Dead Men Left

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Marc Mulholland has a few observations on Nick Cohen's latest splutterings regarding the anti-war left. Amongst them, Marc picks out:

...[Cohen's] comment that "You find this pattern time and again. The dominant voices in the rich world's left are consistently on the wrong side. You have to go back to the Hitler-Stalin pact of 1939 to find a similar accommodation with the dictatorial right."

It annoys me to see this pact as trotted out as the defining sin of the (pseudo)left. I suspect a little-Englanderism here. The worst sin of communism was leaving poor Britain in the lurch. (Second, `God that Failed'; third, knocking off intellectuals in the Great Terror; a rather poor fourth, slaughtering peasants).

Cohen's "Little Englanderism" is fast becoming his most pervasive political trait. His rambling, inconsequential thoughts on the "decline of the left" were almost incomprehensible to anyone who had played any part in the great upsurge of the global justice movement over the last five or six years. (A good response on these lines was made by The Virtual Stoa.) There seems to be a peculiar reversion to nationalism, as if support for your country on an imperialist adventure has started to corrode what ought to be basic inernationalist tenets.