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For The Record  

FTR #613 The Socialism of Fools, Part 2: American Dreyfus

Recorded October 7, 2007
MP3: Side 1 | Side 2
REALAUDIO

Introduction: Supplementing FTR#567, this program highlights the resurgence of anti-Semitism in the United States and elsewhere. [The title of the program refers to a characterization of anti-Semitism by a 20th century social critic as “the socialism of fools.”] Of particular significance in the program is the scapegoating of “Jews” or “the Israel lobby” for the sins of others, the petroleum industry and its related constituencies in particular.

Beginning with discussion of the economic utility of genocide, the program notes that such slaughter is usually covered-up when the bloodletting serves the interests of powerful economic forces. After setting forth a number of stridently anti-Semitic statements by prominent personages around the world, the broadcast tackles two significant features of the re-emergence of “the socialism of fools.”

The first is the use of the term “neo-conservatives” to mean “Jews”—the supposed architects of the Iraqi invasion. Another key point concerns the circumstances surrounding Harvard University’s presentation of a paper blaming the Iraq war and other events on the “Israel Lobby.” The broadcast underscores that Harvard’s presentation of the paper followed the appointment of a Muslim to head Harvard’s endowment fund and Saudi Prince Alwaleed’s donation of $20 million to the University to fund Middle Eastern studies.

Mohamed El-Erian, the head of Harvard’s endowment fund, had previously worked for German financial firm Allianz and recently returned to work for that company after leaving Harvard. In addition to a steady infusion of funds from Saudi Arabia into American media and academic institutions, the growth in anti-Semitism is being fuelled by slanted journalistic coverage of the Middle East.

Of particular significance in this regard is the faking or exaggeration of supposed Israeli atrocities. (For more about this, see—among other programs—FTR#564.) Perhaps the most significant of these is the death of Mohammed al-Dura, a boy supposedly killed by Israeli troops in the early days of the Second Intifada. Recent litigation in France spotlights the serious discrepancies in the official version of the case—discrepancies that suggest that the incident may have been misrepresented or even faked altogether. Concluding with more discussion of the anti-Semitic bent taking hold on American campuses, the program highlights the University of California’s deliberate exclusion of Israelis from a program that trains residents of Middle Eastern countries for careers in business.

Program Highlights Include: Harvard endowment fund head Mohamed El-Erian’s employment with Pimco, a subsidiary of German insurance giant Allianz both before and after his employment with Harvard; Pimco’s move to take advantage of the subprime mortgage crisis; review of the control of major German corporations by the Bormann capital network and the Underground Reich; review of James Baker’s Rice University think tank in generating the impetus to invade Iraq.

1. The program begins with author Christopher Simpson’s ruminations on the social significance of genocide and the denial of it by the power elites who perpetrate it. This is, of course, to be seen in the context of the exoneration of the perpetrators of the Nazi genocide against the Jews and the re-emergence of virulent anti-Semitism in the West. (FTR#614 discusses the exoneration of the Nazi killers in the context of the return to power of the business elite who aided in, and profited from, the genocide against the Jews.) “Who then, or what, is the splendid blond beast? It is the destruction inherent in any system or order, the institutionalized brutality whose existence is denied by cheerleaders of the status quo at the very moment they feed its appetite for blood. The present world order supplies stability and rationality of a sort for human society while its day-to-day operations chew up the weak, the scapegoats, and almost anyone else in its way. This is not necessarily an evil conspiracy of insiders; it is a structural dilemma that generates itself more or less consistently from place to place and from generation to generation. Much of modern society has been built upon genocide. This crime was integral to the emergence of the United States, of czarist Russia and later the USSR, of European empires, and of many other states. Today, modern governments continue extermination of indigenous peoples throughout Asia Africa, and Latin America. Equally pernicious, though often less obvious, the present world order has institutionalized persecution and deprivation of hundreds of millions of children, particularly in the Third World, and in this way kills countless innocents each year. These systemic atrocities are for the most part not even regarded as crimes, but instead are written off by most of the world’s media and intellectual leadership as acts of God or of nature whose origin remains a mystery. It is individual human beings who make the day-to-day decisions that create genocide, reward mass murder, and ease the escape of the guilty. But social systems usually protect these individuals from responsibility for ‘authorized’ acts, in part by providing rationalizations that present systemic brutality as a necessary evil. Some observers may claim that men such as Allen Dulles, Robert Murphy, et al. were gripped by an ideal of a higher good when they preserved the German business elite as a hedge against revolution in Europe. But in the long run, their intentions have little to do with the real issue, which is the character to take on the appearance of wisdom, reason, or even justice among the men and women who lead society. Progress in the control of genocide depends in part on confronting those who would legitimize and legalize the act. The cycle of genocide can be broken through relatively simple—but politically difficult—reforms in the international legal system. It is essential to identify and condemn the deeds that contribute to genocide, particularly when such deeds have assumed a mantle of respectability, and to ensure just and evenhanded punishment for those responsible. But the temptation will be to accept the inducements and rationalizations society offers in exchange for keeping one’s mouth shut. The choice is in our hands.”
(The Splendid Blond Beast: Money, Law and Genocide in the 20th Century; Christopher Simpson; Common Courage Press [SC]; Copyright 1995 by Christopher Simpson; ISBN 1-56751-062-0; pp. 286-7.)

