There was once a time when English blood commanded respect. When the people of this nation could proudly proclaim their Anglo-Saxon heritage as others saluted in awe. Today, however, this is long forgotten. Today England is home to the poorly educated, the narrow-minded, the purveyors of anti-culture and the subservient dregs of defeat – the underclass of Europe. In the 21st century, past glories long forgotten, the rest of the world sees England primarily as a source of humour. We are, it suffices to say, the butt of the world’s jokes – certainly of Europe’s. Oh the irony, when the red-faced, overweight yobs paint themselves red and white with the Cross of St. George and loudly proclaim themselves an Englishman, as if this sentiment incurs anything other than scornful contempt. This fact was brought home by a recent exchange with a language teacher, who gleefully recounted a favourite joke of his students: those who speak three or more languages, we call multilingual; those who speak two languages; bilingual; those who speak one language, we call them English. This is a brilliant polemic that encapsulates the small-minded, under-educated disaster that claims to be the English people. It demonstrates our unwillingness to learn, our misplaced aversion to anything “foreign” and the arrogant assumptions of a misplaced sense of superiority. We’ve become a nation of delinquents, the sort that derives meaning from having its own name tattooed on its forehead whilst the rest of Europe (and the world) looks on with amusement.
In the post-war era, Zionism is an ideology that has dominated the political landscape. Movements on the radical Left and radical Right have come to be defined by either their support or opposition to this cause, whilst what can only be described as zealously enthusiastic Zionism has become government policy for most European states. It’s also led to much contention. For instance, it is often alleged by Zionists that opposition to their ideology equates to holding anti-Semitic beliefs. What exactly is meant by the term, too, is a point of fierce debate. In this essay, I will attempt to define what Zionism is, what it isn’t, and how modern Zionist ideology compares and differs with the historical meaning of the term. Throughout this exercise, I will endeavour to present the information as I find it without prejudice.
In the beginning, what European Jews termed Zionism literally referred to returning to Zion, which can be defined as present day Jerusalem or the entire area of the State of Israel. Up until the post-war period, Jews were a stateless diaspora who resided predominantly in Europe and Russia, and throughout the 19th century the desire for a nation state of their own gathered momentum as a reaction to real or perceived antisemitism. Theodor Herzl, an influential Jewish journalist from the Austro-Hungarian Empire, was the first to congregate the divergent elements of Jewish nationalism into a coherent organisation and strategy for the future, and in 1897 he was elected President of the First Zionist Congress. The Congress gathered influential Jews from across Europe to, unsurprisingly, organise their desire for a Jewish homeland and turn the dream into reality. Around this time, Herzl began to court the support of England’s powerfully rich Jewish nobility, and the English branch of the Rothschild banking family became early supporters of the Zionist aims. Interestingly, the land of Palestine was not the only option mused by the Congress and its supporters. Various delegates were interested in the colonial property of European nations, whilst a segment of Argentina was also looked at. This was a matter of feasibility, for the land that is now Israel was under the jurisdiction of the Ottoman Empire at the turn of the century. Herzl did visit Jerusalem in 1898 (for a well-publicised meeting with Kaiser Wilhelm II), but in 1901 Sultan Abdulhamid II rejected his overtures regarding the Holy Land.
It’s rather an oddity that it took until the late 19th century for Jewish nationalism to gain traction. Throughout the preceding 1500 years, Jews had been the victims of expulsions and pogroms, justified or unjustified, in over 100 different European countries. Indeed, by the late 19th century they had attained a relatively safe position in European society, even if some passive anti-Semitic sentiment still remained. Jews had risen to positions of power and influence in a number of countries, enjoying strong representation in banking, journalism and cultural pursuits in Poland, Germany, Austria and the United Kingdom. However, nationalistic sentiment was increasing throughout Europe in the decades leading up to The Great War, which may well have been the catalyst for an upsurge in reactionary Jewish nationalism. It’s also true that despite many centuries of life in Europe, a large proportion of Jews were still not assimilated into society. They remained markedly different from the native population of the host country, both culturally and religiously. Additionally, the Jewish populations were beginning to become resented by certain sections of European society for their actual or perceived domination of certain industries, most notably finance. It’s also worth noting that at this time Palestine already had some Jewish residents, but they numbered no more than 20,000 at the turn of the century.
