Saturday, June 21, 2008

Terra Incognita 39 Hope, travel, ALbright and Environmentalism

Terra Incognita
Issue 39
“Written to enlighten, guaranteed to offend”

A Publication of Seth J. Frantzman
Jerusalem, Israel


June 14th, 2008

1) Hope and government: The nomination of Barack Obama is said to be ‘hope’ to the Black community in the U.S. The acceptance of the first Muslim Arab to be a member of a kibbutz in Israel is said to bring ‘hope’ to the Arabs. Blacks in the U.S and Arabs in Israel are once again being led down the sheep trail of dependency, forced to believe that as long as a few wealthy elitists welcome one of them to some club that they are therefore succeeding. Those who wait on the government or others to give them success are doomed to fail, communities that do so are doomed to remain impoverished and forever complaining of their victimization.

2) Who travels sees more? Omar Sharif, the Muslim convert actor, condemned Americans on Egyptian television, calling them ‘ignorant’ and complaining that they don’t travel enough. One wonders what percentage of his audience has ever been out of Egypt? Furthermore one wonders why America, a large country of 300 million, must always be contrasted with small countries such as Denmark in terms of who travels the most. Danes would be hard pressed to spend their whole lives in their thumbnail sized nation. Lastly, Europeans may travel throughout Europe and Saudis may travel to France and the U.K to get prostitutes but this does not constituted ‘opening minds’, traveling does not necessarily mean enrichment.

3) The great hypocrisy: Madeline Albright's post-secretary years: Madeline Albright did nothing to stop the Rwandan genocide. As Secretary of State she encouraged the bombing of half a dozen countries and sat down for tea with the North Korean dictator. Now she is calling on the U.S to invade Myanmar as part of a ‘humanitarian intervention’. One just wonders why she doesn’t seem concerned about Sudan. Madeline Albright is not only a hypocrite, she is a ham-fisted war-monger of the worst type.

4) Environmental fantasy world: The newest ten step program to helping the environment includes steps such as ‘protesting’ and ‘joining activist groups’ and ‘donating money’ and ‘buying green….’ It seems that helping the environment has little to do with the environment and more to do with lining the pockets of spoiled semi-adults who refuse to learn a trade and whose ‘profession’ is ‘manufacturing’ carbon-offsets.

Hope and government
June 12th, 2008
Seth J. Frantzman

On June 5th, 2008 the headline of the New York Times was 'many African-Americans find hope in Obama's breakthrough.' One black person interviewed for the article stated that "we as black people now have hope that we never had…I have new goals for my little girl…she can't give me excuses because she is black." Another black person interviewed for the article noted that "our children need to see a black adult as a leader of the country so they know they can reach for those same goals." In Israel on June 12th a lead article in the Jerusalem Post noted that "first Arab Muslim accepted to Kibbutz." A local author and expert on the Kibbutz movement noted that "it'll certainly give Arabs a feeling that all things are possible." A common thread links these two statements: the notion that success has little to do with the self and almost nothing to do with personal responsibility but that hope and success are derived primarily by the whims of others. In the case of Mr. Obama the hope and success of the blacks is driven by white voters who make up the majority of Obama's supporters. In the case of the Arab woman named Amal Carmiyeh who was accepted to the kibbutz the hope of the Arabs is achieved because Jews accepted an Arab to a village commune. The fact is that the failures or the endless complaining and griping of blacks in the U.S and Arabs in Israel and other minorities elsewhere about why they can't succeed is directly linked to this phenomenon: relying on others, especially the government for that success.

Many immigrant groups in the U.S have been phenomenally successful without ever seeing one of their members attain the highest office, or even regional offices. Jews, Italians, Scots, Germans, Indians (from India) have all succeeded without first having one of their members elected President of the U.S. Rather than waiting for their members to gain a seat in government or be hired by a well known American firm these groups succeeded on their own through their building their own companies and eventually finding that this led them to success in other areas such as politics. They made their own way and found their own niches in America.

In contrast the first Black Senator, Blanche Kelso Bruce, in American history was actually elected in 1875. This would seem to have been a harbinger for hope among Black Americans that they could attain high office just 10 years after the end of the Civil War and 12 years after the freeing of the southern slaves. Yet Bruce's success did not engender success among the Black community at large. African-American history has tended to blame the ending of reconstruction for this setback in black success. But that does not account for the lack of black success outside the south, especially after the great migration of southern blacks to northern cities. In fact what set in among American blacks was a long malaise that eventually culminated in victimized mentality that paints a portrait of failure and racism at every corner and sees only suppression and lack of access everywhere. In attempting to heal the wounds inflicted on the black community and make up for slavery leftist whites have fed blacks an unending line of 'we can help you' (or 'you need our help to succeed') since the 1960s. This has caused blacks to become dependent on the good will of whites, whether it is affirmative action or less obvious ways in which blacks rely on the charity of whites it has given birth to an entire generation of blacks who see their salvation only in the whims of what white leftist elites provide them, whatever crumbs can be pushed off the table to them. Thus the success of a half black African raised by his white mother who describes his ancestors variously as 'white racists' or as 'white liberators of Auschwitz' but never speaks about his black ancestors in Kenya is seen as brining hope to the black community. But the hope of Barack Obama and the chance that very many black Americans can follow in his footsteps is as unrealistic as the other popular occupational dreams of American blacks: becoming a rap star and becoming a basketball player. Thus the American Black community that numbers some 39 million Americans is almost entirely enslaved to dreams that are open to only a few thousand of them. Adding 'American President' as the dream of the average Black child can't possibly be helpful. While seeing a black president may indeed make blacks think 'oh look, someone who looks like a lighter skinned version of me is in charge', the chances that merely having a black president will raise blacks out of poverty is as far fetched as other liberal-leftist dreams for 'helping the black man'.

In a similar vein is the notion that the acceptance of one Arab to one financially failing kibbutz should be a message of hope to Arabs in Israel. The Kibbutz was a Jewish invention: the realization of the communist dream on the local level. But the creation of a kibbutz was never something that only Jews could do. Anyone can create a kibbutz. Arabs in Israel, likes Blacks in the U.S, are constantly being told by leftists that they can only find success at the hands of others and that only someone else can bestow success. Thus the Hebrew University, a Jewish University founded in 1925 can bestow success and hope on the Arabs by promoting an Arab professor. But how ridiculous is this? Here you have Arabs who have lived in the country for generations, many of whome before 1925, who don't have an institution that can promote them so that they can feel successful in their own milieu? They have no measure of success except the success given to them by someone else? This false hope, the reliance on others, is a hallmark of failure. While people think that the promotion of Ms. Carmiyeh and Mr. Obama herald some form of hope in fact the notion that they inspire hope should in fact be chalked up to mass failures on the part of their communities in creating any system of hope from within. People that lack hope from within can never receive hope from others, they only receive a fake hope. This is the hope promised by Mr. Obama to the blacks: the fake hope. How many blacks were inspired when Clarence Thomas became a Supreme Court judge? Almost none. Blacks revile Mr. Thomas. Yet the hope that Mr. Thomas provides to the black community is probably more realistic. Few blacks want to be the next Clarence Thomas and in fact, few blacks will be the next Clarence Thomas just as few blacks ever wanted to follow in the footsteps of Senator Bruce or Thurgood Marshall or Booker T. Washington, or Walter E. Williams, Thomas Sowell, Juan Williams or Ward Connerly.

In one article in The Black Commentator entitled 'Ward Connerly's Crusade to Erase Black People', Mr. Connerly is referred to as a 'whore' who wants to 'erase', 'disappear' and 'ethnically-cleanse' black people from 'official American map' because he supported the Racial Privacy Act which declared that "the state shall not classify any individual by race, color or national origin [for the purposes] of education, public contracting or public employment." Leftists and Black activists couldn’t envision a world in which blacks were not classified properly by the government and thus provided with the proper entitlement. In the end the tragedy is that communities throughout the world will continue to look to government to solve their problems rather than looking to their own hands. The story of Rome's birth from a pitiful city-state to great empire can be traced to 387 B.C when Rome was suddenly sacked by a Gallic army. The Romans, deprived of their city and hiding out in the hills around it, so the story goes, looked to their swords in their right hands and resolved that Rome would not fall again. It would not fall again for 800 years.

Who travels sees more?
Seth J. Frantzman
July 9th, 2008

In 2007 the Association for the Study of Travel in the Near East celebrated its tenth anniversary with the publication of Who Travels Sees More, a collection of essays, art and stories about travelers in the Near East. The books title was apparently taken from an Arab proverb which says "who lives sees much, who travels sees more." Omar Sharif, the Arab-Franco-American actor who was born Michel Dmitri Chalhoub in Alexandria in 1932 and converted to Islam in 1955, may not be aware of this famous proverb nevertheless thinks it is applicable to Americans. In an interview in Arabic on Al-Hayat television on June 7th, 2008 he claimed that "Americans don't understand what is going on in the rest of the world…they are ignorant…only 10 percent of Americans have a passport, in other words 90 percent have never left America…you show them an unmarked map of Europe and ask them where France is and they don't know… they don't know anything." Omar Sharif said all this in the context of complaining about the War in Iraq. He was noting that Democracy is anathema to Arab nations because people prefer to go to the village Sheikh rather than the government for help. "If someone stole from you, you take him to the neighborhood sheik, and you say, 'This man stole from me.' The sheik says to him, 'Return the money, or never come back to the neighborhood." (There was a time when American Italians also used to do this, except they called the man 'godfather' or 'Padrone' not 'sheikh').

Omar Sharif's logic is one that is echoed by many callous people who chose to insult Americans based on this one fact: that Americans are ignorant because they don't travel abroad and thus cannot identify countries on a map. The statistic quoted by Sharif is probably true. But its truth does not necessarily lead to the conclusion that Americans are either ignorant, nor that traveling abroad makes one enlightened or that it is logical that Americans need to travel abroad to broaden their minds.

When juxtaposing the United States' ignorance with another place most people compare it to Europe. They note that all Europeans travel abroad and they compare this fact to the lack of passport holdings in the U.S. However the supposed logic of this argument merely shows up the accuser as to his ignorance. The population of the EU is about 495 million but it is less than half the size of the U.S. If the borders of the EU are increased to take in more countries so that it is the same size as the US than it would include Eastern Europe, Turkey and the Ukraine and Belarus. The claim that Europeans travel more is based mostly on the fact that they all have EU passports and almost all Europeans travels abroad, which is to say they travel in Europe. But for a Belgian to travel to Germany does not make him more 'well traveled' than the average American. While most Americans do not go abroad, most travel within the borders of the U.S. The percentage of Europeans who have actually been outside the confines of Europe and its immediate neighborhood is no higher than the number of Americans who have passports, 30 million or 10%. Europeans believe that traveling within Europe qualifies them for a lack of ignorance but this is nonsense. Most Europeans remain comfortably within the confines of their continent and travel less distances in their lives than most Americans. The only comparison between who goes abroad more should not be the number of passports held by Americans but the number of EU passport holders who have left their continent.

Omar Sharif was speaking to an Arab audience at Al-Hayat. One wonders how many Arabs have ever traveled outside their own country. How many of Sharif's fellow Egyptians have left their country? Yet Mr. Sharif was not drawing a comparison between Arab ignorance and American ignorance. If Mr. Sharif was thinking of the Arabs as a traveling people he must surely have been either thinking of the 7th century Arabs or of modern day Saudis and Gulf Arabs. Yet in terms of ignorance and parochialism there are no people in the world who rival that Saudis for their hypocrisy and extremism. Many Saudi males study abroad in the U.S. Many of them summer in the French Riviera or other top European tourist destinations. They drink alcohol and have sex with numerous women and frequent brothels. But when they return home they put their headdresses and robes back on and become teetotalers. They forbid their women to drive and murder them for harming 'family honor'. Women are not permitted to travel or leave the home without permission. This society is quite well traveled and yet this traveling does not change the mindset or hatreds and extremist culture of its people. Thus it would seem, given the Saudi example, that although people who travel see more they don't become less ignorant. Traveling has not opened the mind of Saudi and made him tolerant, the only thing that has been opened are the legs of hundreds of foreign women and foreign female sex slaves at the European beaches and brothels frequented by the Saudi. His mind has remained firmly shut.

But what of the vaunted culture supposedly gleaned from traveling abroad. Europeans are travelers, at least within their own milieu. Yet what is this European culture that one should be so proud of acquiring if one is to travel. Europeans may very well be able to identify Luxembourg, Poland and Croatia on a map. If they are quite well traveled, which most are not, they might take a stab at finding Lesotho, Brunei and Barbados on a map. But has this culture truly made the European more interesting. To be sure he is not 'ignorant' because he has seen more. But just because he has seen the world does not give him any special insights into it. In my travels I have rarely mat Europeans whose depth of understanding of the world goes beyond his typical observation that "Americans are stupid and ignorant." This is the European mantra. But the European need to define himself against the American only illustrates his apparent weakness, feebleness, insecurity and inferiority complex. The European and the Arab need to insult Americans for their seeming lack of travel only belies their own realization that within their traveling is an emptiness and an inability to appreciate foreign things except superficially. While Europeans glory in their sex tourism in Prague and the brothels full of Moldovan and Ukrainian prostitutes in Milan and London, and perhaps farther afield in Djibouti they realize that their boozing and frequenting of houses of ill repute is not a substitute for traveling and that although they have crossed a border they have not actually expanded their minds.

