Saturday, May 20, 2017

UC Berkeley Pits Liberalism Against ‘Islamophobia’

By Michael Lumish

{Sponsored by Campus Watch and also published at Jihad Watch and Jews Down Under. Best wishes to Robert Spencer who is recovering from a recent attempt on his life in Reykjavik.}

Fast on the heels of the University of California’s anti-free speech “Battle of Berkeley”—in which hundreds of black-clad, left-wing, “anti-fascists” attacked Trump supporters in the streets—around five hundred students and scholars attended the weekend conference “Islamophobia & The End of Liberalism?”

The concept of “Islamophobia” was created as a political device to demonize critics of Islamic supremacism. Accordingly, the conference poster featured a righteously concerned Statue of Liberty embracing a young Muslim woman in a hijab as if to protect her from xenophobic Trump supporters. The clear implication was that the Western liberal tradition requires open borders and that Muslims as people, rather than jihadis as ideologues, are threatened by fellow Americans.

The fundamental question posed at UC Berkeley was whether “Islamophobia” represents a betrayal of the tradition of Enlightenment liberalism or its imperial, racist fulfillment. This query hovered over the eighth annual conference organized by Hatem Bazian, director of the University’s Islamophobia Research & Documentation Project, who blasted what he called “Trumpism.” Surprisingly, the participants from universities around the world did not settle for a pat answer.

Adnan Husain of Queen’s University in Canada argued that the "liberal concept of multiculturalism" is undermined by contemporary forms of aggressive, white, Western "crusaderism."

In a talk entitled "Liberal Islamophobia,” the University of Denver’s Nader Hashemi asserted that Hillary Clinton is anti-Muslim because during the 2016 presidential campaign she claimed that moderate Muslims represent a bulwark against “violent extremism.” In doing so, she allegedly reduced the American Muslim community into little more than a foreign-policy tool of the U.S. government.

Raja Abdulhaq, a graduate student in international affairs at Brooklyn College, claimed that the goal of white Western liberals was to transform Muslims into "carbon copies" of themselves.

Meanwhile, Long Island University philosopher Shaireen Rasheed maintained that the so-called "Western gaze" reduces Islam to a thing in need of reform, according to the standards of white Western cultural hegemony.

Thus, liberal concerns over terrorism, Sharia law, or the European immigration crisis are reduced to attempts to control, formalize, and channel Western Muslim identities into alienating, indoctrinating, and inauthentic white liberal molds.

When one asks if terrorism and Islamic supremacism inspire Western anti-Muslim bigotry, the response is to accuse the questioner of “Islamophobia.” The problem, we are to believe, is not terrorism or the spread of Islamic supremacism into Europe. On the contrary, according to the general attitude of the conference, these are merely the natural responses of a people oppressed under the weight of voracious white, Western, racist, colonialist, imperialist aggression.

In other words, the real problem is not Osama Bin Laden, but George W. Bush and Donald Trump.

What is perhaps most disconcerting about the conference was the tendency to embrace anti-Semitic anti-Zionism while claiming to oppose ethnic prejudice. A perfect example of this was the use of anti-Semitic cartoonist Carlos Latuff to promote the event. Latuff specializes in demonizing Israeli Jews as violently inhumane creatures in much the same way the Nazis did with European Jews in the early to mid-twentieth-century. This is akin to promoting racist caricatures of African-Americans while professing to fight racism. It is inconceivable that Bazian and other conference organizers would use Latuff’s vile work unknowingly. Their actions reveal their intent to legitimize anti-Semitism by using it at a UC Berkeley event ostensibly dedicated to fighting racism.

Ultimately, UC Berkeley’s “Islamophobia” conference contradicted itself in at least two ways. Foremost was the morally reprehensible act of espousing anti-Semitism in order to combat anti-Muslim bigotry. The other was its insistence that the larger Muslim world, comprised of 1.6 billion people, about one-quarter of the world’s population, are fundamentally victims of aggressive Europeans imperial excess. Centuries of Muslim empire-building aside, playing the victim card simply allows Bazian and his colleagues to continue their aggressions against the West under the guise of moral purity.

Friday, May 19, 2017

The Galling Hypocrisy of Jewish Trump Haters

Michael Lumish

This is basically a note to a Facebook acquaintance who specializes in advancing the "progressive-left" Wall of Hatred.

Part of what bothers me about the current conversation around Trump and Jews and Israel is the never-ending blatant hypocrisy.

In fact, what pisses me off about the nature of the conversation now is the very same thing that pissed me off about the nature of the conversation when Obama was in office.

That is, while Obama was running "the show" in the United States most Jews didn't really care that he supported the Muslim Brotherhood, despite the fact that the Brotherhood called for the conquest of Jerusalem which is nothing less than calling for an Arab genocide of the Jews of the Middle East.

Per my ongoing conversation with Jonathan Eron I want to say loud and clear that, yes, Barack Obama did, in fact, support the Muslim Brotherhood. Eron, and not for the first time, has called me a liar for saying so, but the historical record on this matter is clear.

Barack Obama supported the Muslim Brotherhood.

