Anatomy of a Conditionally Unresolved Conflict

According to Hegel, attaining “self-consciousness” is a process that necessarily involves the other. How am I to become conscious of myself in general? It is simply through desire or anger, for example. Unlike animals that overcome biological needs by destroying another organic entity, human desire is a desire for recognition.

In Hegelian terms, recognition is accomplished by directing oneself towards non-being, that is, towards another desire, another emptiness, another ‘I’. It is something that can never be fully accomplished. “The man who desires a thing humanly acts not so much to possess the thing as to make another recognise his right. It is only desire of such recognition, it is only the action that flows from such desire, that creates, realizes and reveals a human, non biological I.” (Kojeve A., Introduction to the Reading of Hegel, 1947, Cornell Univ. Press, 1993, p. 40). Following this Hegelian line of thinking, we can deduce that in order to develop self-consciousness, one must face the other. While the biological entity will fight for its biological continuity, a human being fights for recognition.

In order to understand the practical implications of this idea, let us turn to the ‘Master-Slave Dialectic’. The Master is called the Master because he strives to prove his superiority over nature and over the slave who is forced to recognize him as a master.

At first glance, it looks as if the master has reached the peak of human existence but as we shall see, this is not the case. As has just been stated, it is recognition that humans fight for. The master is recognised by the slave as a master but the slave’s recognition has little value. The master wants to be recognised by another man, but a slave is not a man. The master wants recognition by a master, but another master cannot allow another superior human being in his world. “In short, the master never succeeds in realising his end, the end for which he risks his very life.” So the master faces a dead-end. But what about the slave? The slave is in the process of transforming himself since, unlike the master who cannot go any further, the slave has everything to aspire to. The slave is at the vanguard of the transformation of the social conditions in which he lives. The slave is the embodiment of history. He is the essence of progress.

A Lesson in Mastery

Let us now try to apply the Hegelian Master-Slave Dialectic to the notion of Jewish ‘chosenness’ and exclusivity. While the Hegelian ‘Master’ risks his biological existence to become a master, the newborn Jewish infant risks his foreskin. The chosen infant is born into the realm of mastery and excellence without (yet) excelling at anything. The other awards the chosen baby his prestigious status without the requirement of facing any process of recognition. And in fact, the ‘chosen’ title is given to Jews by themselves (allegedly God) rather than by others.

If, for instance, we try to analyse the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through the Hegelian mechanism of recognition, we realise the impossibility of any dialogue between the two parties. While it is more than clear that the Palestinian people are fighting for recognition, which they declare at every possible opportunity, the Israelis avoid the whole recognition issue altogether. They are convinced that they are already fully recognised in the first place. They know who they are — they are born masters who happen to live on their ‘promised land’. Israelis refuse to join the dialectic ‘meaning transformation’ game and instead divert all their intellectual, political and military efforts into demolishing any sense of Palestinian recognition. The battle for Israeli society is to suppress any Palestinian symbol or desire, whether material, spiritual or cultural.

Strangely enough, the Palestinians are managing quite well in their fight for recognition. More and more people out there are now beginning to understand the just nature of the Palestinian cause and the level of inhumanity entangled with the entire concept of Zionism and Jewish politics in general. More and more people out there find the Palestinian people and their spokesmen very easy to empathise with. Even the Hamas who were despised by most Western political institutions are now managing to get their message across. The Israelis, on the other hand, are falling behind in such manoeuvres. The average Western listener finds them almost impossible to sympathise with. While a Palestinian will call you to share his pain and misery, talking straight to your heart, the Israeli spokesman will demand that you to accept his views. He will insist on selling you a ready-made fantastic historical narrative; a repetitive tale that starts somewhere around Biblical Abraham, continues with a series of Holocausts and leads eventually towards more current bloodshed. It seems as if the Israelis, the masters, always present the same faceless story. Can Abraham and the Holocaust justify Israeli inhuman behaviour in Gaza? Not really, and the reason is simple, Abraham and the Holocaust and historical narratives in general do not evoke genuine emotional feelings. And indeed, the Jewish political world is so desperate to maintain its narrative that the last Holocaust has now been transformed into a legal narrative. The message is as follows: “beware, if you doubt my narrative you will end up behind bars.” This is obviously an act of desperation.

