Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Karl Stead's got it right - let's reject the anti-semites

Back in mid-January I took part in a large rally and march held in central Auckland to protest Israel's attack on the Gaza Strip. The protest drew a sharp distinction between opposition to the Israeli government and anti-semitism, and John Minto, one of the organisers, got a loud cheer when he spoke about the ten thousand members of Israel's Jewish and Palestinian communities who had joined forces to march through Jeruslem in protest at the assault on Gaza.

Despite the protest's repudiation of anti-semitism, an ad hoc group calling itself Kiwis for Israel issued a press release which claimed the event was an exercise in Jew-bashing. Kiwis for Israel ignored the words of Minto and other protest organisers, and instead focused on the presence of Jonathan Eisen, the leader of a group of conspiracy theorists that publishes a widely distributed colour magazine called Uncensored. Eisen attended the rally wearing a T-shirt claiming that '9/11 was an inside job', and distributed copies of the December-March issue of Uncensored, which claims that Barack Obama is the tool of Jewish conspirators and that Mossad was responsible for bringing down New York's Twin Towers. Eisen is not the first anti-semite to try to infiltrate Aotearoa's peace movement. Veteran neo-Nazi Kerry Bolton and a group of followers took part in some Wellington protests against the invasion of Iraq, where they distributed anti-semitic literature. Bolton was thrown out of the anti-war movement as soon as organisers realised what he was up to.

The latest issue of Uncensored employs the same tactic that Eisen and Bolton used on peace rallies - it mixes genuine criticisms of Israeli and American foreign policy with anti-semitic conspiracy theories and Holocaust denial.

Uncensored reproduces fragments of commentary on the recent attack on Gaza from the London Review of Books, the liberal Israeli paper Haaretz, and the website of the Swiss Red Cross. All of these publications have made justified criticisms of Israel's bloody and futile incursion into Gaza. But the April-June issue of Uncensored includes not only rational critiques of Israeli foreign policy but a series of rambling and paranoid articles pulled straight from neo-Nazi websites. Consider, for instance, the article 'The Diary of Anne Frank: some Honest Questions' by Jeff Rense, who is a frequent contributor to Uncensored. Rense often uses his website and a radio show he runs in the US to promote the views of neo-Nazis and Holocaust deniers. One of the more frequent and notorious guests on Rense's radio show is Mark Weber, a senior figure at the innocent-sounding Institute of Historical Review, an organisation which specialises in producing claims that the Jews started World War Two and invented the Holocaust after the war.

Rense's article in the latest Uncensored claims that Anne Frank's diary was written by her father. Rense relies for 'evidence' against Anne Frank on Robert Faurrison and Arthur Butz, two of the most notorious Holocaust deniers alive. Butz and Faurrison's claims that the Frank diary was hoaxed have been demolished time and time again. Faurrison has repeatedly claimed that the attic where the Frank family hid was too small for them, ignoring the fact that the SS officer who arrested the Franks in the attic later confessed to the crime. Butz's claim that Otto Frank wrote his daughter's diary after World War Two was comprehensively discredited by forensic tests two decades ago.

Predictably enough, Rense's article slides from baseless claims against the Anne Frank diary into wholesale denials of the Holocaust. According to Rense, the gas chambers at Auschwitz and other death camps were actually showers, and the Zyklon B which killed Jews in the gas chambers was actually used to cure them of lice. According to Rense, conditions at Auschwitz 'couldn't have been that harsh at all', because Anne Frank's father emerged from the place alive in 1945. Rense neglects to mention that no other member of the Frank family was so lucky.

Rense believes that the Nazis' 'well-intentioned efforts' to look after Jews at places like Auschwitz were turned into 'the most transparent lies' by the 'Holocaust industry' that was set up after World War Two when the Jews realised that 'Zionism must be propped up'.

In the past, Jonathan Eisen has sometimes responded to criticisms of material in Uncensored by saying that he does not necessarily agree with everything he prints, but is only circulating it so that 'people can make up their own minds'. But the Rense article and the other anti-semitic pieces in the new Uncensored are full of deliberate distortions of the historical record, which make it harder for readers to develop well-informed opinions, and no attempt is made to balance the views the anti-semites advance.

