Lies, Obfuscation and Utter Nonsense

August 9, 2008 at 10:01 pm (TWP)

I have been on holiday in the States until recently and was made aware of the ongoing slug fest on this blog upon my return. Today I attended a session at the CPGB’s Communist University on Iran where George Binette from Permanent Revolution and Yassamine Mather from the WLU Iran spoke. I thought the discussion that followed was informative, thoughtful and useful to everyone there but also for the left in general. The question of how best to oppose both imperialism and the Iranian regime was discussed with George arguing much along the same lines as Yassamine – that it was imperative that the Iranian working class allied to movements like the students movement in Iran not only oppose imperialism but actually move directly to taking power in Iran and create a socialist society. Yassamine made the very astute observation that any attempt to support a halfway house regime would surely mean the defeat of the Iranian working class.

After the meeting I read a copy of a leaflet that the AWL were handing out beforehand and was astonished, though not altogether surprised, at its level of incoherence, vitriol and plain lies. Luckily they have printed it on their website so I will simply link to it here rather than have to plod through transcribing the thing. Here’s the link: http://www.workersliberty.org/story/2008/08/09/no-%E2%80%9Cmullahs-bomb%E2%80%9D

There are so many falsehoods in this statement that it is nigh impossible to know where to begin. Let me start by attempting to tease out what the AWL is trying to do here. It was clear to me upon having had a chance to sit down and have a look at the various articles being published that something like the following happened. The AWL made a comment to the effect that it would not condemn a military strike against Iran to take out its nuclear facilities or to stop it from obtaining nuclear capability. Members of the CPGB who are in HOPI wrote in their paper that the only conceivable way to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities would be for Israel to use a nuclear weapon. Was this intended to be sensationalist? Yes I think it was. Is it a lie that conventional weaponry does not have the ability to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities? No it is not a lie. Did the AWL follow thier original statement to its logical conclusion and realise that they were de-facto supporting a nuclear strike on Iran? Probably not until the CPGB pointed it out.

Publishing this with a front page headline in the Weekly Worker and a picture of an H-Bomb was intended to provoke the AWL into responding and it worked. What the AWL is attempting to do is similarly sieze on statements in HOPI’s founding document and supposedly take it to its logical conclusion just as the CPGB has done with its statement on an Israeli military strike and I’m afraid the AWL has failed miserably.

They claim that the statement which says “The tasks of the anti-war movement in Britain and HOPI is threefold. One to fight against any imperialist attack on Iran and support the Iranian peoples right to defend themselves by any means necessary.” This is enough, say the AWL, to prove that members of HOPI “disguise their political capitulation to the clerical fascist regime” and are also by extension “vicarious Iranian or Islamic chauvinists”.

How do they make such a fantastic leap? They claim that the statement “by any means necessary” as applied to the Iranian masses is in actuality a smokescreen for HOPI defending not only the Iranian regime but its supposed “right” to have nuclear weapons. They claim what we really mean – as opposed to what HOPI actually says – is that we want the Iranian regime to acquire nuclear weapons. This is a complete and utter lie. In fact, anyone is free to look at the reports and even videos from HOPI’s founding conference where this specific question was debated rather vigorously. Those who were there will recall that Stuart King from Permanent Revolution actually retracted his remarks after the meeting when he put forward a line which his organisation disagreed with that came close to defending Iran’s so-called right to have nuclear weapons. This was explicitly rejected by those at the founding conference.

In addition, Moshe Machover wanted to make it undeniably our position and pushed for the adoption of the second part of HOPI’s founding statement that the AWL claim is also not what we really mean. Moshe’s proposal was to adopt the following: “Opposition to Israeli, British and American nuclear weapons. For a Middle East free of nuclear weapons as a step towards world-wide nuclear disarmament”.

The AWL claims that what HOPI really means is that we support the Iranian government having nuclear weapons. How this very clear statement is transformed into its exact opposite by those writing the AWL statement is anyone’s guess and why the HOPI founding conference is being accused of adopting the opposite of what it actually did – but on the sly – is again a mystery. They attempt to play the CPGB’s game of following a statement to its logical conclusion but blow it badly. There is absolutely nothing in either of the supposed “gotcha!” statements that would lead any rational thinker to believe that HOPI was supporting the Iranian regime nor calling for Iran to have nuclear weapons.

They claim this is possible because the “Iranian people” and the Iranian regime are seen by them as one and the same. Given this belief of theirs – which is blatantly not the case, they think that when HOPI says the “Iranian people” HOPI really means the “Iranian regime”. The fact that the AWL finds it inconceivable that you could separate the Iranian people from their government beggars belief and flies in the face of historical fact and political experience.

What the AWL statement is arguing, however, is support for Israel “to ensure that an Iranian H-bomb was not used to trigger Armageddon”. This statement along with numerous comparisons to Nazi Germany is patently absurd and incredibly shallow. HOPI is very clear on its position on nuclear weapons in the middle east. It is not for the “Mullah’s Bomb” as the leaflet claims and never has been. Every statement, action, meeting and act of solidarity with those inside of Iran that we have taken has proven the opposite.

But not only this. HOPI’s straight forward rejection of both imperialism’s war drive against Iran and steadfast opposition to the oppressive regime in Iran has won the group many adherents and supporters. You would think the AWL was not involved in the Labour Representation Committee (LRC) – an organisation on whose National Committee I sit along with AWL members and John McDonnell MP – with the way it goes about condemning HOPI’s supporters and members as it does. John is an outspoken supporter of HOPI and the positions it has adopted. It will be useful for AWL members to remind themselves of this by visiting the link to John’s speech on the HOPI website and perhaps reconsider their position within the LRC if they think the MP they are supporting is a “vicarious Iranian or Islamic chauvinist” in disguise.

In addition, HOPI now has two trade union affiliations and it is hoped the LRC will soon be affiliated. The AWL ignores the broad reach of HOPI (and I am the first to admit it could be broader) and repeats the lies from the some in the SWP that HOPI is a “WWG (Weekly Worker Group) front organisation”. This is simply false.

Finally, I will now take the opportunity to bow out for good from Shiraz Socialist as a blog. I have contributed here for some time but refuse to be a part of something as vicious and vitriolic as the language that Jim has used against people I work with. I have too much respect, particularly for the Iranian comrades that we work like Torab and Yassamine, to continue to participate in a forum which supports statements that imply that these brave socialists somehow support the regime in Iran that they have spent their live exposing. Readers will remember when Jim called me and other HOPI members “scabs” for not keeping quiet about the fact that the British government was sponsoring the March 6th rallies. At that time I left the blog and came back only on his apology. I see now that this was a mistake and that the trajectory of this blog is to support lies against activists and far from being a forum for discussion has spiralled into a place where a particular person feels obliged to vent his spleen on a nightly basis with no seeming notion of what it means to have a comradely debate. As such I no longer wish to be associated with it in any way and would ask the administrator to please remove me from the blog.