America is a large country. It is almost identical in size to China. Its people are diverse. Within its borders one can find all the cultures of the world. Ten percent of Americans have traveled abroad. That is a higher percentage than the number of Chinese who have traveled abroad. It is also a higher percentage of travelers than one can find in other large countries such as India, Russia or Brazil. Europeans and Arabs and other arrogant people throughout the world pat themselves on the back and think themselves intelligent for pointing out that 'Americans are ignorant.' But their insult merely shows their ignorance. They are ignorant as to the size of America. They are ignorant as to the size of Europe. They are ignorant as to the amount of travel and foreign experience of their own countrymen. They are substituting their own ignorance and their lack of knowledge by repeating and insult that makes them feel better about themselves. They substitute learning about America or the world by insulting Americans. This insult is often said in a room full of an approving audience such as other Europeans, Arabs, or wealthy Americans. Wealthy Americans who travel enjoy insulting their countrymen the way any wealthy lord of old would poke fun at the stupidity of the peasants. Europeans think that they are being insightful when they receive congratulations on their 'courage' for 'standing up to America' by they insult Americans and call them ignorant. When other Americans sit around with Europeans and insult Americans the European feels even more vindicated; "I knew I was right." I have experienced this myself at school. We had a number of German foreign exchange students who loved to hear themselves say 'Americans are dumb' and enjoyed even more the chorus of American laughter and approval that followed. Americans feel that when they can join a European in insulting other Americans that this means the American has become accepted into the European cultural club of intellectualism. They are saying to themselves "I am special, I am not a dumb American, I am an open minded American and I am proving it because Europeans are taking me into their confidence and saying that my countrymen are dumb but that I am smarter than them." Americans endlessly seek approval from Europeans and other foreigners through this foil. They insult America in order to prove that they are open-minded. I, ignorantly, thought that the critique of America by Americans and Europeans was actually part of a self critique. I felt that Europeans critiqued America when they were in the U.S but that when one traveled to Europe it would be the opposite and Europeans would critique themselves. I was, ignorantly, unaware that this was not the case. It was a shattering experience for me to have to live in Italy in 2002 and experience the true nature of the European. In Italy the European, upon meeting and American, was always quick to point out that 'Americans are dumb.' They were surprised that I, an American, did not agree. They were surprised to learn that their foolish observation did not hold water. But for me it was a truly mind opening experience for I first realized that the insults always being hurled at Americans by foreigners in America were also hurled at Americans abroad and that the foreigner, and especially the Arab and the European, only had insults for America and never had critiques for his own country or culture. Europeans were always quick to speak of American 'racism' but never spoke of their own. Arabs always spoke of 'American religious extremism' but never spoke of their own.

One cannot expect American to stop insulting themselves. The American who travels is not always the most patriotic sort. The American who ingratiates himself with Europeans and Arabs is not always apt to defend his country. He seeks approval. This has been an age old American problem. There have always been Americans who desired the approval of Europeans. America, like a rebellious child, has always had this split personality of desiring to be free of the mores and culture of the 'Old Country' but always desiring secretly the approval of Father Europe. There have always been the Teddy Roosevelts and the Michael Moores, the former who cared not what others thought and the other who shows his documentaries in Europe to wide applause and feels he has 'made it'.

The true mark of European ignorance will always be the European knee-jerk need to insult America in order to build himself up. Truly intelligent and open minded Europeans see America for its diversity and understand that America, as a large nation, cannot possibly expect to have all of its 300 million people be educated, well traveled intellectuals. Simple minded Europeans have only one descriptive word in their vocabulary for the U.S: 'ignorant'. The next time one hears the European utter this ridiculous word one should merely ask the European where he has traveled. The inevitable answer will be "Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Barbados, New York." The inevitable reply should be "So you have not been to Southern Texas where they speak Spanish or Northern Maine where people speak French or perhaps the Navajo reservation where people speak Navajo or perhaps to Yellowstone National park or the Grand Canyon or Yosemite, or Gettysburg national battlefield or the bayou of Louisiana or Hawaii or Alaska or perhaps to Amish country in Pennsylvania or Mormon Utah or Jewish Crown heights or Boston's Italian North End. But you’re an arrogant European. You've never seen my country. You've never seen anything." America has more culture in New York than Europe has in its 10 million square kilometers. New York is only the little finger of the American colossus. Their simply is no comparison. While Americans still have the mentality of the insecure rebellious cousin it turns out that America has grown up and it is Europe that is paltry, pasty, sickly and lacking in vitality. It is Europe that has so little to offer that all it can offer up are insults, like a bully who has been beaten he has no strength left in him but his insults. That is why the sign of intelligent, thoughtful Europeans is that they are not full of insults but rather full of interest, much like Alexis De Tocqueville. The insulting, cursing European, like the Arab and like Omar Sharif only bequeaths his own insecurity, cultural inferiority and lack of substance through his insults. But who can blame Omar Sharif, he has been faking his role as an 'Arab' and a 'Muslim' for half a century. Coincidentally Europe has also been faking her claim to culture for precisely the same amount of time, for there has been little European culture and few new ideas coming out of Europe since its self-immolation in the Holocaust.

The great hypocrisy: Madeline Albright's post-secretary years
June 12th, 2008
Seth J. Frantzman

In April 1994 blood from the Rwandan genocide began to cloud the Akagera river leading to Lake Victoria. At that very same moment Madeline Albright sat in her chair as U.S Ambassador to the United Nations. When asked about whether the Rwandan genocide constituted a 'genocide' and thus required international intervention she and other members of the Clinton administration were clear: there was no genocide in Rwanda. There were 270 UN soldiers stationed in the capital of Rwanda at the time. Their commander, Major General Dallaire warned that a genocide could be prevented with more troops. When 10 of Dallaire's troops were killed by Hutu genocidaires Madeline Albright urged that the rest of the UN troops be removed. (lest any be left behind to document the genocide)

In her role as U.S Secretary of State, which began in 1996 she became an advocate of robust American intervention and UN colonization of chaotic places. While she had minced words during the Rwandan genocide and played semantics with the term 'acts of genocide' so as to keep America out, she now decided that America would be better served if she intervened, via bombing, in numerous countries. Despite the fact that her family had received Serbian hospitality when they lived in Belgrade between 1936 and 1939 when they were fleeing Nazism she branded the Serbs the 'new Nazis' in Europe. She supported bombing campaigns of Serbs in Bosnia and of Serbia over the Kosovo crises and aided in the cleansing of Serbs from Kosovo and the destruction of their churches and property. She enjoyed the label 'liberator' placed on her by the former terrorists in the Kosovo Liberation Army. She supported the bombing of Iraq in operation 'Desert Fox' which achieved nothing. In 2001 she met with the North Korean dictator Kim Jung-Il. She supported the U.S invasion of Haiti in the 1990s and when Cuba shot down two small aircraft piloted by Cuban exiles she claimed it was 'cowardice' on the part of the Cuban government.

If her role as Secretary of State was contradictory her comments since than have smacked only of hypocrisy. In her latest epistle published as an editorial on June 12th, 2008 and entitled 'the End of Intervention' she has decided that the next nation that needs an American invasion and a UN colonization is Myanmar. She complains about the "survival of totalitarian government in an age of global communications and democracy" and claims that "Myanmar's military junta employs the same set of tools used by the likes of Stalin." She condemns the fact that "sovereignty is an inviolable and overriding principle of global law is once again gaining ground." The same woman who as Ambassador to the UN in 1996 complained the sanctions against Iraq supports the sanctions against Myanmar. Albright claims in her editorial that "the international system exists to advance certain core values, including development, justice and respect for human rights." She has, however, condemned the invasion of Iraq in 2003. She notes that it has resulted in a return to isolationist rhetoric in America and laments the fact that "governments in the developing world, are now determined to preserve the principle of sovereignty…the concept of humanitarian intervention has lost momentum."

This was the motto Albright lived by as Secretary of State: 'humanitarian intervention'. But when the land cried out for the intervention in 1994 there was no intervention. There was nothing. There was not one American soldier sent to confront the killers in Rwanda. There was not one American M16 that could be spared to confront the mobs armed with machetes in Kigali. Madeline Albright has built a life on lies. She never recalled having Jewish parents (who converted to Catholicism) until she used the fact that she was Jewish to excuse the American bombing of the Serbs. As a Jew, so the logic went, she had to stand up against the new Hitler in Europe, Slobodan Milosevic. As a Jew she was uniquely able to see genocide and decide who the 'new Nazis' were. But the fog of the hills of Africa obscured her vision for those three months in 1994 when 800,000 were butchered. The view was not so sharp after all.

But now the view is sharp again. Another Stalinist-Nazi-Apartheid regime beckons a bombing. Its not Sudan, where millions have died. Once again Africa confounds the vision. But in the hills of Asia, even with all the debris kicked up by the cyclones and tsunami, there is a nation that needs a 'humanitarian intervention'. There is another East Timor or Haiti or Kosovo waiting for a UN mandate. There are another people who do not have enough brothels to service the foreigners. So we must bring them the brothels and the UN planes and the bombs, to break them and bring democracy and human rights to them. Only when people have been broken can they be built up. With Kosovo, Haiti and East Timor as examples and with plenty of European experts from those places we are sure to succeed in Myanmar.

Albrights rhetoric of lies and hypocrisy is another example of how intervention works. America was duped into intervention in the Balkans because of false screams of 'genocide'. All the while America has ignored the real genocides in Africa. Now we must sharpen our swords again for another assault on some non-Muslim country, some unique Buddhist country that be smashed into pieces. That is, after all, the true reason why Albright will not set her sights on Sudan. Her complaint about the Sudan amounts to; "Sudan has been able to dictate the terms of multinational operations inside Darfur." Is that all? Hasn't it also been able to murder 400,000 people, cause another million to become refugees, and enslave the survivors?

Madeline Albright's hypocrisy-laden hatred of Burma reminds one of Jimmy Carter's newfound hatred for 'Apartheid Israel'. Remember Mr. Carter? He did nothing about the real Apartheid in South Africa. No. But now he has found a new Apartheid regime just as Albright has found a new Stalinist regime (as opposed to the actual Stalinist-modeled regime in North Korea which Albright had no problem visiting and negotiating with).

American officials and bureaucrats and foreign policy gurus would be more believable if they actually did something while in office rather than waiting until leaving office to offer their 'profound' opinions on foreign policy and regime change. There should be a rule. If you can't stop genocide while you have the power don't tell others to stop other genocides later. If you can't stop Apartheid while President don't wait until later to complain about other Apartheids. Keep your mouth shut. Be silent. Let others do the talking. Advise people. Advise candidates. Advice them to learn from your mistakes. But don't lecture us, because you are a hypocrite.

Environmental fantasy world
Seth J. Frantzman
June 8th, 2008

The newest attraction in Australia is the ‘Planet Slayer’ website where the youth can learn about how to save the planet, how much of a carbon ‘hog’ they are, when they deserve to die for having used their ‘share’ of the planet and all sorts of other important information about the environment. The website defines 8 threats to the planet that are leading to its destruction: logging, fossil fuels, nuclear waste, salination (it chokes rivers apparently), consumerism, introduced species, war and toxic chemicals. There are 8 things that are good for the earth as well: clean-up programs, composting, protesting, solar power, clean transport, participation, recycling and wind power.

The website offers other pieces of advice. What are the five most important things one can do to reduce their ‘greenhouse impact’? They can go to ‘environmentally sound lenders’ for their mortgages. They can buy ‘Greenpower’ from the electricity company which means they will receive electricity from wind, solar and hydroelectric plants. They can join ‘Greenfleet’, an organization that “plants enough trees to cover our CO2 output from driving for a whole year for the price of only one tank of petrol.” People can ‘waste less’ and ‘buy less crap.’ In addition they put their waste into a compost or ‘worm farm.’ It turns out, according to the website, that we should purchase a new ‘energy efficient’ car as soon as possible because the ‘energy to make a new car was compensated by fuel efficiencies within 4 years.’ It turns out that using a wood stove or ‘open fire’ to heat oneself or one’s house is unacceptable because “as well as their greenhouse excesses, they produce a heap of other pollutants.” The website does try to answer the age old question “if I follow a recycling truck why do I see it going to the dump” with the answer “it only takes one coffee cup handle in a tonne of glass to contaminate it beyond use” and therefore recycling trucks unable to sort the glass from the other recycled material simply must dump it all at the dump. It also turns out that if the recycler bags his recyclables in a plastic bag that this too contaminates them and they must be dumped rather than recycled.(an odd contradiction if one is throwing away glass and coffee mugs because only a plastic bag would seemingly separate the two). The website informs us that in order to counteract the 24.5 tonnes of CO2 we produce we would need to plant 91 trees a year.