Following Hegel, we learn that recognition is a dynamic process; it is a type of understanding that grows in you. While the Palestinians will use all their available, yet limited, resources to make you look at their faces, in their eyes, to carry you into a dynamic process of mutual recognition, the Israelis would expect you to accept their narrative blindly. They would expect you to turn a blind eye to the clear fact that as far as the Middle East is concerned Israel is an aggressor like no other. Israel is an occupying regional super power, a tiny State heavily engaged in exploring different nuclear, biological and chemical arsenals. It is a racially orientated apartheid state that bullies and abuses its minorities on a daily basis. Yes, the Israelis and their supportive Jewish lobbies around the world want you to ignore these facts. They insist upon being the victims, they want you to approve their inhuman policies referring to Jews endless suffering.

How is it that Jewish politics has become aggressive like no other? It is simply the fact that from a Jewish political perspective, there is ‘no other’. The so-called other for them is nothing but a vehicle rather than an equal human subject. Israeli foreign affairs and Jewish political activity should be comprehended in the light of a severe lack of a ‘recognition mechanism’. Israeli and Jewish politics, left right and centre, is grounded on locking and fixing of meaning. They would refuse to regard history as a flux, as a dynamic process, as a journey towards ‘oneself’ or self-realisation. Israel and Israelis view themselves as if they are external to history. They do not progress toward self-realisation because they have a given, fixed identity to maintain. Once they encounter a complex situation with the surrounding world, they would then create a model that adapts the external world into their chauvinist self-loving value system. This is what Neo-conservatism is all about; this is what the fantasmic yet sickening newly emerging Judeo-Christian discourse is all about.

As sad as it may sound, people who are not trained to recognise the other are unable to let them be recognised. The Jewish tribal mindset: left, centre and right, sets Jews aside of humanity. It does not equip the followers of the tribal mindset with the mental mechanism needed to recognise the other. Why should they do it? They have done so well for many years without having to do so. Lacking a notion of an other, indeed transcends one far beyond any recognised form of true humanist thought. It takes one far beyond ethical thinking or moral awareness.

Instead of morality, every debate is reduced into a mere political struggle with some concrete material and practical achievements to aim for.

Hegel may throw some further light on the entire saga. If indeed one becomes aware of oneself via the other, then the ‘Chosen subject’ is self-aware to start with. He is born into mastery. Accordingly, Israelis are not practicing any form of dialogue with the surrounding human environment since they are born masters. In order to be fair to the Israelis, I have to admit that their lack of a recognition mechanism has nothing to do with their anti-Palestinian feelings. As a matter of fact, they cannot even recognise each other — Israel and Israelis have a long history of discrimination against its own people (Jews of non-European descent such as Sephardim Jews are discriminated against by the Jewish elite, those of Western descent). But are progressive Jews any different? Not really. Like the Israelis and similar to any other form of tribal chauvinist ideology, they are continuously withdrawing into self-centred segregated discourse that has very little to engage or grab the interest of anyone besides themselves. Consequently, like the Israelis who surround themselves with walls, the Jewish progressive cells have already set themselves into cyber ghettos that are becoming increasingly hostile to the rest of humanity and those who supposed to be their comrades.

Historic Materialism

If one cannot establish relationships with one’s neighbour based upon recognition of the other, there must be another way of establishing a dialogue. If one cannot form a dialogue based upon empathy with the other and the rights of the other, one must pursue another mode of communication. It seems as if the alternative ‘chosen’ dialogical method reduces any form of communication into a materialistic language. Almost any form of human activity, including love and aesthetic pleasure, can be reduced to a material value. The Chosen political activists are well practised in using this method of communication.