78 Comments

  1. Keith said,

    Tami.
    Sober up

  2. Jim Denham said,

    I am sorry about that, Tami, and no hard feelings (from me at least): but I *do* think you’re wrong, and have held the view that HOPI has been seriously wrong ever since they equivocated over supporting Iranian trade unionists earlier this year.
    Thanks, anyway, for your contributions, which have always been been informative, even when I didn’t agree with them. I’ll buy you and Geoge a drink when we next meet.

  3. Vicky said,

    Thank you, Tami

    You are far, far too brilliant to write alongside Jim Denham’s reactionary bullshit (he had the nerve to call HOPI’s Chris Strafford pro-Nazi and is yet to issue an apology).

  4. Chris S said,

    Comrade you beat me to a response!

    HOPI is going places and it is blindingly obvious to everyone we have ever had the pleasure of discussing our politics and organisation with that HOPI is bigger than the CPGB and has alway held a solid line against Nuclear weapons. The problem for the AWL is that they find themselves with a senile CIA socialist steering their organisation out of the workers movement and firmly to the side of the imperialists and they are running around trying to deflect fire and confuse the issue.

    No one in the workers movement should work with the AWL until Matgamna and his supporters are chucked.

  5. modernityblog said,

    I am glad that HOPI are doing so well, might I suggest that they hold training sessions for their comrades ?

    a few simple ones, such as:

    1. basic nuclear weaponry for beginners

    2. how to argue a case, without appearing as if you couldn’t give a damn if Israel is nuked

    3. how to win people over to HOPI and why it is best to argue in good faith

    that will assist no end and should increase your numbers 🙂

  6. Chris S said,

    Mod, training sessions? How about?

    1. How to use nuclear proliferation as a smokescreen for imperialist intentions…

    2. How to argue a case, without appearing as if you couldn’t give a damn if Iran is nuked…

    And you you really can’t expect people to argue in good faith on this blog though i was wrong to put you in the same camp as the AWL.

    =D

  7. modernityblog said,

    Chris,

    some tips for you:

    1. try not to assume that *everyone* else is a 22/23 year old student with no knowledge of the world

    2. try to debate in good faith, until proven otherwise

    3. don’t assume, that as a member of the CPGB, that you know everything and the rest of us, don’t

    4. finally, try to read and re-read what people write 🙂

    I wish HOPI well, but I worry that their “cadre” will put people off 🙂

  8. Chris S said,

    You cannot debate in good faith when someone is calling you pro nazi and anti semitic. I dont assume i know everything, i just think on that other thread you were all very wrong. =D

    Your welcome to get involved in HOPI, from what i can remember you liked the video’s from the weekend school?

  9. Chris S said,

    *Your welcome to get involved in HOPI* – I mean you should get involved…

  10. charliethechulo said,

    People who can’t even give a straightforward statement of support to Iranian trade unionists? No thanks.

  11. Chris S said,

    Charlie, we have, but if you can prove otherwise go ahead.

    If your happy to jump on the tails of a demonstration backed by imperialists without raising a murmur of criticism then you can’t really consider that support for Iranian trade unionists can you? Considering the same imperialists are looking to blow those trade unionists up….

  12. modernityblog said,

    Chris,

    you might say “I dont assume i know everything, “

    but that’s the way it comes over, it is not all your fault, politicos so often think they’re right and nearly everyone else is wrong

    however, if you are going to represent HOPI in the wider world (as you have, by default, on the other threadt) then a bit less of a “in your face” style might win people over and not leave them with the impression that you don’t know very much, but can’t admit it

    Chris, I was very thankful for the videos, I mean it took ages and lost the momentum, but that’s much better than most of the British Left’s output, next time try to get them out within 1-2 days or people might fall into a coma waiting!

    finally, I would suggest a more persuasive attitude and less adversarial combat?

    the point scoring attitude so beloved of the British Left is handy and sometimes even fun, but it won’t win people over to your point of view, which should be your aim.

    also, if you can try a bit of humility once in a while, granted it won’t help in the CPGB, but it might assist you in the wider world when dealing the older generation 🙂

  13. charliethechulo said,

    Chris: Here we go:

    HOPI statement on the IFTU day of action in support of Iranian trade unionists:

    “Why we cannot politically support the day of action on March 6 2008

    While we encourage all Hopi members and supporters to attend local actions on that day, we cannot politically support this event. The groups centrally involved in organising this mobilisation (the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) and the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC)) are totally silent on the role of imperialism in the region, have nothing to say on the war plans of the US and – in truth – are junior partners in implementing the reactionary agendas of the US and its allies.

    We have therefore produced a leaflet that Hopi supporters will be distributing on the day. Visit our website for the full text and the leaflet version (please print it out and copy it): http://www.hopoi.org/6march.html

    I’m sure Mansoor Osanloo appreciated the “encouragement” that HOPI gave its supporters, whilst witholding “political support”. Despicable.

  14. Chris S said,

    How could you politically support an event which dodges the threat of war? Surely it is a bit worrying that the ITUC made no mention of the threat of war,….

    and the rest of what we had to say…

    “The groups centrally involved in organising this mobilisation (the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) and the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC)) are deeply compromised politically. They are more or less silent on the role of imperialism in the region and – in truth – are junior partners in implementing the reactionary agendas of the US and its allies.

    The official leaflets to mobilise for this day of action focus almost exclusively on opposition to the theocratic regime. But the Iranian working class is facing two enemies – both the Ahmadinejad regime and the biggest enemy of it and the world’s working class, imperialism.

    The negative impact that the pressure of US-led imperialism has already exerted on the Iranian working class does not merit a mention in the publicity material of the IFT and ITUC. The looming threat of war and sanctions have cost the jobs of thousands of Iranian workers – and those that protest to defend their conditions against the anti-democratic attacks of the theocratic regime are branded as “traitors” or “dupes of imperialism”. Iranian workers are struggling daily against the Islamic Republic’s attacks – privatisations, casualisations, systematic non-payment of wages and attacks on effectively organised trade unions that stand up to this vicious exploitation.

    Yet, in this, the theocracy is just enthusiastically enforcing neo-liberal economic policies dictated by the World Bank and the IMF! No wonder there is no enthusiasm amongst the working class and radical movements of Iran for regime change ‘George Bush style’. Not only do they have the grinding experience of what this already means for their daily struggle to live, they have only to glance at the nearby hell that imperialism has fashioned in Iraq to understand that the chance for genuine democracy and social change must come from their own struggles, not from reactionary self-appointed ‘saviours’. Organisations such as IFT or ITUC that are silent on imperialism – and those on the left that uncritically tail them – effectively provide a left cover for the war plans of Bush.