The game ‘find out when you should die’ gives real life examples of how much things you do contributes to your carbon footprint. Ideally one should drive a fuel efficient car or ride bycicles, fly rarely, live in an apartment, live with more than 4 people, have low energy bills, receive energy from a renewable source, use a compost, recycle, never eat meat, spend lots of money on ‘ethical investments’ such as businesses and organizations that make ‘environmentally responsible products’ or spend no money at all. If we do these things we are using our ‘fair share’ of the planet and deserve to live a full life.

The ideal life of this environmental fantasy must be quite extraordinary. It envisions people living in cities, in apartments with four other people, riding bycicles or buses to work, never traveling, eating organic food, participating in dozens of causes, protesting as often as possible, not using nuclear energy and using wind energy. This ideal world would look something like Japan with every crammed into cities, living in camped compartments and walking in lock step with the latest ‘energy efficient’ devise, always purchasing the latest energy efficient car and buying the necessary ‘carbon offsets’ from some company while refinancing with the latest ‘responsible’ mortgage company and only shopping at the latest ‘organic food’ store. This ideal human doesn’t work because most work causes pollution and so does commuting. This ideal human also seems to have an inexhaustible supply of funds to pay for all the latest energy efficient things he needs to buy while making sure not to buy the ‘crap’ that the latest environmentalist website warns against.

In truth the environmental carbon footprint fascism merely describes the lifestyle of the ultra-rich elite who are able to afford all these things. The same wealthy leftists who complain about the environmental destruction being wrought in China fail to provide a solution to how poor or even second-world countries can provide for their people. While the West was permitted over a hundred years of technological progress in order to get to its present energy-efficient carbon-neutral state the rest of the world is either expected to catch up overnight to live in some sort of pre-modern ‘native American’ world without electricity and apparently without open fires.

The energy efficient nonsense is almost too much to bear and its hypocrisy is endless. While it complains about nuclear power plants, which actually produce no emissions and don’t harm the environment, it also refuses to allow wind farms to be built anywhere. The places with the most wealthy environmentalists are also, coincidentally, the places where wind farms are not allowed and ‘wind turbines’ as liberal refer to windmills are forbidden lest they ruin the view of the leftist or ‘harm the birds’. When people wanted to place wind generating, environmentally friendly, wind farms in Nantucket sound it was no surprise who opposed it: leftists, rich leftists and very rich environmentalists. The present love for wind power is merely a myth and is primarily something people like to look at pictures of. Any attempts to actually build the giant wind farms needed to power the world’s cities has been met by protests by the very groups that tell everyone they should be using wind power.

The most fascinating result of the modern eco-friendly fantasy is that native-Americans are now decidedly not the ideal. Their open fires are a big ‘no-no’ in the new environmentalist fantasy which hates the idea of fires because they supposedly pollute. The new fad of ‘organic food’ is also a massive scam. There can’t logically be enough organic food for everyone to eat. Thus the only people that can afford it are the wealthy, the same people who receive huge paychecks for ‘environmental advising’ and for running the numerous ‘non-profits’ which now churn out the latest environmental nonsense such as ‘carbon offsets’. The organic food craze is primarily a craze of one class, the environmentally friendly class, which can afford the over-priced ‘organic food’, most of which isn’t any more ‘organic’ than the average food. The myth of the ‘corner grocery’ and its ‘local farm’ is what propels the obsession with ‘organic food’. But logically given the economy of scale behind ‘organic’ stores such as Whole Foods there can’t be enough ‘small town farmers’ to produce that much standardized food. Carbon offsets are another part of this scam as are all the tree planting non-profits. People seriously believe that for the cost of a ‘tank of petrol’ that they can have trees planted to offset their existence. But no trees are planted. The only thing being planted is large amounts of money in the bank accounts of rich environmentalists who can then spend it at ‘organic’ food markets so other rich environmentalists can purchase their necessary ‘carbon offset’ for their next flight to some exclusive resort, which no doubt is ‘eco-friendly’.

The environmental craze is one massive scam. Form the ‘eco-village’ to the ‘organic food’ counter it is all part of one massive fraud perpetrated on the consumer who more and more resembles a certain class of people who are able to afford these luxury goods. The only thing positive to come out of this is the fact that we know it is a scam. Its not just the lack of recycling and the fact that the recycling bin is dumped at the dump. It’s the fact that a few million wealthy leftists spending their parents trust money can’t possibly make up for all the gas guzzling and destruction affects of China and India and other developing countries. In fact their efforts to save the planet over an entire year to counteract the waste being produced in the Arab playboy city of Dubai where the cousins of the environmental class live it up with their eastern European sex-slaves and their indoor downhill skiing.

Terra Incognita 40 Crusades, NGOs, Feminism

Terra Incognita
Issue 40
“Written to enlighten, guaranteed to offend”

A Publication of Seth J. Frantzman
Jerusalem, Israel


June 21st, 2008

1) The Crusades: a Reappraisal: The Crusades are hardly the precursor to European imperialism, the genocidal, racist greedy assault that they are portrayed to be. In reality most Crusades were a complete failure and the actual European colonialism that began in the 16th century learned from the Crusades by doing the exact opposite and not committing the same mistakes that the crusaders had made. Almost none of the accepted wisdom about the Crusades proves correct when one understands their context or their history.

2) Tom Kenis: Life of the new imperialism and how it can be stopped: Tom Kenis is leaving Ramallah for Belgium. He has worked at a Belgian NGO for a few years and now he is packing up to return home. Judging from his blog and his reports it has all been good fun for him. But has it been good fun for the colonized? For those people forced to endure his presence? He was merely a cog in the great wheel of the modern NGO-imperialism. But it is these cogs that every country must oppose with every ounce of their strength, for no country deserves to have these NGOs feasting on them as a vulture feasts on a corpse.

3) Feminism’s other legacy: How can we understand that some of the most popular television shows for female audiences in the West are shows portraying women either as call girls, drug dealers, engaging in polygamy or competing to be as nude as possible so as to be the next ‘top model’? This is the other legacy of feminism. It offers women two options: prostitution of Islam. This is the western legacy and it is a secular legacy of tragedy.

The Crusades: a Reappraisal
June 17th, 2008
Seth J. Frantzman

In 1972 Joshua Prawer published The Crusader's Kingdom: European Colonialism in the Middle Ages (also published as The Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem: European Colonialism in the Middle Ages). This view of the Crusaders as precursors to European colonialism has come to be the norm. Theories have been lumped on top of it to explain other aspects of the Crusades. One views the role of the Crusades as essentially a plot by the Pope to secure more power through the church by wielding armies and placing himself above the lords of Europe by being able to order their knights to a Holy War in a far off land. Another views the Crusades as essentially a capitalist conspiracy by greedy knights and lords who traveled a thousand miles in order to gain 'holy' artifacts that they could then sell back in Europe. Yet another theory views the crusades as a crucible, a sort of state conspiracy, in the founding of modern Europe and her nation-states. This view states that "Europe's comparable backwardness vis-à-vis Islamic, Byzantine, Indian and Chinese civilizations" forced Europeans to embark on the Crusades so that local lords could consolidate power at home, centralize authority and be rid, perhaps, of roving bands of meddlesome knights. This last theory is usually synthesized with the first one so that historians make states such as "Crusades and European 'discoveries' in the New World are essentially imperial projects intertwined with Europe's transformation." A final view of the Crusades sees it as a way for Europe to adopt a shared "European-Christian" identity and create a "Muslim Other" through warfare (a bibliography of these views can be found here,

These theories all contribute, in some complicated fashion that cannot be easily rendered into English, into a model that not only claims that the "Free trade myth" of Europe's rise to power is debunked but that the "Discovery of America was not a scientific feat, but the result of Ottoman blockage of the trade routes to the east."(although the Ottoman empire's true rise to power did not occur until the late 15 and early 16th century and Columbus sailed in 1492 this doesn't seem to harm this thesis). Furthermore the synthesis notes that the "Europeans were the orients 'barbarians'. Inferior in civilizational and economic terms hence their recurrent resort to military force." This brilliant thesis concludes that there would have been 'no Charlemagne without Mohammed' and 'no Columbus without the Ottomans.' All these theories were best presented, as historical fact, in a documentary by Terry Jones that appeared on the BBC in 1995 entitled 'The Crusades' (The fact that Jones first directed Monty Python did not detract from the widespread belief that his documentary was accurate).

Scholars and popular culture have not been without their challenges to this, now mainstream, viewpoint. William Urban, who ironically shares a his name with the Pope who ordered the Crusades, a Professor of history at Monmouth college wrote an excellent essay in 1998 entitled 'Re-thinking the Crusades' ( In 2001 this was followed by Thomas Madden's article in National Review entitled 'Crusade Propaganda' in which he noted that the "Crusades are quite possibly the most misunderstood event in European history." This was followed by the publication, in 2005, of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam and the Crusades.

The Crusades occurred in a period that saw increasing harshness and extremism on both sides of the Mediterranean. In 1009 Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah, the Sixth Fatamid Caliph of Egypt, destroyed the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. He forbade women to leave their houses and forbade the making of women's shoes. He forbade the display of the Christian cross and then ordered all Christian subjects of his empire to wear giant crosses a meter long around their necks. Jews were ordered to wear black hats or turbans so they could be distinguished and discriminated against (they distinguish themselves to this day in this manner in the Orthodox world although there is no connection). The Almohad Empire, which was established in North Africa in 1121 and in Spain in 1147 was renowned for its expulsion of Jews and Christians from its domains, including the family of the renowned Jewish theologian Maimonides who were given the choice of conversion to Islam or death.

In 1071 at the battle of Manzikert the Byzantine army was eradicated and Byzantium lost almost all her lands in Asia Minor to the Seljuk Turks. In 1095 Alexius I, the Byzantine emperor, sent a mission to the Pope of the Catholics in Rome requesting aid for his Orthodox Christian Kingdom, whose life was imperiled by the Turkish threat. In the same year Pope Urban II gathered together his bishops and told them among other things that "This land is too narrow…Hence it is that you murder one another, that you wage war, and that frequently you perish by mutual wounds. Let therefore hatred depart from among you, let your quarrels end, let wars cease, and let all dissensions and controversies slumber. Enter upon the road to the Holy Sepulchre; wrest that land from the wicked race, and subject it to yourselves." In 1096 a man named Peter the Hermit gathered together a rabble in Cologne and began the march to the Holy Land. At Nis in modern day Serbia some 10,000 of his army of peasants and lowly knights were butchered by locals. After being ferried across to Asia Minor by the Byzantines his 'army' which now numbered some 30,000 was completely massacred by the Turks. Meanwhile in the Rhine valley another mob of German Crusaders under the command of a Rhineland Count named Emicho forcibly converted, extorted and took money from the Jewish communities of Mainz, Worms and others before massacring a number of them. Later this same group of Crusaders met their deaths at the hands of Hungarians after they had pillaged the countryside in search of food and loot. Such was the inauspicious beginning of the Crusades.

Despite these beginnings a more organized Crusader army under well-known nobles such as Godfrey De Bouillon, Robert II of Flanders and the count of Blois set out with 35,000 knights in the late fall of 1096. In the spring and summer of 1097, with the aid of a Byzantine army, the Crusaders smashed their way through Turkish defenses and armies in Asia Minor, reaching the Armenian country of Edessa in modern day Western Turkey, in 1098. On June 2nd the city of Antioch fell to the Crusaders after an 8 month siege. The Crusaders swept down the Coast, having secured the Lebanon, captured Jaffa, Ramle and Bethlehem before laying siege to Jerusalem, which fell on July 15th, 1099. It was at this point that the Crusaders committed the other massacre for which they are remembered, killing most of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, both Muslims and Jews.

In 1101 more knights took ship and horse for the Holy Land but this Crusade proved a complete failure. The Second Crusade was launched in 1147 led by King Conrad III of Germany and King Louis VII of France accomplished nothing except a failed assault on Damascus. It was more successful in Portugal where it wrested Lisbon from the Muslims. The same Crusade attempted to convert a nation called the 'Wends' or West Slavs but was unsuccessful. In 1187 after Saladin had captured Jerusalem a Third Crusade was launched under Richard the Lionhearted of England, Phillip II of France and Fredrick I 'Barbaroosa' of Germany. Fredrick died on his way to the Holy Land while Richard became legendary for his exploits. In 1204 the Fourth Crusade 'succeeded' in sacking Byzantium and resulted in the slaughter of Eastern Christians in that city. In 1209 the Albigensian Crusade 'succeeded' in exterminating the Cathar heretics of southern France of whome some 200,000 to a million were killed. The Fifth Crusade of 1217 was launched against Egypt but failed to take Cairo (although it did take the coastal town of Damietta). The Sixth Crusade was led by Fredrick II of Germany who had been excommunicated by the Pope. Nevertheless his brilliance on the battlefield resulted in the re-capture of Jerusalem in 1229. In 1244 Jerusalem fell once again to a Muslim force from Egypt and in the same year a Crusader army allied with the Muslim Emir of Homs and thousands of hired Bedouin to strike a blow at the Egyptian Ayyubid Sultanate led by Baybars. The Christian-Muslim army was destroyed by the Egyptians at the battle of La Forbie. In alliance with the Mongols in 1260 the Crusaders hoped that these pagan Asian tribesmen might be their answer to the Muslim reconquest of the Holy Land. This came to naught when the Mongol army was destroyed by Baybars' slave army of Mamlukes at Ain Jalut.

