The Mumbai Massacres as the Defeat of Counter-terrorism

At the time I am writing these notes it is far from being clear what really happened in Mumbai. The questions I ask myself are the same ones most everyone else is asking: Who were the attackers? Who was behind them and what did they try to achieve? However one thing is evident. The War on Terror is a total disaster. The so-called ‘terrorists’, whoever they are, have won. America and its allies have been defeated.

But it doesn’t stop there, throughout this war America has lost its primacy as a super power. It is now financially ruined. Its leadership is regarded by most people around the world as a solid core of evil. It doesn’t take a genius to gather that this enormous defeat is an outcome of a chain of events that started with a single orchestrated attack that took place in September 2001. To those who fail to remember, the 19 terrorists who devastated the world on 9/11 didn’t carry a nuclear bomb, they weren’t equipped with some advanced weaponry. All they carried were box cutters. As bizarre as it may sound, all it took to bring the American empire down was 19 highly motivated people armed with box cutters.

Unfortunately, America and Britain, on their way down, have managed to get themselves involved in some war crimes of colossal magnitude. Two million Iraqis and Afghans are dead. Many more millions are gravely wounded, millions of others are refugees. Each of these victims is a direct outcome of an illegal war launched by the Anglo American democracies.

In spite of the carnage, these Anglo American colonial wars are far from being over. For weeks we are reading about American airplanes dropping bombs on Pakistani villagers. We learn about the so-called allies targeting ‘alleged terrorist suspects’ in rural Pakistan. Evidently our elected democratic leaders see innocent Muslim civilians and villagers as disposable soft targets. Hence, it shouldn’t really take us by surprise that some people out there in the East see us as equally, subject to terror. They see us as potential soft targets. Yet, while British and American crimes are committed in our behalf, in the name of democracy, by leaders we ourselves put in power, the crimes that were committed yesterday in Mumbai were committed by an unknown body and not an elected one. The crimes in Mumbai were committed solely in the name of those who commit them. The Anglo American crimes in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Syria are committed by elected governments on behalf of the British and the American people.

Terrorism is a message written on the wall, but for some reason most Westerners fail to read it. Our enthusiasm to bring Coca-Cola to the Muslim world must be curbed immediately. We should keep our liberal democratic fantasy to ourselves, especially now when it had been proven as a faulty concept. Our insistence upon making Arabs and Muslims as stupid as us is not going to work. We must let people live their lives according to their beliefs and cultural heritage.

The British foreign minister Miliband, along with other politicians, announced yesterday that the attack in Mumbai is an attack against Western democracy. I think we had better face it: as long as the Western democracies treat Muslims as soft targets, the Western people may be as well subject to retaliation and terror.

I would suggest Miliband and his colleagues immediately stop trying to democratise the world. Doing so would simply make this world a far safer place and by far nicer place to live.

Gilad Atzmon, now living in London, was born in Israel and served in the Israeli military. He is the author of The Wandering Who and one of the most accomplished jazz saxophonists in Europe. He can be reached at: atz@onetel.net.uk. Read other articles by Gilad, or visit Gilad's website.

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  1. bozh said on November 29th, 2008 at 12:41pm #

    but better yet wld be for US to stop its own democratization process. i had enough of that.
    the more US (or, rather, its ruling class) denocratizes US, the less democratic it becomes.
    it`s like the cattle: `scientists`, in an effort to make better cattle, make worse catle.
    that goes for chicken, democrats, women.
    US in an attempt to make better democrats, winds up making more fascists.
    while attempting to make women slimmer or look like the `stars` , the fatter they get.
    oops, that`s also valid for me and other men.
    i`m also becoming more communist, anarchist, and fascist. thnx

  2. Danny Ray said on November 29th, 2008 at 3:29pm #

    So your solution is for the United States and Europe to simply stand aside and let the rest of the world fall back into the tenth century? Into a state of howling barbarism And after that, how long will we have to wait before we are told that we must have Shira law and the rest of the Muslim crap that is De Rigor for the Caliphate?

  3. bozh said on November 29th, 2008 at 4:23pm #

    i assert that the way out of so many quagmires, such as islam, christianity, judaism, plutocratic rule, imperialism (theft of land) is education.
    sadly, only education can end clero-plutocratic tyrrany. it is not gonna be, i believe, individual, or group terror.
    only nat’l terror will be ‘succeful’ in subduing ethnic groups and small/ weak nations.
    actually at this time, individual terror will be willfully provoked precisely beacuse of its vaue to an empire like US. thnx