2. Turning to the subject of “the socialism of fools”—anti-Semitism—the program sets forth an eloquent column that summarizes the problem. Of particular significance is author Hanson’s fingering of the term “neo-conservatives” as a term used by the so-called progressive sector to mean “Jews.” “Who recently said: ‘These Jews started 19 Crusades. The 19th was World War I. Why? Only to build Israel.’ Some holdover Nazi? Hardly. It was former Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan of Turkey, a NATO ally. He went on to claim that the Jews — whom he refers to as ‘bacteria’ — controlled China, India and Japan, and ran the United States. . . . A new virulent strain of the old anti-Semitism is spreading worldwide. This hate—of a magnitude not seen in over 70 years—is not just espoused by Iran’s loony president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, or radical jihadists. . . Here at home, ‘neo-conservative’ has become synonymous with a supposed Jewish cabal of Washington insiders who hijacked U.S. policy to take us to war for Israel’s interest. That our State Department is at the mercy of a Jewish lobby is the theme of a recent high-profile book by professors at Harvard University and the University of Chicago. . . .”
(“Looking for a Scapegoat: by Victor Davis Hanson; San Francisco Chronicle; 9/13/07; p. B7.)

3. Before turning to the political/economic circumstances surrounding the publication of the Israel Lobby paper at Harvard, it should be noted that the “Israel Lobby” is being scapegoated for the Bush administration’s disastrous decision to invade Iraq, despite the rather obvious fact that the invasion was motivated by—surprise, surprise—oil. In this context, note that the President and Vice-President of the United States are former petroleum industry CEO’s from the state of Texas. Note also that the impetus to invade Iraq was first disclosed in a paper generated for the administration by a Rice University think tank headed up by fellow Texan (and Bush I administration veteran) James Baker. (For more about this report and its connections to the “California energy crisis” of 2000-2001, see FTR#420.) Interestingly and significantly, that same James Baker co-chaired (with former representative Lee Hamilton) a commission on how to disengage from Iraq. The recommendation was that, for the Iraqi mess to be resolved, Israel must make some concessions in its perpetual war against the Palestinians and other Arabs, a stance that tends to reinforce the illusion that “the Jews” were responsible for the invasion.