It is not as though it would be hard for Eisen to locate material which refuted the ravings of the Holocaust deniers. There is a broad and straight road leading from Hitler's earliest pronouncements, to the genocidal rhetoric in Mein Kampf, to Nazi actions during their early years in power, when Jews were excluded from public life and harrassed, to the massacres of Jews and Slavs by SS units working in the rear of the German advance into Poland at the beginning of the Second World War, to the beginning of industrialised slaughter at camps like Auschwitz in the early forties.

Holocaust deniers cannot explain why five or six million Jews went missing in Europe during World War Two, if there was no campaign to exterminate them. They cannot explain the tens of thousands of Jews and gentiles who have testified to the existence of the death camps. They cannot explain the thousands of documents - plans and photographs of camps and gas chambers, deportation orders, notebooks in which deaths were recorded by the thousand, memoranda from camp commanders - which the Nazi bureaucracy secreted during its war against the Jews. The Holocaust deniers also struggle to explain why there were vast piles of bodies lying about at camps like Auschwitz when these camps were liberated in 1945. If, as the Jeff Rense claims, Auschwitz was a hospital, then it clearly didn't do a very good job.

In most courts of law, the eyewitness testimony of a single witness to a crime is sufficient to bring a conviction. The crime of the Holocaust had innumerable witnesses. Why do the Holocaust deniers and the editor of Uncensored completely ignore these voices? We can only answer this question by referring to anti-semitism. For the likes of Rense and Eisen, Jews are not capable of giving reliable testimony, because they are by nature duplicitous and conspiratorial. Hitler was right to hate and fear them.

Eisen himself shows his hand when he appends an editor's note to the sequence of anti-semitic articles in the latest Uncensored. In his note Eisen makes a series of utterly false claims about Jewish and European history. He asserts that, by the time that Zionism began to emerge as an ideology in the second half of the nineteenth century, 'Jews had largely assimilated into the mainstream cultures' of Europe, and 'persecutions has passed into history, at least in Western Europe'.

In fact, in many nineteenth century European nations Jews were still subjected to laws that prevented them from assimilating - in Russia, for instance, they were banned from entering vast areas, and from working in certain occupations. Even in relatively liberal Britain, Jews were still barred from parliament, the leading universities and the law profession for most of the nineteenth century.

The meaning behind Eisen's false claims about assimilation and an absence of persecution is clear: he is suggesting that it was Zionism that was responsible for the prejudice that Jews encountered in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Like Jeff Rense and so many other contributors to Uncensored, Eisen appears to believe that the anti-semitism of the Hitler regime was a response to the evil machinations of Zionists. Such a view bears no relation to reality: whatever we think of Zionism as a political ideology, it posed no threat at all to the German people in the 1930s and '40s.

Eisen, though, seems determined to endorse the neo-Nazi argument that Jews, and not the Hitler regime, were responsible for World War Two. His editorial dwells on the Rothschild family, long a bugbear for anti-semites, and claims that they 'helped to engineer' the war of 1939-45. Eisen's own words, then, condemn him as an anti-semitic conspiracy theorist. It is good that his paranoid pronouncements met with no discernable support at the peace rally a couple of months ago.

In a recent, semi-coherent interview that one of his followers has posted to youtube, Eisen complains about the 'stupidity' of the protesters who refused to accept the ideas in Uncensored. Eisen is particularly angry at senior New Zealand writer Karl Stead, who attended the rally against the attack on Gaza but bluntly refused Eisen's offer of a free copy of Uncensored.

Eisen raves about Stead's 'blindness', but the author of Smith's Dream should be commended for clearly distinguishing legitimate criticism of Israeli policies from rabid anti-semitism. People like Eisen do a disservice to genuine critics of Israel, and give succour to the right-wing argument that all critics of Israel are anti-semites. The entire left should follow Stead's example and blackball Eisen and Uncensored, in the same way that it has rejected Kerry Bolton and his neo-Nazi friends.

