August 09, 2006

Sartre on Genocide

The stream of images and reports of the continued American-back Israeli evils triggered my return to Jean-Paul Sartre’s 1967 article Vietnam: Imperialism and Genocide, written in his capacity as President of the International War Crimes Tribunal.
It is not surprising that a search of American websites, even/especially academic philosophy ones, that there is remarkable vitriol aimed at Sartre (one of my heroes). As this tends to be at the level generalised dismissal, I guess it is as much based on fear and hate of someone who got them bang to rights. Anyway, the striking thing about re-reading the essay is that simply replacing the Vietnam references with Iraq/Lebanon and America with Israel/America you get a pretty trenchant and accurate indictment of the current practice of genocide. As I write this, an Israeli on the TV has just said that as far as he is concerned for every Israeli who is killed 1000 Lebanese should die. As it is, they are only managing a ratio of 10:1 at present but they haven’t actually invaded properly yet. Add to this 3000 wounded, the million displaced, and the environmental disaster of the oil slick caused when they bombed Jeih power plant. It is generally felt that 45% of casualties being children is indictable also. Although personally I don’t subscribe to this equation that makes a child death more meaningful; in the seventeenth century it was felt that a child death was less significant because they were less aware of what they were losing. Call me old-fashioned! Either way, there’s genocide (by definition intentional) going on.

To add further outrage the ‘solution’ being pushed by Blair is the proxy international army to be a ‘mandated’ contracted-out Israeli army. Blair’s been looking for his ‘legacy’ before he fucks off to some highly paid international statesman-troubleshooter. He’s not actually said yet whether he is putting British troops in. Not much has been made of the fact that he already holds the record for sending the Army into more conflicts in British History so maybe one more won’t matter. Except to the dead.

Anyway this is a text for the "50 Heads" project, I have been working on during this period of darkness:

0. With epiphanous sigh save your rapture and replace it;
domination is not prostitution penetration is safe
temporary customer care from punishment as long as
there's no permanent damage – spread over time autism:
ceasefires and resolutions (surpassed): an enforced
homosexual encounter until it is too late. I close my eyes.
It would be good for the musicality if you opened the door
without saying unwritten rules, assumptions stroke
expectations govern an employee's working relationship
with the employer to the length of flowers bound
appropriate for subsequent use. Repulsed GUERNICA
(veiled in a blue): under your gaze, with semen dripping
from my face, masturbate on my knees the horrible noise
of extractor fans vows to thee my country – a cruel rather
than vicious 'mistress', highly skilled, the mechanical
aspect of their gestures calculated rather than frenzied,
offer no resistance, use my labour to please eager and
committed rather than virginally tentative, derogated
effectiveness astray as gestures of consolation from
interference patterns of net and skin. To compromise, or
accept barbarous dissolution, endless war denotes
‘reorganization of the urban syntax by means of a series of
micro-tactical actions’ and a future that looked bleak for
vertebrates: 1

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