While (naturally) abjuring anti-Semitism, two Harvard professors are currently blaming the Israel lobby (AIPAC) for a lot of what ails America, specifically its foreign policy. (Their essay, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy, is in pdf form here.) Frankly I have some sympathy for the professors because it’s very hard for the secular mind – I know this well from my own experience – to identify with and understand societies deeply bound in faith and tradition. These societies’ behavior must be explained by material conditions – and perhaps they can be, but not nearly as simply, and ultimately dismissively, as these professors do. The Harvard men do not really believe bin Laden and his cohorts when they talk about the Caliphate. It is to us secularists, after all, mythological. So when the Madrid Atocha Station is blown up – at the very heart of Al Andaluz – it must be as a result of the US Israeli policy and not the continuation of a war that has been going on for over a thousand years. Actions by Al Qaeda in Indonesia must be similarly reduced. We could call this reductionism a form of racism, but I think it’s a kind of traditionalist marxism, revisionist or otherwise. After all, despite being a rather prolix book, Das Kapital did make the world simpler and in some ways more comforting to understand – it’s the economic inequality, stupid. But is that true, in the final analysis?
The NYSun has more. (hat tip: Janet Levy)