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Love and Treason

Love and Treason table of contents

The Anarchist Stuart Christie and his Peculiar Literary Bedfellow, the Neo-Conservative Stephen Schwartz

THE ANARCHISTS AND SPAIN: "COULDA, WOULDA, SHOULDA..."

In 1964, a courageous young Scottish anarchist named Stuart Christie was arrested in Spain for taking part in an effort to assasinate dictator Francisco Franco. If the attempt on Franco's life had succeeded it would have been one of the most emotionally satisfying political killings of the 20th century. But alas, like many earlier efforts against the Generalissmo this attempt failed, and Christie's role in this failure had several aspects. First, shortly before going to Spain, Christie participated in a television inteview where he made it clear he thought killing Franco would be desirable. Along with the obvious lack of discretion demonstrated by Christie, it later turned out the journalist interviewing Christie, Malcolm Muggeridge, had been involved with British intelligence services during World War Two. This compounded the fact that it was neither the time nor the place for Christie to voice his fiery sentiments.

Christie's second bad judgement call was that he tried to transport the explosives to be used in the anti-Franco effort while hitchhiking, and did some of his hitchhiking while wearing a kilt. Under the circumstances, hitchhiking might or might not have been a good way to transport explosives. The problem then becomes a sartorial one, so let's put this one in our live-and-learn file; if you are carrying high explosives to be used in an attempt on the life of a head of state, and you are male, and you decide to hitchhike, you may wish to refrain from wearing a plaid skirt while doing so, especially while crossing the rural regions of a socially reactionary Catholic police state.

These events took place in 1964. We all make mistakes. It would be churlish of me to bag on a man who is now in his sixties for mistakes made in a good effort in his long-ago youth. However, Stuart Christie's ability to look before he leaps has not noticibly improved in the years since the failed attempt to take the Generalissimo out of the box, and his lousy judgment-making skills are now on proud display in his choice of contributers for his literary journal 'Arena Two: Noir Fiction,' edited by Stuart Christie, and published by PM Press.

"Arena Two: Noir Fiction" features three pieces by a minor league neo-conservative war propagandist named Stephen Schwartz. (three, count 'em, three; Christie's cup runneth over a bit here.) A professional repentant former leftist turned fan of the Nicaraguan Contras, and more recently an apologist for Uzbek's murderous dictator Islam Karimov, Schwartz also styles himself as one of the world's leading authorities on the Spanish Revolution and Civil War. Schwartz's role in 'Arena Two: Noir Fiction" is touted in neutral terms as examining "the relationship between surrealism and anarchism." Indeed, "noir fiction" and "surreal" are words that easily attach themselves to the life and deeds of 'Arena Two: Noir Fiction' contributor Stephen Schwartz.

Schwartz was raised in San Francisco as a self-proclaimed "red diaper baby" in the milieu of the pro-Soviet Union Communist Party U.S.A. In his youth he experienced a suspiciously Oedipal-sounding rebellion against the C.P. and became a Trotskyist. Schwartz also styled himself as a later-day surrealist poet, did some heavy-duty hanging out in the late 1970's to early 1980's punk rock scene of San Francisco's North Beach neighborhood, and wrote articles in the SF punk newspaper 'Search and Destroy' under the name Nico Ordway. For several years he was also a one-man ultra-left Trotskyist organization with the grandiose name of 'Fomento Obrero Revolucionario Organizing Committee in the US.' In this context he published a sort of fanzine-to-himself called 'The Alarm.' Schwartz wrote in it under the names 'Comrade Sandalio' and 'S.Solsona,' perhaps attempting to cloak himself in a dashing air of mystery and adventure that was otherwise out of reach for an obnoxious, overweight, foul-mouthed cafe habitué who couldn't get dates with hot young punk rock chicks.

