The equation of zionism with world domination shares a similar incoherence with the notion of the Jewish world conspiracy. It is unclear whether zionism is already supposed to have international power or whether it is still trying to achieve it via the Israeli state. The section that follows contains many examples.
A glaring example occurred in the paper of the Workers Revolutionary Party (Newsline, 8.12.79). This managed to combine the long-standing belief in international Jewish financial power with modern political zionism. The paper quoted with approval a member of the National Union of Mineworkers who said: "It was Britain who sold the Palestinian people out to Zionist money power". The reference here is presumably to the period before 1948 when Britain was the Mandate authority ruling Palestine. One would have thought that a supposedly Marxist journal would at least have commented that Britain "sold out" the Palestinians because of Britain's imperialist interests. However, the quotation continues without comment as though it were from Der Stürmer (propaganda newspaper of the Nazi party in Germany), "Many promises were made to the Palestinians but none were delivered for fear of upsetting the Jewish '£' sign". In fact, the sentiments behind this are remarkably similar to the "explanation" given by the National Front as to why the United States government allowed Israel to invade the Lebanon—"because America's economy, mass media and political system is totally dominated by the Zionist-Jewish Money Power" (National Front News, August 1982).
Newsline has in fact managed to reproduce the notion of the media as under zionist influence—a typical instance of the conspiracy theory. In March 1983, the B.B.C. "Money Programme" purported to show that the W.R.P. was financed by the Libyan regime. One response to this by Newsline was an editorial which claimed that the programme was "zionist sponsored" (9.4.83). The same editorial then pointed out that Stuart Young had recently been appointed chairman of the B.B.C. Young was described as being a director of the Jewish Chronicle. No explanation was given of the politics of the Jewish Chronicle to the readers of Newsline—most of whom had probably never before heard of the newspaper. The implication was that the B.B.C. was under the influence of, or controlled by, zionists. Newsline also gave the irrelevant information that Young was a director of British Caledonian Airways. It is difficult to draw from this any other conclusion than that not only is the media zionist controlled but that zionism itself, a movement of the Jewish masses, was in fact created by Jewish capitalists. The National Front has also emphasised that the B.B.C. is chaired by a "leading zionist" (Nationalism Today, number 17). Fortunately for the credibility of communism this outburst from the W.R.P. was condemned by at least one other organisation as coming straight out of the Protocols of Zion (Socialist Organiser, 18.11.82).
The Socialist Workers Party has also articulated its own variant of the conspiracy theory—making the fantastic allegation about zionism that:
"It's essence is that a 'chosen people', the Jews, are superior to everyone else and should trample on the rights of other peoples" (20.10.73).
This is incredible. A Marxist approach to the 'essence' of zionism would look at its social roots—which manifestly lay in the reaction of the Jewish masses to the pogroms of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and to Nazism. It seems that Socialist Worker imagines that zionism emanates from a mysterious plot in which Jews see themselves as the "chosen people"—a biblical reference which is seemingly equivalent to modern 'master race' theories and in which Jews believe themselves 'superior to everyone else'. The S.W.P. has substituted, at least on this occasion, a materialist analysis of zionism for an idealistic one—and one that is completely anti-semitic.
The logic of these politics within the S.W.P. was shown several years later (31.5.80) when it printed a letter from a certain Anthony Jones. Its ostensible purpose was to argue that the T.V. film "Death of a Princess" (which portrayed some of the more reactionary aspects of life in Saudi Arabia) somehow gave support to zionism. In reality the letter was grossly anti-semitic and was full of innuendos about Jewish control of the media. To quote:
"Such is zionist influence in Britain-particularly in the media ('Lord' Lew Grade, 'Lord' Bernstein) -that this film was bound to be shown and therefore used to stir up anti-Arab feeling".
Anthony Jones was, in fact, one of the organisers of the National Front in Tameside. Even if the S.W.P. did not know this then the nature of the letter should have alerted them. However, Socialist Worker was seen to be quite unable to distinguish anti-zionism from blatant anti-semitism.
The attempt to invoke biblical images of the 'chosen people' to explain zionism as the latest example of Jewish power-seeking, is in fact found in diverse political sources. The unifying theme is that the Judaic religion is viewed as both the basis of zionism and as a faith which preaches genocide and the enslavement of gentiles.