Here is a quote from The Atlantic in a June 3, 2009, article written by Marc Ambinder entitled,"'Brotherhood' Invited To Obama Speech By U.S."

Ambinder writes:

"A sign that the Obama administration is willing to publicly challenge Egypt's commitment to parliamentary democracy: various Middle Eastern news sources report that the administration insisted that at least 10 members of the Muslim Brotherhood, the country's chief opposition party, be allowed to attend his speech in Cairo on Thursday."

This, of course, represents just one small way in which the Obama administration supported an organization that, itself, supported the Nazis.

So, for those of you who despise Trump but enjoyed getting violated by Barack Obama, here is a clue:

The more that people like you shit all over Donald Trump the more I like the guy.

There are a few reasons for this. One is the obvious hypocrisy of your position. You honestly do not care that Obama supported the Muslim Brotherhood despite the fact that the Brotherhood has been screaming for the genocide of the Jews since the time of  Hassan al-Banna and Sayyid Qutb who wrote "Our Struggle Against the Jews."

Anyway, let's start a list and we can add to it each time that you spread around your toxic hatred.

1) Obama supported the Brotherhood.

2) Obama lobbied for UN 2334 which robs the Jewish people of our patrimony on the land of our ancestors.

And, for the moment, let's add:

3) Obama supported the empowerment of Iran and normalized their gaining of nuclear weaponry within the coming few years.

But the thing of it is since I know that Eron and the Haters are doing everything they possibly can to derail this presidency no matter what he does, it creates considerable sympathy in my heart for the guy.

So, I have to say, you're doing a terrific job.

I did not vote for either Trump or Hillary, but now I am beginning to wish that I had voted for Trump out of sympathy for the poor bastard due to the fact that poisonous wretches puke vomit on him on a daily basis.

From where I sit, by throwing such garbage at the guy continually you have essentially immunized him from criticism.


Monday, May 15, 2017

This Week on Nothing Left

Michael Lumish

Nothing Left

This week Michael and Alan speak with radio personality, satirist, documentary maker and author John Safran about his new book, "Depends What You Mean By Extremist", and then catch up with Dr Bernie Power, the moderator from last week's public debate Social Justice: Israel Palestine.

We hear from Anastasia, the author of a new pro-Israel cartoon called Zionist Pugs, and then speak with Omri Ceren from The Israel Project. And Isi Leibler has his say as usual from Jerusalem.

3 min Editorial: Debate on Israel-Palestine

9 min John Safran on his new book

37 min Dr Bernie Power, moderator of the debate

53 min Anastasia, creator of Zionist Pugs cartoon

1 hr 9 Omni Ceren, The Israel Project

1 hr 32    Isi Leibler in Jerusalem speaking about Ronald Lauder

The podcast can also be found on the J-Air website.

Or its Facebook page.

NOTHING LEFT can be heard live each Tuesday 9-11am on FM 87.8 in the Caulfield area, or via the J-Air website

Contact us at Nothing Left:

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Professor Astren Comes Through

Michael Lumish

I owe Fred Astren an apology.

He finally stood up publicly.

I was hasty in earlier judgments... but I sometimes tend to be hasty.

I imagine that I will have a few more words concerning this in the weeks to come, but it is vitally important for our local leadership to make a hard stand when necessary.

Good for Professor Astren.

Marc Dollinger and Fred Astren
After six face-to-face meetings over the course of a year with San Francisco State University President Leslie Wong, we are obliged to report that there is no resolution in sight for problems plaguing Jewish student life on campus.

The history of conflict involving Jews at S.F. State is not a new story, but the inability or unwillingness of the university administration to speak out and act in the face of the marginalization of Jewish students is bewildering and alarming.
Read the rest.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Are we obsessing too much over Palestinian terror?

Sar Shalom

No, I'm not suggesting that we should in any way accept the terror or turn the other cheek as it happens, or as Abbas disburses Euro-American money to its perpetrators. To get at what I'm asking, consider three scenarios:
  1. A bank executive embezzles money to support a local soup kitchen.
  2. A bank executive embezzles money to endow a local chapter of the Aryan Nation.
  3. A bank executive donates from his salary to endow a local chapter of the Aryan Nation.
We should all agree that all three of those are reprehensible or nefarious. However, they are nefarious in different ways. Case 1 involves noble ends pursued by nefarious means. Case 3 involves fully innocent means for a nefarious end. In both cases, it is clear what the public response should be. In the former case, the executive should be censured for his means, and in the latter case for the cause he supports. However, Case 2 presents nefarious means being used for nefarious ends. This presents a challenge in responding because focusing too much on the means allows a perception that the cause might have been acceptable, while focusing too much on the ends allows a perception that the means were not too bad.

Such is the case with the PA. In today's links at Elder of Ziyon, there are 3 articles dealing with reactions to the PA's war against Israel, all dealing with the PA's support for terror. It is true that the terrorism emanating from Palestinian society, with full support from the PA, is nefarious. However, calling attention exclusively to their reliance on terror would be like censuring the executive in Case 2 for the embezzlement in a way that suggests that if he supported the Aryan Nation with his own money that there would have been no problem. In the case of the Palestinians' war against Israel, focusing on terror exclusively suggests that if their objectives were pursued peacefully, such as through BDS, that it would be totally acceptable.