Schwartz was widely derided by those who encountered him in the flesh. Anarchist writer Bob Black dissed him in a 1982 leaflet as a "tendentious pedant" and "an after hours militant with nothing to say in six languages." After meeting him in person, his ostensible comrades in France and Spain declared that they had "broke all relations" ("...rompemos toda relacion con ellos.") with his one-person "group" in the May 1982 issue of their publication 'Alarma.' (1) Another acquaintance from that time, John Zerzan, has said of Schwartz: "...he always struck me as a pretty ridiculous character. He went from Stalinist to Trot to `Surrealist Trot' to what he called `very close to classical anarchist,' and given his flakiness it didn't seem to matter nor did it seem like it would surprise me whatever turn he would take. Now I know this sounds like a claim to omniscience, but he always struck me as an unstable case who could end up anywhere!...he made himself a joke by trying to recruit San Francisco punks - who all laughed at him while spending his money..." (2)

THE POETASTER'S DISHONOR...

By the end of Ronald Reagan's first term Schwartz stopped publishing 'The Alarm' and quickly became a neo-conservative. This coincided with a massive improvement in his job prospects. Schwartz went from being a guy who had recently made a living driving a cab to employment as an editor at a San Francisco-based, Reagan Adminstration-affiliated think tank called the Institute for Contemporary Studies. This was a rare charitable indulgence on the part of the Reagan right, since at the time of his hiring Schwartz didn't have an undergraduate degree and had never been involved in anything more politically consequential than sharing his opinions about anarchism, Trotskyism and the Spanish Civil War in a loud voice in bars.

``...ICS (the Institute for Contemporary Studies) was launched in 1974, during the waning days of Governor Ronald Reagan's Administration, by Edwin Meese III and other close Reagan associates...Defending America, a 1977 ICS title with an introduction by former Secretary of Defense James Schlesinger, built an early case that the Soviets had opened a `window of vulnerability' in U.S. nuclear defenses...ICS, which receives the bulk of its funding from corporations such as Bechtel, Chevron, IBM and Chase Manhattan Bank (also Alcoa, Union Carbide, Coors, Exxon, and the Hearst Corporation, at that time the owner of the San Francisco Examiner) and from key right-wing fundraisers like Richard Mellon Scaife, has been called `Reagan's favorite think tank.''' (3)

In his role as an editor at the Institute for Contemporary Studies, the newly-minted-former "Comrade Sandalio" of the 'Fomento Obrero Revolucionario Organizing Committee' worked enthusiastically to help create a favorable public relations climate for US-backed counterinsurgency efforts in Central America. Among tasks he performed in this vein was to help organize materials for a book published by ICS Press titled 'The Grenada Papers.' Published shortly before the 1984 US elections, 'The Grenada Papers' was a collection of internal documents of the 'New Jewel Movement,' the leftist regime that had governed the Carribean island of Grenada and self-destructed shortly before the 1983 American invasion and occupation of Grenada. The documents had been seized and analyzed by the CIA and Air Force Intelligence in the wake of the US invasion and then forwarded to the Institute for Contemporary Studies. Edited by University of California-Berkeley Professors Paul Seabury and Walter McDougall, the book extolled the US invasion as the first time a so-called Communist regime had been overthrown by democratic forces, and the book was structured to justify the invasion of Grenada to an audience mostly made up of the staffers of stupid American congressmen. 'The Grenada Papers' demonized by association the Sandinista regime in Nicaragua and leftist guerrilla movements in El Salvador and Guatemala. The editors' key point was that leftist insurgencies in the Caribbean and Central America were pawns of Soviet foreign policy and a dire strategic threat to the United States (we should have been so lucky). Events in Grenada were presented as an argument for increased aggression by the US government in Central America.

Schwartz wrote introductions to sections of the book in which the ``Left-wing'' West German Social Democrats were taken to task for not being sufficiently supportive of US defense goals.

'The Grenada Papers' was published in the fall of 1984. In the Fall 1984 issue of the ICS's 'Journal of Contemporary Studies,' Schwartz called attention to his participation in a presentation based on the materials in 'The Grenada Papers' before an "Outreach group on Central America" at the Reagan White House on Oct. 31, 1984.