4. The above column alludes to the recent publication of a book by two professors alleging that a Jewish cabal controls the State Department and U.S. foreign policy. That book derives from a paper presented by Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. The publication of that paper followed shortly after Prince Alwaleed of Saudi Arabia donated $20 million to Harvard to promote Middle Eastern studies and Christian/Muslim understanding. “No Jews Allowed!” [Note that the paper was originally commissioned by the Atlantic magazine, which declined to publish it because of its lack of scholarly integrity!] “ . . . The Saudis and their allies have not been shy about supplementing their considerable leverage in the U.S. by targeting expenditures to affect the debate over Middle East policy by funding think tanks, Middle East studies programs, advocacy groups, community centers and other institutions. To take one obvious example, just last year Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal donated $20 million each to Harvard and Georgetown Universities for programs in Islamic studies. Prince Alwaleed, chairman of a Riyadh-based conglomerate, is the fellow whose $10 million donation to the Twin Towers Fund following the Sept. 11 attacks was rejected by then-Mayor Rudolph Giuliani after the Saudi Prince suggested that the U.S. ‘re-examine its policies in the Middle East and adopt a more balance stance toward the Palestinians.’ Georgetown and Harvard had no apparent qualms about accepting Prince Alwaleed’s money. The director of Georgetown’s newly-renamed Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center rejected any suggestion that the Saudi magnate was attempting to use Saudi oil wealth to influence American policy in the Middle East. . . . Although the aggressive deployment of petrodollars and oil-based influence from foreign sources aimed at advancing a pro-Arab line constitutes ‘nothing wrong’ as far as Israel’s critics are concerned, a new political fashion holds that there is something very wrong indeed about American Jews and other American backers of Israel expressing their support for Israel and urging their political leaders to join them in that support. Our major newspapers and networks, with correspondents in Israel political system that is a free-for-all and an astonishingly vibrant and self-critical Israeli press, report daily on every twist and turn of the conflict and are very frequently critical of Israel. As for American campuses, most objective observers would have little difficulty concluding that far from being criticism-free, they are in fact dominated by critics of Israel. Clearly, as strangleholds on criticism go, whatever stranglehold the pro-Israel community has on debate in the U.S. is a very loose one indeed. . . .”
(“Anti-Semitism and the Anti-Israel Lobby” by Jeff Robbins; The Wall Street Journal; 9/7/2007; p. A15.)

5. Although Harvard has gone to great lengths to underscore that the paper is not an official stance taken by the University, it is difficult not to assume that the paper is a “Harvard” paper. Indeed, note the Internet page on which the paper’s title appears—how would one not conclude that the paper was published by Harvard? The paper can be viewed here:
(“The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy” by John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt; 3/13/2006.)

6. Again, although the University removed its logo from the paper, it is Mr. Emory’s view that Harvard’s disclaimer is somewhat disingenuous. Check out the page above—what would you conclude when viewing this? “The Kennedy School of Government (KSG) removed its logo from a controversial paper published last week by Academic Dean Stephen M. Walt and the University of Chicago’s John J. Mearsheimer. A disclaimer stating that the views expressed belong only to the authors was also made more prominent on the working paper’s cover. . . .”
(“KSG Seeks Distance from Paper” by Paras D. Bhayani; Harvard Crimson; 3/24/2006.)

7. Supplementing discussion of the Walt/Mearsheimer paper, Mr. Emory notes that Harvard’s “presentation” of the work follows shortly on the appointment of a Muslim—Mohamed El-Erian–as head of the Harvard endowment fund. Mr. Emory’s point is that money often determines popular ideology and the forms that it takes. With the enormous amounts of capital flowing into the coffers of the petroleum industry and the nations and individuals associated with it, we should not, perhaps, be surprised at the upsurge in anti-Semitism. Of particular significance is the fact that Pimco is a subsidiary of key German insurer Allianz, one of the German core corporations and—as such—a key component of the Bormann capital network and the Underground Reich. Note, also, that Allianz has been a target of litigation by the families of Holocaust survivors, who charge that the company held onto assets due to them. (For more about corporate Germany and its links to the Underground Reich, see—among other programs—FTR#305. Serious researchers should download and read the book Martin Bormann: Nazi in Exile, available on the Spitfire website. For more about Allianz, search the Spitfire website. For more about Allianz and the Holocaust litigation, do a key word search on your favorite search engine.) “Harvard University’s endowment, known for its strong investment gains, is now suffering a significant loss. Mohamed El-Erian, head of Harvard Management Co., is heading back to the West Coast, positioning himself to be heir apparent at Pacific Investment Management Co., the money-management titan. . . . Mr. El-Erian, 49 years old, will start in January at Pimco, a unit of German Insurer Allianz SE, as the Newport Beach, Calif., firm’s first co-chief investment officer and co-chief executive officer. . . .[Emphasis added.] ”
(“Harvard’s Loss: El-Erian” by Craig Karmin and Ian McDonald; The Wall Street Journal; 9/12/2007; p. C1.)

