Tariq Ali in Bella Caledonia

Tariq Ali, interviewed by Bella Caledonia.

 

JF:  Scottish Labour politicians claim they speak for internationalism, and often accuse independence supporters of parochialism and petty nationalism.  As an internationalist living in London, why are you supporting independence?

TA: Because I don’t accept the claims of New Labour or their coalition lookalikes that they are the internationalists.  Their internationalism essentially means subordinating the entire British state to the interests of the United States.  They have made Britain into a vassal state: on Iraq, on Afghanistan, on various other things.  This isn’t even a big secret. So I would challenge very strongly any idea that the governments within the British state have been internationalist.  They haven’t been, for a very long time.  That is something that needs to be squashed.

 

The second point is this: an independent Scotland, a small state,  …

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Tariq Ali on Scottish Independence

Tariq Ali’s upcoming series of talks in Scotland on the campaign for a Yes vote in the upcoming Scottish Independence Referendum are being covered across the Scottish media.

Speaking to the Herald, Ali said “”England has been politically petrified since the Thatcher era.” Although the Tories were soundly beaten by New Labour in 1997, Blair was the heir to Thatcher, he says. “An independent Scotland could also lead to something quite new in England; but not something nutty like UKIP.””

Read the interview in full on the Herald website.

Speaking to the Daily Record, he said “My hope is that independence will create spaces of critical thought in England as well as in Scotland because people down here are very depressed and demoralised too.”

Read his interview with the Daily Record in full on their website.

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The AAP is more confusionist than anarchist

The following is an interview with Tariq Ali conducted by the Times of India

 

How do you analyse the AAP phenomenon — is this anarchism entering politics with street protests becoming a popular mode of official expression?

AAP is one of the many parties on the globe that’s benefited from a widespread distrust of politicians and mainstream politics. People feel disenfranchised — whoever rules, their conditions remain the same. In Italy, the Five Star movement stormed into national parliament on a similar basis.

These are effectively single-issue parties. AAP is more confusionist than anarchist. As for elected governments mobilising people on the streets, why not? History is shaped by the nameless masses.

But can AAP, which shifts from leftist resistance against FDI to populist promises of subsidised water and electricity, provide a coherent economic roadmap?

It is contradictory. All  …

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Tariq Ali interviews John Lennon on revolution and politics

In this fascinating interview conducted for Red Mole, Tariq Ali and Robin Blackburn interview John Lennon at his home, discussing Lennon’s political beliefs and ideological attitude. Tariq Ali remembered their meeting for the Guardian, 30 years after Lennon’s assassination, this week in 1980.

The day after the interview he rang me and said he had enjoyed it so much that he’d written a song for the movement, which he then proceeded to sing down the line: Power to the People. The events in Derry on Bloody Sunday angered him greatly and he subsequently suggested that he wished to march on the next Troops Out demonstration on Ireland, and did so, together with Yoko Ono, wearing Red Mole T-shirts and holding the paper high. Its headline was: “For the IRA, Against British Imperialism”.’

The full transcript of the interview can be  …

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México está ‘atado’ para defenderse de espionaje de EU

Ante las revelaciones del espionaje de EU a países como México, el escritor pakistaní Tariq Alí dice en entrevista con Carmen Aristegui que la reacción del gobierno mexicano “es como si estuviese siendo violado en términos de sus políticas, economía que son espiadas y el presidente no dice nada”. El escritor, que participó en la Feria del Libro de la Ciudad de México, recuerda la reacción de la presidenta Dilma Rousseff quien demostró “una reacción de un país soberano e independiente, enojado” con acciones como cancelar su visita de Estado a Washington DC y condenar el espionaje ante la ONU; mientras que la del presidente de México fue la de “un país que depende de EU moralmente, políticamente y psicológicamente”. Read more

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From the archive

  • ‘From the Ashes of Gaza’

    December 30, 2008

    ‘From the Ashes of Gaza’ by Tariq Ali for The Guardian, December 30, 2008

    In the face of Israel’s latest onslaught, the only option for Palestinian nationalism is to embrace a one-state solution

    The assault on Gaza, planned over six months and executed with perfect timing, was designed largely, as Neve Gordon has rightly observed, to help the incumbent parties triumph in the forthcoming Israeli elections. The dead Palestinians are little more than election fodder in a cynical contest between the right and the far right in Israel. Washington and its EU allies, perfectly aware that Gaza was about to be assaulted, as in the case of Lebanon in 2006, sit back and watch.

    Washington, as is its wont, blames the pro-Hamas Palestinians, with Obama and Bush singing from the same AIPAC hymn sheet. The EU  …

  • ‘Thinking of Edward Said’

    December 24, 2007

    ‘Thinking of Edward Said’ by Tariq Ali for Counterpunch, December 24, 2007

    I think of Edward Said often, especially, but not only, when I read of the sordid deals in which the PLO is engaged with Israel and its US backers. I miss Edward’s impetuosity and righteous indignation. He would have had no truck with the shrivelled little Bantustans that the PLO wants to accept and would have morally destroyed the apologists for such a scheme or those intellectual fellow-travellers who think that defending the idea of a secular Palestine means remaining silent on the US-EU embargo on Hamas and who, exhausted by years of struggle and the receipt of handsome cheques from some corrupt NGO, are yearning for an accommodation with the enemy on almost any terms.

    Already in his last writings Edward Said had supported the  …