  4. Shabnam said on November 29th, 2008 at 4:32pm #

    Mr. Atzmon: I agree with you when you write: “immediately stop trying to democratise the world. This is an old trick to expand its empire.
    As Fidel Castro writes: “the terrorist group “was born from the empire’s own entrails” and he warns us :[Al-Qaeda] is a typical example of an enemy that the hegemonic power dangles in a place of its choosing where it needs to justify its actions, as it has done throughout its history, fabricating enemies and attacks destined to strengthen its plans of domination.” Thus, these act of terrors are no one except those who engineered 9/11 to make excuse for the phony ‘war on terror’ so they can go places where they want its resources, land and markets. Why Muslim should go and kill people around? Because they are against ‘democracy?’ Muslims are not as STUPID as you are to believe these rubbish to be mislead about its own enemies. Muslims if they were able to create such a terror, why not to use to force out its real enemies in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sudan where the imperialists and zionist are killing them everyday in large number? Look around yourself and see where is the TERROR? The killging of population on a daily basis is not happening in the US, Israel, Canda, Australia, England rather is in occupied Islamic countries like Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sudan, Somalia, Algeria, Lebanon and places where are under the control of US, Israel, Britain and Canada. Whoever believes Israel and US propaganda machine reasoning for these crimes against humanity must see a DOCTOR. Majority of ‘Islamic organization’!! are engineered by US and the west to be used against fabricated enemies including Taliban and Al Qaeda. A fascist organization such as Hindutva is the most dangerous threat to the Indian subcontinent, even more dangerous than the Taliban movement in Afghanistan. It is not a religious movement but a political usurpation of the last vestiges of the independent Indian state, which the BJP would like to see converted into a ‘security’ state in which Muslims, Dalits, Christians, secularists, human rights activists, women, tribal communities, will be relegated to a new lower caste status, while a Brahmin minority in allegiance with other members of the upper castes will manage the state on behalf of American global imperialism. To this end, they will seek to use the services of Zionism, and further push India into the abyss of global war and the destruction of the entire subcontinent. This act of terrors is no the work of Muslims rather is work of Zionfascist-US imperialist – Hinudu fascists to frame Muslim community. In order to avert this catastrophe, the peoples of the subcontinent, Indians, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis, Sri Lankans, and Nepalis as well as all progressive forces among the peoples of Afghanistan, Iran, China, Palestine, and the Arab world and South East Asia must use every means necessary to challenge and defeat these pro-imperialist usurpers and thugs. Struggles all over India are erupting among diverse sections of society. Down with the real axis of evil US – Israel – Britain.
    http://www.geocities.com/virodhi2001/IndiaResistance2001.htm

  5. bozh said on November 29th, 2008 at 5:02pm #

    dannyray,
    children in US, europe r not being killed. their jets r not flying over US and dropping bombs/shooting missiles
    not single iraqi or afghani has to date hurt/maimed/killed a single amer, briton or canadian.
    yet these have slaughtered at least a mn people and dispersed another 8mn.
    am i wrong that u may be one of the 50mn rabid amers and is just a disturbance on dv?

  6. Danny Ray said on November 29th, 2008 at 5:31pm #

    Bozh, I thought it was 100 million rabid American and yes I am one.

    If I am causing a disturbance, it is a small one at best.

    The point I would like to understand is that
    One person living as a serf is one too many.
    One woman without rights is too many.
    One child without health care is too many.

    The left in the USA voted for a nobody because he said he would guarantee reproductive right to all women. Let us face it if women in Alabama were treated as women are in many arab countries there would be a crusade.

    Contrary to popular thought, the people of America would never stand for a Theocracy. Nevertheless, blindly say that central Asia can do what it wants.

  7. Stefanie Levi said on November 29th, 2008 at 6:01pm #

    Salaam/Shalom from Minneapolis, Mn, (usa)!

    Thank you, Gilad, for your words. As a u.s.-born Jew of mixed descent: (Syrian and Ukranian)– who dreams and works for justice and human rights for all, reading this article helps me feel less isolated. I am also the mother of two activist daughters who are trying to help create a world without borders, each in her own way. There is so much work and education and rebuilding to be done here on Turtle Island as part of Tikkun Olam for Our Mother Earth, sometimes it feels overwhelming. Always the struggle between trusting in goodness and rightness–(Leftness!)–of our human family and being wary and aware of and resisting those who abuse power and lie and destroy.

    It’s important to be conscious of the fact that not in the u. s., Britain, Israel , India, Australia and many other nation states are the ones “elected” to power working on behalf of the people. Their role and motives are to uphold the interests of the corporate/religious elite of the nation state in which they hold office, and also to maintain a sycophantic elite global ruling class. This is nothing new, since nation states came into existence; it is more condensed, entrenched and made more efficient with the application of electronic technologies: mass media, private/corporate communications, financial transactions, surveillance and warfare. The abuse of power, whether through classism, racism, ethnocentrism, colonialism, imperialism, heterosexim, sexism, ablism, ageism–and that pernicious cancer, capitalism–must be stopped. It seems impossible, but we must not give up the fight.

    Even coming through the hard slog of the last fifty years, I feel hopeful and still ready to fight the power abusers and work with others to create a healthy world. And this is depite neo-liberalist and right wing agendas, and has nothing to do with who’s in the white house or parliaments or the various addresses at which prime ministers live. I envision our planet thriving without reliance on petro-chemical or nuclear materials for weapons or energy and without the use of any kind of monetary system. People must work and play and build together at the very local level to share and sustain their communities. Religion, language, culture, ethnicity must be recognised and honored to create diverse harmony. We must heal oureslves through healing Our Mother. When She is sick, so are we. My vision is not unique or innovative; is is a vision I think needs to be shared and something like it must be realized soon.
    In case you haven’t heard of these valuable education resources, I recommend William Blum’s book, “Killing Hope”, anything written by Winona La Duke or Vandana Shiva, the CD entitled “DNA” by John Trudell–(actually, anything by or about John Trudell!)–and Mumia Abu Jamal’s writings. So, keep thinking and writing and laugh and dance and sing. The revolution is now if we make it!

    Love and Solidarity!

