by Felix Quigley
Israpundit is a very important site for the Jewish people especially now that there has to be organized a great discussion on just how Israel can face up to its enemies.
The news which has emerged from a source within the talks going on between the Israeli ruling class of Livni and Olmert, with the Palestinian Arab fascists presided over by the US Imperialists of Bush, led in the talks by Rice, shows the enormous dangers which Israel and the lives of all Jews are in. This is why we on 4international are very critical of some of the discussions that are taking place there. The most recent issue is over the issue of apostasy and the general position of religion in the Jewish strugggle. Nobody really likes tackling this but it has to be tackled head on if we are to have the discussion necessary for the saving of Israel from its enemies.
Everything now revolves around the struggle which must end in the removing – quite urgently – of the Olmert regime from power in Israel and its replacement by a Jewish Government, which will stop these talks in their tracks, and will assert the independence of Israel against US Imperialism.
The cadre of 4international are very familiar with the political position of Israpundit because we have all written on Israpundit. So we are following with great dismay that Israpundit is now carrying out a policy of betrayal of the Jews. They certainly do not mean to, but that is the objective result of their political line.
While American Imperialism, that is the whole system and apparatus of the Government of American Imperialism, is intent on the destruction of Israel as an independent entity through the creation of a Fascist Palestinian state next door, Israpundit is lining up with McCain in the American election. All of these candidates, as we on 4international continually point out, represent the system of American Imperialism, all represent the interests of American Imperialism, and Jews have got not ONE friend within American Imperialism.
Israel and Jews have got very many friends among the American people but that is a different perspective which we shall return to.
As we have shown on our articles here, writers on Israpundit, such as Sultan Knish, are arguing the piece on behalf of the reactionary and Serb persecutor John McCain, buddy of Joseph Lieberman who in turn was and is a buddy of the Islamofascists around Izetbegovic in Bosnia and the Fascist gangsters of Thaci/Haradinaj in Kosovo.
An indication of this great betrayal of the Jewish people by Israpundit and its editor Ted Belman is that Israpundit has still, a month later, refused to come out and oppose the Canadian recognition of this Islamofascist excrescence mis-named “Kosova”, even though many writers from Serbia, the US and Australia have written extensively on Israpundit on this, for the edification and education of Ted Belman and Israpundit readers.
In the case of “new boy” to Israpundit – Sultan Knish – he has attacked Trotsky and has emerged as an anti-communist on Israpundit, telling major lies about Trotsky, sullying the name and historical record of Trotsky towards the Jews. Refusing to discuss these lies and their implication on the basis that we on 4international as Trotskyists have got “blood of Jews” on our hands. There could hardly be a greater calumny than that.
Bill Levinson is a clever old fox and he rarely enters debate on such issues. But to put it in a nut shell…Levinson is really representative of Bush on Israpundit. He is gearing to throw the full weight of Israpundit behind McCain.
Meanwhile another character called Yamit82 has emerged on Israpundit and as Belman sits still and does nothing, this person has actually called for the killing of “apostate” Jews on the pages of Israpundit.
This happened on the topic called “Obama is in bed with the Iraq Study Group”.
It is an important topic introduced by Belman, the Iraq Study Group being none other than the collaboration of the notorious Israel hating duo Hamilton and Baker, the latter being the US politician who issued the infamous words “Fuck the Jews anyway”. Actually I am not sure about the “anyway”, but the first 3 words are his and are quite enough.
This is what happened on Israpundit concerning the Yamit82 call for the killing/murder of Jews who do not quite reach the Yamit82 level of communion with God.
First of all I better explain there is a character commenting on Israpundit called H Peskin who tends to follow the Olmert line, at least to some extent, in that he seeks a Palestinian State. We on 4international would naturally be entirely opposed to that political line and seek to oppose the setting up of a Palestine state, mainly through the forcing of the Olmert regime from power, and a new Government elected which will break off the Bush sponsored talks which go on at present.
This exchange took place:
I don’t need to read the Koran to learn about commandments that counsel bloody violence and aggressive acts against the enemy. I can open up almost any page in the old testament and read almost the same. What makes us more compassionate people is the fact that we are by and large less observant and take this whole business not too seriously.I can assure you however we have our nut cases too. They are also not prepared to compromise.
