Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Benny Morris: Hero or Psychopath?
I have a high regard for truth - so high that my dear friend Shaykh Yusuf Estes says I should change my name to Abdulhaqq, "The Slave of Truth." (In Arabic, the word al-Haqq, meaning "Truth" or "Reality," is one of the most beautiful names of God.)
I told Shaykh Yusuf that yes, truth has made me its slave: I've done a whole lot of work on behalf of truth without being paid a penny.
But is dedication to truth enough? Take Benny Morris - please.
From the standpoint of dedication to truth, Benny Morris is one of the greatest heroes of our time. An ardent Zionist, Morris nonetheless pioneered the Israeli New Historians' movement and demolished some of the biggest lies of Zionist pseudo-history. Morris helped prove that the the Zionist version of the history of Israel was a lie, and that the Palestinian version of the nakba -- the horrific ethnic cleansing of 1948 -- was much closer to the truth.
Yet Morris is not only unapologetic about the monstrous crimes against humanity that created the State of Israel, he actually argues that these crimes did not go far enough -- that more and larger crimes should have been committed. Apparently he thinks that hundreds or thousands more Palestinian women and children should have had their guts ripped out with bayonets. (Google Deir Yassin for the bloody details.) His position could be summed up as: The genocidal founders of Israel should have finished the job. "Sometimes ethnic cleansing is justified..Even the great American democracy could not have been created without the annihilation of the Indians."
Certainly Morris is being uncommonly truthful in openly expressing his support for genocide. But is that heroic? Imagine a German saying yes, Hitler's regime intended to eradicate the Jews from Europe, killed roughly six million in the process...and should have killed the rest and finished the job. Would this German equivalent of Benny Morris be a hero of truth--or a psychopath?
Psychopaths usually lie like they breathe. They spin everything they say to support their own interests. This is what most Zionists have always done. But occasionally psychopaths are capable of the most breathtakingly truthful admissions about their own horrendous conduct. The same psychopath who had been lying to get away with murder for decades might, after he is caught, truthfully describe in clinical detail how he raped, murdered, and cut people into little bitty pieces, all without the slightest hint of shame or guilt...and even express regret that one of his victims got away.
I suspect that Benny Morris, far from being a hero, represents the latter category of psychopath.
* * *
Foundation Myths, Stifling debate on the Nakba—the Arabic word for catastrophe and how Palestinians refer to Israel’s founding—prevents a free and open discussion of the historical record (Tablet Magazine)
Survival of the Fittest?, An Interview with Benny Morris (Counterpunch)
The Rise of the Second-String Psychopaths by David Schwartz
Twilight of the Psychopaths by Kevin Barrett
Jeff Gates, in Guilt by Association (p.21) finds that the "psychological profile that accurately described...key operatives (in the Zionist criminal syndicate)" was: "Psychopathy: A mental disorder (featuring) superficial charm, pathological lying, egocentricity, lack of remorse, and callousness..."
And for the most fair-minded, readable and comprehensive history of Israel-Palestine available in English, read Alan Hart's Zionism trilogy.)