The major breakthrough for the Zionist cause came in 1917 when, after capturing (or planning to capture) large portions of the Middle-East from the moribund Ottoman Empire, British Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour promised Palestine to the Zionist Federation of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in a communiqué to Lord Rothschild, an influential member of Britain’s Jewish community. This became known as the Balfour Declaration and the beginnings of the nascent State of Israel. Unsurprisingly, the Jews of Europe’s Zionist Congress were exceedingly excited by the prospect of a state of their own, but they soon encountered a problem most unfortunate to their cause, namely that the majority of European Jews had no desire to move there. Indeed, between 1919 and 1923 when one would imagine enthusiasm for emigration to the newly found Promised Land, just 40,000 of Europe’s nearly 9 million Jews actually moved there. This is because many Jews were thriving in post-war Europe. In Germany, a few hundred thousand Jews had taken advantage of the economic situation and found themselves at the helm of the banking industry, the judiciary, general business, pornography, fashion, medicine and journalism. In Russia, 80% of the leading Bolshevik revolutionaries were Jewish themselves, thus Russia’s 4 million Jews saw a complete reversal of the anti-Semitic sentiment commonplace under the Tsarist regime. Ironically, it was Poland that became most uncomfortable for the Jews, and the majority of emigres to the British mandate of Palestine were from there.
This trend persisted throughout the remainder of the 1920s. Between 1924-29, just 82,000 European Jews emigrated to the new homeland. The real breakthrough for the Zionists came in the 1930s, where 250,000 European Jews emigrated to Palestine by 1939 as a response to growing antisemitism and the advent of National Socialism. The Ha’avara Transfer Agreement also assisted with the Zionist Plan – this was the agreement between the German authorities, the Anglo-Palestine Bank and the Zionist Federation of Germany to provide German Jews with assisted passage to Palestine. However, despite this breakthrough, Jews in the British Mandate of Palestine still numbered well below a million – they were vastly outnumbered by the native Arabs – thus they did not have the capacity to build a fully-fledged nation state. The real breakthrough came in the immediate aftermath of World War Two. As the dust settled in Europe, the Holocaust gave the Zionists a rather more persuasive argument in favour of settling in Palestine. News of the alleged massacres in Europe turned settler Jews against British rule and encouraged large numbers of illegal immigrants to flock to the Homeland. The newly independent State of Israel recorded high levels of immigration in its formative years – 723,000 Jews moved to the country between 1948-53, more than doubling the state’s Jewish population. Thus, in theory, the aim of the original Zionists was complete. World Jewry now had a state of its own, and therefore the requirement for its advocacy should have ceased – yet, as we know, it did not.
Part 2 – Modern Zionism, American Foreign Policy and its Implications
The reason for Zionism’s continuation after and in spite of the creation of an independent Jewish homeland is what marks it out from the vast majority of nations on earth. Almost from the minute it began to exist as an independent nation, Israel has been in perpetual conflict with its Arab neighbours. In 1947, after independence was agreed upon, civil war between Arab and Jewish militias ensued which later escalated into conflict with its neighbouring states. An uneasy peace was established in 1949, but since then we’ve had the Yom Kippur War, the Six-day War, the Suez Crisis and many other conflicts between Israel and its neighbours. Whilst some of these incidents have been initiated by Israel itself, many have been wars of aggression instigated by her Arab neighbours which has led to a siege mentality developing amongst both Israelis and the remaining Jewish diaspora worldwide. This has led to both groups feeling a requirement to consistently justify and lobby in favour of the existence of Israel as a Jewish State.
This is where it perhaps gets somewhat complicated. In the modern era, American foreign policy and Zionism are inextricably linked, so much so that one could accurately describe an amalgamation of the two as a worldview all by itself. This is what separates the different stages of Zionism, which can themselves be summarised in the following way:
Stage 1 – Laying claim to a homeland and enticing support for Jewish emigration to Zion.
Stage 2 – Establishing an independent Jewish nation state and the security thereof.
Stage 3 – Maintaining (and enlarging) Israel and establishing close relations with the world’s premier superpower.
Israel courted America’s support from the beginning, but it may come as a surprise to many given the latter’s zealous support for the Jewish state today that the American government was initially hesitant to embrace a close relationship with them. The most important reasoning behind this was America’s reliance on oil imports from Israel’s Arab neighbours, many of whom were hostile to the Jewish state. However, American policy changed rapidly in the early 1960s. Indeed, it was the Americans that forced the Israelis to withdraw from Egypt at the height of the Suez Crisis in 1956 – a situation that we could scarcely imagine today.