In the same period, in a letter to the contemporary version of the Industrial Workers of the World dated October 24, 1984, Schwartz eulogized a recently deceased Marxist member of the current-day version of the IWW, Ed Spira, saluting Spira as a ``working class warrior.'' Schwartz signed his letter by name and by his IWW membership number, X333361.

Schwartz was also available for perfomances as an "expert" on Central America extolling the upside of a possible US invasion of Nicaragua at neo-conservative conferences.

An article by Sara Diamond in the March 5, 1985 issue of The Daily Californian, a University of California campus-oriented newspaper in Berkeley, reported that the Institute for Contemporary Studies hosted a $165-a-seat public policy conference early in 1985 at the Mark Hopkins Hotel in San Francisco. About 80 academics, business leaders and intelligence analysts attended this gathering. Reagan's attorney general, champion of the death penalty and W.C. Fields look-alike Edwin Meese delivered a speech lauding the virtues of the Reagan economic program. Other topics at this conference included education, Grenada, Nicaragua, and ``The Future of the Soviet Empire.''

Quoting from The Daily Californian article: ```I think...Nicaragua could easily become Grenada Two,' said Stephen Schwartz...The `lesson of Grenada,' he said, is that in `certain of the Soviet satellites...there are gigantic possibilities of internal instability and collapse.'

``U.C. Berkeley political science professor Paul Seabury, who edited The Grenada Papers along with Schwartz and U.C. Berkeley history professor Walter McDougall, said the documents provide analysts with a rare opportunity to study Soviet `proxy operations'. ``While he said he's not advocating any particular action, Seabury said that `as a scholar, I would just love to see the Managua documents.'''

Participating in this conference didn't prevent Schwartz from taking out an ad calling attention to his membership in the current-day version of the IWW on page 11 of the May 1985 issue of the IWW newspaper, 'Industrial Worker.'

On the editorial page of the San Francisco Examiner, April 11, 1986, an opinion piece by Schwartz was published under the title ``Support Contras:"' ``We helped bring down Somoza, and we donated more aid to the Sandinista regime, at first, than we gave Somoza in 20 years. But the new regime from the beginning treated us as `the Yankees, enemies of humanity'....'' Schwartz used the plural-possessive-"we" form almost once for every sentence here, and claimed that if ``we'' of the United States government didn't aid the Nicaraguan Contras, the Sandinistas would overrun Guatemala and Mexico and threaten the United States the way the Germans did to France in 1940.

PEEK-A-BOO, I-SEE-YOU...

The following year, Schwartz bragged on a television news broadcast that he used his insider knowledge as a former long-time leftist to spy on opponents of US policies in Central America, and feed information on them to the Feds.

On Thursday November 10, 1987, San Francisco's KRON-TV Channel 4, broadcast a report titled ``Private Spies,'' on its 6pm ``Evening Edition.''

The following is from a transcript:

Sylvia Chase (anchor on set): People and groups who speak out against Reagan administration policies put themselves in jeopardy of surveillance by private intelligence gathering organizations.

Target 4 has learned it's a kind of private spying network: conservative groups, with close ties to the White House. Members say they pass on the information that they collect to federal agencies, like the Justice Department. And on occasion to the White House itself...

...When Congress blocked aid to the Contras, the White House got around the law by turning to a private network to raise the money. That triggered the Iran-Contra scandal...

...Now, there's evidence of another private network. This one spies on the President's political opponents...

...Here's how it works. Around the country, people gather information on left-wing activities and funnel it to private conservative groups...like the Council for Inter-American security, the Capital Research Center, the Young America's Foundation, and the Institute for Contemporary Studies.

All have close ties to the Reagan Administration.

Stephen Schwartz (Institute for Contemporary Studies): We'll be seeing all of the NSC (National Security Council) people, I'm sure. I'll be seeing all of the NSC people.