22 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

at indymedia the anti-semites are running wild.

10:38 pm  
Blogger Richard Taylor said...

Stead taught Pound and Eliot (I still have copy of his excellent book The New Poetic) when I was at Uni in 1968 - he has always been in protests - despite criticism leveled at him I admire his writing and his courage and intelligence. Smith's Dream is only one book - turned into a film.

His critical works are excellent also and his poetry.

Anti-Semitism seems to be growing. It is born of fear, ignorance and hate. It is a sickness of the soul.

12:18 am  
Anonymous keri h said...

Richard Taylor - Karl Stead has been- for over 2 decades- provocatively & deliberately anti-Maori/anti-Polynesian when it comes to writers & writing, and he has steadily got more rightwing the older he grows. His poetry is - far as I'm concerned as a reader - tired (I prefer Curnow or Smithyman for people of his generation.) I have little time for him.

I think hatred of 'the other' has LESSENED since I was young - including antisemitism. And I dont believe in souls-

but, all reasonable activities against wee ratshits like Doutre, "UnCensored" et al, are to be encouraged.

1:17 am  
Blogger maps said...

When I applaud Stead for standing up to Eisen and his gang I don't mean to give the man a free pass on other issues. Stead certainly has some very flawed views about Maori issues, and his ideas about education are also highly dubious.

I was deeply unimpressed when Stead went on the radio in 1994 and said that 'Maori culture could never rival the glories of European culture'. The very idea of such comparisons is absurdly ahistorical. I was equally unimpressed when he wrote a paper condemning the 'decline' of education and the abolition of School C for the Business Roundtable front group the Education Forum.

When I get time I'm going to post about these things, and link them to some of the themes in Smith's Dream, a book I've been rereading. I'm fascinated by the difference between the fortunes of Stead's dystopia and Craig Harrison's Broken October, a fine novel which was published at about the same time, has quite similar subject matter, and yet languishes in obscurity.

7:51 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Richard Taylor kowtows to the establishment when he has to.

4:02 pm  
Blogger Richard Taylor said...

"Richard Taylor kowtows to the establishment when he has to."

You think I kowtow to the establishment when it is necessary? You mean Stead represents the establishment?

I personally have always quite liked him and his writings - and I believe he deserves respect for his knowledge and his stand over the years against fascism and injustice. I don't know him well enough to kowtow to him...

There is some controversy about his literary views and who should be in certain schools or whatever - but I feel these are merely matters of opinion (and I more or less concur with his views - or some of them).
Certainly his books of criticism are great reading and very insightful - pace Jack Ross.

As to Monsieur John Key and Madame Clark - I am strongly critical of them both in many areas - but this doesn't mean I hate them or despise them as individuals. Both I believe are - as moral or ethical beings - of a stature that these Nazis Scott talks about have no hope of ever attaining - their faults are mild - they, unlike the depraved Boltonites, the Doutres, and the Eisens, the other racists haters on this orb; Stead and Key etc are liberals of great integrity and possessing excellent human qualities.

These others such as Bolton and so on are the worst of vermin in comparison.

I didn't kowtow in 1981 when I put myself in the front line and took a batten right in my face that split my lip.

Have I never "kowtowed"? Of course I have - we cant go through life fighting and disagreeing with everyone...Sometimes the most rebellious of us have to keep a job or get one!

I have been known to flee (in abject terror in situations of conflict) as fast as any mouse - but I console myself with Falstaff's comment that: "Discretion is always the better part of valour" and that I have "I lived to fight (or flight) another day."

Let's be realistic about this: we cant all be John Mintos..."All I have is pen, to undo the folded lie" (Auden)

"Gnothi seuton" - is phrase I learnt from school as child - the only or the little Greek I know - it means "Know thyself"...

5:20 pm  
Blogger Richard Taylor said...

Kerei Hulme - I'll reply to the part of your post - but my reference to souls was - shall we say "poetic" rather than religious.

I think in light of what I know of Stead I stand by what I said.

I have never seen anything anti Maori by him.

But I don't care what you think.

5:24 pm  
Blogger Richard Taylor said...

