Nick Cohen in the Observer on Left and Iraq

Just a few initial observations:

Firstly we need to define terms. Is he against liberalism, left liberalism (whatever that is) Obama (presumably because he rates him as a left-liberal or what?) He sprays his attacks around at anyone who does not support US intervention as though we are also in favour of supporting any old dictator.

2. Many on the left (and Galloway does not represent the majority of us) were against Saddam from the very beginning and certainly when he was being supported by the West as a good force against Iran, responsible for a war which cost at least a million lives. Hallabjah was a crime against humanity for us right from the start, not just when it suited us.

3. Most of us are as much against the Muslim Brotherhood as Nick but we also see the revolution which brought them to pod which they have hijacked as an ongoing permanent process and will support it when it removes the MB from power.

4. None of this can be done using the self-serving arguments of the US, which is not a force for peace in the world, but a force for its own self interests. The number of theocratic regimes it opposes is surpassed only by the number of those (even worse ones) that it supports (saudi arabia being the main example).

5. Nick does not have the monopoly of concern on these matters and arrogates to himself a sort of pure anti-clericalism which leads him dangerously close to islamophobia.

6. Just to make it clear, although are some on the left who have turned a blind eye to the crimes of islamic forces they are in a minority (and in the process of disintegration themselves) and the revolutionary process which has swept away the dictators must push forward to also sweep away the clericalist and theocratic orders to replace it with a secular democratic and socialist order which will lead to real liberation rather than the faux liberation of the State Department and the Department of US defense.

7. The invasion of Iraq remains an illegal war based on fraudulent information carried out for the political interest of the Bush administration which needed to be seen to be “doing something” about 9/11.

8. It is important for rational secular forces not to fall prey to the arguments of those department who will always put themselves first, rather than those they pretend to support.

I will expand and tidy this up later

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