Recently the Israeli ultra-Zionist author A.B. Yehoshua has managed to upset many American Jewish Ethnic leaders at the American Jewish Committee conference by saying: “You [Jews in the Diaspora] are changing jackets . . . you are changing countries like changing jackets.” Indeed, Yehoshua came under a lot of pressure following his remark, he was very quick to regret his statement. However, Yehoshua’s insight, while far from being original, is rather painfully truthful.

It is quite apparent that some politically orientated Diaspora Jews are engaged in an extremely fruitful dialogue with any possible core of hegemony. Yehoshoua’s criticism was fairly spot on. Following Yehoshua, once it is clear that a new country is becoming a leading world super power, it won’t take long before a wave of liberated assimilated Jews would try to infiltrate into its governing elite. “If China ever became the world’s foremost super power,” he warned, “American Jews would migrate there to assimilate rather than in the US.”

A decade ago, at the peak of the legal battle between major Jewish institutions and the Swiss Bank, Norman Finkelstein stood up and said that very little remains of the Jewish Holocaust apart from various industrial forms of financial bargaining for compensation. According to Finkelstein, it was all about profit-making. Without any criticism intended by me about financial compensation, it appears as if some people are quick to translate their pain into gold. (It is important to mention that pain as well as being transformed into gold, can be transformed into other values such as moral or aesthetic ones). However, the possibility of transforming pain and blood into cash stands at the heart of the Israeli false dream – that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, especially the refugee problem, is resolvable. Now we know where this assumption originates. The Israelis, as well as Jewish leading institutions, are fully convinced that if they were happy to come to a financial settlement with the Germans (or the Swiss for the matter), the Palestinians would be equally happy to sell their lands and dignity. How do the Israelis arrive at such a strange conviction? Because they must know better than the Palestinians what the Palestinians really want. How? Because the Israelis are brilliant, they are the Chosen People. Moreover, the chosen subject doesn’t even try to engage with the human in the other. Sixty years after the Nakba, the mass the expulsion of the indigenous Palestinians, the vast majority of Israelis and world Jewry do not even start to acknowledge the Palestinian cause, let alone do they show any form of empathy.

When you talk to Israelis about the conflict, one of their most frequently used arguments is the following: “When we (the Jews) came here (to Palestine), they (the Arabs) had nothing. Now they have electricity, work, cars, health services, etc.” This is obviously a failure to recognise the other. It is typical of the chauvinist colonialist to impose one’s own value system on the other. In other words, the Israelis expect the Palestinians to share the importance they attach to the acquisition of material wealth. “Why should the other share my values? Because I know what is good. Why do I know what is Good? Because I am the best.” This arrogant and completely materialistic approach obviously lies at the heart of the Israeli vision of peace. The Israeli military calls it ‘the stick and the carrot’. Seemingly, when referring to Palestinians they actually have rabbits in their minds. But, as bizarre or even tragic as it may sound, the Israeli born, ultra-left Mazpen movement was not categorically different. They obviously had some revolutionary dreams of secularisation for the Arab world. They obviously knew what was good for the Arabs. Why did they know? Shall I let you guess? Because they were exclusively and chauvinistically clever. They were the Marxists of the chosen type. Hence, I wasn’t overwhelmingly surprised that as time went by, the legendary ‘revolutionary’ Mazpen and the despised neo-conservatism actually united into a single catastrophic message: “We know better what is good for you than you yourselves do.”

Both Zionists and Jewish leftists have a “New Middle East dream”. In Peres’s old fantasy the region turns into a financial paradise in which Israel would stand at the very centre. The Palestinians (as well as other Arab States) would supply Israeli industries (representing the West) with the low cost labour they need. In turn, they, the Arabs, would earn money and spend it buying Israeli (Western) goods. In the Judeo progressive dream the Arabs leaves Islam behind, they become Marxist cosmopolitan progressives (East European Jews) and join the journey towards a world revolution. As much as Peres’s dream is sad, the Judeo Marxist version is almost funny.

