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The Company they Keep: Mearsheimer, Walt and “The Socialism of Fools”

John Mearsheimer (left) and Stephen Walt: Why is this man smil­ing?

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash dri­ve that can be obtained here. (The flash dri­ve includes the anti-fas­cist books avail­able on this site.)

COMMENT: In FTR #613, we explored the Mearsheimer/Walt book on the Israel Lob­by against the back­ground of what a French ana­lyst once termed “the social­ism of fools”–anti-Semitism.

A review linked below by Wal­ter Rus­sell Mead accu­rate­ly char­ac­ter­ized the book as not anti-Semit­ic, but a book that anti-Semi­tes would love. 

It now devel­ops that Mearsheimer has run pro­fes­sion­al inter­fer­ence for a wild-eyed anti-Semi­te named Gilad Atz­mon. Osten­si­bly an Israeli Jew (like Wik­ileaks lynch­pin “Israel Shamir” aka Joran Jer­mas, linked to the same pro­fes­sion­al milieu), Atz­mon has not only blamed the Holo­caust on the Jews them­selves, but has hint­ed that it nev­er actu­al­ly occurred, as well as giv­ing cre­dence to “blood libel”–the medieval alle­ga­tion that Jews killed gen­tile babies to use their blood to make Passover mat­zoh.

(One won­ders if Atzmon/Jermas might be descen­dants of some of the Nazis who were giv­en Jewish/Israeli cov­er with expert­ly-forged doc­u­ments craft­ed by con­cen­tra­tion camp inmates. We have touched on this in some of our dis­cus­sions with John Lof­tus. These are dis­tinct both from the “Bor­mann Jews” we’ve spo­ken about, as well as the Israeli right-wing itself, which has a fas­cist her­itage.)

Notable for its unbri­dled, prim­i­tive venal­i­ty, the views of Atz­mon could­n’t be more unequiv­o­cal. It is pos­si­ble that Mearsheimer had­n’t done any home­work about Atz­mon before writ­ing a glow­ing jack­et pro­mo for his book. Nonethe­less, Mearsheimer has unequiv­o­cal­ly defend­ed his actions.

In his blog, Mearsheimer’s erst­while co-author Stephen Walt gave him an oppor­tu­ni­ty to rein­force his endorse­ment of Atz­mon. 

In addi­tion, Walt has penned a piece as a guest con­trib­u­tor for Mid­dle East Mon­i­tor  (MEMO, not to be con­fused with MEMRI), that serves as a spearcar­ri­er for Hamas.

Essen­tial­ly a rework­ing of the Mearsheimer/Walt pre­sen­ta­tion on the Israel Lob­by, Walt’s MEMO piece is, in and of itself, unre­mark­able. What is very, very note­wor­thy is the cal­iber of the oth­er fea­tured com­men­ta­tors and writ­ers in MEMO, the Islamo-fas­cist nature of which is beyond intel­li­gent dis­pute.

In an upcom­ing post, we will tack­le the Israeli/Arab con­flict and rumi­nate about it against the back­ground of more impor­tant dynam­ics.

Suf­fice it to say that there is, of course, an Israel Lob­by and it has influ­ence. That influ­ence how­ev­er, pales in com­par­i­son with the unchal­lenged pow­er of the fos­sil fuels/Muslim Brotherhood/Saudi lob­by, which dom­i­nates the transna­tion­al cor­po­rate land­scape, the Amer­i­can polit­i­cal infra-struc­ture and the GOP of Karl Rove and Grover Norquist.

None of the crit­ics of Mearsheimer and Walt excerpt­ed here have done in con­nec­tion with their book is to–“follow the mon­ey.” In FTR #613, we not­ed the back sto­ry to the Mearsheimer/Walt book:

  • In 2002, Bank al-Taqwa direc­tor, Islamist and neo-Nazi Achmed Huber states: “We will bring down the Israel lob­by and change for­eign pol­icy. We’ll do it in Amer­ica. When it hap­pens, you’ll under­stand.”
  • Mohamed El-Ari­an, the Egypt­ian-born CFO of PIMCO–the bond divi­sion of Ger­man insur­er Allianz–becomes head of the lucra­tive and influ­en­tial Har­vard endow­ment fund. (One of Ger­many’s “core cor­po­ra­tions,” Allianz has been the focus of lit­i­ga­tion by Holo­caust sur­vivors. It is undoubt­ed­ly a major ele­ment of the Under­ground Reich. Head­ed up by Ron Paul sup­port­er William Gross, PIMCO was at the epi­cen­ter of the bailout gam­bit fol­low­ing the 2008 finan­cial melt­down.)
  • Mus­lim Broth­er­hood financier Prince Alwaleed con­tributes mil­lions of dol­lars to Har­vard to pro­mote “Mus­lim-Chris­t­ian understanding”–not Muslim/Christian/Jewish under­stand­ing, you’ll notice. (At the same time, Alwaleed gives mil­lions to George­town Uni­ver­si­ty to promote–again–Muslim/Christian under­stand­ing. No Jews.)
  • Mearsheimer and Walt (the lat­ter a pro­fes­sor at Har­vard) pub­lish their book.
  • Mohamed El-Ari­an returns to PIMCO as CFO.
  • “Mis­sion Accom­plished!”

Stephen Walt and the Islamist Lob­by by Petra Mar­quardt-Big­man; The Alge­mein­er; 3/28/2013.

EXCERPT: When John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt pub­lished their book “The Israel Lob­by” in 2007, the respect­ed Amer­i­can schol­ar Wal­ter Rus­sell Mead argued in a very crit­i­cal review that this “may be a book that anti-Semi­tes will love, but it is not nec­es­sar­i­ly an anti-Semit­ic book.” Mead also not­ed that the book was “writ­ten in haste” and pre­dict­ed that it would “be repent­ed at leisure.”

As it turned out, the assump­tion that Mearsheimer and Walt would have any regrets about writ­ing “a book that anti-Semi­tes will love” was all too opti­mistic.

Some four years lat­er, Mead com­ment­ed on reports that John Mearsheimer had endorsed a book writ­ten by “a Hitler Apol­o­gist and Holo­caust Revi­sion­ist.” Mead not­ed polite­ly that “this is not nor­mal­ly the intel­lec­tu­al com­pa­ny a Dis­tin­guished Pro­fes­sor at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Chica­go is expect­ed to keep” and he sug­gest­ed that “we may even hear some thoughts from Pro­fes­sor Walt about his co-author.”

Unfor­tu­nate­ly, this was again an all too opti­mistic expec­ta­tion, because Stephen Walt prompt­ly used his blog at For­eign Pol­i­cy to give his co-author a promi­nent plat­form to dou­ble down on his endorse­ment of the book in ques­tion and its author Gilad Atz­mon. . . .

. . . . At this point it was becom­ing increas­ing­ly hard to avoid the con­clu­sion that both Walt and Mearsheimer didn’t mind at all if their writ­ings appealed to peo­ple with open­ly anti­se­mit­ic views. Indeed, whether inten­tion­al­ly or not, there can be lit­tle doubt that Walt and Mearsheimer have done much to main­stream anti­semitism. . . .

. . . . Now Stephen Walt has tak­en anoth­er step to con­firm this con­clu­sion. He has been fea­tured as the March 2013 Guest Writer for the Mid­dle East Mon­i­tor (MEMO), a web­site whose self-described mis­sion is pro­mot­ing “the Pales­tin­ian cause” by reach­ing out “to opin­ion mak­ers and deci­sion mak­ers in a delib­er­ate, orga­nized and sus­tained man­ner.”

How­ev­er, as far as MEMO is con­cerned, the “Pales­tin­ian cause” is real­ly the cause of Hamas. It is there­fore no coin­ci­dence that, togeth­er with their esteemed guest writer Stephen Walt, MEMO also fea­tured a “New strate­gic doc­u­ment” by Hamas leader Khalid Mishaal (also spelled Mashal or Meshaal). . . .

. . . . As Wal­ter Rus­sell Mead observed, this may not be quite the com­pa­ny that a dis­tin­guished pro­fes­sor is expect­ed to keep, but Harvard’s Robert and Renee Belfer Pro­fes­sor of Inter­na­tion­al Affairs Stephen Walt was appar­ent­ly hap­py to be a MEMO Guest Writer.