Sylvia Chase: Stephen Schwartz is a member of what he calls the commie-watching network.

He works at the Institute for Contemporary Studies, a San Francisco think-tank founded by top Reagan aids like Ed Meese.

Schwartz says he addressed a White House meeting attended by Oliver North and even met former CIA director, William Casey. Schwartz says there are lots of ways to get information.

Schwartz: When a left-wing group publishes, say a list of its state committee and throws it in the garbage and somebody finds it in the garbage and brings it to me, then I know the names of all those people and sometimes there will be more information, too.

Chase: What techniques are being used today...going through the garbage. That's one way.

Schwartz: Going through garbage.

Chase: Lifting things off the desk when no one's looking.

Schwartz: Now, that's something which is something that I don't believe in. But that's not fair.

Chase: But you know that it happens?

Schwartz: Yeah. I do know that it happens.

Chase: What other techniques would people use?

Schwartz: Well, if any leftist group has an open office where there are a lot of people around, you know you can walk in and if there's something lying on a desk, you don't have to filch it. You might just write down what's on it...see a list of names or something like that.

Chase: Are there other people like you around the country keeping track?

Schwartz: There are people that are collecting information. Yes.

Chase: And are they able to get it to people in government?

Schwartz: Yes. But the people in the government are not, frankly, able to do anything more with it than simply collect the information and keep track of the information..."

Schwartz's tenure with the Institute for Contemporary Studies hinged on his ability to pontificate soulfully about the evils of Communism. But after the collapse of the Soviet Union this extremely narrow field of specialization was past its sell-by date. Without Stalinism, Schwartz was left without anything to not believe in. His bosses were probably tired of Schwartz running around their offices hollering about the latest developments in the feud between Trotsky and Stalin, anyway, so the ICS fobbed off the now otherwise unemployable Schwartz on an accomdating San Francisco Chronicle, wher he was assigned the lowly task of helping write obituaries.

Imagine the letdown. He'd gone from huffing and puffing in the pages of 'The Alarm' about the left communist critique of labor unions, which he didn't have the intellectual chops to grasp in the first place, to shaking hands with the famous Oliver North and CIA Chief William Casey in President Reagan's White House. Punk rockers, anarchists and ultra-leftists had all "laughed at him while spending his money," but with the sinister and cynical neo-cons the porcine pedant had finally found a place at the table. Now he was marooned scribbling obits at the 'Chron,' a sarcastic tribute to his previous pencil-pushing efforts to help keep Nicaraguan cemeteries supplied wholesale with the corpses of the working poor. He'd even become the butt of humorous derisive local news coverage when he was ticketed by police for writing graffiti claiming that he was not the philosophical whore of North Beach. (4) His life must have seemed like a great gaping vacuity, now that this guy with a Trotsky fixation no longer had great and sanguinary events to attach himself to and powerful men to fawn over.

TO THE BALKANS..."AT LEAST IN SARAJEVO THEY CAN'T CALL ME 'THE PHILOSOPHICAL WHORE OF NORTH BEACH' -- IN SARAJEVO THERE'S NO BEACH..."

In the 1990's the former Yugoslavia became a focus of US national security concerns. Weary of his sinecure at the Chronicle, and drawn irresistibly to the smell of human blood being shed in copious quantities, Steve Schwartz now remade himself as an "expert" on the Balkans. As a part of this Schwartz gave himself a complete fashion makeover. He grew a long beard, started sporting a skull-cap, and relocated to Sarajevo, Bosnia, where he converted to the Sufi branch of Islam and changed his name -- at least for the duration of direct U.S. military intervention in the Balkans -- to Suleyman Ahmad Stephen Schwartz.

The newly-minted Suleyman Ahmad Schwartz appiled the cheerleading moves he'd honed on behalf of the Nicaraguan Contras to the Bosnian Muslim President Alija Izetbegovic, describing him as "an authentic warrior in a legitimate jihad," and on return to the U.S. Schwartz was a militant propagandist for U.S. miltary involvement in the war in Bosnia and Kosovo.

