Sunday, July 15, 2007

Petras At It Again?

For those of you not up on James Petras, he's well-known for writing dozens of books and hundreds of articles critical of the US imperial project, with a primary focus on Latin America. He's also written some interesting more recent stuff debunking a lot of the nonsense about "globalization"

More recently, he's decided to take up the issue of Zionist influence in the US and came out a short while back with a first book -- a despicable tract that would suggest to any critical, sensible reader that the man fell off his bicycle and received a sever head injury. He's now written another vicious screed. Before reading the publisher's description of his latest, below, those of you who haven't seen it might want to take a look at my critique of Petras' earlier conspiracist piece of drek which I originally wrote for Against the Current.

As I stated in my initial review, Petras' horribly flawed analysis (if one could call it such!) will be taken up all over the place, particularly by "know nothing" reactionary and backward elements. We now learn that his book on the "Ziocons" and their control of the US has now been translated into Arabic, Indonesian, German, Italian and Arabic.

As a friend of mine put it, Petras' work will not only serve to discredit the entire Left, but it will manage to drive numbers of Jews further toward the right since the active supporters of Israel's expansionist project will use his ramblings as a key example of the "new Anti-Semitism," the supposed anti-Semitism of the Left.

Check out this noise!:

Clarity Press, Inc. is pleased to announce Rulers and Ruled in the US Empire: Bankers, Zionists and Militants by James Petras—a brilliant (??) and succinct guide to the systemic dimensions of the US Empire: the social forces which rule it, the politico-economic and military means whereby US domination is assured, and the current state and possibilities of resistance.

Expanding upon his highly successful book, The Power of Israel in the United States (now available in translation in Japanese, Indonesian, German, Italian and Arabic), Petras reviews how financial capital dominates the US economy, and sets the parameters for political debate on the US role in the world economy and its implementation.

Questions of war and peace in the Middle East, however, are set not by oil interests or by finance capital, but by the Israel-Zionist power configuration, which exerts tremendous leverage over Congress, the mass media and the executive branch. This conflict of interests within the US ruling elite has led to a mounting schism. In pushing the US to engage in the disastrous Iraq war and promoting a further potentially catastrophic assault against Iran, the Zionist/militarist sector of the ruling elite has come into conflict with the interests of US finance capital, which seeks to entrench itself worldwide through the global liberalization of trade.

Finance capital and its political representatives in the US government depend on the support of client regimes in other countries, including those considered relatively ‘center left’, to sustain the US empire.

However, in pursuit of freedom, justice, national independence and peace, powerful social movements and in some circumstances armed national resistance forces have emerged to challenge the power of the financial ruling class, the Zionist power configuration and their collaborator client rulers.

Faced with a world in which the rule of financial, Zionist and collaborator elites brings us to the brink of catastrophic war in the Middle East and social decay at home, Americans need to know who is calling the shots, how they do so, and why their interests do not coincide with the common good—of either the USA or the rest of the world.

These questions have more than academic interest—the answers affect our everyday lives. From the crises of workers' rights, forced emigration and our health care system to the false panaceas of foreign investment and trade liberalization, from the plunder of domestic infrastructure in support of foreign wars to the infliction of genocides upon distant populations—this is the window we need to get a clear grip on the calamitous impacts of the US-dominated world system, and assess the possibilities of global resistance.

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