Comments by progressive Israeli journalist Uri Avnery on
the curious phenomenon of Leftist support of brutal dictators.
Bloody Spring, by Uri Avnery, August 11, 2012:
... There seems to be a
kind of leftist monsterphilia around.
The same people who embraced Slobodan Milošević, Hosni
Mubarak, and Moammar Qaddafi now embrace Bashar al-Assad,
again loudly protesting against American imperialist designs
against this public benefactor. ...
A View from the Villa, by Uri Avnery, October 29, 2011:
I was sharply attacked by some
well-meaning European leftists
for blessing the awful monster
called NATO. Now, in retrospect,
it is quite obvious that the
overwhelming – if not unanimous
– opinion of the Libyans
themselves welcomed the
Where did I differ from these
leftists? I think that they have
sewn themselves into a kind of
During the Vietnam war they
arrived at a world view that was
appropriate for that particular
situation: there were good guys
and bad guys. The good guys were
the Vietnamese Communists and
their allies. The bad guys were
the US and its puppets. Since
then, they have applied this
schema to every situation around
the world: South Africa,
But every situation is
different. Vietnam is not Libya,
the South African problem was
much more simple than ours.
Great power politics may remain
constant, and very unattractive
at that, but there are huge
differences between the various
situations. I was very much
against the US wars in Vietnam,
Afghanistan and Iraq, and very
much in favor of the NATO
campaigns in Kosovo and Libya.
For me, the starting point of
every analysis is what the
people concerned want and need,
and only after that do I wonder
how the international schema
applies to them. Working from
the inside out, so to speak, not
from the outside in.
Also, I have never quite
understood the dogma which seems to answer all
questions: “it’s all about oil”. Gaddafi sold his oil on
the world market, and so will his successors, on the
same terms. International oil corporations are all the
same to me. Is there much of a difference between the
Russian Gazprom and the American Esso?
Some former Communists
seem to have a kind of inherited attachment to Russia,
almost automatically supporting its international
positions, from Afghanistan to Serbia to Syria. Why?
What is the similarity between Vladimir Putin and the
Soviets? Putin does not subscribe to the dictatorship of
the proletariat, he is quite satisfied with a
dictatorship of himself. ...
Articles on the Syria Conflict