Why Galloway's doesn't win my RESPECT...
Why Galloway's doesn't win my RESPECT...
from Johann Hari webiste , also featured in progressive ..
What you want – baby, George Galloway’s got it. What you need – you know the Socialist Workers’ Party’s got it. R-E-S-P-E-C-T, find out what it means to me, bring on the MAB. That’s the Muslim Association of Britain to the uninitiated. Yes, this is the rallying tune for – in their words – “the new left-wing force in British politics that will destroy and over-take the bosses’ Labour Party!” Welcome to the world of the RESPECT Coalition which – at this year’s general election – will be yelling about how they are “the real voice of socialism and internationalism” in a constituency near you.
Many of us woill be tempted by such a prospect. So who is the RESPECT Coalition? There are, it is true, some individuals within the organisation who are simply decent, disillusioned left-wingers who felt they could not support a party that invaded Iraq, from the film-maker Ken Loach to the novelist China Melville. But they are a small part of an organisation that – far from doing what it says on the tin, being the left-wing alternative to Labour – is in fact crammed-full of supporters of some of the worst and most reactionary tyrannies on earth.
The most obvious place to start is with Gorgeous George, the RESPECT Coalition’s most famous faces and their candidate to unseat one of parliament’s only black women, Oona King, at the looming general election. We all know the facts about Galloway: that he saluted Saddam Hussein’s “courage, strength and indefatigability” to the dictator’s face, just after Saddam had killed more Muslims in one month than Ariel Sharon and the entire Israeli occupation have in 38 years. He says he would describe himself as “a Stalinist” (Stalin’s death toll: 30 million) if that didn’t “make a rod for my own back,” and he has even described the day the Soviet Union fell as “the worst day of my life.”
Galloway – the brave left-winger – does not believe that democracy is suitable for developing countries. He lauds Fidel Castro – who has ruled Cuba without a single democratic election for 46 years and driven a quarter of the island’s population into exile – as “a great hero” and “not a dictator, not at all.” When the military staged an anti-democratic coup in Pakistan in 1999, Galloway wrote in his weekly column for the Tory newspaper the Mail on Sunday, “In poor third world countries like Pakistan, politics is too important to be left to petty squabbling politicians. Pakistan is always on the brink of breaking apart into its widely disparate components. Only the armed forces can really be counted on to hold such a country together... Democracy is a means, not an end in itself."
In line with this Stalinist belief in iron-fisted military rule, Galloway has even described Saddam’s genocide of the Kurds as “a civil war” that “involved massive violence on both sides” – language that only hardline Ba’athists would ever use. Nor is Galloway left-wing when it comes to domestic policy. He opposes abortion, which he describes as “immoral”, supports capital punishment, and says he could not live on less than £150,000 a year.
Hmmm. So where is the progressive part of the RESPECT Coalition? Perhaps it is their candidate for the recent Leicester South by-election, the former Express journalist Yvonne Ridley. When it comes to the Taliban – the most psychopathically misogynist, homophobic and racist regime in my lifetime – Ridley knew where she stood. She said of the young men who went to join the jihadist dictatorship, “One thing that struck me about these brothers was how principled they were... going on jihad for ideals almost forgotten in a selfish world corrupted by greed and power. The driving force that led them into battle in the mountains and caves of Tora Bora was no different to that which propelled 2800 men AND women from the United States to fight in the Spanish Civil War in 1936.”
These “brothers” would have thrown acid in Ridley’s face if she had dared, as a woman, to show her face in public.
And then there’s the MAB. Dr Azam Tamimi, their chief spokesman, says that Arab women “ask for” domestic violence, and believes thieves should be punished by cutting off their hands – policies that make Norman Tebbit look like a pinko leftist. Their website depicts Sayyid Qutb – one of the intellectual inspirations for the fascist Al Quaeda movement – as a hero. It says that he died smiling “showing his conviction of the beautiful life to come in paradise — a life he definitely and rightfully deserved”. Qutb believed in the execution of gay people and the imprisoning of all women in their own homes. This has produced a strange policy twist for RESPECT: the Coalition opposes the government’s plans for placing a handful of Islamic fundamentalists under house arrest – as I do – but some of their members seem to sympathise with those who advocate the far greater crime of house arrest for all women, all the time.
And it gets worse. As the journalist Anthony Browne has explained, Qutb said the Jews were being punished for their “unprecedented abominations”, but “then the Jews again returned to evildoing and consequently Allah sent against them others of His servants, until the modern period. Then Allah sent Hitler to rule over them.” This the hero for a left-wing alternative to Labour? A man to the right of the BNP?
But wait. There must be somebody left-wing in this “left-wing alternative to Labour”, surely? Well, there’s the Socialist Workers’ Party, who do some valuable work defending asylum seekers and organising campaigns to undermine the BNP. But they have not expressed even a sliver of condemnation for the far-right views of their new-found friends and allies.