    Hopi has a totally different approach to solidarity. We are clear moribund capitalism – imperialism – has no answers either for the people of Iran or anywhere else on the globe. We want direct links of support between the working class in Iran and internationally that are ideologically, politically and materially totally independent of either imperialism or the theocratic regime. In today’s world, democracy and progressive social change comes from struggles only from below – whether in the Middle East, in Europe or in the United States itself.” http://www.hopoi.org/6march.html

  15. charliethechulo said,

    You failed the test of a-b-c working class solidarity, plain and simple. You don’t have an even elementary understanding of trade unionism or class politics. On the grounds you give, you’d withold support from COSATU and most other trades unions throughout the world.

  16. modernityblog said,

    Charlie writes:

    “People who can’t even give a straightforward statement of support to Iranian trade unionists?”

    Chris responds:

    “Charlie, we have, but if you can prove otherwise go ahead.”

    Charlie: “Why we cannot politically support the day of action on March 6 2008″

    Chris: “How could you politically support an event which dodges the threat of war?”

    which is, in political terms, a dodge

  17. charliethechulo said,

    No. Mod: it’s actually an admission that what I said is true. They couldn’t even give Iranian trades unionists a straightforward statement of support.

  18. Chris S said,

    No charlie, maybe in your imagination but the a-b-c’s of working class solidarity happens to include not wanting to see Iran bombed and also showing those sections of workers movement who back the imperialist war plans or go quiet on the subject to be wrong and damaging to the workers movement.

    Mod, that is not a dodge considering i posted the leaflet we gave out which deals with the accusation that we don’t give straight forward support to Iranian trade unionists, and surely straight forward support also includes supporting them not to be bombed?

  19. modernityblog said,

    Chris wrote:

    “Mod, that is not a dodge considering i posted the leaflet we gave out which deals with the accusation”

    why do you assume that we hadn’t read it and found it wanting?

    why do you assume, as a student that you know more about Trade Unions and the working class than the rest of us?

  20. charliethechulo said,

    No, Chris: the a-b-c’s of working class politics mean giving *unconditional* support to people like Mansoor Osanloo, and trades unionists like him throughout the world. Trades unions do not usually take up geo-political issues, or play a part in “balance-of-power” international calculations. And just because they don’t, that’s no excuse to “withold” support. You clearly have no idea what trade unionism is…and you’ve been guilt-tripped by the anti-working class forces of the so-called “Stop the War Coalition”: instead, you should tell the STWC to go and fuck themselves, and then study a bit and learn about working class politics.

  21. Chris S said,

    Mod, why do you assume that as a student i know less about trade unionism and the working class than you? If you found the statement wanting maybe have a look at what we passed as policy at our launch conference: http://www.hopoi.org/policies.html#workers

    “Support Iranian workers

    Conference notes that in the last few months, thousands of Iranian workers have been involved in protests, strikes and demonstrations against the neo-liberal economic policies of Iran’s Islamic Republic regime. Many workers and activists are currently in prison, others face trial and persecution.

    Conference therefore instructs the elected steering committee to do its utmost to:

    1. Expose the devastation caused by the neo liberal economic policies of the Iranian regime including privatisations, imposition of ‘blank contracts’, mass unemployment, systematic non-payment of wages etc.

    2. Build active support for the ‘model’ HOPI resolution to British trade unions, which opposes imperialist war while emphasising the need for active rank and file solidarity with Iranian workers, including their struggle for independent workers’ organisations.

    3. Support the efforts of Workers Fund Iran to provide financial support for Iranian workers.

    4. Demand the immediate and unconditional release of workers arrested for their trade union or political activities, including Mahmoud Salehi, Mansour Ossanlou, Ebrahim Madadi and Mohsen Hakimi. ”

    We give unconditional support to Osanloo and his comrades but that does not mean we unconditionally back an ITUC demonstration that conveniently forgets about the looming attack on Iran. Is that too hard for you to understand?

    I know what trade unionism is, and it is not some apolitical nightmare. Trade unions can take political positions and action; the entire history of trade unionism will prove that to you…. The PCS was won to an anti war – pro solidarity position at its conference by HOPI. If you ask me, we know more about the working class and working class politics than you if you think unions shouldn’t be supporting Stop the War and HOPI….

  22. miles davis said,

    OK…so let me get this straight: the AWL is saying that if Israel attacks Iran with nukes it will neither support or condemn the action?

    WTF? Are you really saying you wouldn’t take to the streets along with millions of other people and demonstrate, write against the attack, put out leaflets etc? You’d do what? Sit at home?

    I really think this is one of the weirdest things I’ve ever heard from a group on the left. It would be like neither supporting nor opposing the US invasion of Iraq.

    What reason coud there possibly be for any group on the left not to protest against an Israeli strike against Iran? I mean, y’know – imperialist aggression, bunker-busting nukes, massive civilian casualties, risk of regional war…aren’t these things worth protesting?

    Am I missing something here or are you lot going seriously strange?

  23. modernityblog said,

    Chris,

    many of us were arguing about unions with Gordon McLennon (you might want to look him up) when your leader, Mark Fischer, was playing with his first lego.

    and the strange thing is that Gordon, whilst he had read Marx cover to cover, knew his stuff and could argue the hind legs off of a donkey he did not have 1% of your arrogance

    I rarely agreed with Gordon, but I found him thoughtful and sympathetic

    whereas you seek to tell strangers** all about issues that you barely know about

    in the end, forgetting your politics, it just gets up people’s noses, which is not a good thing, if you are representing an organisation or trying to win people over

    ——-

    ** hasn’t it occured to you that the web is used by a LOT of old people, with decades of experience, years of trade unionism and yet you talk AT them, not with them? got the difference?

  24. charliethechulo said,

    What you’re missing, Miles, is the fact that the Jews in Israel have been threatened with annihilation by the Arab ruling classes and by Islamic fundamentalists ever since 1948, and they have a right to defend themselves against a genocidal nutter who is on record as calling for them to be wiped out. Can I make that any clearer for you, Miles? Try taking the horn out of your mouth.

  25. Chris S said,

    Mod, Mark is not our leader silly slur but nice try…..you say “whereas you seek to tell strangers all about issues that you barely know about”. What exactly would these issues be?

    Charlie, you live in a fantasy world if you think Iran can and would ever launch an attack on Israel. It is Israel not Iran who has nuclear weapons, and it is Israel not Iran which is threatening war. Got that, it is Israel not Iran which is threatening mass murder.

  26. charliethechulo said,

    Chris: unfortunately, you can’t have it both ways. And the record shows that HOPI / the CPGB did *not* give “unconditional support” to Osanloo, as the shameful HOPI quote I gave you (see#13, above) makes unmistakeably clear. Chris: seriously, you need to make your mind up (before I catch you out on any more proveable elementary mistakes), whether class politics or geo-political manoeuvring and “balance of power” stuff takes precedence (a la Michael Pablo) HOPI and the CPGB can’t make up their minds.