(Repeats the above and answers)
Utter ignorance and nonsense.It is not a matter of comparing written texts that are very old. Rather it is a matter of how each religion dealt with the violent passages. In Judaism, they have been relegated to the past having to do with a specific time and place. They are no longer applicable either practically or religiously. The same can’t be said for Islam.
To equate compassion with loss of religiosity is indefensible, arrogant and self serving.
I am still puzzled by how Ted saw his answer in relation to Peskin, he appeared to be more agreeing with Peskin, and coming into opposition with the line of Yamit82, who maintains that these old texts really ARE the ticket.
The problem with the above answer by Belman for Yamit82 is that in a real way it tended to side with Peskin and against Yamit82. This may have had the effect of enraging Yamit82. His sponsor on Israpundit – Ted Belman – has shown that he is not on his wavelength at all. (I am only speculating about this.)
But there is no speculation possible about what next followed because it all came out of the mouth of a (possibly enraged) Yamit82. It betrays a method of thinking of Yamit 82 that is of real concern. I will try to explain what then happened.
In comment #17 Yamit says this:
Most Jews in Israel would agree with my position here if they had a leadership that would seek to implement them. The so called left is so discredited here that all that is needed is leadership to put Israel on the right course. Secular Israel is a dieing Relic like communism, socialism and all the other false ideologies and Gods that the Jews always seem to gravitate to.
In the end all of those transitory beliefs get replaced with other transitory beliefs while Judaism, real Torah based Judaism is the only Island of consistency that has been unmovable for the last 2 thousand years.
There is no other reason for Jews to be in Israel except for Torah belief and belief in God. There is no other purpose to have a Jewish State except Jewish redemption. I see no reason for Jews living in a Jewish state not to have her own Jewish law and culture. That means the application of Torah law to the extent possible rebuilding the Temple and reconstituting the Sanhedrin. Now in my book you are the extremist and the nut case and I just a proud ex American, Jew living his dream in the Land of Israel.
And hard on its heels (for the sake of continuity I will skip the Yamit82 attack on ourselves as revolutionary socialists in the above) in comment #18 Yamit82 says this, TO PESKIN, whom of course is Jewish:
You can’t debate a believing Christian fundamentalist who will not accept Rabbinical or Talmudic arguments unless you quote his and our scripture to prove your point. You are similar and since you seem to be an apostate self hating Jew and anti Zionist no argument not based on sources that you hold Holy will move you off your position thats Ok you are not important but your arguments do stimulate debate with others and thats good. I just wish you could present your positions with more than inane sophistry though.
The relevant part of the reply by Peskin to this characterisation of him as an “apostate” Jew is this:
For crossing this forbidden line, I am being found guilty of the crime of apostasy which is serious indeed.
(Peskin then reaches for Wikipedia)
For a wikipedia definition of Apostasy see below:
Many religious groups and even some states punish apostates. Apostates may be shunned by the members of their former religious group or worse. This may be the official policy of the religious group or may happen spontaneously, due in some sense to psycho-social factors as well. Historically as well as currently, the offense can be punishable by death. The Catholic Church may in certain circumstances respond to apostasy by excommunicating the apostate, while the traditional holy writings of both Judaism (Deuteronomy 13:6-10) and Islam (al-Bukhari, Diyat, bab 6) demand the death penalty for apostates.
So with his head literally on the chopping block – if Wikipedia is to be believed (and it often should not) Peskin has thrown the issue back to Yamit82 whom had seriously brought up the charge of Peskin being an apostate Jew. This was Yamit82’s reply:
Peskin I have no problem with the truth show me the truth not opinion.Deuteronomy 13:6-10) and Islam (al-Bukhari, Diyat, bab 6) demand the death penalty for apostates. True if you were living in a jewish state governed by Torah Law and a Jewish court that had the authority and power to convict and sentence. Since most Jews today fall into the apostate category I doubt whether this law could be applied. I for one would not be opposed to it in certain circumstances.Lol Good for you now you are making arguments backed up by primary sources. keep it up and we can have serious debate. You jumped on a word I used and ignored your primary positions. Changing the subject is a good ploy though but it won’t work here. We don’t have hit squads yet ready to eliminate all Jewish Apostates, so its not a relevant point of argument. I could have used a number of alternative terms to describe you all pretty harsh, and I believe all true!
The key sentence above is, of course, “I for one would not be opposed to it in certain circumstances”. And I think that Yamit82 is starting to bluster a little. I think Peskin was aware that it was the future he was talking about and the kind of Israel that friend Yamit82 was planning.