Walt’s sup­pos­ed­ly “exclu­sive” con­tri­bu­tion to MEMO is enti­tled “Oba­ma, Amer­i­can Jew­ry and the prospects for Mid­dle East peace;” but as it hap­pens, he was not the only writer on this top­ic fea­tured by MEMO. There was anoth­er piece by one of MEMO’s well-known con­trib­u­tors , Abdel Bari Atwan, edi­tor of the Lon­don-based Ara­bic lan­guage news­pa­per Al Quds Al Ara­bi, who prides him­self on his “often con­tro­ver­sial opin­ions” that include admi­ra­tion for Osama bin Laden, endorse­ments of ter­ror attacks against Israelis and the dec­la­ra­tion that he would “dance with delight in Trafal­gar Square” if Iran bom­bard­ed Israel.

Unsur­pris­ing­ly, Atwan’s piece was enti­tled “Oba­ma, the Israel syco­phant;” and Atwan com­plained bit­ter­ly that Oba­ma “has dis­ap­point­ed us and remind­ed us of Uncle Tom in the famous Amer­i­can nov­el.” . . .

. . . . Since doc­u­ment­ing the appalling views prop­a­gat­ed by MEMO could eas­i­ly fill a book, I will for now just high­light that the site’s cur­rent offer­ings include an utter­ly lunatic “report” claim­ing that “Israeli police enable rab­bis and set­tlers to mark Passover inside Al-Aqsa Mosque.”

Need­less to say, MEMO is also among the ardent admir­ers of Sheik Raed Salah, leader of the Islam­ic Movement’s North­ern Branch in Israel, who sub­scribes to the medieval libel that Jews use the blood of Chris­t­ian chil­dren to make Mat­zo bread.

Of course, Pro­fes­sor Walt may not have known any of this when he agreed to pro­vide MEMO with an “exclu­sive” – but just a few moments of googling could have enlight­ened him and led him, for exam­ple, to this excel­lent post by Alan John­son.

Among the unsa­vory exam­ples of MEMO’s con­nec­tions list­ed by John­son is Lord Nazir Ahmed of Rother­ham, who host­ed a book launch in the House of Lords for the noto­ri­ous Israel Shamir in 2005. As John­son explains:

“Shamir’s speech, report­ed [by] The Times jour­nal­ist Stephen Pol­lard, includ­ed these opin­ions: ‘All the [polit­i­cal] par­ties are Zion­ist-infil­trat­ed.’ ‘Your news­pa­pers belong to Zion­ists . . . Jews indeed own, con­trol and edit a big share of mass media, this main­stay of Impe­r­i­al think­ing.’ ‘In the Mid­dle East we have just one rea­son for wars, ter­ror and trouble—and that is Jew­ish suprema­cy dri­ve.’” . . .

“John Mearsheimer Dances with the Dark” by Wal­ter Rus­sell Mead; Amer­i­can Inter­est; 9/23/2011.

EXCERPT: . . . . Pro­fes­sor Mearsheimer, how­ev­er, seems to have danced with the dark side a lit­tle more inti­mate­ly. From Jeff Gold­berg over at the Atlantic (and, by the way, if any read­ers catch them­selves think­ing that “of course” it would be a Jew who report­ed this news, you may want to recon­sid­er just how free you are from cer­tain ugly prej­u­dices) comes the news that Pro­fes­sor Mearsheimer has blurbed a gen­uine­ly anti-Semit­ic book by a deeply twist­ed anti-Semi­te — who hap­pens also to be Jew­ish.

The author Mearsheimer endorsed argues among oth­er things that we should re-open the ques­tion of whether medieval Jews actu­al­ly used to kill Chris­t­ian chil­dren and use their blood to make mat­zo for Passover. He points out that poor Adolf Hitler’s actions against Ger­man Jews only came after US Jews called a boy­cott on Ger­man goods fol­low­ing Hitler’s appoint­ment as Ger­man Chan­cel­lor. Gosh — if it weren’t for those pushy, aggres­sive Jews and their annoy­ing boy­cotts, the Holo­caust might not have hap­pened!