    Stefanie

  8. Shabnam said on November 29th, 2008 at 7:51pm #

    As Fidel Castro writes: “the terrorist group “was born from the empire’s own entrails” and he warns us :[Al-Qaeda] is a typical example of an enemy that the hegemonic power dangles in a place of its choosing where it needs to justify its actions, as it has done throughout its history, fabricating enemies and attacks destined to strengthen its plans of domination.” Why do Muslims should kill people? If they had the WMD they should have protect their family not to go and kill the terrorists. Therefore, most likely, acts of terror are carried out by the empire and its enablerswere to frame its victims. Where is the terror and mass murdering of people? Those areas where are under control or influence of the zionists and imperialists camp and their puppets such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Sudan. The killging of the population on a daily basis is not happening in the US, Israel, Canda, Australia, England rather is in occupied Islamic countries like Iraq, Afghanistan, Palestine, Pakistan, Sudan, Somalia, Algeria, Lebanon and other areas. Majority of ‘Islamic organization’ have been supported by the US to execute certain goal likeTaliban and Al Qaeda. Now imperialists and zionist are very active in India to frame Muslim and change the anti colonial, including anti zionist attitute into pro empire and zionism. A fascist organization such as Hindutva is the most dangerous threat to the Indian subcontinent, even more dangerous than the Taliban movement in Afghanistan. It is not a religious movement but a political usurpation of the last vestiges of the independent Indian state, which the BJP would like to see converted into a ‘security’ state in which Muslims, Dalits, Christians, secularists, human rights activists, women, tribal communities, will be relegated to a new lower caste status, while a Brahmin minority in allegiance with other members of the upper castes will manage the state on behalf of American global imperialism. To this end, they will seek to use the services of Zionism, and further push India into the abyss of global war and the destruction of the entire subcontinent. This act of terrors is not the work of Muslims rather is work of Zionfascist-US imperialist – Hinudu fascists to frame Muslim community. In order to avert this disaster, the peoples of the subcontinent, as well as all progressive forces among the peoples of Afghanistan, Iran, China, Palestine, and the Arab world and South East Asia must use every means necessary to challenge and defeat these pro-imperialist usurpers and thugs. http://www.geocities.com/virodhi2001/IndiaResistance2001.htm

  9. Shabnam said on November 29th, 2008 at 7:58pm #

    Should be:
    Why Should Muslims kill people? If they had the WMD they should protect their family not to go and kill the tourists. Therefore, most likely, acts of terror are carried out by the empire and its enablers to frame its victims.

  10. rich said on November 29th, 2008 at 10:09pm #

    danny ray,if you are for real ,you’re a complete blithering idiot.why post your b.s. on a site like this.there’s lotsa rightwing blogs where you would fit in.

  11. rich said on November 29th, 2008 at 10:17pm #

    stefanie,your comment was beautiful.almost poetic the way you pulled all those threads together in a couple of paragraphs.carry on.

  12. Chris Schultz said on November 29th, 2008 at 10:56pm #

    Let’s be careful here. We still don’t know who sent these men to terrorize Mumbai. It looks like an Al-Quaida-inspired operation, but no one has taken credit yet. After Timothy McVeigh set off his blast in the American heartland, the FBI spent several days looking for Arab terrorists. Pakistan is a country on the edge of chaos, and anyone seeking to attack an Indian city could, with enough money, use that country as a launching pad. As for trying to democratize the world, I agree. The U.S. and Britain should not attempt to foist our political systems on others. ( I wonder how long American “democracy” will last in Iraq once the U.S. troops leave.) Besides, we have a long way to go to perfect our Constitutional Republic right here.

  13. day53 said on November 30th, 2008 at 4:01am #

    Wow, what a lot of anti-US hate-filled rhetoric! Just boggles the mind. I wouldn’t trade it for any other place in the world. Your hate for our wonderful United States of America is laughable – (using lower case U.S., imperialist country, my goodness!) UNITED STATES OF AMERICA – it’s the beautiful American PEOPLE that is the backbone of our GREAT country, not just the occasional politician or corporation who screw up – THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA will always right itself at the end. GOD BLESS our beautiful country.

  14. desoto said on November 30th, 2008 at 5:31am #

    Danny Ray, You sure have a lot of work to do. You stated that “One child without health care is too many”. You are aware that 45 million Americans are without health insurance, many of them children. That the infant mortality rate in the US ranks 36 out of about 198 countries, higher then Cuba. That the child poverty rate in the US is 21%, this is about 50% higher then any other developed nation, many western countries in number in in the single digits.
    The first thing you need to do Danny Boy, is to get u some education, and lots of it.

  15. Danny Ray said on November 30th, 2008 at 7:03am #

    Desoto, I think I said HEALTH CARE , Anyone in this country can go to any hospital and recive free or low cost care. Thats the law. Try to do that in any arab country.

  16. Tim said on November 30th, 2008 at 7:49am #

    I find it amazing that these heathens have done what they have and we haven’t “aggressively”. By this, I mean, we should go after their families at home and put them behind bars or kill them. Then these “religious fools seeking 72 virgins” will figure out it’s time to stop murdering innocent people. Let me tell you. If this is how we treated them, their families would put a stop to them if they foundout that they were with these terrorist organizations. The families would be more then happy to “rat out” these scum.

  17. Brian said on November 30th, 2008 at 8:08am #

    Yes, let the peaceful radical Muslims live as they wish, spraying acid in the faces of young girls who want an education in Afghanistan or stoning 13-year-old girls in public stadiums in Somalia because they were raped. Let’s just sit back and let things like this go on pretending that the world would be at peace if it weren’t for the U.S. Such ignorance as is displayed on here is appalling. Places like Somalia, Darfur and the Congo are not run by “puppet governments,” yet these countries are home to unspeakable atrocities. The members of this forum seem overwhelmingly willing to let these atrocities go on, ignoring the millions of innocent lives being wiped out by these monsterous governments.