So from Yamit82 a little banter perhaps to lighten the tone. But nobody was Laughing out Loud (!) nor should they. To be very charitable to Yamit82, his big mouth had landed him in a lot of hot water.
There the issue would rest and would be forgotten about except that our site, 4international, is committed to not brushing stuff under the carpet.
The words are from the lips of the man himself. He is writing a huge amount of material and is placing it on Israpundit. And he has called above for the murder of “apostate” Jews HAS HE NOT? We have quite a few writers on 4international who are of Jewish extraction and I think it IS a matter for us. I think that Ted Belman should bar Yamit82 from the Israpundit site and should return to the previous Israpundit policy of excluding religious discussion from the site. Ted Belman, there is no arguing with God, you know. That was once your stated position.
This issue centres on Judaism and how people see Judaism. We on 4international are very clear. Judaism is an ancient religion which is actually very tied up with Jewish nationalism, the very existence of Jews as a nation. Judaism, as Herzl learned, held the Jews together through long years of Exile. Without Judaism and the practice of Judaism there simply would be no Israel at all today, to defend. Period! But we also say that Judaism is a religion, it is not a revolutionary theory, it cannot possibly meet and overcome the threat to it of Fascism, which is a modern phenomenon linked in with the very decay and death agony of the Capitalist system, and JUDAISM SHOULD NOT BE ASKED TO DO SO.
This has got a very serious aspect, one which we on 4international have often dealt with.
In the 1930s Trotsky who was a dialectical materialist, philosophically opposed to all religious thinking, not just religion in an organized sense but also all idealist thinking, was deeply concerned with the fate of the Jewish people as they faced the Nazi onslaught.
In short the answer of Trotsky was to assert most strongly that Jews must get out of the killing fields of Nazi Europe. It was an issue of how to fight antisemitism. He saw antisemitism as being waged against Jews on an international scale (and in fact it was waged against Trotsky himself and the Left Opposition in the 1925 to 27 period by the Stalinist bureaucracy, which in that time was using antisemitism in the battle against Trotsky’s policies). So Trotsky saw no help coming to the Jews from any of the world Capitalist powers. How right he was as anybody who knows the history will agree.
Trotsky therefore said that Jews must make their way to Palestine where they must set up their own Jewish state, a space on earth which must be free from antisemitism. There Jews could practice their ancient religion free from molestation.
The only way to go in Israel as in everywhere else is complete separation of state and religion. That is not the case under Yamit82 obviously, and it is not the case either under the Stalinist/Labourist reformist repressive attitude to Judaism of the Israeli ruling class. It seems to us on 4international that they are in fact biassed against Judaism, and they are using the state machinery (Sharon in the Gaza forced withdrawal attacking religious settlers) to repress Judaism.
We on 4international have not moved a great deal from the position of Trotsky in those fateful days of the 1930s. We want a space, Israel, where Jews are completely free to practice their ancient religion, or if they feel so inclined, to not practice it either.
We have on 4international much confidence in the revolutionary potential of the great Jewish people of Israel. We will return to this because the recent poll which we have covered bears this out.
Our position has got the promise of Israel defeating its fascist enemies, the position of Yamit82, well what can we say, is simply atrocious. As is the silence up to now of our colleague Ted Belman on Israpundit. It and he – Yamit82 – should be barred from Israpundit. And from everywhere. In this incredibly pressured situation that Israel is in we cannot have Jews going about threatening to kill other Jews for apostasy, or even suggesting they should be killed. Ted Belman please take action urgently on this matter. Nobody is Laughing Out Loud with or about Yamit82.
Actually Ted Belman ran one of my pieces on IsraPundit that attacked the fraudulent creation of Kosovo. IsraPundit has repeatedly run other pieces on the topic too.
I proudly remain an Anti-Communist. I have had relatives who were murdered fighting Communism. The odd part is that you’re using Anti-Communist as some sort of insult, when it’s the equivalent of accusing someone of being Anti-Pedophile.
So please, feel free to keep denouncing me for something that I or any other moral person would be quite proud of.
You are brain washed by the Imperialist and Capitalist reactionary Media. Your head is full of anti Communism. It is you who has the psychological problems, not us on this site.
You proceed as if there is no working class, never has been a working class, never has been a working class history that has went through all kinds of phases and struggles in its development.
This is the terrible dead end of the type of Zionism you promote and follow. You have a non-historical and non-scientific approach to all of these questions.
