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On Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir's Oration

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by IceBlaZe, Oct 19, 2003.

  1. Leha

    Leha ooseepoosee

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    Do you think Israel isn't doing what it is told WITHOUT oil ?
    Oil IS economic ties , isn't half of world economic based on oil ?
    Never mind .
    All I wanted to say , Israel will never be as "good" friend of ,say , France or Russia as some arab countries , and it is obvious .
     
  2. Dr. Dr. Doktor

    Dr. Dr. Doktor Emperor

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    So are you saying that Europe is some sort of global empire, which have put in every conclusion on some meeting that mr. so and so have made a comment which do not behove our fine sensibilities? Sure if people want us to be that empire I am all for it. I doubt if the Malaysian, a former colony of the British, or any other country, outside the area of Europe, would find that particularily amusing.
     
  3. Dr. Dr. Doktor

    Dr. Dr. Doktor Emperor

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    Sorry to disillusion you, but I think Israel has a rather independent policy, both domestically and with foreign nations. You are not saying that Israel is some sort of colony are you?

    And oh yes. Europe has tremendiously good ties with the Arab nations. We send our young people there to work in kibutz (sp?), we import food and technology from them, we continously have heated arguments with arabs about their policies over the internet and on and on.

    You know that Israel has closer ties with Europe than any Arab nation has.
     
  4. Nad

    Nad Known Troublemaker

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    What the hell are you on about? What's it got to do with Arafat or terrorism? It's a question about condemning a speech. I'll make it very simple for you:

    Did Chirac condemn the speech? Yes.

    Did he welcome it? No.

    Either acknowledge the truth of the above or accept that you are a lying, two-faced, hypocritical sod (how's that for a triple negative?)
     
  5. Akbar

    Akbar evil fundamentalist

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    Strange, but I don't exactly remember anyone raising a hissy fit when the EU (or anyone else for that matter) failed to criticise Berlusconi when he made comments regarding the 'backwardness' and 'lack of civilization' of muslim culture or something to that effect. But then it was Berlusconi and everyone would probably be surprised if he didn't offend anyone once in while.
     
  6. Richard III

    Richard III Duke of Gloucester

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    Fair comment, Akbar.

    Sean, I've read the speech in its entirety, and I stand by my opinion. He was clearly arguing that Jews control western foreign policy as per the conspiracy theory du jour. Nice speech otherwise, but so what?

    As for Chirac, gimme a couple of hours to check into something...
     
  7. Yago

    Yago came undone

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    I think the whole jew-conspiracy thing is the same as the all French are anit-semites thing.

    Crap.
     
  8. Pongui

    Pongui Deity

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    Directly put. I understand you perfectly.

    What mars the Malaysian PM's opening address is the statement that Jews had or have some devious control of world events. This reminds us of the evil Nazi scheme whereby assets of innocent Jews and Jewish organisations were seized on the grounds that they formed a network of malicious intent and grave threat. That's The conspiracy theory, I think. We all agree that idea disproves itself by motive alone.

    I don't know that he's saying that. I wouldn't be surprised if he thinks that, but the words of the opening address, to me, suggest another line of thought. Mahathir Mohammed is urging Muslims, as a group he feels persecuted by the West, to do something. That "something" could be described as to "think", to "plan", to "plot", to "conspire", in response to adversary. He presents a long-term goal for Islamic governments, acting in coordination, to play on the level with the big powers. And this great achievement would see Muslims controlling the world by proxy, having others fight and die for their cause, as big powers do. I guess he's thinking of how the world fought the Nazis on behalf of the Jews. He must be thinking too of how the West supports and plans the welfare of Israel. He wants Islam to enjoy such power, and he says Muslims should conspire, not simply hate and hit back, to earn it.

    A loaded word, "conspire". It's a taboo word that ought to be put in its proper place, and used without spasm. The whole ridiculous "conspiracy theory" taboo - has gotten to the point where just saying "Jews think" or "the government planned" can get one called an anti-Semite or a tinfoil-hatman.
     
  9. Richard III

    Richard III Duke of Gloucester

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    I will take an honest crack at thinking that one over overnight, but I have a hard time instinctively with the idea that a western educated Prime Minister who's been around for a majority of the last century could possibly construct such sentences without having that meaning. Consider: he's talking about others fighting and dying for Jews, e.g. memories of the satirical line coming from the Illinois nazi in the Blues Brothers about how "the Jew is using the Black as muscle." I don't think it's a WWII reference, if I recall, it was present tense. Considering how hard it is to find examples of others doing fighting and dying for Jews these days, isn't that in and of itself a sign that race is polluting his worldview?

