"World War Dangers in Syria” “Syria and the S-300s,” and “Democratic Fascism vs the Trump Kind” provoked strong feedback this week. Readers were interested in discussing matters related to imperial attacks on Syria and the role of Black voters in the Democratic Party.
In “World War Dangers in Syria” Margaret Kimberley analyses the risks of recent American and Israeli aggression against Syria.
Referring to Washington’s wars on Syria, Iraq, and Libya reader Bill Weldin writes:
“Of course, our white American rulers sought to crush these socialist success stories, just as Jefferson sought to destroy Haiti’s black success story with his US embargo of 1806. Now as then, our white rulers maintained that the world must be made to believe that no alternative exists—because no alternative is allowed to exist—to predatory capitalism with its extremes of wealth, longevity, death during pregnancy, infant mortality, and the like. But while Gaddafi’s socialist Libya and Saddam’s socialist Iraq have now been replaced by US “failed states,” the people of Syria fight on. Because they see themselves as one people, the Syrian people—be they Sunni, Shiite, Christian, or Jew. Freedom of religion does that to people: it helps makes them a people. And so the Syrian people fought on as one people for their secular, socialist, religiously-free nation—the Syrian nation—for 4 long, increasingly hopeless years with mostly Soviet-era weapons against terrorists with advanced American weapons, backed by the US Air Force, until Putin finally overcame his personal bonds of affection for Israel, going back to childhood (which is an essay in itself), and entered the war on Syria’s side with a few dozen planes. That was enough to ensure that the multi-faith forces of the Syrian nation will eventually win—short of the white supremacists in Washington committing ground troops or going nuke!”
In “Syria and the S-300s: Re-Centering the People in Global Struggles for Power” columnist Ajamu Baraka works towards a people-centered analysis of the geopolitics of the Russia’s missile sales to Syria.
Wallace Nixon responds emphasizing the role of Israel:
“We now know something about Israel´s criminal behavior in the Middle East. However, few in the United States are aware of the criminal support and counseling Israel gives to police in many American cities. The same Israelis who murder and incarcerate children in Palestine and violate Syrian airspace whenever they want, killing civilians, do not have to answer for what they teach US policemen when they travel there for advanced training in things such as interrogation techniques and crowd control. Most important, blacks in the country feed at the Zionist hog trough and find it not wise to bite the hand that feeds them, but there are serious thinkers amongst us who dare to defy the enforced silence we see when it comes to Israeli crimes at home and abroad. Some time ago the city of Durham decided to discontinue sending their police officers to Israel to better learn how to murder poor people in minority communities. It was a commendable and just thing to do! How many black people know about this singular and necessary effort to eliminate barbaric behavior by police?”
“Democratic Fascism vs the Trump Kind” by Glen Ford argues that American fascism exists in both white Trumpism and its “diverse” Democratic Party adversaries who share the goals of austerity and endless war.
T. Davis replies:
“Enjoyed the article and was very sympathetic with it. I did, however, find one phrase in it a painful expression of wishful thinking. To say that Blacks are ‘historically, the most left-leaning and peace-minded’ group ignores the reality of the present.
As a white person I struggled to understand the overwhelming support of Blacks for Hillary Clinton as opposed to Bernie Sanders, the latter being remarkably more left-leaning domestically even if any foreign policy differences were obscured or not discussed. The only explanation I could conceive was that Blacks, being still basically an oppressed minority, are quick to attach themselves to supposed heroes as a gesture of hope.”
I suggest that this reader will find the answer to his inquiry in Glen’s piece, “Vector of Fear: Blacks and the Democratic Party” analyzing Black voting strategy in the 2016 election. As Ford wrote in February of that election year:
“Blacks are drawn into the jaws of the Democratic Party, not by ideological affinity, but in search of protection from the Republicans. This is an entirely different dynamic than an alignment based on thoughtful examination of political platforms. It’s not about picking a candidate or party that sees the world as most Black people do, from the left side of the spectrum, on matters of social justice and peace. Rather, the overarching objective is to choose a candidate from the Democratic wing of the Rich Man’s duopoly who is best equipped to defeat his or her Republican counterpart. Under these stilted circumstances, the Democratic candidate’s actual political positions become near-irrelevant to the Black primary voter, compared to the candidate’s perceived ability to win a national election. The question becomes, is the Democrat strong enough to beat back the latest offensive from the GOP? – which Black people perceive as an existential threat. In the grip of that mindset, the contestant that is richer, better connected to the party apparatus and more acceptable to masses of white voters is the better Black choice.”
We anticipate another week of thoughtful letters on pressing issues. The best of them will continue to be featured here.
Jahan Choudhry is Comments Editor for Black Agenda Report. He is an organizer with the Saturday Free School based in Philadelphia, PA.