Crusading did not stop with the loss of the Holy Land. A Crusade was launched against a recalcitrant group of Frisian Catholics known as Stedingers in 1232 which 'succeeded' in subjugating this group to the authority of a local lord. Ten years later Crusaders attempted to invade and convert Orthodox Russia only to be defeated. Two 'Shepherds Crusades' in Northern France were led by peasants against Jews, noblemen and lepers in 1251 and 1320. The rabble had to be put down by the local nobility. In 1284 the Pope declared a Crusade against Aragon, even thought Aragon was Catholic it had insulted the Pope by invading Sicily (which Aragon had invaded to help the locals against the French, a well known story called the 'Sicilian Vespers'). In 1398 a Lithuanian army proclaimed a 'Crusade against the Tatars', Mongols who had converted to Islam and were ravaging the Ukraine. The Crusade was completely defeated. The Crusade of Varna in 1443 was launched by the Hungarian king against the Ottoman empire and it was defeated with the loss of 10,000 men and the Hungarian king in 1444. In 1420 a Crusade was launched against the Hussites, a European heretical sect that was a precursor of the Reformation in Bohemia. Crusades continued into the 18th century, including the Crusade of Lepanto and Candia (in Crete), both of which were directed against the Ottomans.
The Knights Hospitaller were formed in 1113 in Jerusalem, eventually fleeing to Cyprus, Rhodes and Malta after the fall of the Latin Kingdom. These Knights of Malta were finally defeated by Napoleon, thus putting an end to the last Crusading order (although the order of Malta still exists in a variety of forms).

When one reads a history of the Crusades and examines the total number of Crusades they would be hard pressed to think that Crusading was either a successful venture, a prosperous one or one that could possibly have been a precursor to anything but failure. The depredations of the Crusaders, rather than being systematic, usually involved mobs of peasants. In contrast to their Muslim enemies the Crusader 'brutality' was neither exceptional nor particularly harsh. One must recall, for instance, that of the 140,000 Christians who resided in the Holy Land before Saladin and Baybars, most became slaves or were themselves massacred by the Muslim 'reconquista'. One doesn't need to apologize for the Crusades or excuse them, for it was the Crusaders themselves who almost all went to their deaths in futile or half-baked expeditions. If the Crusaders accomplished one thing it was to create a perpetual war making machine that put Europe's enemies off guard for hundreds of years, perhaps slowing the Muslim conquest in Spain, the Ukraine and Eastern Europe, and eventually allowing Europe the breathing space to put her house in order to face the threat. Rather than being a precursor to colonialism the Crusades marked, in fact, the beginning of the rise of the Ottomans and in Spain the Crusades were no different in their intention at reconquest than Saladin's intentions in the Holy Land: both were directed at getting something back rather than taking new land. There was simply no connection between Columbus's sailing in 1492 and the Crusades except for the fact that the reconquest of Spain and Portugal during the Crusades made the expedition possible. The methods of the Spanish conquistadors in the new World did not resemble the Crusader's ways in the Holy Land. The Spanish in the New World created a massive brood of children with local women, massacred the natives to a great extent, enslaved others and converted the rest. In contrast, the Crusaders in the Holy Land rarely, if ever, had children with Muslim women, used a minimum of slaves and killed few of the local Muslim peasants. If the Conquistadors learned something from the Crusaders they learned how not to run a new dominion, all the successful things the Conquistadors did were the direct opposite of Crusader actions. In the Holy Land the Crusaders built forts wherever they could and feared the open country. In contrast the Spanish in the New World very quickly became masters of the country and felt no need to shelter behind forts, such was the power they projected.

One interesting myth of the Crusades is the supposed hatred of local Christians for the Crusaders. This myth encapsulates not only the Copts but also Christians in Crete and in the Holy Land. Every modern historian repeats the myth that the local Syriac and Eastern Christians 'welcomed' Saladin. This story is one that was circulated by Muslim sultans among their Christian subjects with the idea of propagandizing the local Christians to support their efforts against the Crusaders. The Muslims feared rebellion by the local Christians and given the treatment of the Christians in Egypt by Hakim one can understand why. So Muslim rulers created a narrative for their local Christians that claimed the local Christians opposed the Crusaders. There is no contemporary evidence from the 12-13th century of local Christians supporting the Muslims against the Crusaders (except as when they were enslaved and forced to do so). Today's eastern Christians claim they opposed the Crusades because they do not want to be connected with the 'Crusaders' who are always accused of conspiring against Islam. Thus the local Christians of Egypt or the West Bank or Iraq created a narrative of nationalism which claims they fought the Crusaders alongside their Arab 'brothers', but this is modern narrative was created and grafted onto history. Given the fact that most of the local Christians were enslaved, their churches burned and mosques built atop them by the Muslims who fought the Crusaders there is simply no possible way the Christians could have supported the Muslims. In some instances, such as in Crete, the local Greek Christians opposed the conquest of their island by Catholic Christians, such as the Venetians, and they 'welcomed' the Ottomans not because they supported them but because they saw them as a lesser of two evils. Cretan resistance to Ottoman rule was famous throughout Europe and such resistance never stopped from the very first landing to the final expulsion. Such resistance is not evidence of 'welcoming' but of a desire for independence, from Venetian or Ottoman rule, from Catholic or Muslim rule. There is no doubt the massacre of Greeks by the Crusaders in Constantinople in 1204 left a lasting impression but it was hardly one that meant the Greeks preferred Muslim rule, a rule that made them slaves more often than it made them free and saw their women taken into the harems of the local sultans. They preferred independence and hated the Catholics for what they saw as a stab in the back.

What is most fascinating about the Crusades is the degree to which they were sent against fellow Christians and the fact that in a few instances Muslims allied themselves with the Crusaders. These facts also run contrary to any of the post 1970 'theories' about the Crusades.

The greatest new myth about the Crusades is the decision by European, Muslim and Western historians to draw parallels with the modern state of Israel. Meron Benvenisti was one of the first westerners, and an Israeli Jew as well, to draw this parallel. In his book about the Crusades he speaks about the 'Conquerors and the conquered' and the 'indigenous' people. For Benvenisti the Crusaders are 'like' the Israelis because they were a conquering minority and they built citadels in similar places as modern day Israeli settlements such as at Tekoa or Maale Adumim (he does not mention that these places had Jewish residents long before the Crusaders arrived). He describes the fort of Belvoir as the 'best preserved Crusader fort in Palestine' despite the fact that administratively it is actually in Israel (by contrast Benvenisti does not use the old name for Turkey or Jordan). Ironically Benvenisti in his book Crusaders in the Holy Land, published in 1976, describes the Jews as part of the 'indigenous' population. Today's Jews however are seen by him as an invading foreign force. Benvenisti presented a paper on the subject entitled 'Crusaders and Zionists' at the Van Leer institute in 1989 in Jerusalem and wrote 'Longings for the Crusaders' in Haaretz in 1999. In 2006 David Ohana summed up he arguments in 'Are Israelis the new Crusaders?' in the Palestine-Israel Journal Vol. 13, No. 5 in 2006. The 'evidence' that Zionism is the new Crusader ideology is clear from the fact that among 82 studies of the Crusaders published in 1982, a total of 14 were written by Israelis (it couldn't be because Israelis live closest to the source material?). Benvenisiti claims that the Israelis 'long for the Crusaders' and that Israeli archeologists emphasize the Crusader heritage of the land as a way of obscuring the 1400 years of Arab rule (the fact that the Crusaders built more forts and walls in 160 years of rule than the Muslims did in 1400 years couldn't have any impact on this fact?).

The final story of the Crusades should be separated into two parts. The Conquest of the Holy Land was very much a Christian attempt as reconquest in the face of Muslim assaults on Christian Holy Places. Its success was no different than the Muslim success at the conquest of Spain in the 8th century, both were unexpected achievements and both resulted in a lasting presence and migration to the new country. The defeat of both stemmed from similar facts: a local population that was no assimilated and feuding of the feudal lords sent to rule the new country. The Jihad in Spain and the Crusade in the Holy Land were remarkably similar, even in their sometimes harsh treatment of Jews. The fact that the Europeans can be viewed as 'barbarians' assaulting 'civilized' Islam should best be seen in the same light in Spain where the invasion of Islam also represented an invasion of 'barbarians'. The irony here of course is that the European Crusaders are both seen as 'barbarians' and as precursors of European colonialism and thus modern Europe. In contrast the Muslim invasion of Spain is seen in historiography as bringing a 'golden age' and not serving as a precursor to Muslim imperialism elsewhere (such as in India). The Crusaders may have dreamed of loot but few of them ever attained it, given the fact that 90% of them died on the way or in battle. The Crusades outside the Holy Land should be seen in a different light than the establishment of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem. These Crusades were almost entirely failures except for the fact that they did help unify Europe (for instance France and Spain) and spread European-Christian civilization to the pagan peoples of Scandanavia, the Baltic and the East. What is most fascinating about the Crusades is that they stopped and that Holy War stopped being a method of war among Christian states. In contrast Islam has never stopped its Crusading ethos which to this day haunts all the people forced to live next to Muslims, from Dinkas in Southern Sudan to Hindus in Kashmir, Buddhists in Southern Thailand, Serbs in Kosovo, Russians in Chechnya, Jews in Israel and Bahais in Iran. The frequent decision by solitary Muslims to join the Jihad, either abroad by journeying from Saudi to Bosnia for instance, or at home in Egypt by stabbing a local Copt for no reason, is startlingly common. To accept this Islamic Crusading mentality as the 'spontaneous' actions of mobs, such as the assault on Europeans and priests after the Pope's comments or the publication of the Mohammed cartoons, is to accept the actions of Peter the Hermit and the Shepherd's Crusaders which were 'spontaneous' assaults on Jews caused by the spread of the message of the Crusading Jihad to local people who had no means to embark on the Jihad. Since the Westerner is apt to condemn the entire enterprise of Crusading based on the savage 'outbursts' of some Christian peasants might well make them think twice about why similar 'outbursts' by Muslims are always seen as mere 'spontaneous outburts' rather than indicative of the entire Muslim religion. A more nuanced and equal approach would be more welcome, one that condemns the Crusading nature of Islam and gives a less convoluted theory burdened history of the Crusades which can condemn the knights for their immoral actions but accept their other actions.

Tom Kenis: Life of the new imperialism and how it can be stopped
Seth J.Frantzman
June 18th, 2008

“They were young men recruited in London, mainly from the public schools and older universities, and sent out to rule over vast areas of bush, forest, plain and desert…as best they could. After a short apprenticeship as a cadet they were sent as assistants to a district commissioner who, perhaps himself not much above thirty, might have a region as large as half of England under his care. In Africa they went to a station known as the Boma, where there might also be a policeman, possible a Public Works Engineer or a Veterinary Officer if it was large enough, but very often just the D.C. They would spend, in those days more than half their time on safari, camping by African villages, and learning how the people lived and thought and acted, their languages, their needs. The villagers did not resent their presence in those bygone days. Quire the contrary. As a rule they accepted these white men cheerfully…as a kind of natural phenomenon from another world, and possessors of immensely potent forms of magic.”
Such is the description of the life of the young imperialist found in the delightful book Twilight on the Zambezi: Late Colonialism in Central Africa by Eudenia W. Herbert. This was a shoestring empire populated by young men of ambition and idealism. This was soft colonialism. Gone were the days of hacking off limbs to find gold. When Woodrow Wilson sent the American doughboys, including my illustrious ancestors, overseas to fight the Germans he did so under the banner of democracy and self-determination. He promised that the U.S would not enter a European conflict merely to preserve empire. But preserve empire the war did. In 1940 FDR send the Greatest Generation overseas once again to fight in another European war. He spoke bluntly to Churchill, assuring the obese bulldog that America intended to fight to save the world from Nazi and Japanese barbarism, but not to preserve the British empire. This time the Americans got it right. The British empire collapsed in 1948 and by 1960 almost all its colonies were going their own way. The young white men came home. To their surprise the life would no longer be easy. There would be jobs awaiting them. The Europeans who had the bad luck to be born into this postwar world had a hardscrabble existence, rebuilding the continent they themselves had wrecked. They enjoyed at all times the help of the United States in this endeavor through the Marshall plan and through NATO. They became middle class and they instituted the welfare state.