    And I can't help but think that a Muslim picking the "jewish success" to emulate in reference to the Israeli dispute can't help but be a loaded choice.

    But I'll think about it.

    R.III

    And PS the "nice speech otherwise" part wasn't sarcasm; it actually happens to hold nicely to my worldview of what Islam needs to do to cut it in the 21st Century. But that's not the issue...
     
  10. Pontiuth Pilate

    Pontiuth Pilate Republican Jesus!

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    This thread is a textbook case of how "You dirty antisemite" has become the standard response to any and every criticism of Israeli policy in the Mideast. And before you all pile on me, I'm Jewish, so back off.

    I took a few days off from this thread and came back with a clean slate and read the speech as Sean linked to it. And I just want to say that my mind has been changed. Supposedly his speech is peppered with antisemitic, as sparingly as I want to use that word, comments. But since when do I see Pat Buchanan mincing his words about Islam? Just like the televangelist, the Malaysian PM is pitching his speech to an audience that he knows well, and he's playing on their understandable fear and resentment. No, that is nothing new, and yes, that is exactly what Hitler did. Once more, lay off and let me finish.

    It is 100% obvious to ANYONE WHO ACTUALLY BOTHERS TO READ THE SPEECH that his anti-Israeli and anti-Western rhetoric stops at calling them "enemies", "adversaries", etc. I'd like to see one place in this speech where he refers to the Jewish people as an inferior backwards race that needs to be wiped out. If I understand his position correctly, what makes Israel an enemy is their political and economic standing in the region, not their religion. Remember, Islam was supposedly a cosmopolitan, tradition-absorbing religion [which is more than can be said for tribalistic Judaism]. In fact the Malaysian PM wants Islam to EMULATE the "Jewish success". He wants Islam to do a full 180 and modernize and unify and take control of its massive resources, so that it can have "victory" over the adversary instead of futile strategic suicide. He wants that elusive "Arab unity", in fact he's almost a sort of Islamic Tecumseh. I don't want to make any value judgements - and let's remember that Tecumseh called the white man "evil" and wanted to drive him off the continent. People, there is a direct analogy here.

    I think the two small places in this speech where he mentions Judaism have been taken out of context. In the first instance he says that Jews have got others to fight for them by proxy. That's true. The United States funds a large portion of the Israeli military budget. It does more: it lends them military machinery and personnel. It does more: it uses its diplomatic and economic weight to crush dissent against Israel on the world stage. It does more: its foreign policy in the Mideast is virtually centered around protecting Israel by destabilizing neighbors or winning them over as vassal-allies like Turkey and Saudi Arabia. Make no mistake, if the USA withdrew its direct and indirect support of Israel, pretty soon Israel would not exist. So this statement is entirely justified. The Israelis have used the influence they gained by becoming a very modernized group [including their emphasis on science, politics, and learning] to get the bigger and more powerful nations of the playground on their side to protect them. That's a positive thing. This man is saying that he believes that Arabs can do the same thing - and that they should.

    Secondly he talks about how Jews as a social group [if it's racist to talk about Jews as a social group, why isn't it to talk about Arabs as a social group, or the Irish? It seems to me that like any social group, they have a common interest...] "invented" human rights, democracy, etc, to "protect" them and "get others to treat them equally". Again, that's a positive thing. He counts that as a Jewish achievement. They couldn't stop the terrorising of their people with force. Just like what he thinks is happening to the Arabs today, the Jews were scattered physically and ideologically, they were disunited, they were weak and relatively powerless. So they tried as hard as they could to shift the ideology of the society towards a new method that would look down on the oppression of any social group - ie democracy. And that led to a longterm benefit to the Jews. Claims that he is saying there was a millenia-old Jewish conspiracy is just the typical case of taking someone's position to easily defeated extremes [straw-manning]. What he's saying is that the Jews attempted to gain respect [not pity] for their struggle and that they attempted to win over people to protect them. They were working from inside the system, not futile banging-heads-on-walls tactics, which is what he says suicide bombing is because it merely invites more "retaliation" from Israelis and the West. In fact later in the same speech he says that Arabs must "win the hearts and minds" of the world and "show consideration to the enemy" since there are those in the West who do not approve of what's going on. He's proposing that the Arabs reform their PR image and try to gain large-scale respect for their "struggle". Again, he's saying that the Arabs should EMULATE the "Jewish success".