Lyndon Johnson assumed the Presidency after the murder of President Kennedy, and American foreign policy quickly shifted from acquiescence to unquestioning loyalty and support. Around this time, American foreign aid to Israel increased, overtaking the French as the Jewish State’s largest financial contributor. Additionally, arms sales to Israel began to increase. The circumstantial change in the murky world of geopolitical alliances is unclear; perhaps the Americans had come to an arrangement with their oil-rich Arab allies? What’s certain is that the various despots of the Middle-East benefited from US support, such as the Shah of Iran who remained largely silent over the Arab-Israeli conflicts in return for American assistance in retaining domestic power. This tradition has continued up until the modern era. Saudi Arabia, for instance, never speaks a bad word about Israel as a result of its strong alliance with the United States. The Saudis play ball when it comes to Israel and oil exports, so the Americans turn a blind eye to the Arab state’s dissemination of Salafist Islam and covert destabilisation of Europe. These alliances, determined by United States foreign policy, can be considered a key tenet of modern Zionism.
This has a strong implication for Europe. The vast majority of European nations, or at least those bound by NATO treaties, are in effect vassals of the United States, a status that has been firmly entrenched since the days of the Cold War. The United States retains 53,000 troops in Germany, 10,000 in Italy – presumably to ensure that the defeated Second World War peoples don’t “try anything” – and regularly stages provocative military drills on Europe’s Eastern borders. The foreign policy of European nation states is, for the most part, dictated to them by the United States, particularly the United Kingdom’s. This means that their allies are our allies, so the impact of their Zionist geopolitical strategy is felt keenly by our nations in Europe. The vast majority of European nation states have adopted Zionism as official foreign policy, which means a deep allegiance with Saudi Arabia, supporting Islamist and terroristic groups in the Middle-East and opposing secularists and Shia who themselves oppose Zionism. Again, this can be considered an important element of modern Zionism.
Perhaps the most contentious aspect of modern Zionism is the implications for military involvement in the Middle-East. The 21st century has been defined thus far by regime change and perennial war in the region, despite there being no obvious strategic benefit to those involved, such as the United Kingdom or the French Republic. And in recent years, it’s becoming apparent that Israel is wholeheartedly supportive of these endeavours. A possible source of this enthusiasm is what has become known as the Yinon Plan; the expansion strategy, followed by some in the Israeli administration, that would see Israel’s borders expand south through the Sinai Peninsula, and north and eastwards into Syria, fulfilling the biblical pursuit of a Holy Land stretching ‘from the Nile to the Euphrates’. The theory goes that they desire the depopulation of vast portions of the Syrian country in order to fulfil their expansion. This isn’t conspiracy; it’s a well-documented aspect of post-modern Zionism. This has led to the speculation that much of the West’s military endeavours in the Middle-East are aimed, either consciously or via manipulation, at fulfilling Israel’s expansionist plan.
The final aspect worth noting is the phenomenon of sycophantic support for Israel amongst certain communities in the United States, most notably the evangelical Christian communities. Spiritually, they believe the Jewish people to be “God’s chosen people”, which significantly influences their voting patterns. For instance, it would not be a stretch to suggest that some of these communities put Israeli interests before that of their own or their country, so that a President of Congressman may be elected purely on the grounds of his foreign policy platform being supportive of the Zionist worldview. What attracted many of these people to Donald Trump in 2016 was the then-candidate’s pledge to move the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, a move keenly welcomed by Benjamin Netanyahu and his Party who seek an exclusively Jewish Jerusalem. This sort of fanaticism for the State of Israel that has developed within American communities is what has ensured that the Zionist worldview remains in power in America, to the great benefit of Israel. It’s also worth noting that a lot of the most powerful people in America, from media moguls to film producers to authors and politicians, are themselves Jewish. This gives them immeasurable power to shape public opinion in the most powerful country on earth. Additionally, this media power combined with the unquestioning loyalty of large segments of America’s Christian community ensures that the United States invariably overlooks some of the more questionable elements of Israeli foreign policy – inevitably, there will be people who claim Israel’s nobility in relation to its Arab’s neighbours in this domain.
This concludes the discussion on Zionism, and one hopes that the reader now possesses a greater understanding of what Zionism was, is and will continue to be going forward. This should also illuminate the “problem” of anti-Zionism, which many falsely claim to be opposition to Israel’s existence – it’s most often referring to what modern Zionism has become, with the Western foreign policy connotations accompanying that. As to whether Zionism is a force for good or evil, that is for the reader to decide. One thing, however, is already certain beyond doubt: the debate over the merits (or otherwise) of Zionism will continue to divide those of both the left and right of the political spectrum for many years to come.
We’re led to believe that Iran represents all manner of evils and antitheses that threaten the very foundations of our civilisation, a mantra that is fiercely championed by Europe’s neoliberal establishment and its cohorts in the mass media industry. But it’s time we put these assertions through some simple tests to see if they hold water, or if they crumble at the first sign of scrutiny.