What we need to highlight is, contrary to the PA's useful idiots' belief that the PA's [objective is] to build a free society for the Palestinian people, their goal is to end Jewish self-determination in the Middle East. The reality is that the illegitimacy of the PA's means is deeply connected to the illegitimacy of their ends. If they truly desired nothing more than freedom for their people, Israel would vote for a government that would give it to them. However, Israelis are no longer fooled by Abbas' forked tongue and thus will not willingly cede a more favorable ground from which to pursue an end of Israel, hence the reliance on terror to impose costs for not doing so. One person who does get the significance of the PA's aims is Moshe Sharon. Instead of asking for a demand that Abbas stop paying the terrorists, Sharon asks Trump to tell Abbas to “ 'Go back to Ramallah, stand up in public and give a speech saying the Palestinian people recognize Israel as a Jewish state.' In Arabic.”

Instead of issuing threats over the PA's support for terror and ignoring the denial of the right of the Jews to self-determination, we should issue threats over the PA's denial of the Jews' right to self-determination and complain about their support for terror.

UPDATE: Missing words were added, indicated by brackets.

The Left is Deliberalizing

Michael Lumish

The point is key.

This is a note that I wrote to a Facebook "friend":
It seems to me - as someone who spent 25 years as a Democrat on the progressive-left - that the American Right should not allow the Democrats and the Left to keep the word "liberal." I'm just making an argument over semantics, but I think that it is important. This is particularly true since the Left is in the process of shedding its liberalism, anyway.

The American Left is trading universal human rights for the multicultural ideal. That is the process that they have been undergoing since 9/11. They are, as we see in the streets of Paris and Berkeley, throwing the tradition of Enlightenment liberalism into the toilet. Thus western-feminists no longer care about women's rights under Islam. They no longer care about freedom of speech if that speech contradicts their ideological worldview. To be liberal is to oppose racism, yet the progressive-left is the most racist political ideology in the west today outside of political Islam.

Because the Left is in the process of deliberalization, the Right should take up the mantle of Enlightenment liberalism.

I am not a Republican, but if you want the American center, stand with the tradition of Western Enlightenment Liberalism.

Let the other side stand with Black Lives Matter and Sharia-fan, Linda Sarsour.

We will stand with Thomas Jefferson and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

This Week on Nothing Left

Michael Lumish

Nothing Left
This week Michael and Alan catch up on world events with Ahron Shapiro, senior policy analyst with AIJAC; then hear from Mohr Wenger, the tourist who was refused service at a body piercing shop in Cairns because she was Israeli.

They discuss the Balfour Declaration with Daniel Taub, former Israeli ambassador to the UK who is visiting Australia, and then hear from Israeli scholar on Islam, Mordechai Kedar.

And Isi Leibler talks about the German Foreign Minister who wanted to contact hostile Israeli NGOs, and who PM Netanyahu refused to meet.

3 min Editorial: Yassmin Abdel-Magied

10 min Ahron Shapiro, AIJAC

29 min Mohr Wenger, Israeli tourist in Cairns anti -Israel controversy

51 min Daniel Taub, former Israeli ambassador to UK

1:13     Mordechai Kedar, Israeli scholar on Islam

1:32     Isi Leibler, Jerusalem

The podcast can also be found on the J-Air website.

Or its Facebook page.

NOTHING LEFT can be heard live each Tuesday 9-11am on FM 87.8 in the Caulfield area, or via the J-Air website

Contact us at Nothing Left:

Monday, May 1, 2017

Of Yom Haatzmaut past

Sar Shalom

For me, one of the most moving celebrations of Yom Haatzmaut was from the 62nd Yom Haatzmaut in 2010 on Mount Hertzl. The particularly moving parts were when the speaker recited Psalms 137 and 126 immediately followed by a dance performance as a chorus sang a song written to the tune of the chorus Va pensiero from Verdi's Nabucco. The significance of Psalms 137 and 126 are obvious in terms of the connection of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel, the former of mourning for its loss and the latter of celebrating the return. However, the opera chorus requires some background. The original tune reflects reflects Italian nationalism from the mid-nineteenth century—expressed as Italians yearning for a free country in the manner of the Hebrew exiles in Babylon yearning to return to Zion.

Using that tune hearkens back to a time when the connection between the Jewish people and the Land of Israel was a given in European consciousness. Drawing on that theme, the Israeli version combines the themes of Psalms 137 and 126, starting with recollection of the time in exile as in the line "Kinnorot b'dimah cheresh talinu (We hung our harps in tears and silence)." It continues with anticipation of redemption, "N'nucham b'vinyan migdaleha (We will be comforted in the building of her towers)," and finishes with the return of the exiles, "V'yashuvu p'zureha k'vatchilla b'shirat g'ulla (And her scattered ones will return as in the beginning with a song of redemption)."