  27. Chris S said,

    Charlie, we do give unconditional support to Osanloo where have we ever wrote otherwise. Go and prove it. Now lets go through this real slow in hope it sinks in… HOPI did not give the ITUC demonstration unconditional support because it lacked even the mildest statement against an attack on Iran, got that? The ITUC and Osanloo are two seperate entities. Ok? Osanloo get unconditional support. The ITUC does not. Simple.

    Also Charlie you didn’t respond on the trade union stuff? Why is that? Is that because unions contrary to what you are trying to portray can take political positions, and what is more they should be taking political positions and it is the duty of all communists, socialists etc to raise anti war motions within their unions…

  28. charliethechulo said,

    Chris: so you don’t take Ahmadinejad seriously when he talks about wiping Israel of the map? And you think Iran’s nuclear programme is entirely peaceful?
    It’s just possible that you’re right on both counts. But, after the history of theTwentieth Century, are you willing to bet the Jews on *both* propositions?

  29. miles davis said,

    Charlie, you could certainly try and make it clearer. Not even the US thinks Iran is anywhere near having nukes. How can you justify a country with hundreds of nukes using nukes on a country that doesn’t have nukes in the name of stopping the use of nukes? It’s Dr Strangelove logic, innit?

    I realise there are different viewpoints on this board between different factions – Modernity vs John G or Chris whatissname and so on – but I would actually like to draw a line in the sand on this question:

    Should we protest against an Israeli nuke strike on Iran?

    Here’s my angle: I’m sitting at home watching the telly and news comes through that Israel is dropping bunker-busting nukes on Iranian nuke faclities, some of which are located inside major population centres. Radiation is falling on Iran, and probably neighbouring countries (maybe even Israel), cities are burning, thousands are dying, and the whole region will be in chaos.

    What am I going to do? I’m going to hit the streets along with, I’m sure, millions of other people – even more than hit the streets to protest the Iraq war. I’m not going to be chanting ‘Praise be to Allah’ or ‘Long like the mullahs’, but I sure as hell am going to be opposing what will probably be the gravest threat to the future of the planet since the Cuban Missile Crisis. It’s got nothing to do with being an objective fascist or anything – it’s the automatic response that anyone on the left, and a lot of decent people on the right as well, will have to the use of nukes.

    And you are really going to sit at home on your arse and take no position on this? I would bet that every other socialist group in the Uk will be trying to get a general strike going against the war, especially is the UK is in some way involved. And I think that, with 90% of the population appalled by the use of nukes, socialists would have a very good chance of success. Will you be opposing strike action against the war? I just think your position is amazing. I’m glad noone outside the AWL sees to share it.

  30. charliethechulo said,

    Chris: HOPI didn’t give support the IFTU’s day of action in support of Osanloo: therefore they didn’t support a piece of elementary solidarity action by an international trade union. Got it? And understand why I say that’s shameful?

  31. Chris S said,

    It is not about betting the Jews on either account. It is about reality and the reality is, Iran has not got nukes, Israel has. Iran is nowhere near getting nukes, Israel has. Iran has not threatened war, Israel has. Do you see a pattern here? What is more, i doubt it is in the class interests of the Mullahs to go down in flames after trying to hit Iran is it? And what i find very telling about all of this, if Iran wanted to kill all the Jews, surely it has forgotten the thousands within it’s own borders….bit of an oversight for a regime committed to the destruction of Israel and the Jews dont you think?

  32. charliethechulo said,

    OK, Chris: bet the Jews, You’re very confident about how benign the mullahs are. I just hope you’re right and that you have some inside knowledge denied to us mere observers. So, yes: bet the Jews; you’re obviously happy to, and confident in, doing so. I just wish I could say the same.
    P,S: Iran may not have threatened nuclear war: Ahmadinejad most certainly *has* threatened Israel with being “wiped off the map”: or do you deny that as wll?

  33. modernityblog said,

    Chris S wrote:

    “Mod, Mark is not our leader silly slur but nice try…..”

    what is it with you? are you pissed or just plain stupid?

    it wasn’t a “slur”, as I understand it Fischer is the National Organiser of the CPGB, thus he’s your political boss **

    your attitude is part of the reason why the British Left is so small, nowadays its full of condescending middle class students like you, know all’s who basically know fuck all, and too immature to admit it

    still when you’re in a nice comfy City job, sucking up to the bosses, this dialogue with be a reminder to all about you

    ** I confess that I don’t follow the goings on of Tankies nowadays, so I welcome being corrected, maybe Fischer was playing with Stalin dolls at the age of 5? lego being a bit too bourgeois?

    in fairness to Fischer he does not come over as being half as thick as his acolytes Chris S.

  34. miles davis said,

    Charlie, an Iranian nuke strike on Israel would be terrible. I am pleased the regime there is very far from having a bomb and according last year’s US govt report have stopped trying.

    Of course you and I would be on the streets together opposing an Iranian strike on Israel.
    Why not the same position then on an Israeli nuke strike on Iran? Would that not be as bad? Would you really sit at home and refuse to oppose a nuke strike just cos it tagreted Persians rather than Israelis?

    I just can’t see the logic, or the humanity, in your position.

  35. charliethechulo said,

    Miles: there are many things happening in this world that I don’t agree with. Some of them I protest about. The Jewish nation taking pre-emptive action to defend itself against an anti-semitic, genocidal maniac (on record as calling for Israel’s destruction) is *not* something I’d want to take to the streets to protest about. If only because I can (from experience) predict the unsavoury company I’d inevitably find myself in, where I to do so. I’ve had enough of marching in SWP/Repect/MAB-sponsored race-hate marches against Israel.

  36. modernityblog said,

    miles davis,

    listen up, I am not in, close by or chummy with the AWL.

    However, I do like Shiraz Socialist as they have a very friendly moderation policy and they don’t attack Jews (or “Zionists” in the contemporary lingo), which is rather novel nowadays

    JohnG is not AWL either, he’s a lick spittle of the SWP, a modern day Palme Dutt (look him up). He’s a big fan of Nasrallah.

    If the SWP honcho John Rees said the ‘Royals’ were really, really part of the new Vanguard, then I have no doubt, JohnG would spend days parroting that line and explain dialectically why that is so.

    as for my views, read the thread properly I made it clear enough 🙂

  37. miles davis said,

    Mod: I know. I am just suggesting that it’d be good to step back momentarily from the more intricate disputes and get a handle on this very basic point: would a nuke strike on Iran be worth protesting about? And I wouldn’t want the AWL to think that, just because there are those of us who share some of the AWL’s criticisms of say, George Galloway’s views on Iran, that they in any way have any sympathy for this bizarre view that a nuke strike on Israel would not be worth protesting about. They are, I confidently believe, utterly alone on this question. And I would like Charlie and co to just think through the consequences of their position. Iran is burning, thousands of civilians are dying, radiation is falling on Iraq, Jordan and probably Israel, the whole region is in turmoil, a wider nuke war is in the offing –

    and Charlie sits at home, saying this ‘is *not* something I’d want to take to the streets to protest about’. And what is his reason? Well here it is folks:

    ‘If only because I can (from experience) predict the unsavoury company I’d inevitably find myself in, where I to do so.’