As it seems, within the Zionist dream, Israel would establish a dual coexistence in the region where the Palestinian people would be the eternal slaves and the Israelis their masters. Within the Judeo progressive cosmopolitan dream, Red Palestine will establish a dual coexistence in the region where the Palestinian people would be the eternal slaves of a remote Euro-centric ideology. If there is a big categorical difference between the two Judeo centric ideologies, I just fail to see it.

However, according to Hegel, it is the slave that moves history forward. It is the slave that struggles towards his freedom. It is the slave who transforms himself and it is the master who eventually vanishes. Following Hegel, we have good reason to believe that the future of the region belongs to the Palestinians, the Iraqis and nation Islam in general. One way of explaining why Israel ignores this understanding of history relates to the conditional detachment of the exclusive ‘chosen’ state of mind.

Welcome to Cuckoo Land

Dr. Mustafa Barghouti, a Palestinian doctor who lives and works in the occupied West Bank, referred to Israel as “trying to be David and Goliath at the same time” (Dr. Barghouti was speaking at a debate at the House of Commons, 22 Nov. 2000). According to Dr. Barghouti, this is impossible. He also claimed that “Israel is probably the only State that bombs a territory it occupies.” He found this very strange and even bizarre. Is it really strange to be David and Goliath simultaneously? Is it really strange to destroy your own property? Not if you are insane. The lack of mirroring (again, seeing oneself through the other) can lead people, as well as nations, into strange dark corners. The lack of a framework which would allow you to discern your own image through the other, the lack of a corrective mechanism, appears to be a very dangerous state of affairs.

The first generation of Israeli leaders (Ben-Gurion, Eshkol, Meir, Peres, Begin) grew up in the Diaspora, mainly in Eastern Europe. Being a Jew living in a non-Jewish environment forces one to develop a sharpened self-awareness and imposes a certain kind of mirroring. Moreover, early Zionism is slightly more developed than other forms of Jewish tribal politics for the simple reason that Zionism is there to transform the Jews into ‘people like other people’. Such a realisation involves a certain amount of necessary mirroring. However, this was not enough to restrain Israeli aggressive acts (e.g., Deir-Yassin, Nakba, Kafer Kasem, the ‘67 war, etc.) but it was more than enough to teach them a lesson in diplomacy. Since 1996, young leaders who were born there have led Israel into the state of ‘chosenness’ (Rabin, Netanyahu, Sharon, Barak, Olmert). Whilst in their earlier years they were imbued with an intense traditional Jewish anxiety, as they grew up this was overtaken by the legacy of the 1967 ‘miracle’, an event that turned some of the ‘chosen’ ideologies into a messianic extravaganza. This fixation with absolute power exacerbated by Jewish anxiety coupled with ignorance of the ‘other’ leads to epidemic collective schizophrenia, both of mood and action; a severe loss of contact with reality that gives way to the use of excessive force. The recent “Second Lebanon War” was an obvious example for that matter. Israel retaliates with machine guns in response to children throwing stones, with artillery and missiles against civilian targets following a sporadic uprising, and with a total war to a minor border incident. This behaviour should not be explained by using political, materialist or sociological analytical tools. Much greater understanding could be gained by situating the conflict within a philosophical framework, which allows a better understanding of the origins of paranoia and schizophrenia.

The Israeli Prime Minister, representing both ‘David and Goliath’, can talk about the vulnerability of Israel, Jewish pain and Jewish misery in one breath and about launching a massive military offensive against the whole region in the next. Such behaviour can only be explained by seeing it as a form of mental illness. The funny/sad side of it is that most Israelis do not even realise that something is going terribly wrong. Being a born master leads to the absence of a ‘recognition mechanism’. Inevitably it leads toward blindness. This lack of a recognition mechanism results in a split psyche, being both ‘David and Goliath’ at one and the same time. It seems that neither Israel nor Israelis can any longer be partners in any meaningful dialogue.

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.

7 comments on this article so far ...