The September 11th 2001 blowback from former Presidents Carter and Reagan's foreign policy antics in Afghanistan gave Ahmad Suleyman Schwartz new opportunities to exercise his brand of journalism, penning pompous pro-war pronunciamentos in such venues as William Kristol's 'The Weekly Standard' and the 'Wall Street Journal.' Hired in July 2001 and fired in June 2002 from a job as a journalist with the Voice of America, Schwartz found a more suitable and secure position as a "Senior Policy Analyst" at a small, Washington DC-based pro-war lobby called the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies.

In his role as an apparent convert to Islam, Schwartz wrote a book titled (without apparent conscious ironic intent) 'The Two Faces of Islam.' Schwartz and his 'Two Faces' elicited a brief, scathing and dismissive review from leading U.S. anthropologist Clifford Geertz in the July 3, 2003 isue of 'The New York Review of Books:'

"Stephen Schwartz, who has also run into political difficulties in the capital, and stirred thereby a teacup-storm on the right, is a strange and outlandish figure. He grew up in San Francisco as part of the City Lights literary crowd around Lawrence Ferlinghetti, whom his father had published; he became a so-far-left-he's-right Trotskyist-anarchist under the nom de guerre "Comrade Sandallo," (sic) worked for a while as an obituary writer and street reporter for The San Francisco Chronicle, shifted his affections and his energies to Reagan during the micro-war in Grenada, and ultimately made his way as a freelance journalist to Sarajevo in the 1990s, where he converted to Islam and joined a Naqshabandi Sufi order. He changed his name again, at least for some purposes, to Suleyman Abmad, (sic) and found the Medusa's head every conspiratorialist needs: "Wahabism."

Geertz notes of Schwartz, "whose rhetoric has survived his allegiances," that in his "Two Faces:"

"His book consists in a monomaniacal tracing out, laborious and repetitive (the word "wahhabi" or "wahabbism" appears in almost every paragraph), of the thousands of ways, ingenious, insidious, and implacably relentless, in which the machinations of the House of Saud in the service of this mad creed reaches out to poison the souls of Muslims, turn them against one another, against us, against everybody. Mobilizing their petro-dollars to found religious schools all over the world, set up popular-front-type propaganda foundations, finance lobbying efforts, bribe the powerful, infiltrate legitimate organizations, recruit supporters, eliminate enemies, and most especially to finance jihad, terrorism, and the destruction of Israel, the Saudis work tirelessly to turn Islam, in its essence a peaceful, mystical, unifying force "preaching love and healing," into a world-dividing, world-destroying "two-faced" one.

"There is, of course, more than a grain of truth in this, as there is in any comprehensive indictment of faction-ridden politics, and the Saudi factions, like the Ayatollahs, Hamas, Syria, and Mubarak are, surely, playing for keeps. But Schwartz's discussion (he has virtually nothing to say about the concrete details of intra-Islamic conflict and, except for the Koran, he does without source references) is a prime example of how to transform an arguable argument into an obsessional fantasy:

(Schwartz:) "With the collapse of the Soviet State, Wahhabism effectively replaced the Communist movement as the main sponsor of ideological aggression against the democratic West.... The ideological division of humanity into "two worlds" has been promulgated on different bases: Wahhabism applied a religious distinction, Communism a class standard, and Nazism a racial criterion.... Wahhabism, like the other totalitarian ideologies... compelled members of the new middle classes in the Saudi kingdom and the Gulf states to eagerly kill and die, rather than to procreate and live.... The conduct of the Saudis was devious. They assured the West of profound affection, while fomenting worldwide adventurism and seeking to bring every Sunni Muslim on the face of the earth under their control.... The Wahhabi-Saudi regime...embodies a program for the ruthless conquest of power and a war of extermination.... [Its] face...is a great deal uglier than that of a general Islamism, or radical Arab nationalism,...or even of Soviet Communism, and its threat to the peace of the world is immensely greater..." (5)

Geertz gets some of the chronology regarding Schwartz's gyrations wrong, but his insight into the hollow core of this man of 'ressentiment' is on target.