    That’s right – it’s not about the bodies piling up, the radiation falling on Amman and Haifa, the setting back of peace for a generation or two – it’s about Charlie not wanting to rub shoulders with the SWP!

    Has anyone ever read anything so pathetic in the internet?

    For Chrissakes, Charlie, organise a separate demo if you want! You’d have millions of people wanting to march.

    I don’t know if there’s much else I can say to these blighters. If you can’t get someone to protest against a nuke war then I don’t what they think is worth protesting against.

  38. charliethechulo said,

    You misunderstand me, Miles: my reluctance to march has little to do with the SWP: it’s because I’d find myself alongside pro-Hizbullah and Hamas supporters, who *really* do want to see Israel wiped off the face of the map, or the earth, or history, or whatever. I don’t want to associate myself with supporters of clerical fascism, and however much I might oppose many things Israel does (eg the post 1967 occupations), I don’t deny her right to defend herself against a nuclear threat from the clerical fascists who run Iran.

  39. miles davis said,

    It’s just as pathetic to refuse to protest against a nuclear war because you might rub shoulders with Hamas and Hizbullah supporters, Charles. Why not raise your own slogans, hand out your own leaflets, even organise your own demos if you have to?
    For chrissakes, 99% of the people on the streets would feel the same way about Hamas as you, if they even thought of Hamas at all.

    Can’t you see you have zero credibility when you’d protest against a nuke strike on Israel but not on Iran? What happened to internationalism and class politics? Wouldn’t a nuke strike on one country be just as awful as a nuke strike on another? If I said I’d protest a nuke strike on Iran but not a strike on Israel would you think that reasonable?

    This is defnitely the most surreal position I have ever come across from a socialist group. I always thought nuke war was up there on the list of things any sane human, let alone any socialist, would want to protest about?

  40. modernityblog said,

    Miles,

    I prefer, for the sake of sanity, not to dwell too much on Armageddon in the middle east

    as for demos, I am sure that half the placard designs are on the drawing board, and would probably take a few tips from that racist cartoon show held in Tehran, http://irancartoon.com/120/holocaust/index.htm

    and to be honest I get the impression that if ANY anti-Israel demo was called, whatever the theme (Israeli PM farts, green house gases go up,etc) there would be some people willing to go on it

    but charlie makes a fair point, whatever happens a lot of people felt burnt by the StwC and won’t go near them again.

    as for a General Strike, unlikely

  41. modernityblog said,

    let’s remind ourselves of the anti-Jewish racism on previous ‘anti-war’ demos:

    (”Khaiber, Khaiber, Ya Yahud, Jaish Muhammad Safayahood”, which translates into, “Khaibar, Khaibar, O Jews, the army of Mohammed is coming for you”).

  42. charliethechulo said,

    Miles: I (like Sean Matgamna) am against nuclear weapons *in principle*; I’m against *any* use of nuclear weapons, under *any* circumstances, by *anyone*. So, yes: re-reading your previous posts, which I see make it clear that you’re talking about a *nuclear* attack, I would protest and would expect the AWL as a whole to do so. But that still doesn’t:
    a/ deny *in principle* Israel’s right to defend herself (short of the use of nuclear weapons);
    b/ mean that I’d be unconcerned about the presence on any such demos, of the usual anti-semites and their apologists.

  43. johng said,

    But would Jim’s definition of what constitutes a ‘nuclear weapon’ vary rather like his friends, those defenders of Iraqi and Iranian working class freedom in the White House, when they discuss the definition of torture?

    (this just gets better and better)

    Its especially wierd that mod, someone completely obsessed with proving that any criticism of Israel is anti-semitic, has become a kind of fellow traveller of this site. He seems to have adopted pretend socialist rhetoric occassionally since the Respect split. Mod mate, your on a sinking ship.

  44. Andrew Coates said,

    I am a supporter of HOPI and was at the founding conference. My Branch of the T & G/Unite is an affiliate. I consdier HOPI an excellent initiative. As such I agreed with the general thrust of TWP’s post. However, as a veteran of the UK Left List (UKLN) I can say that Jim Denham’s comments are fairly mild: there’s a lot worse around. I always thought that how to be thick-skined was one of the first lessons you learnt on the Web.

    Personally I am closer politically to the CPGB’s version of Marxism than the AWL’s: I cannot underline too much how far their roots in a variety of American Trotskyism – Schachtman’s – is distant from the kind of European left I come from. However I note that both the AWL and the CPGB offer varieties of ‘Thrid Camp’ politics: neither (for exampel) US-led imperialism nor Islamist ‘anti-imperialism’. Point of agreement?

    If I consider the AWL tends to pass over too lightly the extremely reactionary side of Israel state politics (and notably parties) I would not write them off as ‘Zionist’ since they have a point about the Two States strategy and often make pertinent criticisms of the toelrance of hysterical anti-Jewish stands of Islamists by some of the British left. That does not mean that the CPGB, and the much much wider HOPI (as many have emphasised it is not just the CPGB and I cannot imagine the Iranian comrades even being thought of in this way) are wrong to develop a (in my view) a more adequate class based position on the Iranian regime and how to back its opponents so that they (may) eventually overthrow the Theocracy. Into these divisions the whole rumpus about a Nuclear attack appears more of a political device on both sdies to enforce poltiical ‘clarity’ (that is, draw up political battle lines) than to help the working class and the oppressed in t the region.

    I seem to remember that the CPGB and the AWL were close enough not so long ago to co-operate directly. What ahs changed so radically that each has so much venom for the other? Oh, do tell me: I’ve seen this senario on the left many many times before.

    Chagrin d’amour…

  45. johng said,

    “what has changed”

    advocating a nuclear strike on Iran would do it I guess. I mean especially if you happen to be Iranian. heroic internationalism of that sort is suitably rigerous in that its not likely to win you much support.

  46. miles davis said,

    Charlie, I’m pleased to hear you’d protest a nuclear strike on Iran, but still depressed that you’d give your support to an attack by Israel using conventional weapons. After all, such an attack would surely still cause large numbers of casualities, because a number of key Iranian facilities are located in heavily populated areas. I think some are actually in the heart of cities. You complained about a alack of solidarity with Iranian trade unionists, but I don’t think killing trade unionists and Iranians in general counts as solidarity either.

    And all the deaths caused by a conventional air campaign would be for what, given that even last year’s official US report said that Iran is not currently pursuing a bomb, and nobody except the war hawks claims Iran is any more than decades away from having one?

    The real reason for an Israel strike on Iran would not be the threat of a nuclear holocaust, anymore than the real reason for the US invasion of Iraq was the threat posed by WMDs.

