Friday, September 01, 2006

Pilger Goes Mad

As a young leftie, I had a number of heroes: George Orwell, Paul Foot, and John Pilger. Pilger, in particular, I admired as an incorruptible reporter, exposing the crimes of British, American, and Australian racism and imperialism... there came a point (a few years ago), when I decided that my hero was...a prat.

It came, I think, when he started to praise for the "resistance" in Iraq: I thought, "these people are Islamo-fascists", gynophobes, homophobes, anti-semites, and inter-Islamic sectarians: yet Pilger supports them? I couldn't believe it! This man, who - for me- had always stood for human decency, now seemed to be backing Islamofascism? Unbelievable! Yet it seems he does. Including the vicious anti-semites Hesbullah. much the same can be said about a once-respect-worthy leftist, Tony Benn; - who now does the rounds of the "Stop the War Coalition" meetings, claiming that Osama Bin Ladin is "comparable" with Nelson Mandella . And now that once-great journalist John Pilger, now seems to be on the side of then Islamo-Fascists!

This jerk's anti-American / anti Israeli racism is now even so all-pervasive that he mistakes a British middle class pensioner, who went to the bourgeois courts regarding the withdrawal of GP services, and won her case - Pat Smith- for an anti-imperialist "freedom fighter":

"There is no difference in principle between Pat Smith's campaign of resistance and that of of the people of Cochabamba who refuse to pay almost half their income to an American company for their water. There is no difference in principle between the people's movement that saw off the Israeli invaders and the strirring of people everywhere as they become aware of the real meaning of the ambitions and hypocrisy of Bush and his vassal, who want us to to be ever fearful of and cowed by "terrorism" (note the scare quotes: presumably, there's no such thing as "terrorism" -JD) when, in truth, the greatest terrorists, are all of them.

And if you want to read and hear more such utter bollocks, then attend the "John Pilger Film Festival" at the Barbican, London, from 14-21 September.


Anonymous jules said...

Jaysus Grim, what a diatribe, even by your standards!

First of all Tony Benn does not liken Bin Laden to Nelson Mandella and you know that is the case.

As for Pilger - has he embraced Islamism or does he support the right of people to resist the sort of brutal imperialist violence he has spent his life opposing?

And are you seriously suggesting that Hizbullah are a "terrorist" organisation? If so, then such an opinion is no better than Thatcher's description of the ANC as a terrorist organisation imo.

12:15 PM  
Blogger voltaires_priest said...

You think Hezbollah are the same as the ANC, Jules?


2:32 PM  
Blogger stroppybird said...


Now you know we are all hezbollah now :-)

3:55 PM  
Blogger voltaires_priest said...

Yeah - apart from those of us who are Socialists, Democrats, non-anti-semites, etc etc :D:D:D

4:00 PM  
Anonymous Boogski said...

Jim said:

This jerk's anti-American / anti Israeli racism...

Please God, make Liberals stop equating every fucking thing they don't like in this world with "racism". Israelis aren't a "race" any more than Americans or Muslims. And no, Volty. Muslims are not a race, in spite of your valiant attempts to portray them as such.

5:07 PM  
Blogger voltaires_priest said...

Boogster, racism directed against Arabs as South Asians as "Muslims" is racism, whether the word being used is "Muslim" or not.

12:21 AM  
Anonymous jules said...

Yes VP I think Hizbullah are currently the government of South Africa and the ANC are rebuilding southern Lebanon.

Or rather not.

The point is not that they are the "same", but to an extent they are cut from the same cloth: two liberation movements with mass based support fighting popular causes against racist and imperialist oppression.

What I am arguing is that people who describe Hizbullah as "terrorists" are no better than the people who called the ANC "terrorists", its really shameful behaviour for a socialist.

2:44 AM  
Blogger voltaires_priest said...

Don't be obtuse Jules - as we both know, I meant "the same" in political charater. Which they plainly are not. One being a democratic, multi-ethnic movement for national liberation (that's the ANC btw) and the other being a Shia theocratic group, albeit one that's garnered support beyond its cultural base. Ergo, not the same thing.

Personally, I don't actually have any interest in marching about yelling that Hezb are "terrorists". However it does irk me when people come up with asinine and fantasy-led "analyses" of that movement, that are patent nonsense. You might want Hezb to be the ANC de nos jours, but they clearly aren't, and no amount of cloud-cuckoo land characterisation of them is going to change that.

"We are all Hebollah"? Bollocks. Some of us are socialists.

3:14 AM  
Blogger stroppybird said...

""We are all Hebollah"? Bollocks. Some of us are socialists"

And I would add some of us still want a secular socialist world .

2:52 PM  
Anonymous Anti-Imperialist Andy said...

Hey Jules -

Yeah, the ANC are cool.

I particularly liked the bit where they privatised South Africa's water supply. That was ace.

Hezbollah are pretty wicked, too. That stuff about "gathering all the Jews in Israel so we can kill them all at once"? Fucking diamond.

Like you say - they're anti-imperialist, innit?

And being honest, it would be a bit much to expect brown people to develop much more than a Stalinist (South Africa) or Islamist (Lebanon) consciousness. Gotta be realistic.

Or not. Twat.

2:48 PM  
Blogger Jim Denham said...

In fairness to Tony Benn (and because this blog may become an important historical source...), I should put it on record that I wasn't being 100% precise when I stated that he directly compares bin Laden/al-Qaida with Mandela/ANC: what he *does* say in what seems to be his standard speech these days is something along the lines of "people who are called terrorists usually end up being called freedom fighters and even being recognised as statesmen. It happened to Nelson Mandela and I've no doubt it will happen to those being denounced as 'terrorists' at the moment" you can draw your own conclusions. At a meeting I attended recently, Benn *did* make a direct comparison between the "Iraqi resistance" (undifferenciated) and the ANC.

9:03 AM  
Blogger voltaires_priest said...

and because this blog may become an important historical source...

Oh, it will. "Source" of what though, that's the question ;-)

2:31 PM  

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