Sunday, October 16, 2011

How to Stop a Movement in the US - Part 2

An ugly old tradition is back: Exploiting anti-Semitism to break the backs of popular movements that threaten the power of the wealthiest one per cent of our population. It is being used to undermine the Occupy Wall Street movement, which has conservatives in a state of near panic.


Perhaps its most famous use was by the viciously anti-Semitic Czar Nicholas, whose supporters concocted the Protocols of the Elders of Zion at the start of the 20th century to prevent Russians from joining socialist movements and other reform efforts that were fighting to get the czar to cede some power to an elected parliament.

The Protocols were a forged document purporting to show that a cabal of Jews met regularly to solidify their supposed control of the entire world. According to the Protocols, Jews were behind socialist and liberal movements but also ran the banks and Wall Street (A modern version of this ridiculous theme was a staple on Glenn Beck's television programme that ran on Fox News until being cancelled this summer).

The Protocols have had a long life, used by the czar, the Nazis, and even today by extremist and fringe Muslim groups opposed to the existence of Israel.

But they were primarily used not so much against the Jews as against reform and revolution. Linking a progressive movement to the Jews would destroy progressive movements and preserve the power of those in control.


One of the first conservatives [...] to use this tactic was the usually quite proper Ivy League conservative, New York Times columnist David Brooks. In an October 10 column dismissing the Wall Street protests as "trivial sideshows", Brooks wrote:

"Take the Occupy Wall Street movement. This uprising was sparked by the magazine Adbusters, previously best known for the 2004 essay, 'Why Won't Anyone Say They Are Jewish?' - an investigative report that identified some of the most influential Jews in America and their nefarious grip on policy."


And then yesterday the Emergency Committee For Israel, a far-right Republican group run by Bill Kristol, issued a video flat-out accusing Occupy Wall Street of anti-Semitism.


The Emergency Committee's evidence is presented in [a] video, which shows three anti-Semites and two anti-Semitic signs among the protesters. That's it, out of a crowd of thousands. (Far be it from me to guess at the number of anti-Semites who might be at a Tea Party event, but they don't define that movement either. Mass movements attract all kinds of people, some invariably unsavoury.)

  MJ Rosenberg

Mass movements not only attract all kinds, they are easily infiltrated by specific kinds. I think the original protesters should be feeling pretty good about now, despite the real struggle that is ahead, precisely because they’ve made it so long without any real incidents to blemish their cause and character, and because they’ve spawned a global movement. That’s a pretty big accomplishment.

And here’s a hat tip to Columbia…

For more than a week, anyone passing by Columbia’s City Hall might have noticed demonstrators, ranging from a single person to more than 50 people, chanting and waving signs.

The largest group came last night to speak out on a specific local issue, but a minority of those participating have had a presence there night and day for eight full days. Those demonstrators are the members of a group known as Occupy Como.

  Columbia Tribune

And Occupy Galveston.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments are moderated. There may be some delay before your comment is published. It all depends on how much time M has in the day. But please comment!