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Tuesday, February 06, 2007


The short answer, of course, is ‘No!’

The question arises only because the Western ‘Right’ have used the notion of the Western ‘Left’ being in alliance with the Islamic ‘Right’ as a propaganda tool against the Western ‘Left’ because the Western ‘Left’ are not supporting the Western ‘Right’ in their fight against what they perceive to be the Islamic ‘Right’.

The notion has its source in the statement made by George W. Bush on 20 September 2001 when he said quite emphatically: “You are either with us or you are with the terrorists”.[1] In the eyes of the Western ‘Right’ that statement precluded the options of not being with either or of being against both. Since those words were spoken Western ‘Right’ leaders and the mainstream media have taken the notion literally in order to berate the ‘Left’.

For example; Jeremy Cordeaux, at the time a radio personality in Adelaide, South Australia, asked Australian Prime Minister John Howard, one of the world’s staunchest allies of President Bush, about a month before the allied invasion of Iraq and just after the massive demonstrations around the world protesting against the pending war, this: “Let me ask you first, what did you think when you saw 400,000 fellow Australians on the streets demonstrating in a way that was, they say, against war but really it was in favour of Saddam Hussein?” Howard responded with: “…I do know also that demonstrations do give comfort to the Iraqi leadership, there's no doubt about that.”[2] The reality that Cordeaux failed to grasp was the fact that people weren’t supporting Saddam Hussein, but simply did not support war – especially a war that most people knew by then was based on lies. Howard, forever the politician however, played on Cordeuax’s words brilliantly by not quite explicitly saying that the 400,000 were in favour of Saddam Hussein but inferring it by saying that it gave ‘comfort to the Iraqi leadership’.

The fact that so many people demonstrating against an impending war against Iraq more than likely did give ‘comfort to the Iraqi leadership’ is hardly the point. What Howard and Cordeaux had succeeded in doing was to plant the seed that being against the war was tantamount to being in favour of terrorism as exemplified by the arch villain of terrorism Saddam Hussein who was about to be attacked for what was claimed to be his part in world terrorism.

Right-wing commentators, particularly right-wing Zionist propagandists, have ever since been pushing the line that the left-wing that is against the war is somehow in an alliance with right-wing Islamic militarism. One has even gone so far as to have written a book about it. David Horowitz’s book is about what he perceives as, and is titled, an ‘Unholy Alliance: Radical Islam and the American Left’. Horowitz argues that the American left has forged an alliance with radical Islamists in order to jointly oppose America’s war on terrorism and its war in Iraq. The argument is based on the precept that the American left is ‘anti-American’, an absurdity in much the same way as some Jews are being called ‘self-haters’ because they don’t share the right-wing Zionist view about Israel’s fight against the Arabs is an absurdity.

When the right-wing says that someone is ‘anti-American’ it is based on the assumption that the right-wing view of ‘America’ is the one and only acceptable view that one may have of America. It is an arrogant premise. If ones view is not aligned with the right-wing view it is considered then to be anti-American. The right-wings view of the ‘Left’ being ‘anti-American’ is based purely on arrogance and has little to do with reality. Horowitz bases his entire argument on the premise that the ‘Left’ is ‘anti-American’ and so, ipso facto, must be pro right-wing Islam. It is a deliberate lie that is based on deceit and paranoia.

The concept works in much the same way as the propaganda of the right-wing Zionists who insist that any opposition to them is ‘anti-Semitic’ even if those that oppose them are actually Jewish themselves. Most people are aware, however, that indeed it is just propaganda.

The ‘Left’ did not oppose the war because it supported Saddam Hussein. The ‘Left’ opposed the war with Iraq because the war was being launched based on ulterior motives. Most of the peoples of the world were not fooled for one moment by the lies and rhetoric coming from Western right-wing leaders. Most of the peoples of the world knew that what the war was really about was oil, hegemony and Israeli interests and these facts were made quite clear at the various rallies and demonstrations that were held around the world just prior to the invasion. Everything that has transpired since has proved the ‘Left’ correct in the assumptions that were made then. There were no WMDs, Saddam was not in anyway involved with the events of 9/11 and Iraq certainly was not a threat to the world and nor did it any longer have any ambitions of being nuclear armed. The left cried ‘No war for oil!’ and the right insisted that it was not about oil – yet now the US have secured contracts for Iraq oil guaranteed for the next thirty years. The right lied.

The ‘Left’ is far more concerned about the ulterior motives of the Western ‘Right’ than it is about the Islamic ‘Right’. The ‘Left’ see the Western ‘Right’ as a far greater threat to world security than the Islamic ‘Right’ despite the Western ‘Rights’ propaganda and rhetoric. The bottom line is simply that deaths resulting from the actions of the Western ‘Right’ far outnumber deaths resulting from the actions of the Islamic ‘Right’. The Western ‘Right’ have been exposed as a sham. The rhetoric alleging an alliance between the Western ‘Left’ and the Islamic ‘Right’ is also a sham – just like Saddam’s WMDs were.