  18. Shelia said on November 30th, 2008 at 8:36am #

    Bohz, I suggest you that you aquire some of the education you were speaking of. Stephanie, will not happen. Not in our lifetime anyway. Each and everyone of you liberal/fascist/anti-America are same ones who have their hands out for HELP. You will have to kill 50 million of us to achieve your goals. Do not under estimate Americans like Japan did in WWII, actually yes do that, we will prevail, we will not stand down. Until we draw a hard line, and we will, and go on a murderous rampage you speak of we will not defeat extremist. Do not worry, do not fear, is just a matter of time. They have not ignited our fire yet. We are still trying to be good, and helpful. Soon, very soon America will rise and wipe them out. America is nowhere defeated, don’t under estimate us as others have done . When chips are down, when issues, crisis, threats increase we are at our best. There is something in each of us that will not falter. Probably even in the ones who sprew hate against their own. Shame on you for spreading fear, lies, propaganda. I pray that you will never experience the World you crave. In your naivety you would curse us all to that world. I get it Shabnam, it never happened, it’s all a ruse. lol Was rigged, just so we AMERICANS can have our way w/the weak? lol Push our weight around? Spread democracy? Had nothing to do w/Sadam killing his own? Nothing to do w/his grandstanding, much like Iran is now? Has nothing to do with the unprovoked attacks on us. Has nothing to do with a Jihad that wants to convert all people, to spread Islam to entire world? Force it? Crame it down our throats? Has nothing to to with nations, Iran, Palestine who want to wipe out Jewish people. If we do not/did not stand up, that is the world you want. I pray it never happens, and as long as there are 50 million out there, it will not happen. I will not be pushed, converted, will would rather die. Those w/weak hearts, weak constitution will/are the very same ones who will quack in fear and stand behind us for protection when they knock on your door. I pray you will not get your way. I pray that your hate, naivety, misguided, misinformed, uneducated opinions do not have their way. But then again, you just may need that lesson. God, may just give it to you. Either way I hope that I see that day. Whether in victory or in defeat I see your faces,when your ideas come back and haunt you,when your on your knees w/gun to your head. I just want to see the light bulb go off in your mind. Your enlightenment, your understanding what you have perpatrated. I am aching for that day.

  19. Ron said on November 30th, 2008 at 8:51am #

    Stefanie:

    If you find so much wrong with the USA, why are you here? No, the US has not lost. We haven’t even begun to fight. What you see and read on American TV/Press is not the majority thinking in the Country. The only solution to this problem is that used during WWII; that being Total War. The Extremisit Islamic World is no different than the Nazi System. It needs to be extinguished in the same manner.

  20. bozh said on November 30th, 2008 at 8:58am #

    an apple fruit ripens in ab 4mos. but no ‘democracy’ has ripened yet even tho greeks have started it for greeks (not slaves) 3K ago.
    US’ ‘democracy’ may not be first to mature. the likeliest ‘democracy’ to ripen first may be a norwegian, fin, swiss, swedish.
    words under single quotes denote their false or misleading symbolic values.

    last time i checked my brain, no worker was even a secretary let alone a prez. now, why is that so? perhaps, devil wants it that way.

    can an actress, wearing a $2K gown be alos sisterly to a woman wearing $2o pants? and yet, she pays $10 to watch the same snob. why is that so?

    bozh, why r u so stupid, says my wife (she’s a yr wiser than me).
    well, i tell her, it’s wonders of nature!

    my wife asks, Isn’t washington in seattle? yes, around that area, i told her. what’s zionism, sez she. i said, beats me!

    u’r an also run, sez the medium.

  21. SassyFrassy said on November 30th, 2008 at 10:21am #

    Does anyone realize that Socialized healthcare has no plus side. it only grants the medical community the right to not care if someone dies while waiting for treatment.

    How many people rememba? when the Socialized healthcare scenario was attempted by Clinton? how many people forgot that it was in the news that when Clinton had to go for his by-pass surgery the nurses said to clinton quote “good thing this country didn’t vote for your socialized healthcare because you would have had to “wait’ in line for treatment.”

    It’ s important to remember there are no pluses to any “ism” in life.

    Some great scholar or publisher once said quote Those whom don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it?
    Go see for yourselves what we saw at the FREEDOM ALLIANCE website and Coalition to fight against the ACLU and how bravely these groups work to protect WE THE PEOPLE.

  22. Don Hawkins said on November 30th, 2008 at 10:30am #

    Bozh I know the feeling. Just this morning my wife asked me what I was reading and I said a comment by Ramsefall. She then said Oh wasn’t he the head of security until he got fired and I said yes.

  23. Stefanie Levi said on November 30th, 2008 at 10:32am #

    Yo, My Sisters and Brothers!
    This cyber-dialogue is already better-worded than much–but, fortunately not all–of some of the cyber-, telephone and face-to-face dialogue I engage in here on Turtle Island. It is so important to share our resources, which includes all our “internal processes”–political, artistic, spiritual, emotional journeys–(really, they are all part of one, but, in western culture, we tend to divvy them up in taxonomic ways, which creates alienation, power-over abusers and perpetuates the commoditization of human rights! BUT, DON’T GET ME STARTED ON THAT THREAD!!)–in the struggle to gain more understanding of one another and to one day achieve some kind of dissonant harmony.

    Okay, the evils are capitalism, imperialism , colonialism,Zionism and all that other shit we’ve been naming. I include states and nations, nation-states in that list. Without empires or nation-states, would we even have hegemony?

    Of course I love/ hate the u. s.–any thinking person has those feelings about where they live, no matter which country. I love the people and the land here–as I have loved on other continents; u. s. is where I was born– it is government I hate and all those evils that come with it. I am a deep-ecology founded anarchist at heart–(as, I believe, are my daughters, ‘though I didn’t “make” them that way; it’s just the real, authentic way of being and survival that’s turned them out that way)– but, being a practical soul, I think IF we have to have government, then it must be communist/socialist and truly support Our Mother and hence us along with her. We are of her. And, like all other organisms, we blunder along in our efforts to stay alive. Problems arise for us as humans when equity is dispensed with. And, since power-mongers seem ever inclined to enslave, rape , commit terrorism, lie, cheat, poison, steal and engage in warfare, and because they perpetuate their class and their systems, we often appear stuck in an evil, sinking morass, and give in to hand-wringing, despair, hopelessness, suicide. All those evils we have named are the by-products of the power-mongers and they can all be undone–very likely not overnight!–since they are only houses made of cards, ‘though cleverly constructed. And, we must be aware that any of us can become a power-monger, if we give in to those propensities. Education and dialogue in open fora are vital to creating communities and societies based on equity.