Spearhead (December 1982) claimed that zionism was based on the belief by Jews that they were "God's chosen people". The Stalinist soviet academic Kichko has written in his book Judaism and Zionism that:
"Judaism teaches that Jews should force the subjugated people in the invaded lands to work for them as a people of priests".
The Stalinist Vladimir Begun similarly wrote in his Creeping Counter Revolution that:
"Zionist gangsterism ... has its ideological roots in the scrolls of the Torah and the precepts of the Talmud" ('Anti-zionism in the USSR' in The Left Against Zion, ed. Wistrich, in which both the above books are quoted).
Even a revolutionary socialist magazine on the Middle East claims that the politics of zionism come from the Talmud. (Israel Shahak, 'The Jewish Religion and its Attitude to Non-Jews', Khamsin, issue 8, 1983). Actually, this particular article has a certain uniqueness amongst Left conspiracy theories, in that its author makes the claim, remarkable in a revolutionary socialist journal that:
"An examination of radical, socialist and communist parties can provide many examples of disguised Jewish chauvinists and racists who joined these parties merely for reasons of 'Jewish interest' and are, in this region, in favour of 'anti-gentile' legislation".
In other words, just as the Right claim that Jews enter communist groups in order to subvert capitalism so now a member of the Left claims that they enter such groups in order to subvert communism!
In 1982, Labour Herald (produced by several people prominent on the left of the Labour Party) published a book review and letter by H.C. Mullin (March 19th and May 28th respectively). In his letter, Mullin said:
"I assert that the Zionists use the lie that the Western democratic forces made no attempt to rescue Europe's Jews from the Nazi terror to instil guilt in the members of Western society. The reason being, of course, that guilty persons are easily manipulated in the services of zionism".
In accomplishing this manipulation Zionists are allegedly able to control "the right wing propaganda organs"—in other words, the media. This really is 'revisionist' history of a major order.
Far from being a lie that the "democratic" forces made no attempt to rescue Europe's Jews, it is a patently obvious fact. Indeed for six years after the Nazis came to power, the Allies remained silent, attempting a policy of appeasement and an alliance with Nazism against the Soviet Union. At the same time, all the major imperialist countries imposed rigid immigration controls against Jewish refugees which continued to exist throughout the war, both in this country and in the U.S.A. For instance in 1942, the Vichy regime in France agreed to hand over 19,000 Jews to the Germans for slave labour and then extermination in Poland. Appeals were made to the British Foreign Office to take these Jews into the U.K., to which one official replied:
"We cannot turn our country into a sponge for Europe".
Those Jews who did manage to get here before the war were put into internment camps as 'enemy aliens'. Many were deported to Canada or Australia—a ship-load of deported Jews was sunk when the Arandora Star was torpedoed in July 1940. For many years even the exitence of the concentration camps was denied or minimised on the grounds that (quoting another Foreign Office official):
"As a general rule, the Jews are inclined to magnify their persecution".
Throughout the war Jewish organisations made repeated requests to the Allies to bomb the gas chambers and incinerators at Auschwitz. They were told that such pin-point bombing was impossible. However, in September 1944 the U.S. airforce was able to bomb the I.G. Farben industrial complex which was immediately adjacent to Auschwitz. All these facts are well known to the survivors and have been documented in such books as Britain and the Jews of Europe by Bernard Wasserstein (from which the above quotations have been taken).
Mullin's writings mirror the attempt by Nazi 'revisionist' historians to deny the murder of six million Jews. This is part of a similar attempt to portray Jews as manipulators of historical truth. As has been said in previous chapters, the Left has accused Zionists of exploiting "the natural hatred of the labour movement for anti-semitism". It is also a Nazi ploy, as seen in a fascist magazine Holocaust News, to accuse Jews of 'exploiting' and exaggerating the holocaust. The opening line of its first editorial stated:
"The Zionists used the 'Holocaust' myth to create a smoke screen of international public sympathy".
As a socialist paper, Labour Herald's printing of Mullin's letter without comment, must be seen as complicity in the perpetration of anti-semitic myths. Furthermore, the real lie peddled by the Western bourgeoisie—namely that the last war was somehow a war against 'fascism and anti-semitism—remains unchallenged. The reality was that it was a war between two rival imperialisms, British and German—a rivalry that was perceived as too great to permit a joint alliance against the U.S.S.R. The fascistic and anti-semitic nature of the Nazi regime was absolutely irrelevant to Britain and the U.S.A., as neither declared war until their imperialist interests were threatened.
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