• 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 ...

Friday, July 28, 2017

I cannot disclose who said the following, but the arguments about the US and British armies today sound very interesting.

"The peasants [of the Russian army prior 1917] in uniform weren't mercenaries, but conscripts. The US and British soldiers [today] aren't conscripts, not the historical equivalent of the Russian imperial army, but the historical equivalent of Hessians or the Swiss guard. There's a huge difference between those two. Only a conscript is a worker in uniform - all the others are bourgeois cops with bigger or smaller guns.

Edit: I can't find any historical example where a revolution was won with the aid of professional soldiers - it was always won by defeating them, be they Hessians, the Swiss Guard or Cossacks...and some US soldiers are OK and have resisted imperialism - still doesn't change the US military's role as a whole...

I never said a soldier "can't act in favour of the masses because he wasn't conscripted" - I said they most often don't...I do think that an army which consists mostly of ppl who had to join it to escape a precarious situation with no affordable healthcare or education can have class consciousness - it DOES have class consciousness. Just not working class."

One should wonder what happened in the Egyptian, Tunisian and Syrian armies during and after the uprisings.

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