By Gilad Atzmon
In my latest book, Being in Time – a Post Political Manifesto, I explored different tactics used by the New Left – a loose collective of Frankfurt School graduates — to destroy political diversity and intellectual exchange. I concluded that the ‘new order’ is maintained by ensuring that so-called ‘correctness’ dominates our vocabulary. We are drowning in jargon, slogans and sound bites designed to suppress authentic thinking and more important, to suppress humane intellectual exchange. As I finished writing the book, I understood that this new language is a well-orchestrated attempt to obliterate our Western Athenian ethos in favor of a new Jerusalemite regime of ‘correctness.’
Yesterday I was interviewed by Pakistani Journalist Tazeen Hasan. She was interested in my take on Islamophobia. Hasan, I guess, expected me to denounce Islamophobia. Since I am opposed to any form of bigotry*, hatred of Muslims is no exception. Though I am obviously troubled and strongly disagree with the views that are voiced with the so-called ‘Islamophbes,’ I am also troubled by the notion of ‘Islamophobia’. As opposed to the Identitarian Left, I contend that we humans should seek what unites us as humans. We should refuse to be shoved into biologically oriented (like gender, skin colour, sexual orientation etc.) boxes. I was probably expected to criticise Islamophobia by recycling a few tired slogans, but that was not my approach to the question. Instead of dealing with ‘Islamophobia,’ I decided that we should first dissect the notion of ‘phobia.’ I asked why some activists attribute ‘phobic’ inclinations (Islamophobia, homophobia, Judeophobia, etc.) to those with whom they disagree.
‘Phobia’ is defined as an extreme or irrational fear of or aversion to something. Accordingly, the notion of ‘Islamophobia,’ attributes irrationality or even madness to those who oppose Muslims and Islam. It suggests that ‘fear of Islam’ is an irrational hatred. This turns Islamophobia into a crazy fear of Islam that doesn’t deserve intellectual scrutiny, let alone an intellectual debate.
But fear of Musilms might be rational. As things stand, we in the West have been actively engaged in the destruction of Muslims and their countries for at least a century. We plunder their resources, we invade their lands, and we even gave some of their land to the so called ‘people of the book,’ and when those people committed a brutal ethnic cleansing, consistent with their ‘book,’ the West turned a blind eye. For the last three decades this genocidal war against Muslims and Arabs has intensified and become an official Western policy. This transition is the achievement of the Neocon school, who have attempted to redefine Zionism as the struggle for a promised planet instead of just a promised land.
Within the context of the global war we have declared on Muslims and Arabs on behalf of Zion, in the name of Coca Cola and Gay Rights, it is rational to expect that at some point Muslims may retaliate. So those who fear Muslims are not necessarily crazy or mad, they may even be more ethically aware or even guilt ridden than the progressives who castigate them for having ‘phobias’.’ If we are looking to dismantle ‘Islamic danger’ then we should find a rational and peaceful solution to the war we declared on Muslims. It will be probably more effective not to drop bombs on Arabs than to label fear of Muslims as irrational. Obliterating Israel’s nuclear facilities could also be a reasonable path to peace. A total embargo on Israel would probably be the most effective way to calm the Middle East. That would certainly induce some deep thinking in the Jewish State that has been the catalyst in this developing global war.
It seems the term ‘phobia’ is routinely attached to anyone who disagrees with the new order. Are all those who oppose gay rights driven by ‘phobia’? Is it really ‘irrational’ for pious people (Christians, Muslims and Jews, etc.) to detect that gay culture may interfere with their churches or family values? Instead of addressing these conservative concerns, the New Left prefers to employ tyrannical abusive language designed to delegitimise the opposition. Similarly, those who look into organised Jewry and its political lobbying are reduced to ‘Judeophobes.’ But given the growing number of studies of the domineering effect of the Jewish Lobby in the USA, Britain and France, is it really ‘irrational’ or an act of ‘madness’ to scrutinise this lobby’s activity and the culture that fuels it?
However, in spite of these Orwellian ‘phobic’ tactics, awareness of its effects has grown. Increasingly, people see that the New Left corrosive agenda is driving these divisive Identitarian tactics. The tyrannical regime of correctness is a Machiavellian operation that in the name of ‘diversity,’ attempts to eliminate diversity all together. It dismisses the concerns of the so called ‘enemy’ by labelling them as irrational fears.
My message here is simple. The war against us is facilitated by cultural means. We are constantly subjected to terminological manipulations. To win this war we must first spot the terminological shifts as they appear. Then we have to identify those who put such manipulative tactics into play.
Kevin Barrett’s review of Atzmon’s article;
In his new article “Silencing Diversity in the Name of Diversity” Gilad Atzmon argues Frankfurt School driven identity politics represents “a well-orchestrated attempt to obliterate our Western Athenian ethos in favor of a new Jerusalemite regime of ‘correctness.’”
In the new article, Gilad writes:
‘Phobia’ is defined as an extreme or irrational fear of or aversion to something. Accordingly, the notion of ‘Islamophobia,’ attributes irrationality or even madness to those who oppose Muslims and Islam….But fear of Muslims might be rational. As things stand, we in the West have been actively engaged in the destruction of Muslims and their countries for at least a century.”
Gilad’s point—that we need to distinguish rational from irrational elements of Islamophobia, Judeophobia, homophobia, etc.—is well taken. But if we accept his invitation and ask ourselves “how rational is the Islamophobia around us” we discover that it is almost entirely irrational. While the West has indeed been “actively engaged in the destruction of Muslims,” the chances that any given Western person will suffer or die in a Muslim revenge attack are essentially zero. (Terrorism is statistically a non-threat, far less dangerous than bathtubs and lightning, and Muslims commit less than 5% of the terrorist attacks in the West.) An American who fears Muslims because the West has been destroying Muslims is just as crazy as an American who fears Native Americans or Blacks or Chinese or Hindus or Buddhists because of the crimes of the West against those groups.
It is, of course, conceivable that some Muslim or Muslims (or Native Americans, Blacks, Hindus, Buddhists, etc.) will one day manage to wreak such massive revenge against the West, perhaps though a bioweapon targeting white people, that in retrospect fear of whichever group the “terrorist” emerged from will seem rational. But obviously hating on people today will not prevent such an attack tomorrow! On the contrary, it will make it more likely. Considered rationally, the Islamophobic discourse, which is actually a discourse of hate more than fear, is obviously counterproductive in terms of defusing the rather vague, nebulous, and improbable potential threats that might emerge from “angry Muslims” (or angry Native Americans, Hindus, Buddhists, etc.)
While ordinary Western people have no rational reason for Islamophobia, Zionist and neoliberal elites have good reasons to fear Islam. Muslims are the backbone of opposition to Zionism and usury, both of which are crucial to the neoliberal financier elites. To the extent that Islam triumphs, the Zionists and usury banksters will lose their ill-gotten gains along with most of their power and privileges. So the Zionist elite’s decision to orchestrate 9/11 in order to brainwash ordinary people into irrationally hating Islam was indeed rational, given that elite’s desire to maintain and expand its power and privileges.