    In fact I see a few Jews on this thread sinking BELOW the level of what the Malaysian PM is asking. Appeals to pity, like the constant bringing up of the Holocaust, as if that should excuse anything and everything that the state of Israel does to the Mideast. [And don't start, I lost family members in the Holocaust]. So it looks as if, if the current ideological trends continue, the Arabs and the Muslims will win. I'm not sure if I want that to happen!

    In short: I see anti-Israeli tendencies in this speech, but no virulent antisemitism. In fact, if I were a Muslim, I would probably be inclined to agree 100% with what this relatively moderate Islamic leader is saying.

    PS: the above post makes ZERO judgements about the actual objective VALUE of the course the Malaysian PM is endorsing. Please flame and ad hominem to my PM box where I can dump you directly into the trash.
     
  11. Mopheo

    Mopheo Warlord

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    :worship: Excellent Post :worship:

    The only thing I must point out is that you must take into account that this prime minister is a smart man, and understands the press. He knew that his speech would be taken out of context, and that muslim newspapers and leaders would latch onto his "conclusions," which can also be interpreted as endorsing the conspiracy theory. He should be condemned for negligence in making comments on an issue where it is so dangerous to be politically incorrect.

    I also must be disagree with you about the actions of Israli posters, I think that most the remarks that you are alluding to are direct responses to curt siblings (and like minded posters) twisted attacks. I don't think either gman or Iceblaze were looking for Holacaust pity, and they are also not anti French, they just don't like the policies of the person representing France.
     
  12. Pontiuth Pilate

    Pontiuth Pilate Republican Jesus!

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    Well yeah, I think the previous 7 or 8 pages of this thread are a direct result of people responding right away without bothering to check their facts [about the "condemnation"] or bothering to find out anything [reading the actual speech in context]. I suppose I was as guilty of that as anyone ;)
     
  13. GerrardCapashen

    GerrardCapashen Benalish Master-at-Arms

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    Umm, this alone makes his speech worthy of comdemnation. The Malaysian PM is so illustrious that his peers are Pat Buchanan and Hitler? Sad, sad, sad.

    Referring to anyone as an adversary isn't going to win him PR points, and it does imply that struggle with Israel is a desired outcome for him. Implying that there has to be a winner and a loser, and the objective of the Arab world is to 'win' and for the Israelis to 'lose', is definitely something that should IMMEDIATELY send red flags up.

    This speech really isn't helping the image of the Arab world in regards to averting a major culture clash. Basically he is saying two things:

    -Israel and the Jews rule the world through their insidious influence
    -The Arab world should use more sophisticated methods than terrorism and war to displace the Jews as the primary world power

    Both things are not the kind of things you want to hear from the Prime Minister of a country, even if he is retiring next month and was just saying this to appease the Muslim fundamentalists in his country.
     
  14. Pontiuth Pilate

    Pontiuth Pilate Republican Jesus!

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    You obviously didn't read the speech since you still talk about "Israel and the Jews rule the world through their insidious influence". We really don't need another spamfest like Curt and G-Man almost buried the actual topic under with their flaming. Become informed, then debate.

    Referring to anyone as an adversary isn't going to win him PR points, and it does imply that struggle with Israel is a desired outcome for him. Implying that there has to be a winner and a loser, and the objective of the Arab world is to 'win' and for the Israelis to 'lose', is definitely something that should IMMEDIATELY send red flags up.

    I guess you didn't even read my post then. I made NO value judgements. I'm merely trying to clear up what he actually meant, which is pretty hard when the moment a Muslim leader opens his mouth and speaks about Israel he is immediately tarred with the brush of antisemitism.

    Hello, Gerard? What exactly is the alternative for the Arabs? "Peace"? "Me and Big Father in Washington want big heap peace, but big heap peace no happen less you and big heap Indians go big heap west and give white man your land".

    That's not a false analogy. They are in exactly the same position as the Indians. They are economically and politically dominated by an outside force that isn't too scrupulous about exploiting them.

    The point he made, that if an Arab country was invaded they could whine and moan on the world stage but "not accomplish anything substantial" [again, read the speech] is a point that not one sane poster on this board will debate... so for the Arabs, at this point, "peace" means defeat because there is still the threat of invasion at any time. So their hands are tied and their countries will continue to be exploited by the west.

