Tag: Anti-Semitism

An Enemy By Any Other Name

 

We enter parliament in order to supply ourselves, in the arsenal of democracy, with its own weapons. If democracy is so stupid as to give us free tickets and salaries for this bear’s work, that is its affair. We do not come as friends, nor even as neutrals. We come as enemies. As the wolf bursts into the flock, so we come. — Joseph Goebbels, on Democracy

A few weeks ago, my country of Sweden got a new government. Or, it’s not so much a new government, but a return to a past I had hoped was long forgotten. Chances are most outsiders wouldn’t have heard of this electoral upheaval, had it not been for one of the new government’s first forays into foreign policy: recognizing the state of Palestine, making it the first major European country to do so. But for those of familiar with Sweden’s the political landscape, this has been a long time coming.

From the “Any More Such Victories and We Are Doomed” Department

 

shutterstock_27568873The Modern Language Association is the latest academic group attempting to pass a resolution condemning Israel for things that it doesn’t like. This is being done because the organization has an interest in pretending that it is good, righteous, and filled with God’s noblest creatures, and it feels that the best way to pursue this particular interest is to take a publicly anti-Zionist stance. Readers will, of course, wonder why the MLA doesn’t try to demonstrate its uprightness by adopting resolutions condemning the actions of the governments of China, Russia, Iran, and various other nation-states where repression and inhumanity are woven into the fabric of public policy. Don’t hold your breath.

The Modern Language Association has utterly bizarre voting rules that allow for the adoption of resolutions with the approval of a mere 10 percent of the association’s active population. When the resolution was put to a vote, however, it only garnered 6.5 percent approval, with 4.4 percent voting against it. As anti-Zionist showings go, this one is rather pathetic. You would think that it would be easy to find enough people within academia to speak out against Israeli policies with a vehemence not found in the condemnations of any other country (assuming that an effort is even made to condemn anyone else. But the MLA couldn’t even find 10 percent. Wow.

So, this was a pretty cataclysmic defeat for supporters of the resolution, right? Well, amazingly enough (or not, given this particular group’s lack of attachment to reality), that’s not how they see it:

A Violent Weekend

 

Let us begin our tour with a quarrel in a faraway country. As Yahoo Japan reports, “A Vietnamese fishing vessel has sunk after being rammed by a Chinese vessel and the 10 fishermen have been rescued. While Vietnam has not responded yet, the Coast Guard warned “the situation at the site it very tense.”‘

This is not an isolated incident, but rather an escalation of recent tensions. It is most likely a response to last week’s announcement of cooperation between Vietnam and Japan, which followed the Chinese “deploying an oil rig off the Paracel Islands, which Vietnam also claims, leading to physical clashes between Chinese and Vietnamese vessels.”

John Mearsheimer is Sober, Level-Headed, and Clear-Thinking . . . Except When He Isn’t

 

I recommend to everyone this piece on the present and expected future interplay between China, Taiwan and the United States written by my former professor, John Mearsheimer. It is exceedingly well-written, very hard-headed, and reveals that Mearsheimer has done his homework when it comes to the history of China and Taiwan. It doesn’t make for comfortable reading if one is Taiwanese, American, or a member of any Asian country that seeks to offset or balance against Chinese hegemony in Asia, but, if anything, the unsettling nature of the piece makes it all the more important.

Speaking of well-written Mearsheimerian articles, check out this recent one on the crisis concerning Russia and Ukraine, and the state of American policymaking. Again, Mearsheimer lays out the facts persuasively, accurately gauges each side’s interests and bargaining power, and then offers policy prescriptions that demonstrate a realistic understanding of the situation at play.