Ever since the so-called Islamic Revolution of 1979, certain nations and institutions thereof in the West have sought to establish Iran as a perpetual enemy. We’re led to believe that Iran represents all manner of evils and antitheses that threaten the very foundations of our civilisation, a mantra that is fiercely championed by Europe’s neoliberal establishment and its cohorts in the mass media industry. But it’s time we put these assertions through some simple tests to see if they hold water, or if they crumble at the first sign of scrutiny.
First, it’s important to establish exactly to whom Iran poses a threat, real or imagined. This is unequivocally the United States of America. Ever since the regnant theocracy came to power in Iran in 1979, the Americans have been the chief advocates of this “us against them” theory, with administrations of both parties consistently portraying the Middle-Eastern nation as an enemy to the west. Of course, the new regime hardly endeared itself to the United States when it stood by and allowed students to take a number of Americans hostage at the latter’s embassy in a situation that lasted 444 days (1979-1981). As one would expect, this left a sour taste in the mouths of many Americans in terms of their opinion about Iran. Arguably, this set the tone for diplomatic relations between the two nations ever since. However, this is hardly the full story of that particular situation, and most certainly not the only charge America levels at the Iranian state.
The full story of that fateful hostage situation actually begins in 1953, when the democratically elected Iranian Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh was overthrown in a coup d’état. Usually in US-backed coups abroad, there is some ostensible domestic justification, however in the case of the 1952 Iranian coup, there simply is none. In 2013, to nobody’s surprise, the CIA admitted to being in charge of both the planning and execution of the coup. Events leading up to the coup involved the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC), whose activity had been restricted by Prime Minister Mosaddegh’s government in order to restrict its monopoly over oil exports from the country. When these moves were met with a hostile British reaction, the Iranian parliament voted to nationalise the nation’s oil industry – which, by the way, is well within its rights as a democratically elected parliament. Of course, the British government took exception to this, and ordered its agents in the region to undermine the democratic government. These events culminated in the coup of 1953, which allowed opportunistic generals to strengthen the powers of the Shah, who was conveniently a free-marketeer who opposed nationalisation of the oil industry.
An important point to understand is that the Iranian people at no point supported the coup. The reigning Shah, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, was a deeply unpopular autocratic monarch, whose security forces employed severe repression against political opponents and dissidents. His commitment to Neoliberal economic theory had also failed the nation’s poor, causing widespread relative poverty and discontent amongst the working classes. Indeed, this commitment to free-market policies despite their evident failure led many to view the Shah as an American puppet. Whilst this may be too strong an accusation, it is true that Pahlavi was always careful to toe the US party line and ensure that nothing impeded Anglo-American exploitation of Iran’s oil reserves.
By 1979, discontent with the Shah’s rule reached breaking point. However, the revolution that ensued was like many other revolutions throughout history, in that the end result did not necessarily match the intended aims. It’s referred to, in retrospect, as an Islamic revolution, but in reality, this can best be described as an anti-American, anti-Shah revolution. A disparate group of dissidents joined together to demand the overthrow of the existing order; some were democrats, some communists, some Islamic fundamentalists, some were students and some were simply the working poor. That the end result was a theocratic regime is something of an accident, and a result of the nation’s clerics – historically very powerful – being in the right place at the right time. It’s also in no small part because the Iranian theocrats were one of the most vocal anti-American groups, which enabled them to unite the revolution and channel it through this one specific cause. Ayatollah Khomeini, the nascent Supreme Leader of the Iranian Revolution, was particularly critical of American interference in Iranian affairs, and he greatly improved his prestige by not intervening when a student group occupied the American Embassy in November 1979.
The embassy hostage situation in itself is not as black and white as the Americans always seek to portray it. The student groups – supporters of the revolution – were greatly angered by the American move to offer asylum to deposed Shah Mohammad Pahlavi, whom they wanted to return to Iran to stand trial for crimes against the people committed during his reign by the secret police (SAVAK). They also feared an American attempt at counter-revolution and the reinstallation of the despised Shah by the CIA – a fear not without foundation, given the events of 1953. Thus, whilst the hostage situation was unfortunate in the extreme, it was not the unprovoked, spontaneous outpouring of anarchy and barbarity that the Americans describe today. Indeed, all Americans taken hostage were eventually freed unharmed.
Whilst this brief history lesson does little to analyse contemporary Iranian relations with the West, it is important in understanding the beginnings of the diplomatic rift. It’s also important in understanding who made the first move, as it were, and who, if anybody, is to blame. It suffices to say that persistent American meddling in the region, particularly the unpopular CIA-instigated 1953 coup, demonstrates that it was the Americans who fired the first shot as it were. Of course, it’s not possible to condone the violations of diplomatic immunity and other related international law implications, but one can understand the anger of the revolutionary students who saw once again the Americans interfering with domestic due process, amongst other things.