"But I don't care what you think."

Keri Hulme

My apologies for this - of course I respect your views - I only saw the comments by "anonymous" about me "kowtowing" so I was a bit grumpy
- so I thought others might think I was also "kowtowing" to you -

Maps - get these cowards who post "anonymously" booted off here!

But I missed Map's comments, and yours before I saw "anonymous"'s stupid comment about kowtowing, & thus about Stead - I don't see Stead as "evil" in the way I see certain others Maps is talking about.

I haven't seen much by Stead that is too bad but I am sure he has controversial views - but I feel this isn't the time to attack Stead or to evaluate his poetry or other writing or even some of his minor political imperfections - we all have different styles - after all he should be involved in any such discussion - Maps or I could even ring him up - he is not far - and interview him - maybe he has mellowed - in any case - I still repect him for his positive qualities - The point is - people are complex.

Churchill was said to be a "warmonger" and so on - but let's get things clear - he wasn't a fascist - I am of English parentage - I am very English in my thinking - and I am proud of my great British culture and my heritage - we defeated Jerry twice - make no mistake - and Churchill had no time for fascism - nor find the British people with their long history of a great culture and of democracy - set against the Nazis he was great man that England needed...we need to unite against a common enemy here again.

I doubt if Stead and anything to do with Douglas (who is a duffer) or the round table: Stead is a writer not a politician...he might be an expert on Pound but I don't think he shares Pound's politics!

Let's unite - none of this literary or political back biting that goes on interminably tediously - I stay away from Map's mates as the Left - I am afraid - are mostly wingers and boozers; and many in the CP were alcoholic boozers also BTW, and also often corrupt - in fact I met communists (Trotsykists, Maoists, Stalinists..you name them...) who were anti semitic! - who (did and they still do today) go on and on about how bad people are - rarely are they positive, or even hopeful!!

Then they wonder how Hitler got into power in Germany...

Bolton and his ilk will be having a field day seeing us squabble like old cats over fish bones: "Look at the the Left moaning about each other's foibles and faults over on Reading the Maps!...they are even running down that old Communist Stead!! And he's on their side!! Ha ! Ha! They cant even agree!!!"

The Left moan and winge and booze on and on - forgetting they are meant to actually care for people and effect some positive changes.

9:02 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We all know about Geico's lovely conditioning of the reptilian agenda (stupid british accented personified slimy gecko). Now they have found a very disturbing way to promote the all seeing eye.

They take a couple of stuffed animal LARGE eyes and stick them on top of money. They you are attracted to the money but you must get watched by the eyes. They have been doing this where they control much of what we see:

TV
Print Ads
Toll Plazas (as you come up to them)
Street Banners (25 feet high eyeballs staring at you)
Airplane banners that troll the skies (300 feet eyeballs staring at you)

GEICO loves to condition the barbarians to Love the NWO.

12:44 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

for more information see
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anLqu77uTH0

12:46 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The capacity of the human mind for self-delusion is extraordinary.
The thread of reason is very fine.
The fire of rational inquiry which the Greeks lit two and a half thousand years ago is constsantly in danger of being quenched by darkness. It is important to defend the tradition of open inquiry from irrationalism posing as free speech.

10:25 am  
Anonymous Infectious films said...

If you like the article you'll probably like the video I made of the protest, enjoy! And note that if you watch close you'll see that Jon Eisen was at the protest too!

copy the link below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbvLGRdsgog&feature=channel_page

1:32 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's examine the amount of donations the IHR/Mark Weber received from the revisionist/patriot community, and then ask this question: Is the revisionist/patriot community getting a good return on their money?

For said years, the IHR/Mark Weber took in the following in "Contributions, Gifts, Grants, And Similar Amounts Received: Direct Public Support."

Tax Year 2000--$346, 572

Tax Year 2001---$209, 229

Tax Year 2002---$610, 152

Tax Year 2003--$210, 363

Tax Year 2005--$409, 477

Tax Year 2006--$299, 623

Now, this adds up to be $2,085,416. That is to say, the IHR/Mark Weber took in $2,085,416 in donations from the Revisionist/patriot community for these six tax years. Have we, in turn, received a good return on our money????