  47. johng said,

    But hey Miles its much worse then that. As TWP points out. There are widespread fears of an Israeli strike on Iranian nuclear facilities. Its these fears that bomber sean was addressing. Everyone knows that technically, the only way to destroy these from the air is the use of nuclear tipped bunker busters. Everyone also knows that such a strike would have catastrophic consequences, partly for the reasons you point out (one imagines the justifications even now: its not our fault: they built their nuclear plants in population centres..cowardly islamofascists). But also because of the nature of the targets. The fact that right wing idiots like Sean and Jim do not operate in the real world, but instead are obsessed with their own imaginary posturing does not mean that they have not advocated a nuclear attack on Iran. In the real world thats what that article meant. Someone suggested on another thread that I was wrong to suggest that the AWL was no longer part of the Labour movement, referencing the reality of a Labour Party which supports imperialism. This is mistaken. The AWL have transformed themselves into a pro-imperialist lobby group. In my view they are well on the way to becoming an RCP-Spiked type formation (just with different obsessions). The fact that they still have some trade union members etc notwithstanding (so did the RCP, and some of them woke up one fine morning to discover that their organisation was not what it said on the tin). The signs are unmistakable. The AWL as an organisation is on a path which will lead it not only out of the left but out of the labour movement. The RCP is really the best analogy.

    The interesting question is whether Sean’s article was specifically designed to break the organisation apart. A new anti-reality principle for the true acolytes.

  48. johng said,

    The latest attack on HOPI is also extraordinary and backs up my point. After all, here is an organisation which positions itself to the left of STW on the basis of the preported lack of criticism of the Iranian regime. For all sorts of reasons I disagree with their position, but one can see where this comes from. For the AWL which preports to be a third campist organisation, one would have thought that such an organisation, whatever technical disagreements there might be, would be one to be supported. But no. This absurd attack on them is simply an attack on anyone who opposes an attack on Iran. But more importantly it seems mainly aimed at AWL members (its fairly clear from TWP’s response the impact that it would have on HOPI members: a kind of dawning realisation that you’d been hanging out with the enemy after all, understandably an unpleasent creepy feeling). Its aimed at AWL members as a kind of a test. Anyone who gives out a leaflet like that is a true acolyte. The fact that anyone who gives out a leaflet like this, the week after a leading member of the AWL advocated a nuclear strike on Iran, will ensure that no one in the anti-war movement, and certainly no Iranian, whatever their nuanced position, will ever speak to you again, is something the hard non-kitsh left presumably regard as yet more collateral damage. By the end of next year the AWL will just be a row of Alan Johnson’s.

  49. modernity said,

    a few contradictions here

    some people are absolutely certain that Israel will launch a nuclear attack on Iran, they can even tell you about the placement and nature of the Iranian leadership’s nuclear facilities?

    a lot of certainty and knowledge there

    yet when you ask rather elementary questions about uranium enrichment, these selfsame people fall quiet?

    why is that?

    why are some people so sure of the Israeli’s mendacious ways but equally clear of the innocence of Ahmadinejad? and of his (along with his political bosses’) rationality?

    again, a plethora of supposed reasons are pulled out to excuse away the Iranian theocracy’s conduct and never does the question, what is the purpose of the sophisticated uranium enrichment get answered, yet the worst is always thought of the Israelis?

    why is that ?

  50. johng said,

    I have nowhere claimed that I am certain that Israel will launch an attack. I have stated that many fear they will and this was the discussion which a leading figure in the AWL was addressing. And everyone knows that such an attack could not possibly be successful without the use of uranium tipped bunker buster bombs. His position is that such an attack would be entirely reasonable, that we would be in no position to condemn it etc. Where is the ‘contradiction’? The contradiction seems to be more in you quite correctly suggesting that you would utterly oppose such an action and would indeed condemn it, whilst at the same time defending the authors of a piece who take the opposite point of view. Why?

  51. Jim Denham said,

    Miles: try taking the horn outta your mouth and *listen* to (or, rather *read*) what’s being said. Neither Sean M nor myself have said we’d *support* any sort of attack (never mind nuclear) on Iran; we’ve said it would be “understandable”. Just like, say, the parent of a child who’s been sexually molested taking the law into his/her own hands would be “understandable”…but it doesn’t mean that your’d actually support it, let alone *advocate* such action. Geddit?

    If not (re-?) read Sean’s original article (the one which sparked this row), here:

    http://www.workersliberty.org/story/2008/07/28/discussion-article-what-if-israel-bombs-iran

  52. Tina said,

    Actually the article says that Israel has “good reason” to attack Iran, and that such an attack couldn’t be condemned on any reasonable basis. As close to supporting an attack as you can get.

    I might understand why a parent say violently attacked or even killed someone who had abused their child, but I wouldn’t necessarily say that they had “good reason” to. In any case this is all semantics when its obvious to any honest and right-minded person what the article was arguing.

  53. modernity said,

    Sean made a mistake, not assuming that his words would be stripped of context, yanked out of the wider sense and prayed upon by sectarians

    these petty sectarians always assume the very worse of their opponents and ascribe the most charitable interpretation to their own.

    so next time, Sean and co, should spell it out, time after time

    reiterate each point several times over and then have a summary which helps those lacking in basic reading skills, comprehension and political nouse to understand the overall thrust of the arguments.

    again, only those slow witted or assuming the very worse would read the article and suspect that Sean was advocating nuking Iran, he was NOT.

    for the record, I am not in any way connected to the AWL, and I think that the article was poorly worded and made too many assumptions, but it does not suggest that Iran should nuke Iran, it does NOT propose that.

    The article was hanging around the Engage site for ages, before spotted by the AWL’s enemies.

    http://www.engageonline.org.uk/blog/article.php?id=2035

    Janine at Stroppy explains it better:

    http://stroppyblog.blogspot.com/2008/08/workers-liberty-vs-weekly-worker-debate.html

  54. Alan Laurence said,

    Tina,

    The offending article was quite clear in its opposition to an Israeli strike on Iran. The first para explained why. The article then dimissed ten other reasons for oppostion.

    This is the first para…by what reading does this imply support for a bombing?

    ‘An attack on Iran will most likely lead to great carnage in the Middle East, and beyond, as supporters of Iran resort to suicide-bombings in retaliation. There might well be large scale Iranian civilian “collateral” casualties. An attack would strengthen the Iranian regime and license a smash down on its critics, including working class critics, inside Iran. It would throw Iraq back into the worst chaos. ‘

    Ive noticed the awl use the term ‘good reason’ quite a lot. It seems to mean ‘not a fantasy’. And that reading makes sense in this context because caution prescribes accepting that the Iranian regime to have murderous intent. That’s a ‘good reason’ for the Israeli Gvt to act. Understanding the predicament of, the reasoning of the Israeli Gvt does not imply support for the line of action it takes.
    It doesnt seem to me at all obvious that the article called for a first stike. Declaring it ‘obvious’ doesnt make it so.

  55. johng said,

    What a wierd reading. The article says we should not condemn a strike as we could not provide any alternative. It is absolutely clear. As is Jim Denham finding a nuclear attack on Iran ‘understandable’ (presumably he see’s Iranians as child molesters).