But the European generation born between 1975 and 1990 is a very different generation. It had no memories of the war. It had memories of plenty. It became European. It enjoyed a lifestyle that was entirely supported by the government. From the ‘cradle to the grave’. Its college was free and it was encouraged to study forever. Because certan sections of society need to work they spent most of their time traveling, backpacking, boozing, whoring, and hanging out in coffee houses. When they reached the age of 27 they decided that they should find some sort of employment. For this generation of Europeans, from the ‘right’ background and from a certain class, there emerged the European NGO and the European UN and the European Red Cross. These ‘non-profit’ organizations offered a way for Europeans to receive ‘employment’ and continue their lifestyle. These organizations were, for the most part, entirely funded by either government funds or American donors. The European entered work for an NGO and soon he was posted overseas. After a short apprenticeship they were posted to some region and given the responsibility for some nebulous task that included the prevue to watch over regions the size of England, the size of their home country. They walked with a swagger. They did not have to obey the local laws of the countries they were posted to. They received an SUV for their work. They were housed in special compounds or in rooms in the wealthiest parts of town. Once on location they frequented the same bars and the same brothels.
Tom Kenis is one of them. At the age of 27 he was posted to Ramallah in the West Bank to work for an NGO. Kenis was born in the Belgian town of Neerglabbeek. His family were patricians from Antwerp and his great-grandfather owned an inn. His grandfather fought in the resistance against the Nazis. He was a ‘liberal democrat’ voter in Belgium. After studying at Univerty in ‘International relations and Middle Eastern Studies’ he was cut out for ‘work’ in an NGO. He was happy to be posted to Ramallah for he could oppose the ‘occupation’. As he noted “dislike for occupation runs in the family.” His dreams were not clear to him. ‘Published author?’ While in Ramallah he did no actual work and spent most of his time drinking at the local bars and going enjoying the outdoors. One might say he spent most of his time on safari, learning about the locals. In January of 2007 he was profiled and interviewed by the BBC as part of their ‘Palestinian voices’ section. He was not religious in any way. His time was spent on “an empty hill dotted with stubborn shrubbery between the last Palestinian houses and an Israeli army base is our playground.” His greatest concern was “Be sure to bring enough ice to keep your Taybehs [beer] cold.” He readily admits “My life in Palestine was not the life of Palestinians.” He was proud of his fellow Europeans, noting “we stopped the Bosnians from butchering each other, am I wrong? And yes, they'd still be at it if no one had stepped in and went "What, are you nuts?" His philosophy was summed up as “Use your noodle for more than hunting and gathering. We need a new paradigm here… Fighting's old. God is dead. This is the Age of Aquarius.” When his posting to Palestine came to an end in June of 2008 he noted “I loved it here. I spent a full tenth of my young life here.”
Kenis doesn’t realize it but he is representative of a generation of Europeans. Eudenia Herbert was wrong. There was no twilight of empire. The empire of the Europeans has continued. It has reinvented itself. Some Europeans, it turns out, are simply not cut out for work. Some Europeans simply cannot do work. Their lifestyle is that of the world and their life is that of travel and fun and endless partying and critiquing others. Imagine this life. Imagine the life where one’s destiny is to work for an NGO and go to some other country and ‘fix the problems’ of that country whether the other country wants to be flooded with Europeans or not. The world has no choice in the matter. The world cannot choose to not have these NGO-Europeans. The world tried very hard to get rid of them. In Africa the natives turned on the native commissioners. But it was to no avail. The commissioners have returned. Today’s commissioner drives his SUV and sips his latte.

How can the world be rid of this imperialism? Can the world ever not suffer this arrogance, this incredible sight of the European enjoying himself upon the miseries of others, making fun of the real everyday life of hardship that faces most of the world? Can the world ever be rid of it? Can the world ever be rid of arrogance and the bourgouise behavior of people who never hold jobs in their lives? I’ve known dozens of them. They are all the same. Their life consists of the Red Cross and the UN. Their life consists of wealth and sipping tea and critiquing things and making fun of things. It is a life that, had it been earned through work or if it were carried out in the home country of these people, would be completely acceptable. No one can argue with a person’s right to enjoy their lives in their own country. No one can argue with a man driving an SUV in his own country. But one can struggle against the man who leaves his country and works for a nebulous ‘international organization’ and is posted to another country to tell that country how to live.

Americans struggled against this for a long time. When Africans had never seen the white man the American was fighting the imperialist at Bunker Hill. When the imperialist was thrown out of Haiti it was the American who was first to recognize the second free nation in the western hemisphere. When the European imperialist was weakened by an endless insurgency in Cuba it was the American who liberated the island. In 1903 when the Kishinev pogroms broke out against Jews in Russia cartoons shows Teddy Roosevelt condemning the pompous feudal Tsar. In 1956 when Britain and France bombed Egypt John Foster Dulles said "it is a great tragedy that when the world stands shocked at Soviet Brutality in Hungary the world should also be confronted by similar actions on the part of the British and French." Unlike Africa the European has not returned to the United States. His NGOs do not colonize our cities and his Red Cross and UN does not park where it pleases throughout our land. But the rest of the world is forced to shoulder the burden. The rest of the world is forced into slavery through the endless drive of the NGO-European and his smug expressions, his ‘this is good fun’ mentality while playing at genocide and war. To see the face of the NGO-employed- European is to see the face of luxury and the face of impotence. The peoples of the world must wake up and realize they do not deserve this face dominating them. From Africa to Israel to Thailand to Serbia the people must realize that the NGO-European has no rights to the world. The NGO employee is no different than any person. The NGO belongs in Europe. That is its home. If it wants to critique something he should critique its home and its injustice. If it wants to help the poor it should do it at home. That is the natural order of things. Kenis belongs in Europe. His smug face, his expression, his attitude, all of it belong in Europe. No one deserves to be shackled with it.

But we are shackled. The essence of the modern imperialism is the statement by Mr. Kenis that ‘fighting occupation runs in the family.’ He believes that he has a right to fight what he considers injustice anywhere in the world. Unlike his ancestors, who fought occupation in their own country, he believes he has a right to police the world. But when his self-appointed role as policeman goes wrong he can go back home to Europe while the natives must live with his mistakes and abuses. In his blog about Ramallah Kenis boasts “I’m going back to Belgium.” When Dutch peacekeepers working for the UN failed to intervene in Srebrenica they were able to leave without risk of prosecution. They had, of course, promised that they were creating a ‘safe haven’ in Bosnia, but when things didn’t go their way they went back home to Europe. In 2008 Bosnians tried to sue the UN and the Dutch government for not living up to its responsibility to protect them. The UN refused to take part in the case, claiming immunity. Bert-Jan Houtzagers, a Dutch attorney for the government said the UN must be allowed to operate without facing the threat of prosecution. In the Congo, Haiti, Southern Sudan and Cote De’Ivoire UN workers have raped hundreds, if not thousands of women and children. Of 250 boys and girls interviewed by an investigator, who were supposed to be under the care of the UN, more than half said they knew of cases where they or friends had been raped. Some victims were as young as six and included girls and boys. In 2003 Nepalese UN troops went on a rape rampage in the Congo, gang raping dozens of children in just one instance. But the UN is immune. When the UN or a European, comes to a village he may rape and murder at will and he is immune. He may commit as many Abu Ghraibs without any chance of being held responsible.

When there is immunity there is colonialism. When there is colonialism there must be resistance. When the courts cannot provide recompense and justice than man must resist. He has a solemn duty before god to resist. Americans learned this lesson in 1775. Patrick Henry intoned this lesson in his famous statement ‘give me liberty or give me death’ and the statement is echoed in the motto of New Hampshire; ‘live free or die.’ Americans understood all too well the impunity of the imperialist after British troops were forcibly lodged in the houses of American citizens. America rose to rebellion to remove the stain of imperialism from her breast. But imperialism does not die an easy death. Arrogance does not go away easily. Bullies do not go away until they are beaten. Europe slinked away from Africa and its colonies between 1945 and 1975. In few cases was it thrown out of them. Because of this it has returned with a vengeance. It has reinvented its imperialism through its UN and its Red Cross and Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch and all the millions of NGOs that infest the world, like raptors praying on the carcasses of once proud and independent states. It feasts on Serbia and Israel and East Timor and Haiti. Haiti which was the second nation to gain independence in the Americas is today a slave of the UN. Serbia, a nation that resisted the Ottomans and the Nazis has been crushed under the heel of NATO, the UN and the EU. Israel, a nation of Jews who survived the European Holocaust and the Crusades and the Inquisition is feasted upon by legions of NGO vultures and the UN vehicles that line the streets of the Holy City. East Timor, which resisted the Indonesian Muslim juggernaught for 40 years is but a cesspool for the UN and its allies. How can such proud nations be brought down so easily? They are not brought down by power and battle. It is the soft colonialism that brings them down. It is the hidden colonialism of the NGO that brings them down. It is the slow, percolating, colonialism of European tourists who arrive to enjoy themselves but stay as ‘aid workers’ that brings them low. How can such proud nations give up so easily? Can they not remove the shackles? Eritrea has removed them. Eritrea has struggled against the internationalism that threatened to colonize it after it gained independence from Ethiopia. General Nkunda in the Congo has fought the UN, and been labeled a war criminal for doing so. But few today struggle against this thing. Few nations can bring themselves to restrict the visas of NGO workers and make NGOs illegal and deport the UN. Russia has begun to remove the NGO infestation, and has been called a ‘dictatorship’ for doing so. Russia simply forced NGO funding to come from within Russia, thus drying up the source of all the European sponsored NGOs. Myanmar has kept the NGOs out and the west is threatening to invade her because of it. But nations must not surrender to the abuse hurled at them by the West. They must not surrender their independence. All the nations of the world must remove the UN and its peacekeepers who rape with immunity. They must make NGOs illegal unless the NGOs are funded and staffed by local people. The world has agreed that the crimes at Abu Ghraib should be punished in a court of law. Yet the same world does not believe UN workers should be punished for gang raping 6 year olds. It is time. There is no other way to solve the problem. The funding must be cut off the way one cuts of the funding of terrorists. NGOs support terrorism through their excusal of it and should thus be considered under similar laws. Cutting the funding and requiring that all NGO employees be local hires is the first step to independence from them. No more men named Paul or Steven will be allowed to work for ‘save the children’ in India. From now on their names will be Viveck and Santosh. No more men named Tom will work for ‘Belgian NGOs’ in Ramallah. Instead funding for the NGO will come from the local community and it will employ men named Issa or Mohamed. That is the proper way. That is the independent way. The world deserves nothing more, for the world has not sent its legions to Europe to work in NGOs and non-Europeans do not receive immunity in Europe if they rape and murder Europeans. The world must be freed from the clutches of imperialism once and for all. Tom Kenis, it is time for you to get a job.

Feminism’s other legacy
Seth J. Frantzman
June 21st, 2008

In England the Anglican church marries gay priests and supports Shariah law. In the U.S the two popular shows staring women are Big Love and Secret Diary of a Call Girl. This is the world of the West. It is a world of contradictions and hypocrisy. In the films Hudsucker Proxy and Leatherheads which take place in the ‘conservative’ 1930s and 1950s the main female characters are both over-achieving newswomen. In fact in those times women could find role-models of success, such as the California female Congresswoman Helen Gahagan Douglas. Today’s female role model, judging from what women watch, is either a drug dealer, as portrayed in Weeds, women whose only interest is sex and men as portrayed in Sex in the City, becoming a model as portrayed in America’s Next Top Model, the wonders of polygamy as portrayed in Big Love or being a prostitute as portrayed in Secret Diary of a Call Girl. This is the western way. It is the way of the whore or the burka. There are, in short, only two paths for the western women in life in the West and that is to cover herself from head to toe and become the dog-like wife of a domineering man or to prance around naked for the pleasure of men. In between there are no role models, there is simply nothing.

In an editorial in the Times called ‘Pure Tyranny’ Judith Warner compared a ‘Father-daughter purity’ ball in Colorado Springs to the recent scandal in France where a judge annulled a marriage because the wife turned out not to be virgin. Warner claimed that “Our condemnation of cultural practices and beliefs in our own country that violate girls’ and young women’s dignity and most intimate personal boundaries should be no less total [than the French condemnation.]” Of course like all good leftists today she missed the point. The condemnation in France was based on the fact that the state annulled the marriage, not based on the fact that Muslims demand virginity of their wives. France objected to the State upholding Muslim religious law. In the U.S, of course, the state does not uphold religious law, so although Warner described France as ‘highly secular’, she perhaps missed the fact that the U.S is the truly secular country in terms of its legal system. Liberalism tells us that in fact the case of the Muslim women receiving an annulment is actually about breaking a ‘contract’. Listen to the liberal defend Islam as every liberal is apt to do: “As an American woman living in France, I can’t help but feel a little bit frustrated by the tone of this editorial and, to be blunt, it’s one-sided presentation of the story of the Muslim woman…The fact is that, in the case of the Muslim woman, it was not virginity that was at the heart of the issue. It was honesty and breach of contract. She opted to lie about something that both she and her husband agreed–rightly or wrongly–was vitally important to their marriage….I personally think that chastity until marriage is a personal choice. It wasn’t mine and, to be perfectly honest, I hope it’s not my daughter’s.” In fact most replies by women to Ms. Warner’s article defended Islam while praising the condemnation of the Purity Ball: Patricia noted that “Strictly speaking, the French court annulled the marriage because she misrepresented the facts (and said she was a virgin) not because she wasn’t a virgin.” Mary Louise-Reynolds “I was nauseated by the ‘purity balls.’ Indeed there is something very incestuous about the whole idea….As far as having a hymen restored, that is not surprising, given the Muslim requirement of virginity in marriage .” (however Evangelical Christianity’s decision to have virginity at marriage is, of course, partiarchichal and incestuous and ‘nauseating’).