    For the last frickin time, I'm not saying that's what I think. I'm saying that's what THEY think. Got it?
     
  15. Pontiuth Pilate

    Pontiuth Pilate Republican Jesus!

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    By the by: I am reporting this whole thread, because we all know that the Malaysian Prime Minister's oration was not "welcomed" by Chirac, and nobody has so far been able to prove it was racist.

    :rolleyes: of course, why should that matter when you have an agenda to push...

    Title changed, to something less baity... - XIII
     
  16. GerrardCapashen

    GerrardCapashen Benalish Master-at-Arms

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    I did read the speech, and that is EXACTLY what he was saying. "With these, [the Jews] have now gained control of the most powerful countries and they, this tiny community, have become a world power." How much clearer do you want it?

    I know you made no value judgement; I did. I stand by my statements that this speech is worthy of condemnation for anti-Semitism. Actually, when reasonable Arabs speak about Israel, they are not accused of being anti-Semitic because the things they say are not anti-Semitic, as this speech obviously was.

    The alternative IS peace. (What do you think it is, a no-holds-barred war?) The Arab countries can all denounce terrorism, and Palestine can exist as a soverign country alongside Israel. (Granted this is a pipe dream at the moment, but it is the alternative, if extremely unlikely.) By the way, the "outside force" that you speak of as exploiting them is actually the Arab despots and clerics who rule their countries. The plight of the common Arab person can be blamed on these Muslims, not on the evil Western corporations.

    Why do you think that you have to translate for them? What Arab countries are in danger of non-Arabic invasions? Can you name even one? Iran is not in danger of being invaded as long as they can assure the IAEA that they are not using their nuclear reactors for weapons as is DEMANDED by the Non-Proliferation treaty. Iraq has already been invaded, and, depending on how stubborn the Bush administration is, will probably be back in Iraqi hands in less than three years. If you are going to say that it will then be controlled by U.S. puppets, you can blame the puppets. After all, they will be Iraqi, and thus can't be called outside opressing forces.
     
  17. Dr. Dr. Doktor

    Dr. Dr. Doktor Emperor

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    I read the Speech. Agree that there is nothing remotely racist about it. He has a very conservative and religious outlook on the world, and some of the things he says will undoubtedly make some Jews, but also some Europeans (and that includes those in America I guess) uncomfortable.

    What I percieve is that he speaks the language people like Sharon, Bush, Blair and Berlusconi, and those citizens who agree with them, can understand. The oration is clearly not only aimed at Muslims, but also at a Western audience.

    What I don't like about the speach is that it, despite the many references to the Koran, is so mired in the narrative which conservative scholars like for example Bernhard Lewis and Samuel Huntingon is trying to convince us of. The whole idea of a clash between a Western and a Muslim civilization. This is simply too easy. The level of oppression brought by the West on the East historically is relatively minor to the level of oppresion brought about the people in control upon the controlled within each cultural sphere respectively. The means to achieve and obtain the 'social contract' that allowed for such oppression have exactly been the ability to speak to the people's sense (cleverly manipulated through education and media) of national and religious belonging. When people are at war, they are willing to give up freedom and equality, because they believe that it will help secure the 'greater good' of society. Naturally war then becomes a way in which those who 'have' will fool those who 'have not', into accepting any injustice. Thus the whole issue of war rests on a questionable basis.

    So if the conservatives of the world wish to drag the world into another full blown World War, I would have to disagree with that.
     
  18. bigfatron

    bigfatron Emperor

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  19. Richard III

    Richard III Duke of Gloucester

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    Pontius, to give Sean fair credit, I did think this through overnight. And my reply to you, and him:

    1. Say what you want to others, I'm quite sure this is not a "knee-jerk reaction to criticism from Israel" by me, since I'm among the first to point the finger. This isn't about Israeli policy, though, it's about Jews. And there is a difference. His words, not mine.

    2. Be clear - he refers to Jews. He does not refer to Isreal having an alliance with the United States. I'm sorry, it's not mincing words: the clear implication IS one of conspiracy, using the same sort of language that the protocols of the elders of zion and all that kaka would use. The United States has made a value choice in supporting Israel. I don't agree with the value choice, but to portray it as "Pro-Jew" or "Americans dying for Jews" (where?) or "Jew-controlled" is ridiculous. American policy in the Middle East has always been explicitly driven by classical American realpolitik concerns that have nothing to do with race. Look no further than Nixon, a bit of an anti-semite by any definition, who supported Israel more than anyone has since, at the moment when Israel most needed it. To portray that as "race-driven" is sickening.