Indeed, they slander anybody who points them out as “Islamophobic.’
Nor is the SWP in any sense a democratic organisation. They aim to create a society modelled on Lenin’s Soviet Union – a bloodthirsty dictatorship that slaughtered democrats and liberals. They claim the Soviet Union only went awry with Stalin, and that Lenin provided a “model for the world”. Yet their hero Lenin set up Russia’s secret police and ordered countless executions and massacres. He argued that “the foundation of socialism calls for absolute and strict unity of will... How can strict unity of will be ensured? By thousands subordinating their will to the will of one." As the academic Neil Harding has written, “Leninism would have found its Stalin sooner or later.”
Nor is their hero and guiding light Leon Trotsky a democrat. He advocated “one-man management” of Russia, and damned “left-wing communists” for “turn[ing] democratic principles into a fetish. They put the right of the workers to elect their own representatives above the Party, thus challenging the Party's right to affirm its own dictatorship… We must bear in mind the historical mission of our Party. The Party is forced to maintain its dictatorship, without stopping for these vacillations, nor even the momentary falterings of the working class.”
The RESPECT Coalition might dupe some decent left-wing people, but Labour activists should not be mistaken: this is - to a significant degree - a party of the totalitarian-right.
The only sensible response comes from the Coalition’s diva Aretha Franklin, in the song they have plagiarised: “R-E-S-P-E-C-T/ Find out what it means to me/ Oh, sock it to em, sock it to em, sock it to em.”
Last edited by Ali-Gation; 03-04-2005 at 10:20 PM.
OMG!11!! We haev been infiltorated by teh kufar!11!!!11!!
Although I have my reservations about the authoritarian left, and some very deep reservations about the Saddam-saluting Mr G., I am getting a bit chipper about the way some of the key thinkers and icons of international socialism keep being demonised because they were 'totalitarian', as if the world of the late 19th and early-mid 20th centuries was somehow a planet bristling with freedom, democracy and justice (Is it now?). No one damns the Magna Carta and its declarations of the right to judgement by one's peers as nonsense simply because it was written under a Monarch who believed his right to rule was God-given. The way the Soviet Union was swallowed by the shadow of Stalin's paranoia is one of the darkest political tragedies of modern times, but let's not confuse this realpolitik with what idealistic international socialism originally set out to do in its writings and even in some of its actions.
To begin with, demonising Lenin means ignoring his achievements in helping much of the world rid itself of European colonialism, under which Muslims faired none to well - to put it mildly. Lenin's second conference of the Third International was the first conference to bring together many of the major anti-colonial movements from across the globe. This ensured both Marxism and Leninism continued to inform much anti-colonialial activism, and it is for the same reason that activists who are concerned with the evils of global consumer capitalism and US imperialism continue to visit the writings of Marx, Lenin, Trotsky and indeed Stalin (although many now think the key work of Stalin on this topic was actually ghost written by Lenin).
What these figures had to say remains pertinent, whatever their status based on their subsequent political machinations. Similar arguments can be made about Castro, who may throw pro-US journalists in jail and is not exactly Senior Human Rights, but Cuba's self-sufficiency and grass roots social welfare programmes remain the envy of our so-called 'welfare state' (not much welfare if your kid has got autism, I can assure you), whilst the US government daily throws more and more of its (black and working class) citizens on the rubbish heap, with a human rights record which makes Castro look like a Catholic Saint.
Of course, you may wish to compare Lenin et al to contemporary figures who claim to have impeccable democratic principles, such as Tony Blair and his cronies. Naturally, Blair is an icon of the bourgeois middle classes, whose dominate the cultural and political milieu of this nation and whose interests he serves impeccably. However, these interests are served by supporting trade agreements that create wealth in the UK, whilst delivering much of the world into penury (whatever Tony may tell Bob Geldof). How much was the women paid who made the computer you were using? How much was the coffee farmer paid for the coffee beans in the virtual powdered slaves blood you sprinkle blithely into your coffee cup? How much did you pay for your cotton socks, made with subsidised US cotton whilst African cotton farmers literally starve? Tony won't tell you that and neither will New Labour because, like most corporate cronies, he is working for the 'national interest'.
So while you vote for impeccable democrats at home, just remember you are supporting those who vomit on the Muslim poor outside of Europe.
This kind of half-plagarised New Statesman hogwash amounts to nothing less than an attempt to deliver socialism from socialism. New Labour means new links with unregulated transnational corporate interests, not helping the workers of the world to live like humans instead of pigs. Respect may be a bit of a ropey crew, but damning them with this kind of sweeping anti-left rhetoric hides much of what is good about international socialism from intelligent consideration and white washes what is most rotten and nasty and insipid about New Labour.
Lenin, V. I. (1917) Imperialism: The Highest Stage of Capitalism
Stalin, J. (1936) Marxism and the National and Colonial Question
Young, R. J. C. (2001) Postcolonialism: An Historical Introduction
Last edited by plimfix01; 02-04-2005 at 10:21 PM.
