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Sunday, May 31, 2009

Beyond dissidence: Noam Chomsky speaks with Nermeen Al-Mufti about Gaza, capitalism and the responsibilities of the intellectual

What do you think about Israel's assault on the Gaza Strip? What might be done in order to achieve a peaceful solution to the conflict between Israel and Palestine?

The US-Israeli attack on Gaza was a savage and brutal war crime. The term US- Israeli is accurate. Israel relied on US weapons, in violation of US, as well as international, law, and the US provided crucial diplomatic and ideological support. The diplomatic support included blocking UN efforts to bring the conflict to an end. The ideological support included overwhelming votes in Congress supporting the aggression, and almost universal agreement that it was justified, even if, perhaps, disproportionate. In fact, the attack was completely without justification. The way this issue is framed -- by President Obama and virtually everyone else -- is that Israel had a right to defend itself against Hamas rockets. But that is not the issue at all.

The issue is whether Israel had a right to defend itself by force against rockets. It is universally agreed that force can be used only when peaceful means are exhausted. No one believes that the Nazis had the right to use force in defence against the terror of the partisans.


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