Feminism however tells us something else: “What women wear, how they look, how much they eat, how old they are, whether they have sex often or not, with who and if she becomes pregnant and what she does with the pregnancy is constantly in the public domain. Until women are respected to determine these things for herself, by both genders, there will not be equality” remarks one Feminist.

Alexis De Tocqueville in 1831 described a very different America: “Long before the young American woman has reached marriageable age, the process of freeing her from her mother’s care has started stage by stage. Before she has completely left childhood behind she already thinks for herself, speaks freely, and acts on her own. All the doings of the world are ever plain for her to see; far from trying to keep this from her sight, she is continually shown more an more of it and taught to look theron with firm and quiet gaze. So the vices and dangers of society are soon plain to her, and seeing them clearly, she judges them without illusion and faces them without fear, for she is full of confidence in her own powers, and it seems that this feeling is shared by all around her… Thus you can hardly expect an American girl to show that virgin innocence amid burgeoning desires and those naive and artless graces which in Europe generally go with the stage between childhood and youth. Seldom does an American girl, whatever her age, suffer from shyness or childish ignorance. She, like the European girl, wants to please, but she knows exactly what it costs. She may avoid evil, but at least she knows what it is; her morals are pure rather than her mind chaste…In France, where there is still such a strange mixture of thoughts and tastes, relics of all the ages, we often give girls a timid, withdrawn, almost cloistered education, as was done under the aristocracy, and then leave them unguided and unaided amid all the disorder inseparable from democratic society.”
(Democracy in America, Volume II Chapter 9) Alexis De Tocqueville, 1831.

America has reversed itself. American women have reversed themselves. Far from offering ‘progress’, feminism has offered only whoredom and slavery to women in America, offering them either the romance and ‘sexiness’ of the Harem, Polygamy, the veil and Belly dancing, or the cesspool of becoming an ‘exotic’ call girl. The two are the same coin. One is Islam, the other is liberalism but both promise women the same thing: slavery. Women in Islam may have their hymen’s reconstructed so men think they are virgins, but the western women has her breast implants. Both societies envision the role of women as being simply to cater to the man’s desire. In Islam he desires virginity and he gets it. He desires multiple wives and he receives it. He desires that women should be murdered for transgressing ‘family honor’ and he receives it. He desires an easy divorce and he receives it. In the West the man desires the whore, the stripper and the porn and he receives it. He desires the 14 year old prostitute described in Tracy Quan’s book (Diary of a Manhatten Call Girl. Tracy herself wanted to be a prostitute from age 10 after reading Xaviera Hollander’s ‘empowering’ book The Happy Hooker) which is now being made into an HBO special by the creator of Sex in the City, and the man receives. The man desires larger breasts and he receives. The man desires the thong and women wear them. The West is Islam. It is the creation of a male-centered society of female slaves whose only desire in life is men and who have no roles for themselves outside of pleasing men, chasing men, talking about men or showing themselves off, for men. The Muslim women has no role in life but to cover herself, her offensive hair and her offensive body, lest the man see it, so that she can preserve herself and her family ‘honor’ for men. Such is the West. Such is Islam. Such is the world. The great tragedy of liberalism is that it has transformed women into commodities, the exact thing it claimed to want to liberate them from.

The bane of the woman’s existence in the West, as in Islam, is women. It is women who claim prostitution is ‘empowering’ just as it is women in Islam who claim that the veil ‘empowers’ them. One cannot blame men for the creation of female servitude. One must blame women. All the television shows about modeling and sex and prostitution are created by women. Playboy is run by a female CEO and it is widely regarded as a ‘feminist’ publication and feminists and leftists frequently use the Playboy Mansion to raise money, with women proudly wearing the bunny emblem. Should it be a surprise? The Anglican church encourages Shariah and gay marriage. Feminism encourages pornography. This is the height of society, the height of the western secular society where opposites are the same thing and where things that seem that they should contradict one another instead make perfect bedfellows. Hugh Hefner and his polygamous household (dare we say it is polygamous even though he is not officially ‘married’ to his girlfriends, but marriage is so cheapened in the West why should we not describe what he has done as marriage?) support Feminism and democratic candidates. Archbishop Rowan Williams extols the Quran. Good. Conservatives should be proud to be ridiculed at a Playboy mansion party and be insulted by the Anglican archbishop. It means that the conservative is doing something right, he is holding his hand against Islam at one time and against secular extremism at the other, and he soon realizes that while he once felt he had to fight each with a different hand that he is in fact fighting the two at the same time and this leaves his other hand free. He can use this other hand to create and to move forward. He no longer has to sit up at night and ask himself ‘how do I fight Islamist conservative extremism and also fight atheistic self-hating extreme liberalism?’ He no longer has to feel there is some sort of culture war tearing him apart where he can’t figure out if he wants to defend his secular democratic society against Islamism or join with Islam to fight secular extremism. He realizes that the two have circled around and found eachother and opposing them is now much easier.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Terra Incognita 38: Herzl, The Iraq War, Isolationism and superdelegates

Terra Incognita
Issue 38
“Written to enlighten, guaranteed to offend”

A Publication of Seth J. Frantzman
Jerusalem, Israel


June 7th, 2008

1) Crusader, Colonialist, Nazi, Apartheid, Ethnic-cleansing, Racist state; The European and the Other: Herzl's greatest misreading of history: Theodore Herzl believed that the creation of a Jewish state would rid the world of anti-Semitism because he believed the Europeans hated Jews due to the transnational quality of Jews. Today Europeans hate Jews because Jews are considered nationalists and their country, Israel, is described variously as a Crusader, colonialist, Nazi, Apartheid, Ethnic-cleansing, racist state. Is it a coincidence that Israel supposedly has the qualities that Europe once had? Herzl missed this essential reading of history. Europeans find reasons to hate Jews regardless of what Jews do. Whatever qualities are ascribed to Jews they are always the opposite what is culturally popular in Europe.

2) The Secret History of the Iraq War II: The Worst and the dumbest 2003-2008: America’s failure in Iraq has nothing to do with not bringing the correct experts or because of American arrogance or due to the failure of American arms. It has everything to do with the strange combination whereby the reconstruction and occupation was put into the hands of the worst and the dumbest, the exact opposite of the type and character of people put in charge of Germany and Japan in 1945. In addition several other things frustrated American success, namely the reliance on contractors, mercenaries and even too much of a regard for human rights.

3) A little dose of isolationism, please: Perhaps it is time for a little dose of Isolationism in America. This is not because the ‘American empire’ must be brought under control but rather because the world deserves to live in a world without America where the world will have to mature and stop blaming all its problems, from food shortages to the oil crises on United States.

4) The Shadow of Westmoreland County and Boss Tweed: the Democratic party and its superdelegates: Now that the Democratic primaries are finally over it is worthwhile reflecting on the existence of the Democratic superdelegates. Few news programs have revealed that this phenomenon does not haunt the Republican party. The reasons for this have much to do with the history of the Democratic party and its tradition of elitism and reliance on ‘wise men’ and a semi-aristocracy to make its decisions.

Crusader, Colonialist, Nazi, Apartheid, Ethnic-cleansing, Racist state; The European and the Other: Herzl's greatest misreading of history
Seth J. Frantzman
June 1st, 2008

Meron Benvenisti calls it a Crusader State. Noam Chomsky calls it a Colony. Arnold Toynbee compared its actions to the Nazis. Jimmy Carter calls it an Apartheid state. Ilan Pappe says it is involved in Ethnic-cleansing. Everyone calls it racist. This terrible thing, which Iran's president refers to as a 'stinking corpse' exists in our midst and yet we are unable to expunge it from the face of the earth. Not yet, at least.

What thing could conjure up all these insults. Could it be the actual Crusaders, those Europeans who went across Europe to reclaim the Holy Land? Could it be an actual colony such as New Spain where the Spanish lopped off the arms of the natives to find gold? Could it be the actual German Nazis who murdered and genocided their way across Europe? Could it be the actual practitioners of Apartheid, descendants of the Dutch who live in South Africa? Could it be the actual ethnic-cleansers of the Balkans? Could it be the actual Racist Europeans who gloried in race theory in the late 19th century? No. No. No. No. No. No. It is none of those things. It is not European. It is something Europeans dislike.

Theodore Herzl, sitting in the dais watching the proceedings at the Dreyfus trial became convinced that the way to solve the Jewish problem was the creation of a Jewish State so the Jews would be like other nations and have their own state rather than being a transnational minority loyal to none and always wandering about. He believed the European anti-Semites who claimed they hated Jews because of their race and their 'mixing' and 'pollution' of Europe and their lack of loyalty and their lack of being 'European'. Herzl had once felt the Jews might solve their problem by converting en masse to Christianity or by taking up such gentile hobbies as hiking and exercise. But it was not to be, he understood. Jews could not become Europeans. He truly believed the anti-Semites. He believed their rhetoric. But he was misreading history. He did not understand anti-Semitism for what it was: merely the latest manifestation of Jew hatred and the latest excuse for Europeans to blame their problems and those of the world on the Jew.

Herzl could not have known then what has become obvious. Could he have realized that Europeans claimed once to hate Jews merely because the Jews were not Christian. He could not have realized that with secularization the Europeans then decided they would hate Jews because Jews were a separate nation or 'race'. He truly believed the European. He truly believed a Jewish State would make Europeans accept Jews. If he had thought deeper he might have realized that the creation of a Jewish State would merely change the level of Jew-hatred from the internal hatred within European countries to an international hatred of Jews by states. In this way the Jew would not be the pollutant within the state but rather a state polluting the international system that had to be condemned as a 'pariah' by other states.

Once the Jews established Israel it did not take long for the international community to create the mechanisms of hatred anew. The Red Cross which had done nothing to tell the world of the Holocaust and had actively collaborated with the Nazis has become the greatest condemner of Israel. The UN condemns Israel. Amnesty International. Human Rights Watch. For numerous authors the existence of Israel threatens world peace and now large percentages of most European nations believe the existence of Israel is the greatest threat to world peace.

What is most fascinating is the way Europeans condemn Israel. Europeans take those things they have done in their past which they are least proud of and they castigate Israel for doing them. Europeans hate the Crusaders and peg them as racists. Israel thus becomes a 'Crusader State'. Europeans reject colonialism today, although they excelled at it for 500 years, and thus Israel becomes a 'colonial state'. Europeans reject Nazism so Israel becomes a 'Nazi' state. Europeans reject Apartheid even though it was their descendants who invented it and so today they call Israel an 'Apartheid State'. Jimmy Carter did nothing about Apartheid when he was president but he now condemns Israel for being an Apartheid State. Europeans, who invented the notion of race, today reject racism so Israel becomes a 'racist' state. Europeans who once joined their churches to their governments now condemn Israel for having a state religion. Most fascinating of all Europeans condemn Israel for being an 'alien western presence' in the Middle East. Thus the very people, the Jews, who Europeans condemned for so long as 'hunchbacked Asiatics' now are 'Europeans.'

How is it that Europeans have come to cast aspersions on Israel for all those things in their own past they are most ashamed of? How is it that Israel is given the qualities of all those things Europeans hate the most, things they themselves invented? The process is fascinating and says much about what a modern European is. A modern European hates itself. But because Europeans have always hated Jews they only know to hate Jews and thus the self becomes the Jew so that the European can step outside himself and in the name of supporting the 'downtrodden Palestinians' he can condemn the Jews for being European and having all the sins of the European.

Take the European Jonathan Littell, author of Les Bienveillantes, a bestselling novel about an SS officer. He refers to Israel as a 'crazed Western society' and compares Zionism to embryonic Nazism of the 1930s. But think deeply about how Europe views Israel. It ascribes to Israel all the faults of the European past in order to hate Israel in the present. Furthermore it claims that the existence of Israel is the greatest threat to world peace. This is the link. The condemnation of Israel, the Jewish State, as a threat to world peace is identical to what was written in the European bestseller, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion which described the Jewish 'elders' as using war as a way to divide Europeans so that Jews could control Europe. The direct line from the Protocols to Bienveillantes is obscure but fascinating. Although one describes Jews at the height of their power and the other describes Jews being murdered in the Holocaust both are written with the background of someone who hates the Jews. The Russian gentile fabricators who wrote Protocols created a forgery that purported to show the Jews plotting the control of the world. The American born Littell wrote a memoir of an SS officer who is in fact a stand-in for an Israeli. We know that Littell modeled his SS officer on modern Israeli soldiers because of his constant discussions around 'why' people become perpetrators of mass murder and his frequent reference for Israelis to read his book and thus see that they are themselves like the perpetrator he describes. Thus while one book hates the Jews for their transnational power and their subjugation of European nation-states the other hates the Jews because the Jews have become Europeans or 'crazed' westerners. In both instances the European ascribes to the Jewish Other the traits he hates at the time. The European in 1900 hated the Jews for being 'nomadic' and wandering from place to place and having no homeland. The European of 2000 hates the Jews for having a homeland.

Is it true that one essence of a European is hatred? This does not seem fare to say. But what other conclusion can be drawn? In 1938 European rightists across the continent hated the Jews for polluting their pure race. In 2008, just 70 years after, the European leftists hate the Jews for being European and western. Jonathan Littell is the key. He is a Jew. But he believes himself to be a European and he hates Israel for being European. The modern day Jew who hates Israel adopts the race of the European in order to do so and in order, ironically, to cast aspersions on Israel for committing the sins that Europe invented in the past, such as Nazism and Colonialism.