Comments RSS feed

  1. bozhidar balkas said on May 8th, 2008 at 4:48pm #

    illuminating article by gilad.
    like to add that ashkenazim have always been separatist/rejectionists.
    because of that they may have been persecuted by their respective host nations.
    indeed, when a nation or people accept in their midst a foreign people and newcomers turn against their host, one can expect bitterness and persecution or even expuslsion of the ashkenazim.
    it may be that because of torah misteachings, ashkanazim have been rendered semantically blind.
    thre’s no other explanation for unprecendeted crimes they commit.
    how does one elucidate the fact that their nat’l sport is child-, woman-, and manhunting. no, they are not crazy or mental cases; just blind. thank u

  2. sk said on May 9th, 2008 at 12:10pm #

    FYI, an interesting paper on the history of some of the motivating passions of Zionism.

  3. Michael Pugliese said on May 9th, 2008 at 3:29pm #

    http://www.hurryupharry.org/2008/05/08/jews-and-jew-haters-ii-from-cranks-to-clowns/
    Jews and Jew Haters II: From Cranks to Clowns

    Your View, May 8th 2008, 9:28 am

    (This is a guest post by Mikey)

    Six months ago, I posted Jews and Jew Haters: The Anti-Zionist Jewish Squabble. It was about the nasty feud between Tony Greenstein, an anti-Zionist British Jew, and Gilad Atzmon, an anti-Zionist Israeli. Greenstein wants “the state of Israel to be destroyed” and claims that Hamas and Hizbollah are not antisemitic. Atzmon says that burning down a synagogue is a “rational act.” I wasn’t sure if a sane person could support either side, but I concluded: “this argument is set to run and run.”
    And so it has turned out. The Tony Greenstein camp has established its own blog, Anti-Zionists against Anti-Semitism, to “opppose [sic] that small current around Israel Shamir and Gilad Atzmon who wish to introduce the ideas of racism and anti-Semitism into the Palestine solidarity movement.” A large proportion of the posts are attacks on Atzmon, described as “a holocaust denier” who is “fundamentally racist and reactionary.”
    The blog is very dull and only masochists will enjoy it. Apparently even Greenstein finds it boring, which may explain why he is anxious for the excitement of a court case. He has initiated legal proceedings against Atzmon in respect of:

    False allegations of serious criminal conduct and fraud. concerning alleged offences over 20 years ago, contrary to s.8 of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.
    False allegations of violent crimes, in particular against Jewish people
    False allegations of race hate crimes against Jewish people
    False allegations of vandalising church property

    In full litigation mode, Greenstein has also threatened to sue Google for hosting the website of Atzmon’s main defender.
    In the Nazi mind, the ultimate evil is being a Jew. In Atzmon’s mind, the ultimate evil is being a Zionist. This is worse than being a Nazi:

    there is no room for comparison between Israel and the Nazis. If a comparison is to be made, then it is the Israelis who win the championship of ruthlessness… Israel and Zionism endanger our world… We have to admit that Israel is the ultimate evil rather than Nazi Germany… We should never compare Israel to Nazi Germany. As far as evilness is concerned, we should now let Israel take the lead.

    Since it is the worst insult he can imagine, Atzmon has taken to calling the Greenstein camp crypto-Zionists. Since it is the worst insult he can imagine, Greenstein throws the same accusation against the Atzmon camp, whose ideas “can only lead in one direction – to the strengthening of Zionism.” But Greenstein is more promiscuous with his abuse. Not long after the BNP’s legal adviser attacked the Board of Deputies as “a clique of self serving Zionist racists” and a “Zionist-Nazi organisation” and the Jewish Chronicle as “the mouthpiece of the same clique of Zionist parasites and crooks,” Greenstein wrote that the BNP is “pro-Zionist.” Perhaps he was trying to enliven his blog by making it hard for his readers to keep a straight face.

    It may become a double-act. Both Gilad Atzmon and Tony Greenstein despise Anthony Julius for his criticisms of anti-Zionism. Greenstein recently dismissed Julius as “quite a simple fellow” under a headline that screamed, “Gilad Atzmon Joins with Anthony Julius to Attack Jewish Anti-Zionists.” That was shortly after Atzmon attacked Julius for his role in “the destruction of history revisionist David Irving’s career.”