Just because the Western ‘Left’ does not support an attack on Iran does not mean to say that it therefore supports the politics of Iranian President Ahmadinejad. The Western ‘Left’ doesn’t support an attack on Iran because the Western ‘Left’ knows that the Western ‘Right’ are simply lying about Iran’s nuclear ambitions and involvement in Iraq in order to find a casus belli to attack it in order to maintain US hegemony in the region and to further Israel’s regional aspirations for a Greater Israel.

[1] President George W. Bush, ‘Address to the Joint Session of Congress and to the American People’, The White House, 20 September 2001. Available online: Accessed 6 February 2007.
[2] ‘Transcript of the Prime Minister the Hon. John Howard MP interview with Jeremy Cordeaux, Radio 5DN’, 20 February 2003, PM Australia website. Available online: Accessed 6 February 2007.


Anonymous said...

On this I think we agree, Damian.

Of course there is no alliance between the Left and the Islamofascissts. I don't think I have ever seen a demonstration in Australia pro-Saddam or pro-Bin Laden.

The Left and the Islamofascists DO have the same goals, however. They both would rather the US not launch a war against Iran just as they both hoped that no war would come to Iraq. While not allied in prinicple they are allied in ends. It is not the same thing - indeed it is much like the US and Soviet forces allying against the Nazis.

I do think it gives comfort to the Islamofacists, however. It is not the intention of the Left to comfort people whose world view is so contrary to their own yet it does seem to comfort them none the less. I wonder if there is a tactic the Left could use in its protests to address this? Is it possible to protest against both Bush and Iran - or would this be mixing the message too much?

Terrence Valter said...

What does it mean to be anti American anyway. I don't particularly like McDonald's but this doesn't make me anti US. If you look at how American culture has pervaded this country it is clear that Australians are not anti US.

I don't like their foreign policies, particularly the aggression the US has shown over the past decades, this view is shared by many Australians.

Do we like Islamic countries such as Iran. I don't see Australians rushing to consume or participate in the culture of Iran. In fact many of their policies and philosophies I an many others reject.

But we don't need to object to Iranian beliefs and cultures, as it is none of our business, what they do in their own country. Bush on the other hand is hell bent on dragging the world to war.

Anonymous said...

RE: Your comment Terrence that "we don't need to object to Iranian beliefs and cultures, as it is none of our business".

I think it would be fair to say that much of the discourse of human rights revolves around objecting to the beliefs and cultures of other states.

I don't think we can speak about the human rights of people unless we apply them to all humans without exception.

/and thus the thread goes off topic
//sorry Damian

Terrence Valter said...

I agree.
As you say off topic, but isn't that the very point I made when we discussed values, and US hegemony.

Damian Lataan said...

Anon, you ask: “It is not the intention of the Left to comfort people whose world view is so contrary to their own yet it does seem to comfort them none the less. I wonder if there is a tactic the Left could use in its protests to address this? Is it possible to protest against both Bush and Iran - or would this be mixing the message too much?”

I believe the Left must forcefully make its position clear on both issues. However, just from the practical point of view, it is far more important to push harder against Bush’s foreign policies and intentions than Irans by simple virtue of the fact that the US and Israel do have nuclear weapons. Iran doesn’t. Nor has Iran invaded anyone and Iran does not occupy dirt that doesn’t belong to them. The US and Israel have invaded countries and both still occupy dirt that does not belong to them.

Naturally, all nations deserve the support of other nations in the quest to ensure human rights for all on our planet. The US and the right-wing of the West have even used the issue of human rights in its propaganda against right-wing Islam generally and against Saddam Hussein, the Mullahs of Iran, and the Iranian President specifically, in the West’s effort to demonise those they consider their enemies and as part of their desire to ‘liberate’ those under the yoke of militant Islam and to force ‘democracy’ upon them. While the Western right-wing criticise their enemies human rights record they are busy hypocritically abusing the human rights of those in the lands that they occupy and of the prisoners they take.

The issue of human rights is at the core of the Lefts desire to create a better world. But forcing people to abandon their practices of human rights abuse by practicing human rights abuse against them – including by use of war and occupation, torture, summary executions and mock trials, bombing, shooting, the killing of innocent people, lies and propaganda, is pure hypocrisy which I believe the world is now beginning to realise.

The Left should be arguing against all human rights abuse but at the moment it seems to me that the right-wing of the US and Israel are abusing far more humans and their lands than the Iranians are.

What is most important for the Left at this time is to point out that being against the Western ‘Right’ in no way implies that the Western ‘Left’ are ‘anti-American’, ‘anti-Semite’ or pro Islamic ‘Right’.

Raskolnikov said...

I think the most interesting part of this passage, as noted in the end, is the fact that Bush deemed Cuba and Iran within his limits of the empire. Such is the mentality that will bring America's downfall, for there are no national limits - no physical or mental boundaries.