Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Challenges facing the women’s liberation movement

"But stop, I am told. Saying so ‘just supports Western propaganda’ - something by the way that the Islamic regime of Iran often tells women and men it is hauling off to prison and execution.
How absurd. It is like Iranian women’s rights activists telling one to stop opposing US-led militarism because it supports the ‘Islamic regime of Iran’s propaganda!’
The religious-nationalist anti-imperialist left always ready to act as prefect when women’s rights under Islamic laws are concerned has an affinity towards Islam, which it views as an ‘oppressed religion’ bullied by the USA.
It is an anti-colonial movement whose perspectives coincide with that of the ruling classes in the so-called Third World.
This grouping is on the side of the ‘colonies’ no matter what goes on there.
And their understanding of the ‘colonies’ is Eurocentric, patronising and even racist.
In the world according to them, the people in these countries are one and the same with the regimes they are struggling against.
So at Stop the War Coalition demonstrations here in Britain, they carry banners saying ‘We are all Hezbollah;’ at meetings they segregate men and women and urge unveiled women to veil out of ‘solidarity’ and ‘respect’.
But even their anti-imperialism - their badge of honour - is pathetically half-baked; it does not even scratch beneath the surface to see how political Islam is an integral part of the US’ militarism and new world order.
Their historical amnesia of even the past 30-40 years ignores that the political Islamic movement was encouraged and brought to centre stage by Western governments as a green belt against the former Soviet Union during the Cold War.


Whilst the anti-imperialist left defends and justifies political Islam on the one hand, the virulently racist and right-wing defends US militarism and the brutal Israeli occupation of Palestine on the other.


They are ‘concerned’ about the ‘rights’ of women and apostates so they can ban the Koran and ‘Muslim immigration.’ So they can stop the sub-human teeming hordes destroying the Christian nature of Europe and the West.
They are quite happy to defend Christian religious morality, restrict the benefits due single mothers, demand exemptions from the Sexual Orientation Regulations, bar funds for AIDS- related and contraception-related health services abroad if they provide abortions and consider the women’s rights movement’s fight for equality ‘the destruction of the nuclear family and of the power structures of society in general.’
According to their warped worldview, ‘the West has skyrocketing divorce rates and plummeting birth rates, leading to a cultural and demographic vacuum that makes [it] vulnerable to a take-over.’"

Maryam Namazie, speech at a seminar entitled ‘Sexual apartheid, political Islam and women's rights. (maryamnamazie.blogspot.com Tuesday, March 11, 2008)
She takes on two sides that are a problem. The appeasers and the demonizers.
I think it's a good point that as the Islamists got a real boost thanks to American funding, the Left is supporting an old American strategy.
Also, what she says about the Christian Right is right. They aren't against fundamentalism, they just don't want competition. They may be less dangerous for the moment, and so was Stalin during WW2.
And I mean, it's crazy to hear people talk about "plummeting birthrates" when the world is overpopulated. We should make the whole world a place with plummeting birthrates, but no doubt the Catholics have other plans.

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