I say, Hell no!!! Mark Weber destroyed the Journal of Historical Review, the yearly IHR conferences, the IHR's book publishing arm, and the IHR newsletter. He even refuses to sponsor a weekly Radio talk show!

What does Mark Weber/IHR do to deserve $2,085,416 from the Revisionist/patriot community???? Well, he sends out newspaper clippings to one thousand people or less. He sells a bunch of old books and DVDs, many of which are decades old. He attempts to market the works of others like Kevin MacDonald and Pat Buchanan--books that can be obtained cheaper elsewhere. And finally, every once in a great while Weber writes a short essay or gives a short speech.

In my opinion, this is madness!!!! The $2,085,416 is a horrendous waste of money!! I can think of far more productive ways to utilize this money than to send it to Mark Weber.

Unfortunately, Mark has proven himself to be a horrible leader and Director. He led the charge to destroy Willis Carto's Liberty Lobby and the Spotlight, and took in about one million dollars to boot? And what does he have to show for it? Absolutely nothing!!

Mark Weber destroyed the Journal of Historical Review, the IHR's book publishing arm, the yearly IHR conferences, and the IHR's newsletter. And what has Mark Weber given us in return?? Well, he sends out newspaper clippings to a thousand people or less.

Weber has very little business acumen, as "his" IHR is forever teetering on the brink of financial disaster, despite the fact that he beat Carto in court and took in one million dollars. Contrast Weber's poor record with that of his hated enemy, Willis Carto. Carto lost his home, his Liberty Lobby and Spotlight, but he bounced back and went on to create the American Free Press and The Barnes Review, etc.

People who have been in a position to observe Mark Weber first hand, like former IHR editor Ted O'Keefe and former IHR employee Ken Usher, will tell you that he has an inability to get his work done. Indeed, this character trait has plagued much of his career. He was supposed to write a very important book, The Final Solution: Legend and Reality. Vintage Weber--he never finished the book. Brilliant procrastinator that he is, Mark can always concoct a convenient excuse as to why it is not his fault that he never published this important book.

In a six year period, Mark Weber/the IHR took in a whopping $2,085,416!! And he has next to nothing to show for it. He is wasting Our Revisionist/patriot money. His web site basically consists of a bunch of newspaper clippings, old issues of the now-defunct Journal of Historical Review, and he attempts to sell very old books or other people's books (books that can be easily obtained elsewhere). Every once in a great while, he gives a short speech or writes an essay. His main duty appears to be to send out newspaper clippings to about one thousand people. This is foolish waste of the large sums of money that Weber is taking in from the revisionist/patriot community and things have to change.

One of the most important functions of a "political/historical think-tank" like the IHR is to "keep current." That is to say, to provide new and original scholarly material on political and historical issues. Mark Weber's IHR virtually does none of this.

Please keep in mind Mark Weber's battle cry, which he conveniently used when he was fighting Carto: "The IHR does not belong to one man. It belongs to all of us, because without all of us it would not exist." Ergo, we all have a right to join in the attempt to improve the IHR.

In a best-case scenario, I believe our goal should be to get Mark Weber to be more productive. This would be in the best interests of himself and the entire movement. Specifically, he should re-start the Journal of Historical Review, and he should host a weekly Internet Radio broadcast.

But I hold no illusions about Mark. He wants to do the least amount of work and to continue to collect a paycheck for so doing. He is as stubborn as a mule, and there is probably nothing that can be done to make him more productive. This being so, he should resign from the IHR.


But, once again, I hold no illusions about this either. Mark Weber has a tighter grip on the IHR than Willis Carto ever did. He is not going to give up his control of the IHR, and thus, it will probably go bankrupt in the near future. It cannot go on like it is in this present non--productive condition.

11:38 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of course someone of Jewish parentage can become an anti-semite. Look at Gilad Atzmon. Eisen appears to be mentally ill, but that doesn't mean he isn't guilty of spreading anti-semitism. You can't publish articles that say there were no gas chambers and then throw up your hands and say you're innocent just because you've got Jewish parentage.