8. El-Erian’s return to Pimco occurred as Pimco is preparing to take advantage of the subprime crisis. “Another vulture is circling over the subprime-related market. Pacific Investment Management Co., a unit of Germany’s Allianz SE, is planning to launch a $2 billion distressed-debt fund, joining a list of money-management firms hoping to buy beaten-down mortgage securities on the cheap. . .”
(“Pimco Starts Distressed-Debt Fund” by Craig Karmin; The Wall Street Journal; 9/13/2007; p. C2.)

9. One of the factors driving the resurgence in anti-Semitism is a clever psychological warfare campaign waged by the Arabs to gain sympathy for their side by creating phony atrocities supposedly committed by the Israeli armed forces. (Mr. Emory discussed this at some length in FTR#’s 564, 565, 566.) One of the most dramatic, highly publicized and emblematic of these was the death of a boy named Mohammed al-Dura, allegedly killed by Israeli Defense Forces in a cross-fire with Palestinian combatants. That case is once again in the news as litigation in France is generating a call to review the raw footage produced by the French television station that filmed the incident. There is serious evidence that the incident may have received distorted coverage or may even have been fabricated altogether. Mr. Emory recommends that people view an online video about some of the falsified Israeli atrocities, titled “Pallywood.”

Note: Mr. Emory does not consider all of the information in the video to be compelling—some is open to interpretation different from that of the narrator. However some of the footage, such as Mohammed al-Dura calmly raising his head to peek at the camera and then calmly laying back down again are very damning to the official version of the case. Al-Dura is not behaving like someone with a fatal abdominal wound from an M-16. By the same token, the footage of an allegedly “dead” or gravely wounded Palestinian lifting his head to check his cell phone messages and then calmly playing “dead” again is revealing. Most alarming of all is the fact that “60 Minutes” presented some of this material altogether uncritically. The film is available at: http://www.seconddraft.org/cur_invest.php. Two other sites to be examined in this context are: http://www.seconddraft.org/movies.php and an analytical treatment of the “Pallywood” documentary: http://www.theaugeanstables.com/category/pallywood/ .

“Mohammed al-Dura’s gut-wrenching death is running again on television screens across the world, seven years after the 12-year-old boy died in his father’s arms in a hail of bullets. An appeals court in Paris has demanded to see the exclusive footage shot by state-owned France 2 television to resolve a libel case brought by the channel and its veteran Jerusalem bureau chief Charles Enderlin against a commentator who accused them of fabricating the Sept. 30, 2000, incident on the second day of the intifada uprising. The images of Mohammed’s death after he was caught in cross fire between Palestinian gunmen and Israeli soldiers at the Netzarim junction outside Gaza City became the most potent icon of the Palestinian uprising and perhaps the most frequently broadcast image of the Palestinian-Israeli struggle in the Arab world. The boy has been mentioned by Osama bin Laden, and his photograph could be seen on a wall where the American journalist Daniel Pearl was murdered in Pakistan in 2002. Streets, parks, youth camps and public buildings have been named in Mohammed’s honor by the Palestinian Authority, and some suicide bombers said they martyred themselves in tribute to his memory. . . .”
(“Boy Killed at Start of Intifada Back in News” by Matthew Kalman; San Francisco Chronicle; 10/4/2007; p. A8.)

10. Indicative of the growing institutionalized anti-Semitism in American academia is the formal exclusion—recently rescinded—of Israelis from a program run by the University of California that gives business training to residents of countries of the Middle East. “A U.S. State Department-funded University of California program which provides business training for residents of the Middle East specifically excluded Israeli Jews – until Jewish journalists protested. The University of California has now altered the program’s eligibility requirement that initially barred Israeli Jews. The turnaround in policy also may have saved the State Department, whose Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI) finances the program, from having to provide an embarrassing explanation. MEPI also selects the participants. . . .”
(“Univ. of Cal. Backs Down from ‘No Jews Allowed’ Program” by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu; IsraeNationalNews.com; 10/03/07.)

11. Two video productions are being generated by a couple of documentary filmmakers. One is a DVD of a three-lecture series called “The First Refuge of a Scoundrel: The Relationship Between Fascism and Religion.” In addition, there will soon be a documentary about Mr. Emory, titled “The Anti-Fascist.” For more about this project, visit TheAntiFascist.com.