There can be no reconciling the Europeans and the Jews for one portion of European society the only hatred in life is Jews. He cannot hate anything else with passion. Whatever Jews do, Europeans do the opposite. When Jews were transnational the Europeans were nationalist. When Jews are nationalist the Europeans are international. When Europeans are religious the Jews are practicing Judaism. When Europeans are secular racists the Jews are a dark and swarthy race. When Europeans are self hating the Jews are European.

The question is: If the Jews all die will Europeans die as well? Does the European need the Jew in order to survive? Is it his life blood? Is it his essence? Is his world so focused on the Jew, so centered around what the Jew does, so predicated on the Jew, that without the Jew he dies? Before the Jews existed there was nothing in Europe. We know this because there are no inscriptions from European civilizations that existed before the Jews. After the Jewish revolt of 70 A.D the Fall of Rome began, thus showing the destruction of the Jews was intricately linked with the decline of Europe. After Hitler killed the European Jews the decline of Europe began once again. Europe lost its direction and soul and was overrun by immigrants, enslaved by the Soviets and has entered a new dark age of directionlessness where it doesn't even have any national pride.

There is a scene in the film Planet of the Apes where Charlton Heston finds a baby doll and says of the humans that created it "he was a weak fragile animal, but he was here before you and he was better than you are." The Jews existed before the Europeans. They may have been weak but they were there before and they were better than the Europeans.

The Secret History of the Iraq War II: The Worst and the dumbest 2003-2008
Seth J. Frantzman
June 3rd, 2008

In my previous article on the Secret History of the Iraq War, I proposed that the true reason for invading Iraq, far from being because of Weapons of mass Destruction or Oil, was in fact because of the realization at the highest levels that Saudi Arabia was a problematic ally. If Iraq could be transformed into a secular, democratic ally with oil and American military bases then America could wean herself from being held hostage to Saudi, from whence all the 9/11 hijackers had come.

But the outcome has not been as predicated. Numerous books such as Fiasco By Thomas Ricks, State of Denial by Bob Woodward and Imperial Life in the Emerald City have tried to point to why. Numerous other books have simply condemned the administration for 'lying' and using 'propaganda'. Among the themes that have become common are beliefs that the war was for Haliburton to profit, for the oil, for revenge and for Israel. From Richard Clarke's Against all Enemies to George Tenet's At the Center of the Storm to the recent book by Scott Mclellan entitled What Happaned the public has been given an 'insiders account' or 'tell all' of what 'really' went on in the Bush White house. It might e surprising for someone to put all this aside and note that almost none of it is correct. But that is just what needs to be done.

In Imperial Life Rajiv Chandrasekaran paints a picture of why America failed. He chocks it up to a lack of expertise, a lack of hiring enough Middle East Scholars, a lack of interest in the local culture, too many French Fries and too much pork on the menu in the Green Zone. He also chocks it up to the hiring of inexperienced political hacks who flooded Iraq as 'contractors' after the fall of Baghdad. He is correct on one point. Twenty-three year olds hired fresh out of college to run the Iraqi stock exchange did not help matters in Iraq. But on all the other points he misses the boat. He condemns America for 'replicating' the diet of the Ameircan South in the lunch halls in the Green Zone. Mostly he condemns America for serving pork in the cafeterias and thus 'offending' the Muslim Pakistanis hired to cook the meals. This is patently ridiculous. American troops do not have to submit to the dietary choices of the nations they happen to have invaded. American bases in foreign countries do not have change due to what might 'offend' the locals. In Germany after the Second World War the presence of Jews was 'offensive' but the American military didn't keep all its Jews at home. Likewise in the American South after the Civil War the presence of Blacks in uniform was offensive but America didn't disband its black regiments to appease southern sensibilities. Muslims don't eat pork. That is their decision. If the Pakistani cooks hired by Kuwaiti subcontractors didn't like cooking the 'haram' meat they could have quit, although as Mr. Chandrasekaran points out, they were enslaved by their Kuwaiti contractors who confiscated their passports. This second piece of information, which the author fails to develop, is actually more important than the pork cooking. In fact this is what helped cause the downfall and failure of the American efforts at reconstruction.

While Americans who arrived in Iraq in 2003 did not enjoy the Iraqi diet, some didn't even eat Humus and Falafel while stationed in Baghdad, they seem to have appreciated the business culture of the Middle East and adopted its values: namely corruption, cheating, lying and dishonesty. The American contractors who sucked up the fat government contracts that were issued after 2003 to rebuild Iraq came from the lowest levels of American life. They replicated Middle Eastern corruption on a gargantuan scale, providing faulty equipment and bilking the government out of billions. In many cases they were hired with no prior background in what they were contracted to do. While American businesses in the U.S face regulation from the likes of the S.E.C and other regulators, those contracting in Iraq faced almost no supervision. In many cases American military accountants have now admitted that they simply didn't keep track of where any of the money went that was paid out to contractors. In the beginning this took the form of simply dolling out crates of hundred dollar bills. Billions disappeared. Hundreds of thousands of rifles meant for the Iraqi police also disappeared. This lack of responsibility and record-keeping is not endemic to America. But it has appeared in other wars. In the 1898 war against Spain the troops received rotten beef. In the Second World War the American military received planes that crashed. In both cases congressional hearings ferreted out the corrupt businessmen and put them in prison. To date none of the corrupt contractors have been brought to justice. This is a failure of the American judicial system and congressional oversight. One should also note the Americans contracted billions of dollars to our Saudi and Gulf Arab 'allies.' These Arab contractors proved no better. Using slave labour from the Phillipines and South Asia they also provided faulty equipment or sometimes no equipment at all.

In the Emerald City the author chides the U.S for not bringing along people experienced in 'post conflict reconstruction'. What he apparently means is the U.S didn't bring along enough European UN and Red Cross workers, the sort of people who had done an excellent job reconstructing Haiti, East Timor and Kosovo. Well they hadn't. But they had the credentials. In the Second World War when the American legions rolled into Germany they did not bring in their wake people with experience in reconstructing. If they had anyone with such experience it was people who had been involved with the Works Progress Administration, FDR's federally funded program that sent people back to work in the Depression and had built giant concrete projects across the U.S, such as dams and buildings. In truth there is no where America could have learned such expertise in 2003. If one examines similar European inspired attempts to rebuild ruined countries one finds only a trail of tears. The Europeans attempted to do this through colonizing East Timor, Haiti and Kosovo and with the exception of Kosovo, where a European ethnic-cleansing campaign against Serbs succeeded in creating a homogenous country, the examples of this 'reconstruction' are an illusion. Why didn't America fare better at reconstruction? America has succeeded in Germany, Japan and even in the American South in the wake of the Civil War. So why did American know how and ingenuity become frustrated in Iraq? This is a worthwhile question to ponder. Was it the culture of Iraq that caused this? In Germany and Japan America came across a conquered homogenous people with a history of obsession with technology and a passion for Futurism or rather the love of industry. Putting these people 'back to work' was not ingenious. Evidence indicates that these people wanted to be put back to work and that most of them gladly obeyed. The only place that one can say was a reconstruction success was Iraqi Kurdistan. The Sunni and Shia portions of Iraq were not. In the Shia areas there was no history of work, partly because these people had suffered subjugation by Saddam and had no tradition of wanting to build an industrial base to serve a state they hated. In the Sunni areas the people were loyal to Saddam and had no reason to help build an industrial base for a state now governed by Americans and Shias. But is this enough of an explanation? One of the failures of the rebuilding process must lay at the feet, once again, of the contractors. The stories told of the contracting sound like something out of Mexico. People were hired to build desalination plants and waste treatment facilities. In most cases the facilities were built but no one was trained to staff them and no spare parts were ever shipped. This shoddy work is reminiscent of what befell the Soviet Union in its last decade of existence. Giant factories in the Soviet Union existed but most of the interiors had been stripped bare by workers and they rarely produced at level near their intended output because of chronic shortages. The American failure to reinstitute any sort of economy of scale was perhaps multiplied by the fact that so little of the infrastructure could be produced locally in Iraq.

Books have criticized America for not bringing along enough Middle East Scholars and Arabic speakers to Iraq. This critique seems logical on the surface. America has numerous Middle East Studies Departments and numerous Arabic speakers in those departments as well as large numbers of Arab Americans. While recruitment of the Arab Americans may have been an interesting idea in truth it would have accomplished little. Since many American Arabs are Christian there would have been a perception that the American Administration was doing in Iraq what the British had done ealier in the Middle East: hiring local minority groups who were sympathetic to run things. The British had tried this in iraq in the 1920s by hiring and arming Assyrian Levies. In Egypt they had done it with Copts. Neither case worked out well for the Christians or for the perception of the British by the locals. But if America couldn't bring its Arabs then it could have at least brought its scholars like Lisa Anderson, Walid Khalidi and Nadi Abu El Haj along. There is one problem. America's Middle East Studies Departments are all Anti-American and the Arabic speakers have all learned Arabic abroad in Arab countries where in edition to learning Arabic they recite the Shahaada, or conversion verse, daily "La illaha ilallah, wa Muhammadu rasul Allah." America's scholars on Islam, with the exception of Bernard Lewis, Daniel Pipes and Martin Kramer, are all Islamophiles and many of them are Islamists. It is the Middle Eastern Studies department at Columbia that sent the invitation for Ahmadinjed to speak and also invited the foreign minister of Iran to speak. These departments are not only anti-American, they are also full of anti-Semites and people with very clear and biased missions of their own for the Middle East. In fact many of them were noted for their support of Saddam and quite a few signed letters denouncing the war in Iraq. Hiring these people would have put America back in the strange situation it found itself in with Radio Free Europe in the 1970s when it turned out that the American funded radio station which was supposed to provide broadcasting for dissidents in Eastern Europe had actually been taken over by Communists. Hiring American Arabic scholars to go to Iraq would have been akin to hiring Saddam or Osama to lead the occupation and would have negated the very logic behind the occupation in the first place. In addition, most Middle East Studies Departments are endowed by Saudi Arabia, and hiring their scholars would have been akin to hiring the 9/11 hijackers to transform Iraq, such is the extremist viewpoints created by the Saudi endowment of these departments.

There has been a great deal of criticism of the American security contractors in Iraq such as Blackwater, Dyncorp and Triple Canopy. The criticism is usually that these contractors ran wild in Iraq and are not accountable for shooting civilians. In truth the real problem with them has been the fact that the army has outsourced its job to them so that the government can keep troop levels low. With 130,000 American contractors a total of 5 divisions of American troops can be saved from deployment. But this is merely fighting a war with mercenaries and has no precedent in American history. In fact the great problem of the Iraq war has been that it is the first war where much of the American military's logistics and security has been outsourced. This is part of the Rumsfeld plan that foresaw a lean American army. But this lean army is not conducive to fighting major wars and handling an occupation. The American army has seen lean years before. In 1859 it consisted of only a skeleton of 29,000 officers and enlisted men. In 1929 only 250,000 men were under arms. In 1789 the U.S had only 718 men in the regular army. At its height of power, by contrast, the U.S had 11,995,000 men under arms in 1945. In the Civil War some 3 million men were under arms on both sides of the conflict. Consider these figures when considering the difference between the American juggernaught that rolled into Western Germany in 1945 and meticulously razed the American South during the Civil War. Consider Phil Sheridan's order of the day on August 7th, 1864 when he was directed to invade the Shenandoah valley with his Union Cavalry army of 40,000 men: "The people should be informed that so long as an army can subsist among them recurrences of these raids must be expected, and we are determined to stop them at all hazards. ... Give the enemy no rest ... Do all the damage to railroads and crops you can. Carry off stock of all descriptions, and negroes, so as to prevent further planting. If the war is to last another year, we want the Shenandoah Valley to remain a barren waste." Sheridan complied in much the same way the American bomber command under Curtis LeMay razed the German cities during the Second World War. By contrast Shock and Awe was indeed merely, shock and awe, it produced little devestation on the scale unleashed by previous American armies. And yet the reconstruction was a failure and a virtual shadow army of contractors were hired in the place of actual soldiers to do the job that in previous wars the American army had been able to accomplish.

What of the insurgency? Did the insurgency defeat the Americans? The answer is yes and no. In the wake of the Second World War and the Civil War there was little in the way of an insurgency. It has been estimated that no more than 700 Americans died after the German capitulation. In the American south the various 'resistance' organizations that sprang up such as Nathan Bedford Forrest's KKK or the Jesse James Gang killed few Union soldiers. But resistance in the face of national defeat has taken place elsewhere, notably in Spain between February and July 1808 an improvised Spanish army of resistance emerged to fight Napoleon causing thousands of casualties. Lack of resistance certainly makes the situation in Iraq after 2003 incomparable with the situations of other American occupations and liberations. But the great failure of American arms must be pegged at the military's inability to crush the resistance using any means possible. The modern era of political correctness and 'human rights' means that a military can never defeat a resistance but instead must accept a status quo of terrorism and security. This is why the American military unwisely studied the French in Algeria and the Israeli army in the West Bank to 'learn' about how to fight a resistance. The Iraqi insurgents also studied, the Palestinian fighters in the West Bank and the Islamist resistance in Afghanistan and Algeria and Chechnya. Iraq therefore became what everyone had studied, a savage, terrorist-ridden quagmire. If America had been slightly more brutal and prescient it would have studied how Saddam put down the Shia rebellion and how Assad put down the Islamist rebellion in Syria: brute force and mass killing of recalcitrant people.