Moving on to more contemporary affairs, it’s time to analyse some claims made against the Iranian state and nation. First and foremost, the Americans often describe the Iranian state as terrorist, or at least ‘sponsors of terrorism’, which has become a popular description particularly amongst the George W Bush-style neoconservatives. However, this doesn’t stand up to the mildest of scrutiny. The neoconservative establishment plays on their population’s ignorance of Islamic sects and denominations in order to ensure this claim is believed, yet what people must understand is that the Muslims who took down the World Trade Centre, the Muslims who bombed Madrid and Paris and London, amongst other atrocities, practise Sunni Islam, and in particular Salafist Islam of the kind invented and disseminated by Saudi Arabia. The Iranian nation is 99% Muslim, yet they practise Shia Islam, the kind responsible for absolutely no real terrorist activity – ever. To the Shia, jihad is taken in its original context, to mean the personal struggle against inner demons or as applied to other struggles in public or private life. They absolutely do not interpret this as an instruction to blow up shopping centres like their Sunni counterparts. Indeed, you’re invited to research all incidences of Islamic terror in Europe and the United States since 9/11; you’ll notice that without exception, these were committed by Sunni Muslims who pledge their allegiance to Sunni groups, such as Al Qaeda, Islamic State, Al Nusra and so on. Interestingly, the more extremist Sunnis view the Shia with as much contempt as they view the “infidel”.
Undoubtedly some of you will point to Iran’s creation of Hezbollah as a prime example of the nation sponsoring and supporting terror. Hezbollah is a political and paramilitary organisation created initially with the purpose of influencing domestic politics in Lebanon, a country in which they hold 11 seats in government. It’s also active in Gaza and the West Bank, although the governing group in this part of the world is almost exclusively Hamas. The military wing of Hezbollah has been active in support of President Bashar Al-Assad in the ongoing Syrian Civil War. The group is officially designated a terrorist organisation by the world’s major powers, including the USA, UK, France, NATO, the European Union and Israel, despite being responsible for none of the major terrorist atrocities in Europe or America in the last few decades. In fact, Hezbollah’s status in the eyes of the world is defined exclusively by Israel, who deem the group a threat to its existence due to its militant anti-Zionism and Islamic nationalist ideology. However, one could reasonably dispute this classification. An objective analysis would describe Hezbollah’s activity in the wider Israeli-Arab conflict as that of a revolutionary liberation movement, fighting for justice for the Palestinian peoples. It should also be noted that Hezbollah is not an exclusively Islamist organisation – its military wing has Christian battalions and has been known to protect churches in Syria from its Sunni enemies. Indeed, counted amongst Hezbollah’s enemies are Al Qaeda, Islamic State, Saudi Arabia, the Muslim Brotherhood, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the Taliban. Whilst the enemy of my enemy is generally a poor methodology, it’s hard to denounce as Islamic terrorists the group whose sworn enemies are radical Islamic terrorists. Thus, as Hezbollah are the only “terrorist” group supported by Iran, it’s unfair to say that the nation is a sponsor of terrorism.
But what of the charge that Iran’s nuclear program is a threat to world peace? This is a particular favourite of the Pentagon’s, to decry the Iranian nuclear program as a threat to stability in the Middle-East and, even, to world peace itself. However, a little-known fact regarding this issue is that the Iranian nuclear programme began in the early 1950s as a joint venture… with the Americans! When their friend the Shah was in charge, the Americans were perfectly content with Iran having a nuclear programme. The nation ratified the Non-proliferation Treaty in 1970, yet the Americans cut all ties with Iranian nuclear development after the 1979 revolution. Iran continued to develop this programme independently, reaching agreements with France and Argentina on nuclear cooperation in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It has been alleged that Iran’s uranium enrichment programme was intended for non-peaceful purposes, and an investigation was launched in 2003. However, a further International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) investigation in 2011 found that, whilst Iran’s nuclear activity could have been designed to create a nuclear weapon, any large-scale research of this sort ceased in 2003. In any case, even if Iran was attempting to build nuclear bombs, what business is it of anybody else’s? Nobody is threatening war or insisting on international sanctions on India or Pakistan, despite them being in possession of confirmed nuclear weapons. On the subject of non-NPT recognised nuclear states, it’s an interesting point that Israel is in possession of ‘as many as 400’ nuclear warheads (more than the United Kingdom), yet nobody is even concerned with accurately counting them, let alone restricting their development. But again, this boils down to backroom deals and dodgy alliances. The only reason America has a problem with a nuclear-powered Iran is because its greatest ally, Israel, feels threatened. Why should the whims of the Israeli state dictate who should and should not be able to develop nuclear energy?
