Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Newt Toots...

So Newt Gingrich thinks Palestinians are an invented group? Hmm, well yes but all peoples, including Americans and !Kung Bushmen, are invented peoples. Why? Because there is only one human race on the planet. Conclusion: All tribes, ethnicities, nations...are "invented".

I think the problem with Newt is that he fancies himself a historian while he is really, like most politicians, a demagogue, a demagogue, in Gingrich's case, of the worst sort. Clearly, as I mentioned, all peoples and cultures are invented unless, presumably, like Newt, you believe in American exceptionalism, unless you believe, in other words, that the US is in some way, shape, or form, god's chosen people who he (Newt's god is always masculine) has picked to be a light to a dark world (more Newt demagoguery or does he really believe this?). So the question is why Gingrich is singling out the Palestinians and why is he hypergeneralising about them by calling them all terrorists? Pandering for Jewish votes? Gingrich is after all running for president and the myth of a vacant Palestine has become an article of faith for many in Israel and in the West. Does Newt really believe his very selective take on identity?

What is ironic in all of this, and being a Niebuhrian I love ironies, is the fact that Gingrich has a PhD in history from Tulane and claims to be a historian. He is actually, however, a victim of amnesia when it comes to the history he claims to know. The blood and soil nationalism of which Gingrich hints does not derive from some god figure, the god gave us this land for time and eternity ideology. It is actually the product of Europe, the manufactured product of Europe. Blood and soil nationalism is a creation of a particular time and place, specifically Europe after the French Revolution. And ironically, given what happened just before and during World War II, this European nationalism created not only French, German, and Italian nationalisms but also Zionism, Jewish nationalism, in its secular and eventually religious forms, the nationalism that would build Israel in part by cleansing the land of Palestinians.

No comments:

Post a Comment