    I have lived and traveled out of the u.s. I chose to come back here at a miserable point in history: the first bush was still in office at end of 1989: the air and sky and land and water were thick with toxins, and are thicker still thanks to corporate teat-sucking republocrats. Frankly, I’m “scared” to leave, because I know Turtle Island needs people with the ethics my daughters and I embody. I don’t mean that in an egocentric way; there are plenty others out there with more knowledge, drive and energy than any of us has, but everyone participating in the work/play of revolution is a moral imperative.

    On that note, I meant to include Fidel Castro’s autobiography, “My Life”, in the recommended read list, but as I have only let myself read a few paragraphs of this beautiful book, because I have so much else to finish reading first, I hesitated to add it. Also, it is my wonderful friend “Cuba Joan” here in the twin cities who told me about William Blum. My older daughter and I would
    love to live and work in Cuba, but Cuba probably doesn’t need or want us and their immigration policies are pretty tight. Fidel and his revolutionary government have understood that basic human needs must be met in order to sustain the revolution; as a direct result of most of the policies and programs realized there, the Cuban people and their island country have weathered the collapse of the ussr, the “Special Period” which followed, ongoing assaults by the u. s., whether through warfare, infiltration, trade and tourism embargoes, and major hurricanes. Cuba has the highest literacy rates, lowest infant mortality rates any where in Latin America, plus free education, housing and healthcare. Cuba does better than the u. s. in providing for its citizens and in terms of accountability than the u. s. Desoto, gracias por incluyendo Cuba en su communicacion.

    For almost ten years I have been an activist for government-funded universal single payer health care in the u. s., so I have learned much but not all about the health care realities in many countries. Australia has this form of health care; I lived there for 4 years. It is a fantastic system that could be expanded to include dentistry, wholistic/”alternative” medicine and practices and eyeglasses, without much effort. The funding for it comes out of the tax base that individuals and businesses pay. What has been hurting the Australian and, now, the Canadian, British, and some European countries’ excellent and well-conceived health care systems is the global capitalist imperative
    to commoditize human rights–particularly health care–and the push for private insurance companies, health care “management” companies pharmaceutical companies and the medical technology industry to infiltrate public systems to create huge profit margins for the corporate/academic elite. Propaganda and other evils abound in this domain; unfortunately, most trade, professional and service workers unions have sold us down the river to corporate intersts on the health care issue. It is unbelievable how much negative impact these entities have wrought here in the state of minnesota, which, supposedly has the best per capita outcomes for health care anywhere in the u.s.–(for “white”, english-speaking folks thatis; and, of course, the ratively higher percapita income/educational levels we still hangonto in mn , help skew the data. I won’t go into health care access and out come disparities for economically poor, middle to lower middle class people, women, children, people “of color”, college students. Not to mention people who “have” “health” insurance through their jobs and can’t afford to see a doctor or buy treatments or medicines. The u. s. health care de facto policy : “Don’t get sick!” Please read Kip Sullivan’s book which is entitled something like The U. S. Healthcare Mess: ?????” Kip is a strong government-funded single payer universal health care advocate and policy-wonk who lives in the twin cities.

    I did not mean to send another long missive, but my hands were guided by my activist muse. Rich, thank you for your sweet words on the poetic flow of what I sent before. Funny, these days I feel the most unpoetic and the most didactic I’ve ever been. Winter in mn must be setting in and global capitalism is in the process of crumbling onto its ugly ass and some most of my “progressive’ and “right-wing’ and “liberal” and “neo-liberal sisters and brothers are so uncomfrotable with that and in so much in need of education, it worries me!! Poetry is my forte; I need to do more of it!

    Shabnam, shukra! You are speaking the truth that many already perceive but are afraid to speak. I actually held myself back from mentioning definite u. a. and other imperial/zionist powers’ involvements in setting up all of these so-called terrorist attacks. I wasn’t afraid to write about it; I wasn’t sure how welcome that knowledge would be in this forum. You modeled courage and forthrightness for me, thanks again. Sometimes, I don’t want alienate people with my observations, thoughts, knowledge, passion. I’m not afraid to tell it like it is; just wary, on occasion. I am glad my maternal grandparents taught me to love all people and respect folks who seem “different’ from how I was raised, and my mom taught me the same and to have courage and still love right-wing haters. And, Alice Walker taught me that sometimes you have to know what you hate in order to love, fully.

    Danny Ray and day53 collectively, this country–i. e.–the u. s.–is responsible for most of the problems on Our Mother since brits and euros got here and began their genocidal, slavery and corporations and the “christian god” plutotheocratic oligarchic setup that is a cancer everaywhere. Of course, this disease came out of europe and the spirit of colonialism, feudalism and empire; it did not spring up out of nowhere. The so-called “founding fathers” were mostly slave owners and all were power-mongering elitists who had no conception of human rights; hence, de facto terra nullius perpetrated against all indigenous peoples, enslavement of African tribal people, women and children as servants or chattel with no rights, and always the land is raped. This had happened in europe and the near and far east and and in africa as feudalism, imperialism, colonialism took their powerful holds on tribal people over thousands of years. The u.s. was founded on ideologies that could not escape from the horrific historical legacy that preceded them, whether one wants to believe they were in reaction against that legacy or not. Hitler is a perfect example of a leader just pushing the envelope of similar material to what the u. s. was founded on. And I say that as a world citizen born in the u. s. of jewish parents. I spent many hours as a radical left-wing student and then ex-patriate in greece, turkey, england and australia explaining to some folks that there is a difference between the u. s. government which is not at all representative and the people who live and do or don’t vote here. I can speak on behalf of only what I believe is just and good, and that has NEVER been capitalism, racism, sexism, ethnocentrism, imperialism, et al. Cuba will be fine if the u. s. and our current allies do not fuck that island county up as we have the rest of the planet. I have huge concerns about this administration’s machinations over the Caribbean, Mexico and Central and South Americas, not tomention all the rest of the world. Stop bashing Muslims and the “Arab countries” which you obviously know nothing about. I trust you two will open your hearts and minds to what is really going on. Read Fidel’s book and Mumia’s and LaDuke’s and Trudell’s and Blum’s works to get a different education than what I assume you’ve experienced. (The u.s.corporate controlled public and private education system is more than lacking!) I don’t ask you to hate “your country”; I hope you will overcome your deepest fears and self-hatred and work with us to create the revolution.

