I was not going to write about the blog-inspired Euston Manifesto but note that it's gaining some public traction, which depresses the hell out of me - political luvvies such as John Lloyd, Paul Berman and Michael Walzer are coming out in its support. I once considered myself a liberal lefty, like them, so it feels weird now believing that the ideology espoused by the authors of the Euston Manifesto is delusional and dangerous, but I do. The phrase, 'longest suicide-note in history' springs to mind, with the associated idea of it being a dying croak of a moribund worldview, and, were it so, I would pity these poor people's cognitive confusion. Unfortunately, their beliefs are neither marginal nor, as they claim, "under-represented" - on the contrary, they are the mainstream beliefs of the ruling class, who continue to lead us into disaster. Tony Blair, David Cameron, Ming Campbell, and any and all of their successors, Chirac, Sarkozy, Merkel, Barroso, Mandelson, Rice, Kerry, Obama, McCain, Bush, etc., etc., could all affirm the manifesto's core beliefs. Their fellow-travellers pump out their propaganda relentlessly through the print and broadcast (and now web-based) media, and in the schools and universities,
all most of which they effectively control. But their beliefs, which are the prevailing hegemony in the West, are at odds with reality and in conflict with human nature and reason. I wish I smelled the whiff of revolution in the air.
The Euston Manifesto is an intoxicating brew of humanism, Americanist liberalism and Zionism, a concoction dangerous to the young and vulnerable, which the human species still is. Just when the world requires post-humanist, post-liberalist and post-Zionist responses to its current troubles, some of which have been caused by the implementation of humanism, liberalism and Zionism, the Eustonites can only offer up more of the same. I want to mention three areas where I radically disagree with the manifesto.
I am pro-humans and pro-civil liberties, and therefore I am anti-human rights. The writers of the manifesto allege that opponents of human-rights ideology are cultural relativists, whereas I oppose human-rights ideology because it endangers all human cultures, including our own. Where human-rights ideology advances, civil liberties and cultural pluralism retreat. Human rights is a pernicious doctrine, fallaciously reasoned, and its adherents are like brainwashed cultists, believing that their credo is universally true and that all the world should join their cult or be demonized, invaded or killed. (I used to be a human-rights cultist but have since deprogrammed myself.) The manifesto says that the so-called Universal Declaration should be binding on everyone - if that's not fascistic and totalitarian I don't know what is. The whole sorry, violent, virulent doctrine should be consigned to history's wastebin before it kills us all.
1. Following from the above, the UN must disentangle its core and valid business - diplomacy and humanitarianism - from the ideological baggage of human rights, and jettison the latter completely. Otherwise, it becomes more and more perceived as the enemy of free humanity. It was no surprise when Zarqawi blew up the UN HQ in Baghdad - whatever its self-perception, the UN is not a neutral agency, but it should endeavour to become so.
2. Britain and the US contravened the will of the security council by invading Iraq - both should lose their veto for at least five years. Britain and the US set up the UN - of all nations, they, we, should follow the agreed rules and accept the penalty for breaking our contract with the other nations.
3. The Euston Manifesto lauds the outrageous 'responsibility to protect' doctrine, which is now official UN policy thanks to the Americans, the British and their, our, mind-warped allies. The doctrine eviscerates the notion of national sovereignty - whoever controls the security council will decide whose sovereignty is valid and whose is not. It's a recipe for chaos and for the collapse of international structures such as the UN.
The authors and supporters of the manifesto might accept the designations 'Zionist left' or 'liberal Zionists', for the themes of Zionism, Israel/Palestine and what they term anti-semitism pervade their document. No statements of principle about the two Koreas, or Kashmir, but there's one on the 'two-state solution'. Zionism is the elephant in the corner of this manifesto, which needs to be metaphorically shot, beheaded, stuffed and mounted on the wall above the fireplace.
Labels. Semiotics. Floating signifiers. I am pro-Jewish, pro-Arab, pro-Muslim and pro-Christian, and therefore I am anti-Zionist. Zionism, in my book, is the antithesis of Judaism, and its fruit, which they call Israel, is the living embodiment of anti-semitism. Real Jews, whose reputation is unfairly tarred by the Zionist pretenders, wait patiently for the coming of the Messiah. They have kept to the covenant with G-d, and they are the true people of Israel. The Zionists, on the other hand, lost patience with G-d, exile and persecution and took matters into their own hands. As if they were the Messiah, they called the Jews out of exile and back to the Holy Land and many followed, their minds addled by the traumas they had undergone in Europe. They exiled the Palestinians from their lands, which the real Messiah would not do. They blasphemously gave their secular state a holy name, Israel, which only adds divine insult to the injury of breaking the covenant. They label their critics anti-Semites, yet the people who suffer most from the follies of Zionism are the Arabs in the region and the true Jews, both of whom have greater claim to be Semites than do the Zionists.
Enough already. The manifesto must be opposed by all true democrats.