What our fear of refugees says about Europe

Jacques Lacan claimed that, even if a jealous husband’s claim about his wife – that she sleeps around with other men – is true, his jealousy is still pathological. Why? The true question is “not is his jealousy well-grounded?”, but “why does he need jealousy to maintain his self-identity?”. Along the same lines, one could say that even if most of the Nazi claims about the Jews were true – they exploit Germans; they seduce German[ …]

The spectre of Putogan

The well-coordinated official Turkish campaign against me deserves a short conclusive comment. Some on the Turkish side twisted the New Statesman’s apology for the reference to a fake interview into an apology for (i.e., the revocation of) all the main claims of my text. However, my text published in the NS was not “based” on the fake Andalou interview, it was written and published elsewhere (in Germany) before, without the reference to that fake interview,[ …]

The Cologne attacks were an obscene version of carnival

Who are the “hateful eight” in Quentin Tarantino’s film of the same name? The ENTIRE group of participants – white racists and the black Union soldier, men and women, law officers and criminals – they are all equally mean, brutal and revengeful. The most embarrassing moment in the film occurs when the black officer (played by the superb Samuel L. Jackson) narrates in detail and with obvious pleasure to an old Confederate general how he[ …]

Is something rotten in the state of Turkey?

My short comment on the “war on terror” published online by New Statesman has triggered a series of critical reactions which definitely looks like a well-coordinated campaign, so it deserves a short reply. With regard to the statements quoted in my text and falsely attributed to Hakan Fidan, the head of Turkish intelligence, things are simple and clear. After friends informed me about these statements, I searched for them on the web and found a couple of[ …]

The Need to Traverse the Fantasy

Adam Kotsko, a professor of humanities at Shimer College in Chicago, in an email to me, provided the best characterization of the reactions to my latest text on the refugees and Paris attacks: I notice that the responses always seem to be a referendum on you, almost a Rorschach test for what people think of you. If they think you’re a terrible quasi-fascist, pro-Western ideologue, they find stuff to support that. If they assume you’re[ …]

We need to talk about Turkey

There is something weird about the solemn declarations that we are at war against the Islamic State – all the world’s superpowers against a religious gang controlling a small patch of mostly desert land… This doesn’t mean that we should not focus on destroying Isis, unconditionally, with no “but…”. The only “but” is that we should REALLY focus on destroying it, and for this much more is needed than the pathetic declarations and appeals to[ …]

From ‘Passionate Attachments’ to Dis-Identification

Is this gesture of intentionally and brutally dropping the spectral aura of the traditional femme fatale not another version of the act of une vraie femme? Is not the object which is to her partner “more than himself,” the treasure around which his life turns, the femme fatale herself? By brutally destroying the spectral aura of “feminine mystery,” by acting as a cold manipulating subject interested only in raw sex, reducing her partner to a[ …]

The Paris attacks and a disturbance in a cupola

Yes, the Friday 13th Paris terrorist attacks should be unconditionally condemned, but… no, no alleviating circumstances, it is just that they should be REALLY condemned, for which more is needed than the simple pathetic spectacle of solidarity of all of us (free, democratic, civilized people) against the murderous Muslim Monster. In the first half of 2015, Europe was preoccupied by radical emancipatory movements (Syriza in Greece, Podemos in Spain), while in the second half the[ …]

In the Wake of Paris Attacks the Left Must Embrace Its Radical Western Roots

In the first half of 2015, Europe was preoccupied by radical emancipatory movements (Syriza and Podemos), while in the second half the attention shifted to the “humanitarian” topic of the refugees. Class struggle was literally repressed and replaced by the liberal-cultural topic of tolerance and solidarity. With the Paris terror killings on Friday, November 13, even this topic (which still refers to large socio-economic issues) is now eclipsed by the simple opposition of all democratic[ …]

We Can’t Address the EU Refugee Crisis Without Confronting Global Capitalism

In her classic study On Death and Dying, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross proposed the famous scheme of the five stages of how we react upon learning that we have a terminal illness:denial (one simply refuses to accept the fact: “This can’t be happening, not to me.”); anger(which explodes when we can no longer deny the fact: “How can this happen to me?”);bargaining (the hope we can somehow postpone or diminish the fact: “Just let me live to[ …]