Or did it hap­pen? Gilad Atz­mon thinks we should take anoth­er look. Says Atz­mon:

I think that 65 years after the lib­er­a­tion of Auschwitz, we must be enti­tled to start to ask the nec­es­sary ques­tions. We should ask for some con­clu­sive his­tor­i­cal evi­dence and argu­ments rather than fol­low a reli­gious nar­ra­tive that is sus­tained by polit­i­cal pres­sure and laws. [empha­sis J. Gold­berg]

Via Mea­dia agrees with part of this; Holo­caust denial should be fought with argu­ment and evi­dence rather than laws, and Euro­pean laws on this top­ic are mis­guid­ed. But this is not nor­mal­ly the intel­lec­tu­al com­pa­ny a Dis­tin­guished Pro­fes­sor at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Chica­go is expect­ed to keep.
Writes Pro­fes­sor Mearsheimer about Atzmon’s lat­est book:

“Gilad Atz­mon has writ­ten a fas­ci­nat­ing and provoca­tive book on Jew­ish iden­ti­ty in the mod­ern world. He shows how assim­i­la­tion and lib­er­al­ism are mak­ing it incred­i­bly dif­fi­cult for Jews in the Dias­po­ra to main­tain a pow­er­ful sense of their ‘Jew­ish­ness.’ Pan­icked Jew­ish lead­ers, he argues, have turned to Zion­ism (blind loy­al­ty to Israel) and scare­mon­ger­ing (the threat of anoth­er Holo­caust) to keep the tribe unit­ed and dis­tinct from the sur­round­ing goy­im. As Atzmon’s own case demon­strates, this strat­e­gy is not work­ing and is caus­ing many Jews great anguish. The Wan­der­ing Who? Should be wide­ly read by Jews and non-Jews alike.”

Per­haps Pro­fes­sor Mearsheimer hadn’t read the book thor­ough­ly before blurb­ing it. Per­haps the book itself (which Via Mea­dia has not read) is less incen­di­ary than some of Mr Atzmon’s oth­er state­ments, and Pro­fes­sor Mearsheimer did not know the whole sto­ry when he agreed to blurb the book. Con­ceiv­ably, Pro­fes­sor Mearsheimer thought that since he could oppose the Israel lob­by with­out being an anti-Semi­te, all oth­er crit­ics of Israel were sim­i­lar­ly as benign. If there is a good expla­na­tion that makes Mr. Mearsheimer look impru­dent and unlucky rather than com­plic­it, we will be hap­py to share it with our read­ers. . . .

“John Mearsheimer Endors­es a Hitler Apol­o­gist and Holo­caust Revi­sion­ist” by Jef­frey Gold­berg; The Atlantic; 9/23/2011.

EXCERPT: Gilad Atz­mon is a jazz sax­o­phon­ist who lives in Lon­don and who has a side gig dis­sem­i­nat­ing the wildest sort of anti-Semit­ic con­spir­a­cy the­o­ries. He is an ex-Israeli and a self-pro­claimed “self-hater” who traf­fics in Holo­caust denial and all sorts of grotesque, medieval anti-Jew­ish calum­nies. Here is a small sam­ple of his lunatic thoughts (bold text is mine):

I think that 65 years after the lib­er­a­tion of Auschwitz, we must be enti­tled to start to ask the nec­es­sary ques­tions. We should ask for some con­clu­sive his­tor­i­cal evi­dence and argu­ments rather than fol­low a reli­gious nar­ra­tive that is sus­tained by polit­i­cal pres­sure and laws. We should strip the holo­caust of its Judeo-cen­tric excep­tion­al sta­tus and treat it as an his­tor­i­cal chap­ter that belongs to a cer­tain time and place.

Six­ty-five years after the lib­er­a­tion of Auschwitz we should reclaim our his­to­ry and ask why? Why were the Jews hat­ed? Why did Euro­pean peo­ple stand up against their next door neigh­bours? Why are the Jews hat­ed in the Mid­dle East, sure­ly they had a chance to open a new page in their trou­bled his­to­ry?

If they gen­uine­ly planned to do so, as the ear­ly Zion­ists claimed, why did they fail? Why did Amer­i­ca tight­en its immi­gra­tion laws amid the grow­ing dan­ger to Euro­pean Jews? We should also ask for what pur­pose do the holo­caust denial laws serve? What is the holo­caust reli­gion there to con­ceal? As long as we fail to ask ques­tions, we will be sub­ject­ed to Zion­ists and their Neo­cons agents’ plots. We will con­tin­ue killing in the name of Jew­ish suf­fer­ing. We will main­tain our com­plic­i­ty in West­ern impe­ri­al­ist crimes against human­i­ty...