Ali-Gation, I know who you are.
Originally Posted by Ali-Gation
You are Johann Hari the screaming Zionist from the Independent. This is a cut-and-paste job of an article I read in Labour Progressives. It pays to stay loyal to the Labour Party so that we can expose the Zionists within or should I say the enemy within.
look, respect supports gays, if you vote for respect, you are supporting gays, now do the math.
Name me a party who doesn't support gays.
Anyway, its a "tactical vote" - you vote for the party that will cause the leading parties to lose support and become less effective, thereby allowing us to be more inflentual - and we then can lobby for anti-homosexual policies.
Salam, When you Vote for a party remember your VOTE shows you completly surpport them, and you agree with their policies and you agree with them so if they support gays then you giveing you vote would mean you support gays ful Stop
Originally Posted by ayqazi
No you don't. If enough Muslims vote for a party, they can make the party change its policies towards homos. The party represents the people (in theory). Remember, necessity dictates exception.
The only other exception to voting is violence, and quite frankly while the ability to vote is available, it takes precedence over violence, even though we will be voting for those who disobey Allah subhahahuwa-tallah.
I wouldn't think of it like this, but if it makes you feel any better, think of it as a stratagem of war - Allah Almighty tells us in the Qur'an to use every stratagem of war to defeat the infidels (Surah At-Tawbah verse 5).
I agree with ayqazi, you are not going to find a mainstream party that is totally compatible with Islam. We have to find the most compatible party with our values. The whole point of voting and joing parties is to make your views known and direct future policies to your liking.
" When you Vote for a party remember your VOTE shows you completly surpport them, and you agree with their policies"
This is not necessarily true, voting for a particular party doesn't mean you completely agree with every single policy, you just vote for a party who will represent you best.
you really think respect party is gonna make homosexuality illeagal? what u been smokin?
Originally Posted by ayqazi
you vote for any party (they all support gays) you are agreeing with homosexuality, standard!
Check this out
Abdul Mojid, you are spot on. Not only do Respect support Gays, they actively campaign for them. Their removal of this material from their campaign literature is just a cynical ploy to get the Muslim vote.
What other mainstream parties go to Gay Pride marches??
That I didn't know. You see, if we present our information nicely, we can change other people's opinions, like you have changed mine.
I'm still gonna vote - just for some non-mainstream party that will damage the mainstream ones.
All of the political parties in the UK have something in them which is not compatible with Islam. However, we will never get anywhere in convincing this country to stop supporting Israel unless we start voting in large numbers. Only then, will the political parties fully realise the power we have in voting them in/out of government.
If we use the politrical potential that we have, inshallah all the main political parties will begin clamouring for our vote. And the only way they will get our vote is by satisfying our wants and needs by offering to change or create new policies that will be advantageous to Muslims.
nishath_786, ... are you saying that the labour party does not support gay rights? Not only do they support gay rights but they also have gay mp's ...
May want to take a look at http://www.sunion.warwick.ac.uk/labo...icles_Gay1.htm
can we not start an islamic party? then all the muslims can vote for the shariah too be implemented in this country, then no-one would commit haraam.
Respect - You don't see Labour at Gay Pride marches though do you?? (Not that I'd know!! ) Respect ACTIVELY support Gay Pride and this is clear to see. Labour do indeed have Gay MPs, but they've stopped short of promoting Gay Partnerships/Pension rights etc which is what Respect want. In my area, Respect are campaigning openly outside Masjids. Are they telling everyone their aims?? Don't think so. When my party asked me to do this, I refused. There's a time and a place, and it ain't outside a masjid.
And also, Respect, what about Respect NOT supporting Islamic state schools? Another thing they don't boast about...
Also, Labour do not solely rely on Muslims to vote for them, unlike Respect.
Edit - Please see how Galloway voted when it came to Gays being allowed to adopt children.... Astagh-fir-Ullah
Last edited by nishath_786; 05-04-2005 at 10:07 AM.
Originally Posted by ayqazi
Their last update was in November 2004. They have suspended all political activities, citing reasons including "the British Muslim community remained too divided to present a united political challenge to the existing political establishment". Typical Muslims, unfortunately.
Originally Posted by sunilight
It'd be interesting if someone contacted them (*knudge* *knudge* *wink* *wink*) to ask if they intend to stand in the elections again, for example in Blackburn.
Also, the more I hear about RESPECT, the less I like. Keep it coming. Also, perhaps we should collect all these allegations against RESPECT and present them to the Muslim Association of Britain - they were the ones who endorsed RESPECT in the first place. If nobody else will, I certainly will.
(p.s. Its interesting that some people are calling MAB deviants, while the disbelievers are calling MAB extremists.)
Maybe we should vote BNP, they don't support gays. :-)
Last edited by ayqazi; 05-04-2005 at 11:48 AM.