Consequently the Russian Revolution is nothing to you, you possibly follow the Paul Johnston (author of History of the Jews) method, of thinking of it as a putsch. But it was not, it was a real workers revolution, the entirely key issue in the end being a revolutionary leadership, which is what Lenin had created in the Bolshevik Party.
And consequently the whole history of the following years means little to you either, even though your relatives were effected. I suspect your relatives were murdered by the Stalinists, but so were the Trotskyists, and if Lenin had lived he would also have been murdered by Stalin.
But the hands of Trotsky and Trotskyism, and indeed of Leninism, are clean so please do not lay the charge of antisemitism or attacks against your relatives against Trotskyism. Trotskyism IS communism. Stalinism is the gravedigger of communism.
Ever since it took place the Imperialist and capitalist class in the world has sought to vilify the Russian revolution and has sought to portray Stalinism as Communism (or Revolutionary Socialism)
As we see in the dead end (apostacy issue) that Yamit82 has entered, then it is obvious that traditional Zionism has been in severe crisis which is getting much more serious and deep as the dangers around Jews build up.
Time will prove our cadre correct. Antisemitism is a horrific evil. But so is antiCommunism.
The Russian Revolution was the transition from one form of feudal rule to another, from one Czar to another. The working class was not represented by Lenin, an upper middle class figure. By the time it was done, peasants had even less than they had under the Czar reverting right back to feudalism and the system found even newer ways to exploit workers and soldiers. The secret police watched everyone and industry was built on blood.
This is a variation of the same system that has always ruled Russia, whether under the Czars or Communism and a variation of the same system is returning again today. Russian Communism was another expression of it, a particularly brutal one, as it would have been under anyone.
Stalin did not walk into a peaceful Communist utopia and begin his butchery, any more than Saddam took over a peaceful Baathist party. Stalinism was simply a senselessly brutal form of Communism perpetrated for one man’s ends. The bloody path of Communism had been set in its ideology, in its brutal rejection of cooperation with fellows socialists and revolutionaries. It was set when under Lenin, the Chekists wore butcher’s aprons while torturing political enemies. It was set with the Red Terror.
Stalin was a monster, but like Hitler, he was simply the apex of the monstrosity of a monstrous system. Neither Lenin nor Trotsky are clean, indeed without them Stalin could never have become what he was.
“The working class was not represented by Lenin, an upper middle class figure.”
Sultan Knish may be wrong on this. He may be right. We cannot know until we do an exhaustive analysis of the whole history to prove whether he is correct or wrong in the above statement. So far we only have his assertion above.
You cannot argue by “assertion”. This is one of the really good things that we have learned from Jared Israel and from Francisco Gil White. You may not agree with their conclusions but they at least they reached those conclusions on the basis of having done as much research on the subject as they could.
This is the weakness in the method of Sultan Knish. He provides no evidence and in fact there is nothing to argue against.
But I will make some comments anyway.
The point about Lenin coming from a middle class background is sometimes used but we have already covered this on 4international. In “What is to be done” Lenin proved fairly well that the consciousness of the working class is usually just spontaneity. To get an overall understanding of society and of reality is not that easy… As we all know very well in trying to understand just what the heck is happening in the world today. And in that regard it is very easy to be swayed by spontaneity. A concrete example, on the Tibet issue, do we go with the emotional Joanna Lumley on BBC, old friend of Cliff Richards (!) who suddenly is projecting herself as expert on Chinese history, or do we try to do some independent research. And that struggle to research the issue is not all that easy.
People on Israpundit, for examply, are fairly strong on reseaching some aspects of knowledge to do with Jewish history, on the issues concerning Yugoslavia, issues which effect them deeply whether they are conscious of it or not, tend to leave them unprepared.
So Lenin and the workers of 1917. Nearly all the strong leaders were from the intellectual milieu, Kamenev, Trotsky, Lenin and scores of others.
The one non intellectual, the “operator” even from the early 1900s, very weak theoretically, was who? Stalin!!! In the field of theory and political debate Stalin was nothing, a grey figure in the background, a kind of practical fixer, with no standing of much consequence.
Lenin was in a conscious fight against Stalin in his last days as he tried to recover from the first stroke.
The period following the Russian Revolution was a period when Russia was invaded by about 20 different countries, such as Britain, France, the US, Japan. It was fighting a war on many fronts. It was a period of great hardship and privations where cannibalism was reported. The country was being blockaded and starved into submission.
