Monday, 31 May 2010

Israel's almighty fuck up?

So, news coming in is that Israel boarded the boats in the aid flotilla whilst still in international waters,  Initial reports vary between 10-19 killed, possibly including Sheikh Ra'ed Salah, the leader of the Islamic movement in Israel.

OK, so Israeli side:

This group consisted of armed terrorists and people intent on a violent confrontation who attacked the IDF as they boarded the ships. This resulting defensive action resulted in 19 dead protesters. 

The IDF gave them warning, as did the government, both last week and before they boarded. The group were looking for violence, they got violence.

Now the protester side:

A group of unarmed people funded by genuine charities were intent on breaking the Israeli blockade and deliver humanitarian aid directly. They ignored warnings and demands to sail to Port in Israel, since this would go against the point of the demonstration, which was to highlight the immoral nature of the blockade, since it represents collective punishment, an international crime. 

They were unarmed and non-violent, victims of unprovoked violence.

Where they agree:

They were seeking confrontation, though methods differ. Israel says violently, the protesters say non-violently. 


OK, so keeping to the established facts as far as I can... I don't think there was ever any doubt was there (?) that these were avowed non-violent protesters who, as well as trying to get aid into Gaza were also clearly aiming to protest by refusing to call into port and allowing the Israelis to take the aid by road.  I think this is pretty reasonable.  The blockade is illegal under international law and I certainly wouldn't trust them to pass on the building materials and all the aid in full.

The boats contained many prominent people, humanitarians, authors, tv crews, politicians etc as well as many charity workers.  No doubt the Israeli justification is that they are helping a terrorist organisation which is true to the extent that Israel sees Hamas as such.  My girlfriend having been there, I know for a fact that most people in Gaza see Hamas as a pain in the ass as well.

I simply do not buy the attacked with knives line, nor the fact that special forces would be so easily disspossesed of weaponry at close range whilst suffering no fatalities themselves.  Such a high profile non-violent action with such exposure would have been prepared for this and, as with any other non-violent action, they would know that their power lies in the fact that they ARE unarmed and defenceless (that's kinda the point).  I do not see how Israel are going to succeed in justifying this.

If the Muslim leader in Israel is dead, then this just adds the cherry to one almighty fuck-up by Israel.

The Israeli line I have just seen is that the groups intent was violence, and so that's what they got.

When it all starts coming down to definitions you know it's fucked.

So Turkeys ambassador is recalled, Turkey and Greece cancel military exercises with Israel, Protests are forming all over the Middle-East, including i'm pleased to say in Israel itself.   What have you done Israel?  Fucked an op or sent a message?  Either way you've fucked up royally here.

Most Likely Interpretation Neutrals Around The World Will Form?

A group of unarmed protesters unlawfully killed in a bungled operation whilst trying to deliver aid to a people suffering collective punishment by an apartheid regime controlled by militaristic, ruthless people with ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA THAT THE INTERNET IS SHOWING ALL OF THIS TO THE ENTIRE FUCKING WORLD.

Saturday, 22 May 2010

The time is soon!

When I was at uni, I wrote an essay between the modernist and post-modernist historiographies. I called it heterohistoriography and it was inspired by Daniel Dennetts method of studying consciousness that he calls heterophenomenology.

It means in essence deriving conclusions from two different sets of data-points in order to get a more accurate overall picture. Dennett describes the problems of using subjective phenomenology to study consciousness without corresponding it with actual data: fmri, physiological testing etc. This data-driven side has only recently become available yet it doesn't merely add the possibility with corroborating subjective accounts of consciousness, oh no! It is data about us, about our brains, which means it feeds down into every conceivable discipline. Cognitive science should and will be the next inter-disciplinary revolution a la post-modernism, History included.

Having studied consciousness, I eventual deducted my theory of history as a by product of my efforts to better understand the stream-of-consciousness. I realised that our selves are illusory, merely the synthesis of our genetic potential with all the memes from our journey through our environment. Our memes and our emotions dictate how we process information and their relationship is key to the process of History. See, animals dont have memes, they have pure instinct, emotion if you will. As our brains developed into what they are today, it allowed for such key developments as mimicry, recallable memory, speech and imagining future scenarios. These kicked of a second evolution, aside from genetics: the evolution of ideas. Our minds have ALWAYS been rational (always are, unless actually insane), it is merely that have gone from a world of little knowledge to a world full of knowledge. That reason now has a far, far greater set of data points from which to derive its reality. This is what constitutes Hegel's progression toward reason, his mistake being that of Kant in that he thought they were glimpsing some pure reason when in fact they merely had broader knowledge.

As harbingers of the second evolution, we have created a form of accelerated change. This idea places communication technology as the corrolate to morality and progress. Why? Its pretty easy to conceive a basic evolutionary trait: fear the unknown, protect the known (if it's known, it clearly hasnt killed you yet). Because until now we have been beings of the same genes but separate minds, in a world dominated by 'elites' that fear is easily exploited. But if the whole world share memes, then it is not merely our family, our village, our country that gets incorporated into our moral sphere... its everyone that has influenced our development, everyone we have come to know.

I do not say that national pride is bad... im saying it is arbitary, It is based on lines drawn politically hundreds of years ago which have little meaning to me or many of the young generation. I care as much for the dispossesed West Papuans as I do other English people I have never met AND THAT IS GOING TO SCARE GOVERNMENTS SOON.

The internet is to the printing press what the atomic bomb is to a butter knife. So what will this coming social revolution be to the Enlightenment?