    Nixon's policy tilt - like every other President's - was driven by the harsh reality that the people Mahathir was speaking to all rule feudal, medieval or dictatorial regimes that have made their contempt for the US clear since before Israel was formed, where Israel was then and is now a democracy of sorts that is willing to talk to the west. Since the US has offered Egypt, Arabia, Pakistan and Kuwait strong military support in the last 15 years or so, it's also clear that their policy, if race-driven, would be somewhat contradictory. :D

    2. No, his speech is not peppered with anti-semetic remarks. So what?

    3. If Pat Buchanan spewed some crap about Muslims, he'd take the same hit. Just look at how full CFC is right now with threads about anti-muslim bigotry? Just as we have to be careful not to allow criticism of Israel to be seen as anti-semetism, so too do we have to be careful not to forgive anti-semetism just because there are other bigotries around the corner.

    4. It's crystal clear that the Jews are seen as adversaries in the speech. No, he does not say they are inferior; anti-semetism preaches that Jews are clever and insidious monsters, not animals.

    5. I can't beleive I even have to argue this point, but, re: your comments and others about how US support for Israel de facto verifies the claim that "Jews rule the world by proxy," to suggest that a racial group consciously controls the United States. For one thing, this is simply untrue, and if it were, Sa'udi Arabia would never have received the weapons it did, despite Israeli protests? If it is true, then why does Israel have to spy on the US? And last, and most importantly, any fool following US politics today - on which the Malay PM would surely be well briefed - knows full well that the most powerful lobby in support of Israel in the halls of Washington right now is not made up of robots of a certain race who all think alike, but instead consists of a very large block of Christian fundamentalists. Some rule. Some proxy.

    R.III
     
  20. IceBlaZe

    IceBlaZe Atheist Proselytizer

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    I do think anti-semitism is being overused, but it certainly is a reason to some of the ciriticsm over Israel.
    However, we are not concerned, since the speec wasn't about Israel. It was about JEWS.

    Who cares if you are Jewish?
    It doesn't mean you can't be anti-Semitic. One of the biggest Israel haters out there is Jewish and I'm fairly sure his comments are driven from an inferiority complex that result in anti-Semitism.
    He is 2nd Generation to holocaust survivors and he thinks Israel is a Jewish incarnation of a fourth Reich which is worse than the former. Most of today's psychoanalysists agree that everything has to do with everything and that concious criticism can be influenced by unconcious inferiority complexes.
    Take, for example, the Jewish Moroccans, Iraqis et al. Obviously, they are the closest a Jew is to an Arab. They look exactly the same as Arabs and their culture is not much different, without the "Jewish" part. Along with that, they generally are the biggest (and I am, unfortunately, generalising here) racists and Arab-haters in Israel. The most accepted theory here is that it is an inferiority complex.

    You shouldn't spare that word when needed.
    His speech is full of anti-semitic legends and tales. The moment he reaches the word "Jews", his language is almost exact as the one appearing in the Protocols of the Elders of Zion (Only from a different body since the protocols were faked as being written by Jews).

    Appearently you have no clue what anti-Semitism is yourself. Anti-semites CAN regard highly of Jews, CAN think they are smart/shrewed and DO NOT necessarily think they should "wiped out".
    Anti-semitism is the hostility or discrimination against Jews as a complete group, and his speech is full of it. ("hostility toward or discrimination against Jews as a religious, ethnic, or racial group
    ", Mirriam Webster).

    You are obviously deluded. Where did he mention Israel, then?
    He said:
    * Israel was created by Europeans
    * He said that amongst the Jews there are those who do not approve Israel's actions

    And... That's it.
    He never said Israel is their enemy. He said "the Jews" are the enemy. and he already said not all Jews, given the context not the entire group of "the Jews", approve Israel, therefor he is undoubtedly seperating two groups: Israel and "the Jews".
    Trying to portray his speech as anti-Israeli is a flat out lie. His speech is an obvious attempt to portray anti-Semitism is a reasonable political stance.
    He DOES see Jews as adversaries, and NOT Israelis. That position is made perfectly clear when he says:

    "But think. We are up against a people who think. They [the people the Muslims are up agains] survived 2,000 years of pogroms [who survived 2,000 years of pogroms, Israelis? no, Jews] not by hitting back, but by thinking."
     

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