Finally, we come to the accusation that the Iranian state does not uphold human rights or the rule of law. Ironically, this is the charge with the most truth attached, for the Iranian state is a theocracy, with very limited democracy and some quite backward and draconian punishments by Western standards. For instance, adultery is still a crime punishable by death on the fourth occurrence, and homosexuality is totally prohibited as per Islamic law. Iran has executed a high number of prisoners in recent years, bringing into question its legal provisions for appeal. There is also the fact to consider that freedom of speech is severely limited. Certain international news sites, as well as television services like Netflix, are completely censored, and any attempts to access these are met with redirection to the government website. Even fashion is restricted, with women having to observe hijab by wearing a headscarf in public at all times. Yet whilst we can all condemn such restrictions, we must bear in mind that every nation has its own customs and peculiarities, and that Western liberalism is not necessarily applicable in the universal sense. Additionally, how can we overlook the rank hypocrisy shown by the major Western powers in this instance? Are we not closely allied with Saudi Arabia, a nation that was most accurately described on a British talk show as ‘ISIS with an embassy’. This is a nation that executes homosexuals in a similar manner to the Islamic State, prevents women from driving – Iran, by the way, has a female Vice-President – and murders Yemeni children with White Phosphorus (sold to them by the United States). Yet this nation of extremists is our ally, apparently, whilst the somewhat more moderate Iran is our mortal enemy. So to conclude this particular section; yes, of course we condemn human rights abuses in Iran, but we cannot seriously use this as a tool to manipulate our own population whilst still maintaining civil relations with the No. 1 exporter of terror Saudi Arabia!
As the title suggests, the question we are asking here is whether the Iranian nation is a friend or foe to the West, and more specifically to Europe. The reality of the situation is that Iran does not export terror to our nations, it does not pose a threat to us militarily, and whilst its human rights record does not match our liberal European sensibilities, this is really none of our business or concern. The only reason for the current rift between Europe and Iran is because of American pressure to maintain it. Being an ally of Moscow, Iran poses a threat to the “New World Order”, or as its more accurately described, US imperialism. This is the true reason for the cold war engineered between Europe and Tehran. And as an additional point, we must not allow Israeli foreign policy to dictate our geopolitical strategy as a continent, because this will drag us into endless and pointless war in the region. War with Iran, in this case, would be incredibly detrimental to our nations, not least because the number of troops who would die for the cause would be staggering. On balance, we can clearly see that Iran is definitely not a foe. Is she a friend? Not particularly, no more so than Moscow or Beijing, but the Iranian state could be a key strategic ally for the West, especially if we come to our senses and move against the terrorist state of Saudi Arabia. One thing’s for certain: the neoconservative sabre rattling of American imperialism against Iran can only have negative outcomes for the rest of the Western world.
In a recent interview with Brittany Pettibone, English activist Tommy Robinson explained how, after a stint in prison, operatives from the British intelligence services approached him with a job proposition. They asked him to help them to ‘unite the right’, going on to explain that this would help them ‘control the response to terror attacks’ and grooming gangs – typically piss-poor behaviour by Muslims, in other words.
Whilst nobody likes a crackpot conspiracy theorist, it would be abject naivety to think the state hadn’t approached countless individuals and organisations with a similar proposition. Some, like Tommy, will have declined. Others, however, would have accepted. Additionally, there will be many individuals who by way of ideological coincidence, are already peddling the state’s preferred narrative, and thus are already in position to be manipulated to further that narrative. A great example of this in action is Nigel Farage’s rapid rise to prominence from 2009; after Nick Griffin appeared on BBC Question Time in that year, a massive poll found that 25% of Britons would consider voting for the British National Party. Coincidentally, the BBC and the print media began devoting disproportionate amounts of time and space to Nigel Farage. Why? Because the latter offers the acceptable face of British nationalism – a civic, Thatcherite face, in contrast with the BNP’s ethnic homeland brand.
After listening to Tommy recount the various approaches by the British state, it’s worth questioning everything. It’s now worth repeating our evaluations of certain individuals who are suspected of having an ulterior motive. Again, some may denounce this as conspiratorial, but not asking the question is naivety of the highest order. So when stories like Telford or Rotherham reach the mass media, take a step back and look around at the prominent respondents. Who is carrying the flag, so to speak? And I don’t mean those making noises on Twitter or YouTube, but those invited on radio shows, or primetime television talk shows. Who’s leading the response and, therefore, controlling the volume and ferocity of the response?