Clare Swinney is also a nutbar from way back. She worked for Ian Wishart's Investigate magazine until her theories about 9/11 being a Jewish inside job and the NZ govt building concentration camps outside Wellington got too much even for Wishart.

If anyone is stupid enough to share the stage with these nuts then they deserve to be named and shamed.

12:23 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The lovely Claire also forgot to mention that she is a long-time journalist for Uncensored, writing articles with such enlightened titles as: The Zionist Nexus Linking 9-11 and the Financial Crisis - What if the Satanists Were In the White House? - Mossad linked to 9/11 attacks: Report - etc.

Nice work Claire.

5:28 pm  
Blogger Richard Taylor said...

"Of course someone of Jewish parentage can become an anti-semite. Look at Gilad Atzmon. Eisen appears to be mentally ill, but that doesn't mean he isn't guilty of spreading anti-Semitism. You can't publish articles that say there were no gas chambers and then throw up your hands and say you're innocent just because you've got Jewish parentage."


I agree in general.

Fischer - the World Chess Champion and considered one of the greatest chess players of all time was of Jewish parentage but became (to some degree) paranoid, and very anti-Semitic (you can see this on You Tube) - interestingly many Jewish Chess players still admired him (but not his really gauche (and often vile) views) and saw through to what he was... but amongst the Chess playing community the controversy of him goes on.

This kind of self hate is the root of many problems - political/social and other - if someone fails to completely love themselves (I don't mean arrogance or egotism) - they will turn that that hate outwards to some other object or person - it can be race or whatever.

This seems to somewhat describe Hitler and many others - people from criminals to those who are just objectionable - in varying degrees it partly describes us all - of course this is only a fraction of the picture.

Gita Sereny, the OSS (a psychological study of Hitler during the 2nd WW), Susan Sontag and others have attempted to analysis the Holocaust.

In his own way so did Francis Webb the Australian poet - who wrote a radio play centred on Hitler (based on a reasonably factual account). It was an attempt to see Hitler not as monster but as what we - we each of us - can potentially - become.

In book about war in general it was observed of the SS etc that inmates of the death camps saw them as not really greatly different to from anyone else -
this was the terrible fact.

10:06 pm  
Blogger Richard Taylor said...

Here is the title and a quote about the book about war -

---[Almost one hundred years ago, WWI was touted as the war to end all wars. It didn't. David Livingstone Smith writes in the preface to The Most Dangerous Animal: Human Nature and the Origins of War, that "almost 200 million human beings, mostly civilians, have died in wars over the last century, and there is no end in sight." Why do we continue? That is the question Smith attempts to answer in The Most Dangerous Animal. He combines two sharply polarized historical views — that war is, behind the layers of artificial civility, our base nature and conversely, that war is a corruption of an otherwise gentle, kind, pure nature — to argue that war is caused by both "forces working in tandem; it is a child of ambivalence, a compromise between two opposing sides of human nature."

As is often the case, perhaps more obviously so for non-fiction than fiction, to understand an author's approach and biases, it is instructive to look at some biographical details. Perhaps it is the controversial nature of his approach, more than his topic or thesis, that compelled Smith to be as transparent, one could almost say defensive, as he is in the preface. Smith, born in New York City and educated partially in London, England, practiced and taught psychoanalytic psychotherapy for some time. After becoming skeptical of psychotherapy in general, he turned to the study of the philosophy of mind and the philosophy of psychology, leading him eventually to the significance of evolutionary biology in the study of human nature. He is currently associate professor of philosophy at the University of New England, where he is also the co-founder and director of the New England Institute for Cognitive Science and Evolutionary Psychology. He is also the author of Why We Lie: The Evolutionary Roots of Deception and the Unconscious Mind.