    Gilad, thanks for opening up discussion…..and now I have to start reading your books and listening to more of your music!

    Shalom/Salaam/Solidarity!

    Stefanie Levi

  24. SassyFrassy said on November 30th, 2008 at 11:28am #

    has Society gotten so warped that 2 simple truthbased articles which are pro American as SassyFrassy has written are still awaiting moderation while people whom spew this kind of hatred for all things free and all things American gets their comments published right away?
    so, far prior to election lots of sites wouldn’t print our turth-based reporter based blogs because they were NOT pro obama.
    So, we filed complaints thru the REPUBLICANS. The problem still persists so now we had to file complaints thru the JUSTICE dept.

    to date the problem still persists. See how the Freedom Alliance and the site the coalition to fight against the ACLU works to protect WE THE PEOPLE.

  25. Deadbeat said on November 30th, 2008 at 1:49pm #

    Shabnam says…

    To this end, they will seek to use the services of Zionism, and further push India into the abyss of global war and the destruction of the entire subcontinent. This act of terrors is not the work of Muslims rather is work of Zionfascist-US imperialist – Hinudu fascists to frame Muslim community.

    Which is why Zionism needs to be unambiguously confronted in the United States.

  26. Shabnam said on November 30th, 2008 at 3:03pm #

    Deadbeat
    I agree with you. Unfortunately, Iranian opposition groups present Islamic liberation movement such as Hamas, Hezbollah as the world threat and cooperate with zionist racists who have taken many capitsls around the world.

  27. Max Shields said on November 30th, 2008 at 3:20pm #

    And Deadbeat what are you doing to confront Zionism in the US? Just curious.

    A call to action should have the strength of its convictions. Otherwise its just some many fingers tip tapping.

  28. dbd said on November 30th, 2008 at 3:24pm #

    This starts with the original mindset from the intolerance of the three branches of the mid-east religion. Once you state that I am the only way, you have deemed yourself as superior to others. Don’t tell me that Isreali do not feel superior to the the Arabs, and the Arabs to the rest of the world.

    Having said that, America has done wonders to the the rest of the world. They could have done what Shaka Zulu, Ottomans, Chenghis khan and the French did to their subjugants. Having an Isreali teach us about democracy, is like a dodo bird trying to teach us to fly

  29. Deadbeat said on November 30th, 2008 at 5:36pm #

    And Deadbeat what are you doing to confront Zionism in the US? Just curious.

    I’ve been doing that for the past year here on DV. Do a search on “Deadbeat” and you’ll see me confronting and challenging members of the Left that has used their oratory to obscure Zionism as a major issue in the U.S.

    What is important to understand is that I advocate that the Left increase their solidarity with communities of color primarily because they have NO affinity towards Zionism once it can be shown that Zionism is actually a RACIST ideology. Right now the framing of Zionism has been to obscure it as a part of “imperialism” which most people cannot understand in order obscure this ideology. The Left has been very guilty of this.

    African Americans and Latinos who bears the brunt of White Supremacy are natural allies of anti-Zionists. Recall that Obama had to REALLY distance himself from Rev. Wright when he called out Zionism in his defense of Louis Farrakhan. Farrakhan who is very respected in the black community has called out Zionism for the past 25 years. Ironically however many on the Left has nothing but ill to say of the minister.

    Therefore Max if you truly want to really confront Zionism the best place to start is by building affinity with people of color. The Workers World Party and International ANSWER has long had affinity with Blacks and Latinos. Same is true about Solidarity.

    However what I am seeing is that there are many on the Left who believe that they can build a movement in the United States WITHOUT affinity with African Americans. A small but clear example of this was the “circle the wagon” mentality around Nader for his “Uncle Tom” remark. This is why I referred you yesterday to Larry Holmes of the Workers World Party. He says it himself (paraphrasing) …

    “If the Left attacks Obama in a why that antagonize the Black masses it will set back the movement by months IF NOT YEARS”.

    If you truly want to confront the “empire” you have to ingratiate yourself with the masses ON THEIR TERMS. You build trust and solidarity when you engage with them on their issues. As you engage them then you can “educate” the masses on the bigger issues (if that “empire” so be it) and enlarge the movement.

    However what I saw during the election season (and to some extent still see in its wake) is a DISDAIN towards the masses because of their support for Obama. Many on the Left misread the polls, misread the conscientiousness of the masses, but most importantly misread themselves and their inherent weaknesses. This especially included Glen Ford, the African American editor of Black Agenda Report. All of a sudden he totally forgot the national and historic struggle of political inclusion of African Americans. Obama may not have been HIS ideal candidate but just showing up as an African American made his run historic and a blow against racism. By forgetting the national question, Glen Ford dismissed NUANCE. By dismissing NUANCE Glen Ford discredited himself and opened the door for other Leftist like Nader to also forget NUANCE.

    (Cynthia McKinney on the other hand remembered NUANCE but as an African American woman it is clear that she get it!)

    Obama however creates a TREMENDOUS RISK for the Left. Just like you Max recently wrote about the 1960’s. Your dismissive tone towards the 1960’s was based on tactics of the 1960’s is being misapplied in 2008. Well guess what Max, that tone and stance of yours while it may have been acceptable towards an Al Gore or John Kerry is now be misapplied when used in the same way on Barack Obama. Obama just by being an African American TRIANGULATES the Left. And if the Left is not careful here will only alienate the Black working class.

