• Books: Bury the Chains by Adam Hochschild, Endless War: Hidden Functions of the "war on terror" by David Keen, Capital Vol. 1, Tin Drum by Günter Grass, What is Islam? by Shahab Ahmed, Desiring Arabs by Joseph Massad, Spies, Soldiers and Statesmen by Hazem Kandil, La Condition Humaine by André Malraux, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, Imagined Community by Benedict Anderson, Culture and Imperialism by Edward Said, The Wretched of the Earth by Frantz Fanon, The Richness of Life by Stephen Jay Gould, Children of the Alley by Naguib Mahfouz, The Mass Psychology of Fascism by Wilhelm Reich, Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, 1984 by George Orwell, Noli me Tangere by José Rizal, Age of Extremes by Eric Hobsbawm, ذهنية التحريم لصادق جلال العظم, Karl Marx by Francis Wheen, وليمة لأعشاب البحر لحيدر حيدر, Candide by Voltaire, النزعات المادية في الفلسفة العربية الإسلامية لحسين مروة, Listen Little Man by Wilhelm Reich ..
  • Films: Alexanderplatz by Rainer Fassbinder, Clockwork Orange, Apocalypse Now, The Battle of Algiers, films by P. P. Passolini, Persepolis, Midnight Express, 1984, Papillion, Gangs of New York, Sophie Scholl, Life of Brian, Ivan the Terrble, Battleship Potemkine ...

Monday, October 31, 2016

A Dr.  preaching neo-orientalism, imperialism and patronizing other countries, brandishing an empty term ("democracy) of the West, i.e. the capitalist, imperialist democracy of the Western powers that we have seen in practice not only in wars and occupations, but in IMF adjustment programmes, in global capitalism's uneven development, in plunder by corporations, in NGOs working with repressive regimes and perpetuating power structure, in Western powers working with local regimes in aborting, diverting or co-opting uprisings or confining it to the parliamentary capitalist democracy, oppression within the undemocratic European Union itself, level of corruption on an unprecedented scale, driving down wages, undermining unions (even banning people from joining a union), gambling with pensions, corporatization of education, undermining academic freedom, a development of an oligarchy and a mediaocracy, depolitization, passivity and narcissism, a plague called identity politics instead, the rise of the far-right as a consequence of neo-liberalism and a crisis of the nation-state.

You don't have to read the book. The rhetoric of the West's mission to spread "democracy" and the title of the post are quite telling. According to Dr. Klass's "democracy" is when "citizens have a meaningful voice in determining how governments make decisions about their lives." That is the narrow, mainstream concept of democracy that we hear everyday. That implies that Western citizens through the voting process are "determining how governments make decisions about their lives". 

Dr Klass condemns using violence to spread democracy. The use of violence is not the main and the initial means of "spreading democracy". "Democracy" (i.e., free market and privatisation, stability, political dependency, debt, monopoly of the media, etc) has been imposed through peaceful means: unequal trade deals, economic adjustment programmes, perpetuation of uneven development, geopolitical interests, sborting or confining people uprisings, support of the "moderates" against the progressives and the leftists, propgating the bourgeois concept of women's freedom and culturalizing social antagonisms,  

The argument of "spreading democracy" is inherently flawd because reactionary powers cannot by their nature spread democracy. The history of of imperialism in the Middle East, Latin America and Indonesia, for instance, is rife of the Western war on democracy.

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This is a nice piece. The philosophical roots of rights-based liberal individualism lie in efforts to legitimate imperial expansion