Those were the conditions where Stalin began to win the power from the Left Opposition, and in the period of 1926 to 27 it was apparent he was using antisemitism against Trotsky. Of course Stalin denied it but that was his base. His base also was the general tiredness in the working class.
How the revolution of 1917 became corrupted and how Stalin took the power of the state into his hands needs to be studied.
This is the method of science, to study that period or to study any period, or subject before reaching conclusions. It is not an easy discipline.
It has its obvious parallels in the world of Zionism. Do we believe Ami Isseroff that Dir Yassin was a massacre by the Jews of Arabs. My reading suggests otherwise. The best analysis I have seen is by the ZOA. Isseroff does not deal with that. But somebody from ZOA had to sit down and study that.
Similarly with Knish above. It is all assertion, argument by assertion.
Lots of stuff has been written about Trotsky as leader of the Red Army. But Trotsky never took much to do with military operational issues. He assembled a strong cadre, he even used the old experts, the generals from the old Czarist regime. Trotsky was not a military expert.
Trotsky in building the Red Army was providing the political analyses and it was politics which was inspiring the workers. All of this is there in black and white. It was also a war and in that war Trotsky was absolutely ruthless towards the enemy. That is why he was so great and the coming Jewish revolutionaries, Zionists, will have to study that ruthlessness if they are to defeat Fascism.
One thing though about Knish’s answer is that he does refer to the “working class” of Russia. And that is an advance for somebody from Israpundit to use that particular term. They proceed as if there is not a working class in Israel, a working class in America, or in the Arab countries. That is part of the crisis within Israpundit and the whole bourgeois Zionist movement. They see no way out.
The atacks by Knish above on us as Trotskyists are really disgraceful. The Fake “Left” of groups like WRP or WSWS tried to sell the hoax that Jews from 1945 when they were being massacred suddenly changed to the villains when they were supposed to massacre “Palestinians” in 1948.
That was a lie and I have proved totheir face that it is a lie.
In the same way I have proved that these Fake “Lefts” in order to carry out this lie have had to rewrite the life of Trotsky. They could not have it that Trotsky was calling for Jews to set up a Jewish state.
But now they are joined by Knish. This is why it is so disgraceful. Instead of sayinjg, Hey, we didn’t know that Trotsky was a support of the Jewish state of Israel to be. That is a big addition to our struggle. Now we can really hammer the WSWS etc a ttheir very weakest point.
Knish is not interested. He joins with the fake “Lefts” in perpetuating the lie about Trotsky.
Knish inhis life has had lots of time to find this out about Leon Trotsky, that in the 1930s he was supporting the setting up of the Jewish state in Palestine. Why did he never confront these liars who call themselves Lefts and Socialists with this, which is the verifiable truth.
And in everything he has written here Knish has showed us that this is one set of truths that he does not entertain.
I personally have looked at Trotsky, at Marx etc and have been very critical of them. But I do not seek to hide anything. I will follow the truth where it leads.
I ask our cadre to study the whole process, from beginning to end. The revolutionaries like Trotsky did not get everything correct. But we today in our assessment of Zionism also have OUR role to play. That is how knowledge always has to develope.
Knish operates in a different way. he proceeds on the basis of his preconceived ideas.
In a different field that method for the Jews of Israel and in the world today will be absolutely disastrous.
There is so much dividing us from Knish that I do not think we can carry this forward like this. For instance he said that Stalin did not emerge out of a clean, peaceful Bolshevik Party. That is for sure. He emerged out of a Revolution, out of failed Revolutions in many countries abroad, out of a n Imperialist blockade, out of an imperialist controled civil war, out of antisemitism which rose again to the surface, out of serious mistakes and weakness in the party that Lenin had created.
But it was the best part that Lenin was capable of at the time. In the future humans may do better.
But the workers did take power in October 1917. THAT is the great thing. That is what scared the Imperialists so much as any reading of history at the time will tell. It also was like a lightning rod through the internation workers movement. THEY DID IT. The effects are with us every day even today. The bourgeoisie (and the CIA) have never forgotten this.
If it had been just a putsch how could the workers and peasants possibly have won the ensuing war against the might and hatred of Imperialism and their armies.
Knish give over. You really know nothing about this history. All you have knocking around in your brain are sets of prejudices. As my friend above has said you have picked these prejudices up from the predominant bourgeois ideologies in America or in wherever you live.