    For example Brian Koontz fell into the same trap several weeks ago when he wrote about why must the Left appease Black “vanity” in regards to Obama.

    Another way that Obama “triangulates” is the anger among the Muslim community towards Blacks and Latinos for voting so overwhelmingly for a Zionist puppet. I presume that many Muslim frown upon the “triviality” of an African American President as their people are bombed daily and Zionists extend their hegemony.

    So I am doing my part Max. I have spent considerable time here on DV offering a perspective that you won’t find on many Left-wing lists or blogs. In fact years ago I got kicked off of Hank Roth’s P-NEWS list for just broaching the issue of Zionism. U.S. Zionism is a touchy and often has been a taboo topic on the Left for years and has done far more to RETARD solidarity with people of color.

    This is also a critical time for the Left because the current economic crisis will antagonize the entire working class. If the Left FAILS to organize the masses like they failed in 2003 to organize the anti-war movement the resulting vacuum will be filled by RACISTS and ZIONISTS that will divert attention away from “empire” and scapegoat Blacks, Latinos, Muslim, Native American, Asian, virtually ALL people of color. It won’t be pretty.

    If you are sincere Max and I have reasons to doubt your sincerity but if you are really sincere then I would advise you to get engage with people of color. Get out of the suburbs (presumably that is where you are) and go into the inner cities or visit a barrio and get off your high horse of “empire” and become familiar with EVERYDAY issues. It all ties into “empire” anyway but most importantly you will learn humility and perhaps even learn to laugh.

    I got my education during my years in NYC when Ed Koch was mayor and I saw how he used racism and neoliberal policies to create the schism between Blacks and Jews. Koch was extremely effective. It altered my conscientiousness. I think such an experience will help alter yours.

  30. Max Shields said on November 30th, 2008 at 6:33pm #

    Thanks for your response, DB.

    Btw, I worked with the BPP on a free health clinic back in the 60s.

  31. Dave Silver said on November 30th, 2008 at 7:26pm #

    A Basic premise; For at least the past40 year the roots of terrorism world wide can be found in the policies and acxtions of US imperialim and its Israeli puppet.

    Dave Silver

  32. Deadbeat said on December 1st, 2008 at 12:12am #

    Max Shields writes…

    Btw, I worked with the BPP on a free health clinic back in the 60s.

    Cool Max. I was too young to have that kind of experience and unfortunately when I was that age I didn’t have the conscientiousness. However despite our contentious dialogue here on DV it is good to know that we can reach a general understanding.

    Thanks,
    Deadbeat.

  33. bozh said on December 1st, 2008 at 6:08am #

    deadbeat,
    as a socialist, or even i be nonsocialist, i wld never condone occupation of iraq and afgh’n.
    obama, most likely will keep killing children in that area. natch, like every murderer, he too will rationalize his own murders. and no causative factors need be posited for the slaughter of afghanis, iraqis, pakistanis, syrians, ossetians, pals, et al.
    no, not single cause or justification for these crimes will be ever proffered.
    because US is a priori right no matter what it does!?
    and 99.99% of blacks/hispanics have just approbated fresh slaughters and destruction.
    because they accept the cult of personality? go, go, deadbeat; educate them.; bring them to their senses.
    as i’m trying now? that just one black person might read and get angry w. me?
    deadbeat, let’s have a reality check? thnx

  34. Max Shields said on December 1st, 2008 at 6:41am #

    Let’s not forget that the alternative is the replacement of empire.

    The BBP was a moment in time. BBP was directional. We don’t see that today, which is why I don’t think the 60s produced real change. Some of what transpired during that time, provides more about what than how to.

    The empire dug in and became more of what it is. The trajectory from Nixon, to Reagan, to Bush I to Clinton to Bush II is seamless; and Obama is clearly on that track. But all this pre-dates Nixon.

    The only reality will be net energy. The empire will not be shamed, it is a bi-partisan war making machine that shares the same doctrine of exceptionalism. The empire has only one soft-spot, “energy”. The empire requires endless economic growth which can only be had through fossil. Alternatives will not supplant this level of demand.

    Those who want fundamental change – transforming the empire to its place as a cooperative world citizen – will need to plan and move toward that world on the ground, locally, where such change is not only conceivable but doable. The empire owns the national and global stage. Head to head with the Empire is doomed. That is the lesson of the 60s.

    Again, the non-negotiable vulnerability of this empire is fossil energy. The Empire doesn’t care where it gets it; but he monster must be fed. Everything the empire has, everything it wants, everything it creates comes from that. Monetary systems are just phony props which can be made to heel and respond to what the empire demands.

    We must assume, as we see it playing out, that Obama is simply more of the same. To waste our time on Obama will detract us from what’s in front of us.

  35. Deadbeat said on December 1st, 2008 at 3:21pm #

    Bozh writes …

    obama, most likely will keep killing children in that area. natch, like every murderer, he too will rationalize his own murders.
    and 99.99% of blacks/hispanics have just approbated fresh slaughters and destruction. because they accept the cult of personality? go, go, deadbeat; educate them.; bring them to their senses. as i’m trying now? that just one black person might read and get angry w. me?
    deadbeat, let’s have a reality check? thnx

    The reality check bozh is that Obama’s very presence triangulates the Left and the Left is extremely responsible for putting itself in this position. Therefore Obama is not a “distraction” you have to ANALYZE Obama and his campaign in order to have a PROPER response. An IMPROPER response will only further the marginalization of the Left.

    Your reaction of anger and frustration to the election is the same as Shabnam who rightfully sees Obama, a Zionist puppet, as the emeny of this people. The overwhelming support that Obama received from Blacks and Latinos from your point of view indicts “brnothers and sisters” for Obama’s administration of the “Empire”. In other words the voters (masses especially the masses of people of color) trivially voted for the “cult of personality” are “thoroughly irresponsible” and will be held to account for Obama’s action. That is one perspective.