To make up for the failure in Iraq the long arm of American justice must reach out and find the corrupt contractors who have bilked the American taxpayer out of billions. The money trail is not completely obscured. Tens of thousands of Arab and American contractors are living large on the money they have absconded with. It is time for America to turns it vengeance on these people. The history of the Iraq war will not be complete until these animals have been brought to justice. The failure in Iraq has proved to result from four primary things: A corrupt group of American and Arab contractors who adopted the culture of the Middle East, a secondary tier of Americans who adopted the haughty and arrogant ways of the U.N and Europeans during the occupation and believed that they could run universities and stock exchanges without any prior experience in anything, the American military inability to use overwhelming force and the need therefore to rely on security contractors and outsourcing, the human rights environment that forced the American military to obey the 'rules of war' and the mistaken belief that studying the failures of France and Israel would result in success.

A little dose of isolationism, please
Seth J. Frantzman
Mary 18th, 2008

Tourism is a modern phenomenon. A recent article in some magazine attached to the Herald Tribune argued that tourists are seeking more 'authentic' and 'unfiltered' cultural experiences. Alongside this is the advent of poverty and social cause tourist. There are tours to the worst ghettos in Brazil and peace tourism for Europeans and their Arab Khaffiyas to visit Palestine and fight the Israeli occupation. Then there is the dark side, the Sex tourist.

Tourism and isolationism are related for isolationists are not usually globe-trotting tourists. During the recent catastrophe in Myanmar there was much talk of how we must help them. It makes one realize the degree to which people have come to believe that every large death toll in a foreign country can be solved by 'aid'. There is a notion that 'without me, they would starve'. This notion plays itself out after every earthquake or tidal wave. There is the immediate rush by westerners to 'save' the dying people in some far off land. But this is a modern phenomenon. 200 years ago there would have been no rushing to help. Why? Technology is bring the world's catastrophes to our doorstep. The ultimate act of courage is to ignore them.

How can one ignore 50,000 dead Chinese or 78,000 dead Burmese or 150,000 dead Indonesians? One can ignore them the way one ignored them when they were alive. When those 50,000 Chinese people were alive in some unknown, hard to pronounce, province in the middle of no where we didn't care about them. Is it rational to suddenly want to 'save' them?

It is not a question of reciprocity. Foreign countries don't care when large numbers of westerners die in disasters. There was no foreign aid after Katrina, unless it was in the form of foreigners laughing at the U.S and offering handouts to the pathetic giant that couldn't help its own people. The Chinese were not standing in line to give aid. But the courage to not help Chinese people is not about getting revenge. It is about being practical and changing the way one views the world.

They will survive without our help. The notion, the arrogant notion, that they 'need' us and our donations is quite extraordinary. China existed long before the West. It suffered earthquakes back then too. Yet there were no westerners to help then. So how did China survive? It survived somehow. All the places that we yearn to 'save' today have existed just as long as we have, if not longer. The African children who are perpetually starving have been around longer than westerners. The Burmese, the Indonesians. They have been there too. This notion that we are responsible for them is so extraordinary and uniquely modern that it is hard to understand it, had we not all grown up with it.

The ability to deny foreigners aid when they suffer catastrophe is directly linked with the ability to return to isolationism. Surely this is the opposite, or at least one opposite, of neo-conservatism. But it is a decent answer to the world. The world complains about America. Perhaps it is time the world lived without the U.S. But the world must know that isolationism may affect it more than it realizes. Isolationism means a return to a more authentic America. In this America one cares more about business and less about foreigners.

The world plays an interesting blame game with the U.S. On the one hand it blames the U.S for not 'leading'. It blamed the U.S for the Rwandan genocide. Yet at the same time it blames the U.S for being the 'bully'. The world needs to learn that it can take care of itself. There are 180 countries in the world, the notion that America must 'lead' them all or that America 'bullies' them all is ridiculous. But one cannot see how ridiculous it is unless America is willing to remove itself from that world. America must remove itself from the U.N, first of all. The U.N receives half of its budget from the U.S. Yet the U.N is the very place where anti-U.S rhetoric is heard all too often. It is time to sell off the U.N complex in New York City to investors and evict the tenants, most of whome had racked up millions of dollars in unpaid parking tickets. In fact the foreign cars should be confiscated as compensation for these tickets. America should pull out of Iraq and let Iraq die. Iraq deserves what it gets.

The world needs a little dose of American isolationism. The two decades of America as a world power which will end in 2009 (1989-2009) have proved a complete disaster, not because of America, but because of the good intentions of America and the obnoxious intentions of the world. America tried to help Eastern Europe integrate into Europe. America tried to solve crises in Panama, Somalia and Haiti. It tried to sort out the mess in the Balkans. It tried to stop Saddam Hussein and then it tried to liberate Iraq. America tried to get revenge for 9/11 and also to fight a war on terror. America has tried to work with China, India and Russia. America has tried to help in Africa. But in each case America is frustrated. After America donated hundreds of billions of dollars to Indonesian Muslim victims of the Tsunamai, America ws confronted with anti-American protests by Indonesian Muslims. In other places America has given aid and not even told the people it came from the U.S, a replay of the support America gave the Mujahadin in Afghanistan in which Pakistan took all the credit. It has to stop. America was blamed for the Rwandan genocide by Europeans when it was those European states, Belgium and France, who had armed the genocidaires. After 9/11 America was blamed for the 'blowback' because America had supported Israel, supported Saudi and established basis in the Persian gulf to defend the Gulf Arabs. Its time for America to end its relationship with the satanic regime in Riyadh and with the Gulf Arabs. Everyone is so afraid that Iran will sit across the oil spigots. But technology can defeat oil. The Gulf Arabs have built cities over the dead bodies of hundreds of thousands of South Asian slaves that they have imported. There is no reason to have a relationship with such blood soaked regimes.

In short, the world doesn't deserve America. The world deserves itself. It has always deserved itself. Europeans deserved Nazism, not because they all deserved to die, but because of their weakness and appeasement. The world has always deserved its extremism, from the inquisition to Communism. America has always been the happy warrior, the center. It is time America return to that center and look inwards and remove itself, if only for a few decades, from the world so the world can start growing up and blaming itself for its problems.

Instead of looking for 'authentic' and 'unfiltered' cultural experiences Americans can once again start learning about their heritage and their great vistas. America is bigger than Europe and has more unfiltered culture than the world can ever offer. Leave the culture and the earthquakes and the wars to the world. Its time for America to live again and not be burdened by these shackles. As Russel Means said "for America to live, Europe must die."

The Shadow of Westmoreland County and Boss Tweed: the Democratic party and its superdelegates
May 27th, 2008
Seth J. Frantzman

In the early days of the American Republic it was thought that the Senate should be appointed by the political parties so that it would eschew extremism and faction, those things that so worried the early American founding fathers. For their generation such things were indeed worrisome for although they had launched a great revolution they had not intended to create a country akin to the Wild West. Until 1913 the U.S Senators were chosen by state legislators, not by the people. The various small rebellions such as Shay's rebellion in 1786 and the Whiskey rebellion in 1794 made it clear that a weak federal government, as envisioned in the original Articles of Confederation and the masses which were given, at time, to outbursts of extremism could lead to chaos.

The first great American politicians were almost all from just three notable counties in Virginia. George Washington and James Monroe were from Westmoreland County. James Madison was from King George County and Thomas Jefferson was from Albemarle County. This southern elite contributed great ideas to the United States and helped frame the Constitution. However it was very much an elite. Early American politics was dominated by two parties, the 'Federalist' and the 'Democratic-Republican'. The Federalist Party would eventually become the American Whig Party and finally the Republican Party. The Democratic-Republican Party would become the party of Andrew Jackson and eventually the Democratic Party.

It is interesting the original elites of the Democratic-Republican party whose fear of the rabble led eventually to the burgeoning existence of 'Political Bosses' in the Democratic Party that culminated with Boss Tweed, Tammany Hall, Tom Pendergast, James Farley and Chicago's Richard Delay. It was the Democratic Party that excelled in the arena of the Political Boss and the 'smoke filled rooms'. This is not political sniping but fact. While the Republican Party had its elites and its system, the thug-like system of bosses, union corruption and mafia connections was never a part of the Republican meleiu. However the Boss system of the Democratic Party produced well known politicians from Harry Truman to John F. Kennedy.

As the Democratic Party transformed itself from the 19th century party of populism, southern reactionaries and Bosses into the 20th century manifestation of unions, big government, diversity and liberalism this necessitated a change in the governing structure of the party. This led directly to the 1968 McGovern-Fraser commission which caused the Democrats to do away with the 'smoke-filled room' style of selecting delegates to the national convention. Prior to 1968 the parties elders and bosses had chosen many of the delegates to the national conventions and thus ensured that the top echelons of the party had their say in who would be the presidential nominee. This is no surprise given the history of the Democratic Party's attachment to bosses and Southern elites. However the revolution in the rules of the Democratic Party that took place in 1968 led to Democratic delegates being selected by popular vote. Recall that 1968 was the height of the Vietnam war and student activism and with Bobby Kennedy and Eugene Mcarhty as potential anti-war nominees campaigning against the 'Happy Warrior' Hubert Humphrey for the soul of the Democratic party it was no surprise that the rules should have been ratified that year. But that year also led the Democrats into a wilderness. Nixon not only beat Humphrey in 1968 but crushed George McGovern in 1972 in one of the great landside victories of American presidential politics. After the destruction of Jimmy Carter by Reagan's revolution in 1980 it became clear that giving too much power to the masses of the Democratic Party had resulted in the choice of a lunatic leftist fringe to head what had been a centrist American Political party. In 1982 the Democrats swung back and created a class of Superdelegates or 'un-pledged' delegates that would consist of sitting Democratic Senators, Congressmen, governors, members of the Democratic National Committee and ordinary citizens selected by the party. This class of delegates began at only 14% of all Democratic delegates to the 1984 convention but has steadily increased to become 20% of the delegates to the Demcratic conventions. Their power was first felt in 1984 when they helped hand the nomination to the staid Walter Mondale over the more popular and youthful Gary Hart. Mondale, unsurprisingly, went down to defeat, as did Mr. Dukakis.

This years split decision in the Democratic ranks has led to the prospect that the Superdelegates could decide the nomination against the will of the rank and file. This is certainly not something the party wants to do. Such a visible flexing of elitist muscle would send the wrong message to the poor blacks and union workers who make up the foot soldiers of the party. But this prospect should send a message to this rank and file. It should show them that in truth the Democratic Party's leadership has not changed dramatically since 1800. Indeed the party is currently set to nominate one of its two 'favored minorities', a black or a woman (certainly not a black woman however). But when it comes to who is running the party the style is mostly the same as in the past. Wealthy rich elites who inherited their wealth make up the pashas of the democratic party. The Kennedys are not the exception, but the rule and the romance attached to these dynasties is a shackle around the necks of the democrats, not so unlike the shackle once placed around the necks of the slaves owned by the founding father of the party, Thomas Jefferson. If the Democratic Party has had one tradition over the years that sits side by side with elitism it is the tradition of hypocrisy. The tradition that allowed Jefferson to write that 'all men are created equal' and yet own slaves. This hypocrisy has certainly not been found in the Republican party's long and hallowed tradition. John Adams was not a slave holder, lest we forget. The Republican Party has had support from wealthy voters, to be sure, but its wealthy supporters have never matched the wealth of the Democratic Party's greatest supporters such as George Soros. It is no surprise that in terms of fundraising the Democratic Party, its Political Action Comittees and its allied political organizations such as outspend the Republican party by a margin of 4 to 1. For instance Obama has raised $40 million dollars a month in fundraising for his campaign while McCain raised only $18 million in April of 2008. The Democratic Primaries have cost the candidates some $300 million. The Republican party estimates that it will take in only another $150 million between the end of May and November. When one compares that with the $240 million that could be raised by Obama the difference is staggering, especially when one considers that this only represents contributions to the campaign and not outside spending.

The Superdelegates are a menace. They include Nancy Pelosi's daughter for instance, a clear mark of nepotism. They are an anti-democratic throwback. While the media likes to focus on them it does not seem to mention that the Republican party eschews this ridiculous elitist method of selection for a winner-take-all system of primaries that prevents the kind of split Proportional Representation that has plagued the democrats. In the end people should recognize that the method of selecting the candidate says much about the culture of the party and although the Republicans are stereotyped as the party of the wealthy the actual culture of the Republican party has always given over control of the party to the rank and file Republicans who, it is no surprise, have a much lower defection rate than Democratic voters (i.e there are no Clinton Republicans, but there are 'Reagan Democrats).