    Meanwhile the Trotskyist Alliance for Workers’ Liberty has rallied to Greenstein defence. This is in spite of Greenstein’s boast on the very same webpage that he

    would lose no sleep if they [AIPAC], the Bush White House, the leadership of the Republican Party, New Labour’s cabinet and any other warmongers I can think of, were vaporised.

    As Paul Bogdanor commented:

    Previously I exposed Greenstein’s thoughts on vapourising as many as 100,000 American Jews in AIPAC, along with the inhabitants of the White House, as well as his endorsement of the IRA atrocity at the Brighton hotel. Greenstein now extends the list to the leadership of the Republican Party, New Labour’s cabinet “and any other warmongers I can think of.” Thus Greenstein’s “anarchist wishful thinking” encompasses the mass murder of the entire democratically elected leadership of America and Britain, and, apparently, anyone at all who supported the Iraq war. That would presumably include everyone from Iraqi voters who support Coalition forces to those he has elsewhere described as “the racist warmongers of Harry’s Place”!

    Greenstein’s troubles go beyond allegations of serious criminal conduct and the exposure of his “wishful thinking” about terrorism. While coping with the tedium of his own blog, he faces the humiliation of a spoof blog by a supporter of Atzmon. The unidentified blogger has even started posting videos mocking a certain “Mony Gripstein” and his comrade, the irreplaceable Roland Rance.
    Watching the farce of the Jewish anti-Zionists, you may think that the lunatics have taken over the asylum. I prefer to say that the clowns are now running the circus.

  4. sk said on May 9th, 2008 at 6:51pm #

    Let’s not repeat the mistake made by Jon Wiener when he equated the professional slanderer Alan Dershowitz with Norman Finkelstein, going so far as quoting a less than impartial observer who claimed they “deserve[d] each other”.

    Tony Greenstein is a convicted shoplifter and credit-card fraudster, whereas Gilad Atzmon is a world renowned artist who also writes on history and philosophy (though, imho, he might be intoxicated a bit more than is wise with the worldview of slippery thinkers such as Weininger and Hegel). More importantly, he has something worthwhile to say on a five century old debate whose resolution has some far reaching implications for all of us on spaceship Earth. Not only must we resist those who are out to silence his voice, but we also need to avoid the temptation toward lazy moralizing along the lines of “a plague on both your houses” without educating ourselves first on the relevant historic facts.

  5. bozhidar balkas said on May 10th, 2008 at 9:51am #

    zionism is just another ideology. as such it cannot and will not tolerate any other ideology.
    its ideology rests on supremacism; thus can be compared also with nazism.
    basic nazi premise being that germans (0r blue-eyed people) are the noblest/smartest , etc.
    zionism was developed by an euro/asian/semitic people; probably with very little or no semitic blood.
    naturally, zionists would like to drown the fact that ashkenazim are chosen, light onto the world, in sea of words.
    to obtain cannon fodder, the zionists have latched onto judaism.
    it seems most mizrahim and sephardim, being much purer semites , much more pious, and jewish than ashkenazim, were easily persuaded to come to israel.
    it is the darkies that now fight for ashkenazim dream and our nightmare.
    most ashkenazim are at peace in US, Canada; now oppressing us nonzionists in canada and US. thank u.

  6. ashley said on May 10th, 2008 at 2:46pm #

    I find Atzmon one of the most interesting writers around, especially viz. this interminable Jewish issue – whatever it is!

    He lost me a little on this one with the philosophical underpinnings of his subsequent point, however the thrust of it, namely that the Zionist Imperators do not properly perceive ‘other’, is reasonable and born out by policies pursued for many decades now.

    That said, my little pop psychology theory goes something like this: Jewish communities originated from nomadic tribes which developed societal traditions involving dynamics that maintained group identity whilst functioning in other cultures and nations. Historically they only held established fixed-territory nations, such as Judea, for very short periods of time – a couple of centuries only according to some historians – which is why some of the oldest Jewish communities in the world, such as the one in Tehran, exist outside the ‘historical homeland’ – and have done from well before the time of Christ and the recently debunked forced ‘exodus’.