Discussion

One comment for “FTR #613 The Socialism of Fools, Part 2: American Dreyfus”

  1. There’s been a big shakeup in the leadership at PIMCO: Mohamed El-Erian is out and as a result there’s no heir apparent for Bill Gross. So the future of PIMCO’s leadership is suddenly very much in question:

    Pimco’s Gross declares El-Erian is ‘trying to undermine me’
    Reuters
    Published: Friday, 7 Mar 2014 | 1:35 AM ET

    Bill Gross, the co-founder and co-chief investment officer of Pacific Investment Management Co, has accused departing CEO Mohamed El-Erian of seeking to “undermine” him by talking to The Wall Street Journal about deepening tensions between the two executives who had been jointly running the world’s largest bond house.

    Gross told Reuters that he had “evidence” that El-Erian “wrote” a February 24 article in the Journal, which described the worsening relationship between the two men as Pimco’s performance deteriorated last year, including a showdown in which they squared off against each other in front of more than a dozen colleagues at the firm’s Newport Beach, California headquarters.

    Gross, who oversaw more than $1.91 trillion in assets as of the end of last year and who is known on Wall Street as the ‘Bond King’, said in a phone call to Reuters last Friday: “I’m so sick of Mohamed trying to undermine me.”

    When asked if Reuters could see the evidence about El-Erian and the allegation he was involved in the article, Gross said: “You’re on his side. Great, he’s got you, too, wrapped around his charming right finger.”

    He said he knew that El-Erian, who had been widely seen as the heir apparent to Gross but is now due to leave in mid-March, had been in contact with Reuters as well as the Wall Street Journal.

    Gross indicated he had been monitoring El-Erian’s phone calls.

    A Pimco spokesman said in an emailed statement: “Mr. Gross did not make the statements Reuters attributes to him. He categorically denies saying this firm ever listened in on Mr. El-Erian’s phone calls or that Mr. El-Erian ‘wrote’ any previous media article.”

    He added: “As a regulated company, PIMCO is required to retain records of its employees’ communications to help ensure compliance with the firm’s policies.”

    Pimco’s owner, German financial services company Allianz SE, was not available for comment.

    El-Erian, who was named to a part-time position as chief economic adviser to Allianz last week, could not be reached for comment.

    When asked about Gross’s claim that El-Erian “wrote” the article, a spokeswoman for Dow Jones, the publisher of The Wall Street Journal, said: “This is an astoundingly incorrect claim about a thoroughly reported article that was in the best tradition of The Wall Street Journal.”

    Some Pimco Investors on edge

    The latest signs of a rift between Gross and El-Erian, who once praised each other fulsomely, come as Gross is grappling with clients who are also turning their backs on the very asset class that has made him famous.

    That is happening partly because the Federal Reserve continues to reduce its controversial bond buying that has provided stimulus to the U.S. and world economies.

    Pimco saw its assets under management shrink by $80 billion in 2013 due to outflows and negative returns, according to Morningstar. In February, Gross’s flagship Pimco Total Return Fund had $1.6 billion of net outflows, its 10th consecutive month of outflows, and it lagged 71 percent of its peers with a return of just 0.52 percent last month, according to Morningstar. In 2013, it suffered a negative total return of nearly 2 percent.

    In mid-February, Gross sought to reassure the firm’s clients about the new leadership structure he has put in place since Pimco’s announcement of El-Erian’s departure on January 21.

    Gross called his announcement of six new deputy chief investment officers a “significant improvement” from Pimco’s previous structure, which concentrated nearly all investment strategy decision making onto the shoulders of Gross and El-Erian.

    “I’ve never seen Bill and Pimco scrutinized like this before. This is the most attention I have seen on them,” said Eric Jacobson, Morningstar senior analyst who has covered Pimco for nearly two decades. “A couple of high-profile stumbles and mediocre showings, coupled with some outflows – and with no identified successor for life after Bill – clearly has some investors on edge.”

    Still, Jacobson said that Gross holds one of the best records in the bond industry with the Pimco Total Return fund’s 10-year and 15-year annualized returns at 6.04 percent and 6.68 percent, respectively. The fund’s returns are beating 96 percent of its peers for those time periods, he added.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | March 7, 2014, 10:09 am

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