catholic priests actually led guerrilla bands. Liberation Theoloy is something like “Jesus Christ with an AK-47.” The Leftist who recently took power in Paraguay was a former Catholic priest.

The ELN was founded by a priest, Camilo Torres, and many Catholic clergy even supported the Shining Path! Edith Lagos, a 20 year old woman, was the leader of a very early Shining Path column in Peru. She was killed in 1980 and the entire town of Ayacucho, 30,0000 people, came out for her funeral which was held at midnight. The lines of mourners stretched through the whole city. All of the priests in town blessed her body, and she was given a proper Catholic funeral.

I believe that the PT or Workers Party of Brazil has a large Liberation Theology component. The Catholic clergy had an excellent relationship with the FARC in Colombia. Of course, the Catholic clergy played a big role in Venezeula, and Hugo Chavez himself was a practicing Catholic. The FMLN Salvadoran rebels were explicitly Catholic, as were the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. One of the Sandinists’ top leaders, Tomas Borge, was a Catholic priest. Jean-Paul Aristide in Haiti was a Catholic priest. Catholic believers are now allowed to join the Communist Party in Cuba, and near the end of his life, Fidel Castro said he was a “cultural Catholic.”

After Vatican 2 and Liberation Theology began to spread out via the seminal documents written by Gustavo Gutierrez in Brazil, “A Theology of Liberation,” otherwise known as “exercising the preferential option for the poor,” it began to spread in Latin America. It started with local priests and especially Catholic lay workers in impoverished areas and then slowly spread. Even today, Catholic layworkers and especially seminaries are very leftwing, while the Vatican itself is not. A lot of seminaries are hotbeds of homosexuality, and the gay priests and lay workers are quite open about it. It is estimated that 15% of Catholic priests are gay.

Alt Left: Israel Versus Egypt and Lebanon

Polar Bear: Egyptians, Lebanese, etc. defeated Israel in battle, and they backed off.

Egypt

Egypt, sure. But Egypt also has to suck up to Israel as part of the peace deal. They also get $1.5 billion completely wasted tax dollars a year as part of the peace deal. Consider that $1.5 billion as more or less aid to Israel.

However, the peace between Israel and Egypt is a cold one indeed. Especially the ordinary people seriously hate Israel. The Israeli Embassy was burned to the ground by a mob of thousands of people a few years back. The entire staff had to flee. The cops just sat back and let the mob burn it to the ground. Curiously enough, the mob was not mostly Islamists. Sure, they were there too, but it was mostly Leftists, including quite a few Communists. There were a lot of women without hijab in that mob. At any rate, the Leftists and Islamists worked very well together.

It’s the same thing in Palestine, Lebanon, Jordan, Lebanon, and Israel proper. Both Islamists and Leftists in those places really hate Israel, so they get along swimmingly. There are two Marxist Palestinian groups who work very closely with Hamas!

For one thing, Leftists tend to be extreme rejectionists of making any sort of peace with Israel, so they have that in common with a lot of Islamists.

Obviously I am not including the Islamist sellout traitors in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE.

In Morocco and Sudan, sure, the governments made peace with Israel recently (because they were bribed to do so, as were the Gulf Arabs), but the people still hate Israel. The difference in opinion between the people and the regimes is vast in all of those US-allied Arab states. The only reason any of those US Arab allies are in power at all is because they have dictatorships. If they had real elections, no way would any civilians in the Arab world vote in a pro-Israel government, never, ever.

Truthfully, of all of the governments that recently recognized Israel (they didn’t make peace like the idiots keep saying because they were never at war recently anyway), only the UAE has excellent relations with Israel. The UAE is so friendly to Israel that it is almost bizarre. I guess they sold out the Palestinians for the $$. That’s all they care about anyway. They and the other Gulf traitors think they can make a lot of money working with Israel, and more than anything else, they want Israeli weapons systems.

They’ve all been allied with Israel forever anyway, but it’s always been behind the scenes, so no one saw it. The Saudis have been allied with Israel for a good 40 years. The Saudis used to own some islands in the Gulf of Aqaba. In 1979, the Israelis, with their usual charm, decided that those islands were really owned by Jews, so they demanded that the Saudis hand them over. The Saudis did just that and of course got nothing in return. They sold out to Israel like craven sissies.