  56. Jim Denham said,

    Father “G***Boy” Coughlin: learn to read. Then learn to think.

  57. miles davis said,

    Jim, I never said Sean’s article supported an attack on Iran. The meaning I took from it was that the AWL would not actively protest if Israel attacked Iran, because an attack would be kinda understandable even if not supportable. Really it’s about cutting to the chase and seeing what the theory means in practice. That’s why I was asking Charlie and why I ask others in the AWL whether they would sit on the sidelines when they saw nukes falling on Iran (or conventional warheads, which would be bad enough). What about you? Would you protest against an Israeli strike?

    A second question I was bringing up with Charlie was why anyone in the AWL thinks that Iran is close to getting bomb, given that even an official US report said that as of last year Iran had suspended its nukes programme. I never got an answer on that one.

  58. modernity said,

    Miles wrote:

    “Charlie was why anyone in the AWL thinks that Iran is close to getting bomb, given that even an official US report said that as of last year Iran had suspended its nukes programme. I never got an answer on that one.”

    not exactly infallible are they?

    Miles, please tell us the purpose of centrifuges in the process of sophisticated uranium enrichment?

    what is their purpose? and why are they key to the issue?

    I never got an answer on that one.

  59. Jim Denham said,

    I don’t know whether Iran is “getting near” to having a nuclear bomb. You, Miles, and many others on the left, seem to have inside knowledge on this denied to the rest of us. Just like so many (not necessarily you, Miles) were so sure that Ahmadinejad had been misquoted / mistranslated about wiping Israel off the “face of the map” or “from history”, or whatever. The point is: what makes you so sure? And if you were an Israeli Jew would you be so relaxed about it? What Sean and I are arguing for is most definitely *not* an Israeli attack (as I keep telling people, read his article for chissakes! http://www.workersliberty.org/story/2008/07/28/discussion-article-what-if-israel-bombs-iran), but some basic, decent, human understanding of why Israeli Jews might feel the way they do about the Iranian leadership…and want to do something about it. OK? Clear now?

  60. miles davis said,

    You didn’t answer the first question Jim. Would you actually protest against an Israeli strike on Iran on the streets, or refrain from doing on so, on the grounds that it was kinda understandable? To me this question cuts to the chase. Theory is only as good as practice.

    I do understood why many Israelis would fear an Iranian bomb, even if such a bomb is not close or even getting closer, according to the US’s report. The fears of ordinary Israelis do have roots in real history and in the rheoric of the Iranian leadership. In the same way, there must be many Iranians who fear an Israeli nuclear strike against their country, and they also have a basis for being afraid. Then there are the Lebanese who must fear a repeat of the nightmare of a couple of years ago, when Israeli bombs hit their cities. And of course the Palestinians have real reasons based in historical event and in the present to fear Israeli bombs.

    But all of these fears cannot be used as reasons to excuse the starting of new wars. It every country whose population feared attack launched pre-emptive war then the world would be in flames. Both the Israeli and Iranian ruling classes use the pain that their peoples have suffered through history and the fears of their populations to justify policies that represent the interests of the ruling class. We have seen this throughout the history of capitalism. We saw Bush use the suffering inflicted on 9/11 to justify imperialist wars in the Middle East.

    Surely the Third Camp position, as put forward by HOPI and many AWL members opposed to Sean’s article (David Broder for instance), is not to take sides in the clashes between rival capitalist classes but make an internationalist movement against war? I am sure that an Israeli strike on Iran would create a mass movement on the streets (and possibly in the workplaces) around the world. Would you be on the streets with us, Jim?

  61. Jim Denham said,

    Now we’re getting somewhere, Miles: yes, what we’re talking about is basically having some *understanding* of how ordinary people (Iranians as well as Israelis) *feel* about things. That, as I read it, is all Sean has been arguing. The fact that his plea for some understanding of how Israeli Jews feel about an Iranian bomb, has caused such outrage, is the really telling point. As I’ve already said, I *might* join a protest against an Israeli attack, but I’d make bloody sure that one way or the other, my participation could not be construed as any sort of “solidarity” with the anti-semites of Hizb, Hamas, MAB, and those on the UK “left” who think clerical fascism’s OK (Father John G. Coughlin: this means YOU).

  62. modernity said,

    Miles,

    did you miss the question?

    Miles, please tell us the purpose of centrifuges in the process of sophisticated uranium enrichment?

    what is their purpose? and why are they key to the issue?

    Hint: Marxists should be able to answer that question 🙂

  63. miles davis said,

    I’m bowing out here as I think I’ve made my point (probably too laboriously already).

    I’m pleased to think we might have some common ground, Jim. And I would strongly suggest that some of the people you have been chewing up from HOPI and the CPGB and even – shock, horror! – the SWP also have hearts and have a good understanding of what drives ordinary people to support their ruling classes in wars. I hope that you find a more constructive way to engage with other active socialists and don’t end up feeling closer to the likes of Will and Harrys Place.

    Mod, you got me, you clever devil. It was the bold text question that finally did it. I’m ashamed of my ignorance of centrithingamejiggies. I’m going to go home and throw out all those books of political economy and start studying so that I can build my own nuke reactor. Give yourself a pat on the back and a cookie, m’lad.

  64. modernityblog said,

    Miles,

    let me explain,

    building nuclear weaponry is not like putting together shelves.

    You don’t just pop down to the local DIY shop and get all of the equipment needed.

    Building nuclear weaponry is a process, something I think Marxists should appreciate.

    One particular function feeds into another which in turn feeds into another, and so on and then ultimately as a product of that labour you have materials which can be used for nuclear weaponry.

    Still following me?

    For example, if you were going to build tanks you would first of all probably build a tank factory? Or if you were going to manufacture cars you might build (or utilise) a factory, within which you’d construct the cars

    So by the first actions you can follow where the process is going

    OK still?

    Nuclear weaponry which is based on uranium, requires a very sophisticated process of enrichment to produce weapons grade uranium, typically of a purity greater than 90%.

    And this is a point to bear in mind, unlike other processes highly enriched uranium doesn’t have many other uses except in nuclear weaponry.

    Got that? limited uses.

    It’s not like a car factory which you could change to produce something else.

    Sophisticated uranium enrichment is indicative (mark the word, indicative) of the process of producing weapons grade uranium.

    It is not complete evidence, but unlike other processes sophisticated enrichment of uranium only has one outcome: weapons grade uranium.

    So once you’ve gone to the trouble, and making it is very problematic, requiring a complex centrifuge design, you’ve probably done it for a specific purpose.

    That’s why enrichment is key because the process indicates the probable purpose.

    Again, the purpose of sophisticated uranium enrichment is to produce weapons grade uranium, nothing else.