A brilliant case study which is almost archetypal it’s so blatant, is that of Maajid Nawaz. Nawaz is head of a British-based counter-extremism thinktank named Quilliam, which works against Islamic (and other) extremism on a domestic level. Now, after the Telford story broke recently, for a few days there was essentially radio silence. Aside from Telford MP Lucy Allen’s calls for an enquiry, nobody said anything. The story wasn’t discussed on the evening news or, when it was, the presenters were in purely fact delivery mode. They didn’t invite any representatives of civil society on to discuss this! Then, yesterday, Maajid Nawaz appeared. After a show on LBC, a clip of Nawaz decrying political correctness’ role in preventing a conversation about Muslim rape gangs went viral. He is leading the response of civil society. And of course, everything he said can be more or less agreed with by those of us concerned with the issue of grooming gangs in our societies. Yet Nawaz is a perfect example of a prominent leader of civil society being manipulated by the state to control the response.
Having Nawaz, a reformed Islamist and obviously a non-native, lead the response against grooming gangs enables the state to pacify those who quite rightly see this as a racial issue that requires a radical response. After all, you couldn’t denounce the presence of Pakistanis in your society after seeing this brave, good-looking, articulate, reformed character all over your Twitter feed, could you? Exactly. He’s your friendly cornershop immigrant who waves the card charge causing you to take the ‘they’re not all bad’ approach. In terms of the grooming gangs, people like Maajid Nawaz are there to ensure an ethnic issue is met with a civic response. Nawaz has been an excellent candidate for this role for a number of years now. Whenever there’s a terrorist attack or another scandal involving non-white immigrants, he’s invariably the face of public more indignation. He’s had columns in the New York Times, Daily Mail, The Guardian, Financial Times and The Wall St Journal, and has appeared on BBC Hardtalk, Larry King Live, 60 Minutes, Newsnight, as well as having his own show on LBC radio. He even lectures at universities and gives talks at the UK Defence Academy! For somebody who was a terrorist until the last decade, that’s pretty remarkable, right?
When I accuse him of ‘controlling the response’ I’m not even particularly convinced that he’s on some government payroll. He might be, but the more likely explanation is that he actually deeply believes in what he’s saying and what he stands for. This is an example of the state’s ideological foundation matching neatly and coincidentally with a suitable candidate from civil society. Unbeknown to Nawaz, the state is acting behind the scenes to ensure that his voice is most prominent in the aftermath of these scandals, so that it’s Nawaz leading the response and not, say, Tommy Robinson, or the National Front. I’m not saying that the latter figures should be leading the response instead, but it would be nice if the state allowed us to choose these figureheads and not have thrust upon us a foreign Muslim who, frankly, doesn’t have the same stake in the past or future of this nation as others might.
More broadly, we must begin to realise that civil society is no longer an organic formation of communities and opinions. Once upon a time, it was, That’s how the people managed to pressure government into passing no less than five laws restricting immigration between 1914-1939, yet just one in the post-war (73 years!) period. We didn’t change, but the state got wise to how public discourse really works. Governments no longer need to impose overt regulations on democracy, when they can simply manipulate civil discourse under the democratic illusion. So every time a scandal like Telford emerges, or a terrorist attack occurs, watch the response. Watch the response on day one, watch it on day three and then again after a week. Who’s the most prominent, most vocal advocate of the seemingly “radical” position? Who’s on the big radio and TV platforms? What are their motives? What does the state gain from their narrative? Most importantly, are they really representative of the Silent Majority?
Like many of my fellow Britons, I watched on in utter disbelief over the weekend as the British state adopted Orwell’s 1984 as their unofficial bible (Hello! Guys, it was a warning, not an instruction manual…). Identitäre Bewegung Österreich leader Martin Sellner and his partner, American YouTuber and conservative journalist Brittany Pettibone, were detained on Friday upon arrival in the United Kingdom. They were handcuffed, separated, their phones confiscated, and sent to detention centres amongst criminals and illegal for 48 hours awaiting deportation. Their crimes? Planning a speech which ‘might cause tension between local communities’ and ‘intending to interview Tommy Robinson, an extremist’.
After nervously laughing at the utter absurdity of being denied entry for ‘intent to interview’, I couldn’t help but feel a deep sense of anger. This anger was and remains motivated by what I can only describe as my mind’s inner injustice detector; a mechanism that almost every Briton possesses, which makes us susceptible to supporting the underdog, amongst other things. But the sheer injustice of the situation facing Britons and their European friends today goes beyond any inherent sense of moral righteousness. For the British state is operating under the grossest of double standards, when on the one hand it fails to adequately monitor the 23,000 Jihadists on our streets, fails to investigate Pakistani rape gangs in a multitude of English towns, fails to prevent 400 ISIS fighters from breaching our supposedly porous borders… YET, succeeds in detaining, interrogating and deporting young, law-abiding European citizens who happen to be Right-Wing activists.