    So the Jewish sense of ‘we the people’ or ‘the Chosen Ones’ as Gilad reference is one born not out of philosophy or theology, but simple societal dynamics which context itself engendered the resultant myths and beliefs which therefore reflect in meaningful, even profound, ways the underlying dynamic of such communities which manage to preserve their own bloodlines and culture even whilst essentially living in other peoples’ lands and cultures.

    I think this is the cultural background of Jewish culture. One result of this has been that they tend to function most often in service-based occupations since, especially in feudal times or traditional cultures which still exist today, they were neither the landowners nor the peasants, both of which are bound to particular terrain within the national hierarchy, be that a monarchy or a constitution. At the same time, especially during fiercely religious periods in Europe which lasted from about the 7th to the 17th century, they fostered extensive study of root texts like the Torah and so forth which are highly complex intellectually speaking and form the basis of their superior genetic capabilities in cognitive and societal organization. Similar to buddhist madhyamikha scholars, they can argue any point from four different opposing point of view and win.

    The problem with Zionism as a practical enterprise is that you are trying to transpose a nomadic or non-territory-based culture and people into a traditional territory-based one. And given the cultural history of existing as ‘we the chosen people’ living amongst larger, established cultures – which involves by definition the ability to maintain clear separation of ‘us’ and ‘them’ even whilst using the cultural resources of ‘them’ to provide the means to provide livelihood for ‘us’ – they find themselves ill-equipped to suddenly be Gilad’s ‘Masters’. They do not even want the Palestinians to be slaves as he says, I think, rather they simply want them to be the next ‘them’, however in this case finally they are the ones running the joint and ‘they’ are the ones not running the joint.

    However, culturally they are used to being a highly intelligent minority existing within a larger country, not the majority population responsible for all classes of society from top to bottom. This is why they continue to milk European and American peoples for vast sums of money through their international diasporic connections. It is not so much that they need the money per se, although money is always helpful, rather than they need the position of milking larger established power networks in order to keep their place as milkers, only in this case the reason they need the sustenance is not for themselves as families and small communities living within larger ones in a national context, but rather to support and nourish the enterprise of establishing their own traditional nation – which is a small, albeit influential and important one as they believe and manage to engender – as a small nation within the context of the larger international community.

    It is interesting in this context how they cannot work towards establishing themselves as a ‘normal’ nation not dependent on manipulating the financial and political systems of other larger nations such as the UK, France, US, Germany and so forth. Their national model seems to be based on milking these Powers for huge injections of cash and international political influence simply because that is the way they have always functioned as minority – and often unwelcome – communities within larger ones. They are not trying to establish Israel as a normal, independent national community based in a particular geographical territory in the Middle East, including establishing normal, healthy relations with their neighbours, let alone the indigenous population.

    Apart from the tragedy, cruelty, injustice and so forth of the undertaking, the passive aggressive dynamic of how they continue to be dependent upon larger powers whilst insisting they are the One True Democratic Force for Decency and Progressiveness in the region etc. is very revealing of how their underlying nomadic and often dependent cultural history continues to play out today even though in theory – though not in practice – they now have their own ‘nation’ in a particular territory.

    The main reason they cannot come to terms with the Palestinian peoples is simply because they need them as a local ‘them’ to function as a dangerous, hostile enemy in order to justify their continual meddling in and manipulation of Foreign Powers in whose Courts and Constitutions they have for so many centuries insinuated themselves as ‘nomadic elites’, if you will.

    Ultimately, there is no solution to this mess until they dissolve entirely the whole notion of being ‘Chosen People’ and in fact let go of being Jewish as such altogether.

    I am not holding my breath!

  7. Mike McNiven said on May 13th, 2008 at 4:26pm #

    Mr. Atzmon,

    Thank you for this courageous analysis! This is a very good model to study the sexist/racist inhumane US domestic and foreign policies too!