The American Left and the Middle East: The Case of the Nation Magazine, II.
This was bound to happen. I was just waiting for this. Wake up the children, and free the pigs from the barn. The Nation magazine has spoken. Oh, ya.
The Nation magazine is mouthing off on the Middle East. Let us see. First, they talk about "the spreading of violence in Lebanon and Gaza." Spreading? Is this a disease or a flue? No, o Nation magazine. Israel is bombing and occupying in both cases. Violence is not naturally and blamelessly spreading, ok? And then it talks about Israel's doctrine of "absolute security." Security? As soon as you invoke security in Western discourse on the Middle East, you know that the person is standing solidly behind Israeli bombings, the nation is no exception. Notice that the word security is only exclusively reserved for the Jews, and not for the Arabs, which only underlines the fundamentally racist premise of the Western leftist attitude toward the Arab-Israeli conflict, not to mention the rest in the West.
And then the Nation speaks of "disproportionate" response. Zionist propaganda has infested both words here: "disproportionate" and "response." Who is responding to whom? Arabs claim that they have been responding to Zionist infliction of violence on Arabs which started long before the creation of Israel, and yet Israel is always perceived to be responding, even responding to Arab audacity for living in Palestine for centuries. How dare they, argues the Nation. The second key word here is "disproportionate," which means that the Nation does not disagree with Israel over the principle of aggression and murder, but over the number. So the Nation is saying to Israel that it would not mind if Israel kills scores of Arab civilians, but that it should kill less than a certain number. So 100 Lebanese civilians, instead of 200. Is that it, Nation magazine? How many Arab children do you permit Israel to kill, o editor of the Nation magazine? Please let me know so that we know where we stand with you. The racism of the Nation magazine and its editor then gets revealed more clearly in the following sentence: when the article speaks of "proving counterproductive to Israel's own security". This is the racism of Tikkun magazine that is embedded in many American leftist discourse on the Middle East.
So the criterion and the term of reference is always what is good for Israeli Jews; the rest are a footnote to the narrative. A sideshow, really. So the Nation would really support massive bombings and massacres of Arab civilians IF it is in Israel's interest. This is the crux of the Nation magazine's position.
And notice that the editorial of an ostensibly leftist magazine expresses more concern for the right-wing governments of Lebanon and PA than for the civilians of Lebanon and Palestine. At least we know where the Nation stands: with Dahlan and Hariri Inc. And the paragraph ends with a plea similar to that of Husni Mubarak: that Israeli murders are bad because they radicalize the sand niggers of the regions. And then the Nation sheds a tear or two over the "Cedar Revolution"--and I can't believe that they used that silly propaganda term to describe a demonstration or two that had sectarian, right-wing and racist agenda, and where demonstrators hit and killed Syrian workers on their way to "Cedar" square. Notice that the word "deplorable" first appeared to describe the Hizbullah rockets on Israel.
But I understand. These are the precious and expensive people of Israel, who belong to the superior race. At least, we really know where you stand, o nation magazine. And what a disgusting decline of the Nation magazine when it expresses concern, over the plight "of moderate Arab regimes." This only proves my theory--or one of them anyway--that deep down, the Nation magazine is as racist toward Arabs and as hostile to Muslims as the New Republic. And it also proves that the foreign policy of the Nation is motivated solely and exclusively by concern for Israel. So the Nation is now aligned with the House of Saud and Mubarak, because they are friendly with Israel. But I can't accuse the Nation of heartlessness. In one sentence, it expresses concern for rising oil prices. That is called sympathy and compassion.