re: "Norman Finkelstein Interview with Frank Barat: BDS Campaign, Imperial College London" (England)
I watched your talk with Frank Barat from last February (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASIBGSSw4lI).
I don't disagree with everything you said, but Mr. Barat seemed overwhelmed by your passion and did not ask questions that should have been asked of you.
According to you, some of the opponents of the Israeli occupation, and of the Israeli state itself, are "cultic" and not pragmatic, and are bound to fail due to the fact that their legal arguments are hypocritical. Therefore they are lacking in appeal to the masses of people because they want the law upheld with regard to the Israeli occupation but not with regard to the Israeli state's right to exist.
Mr. Barat should have asked you, what masses are you talking about, if not the Western masses? Surely the fall of the Fourth Reich in Jerusalem would have enormous appeal to the region's 100 million Arabs, but for some reason they don't seem to comprise a meaningful constituent in your realpolitik. Why?
A haven for Judaic persons can be guaranteed in the pre-1967 borders without that haven being based on racist Zionist laws of return that give residency rights to Judaics from New Zealand and Brooklyn over the children of native Palestinians.
The Nazi/Talmudic Israeli government can be legally overthrown without overthrowing a guaranteed safe haven for Judaic people now resident in Palestine. What would be wrong with such an overthrow? If it worked for South Africa why can't it work for Palestine?
Your reference to the "law" of the United Nations smacks of a divine mandate. There is nothing divine about the U.N. and if the Divestment and Solidarity people were to drop references to U.N. law and harken to appeals to the immemorial law against colonial empires and racist reichs, then the hypocrisy you excoriate would be resolved.
You are willing to support the right to exist of the racist Zionist regime on the basis that its "rights" were established by the UN (at the behest of Stalin and Truman). You don't want the fate of the Israeli Arabs to trump considerations of the survival of the Zionist system since many other countries subjugate their minorities, so why single out the Israelis for doing it?
And by extension, your argument implies, why try to stop this oppression by overthrowing the Israeli government and creating a new government with an equalitarian constitution?
One thing that makes the Israeli oppression different from your example of the Dalits ("untouchables") in India or another flagrant instance, that of the Shiites in Bahrain, is that those governments don't run morality pageants and daily "Holocaust" museum tours showcasing the supreme ethics of their nations over the rest of humanity, with "lessons" for all mankind that no should ever forget. Whether or not this Talmudic megalomania plays in Peoria should not be the main criterion for whether or not we should call it to account.
Unlike some of your Leftist critics, I accept the fact that you are basically honest and that you have arrived at your latest views from a desire to be politically effective and fair to all.
I see some serious holes in your position however, and I hope that at some point you will address my questions in some forum.