This does give us cause for optimism. One should always judge a person, a group or an entity such as the state by its actions, as opposed to what it says. For instance, the British establishment and its left-wing media cohorts ridicules the ideas of the so-called far-right – AKA patriots concerned about their people and nation – yet is so afraid of these ideas that it feels it must prevent them from being heard by its own people at all costs.
However, this silver lining is no consolation in the present. We must face a very uncomfortable reality, namely that the United Kingdom is a totalitarian police state that imprisons and deports European political activists and imprisons dissidents at home. Of course, you can have different opinions (if you can call them that) within very limited confines. You can vote Labour, Liberal or Conservative, and you can cast your ballot in that great illusion of democracy that was the EU referendum, but the slightest noise against the state’s dystopian multi-ethnic project puts you at risk of feeling the full force of the law – or what they say the law is to suit their own ends. Either way, the outcome remains the same; you, a dissident, imprisoned, hauled before the courts and, if you’re lucky, mysteriously suicided in custody.
Now, belatedly I’d like to draw your attention to the subject matter of this article: Winston Churchill. There are as many different opinions about Churchill as there are people available to hold them, and his legacy has the ability to divide opinion on the far-left and the radical right. However, within the confines of establishment politics (Normieville) it’s safe to say that he’s a rather unifying figure. Winston Churchill, to most people, is a symbol of freedom, the man who stood defiant in the face of Nazi tyranny where those before and around him appeased and stood by. In other words, he protected this Anglo-Saxon notion of freedom, most importantly for the English people themselves.
The liberals and leftists currently occupying the annals of power in England should pause for a moment and ask themselves, what would Winston Churchill have made of their imprisonment of political dissidents and Thought Criminals seeking to exercise their freedoms? Indeed, many of them have probably never stopped to think that Churchill himself would have fallen foul of modern “hate speech” laws! After all, it was Churchill who sought to contest the 1955 General Election under the slogan ‘Keep England White’. Certainly, he would not have thanked them for their disgracefully repressive behaviour of late, and he certainly would not have approved of the multi-ethnic dystopia his successors have built in the name of his victories.
Whatever else one may say about Winston Churchill, he certainly held dear the Anglo-Saxon concept of freedom; freedom of thoughts; freedom of speech; freedom of association and freedom of expression. This includes the freedom to criticise, the freedom to harshly reproach and even, yes, the freedom to grossly offend. That there are hostile communities of Muslims in the UK at all would have offended Churchill, let alone that the state is repressing those it fears may incite them to riot on our streets and harm our citizens. And yes, perhaps it can be said that their opposition to fascism is one commonality with the erstwhile Prime Minister, yet those who the state today deems “fascist” were called ordinary moderates in his.
One certainty is that those who invoke Churchill today to impose their views – the “anti-fascists” and liberals – are charlatans who knowingly misuse the memory of a national treasure. This is a cynical ploy, of course, because they know deep down that the man is turning in his grave as Britain’s freedom seeps down into the cemetery next door. He would have been appalled at what Britain has become today, and the flagrant abuse of its citizens rights, and inevitably he would look back and wonder why on earth we fought at all.
Enoch Powell is often described as the greatest Prime Minister we never had. That is to say or imply, undoubtedly, that had he been Prime Minister of the United Kingdom he would have surpassed even Winston Churchill in the minds of those debating the greatest Briton of the 20th century. Yet outside the realms of the obvious, many still find it difficult to define ‘Powellism’, and therefore what a Britain led by Mr Powell would have looked like. Some on the right wrongly claim that he represented a more conservative strand of Thatcherism, whilst his detractors on the left claim – also wrongly – that Powell’s brand of politics was more akin to the fascists and Oswald Mosley.
Both views are, clearly, mistaken. It is true that some of Thatcher’s economic policies were inspired by the rhetoric of Enoch Powell vis-a-vis de-nationalisation, and Powell’s view of the empire and romantic nationalism could be compared with similar sentiments uttered by Mosley. Continue reading “Enoch Powell’s Britain: What If?”
Once again, we find ourselves in a bad winter for the National Health Service. The NHS has recently announced that ‘all non-urgent operations are to be cancelled this month’, which, whilst not an unusual move for the service, is far short of ideal. In fact, it suggests that the issues surrounding the NHS that have caused similar announcements in the past are showing no signs of abating, and in fact are only getting worse. The Tories blame mismanagement and economic irresponsibility on the part of the NHS bosses for this crisis, whilst Labour blame (or will do so, predictably) any problem with the health service on a lack of funding. As usual, they are both wrong.