Alan and I have been good friends for several years. In recent months he has become far more critical of the Zionist state than he was some years ago, as it has become more and more evident that the Israeli government is determined to carry out its genocidal program to obliterate Palestine. Alan’s website is well worth reading with care. It is at http://www.alanhart.net/. . To see the first of my open letters to him, go to the link by clicking on . To join the discussion, you can write me or Alan, whose address is Alan Hart <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Alan and I are linked by our shared humanitarian commitments. We are separated by our ideologies. My purpose in writing is to try to persuade Alan that his loyalties, which of course grew out of his life experiences, ought to be re-examined, and some of them discarded. I see his loyalty to various abstract “principles” as the major impediments to his coming to understand that my position is in certain critical ways much preferable to his. These abstractions are prominent in Alan’s writing. For example, in his 30 April 2011 note to me he said, “democracy exists nowhere in the world and least of all in some important respects in the U. S. of A. We have the framework for democracy but not the substance. There is a condition for democracy to exist. Citizens, the voters, have to be informed enough about issues that really matter in order to participate in debate about choices and call and hold their leaders/governments to account. There’s s no country in the world where citizens are informed enough to do this.”
The abstractions, which to Alan are not just abstractions but features of the real world, in that brief passage, are: democracy, the framework for democracy, condition for democracy is informed Citizens, the voters, participation of informed voters on issues that really matter to participate in debate about choices, and to call and hold their leaders/governments to account. Alan says that nowhere in the world are citizens well enough informed to do that, the implication being that if only they were, then democracy could flourish. I think that is a mirage to which Alan clings. His cherished ideal, “democracy” has never existed in reality. In fact, the overwhelming influence of Zionist ideology in the public media, most of which is owned by hyper-rich Jewish tycoons or other totally immoral greedy monsters allied with them (think Rupert Murdach), works actively and very effectively to hide this nefarious role of what should be called “Jewish Zionist money”.
Alan wrote, “the mainstream media has betrayed democracy”, as though he is unaware that the role of the mainstream media, as defined by its hyper-capitalist owners, is precisely to deceive the bulk of the people into ignorantly believing that they are “free people” who are privileged to live in a nation where they “enjoy the benefits of democracy.” Even though he knows the true state of affairs, he still clings to the quaint notion that “If only we had the resources necessary to get a real people power global movement going!” [he sighs with sadness, increasingly forlorn.] Of course the we of whom he speaks — the numerically overwhelming part of the population, as Alan knows probably better than I, have never had the money resources necessary to “get a real people power global movement going.” This terrible state of affairs, in which now billions of human beings are reduced to destitution, has nothing to do with luck or the so-called laws of chance. It is a consequence of the greed and lack of love that so-called “Westerners” are propagandized to believe is a consequence of “human nature”. It’s supposedly “in our genes. A “fatally flawed” species.
Making a Palestine of happy children
A model for making a world of happy people
The destruction of Palestine should be stopped and the land returned to its indigenous peoples. I presented a fairly brief sketch for doing this without any further bloodshed, torture, theft or suffering of any of the peoples involved, including the would-be Jewish Zionist conquerors. It’s so easy to scoff at the notion of seeking a non-violent, humane resolution, and to declare without further thought, That would be contrary to human nature. So easy and so fatal. One of the things I have learned from the indigenous peoples of Oaxaca is the existence of a “better way” to settle conflicts than British officialdom ever dreamed of.
To people whose life experience has been shaped almost entirely by the contemporary dominant global ideology, the possibility of a different way of living — with a really totally different set of governing values — seems inconceivable to most of the people I know in the U.S. It must seem to them that I’m oblivious to what “human nature” is, that I’m living in a dream world. So they act like the normal people they are: they ignore me and what seem to them to be my “mad ravings”.
No one can be expected to comprehend events and/or possibilities for human interaction that are totally outside his/her life experiences. If you tried to tell a native bushman of the Kalahari Desert in South Africa about snow, you would be thought to be delusional. Most of my American contacts have life experiences limited to the U.S. To them my experiences among indigenous Oaxaqueños who are not “naturally greedy and aggressive” seem incredible. They take me for a deluded romantic, and dismiss my vision of “how the world could be”. They “know” — they believe — what “human nature” is, and that, like an engraving in stone, it is frozen forever. I see their attitude as showing an unrelenting stubborness. And, I should empahsize, this stubborness is by no means limited to my self-labelled “liberal” friends. My American anarchist friends are also addicted to the notion that they are entitled to live at a level of material wealth that is increasingly beyond the reach of former “middle class” Americans. They too enjoy being privileged. Surprise! Surprise!
Just yesterday (the 18th of Aug 2011) I got a letter from an anarchist friend, who wrote in part, “XXXXX and I are safely back from Bread and Puppet in Vermont, and are all fired up, with batteries recharged, and working hard to "change the world." It was raining hard the whole way back. It was a difficult drive, but XXXXX got us through it okay”. The intrepid strugglers battling for a better world by driving several hundred miles to celebrate with other “turned on” radicals. How much gasoline burned? How much ecological damage in the pursuit of fun? No clue. No interest. It’s their right to have fun. And these are committed American anarchists! Do I sound as though I have contempt for principled people who prefer to win an argument and lose the world than to lose an argument? You bet! Preventing the genocide of the Palestinians is my first priority. Here are two papers on saving the Palestinians:
Alan Hart’s website, which features his blog, is at http://www.alanhart.net/
 An open letter to Alan Hart [Part I] is at http://site.www.umb.edu/faculty/salzman_g/t/2011-08-10.htm
 The ethics of a just solution of the “Palestinian/Israeli” conflict I posted this initially on my website, at http://site.www.umb.edu/faculty/salzman
_g/t/2010-11-13.htm. Subsequently, through my contact with Jillian C. York, I learned about the Canadian website, Media With Conscience News, and submitted my paper there for consideration. Dr. Shahram Vahdany, the Managing Editor, responded immediately and affirmatively (Thu, Apr 28, 2011 at 11:57 AM), Many thanks Professor, Please stay in touch and feel free to send us your work any time, Kind Regards, ShahramVahdany@mwcnews.net, http://www.mwcnews.net, 778-329-8867. The essay was at once posted on that site, with a photograph that they added. It is at http://mwcnews.net/focus/analysis/10252-palestinian-israel
George Salzman is a former American Jew living in Oaxaca, Mexico, an ex-physics prof, Univ of Massachusetts-Boston.
All comments and criticisms are welcome. <email@example.com>