...The Holo­caust became the new West­ern reli­gion. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, it is the most sin­is­ter reli­gion known to man. It is a license to kill, to flat­ten, no nuke, to wipe, to rape, to loot and to eth­ni­cal­ly cleanse. It made vengeance and revenge into a West­ern val­ue.

Atz­mon also believes that the Jews per­se­cut­ed Hitler:

Not many peo­ple are aware that in March 1933, long before Hitler became the undis­put­ed leader of Ger­many and began restrict­ing the rights of Ger­man Jews, the Amer­i­can Jew­ish Con­gress announced a mas­sive protest at Madi­son Square Gar­dens and called for an Amer­i­can boy­cott of Ger­man goods...

....Jew­ish texts tend to glaze over the fact that Hitler’s March 28 1933, order­ing a boy­cott against Jew­ish stores and goods, was an esca­la­tion in direct response to the dec­la­ra­tion of war on Ger­many by the world­wide Jew­ish lead­er­ship.

He has also sug­gest­ed that Jews spe­cial­ize in the traf­fick­ing of body parts:

Fagin is the ulti­mate plun­der­er, a child exploiter and usurer. Shy­lock is the blood-thirsty mer­chant. With Fagin and Shy­lock in mind Israeli bar­barism and organ traf­fick­ing seem to be just oth­er events in an end­less hell­ish con­tin­u­um. . . .

. . . In this new book, Atz­mon sug­gests, among oth­er things, that schol­ars should reopen the ques­tion of medieval blood libels lev­eled against Jews– accu­sa­tions that Jews used the blood of Chris­t­ian chil­dren to make mat­zo, and which pro­voked count­less mas­sacres of Jews in many dif­fer­ent coun­tries. . . .

. . . . Gli­ad Atz­mon, by the way, is also on record say­ing this:

“I believe that from cer­tain ide­o­log­i­cal per­spec­tive, Israel is actu­al­ly far worse than Nazi Ger­many.”

“Mearsheimer Responds to Gold­berg’s Lat­est Smear” by Stephen Walt; For­eign Pol­i­cy; 9/26/2011.

EXCERPT: . . . Gold­berg main­tains that Atz­mon is a cat­e­gor­i­cal­ly rep­re­hen­si­ble per­son, and accus­es him of being a Holo­caust denier and an apol­o­gist for Hitler. These are two of the most dev­as­tat­ing charges that can be lev­eled against any­one. Accord­ing to Gold­berg, the mere fact that I blurbed Atz­mon’s book is deci­sive evi­dence that I share Atz­mon’s sup­pos­ed­ly odi­ous views. This indict­ment of me is cap­tured in the title of Gold­berg’s piece: “John Mearsheimer Endors­es a Hitler Apol­o­gist and Holo­caust Revi­sion­ist.”

This charge is so ludi­crous that it is hard to know where to start my response. . . .

. . . . Equal­ly impor­tant, Gilad Atz­mon is nei­ther a Holo­caust denier nor an apol­o­gist for Hitler. . . .

 

 

Discussion

3 comments for “The Company they Keep: Mearsheimer, Walt and “The Socialism of Fools””

  1. More on Gilad Atz­mon here- also more on left-wing anti­semitism and has some links talk­ing about its links to Islam­o­fas­cism. The rest of the site is good too, cov­er­ing in depth the far left­’s hatred of Jews.

    http://www.paulbogdanor.com/antisemitism.html

    http://www.paulbogdanor.com/left.html (scroll down- you will see the far left­’s sup­port and col­lab­o­ra­tion with fas­cists, eugeni­cists and jihadists).

    Posted by Tembel | March 31, 2013, 12:35 am
  2. @Tembel: Just vis­it­ed. Some decent stuff, but it’s far from the best source and some of these things linked are down­right ques­tion­able. He also also says NOTHING about right­ist anti-Semi­tism or sup­port for jihadists, eugeni­cists, etc.

    Posted by Steven | March 31, 2013, 1:41 pm
  3. Steven — left sup­port and col­lab­o­ra­tion with fas­cists, eugeni­cists, and jihadists are the final four ele­ments, at the bot­tom of the page.

    Posted by KCarroll | April 1, 2013, 12:46 pm

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