[Marxism] James Petras: The Tyranny Of Israel Over America

John Enyang x03002f at math.nagoya-u.ac.jp
Fri Mar 31 19:32:56 MST 2006

MJ Alam writes:
> The obvious American path, if we started carte blanche, would
> be to actually get 300 of the 306 million people in an oil-rich region
> on your side as much as possible; to get the side that actually has the
> oil to tolerate you - you know, the dozens of countries versus...just
> the one without any oil. Otherwise,  you end up with some nasty stuff:

It would be interesting to know exactly how, outside of fairy tales, the
US or the bloc it leads could reconcile itself with the mass of people in
the Arab countries plus Iran. Fundamental interests of the US-EU-Japan
triad dictated that the region's oil be available for exploitation and
that the profits or rents of this oil be recycled into finanancial
markets, or otherwise wasted, rather than used for endogenous development.
This is a fundamental contradiction between the interests of the vast
majority of the people of the region and those of the imperial powers that
cannot simply be wished away.

By analogy, this is why the US cannot tolerate the Bolivarian revolution.
> This is really ABC stuff. There is no "objective, material" reason for
> the US to support Israel. There are superstructural reasons, residue
> from what was once buttressed by objective material conditions (Cold
> War), a residue that has hardened, been reinforced, and locked into
> place so as to become policy.

To the extent the cold war was a struggle to ensure that the periphery did
not pursue an independent economic or political course, the cold war
continues, not as a policy, but as a structural necessity. Indeed it will
continue into the future -- with different ideological justifications
required under new circumstances.
Of course if we accept liberal definitions of the cold war, then sure, US
hostility to the third world and its identification with reaction in these
regions, was a response to Soviet meddling. With the end of the soviet
union, the old policies, which mysteriously continue, are an abberation to
be explained, in this instance, by the "Israel Lobby".


> The Brits didn't wake up one morning and say, "hey you know what would
> be a kick-ass idea? A Jewish state in the middle of the Muslim world!"
> Rather, it was Zionists in the mold of Herzl and Weizmann who actively
> lobbied the British government to create  a state.
On the contrary, the idea of a western garrison in the region was first
mooted in the British press around 1850, without any input from "Zionists"
as the latter did not exist at the time. This matter is discussed in Samir
Amin's book "Empire of Chaos", and I don't have my copy available so am
working from memory, but as I recall he attributed this to the lesson
drawn by the imperialist powers from their conflict with and defeat of
Mohammed Ali's regime that attempted to modernise Egypt (an attempt that
prefigured the Meiji restoration).

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