August 4, 2012
Today’s Wall Street Journal features an American-Iranian interview of Martin Peretz, a prominent American Jew who has a life-long devotion to the ideal of Zionism in the Middle East. Over at The Washington Post, Dr. Henry Kissinger, also a prominent American Jew as well as former Secretary of State and Nobel Peace Prize winner, has an Op-Ed arguing that realist versus idealist solutions to problems in the Middle East will both fail by not combining both strategies. And China yesterday voted with eleven of the other most repressive, authoritarian governments in the world to not have the United Nations criticize the repressive government in Syria, arguing that the problems in Syria are the result of foreign intervention in Syrian domestic affairs.
One can only shake a head, witnessing the futility of such thinking. The solution to the problems in the Middle East are not to be found in Zionism. The solution to the problems in Syria has nothing to do with the differing psychologies which produce competing idealist and realist theories of international relations. And no amount of determinist scapegoating by the repressive, communist government in China is going to address the actual problem in Syria.
In every case, the fundamental problem is the lack of freedom. Zionism has to deny freedom to others in order to preserve itself. The Alawites in Syria have to deny freedom to others in order to keep their minority control over the majority population. Marx’s well known lack of concern for freedom and justice in communist theory will never be able to tolerate ‘regime change,’ whenever such a change will result in more freedom for the people under that changed government.
Peretz’s Zionism and Kissinger’s real politik and China’s communism are all monistic, and the philosophy of monism is ‘peace.’ In contrast, the philosophy of pluralism is ‘freedom.’ As Kant pointed out 200 years ago, there will never be a world at peace until there is a world that is free.[Email comments welcome: duoism(at)sbcglobal.net]