However, Oman, Kuwait, Yemen, and especially Qatar do not have good relations with Israel at all. Qatar has long housed the leadership of Hamas. Khaled Meshal made an appearance there recently to a mob of cheering civilians.

In Egypt, an anti-US and anti-Israel Muslim Brotherhood (Ikwan) government that won with 75% of the vote was overthrown by secularists in the Army. The Army is secularist and they have been fighting Islamists in Egypt forever. The secularist army set about massacring innocent MB supporters who were sitting in in huge numbers in the capital. They would not vacate their sit-in, so the army started shooting them. They government has since cracked down very hard on all dissent.

In addition, Egypt maintains a terrible blockade on Gaza, an anti-Hamas blockade. The probable reason is because Hamas is the Muslim Brotherhood of Palestine, and the Egyptian government despises the Ikwan.

The Ikwan is also despised in Saudi Arabia and UAE, but this is due more to competition than anything else. This is why you see Islamist UAE and Saudi Arabia allying with Egypt and why you see the UAE arming the anti-government army in Libya where the UN-recognized government is the Ikwan. Turkey and Qatar support the Ikwan, so this is why you see Turkey in Libya supporting the government.

The Ikwan proper is often friendly to Iran because they figure the Iranians are very religious Muslims too. Hamas, Qatar, and Turkey enjoy good relations with Iran. This was strained for a bit when Hamas supported the Syrian rebels. The Iranians didn’t care that much, but the Syrians were very angry. Syria has now made up with Hamas. Sunni Hamas has excellent relations with Shia Hezbollah in Lebanon, the PMF in Iraq, Ansar Allah in Yemen, and Iran.

Hamas never talks about being Ikwan-Palestine because the Ikwan has always been unpopular in Palestine. Palestine is actually one of the more secular Arab states, a longstanding trend. 27% of Palestinians checked “not religious” on a recent survey. That’s typical for Palestine. They aren’t a bunch of raving Islamist maniacs.

Gaza is a very conservative society and has been for a long time. The West Bank is also pretty conservative but not as conservative as Gaza. In Israel proper, the Arabs are less conservative. In that famous recent video from Lod, those are young Arab women or teenage girls climbing that pole, tearing down the Israeli flag, and putting up the Palestinian flag to the cheers of a crowd below full of teenage girls and young women. None of them are wearing a hijab. But Lod is in Central Israel very close to Tel Aviv, which is the secular, SJW center of Israel, so there’s probably some bleed-over.

East Jerusalem probably has the most secular Arabs in Palestine for some reason. Why might that be? In videos of recent riots, many of the younger women were not wearing a hijab. In a lot of these communities, you often see teenage girls and young women not wearing a hijab while the older women still do.

But in Umm al Fahm in the Galilee, a famous nearly all-Arab town, most women wear the hijab.

Lebanon

Yes, Hezbollah eventually threw Israel out of Lebanon, but Hell no, has Israel backed off on Lebanon. See that nuclear bomb Israel dropped on Beirut a while back? You call that backing off? By the way, speaking of civilian populations hating Israel, the Lebanese probably are some of the worst Israel-haters in the Arab World.

Like Syria, Lebanon is still officially at war with Israel. Syria has been since 1973, but Lebanon has been since 1948. Both refused to sign an armistice. The Christian Maronite Phalange, however, are pro-Israel to some rather weak extent, but the rest of the Maronite Christians are with Hezbollah. The Greek Orthodox are represented by the Leftist, profoundly anti-Israel Syrian Social Nationalist Party. The Druze go back and forth, but Walid Jumbalatt has been a serious Israel-hater in his time. He’s just a guy who no principles of morals with his finger to the wind.

Opinion polls in Lebanon recently showed that 85% of the Lebanese population supported Hezbollah. That figure is lower now because of the Sunni-Shia split fanned by the US, Israel, the UAE, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia and to a much lesser extent by Jordan, Egypt, and Sudan, but it is still probably high.

What people don’t realize is that Lebanon has no real army. The true army of Lebanon, with much more power and capabilities than the Lebanese Army, is Hezbollah. The Lebanese Army has been deliberately kept weak by the West, with whom they are rather unstably allied. Notice that the Army worked for Israel in the latest conflict, arresting a few of the Hamas people in Southern Lebanon shooting Grad missiles at Israel and dismantling some rocket launchers. They’re traitors, or maybe they are just scared.