As someone else has noted elsewhere:

"While every noble morality develops from a triumphant affirmation of itself, slave morality from the outset says No to what is "outside," what is "different," what is "not itself: and this No is its creative deed. This inversion of the value-positing eye -- this need to direct one's view outward instead of back to oneself -- is of the essence of 'ressentiment:' in order to exist, slave morality always first needs a hostile external world; it needs, phisiologically speaking, external stimuli in order to act -- its action is fundamentally reaction." (6)

THE FOUNDATION FOR THE DEFENSE OF DEMOCRACIES THAT BOIL PEOPLE TO DEATH...

In his job at the Foundation, Schwartz went to bat for the torturer tyrant of Uzbekistan, Islam Karimov. Karimov is a former Soviet apparatchik reborn in the post-USSR era as a love child of the Israeli and United States National Security establishments. This ex-Stalinist thug turned pro-US thug's contribution to the annals of early 21st century human rights abuses is a penchant for having prisoners killed by scalding them to death.

Right-wing libertarian Justin Raimondo of 'Antiwar.com' noted:

"Uzbekistan, land of torture, where opponents of the barbaric regime are routinely jailed, beaten and murdered -- you woudn't think that Uzbek "President" Islam Karimov would have any Western defenders. But, then, you probably weren't taking ex-leftist-turned-Muslim Stephen Schwartz into account.

"The fifty-something "senior policy analyst" for the ironically-named Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, a rabid war bird formerly with the Voice of America, doesn't have much of a problem with Uzbekistan's estimated 600 political arrests per year and some 6,500 political prisoners -- many of whom face death by torture.

Praising Uzbekistan in a speech as "a new, young, transitional democracy,' Schwartz explained:

"I cannot claim to provide a full endorsement of the Uzbek regime without going there. Obviously, as in any country, there have been abuses. However, I note that much of the discussion of Uzbekistan and the claims of Islamic figures in that country to being victims of repression, rests on extremely vague terminology. For example, the latest U.S. State Department report on human rights abuses around the world was released on March 4. It includes numerous allegations against Uzbekistan, many involving the government's struggle to suppress Hizb-ut-Tahrir - a clandestine subversive movement originating in Arab countries. This is a battle in which the United States should probably be cheering Karimov on, rather than condeming him."

Raimondo went on to write:

"According to a forensic report compiled last summer by the British embassy in Uzbekistan, two prisoners of this 'transistional democracy' were boiled to death. Their screams were not too audible in the West, drowned out, perhaps, by Schwartz's cheers and the support of the U.S. government. American taxpayers sheleld out $500 million in direct aid to Uzbekistan, $79 million of which went directly into the pockets of the torturers, i.e. the police and intelligence apparatus.

"Apologizing for torture, murder and the parboiling of human beings -- for the man they call "the philosophical whore of North Beach," it's all in a day's work..." (7)

Another useful source on Uzbekistan and its US-backed despot is found on the blog of Craig Murray, British Ambassador to Uzbekistan from 2002 to 2004.

An article of June 2005 says of Islam Karimov:

"...This dictator simply tolerates no opposition. And he expresses his lust for blood quite openly. Of political opponents, Karimov has said, “Such people must be shot in the forehead.” And more: “If necessary, I’ll shoot them myself.” On another occasion, he averred: “I’m prepared to rip off the heads of 200 people, to sacrifice their lives, in order to save peace and calm in the republic…. If my child chose such a path, I myself would rip off his head.”

