‘David Fromkin, a professor of history and international relations at
As if setting out to prove Chomsky’s assertion that intellectuals are completely subservient to power, he published an op-ed entitled ‘Stuck in the Canal’ in yesterday’s Times.
The article purports to be a dispassionate look at the ‘
The esteemed professor surely understands that the nonsensical expression ‘the
It is nice of the Prof to collocate ‘European and American oil companies played an important role in Middle Eastern affairs’ with ‘the countries of the Middle East remained predominantly Western-influenced.’ Obviously he wouldn’t want to prejudice our own conclusions by actually pointing out the nature of that ‘important role’. And that insignificant British ‘presence’ was sufficient to station a soldier every two metres along the 163km long canal.
The professor feels no need to clarify why it might be that, ‘As early as 1952, the C.I.A. was searching for an Arab leader to support, someone who would make hard, unpopular decisions.’ Must be their commitment to democracy that leads them to want to support a ‘leader’ ready to sell out the popular aspirations of the led.
‘Eisenhower and Dulles believed that by their actions at
‘And in Europe, skeptics claimed the episode showed that the Americans intended to steal the empires of
Some say Kipling’s poem, apparently enjoining the US to accept the traditional ‘responsibility’ of the colonists of myth for the welfare of the colonized ‘sullen peoples’, was in reality intended as satirical. It begins:
Take up the White Man’s burden–
Send forth the best ye breed–
Go bind your sons to exile
To serve your captives’ need;
To wait in heavy harness,
On fluttered folk and wild–
Your new-caught, sullen peoples,
Half-devil and half-child.
Professor Fromkin may not be strictly accurate in writing ‘Within years of the
And, as I wrote in response to Robert’s post,
It is also worth remembering that it’s not over yet. Some of the trophies acquired during the Spanish-American War, unlike the
Although it doesn’t get as much attention as its French counterpart, the
‘And its victory in the Sinai campaign — one of many dazzling triumphs — illustrated the paradox that the more Israel won on the battlefield, the further it got from achieving the peace that it sought.’ A curious paradox that the regional bully, after a long campaign of ethnic cleansing, consistently winning ‘dazzling triumphs’ against its neighbours fails to achieve peace. And obviously peace is precisely the objective of all the wars.
In this connection, it is worth remembering, although far be it from the Professor of History to remind us, that today also marks the massacre of 47 helpless ‘Israeli Arab’ civilians lined up against a wall at Kafr Qasem and shot for the crime of returning home after the curfew was declared and nobody had bothered to tell them about. Fortunately, another historian, Tom Segev, writing in Ha’aretz, has not forgotten this irrelevant detail.
A spokeswoman at the Education Ministry quoted Minister Yuli Tamir: "The massacre and the subsequent trial became a foundation stone in Israeli society's national consciousness and imprinted upon generations of commanders and soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces the moral boundary by which to act." In other words, we've learned the lesson. How nice.
How nice, indeed! It’s a relief to know that the IDF has known the moral boundary since 1956 and cleaves to its fabled purity of arms, never, ever hurting anyone who doesn’t deserve it.On a happier note, ‘On Oct. 29, 1929, stock prices collapsed on the New York Stock Exchange amid panic selling. Thousands of investors were wiped out.’