    The other perspective that you are ignoring people of color has suffered under the Southern Strategy since 1968. For 40 years there has been a reactionary backlash to the Civil Right movements and all of the movement of the 1960’s. Recall that Black support for Obama didn’t really mount until Hillary Clinton and her minions played the race card on Obama. The McCain/Palin campaign turned out to be a Klan rally with the burning cross. From the perspective of people of color they viewed Obama as a referendum against White Supremacy. And a moment in history linked to the struggle of political inclusion for all minority groups — the national question. Therefore a vote for Obama WAS NOT a vote for triviality or the “cult of personality”.

    As you can see bozh, these perspective has CONTRADICTIONS and analyzing these contradictions means analyzing Obama. To ignore how these perspective relate and contradict and to PIT these contradictions against each other will be a SERIOUS error in judgment and strategy for the Left. As Larry Holmes remarked during the Workers World’s Conference such an error will set back the Left FOR YEARS because it will alienate the Black working class from the Left.

    Obama may be an even worst TRIANGULATOR than Bill Clinton because Obama of the fact that he is Black and because the Left is too weak and fractured to offer an alternative. It is clear from your reaction that Obama’s is well position to pit Muslims against African Americans and without analysis the Left is well position to screw things up rather than provide a cogent strategy to counter Obama.

    Max says…

    The BBP was a moment in time. BBP was directional. We don’t see that today, which is why I don’t think the 60s produced real change. Some of what transpired during that time, provides more about what than how to.

    Max, believe it or not, I respect your position but your view is too grandiose. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t articulate it BUT how does your view become a locus of action? Take a look at what you did with the BPP …

    Btw, I worked with the BPP on a free health clinic back in the 60s.

    That right Max you worked with the BPP on the EVERYDAY issues (free health care) while the BPP also spoke to and confronted “empire”. The BPP goals was to UNIFY and build SOLIDARITY will all oppressed groups around the world — this included their outright anti-Zionist stance and support for the Palestinians. Therefore you know what I speak to about strategy is true.

    What made the BPP so DANGEROUS and why they were put down by COINTELPRO was because they were revolutionary. They were able to educate their cadre on the larger issue and tie the big issues to the everyday because they materially addressed the EVERYDAY issues of the people.

    I respect where both bozh and where Max are coming from but in order for the two of you to achieve your respective goals you’ll have to RESPECT where the masses (especially Blacks and Latinos) are coming from as well. Obama and the Obama campaign is not to be dismissed or underestimated but is ripe for analysis and a cogent response. It will be a mistake to dismiss him.

    These are critical tests for the Left in the coming months and years.

    Thanks,
    Deadbeat.

  36. bozh said on December 1st, 2008 at 5:52pm #

    deadbeat,
    analyzing obama and his campaign is to me promoting cult of the personality.
    obama may indeed think like le roi louis who said, Etat est moi bu t i don’t.
    in add’n, i evaluate all? promises as lies; clero-political especially andw. gusto.
    thats’ why i haven’t spent so little time listening to such liars.
    so, am i to analyze obama’s lies to come up w. proper response. so, u’r (in)advertingly saying that: “US will continue slaying darkies” as an inproper response?
    ok, it actualy is not a response but a conclusion. but a conclusion resting on well known facts.
    i do not personalize events; thus, i conclude that some 50-100 mn rabid amers “triangulates” Left which may comprise ab mn people or less.
    i don’t think uncle sam is concerned ab the Left. how cld he w. 100mn rabid amers and another 100mn meek amers supporting and praising him.
    many, many facts show or even prove that a prez is a mere manager and not the state.
    unfortuantely, a few peoples worship their respective leaders (or ‘stars’) or managers to the degree that amers do; probably ab 200mn consider these ‘stars’ as demigods.
    as to why that is so; what were causative factros for it, we’l discuss some other time.
    but, DB, if u have some input into this u’r welcome and others to enlighten us.
    until amers mull over this and open their eyes even the Right will not be able to persuade them that these people r no better than we r., let alone, what in their eyes, r communists, enemy of america, etc.

  37. Deadbeat said on December 1st, 2008 at 8:48pm #

    bozh writes …

    analyzing obama and his campaign is to me promoting cult of the personality.

    I understand your point bozh and respect it. I think analyzing the Obama campaign help the Left understand how to formulate a response.

    i don’t think uncle sam is concerned ab the Left. how cld he w. 100mn rabid amers and another 100mn meek amers supporting and praising him.

    So long as the Left remains disjointed, incoherent and reactionary rather than have a solid and organized plan to build solidarity and strength, then I have to agree with you bozh, Uncle Sam has absolutely nothing to worry about wrt to the Left.

    peace!

  38. bozh said on December 2nd, 2008 at 6:21am #

    deadbeat, a bit more on “building solidarity” w. people of color.
    by solidarity, u probably mean getting people of color (which includes or shld include the white color) to vote for a second party, which wld oppose wars, etc.,
    how many of these colorful people go to church? church goers r swayed by priests who appear to be overwhelmingly for warfare; against socialism; approbate US/euro/Israel crimes.
    in add’n, as long as ruling class utterly controls/owns media, education, entertainment, we may lose 100% of school children.
    as these children grow, they r bombarded by lies, half truths, cultishness, etc.
    all we can do is to counter educate. but we r barred from schools; we don’t have money to start a newspaper, etc.
    perhaps only a few mns read alternate media; half of which may be rightists.
    more cld be said. thnx

  39. Rachel Golem said on December 9th, 2008 at 2:14pm #

    I am starting a new organization.

    ANGRY, DYSFUNCTIONAL, CHILDLESS WOMEN FOR PEACE!!!!!

    Anyone interested???

    Peace, Rachel Golem