The Most Dangerous Animal is, as he puts it, "unashamedly rooted in an evolutionary biological perspective," and he moves, again in his own words, "promiscuously between disciplines — from psychology, to philosophy, to prehistoric archeology, with forays into anthropology, psychoanalysis, and even microbiology." Aware that some may thus regard him as a jack-of-all-trades and master of none, he counters that "Nature does not respect the artificial boundaries between disciplines carved out by university departments." Fortunately for Smith, not only does his argument absolutely depend upon an interdisciplinary approach, but interdisciplinary studies are increasingly in vogue nowadays. His unashamedly evolutionary biological perspective will no doubt push many religiously conservative readers away. It is his hope, and mine as well, that this book will reach not only an exclusively secular readership, but that even those uneasy with his perspective will follow his argument through to its conclusion.] ---

10:42 pm  
Anonymous Mira said...

Hi Maps, you left a comment over on Greens Engage. I very much admire your work to expose Jew haters and prevent them from attaching themselves to the anti-war movement and broader mainstream politics. I really like it that you didn't just throw up your hands at the demo and say "Oh well, inevitable, just ignore them".

I have to plead some haste here which means I haven't had a good look at YouTube for the speeches nor the criticism of the January Auckland protest - but I wonder if you could explain more what it was that satisfied you that the criticism of the protest as antisemitic was unfounded.

Was it simply the assertion of John Minto? Based on a quick search of his blog, he omits all of the conflicts which intensified at that time (Congo, Sri Lanka, Darfur) and concentrates on Israel's. He also wants Israel to be subsumed into a single secular state. He uses Warsaw Ghetto comparisons, and he boycotts Israel. I am happy to go on at length about why it is reasonable to consider that (in the absence of calls for other states to dissolve, and in the current circumstances in that region) is an discriminatory view to hold - allbeit a very different one to Uncensored. But for now I spare you.

What do you reckon?

10:23 am  
Blogger Ross Brighton said...

I too am slightly suspicious of Minto's views on israel - though, of course, i am critical of the government's policies. It's very easy to oversimplify, criticise and believe you have the solutions when looking from the outside. Regarding Stead, he's a nice guy, but the comments he made about Keri, and those recounted by Scott are realy offensive.
As are any that negate the expeeriences of millions during "that which happened" (Paul Celan), and left that brilliant poet so broken, yet still able to paradoxically write some of the most beautiful verse the german language has ever seen.

10:09 am  
OpenID clareswinney said...

To Anonymous who went to such trouble to try and link me to some conspiracy of his/her fabrication, while you stated that I had written articles "with such enlightened titles as: The Zionist Nexus Linking 9-11 and the Financial Crisis - What if the Satanists Were In the White House? - Mossad linked to 9/11 attacks: Report - etc." you are incorrect, I did not write them. Do your homework properly and why not gauge me from the thousands of posts I have written on a variety of websites, instead of tying me to 2 or 3 items I posted?

Also, my name is Clare, not Claire.

Not nice work "Anonymous." Get a life.

6:24 pm  
Anonymous John Sanders said...

It's a puzzle to me that in two of his novels Karl Stead has dedications to a Jewish New Zeakander, Gerard Friedlander, unyet has no trouble participating in an anti-Israel march designed to delegitimize the State of Israel. in my view this is schizoid behavior.In The Secret History of Modernism one of Stead's characters fails to confront T.S. Eliot over his anti-semitic anti-Jewish proclivities.Anthony Julius in Trials of The Diaspora makes minced meet of the deviousness of those who practice antisemotyosm behind the cover of merely anti-Israel protest.Either Stead is a dupe or a scoundrel notwithstanding his extraordinary talents as writer and teacher.

2:57 pm  
Anonymous John Sanders said...

It's a puzzle to me that in two of his novels Karl Stead has dedications to a Jewish New Zealander, Gerard Friedlander,unyet has no trouble participating in an anti-Israel march designed to delegitimize the State of Israel.In my view this is schizoid behavior.In his novel The Secret History of Modernism one of his characters backs down from confronting T.S. Eliot with his anti-semitic proclivities.Anthony Julius in Trials of the Diaspora unmasks the deviousness of those who hiding behind the pretence of Israel bashing practice antisemitism.Either Stead is a scoundrel or a dupe notwithstanding his extraordinary talents as writer and scholar. I rather fancy the latter rather than the former.

3:08 pm  

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