    Are you still following?

    so starting a process can indicate where it will end, and you don’t need to be a genius to know once someone starts building a tank factory that they will eventually start producing tanks, even if they haven’t produced any tanks YET

    so I hope you’ve follow the analogy

    that’s why enrichment is the elephant in the room and why it is so worrying.

    personally, I hope that they are NOT going for a bomb, that’s what I’d like, for it all to have been a bluff, but I wouldn’t want to stake my life or that of millions of people on it.

  65. johng said,

    Jim *might* join a protest about a nuclear strike on Iran.

    The Iranian people are almost beside themselves with joy at such courageous solidarity.

  66. Lobby Ludd said,

    Jim D said:

    “Miles: try taking the horn outta your mouth and *listen* to (or, rather *read*) what’s being said. Neither Sean M nor myself have said we’d *support* any sort of attack (never mind nuclear) on Iran; we’ve said it would be “understandable”. Just like, say, the parent of a child who’s been sexually molested taking the law into his/her own hands would be “understandable”…but it doesn’t mean that your’d actually support it, let alone *advocate* such action. Geddit?”

    Makes it sound a bit like pub chatter – nothing to worry about, just move on.

    Unfortunately, the original article talked about ‘good reason’ for an attack. Forgetting working class politics for a moment, what possible ‘good reason’ is there for the Israeli ruling class to attack Iran? That they are under threat from Iran? (You could also transpose the words ‘Israel’ and ‘Iran’.)

    That ‘leading members’ of the AWL can’t (or won’t) tell the difference between ‘pub chatter’ and politics which matter is something we can all have pet theories about.

    The original article was very poor, David Broder’s reply was good. Subsequent defence of the original article looks like admiring the Emperor’s new clothes.

  67. Jim Denham said,

    No, Lobby: my understanding of Sean’s point is precisely what he spells out in the article, ie, that Israeli Jews’ fear of a vocal, on-the-record anti-semite obtaining a nuvclear bomb, is understandable, reasonable and rational. That doesn’t mean we’d *support* an attack (as Sean spells out very clearly in the opening paragraph of the article)…but we need to at least *understand* how Israeli Jews feel on this subject. The outrage that this suggestion has provoked from the anti-Isael fanatics and hysterics of the CPGB and others on the kisch-left has been most revealing. I’d agree with Mod, however, that Sean probably makes the mistake of crediting his readers with a degree of intelligence and literacy that they plainly don’t possess.

  68. Lobby Ludd said,

    Jim D said:

    “No, Lobby: my understanding of Sean’s point is precisely what he spells out in the article, ie, that Israeli Jews’ fear of a vocal, on-the-record anti-semite obtaining a nuvclear bomb, is understandable, reasonable and rational.”

    Yeah, I spotted SM’s rationalisations. They’re bollocks, though. They are not ‘understandable, reasonable and rational.’.

    Your comrade David Broder can explain.

  69. modernityblog said,

    I think Sean assumed too much about the reading and comprehension skills of his political opponents.

  70. Lobby Ludd said,

    Moralityblog said:

    “I think Sean assumed too much about the reading and comprehension skills of his political opponents.”

    Thank you very much, Morality. Your contribution, once again insults readers of this blog and says nothing.

  71. charliethechulo said,

    “Moralityblog”, indeed, Lobby? So you follow the lead of Will Rubbish (who first coined that term)? You should, at least, acknowledge the origin of the joke.

  72. voltairespriest said,

    Notwithstanding that one wouldn’t particularly want to follow Will’s lead,eh?

  73. modernityblog said,

    Lobby Ludd, if I wanted to insult you, I probably say “I think you’re as thick as shite and have problems understanding basic logic” but I didn’t cos I couldn’t be troubled to.

    I have already stated in a few places (not that you will have read them) that I disagree with his article and it could have been worded better

    but let’s be honest, if Sean M farted some crank, that hates the AWL, would accuse him of making climate change worse.

    I think people have knives out for the AWL, WHATEVER they say

    so you might take the trouble to read Janine’s article on Stroppyblog, it explains things rather well.

    [and before you ask, I don’t know Sean, the AWL or anything close but I do try to read things carefully, even if they are badly worded]

    did you get all of that? or shall I do a simplified summary for you?

  74. Lobby Ludd said,

    Charliethechulo said:

    ““Moralityblog”, indeed, Lobby? So you follow the lead of Will Rubbish (who first coined that term)? You should, at least, acknowledge the origin of the joke.”

    I was not aware that WR used the term first, I managed to come up with it all by myself. As to acknowledging its origin – who gives a toss.

    Moralityblog – I do not need a reading list from you, do try to adopt a less patronising tone.

  75. tcd said,

    lol, AWL SCUM at it again, what a pathetic and isolated little sect on the left with positions shared by no-one on the entire international revolutionary left, especially not in Iran or the Middle East or Central Asia or any of the countries they hollwoly claim to wnt to help from bove with their enlightened policies which the dumb brown savages are too stupid and irrational to implement on our own.

    I hope those arseholes get liquidated by the armed international proletariate, come back to me when you´ve ever talked to anyone outside of Britain and Israel you racist british and Israeli nationalist SCUM. I´ll make sure as many possible fnd out about this anti-Iranian propaganda you spread, wankers, and make sure it´s never forgotten, don´t ever try to work with any groups in the third world because now it´s more clear than ever and they´ll find out the contempt you hold, and spit in your face, like you deserve, SCUM.

  76. tcd said,

    also, I really wouldn´t care if the AWL liquidated into Labour and became open right-wing natioanlists, it´s not like I go onto every right-wing site to argue with them. the right will exist, nationalism will exist, much of the population in Britian willw ant to bomb Iran, who cares? I can live with that. but the disgrace is that these are intellectuals and that they call themselves communists and try to pretend to frame this reactionary politics inside the far left! it makes no sense, nobody on the left wants youy AWL, liquidate yourself into Labour and the British state or something, be as nationalist as you want, and then most of the critics you get would just say, fair enough, the right is the right, and ignore you. you don´t see me commenting on the Labour website do you? But why keep claiming to be socialist? :s

  77. Modernity Watch said,

    I know Modernity is the most loyal customer of these ere parts – but aren’t the blog owners getting slightly embarrised by this gentleman who appears to be destroying every single attempt at a civilised debate?

    Mods recent Alan Partridge style breakdown has been a turn for a worse. It seems that blog commenting is having an adverse effect on his mental wellbeing. Rather than fueling his unhealthy addiction would it not be wish to give him some friendly advice – a little break perhaps for his own good, aswell as everyone elses? Either that or just go back to Harry’s Place. In that context, at least he comes across as reasonably well adjusted.

  78. Recent Links Tagged With "awl" - JabberTags said,

    […] on Sat 13-12-2008 Etwas zu spät, aber: Alles Gute zum 25. Saved by bruno1378 on Sat 13-12-2008 Lies, Obfuscation and Utter Nonsense Saved by ThisTimeNextSummer on Thu 11-12-2008 China Travel – Site of Yangshao Village Saved by […]

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