"...Uzbekistan currently serves Washington in a more sinister way: it is believed to be one of the destination countries for the highly secretive “renditions program,” in which the CIA ships suspected terrorists to third-party countries where abusive interrogation methods are employed that are illegal in the United States. Essentially, the “renditions program” is the conscious and deliberate outsourcing of torture...As the London Times put it: “The CIA would not shop anywhere else, which is why a mysterious Gulfstream 5 executive jet routinely delivers terrorist subjects from Afghanistan [to Uzbekistan] for interrogation and, perhaps, percolation.”

"...Perhaps the greatest American apologist for Uzbekistan’s tyrant has been Stephen Schwartz, a onetime member of the neocon Foundation for the Defense of Democracies who is most celebrated for his purple prose advocating regime change in Saudi Arabia...As he wrote in the neocon journal The Weekly Standard in 2002, the situation in Uzbekistan was about as good as it could get.

"Explaining away the grisly record of the Karimov regime, Schwartz asserted that “before freedom can be established, the enemies of freedom must be defeated. The fate of democracies that do not defeat the enemies of democracy is illustrated by the histories of Germany and Italy after the First World War. Democracies can grant mercy to their enemies only from a position of unchallengeable strength...Since September 11, the United States no longer accepts the claim that the free exercise of terrorist agitation, incitement, and organization outweighs the benefits of legal sanction,” Schwartz wrote.

(Schwartz, quoted in Murray,) "The United States, which has entered into a military alliance with Uzbekistan, must support the Uzbeks in their internal as well as their external combat, and must repudiate the blandishments of the human rights industry.” (8)

As Justin Raimondo has noted in a number of grim, humorous and on-target columns about the sordid and clownish Suleyman/Sandalio/Schwartz:

"Here is someone whose long march through the ideologies started out on the far-left fringe of Trotskyism -- as "Comrade Sandalio," he was the leader (and sole member) of the 'Fomento Obrero Revolucionario' of the United States (FOCUS) -- and who wound up on the opposite shore, where he became "Suleyman Ahmad," the Jewish convert to Islam and a self-described "New Age rightist."

"No matter what sort of idelogical drag he turns up in, however, Schwartz always sings essentially the same song. During his travels through the Balkans, he teamed up with Albania Catholics, whom he claimed were "Threated by Christian Orthodox Imperialism -- 'Yugoslav,' Macedonian, Greek." Clinton had barely begun bombing some of the oldest cities in Europe when Schwartz popped up on Bay Area television cheerleading the Kosovo war. Now the enemy is Wahabism, instead of Orthodoxy, but it's the same old story: the US must conduct a religious war to suit Schwartz's latest persona -- whatever that is...

"...From the sectarian politics of the left-communist fringe to the halls of the Institute for Contemporary Studies and on to the Voice of America, this chameleon has changed his spots several times over, but always, you'll note, in search of a job. The only problem is that he has to blot out half his resume in search of the next one.

"Aside from opportunism, however, there is an ideological theme to Schwartz's recent career: Wherever there is a war, there is Stephen Schwartz, hovering vulture-like, demanding an escalation of the conflict. From the class war, to the Kosovo war, to the "war on terrorism," the war-bird Schwartz pops up on every battlefield, like some macabre jack-in-the-box..." (9)

And in "Portrait of a War Bird..."

"...Busy, busy, busy, and always in the service of conflict...there is Stephen Schwartz, circling over the battlefield and feeding off the carnage. Caw! Caw! Caw!" (10)

TO BE CONTINUED...

Arena Two: Noir Fiction. Stuart Christie, editor. Publisher: PM Press.
Publication Date: 2/1/2011 ISBN: 9781604862140

Footnotes to Part One:

(1) "Vista la actitud del unico militante de FOCUS que concemos y que es plenamente apoyado por otros miembro (hasta ahora desconocides) de este grupo rompemos toda relacion con ellos."

("In view of the attitude of the only militant of FOCUS that we know of and who is plainly supported by the other members of this group (who we know nothing about) we totally break all relations with them.") ALARMA #13, May 1982.

