Sunday, May 18, 2014

  • Sunday, May 18, 2014
  • Elder of Ziyon
Michael Lumish, of the Israel Thrives blog as well as a regular blogger at Times of Israel and Jews Down Under, continues his weekly column here at EoZ.





Interm1In my recent Sunday pieces for the Elder we have discussed the western-left's betrayal of its core values and constituency.  We have discussed its betrayal of women in the Middle East, its betrayal of Gay people in the Middle East, its betrayal of the dying-out Christian minority in the Middle East, and its betrayal of the besieged Jewish minority there.

My argument is that there is a generally unacknowledged tension between the twin progressive pillars of universal human rights and the multicultural ideal and that the latter has won out, organically, and is now in the process of strangulating the former.

That is, within progressive-left venues, the movement for universal human rights - which stands at the very heart of progressive-left ideology - is currently being eroded by the multicultural ideal because the two are logically incompatible.  The movement for multiculturalism in the West comes out of the finest ideals of western liberalism.  The animating spirit behind the movement was "live and let live."  Countries do not need to be "melting pots" in which assimilation wipes out cultural distinctions, but can be "salad bowls" in which cultures come together while maintaining their delicious differences.

The problem, of course, is that multiculturalism depends upon a certain type of cultural sensitivity which discourages criticism of previously subordinate cultures.  It is fine and good for western Europeans to castigate their own cultures and societies for any number of crimes and shortcomings, both real and imagined, but there is very little place for the grandchildren of white "imperialists" and "colonialists" to criticize the grandchildren of their former servants within progressive-left venues for reasons that are entirely obvious.

Thus post-colonialist sensitivities trump concerns over misogyny, gender or religious apartheid, or the kind of violent homophobia typical of political Islam.  And in this way the ideal of universal human rights is eroded in the west - while being virtually non-existent in the Muslim Middle East - because it cannot be championed within a spirit of multiculturalism.  Universal human rights is a concept that ultimately derives from the western political Enlightenment of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in Europe and the North American continent.  To insist that it be applied elsewhere is often discussed as a form of cultural imperialism and therefore good progressives avoid doing so.

Who are we, after all, us children of white privilege, to push our allegedly "enlightened" agendas upon the rest of the world?

In other words, we are witnessing a crash of ideologies within the western-left, itself, and I landed on the Elder's yard simply as one individual fall-out from that crash.

It is precisely because of this conflict between the ideal of universal human rights and the ideal of multiculturalism within the progressive-left soul that we are currently witnessing the betrayal of women in the Muslim Middle East, the betrayal of Gay people in the Muslim Middle East, the devastation of millenia-old Christian communities in the Muslim Middle East, and the never-ending siege of the Jewish minority in that part of the world.

Frank1We have touched upon the ways in which the so-called "Palestinian Narrative" has colonized Jewish minds and the manner in which Palestinian-Arab nationalism blatantly seeks to erase actual Jewish history for the purpose of replacing it with some fake and insidious historical doppleganger in which all things Jewish magically become "Palestinian."  Jesus, therefore, becomes the first "Palestinian shaheed," for example.  Or we get images of Anne Frank in a keffiyah, with the clear implication that just as the "Palestinians" are the New Jews, so the Jews are the New Nazis.

The point in introducing these concepts and this material is to lay out some relevant progressive-left ideological trends, and thus backdrop, to the behavior of the Obama administration viz-a-viz the State of Israel and Middle East policy, more generally.

All of this, of course, needs to be fleshed out far more thoroughly and fairly articulated objections need to be considered.

All Acknowledge the Obvious is is the beginning of an outline.

The Elder was kind enough to give me a space within which to discuss such things and I appreciate it very much.  Beyond that what I want is for people who care about Israel, and the well-being of the Jewish people, to begin the process of rethinking what I sometimes call the Oslo Delusion.  This is the idea that the Jews of the Middle East have not made nearly enough concessions to the Arab majority and if they would only make more concessions and, perhaps, release more murderers of Jews from Israeli prisons, then maybe we can have honest peace deal.

What I will consider next, therefore, will primarily be Obama administration behavior concerning the peace process and its relationship to the State of Israel.  We will also discuss the Obama administration's reaction to the "Arab Spring" and its failure to force the Muslim Brotherhood down the throats of unwilling Egyptians.  We will discuss how the Obama administration had Hamas's back during Operation Pillar of Defense and the ways in which the Obama administration leads from behind in the movement to boycott, divest from, and sanction the Jewish State.

An early outline of what I am up to might look something like this:

On Settlements and Stupidity:  


The Progressive-Left Betrayal of the Jews and Human Rights in the Age of Obama

A Personal Introduction: Defaming the Jews on the Progressive-Left

        The Betrayal: Stating the Problem
         9/11 and America Gone Crazy
         The Blogs and Bush Hatred
          Progressive-Left Anti-Zionism
          Universal Human Rights encounter the Multicultural Ideal
          Jewish Stockholm Syndrome and My Departure


          The Progressive-Left and the Democratic Party

Chapter 1: The Backdrop of BDS and Anti-Semitic Anti-Zionism
          Traditional Islamic Jew Hatred
          Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union
          The New Historians and Edward Said
          The Mavi Marmara and the Red-Green Alliance

Chapter 2: Erasing Jewish History
          Language and Propaganda
         “Jesus was the First Palestinian Shaheed”
          Pallywood and the Fabrication of History through Fake Journalism
          The Social Construction of Palestinian National Identity

Chapter 3: The Palestinian Colonization of the Progressive Jewish Mind
          Post-Modernity and Neo-Colonial Theory
          The Oslo Syndrome
          Friends as Enemies, Enemies as Friends
          The Palestinian Narrative

Chapter 4: Multiculturalism and the Betrayal of Universal Human Rights
          The Betrayal of Women
          The Betrayal of Gays
          The Betrayal of Jews
          The Betrayal of Christians

The Obama Administration

Chapter 5: Killing Oslo and Validating Arab Anti-Jewish Racism
          “Total Settlement Freeze”
          Biden’s Outrage and Hillary’s Tongue-lashing
          A Judenrein Palestinian State

Chapter 6: The “Arab Spring” and the Rise of Political Islam
          Befriending the Muslim Brotherhood
          Syria and the American Retreat

Chapter 7: Saving Hamas and the Birth of the State of Palestine
          Operation “Pillar of Defense”
          Mr. Abbas Goes to the United Nations
          The Failure of Talks and Delegitimization "on steroids"

Conclusion:

Chapter 8:  Moving On



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