"This group has never contained (till our break up with it) anyone but Sandalio, as far as we know."

(Correspondance of FOR with Morgan Miller of Portland, Oregon, dated 9-12-83.

ALARME: (write without mentioning the name)
BP 329
75624 Paris Cedex 13 FRANCE

FOR is, or was, a small left communist tendency in France and Spain, founded in 1958 by a group including Benjamin Peret and Grandizo Munis. The FOR originated in the Trotskyist movement after World War Two. For more on ther origins, see footnote #3 in my article 'From Munis to Meese,...' cited below.

Copies of FOR materials available from me, at proletaire2003@yahoo.com

(2) Letter of John Zerzan to the Detroit, Michigan anarchist newspaper the 'Fifth Estate', Nov.12, 1985

(3) ``Buttoned-Down Bohemians - Welcome to San Francisco's New Age Right.'' 'Image' magazine, San Francisco Examiner, Sunday August 3, 1986

(4) "When “New Age Rightist” Stephen Schwartz discovered graffiti calling him “the philosophical whore of North Beach,” the former Trotskyite turned red with rage. He uncapped his felt-tipped pen and was printing a reply to the scurrilous scribblings when he was busted by Mayor Feinstein's anti-graffiti police squad on a charge of malicious mischief, defacing the wall of a Vallejo Street construction site.

Schwartz...has demanded a trial to exonerate his exercise of free speech.

“I was just going to answer that I was not the philosophical whore of North Beach,” said Schwartz, 37.

If he wants a trial, he can have it, said Assistant District Attorney Joseph Hoffman, who believes citizens have the right to speak out under the First Amendment — but with limits.

“The remedy is that he can stand on a street corner and yell all he wants that he's not the philosophical whore of North Beach,” Hoffman said. “But he can't go around defacing other people's property.”

('A Battle Over Right to Write.' He wanted to rebut graffiti with graffiti

by Dennis J. Opatrny, of the Examiner staff. 'San Francisco Examiner', May 7, 1987.)

(5) Clifford Geertz, "Which Way to Mecca." 'New York Review of Books,' Volume 50, Number 11, July 3, 2003

(6) Frederich Nietzsche. "On the Geneology of Morals," Translated by Walter Kaufmann and R.J. Hollingdale. Vintage Books/Random House, 1967. 36.

(7) Justin Raimondo, "Wackos, Weirdos and Wingdings. The War Party -- a scary, ugly lot." 'Antiwar.com,' June 2, 2003. http://www.antiwar.com/justin/j060203.html

(8) Stephen J. Snikgoski, "Idealistic democracy, total hypocrisy, and Israel: America's man in Uzbekistan." June 22, 2005. http://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2005/06/idealistic_demo_1/

Posted on the blog of Craig Murray, former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan.

Quote of tough guy Schwartz dismissing "the blandishments of the human rights industry" regarding systematic police rapes, torture, and boiling people to death is from Schwartz, "Defending Freedom from Islamist Terror," 'Weekly Standard,' July 19, 2003. http://archive.frontpagemag.com/readArticle.aspx?ARTID=17163

(9) Justin Raimondo, "The VOA Folies -- 'Voice of America' loses a writer -- and the War Party gains a martyr." 'Antiwar.com,' July 5, 2002. http://www.antiwar.com/justin/j070502.html

(10) Justin Raimondo, "Portrait of a War Bird -- 10 questions for 'the philosophical whore of North Beach." 'Antiwar.com,' Dec.6, 2002. http://www.antiwar.com/justin/j120602.html

See also my article, 'From Munis to Meese: Left Communism or State Department Surrealism', (http://www.infoshop.org/myep/munis_meese.html) based on my encounters with Steve Schwartz in the final stages of his 'Comrade Sandalio' song and dance routine in the summer and fall of 1984.

Kevin Keating
June 2011
San Francisco USA
e-mail: proletaire2003@yahoo.com