Our Collective Death Wish

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I’m more and more inclined to think we’re programmed to self-destruct, to commit collective suicide. Maybe we’re picking up signals from all the other life forms on this planet–realizing how much better they’d be without us… we’re on a mission, a collective death-drive. Almost did it once.. but then, backed off… maybe it was too obvious… i mean, the Cuban Missile Crisis. So now we have… global warming, where we can blame it on ‘Nature” (whatever the fuck that is).. .and meanwhile, exhibit our symptoms … like Israel in Gaza. “Warning signs” … that no one wants to read, and if anyone does… no one has the number of the suicide hot line.

History affords us nothing toward understanding what we are, what we might be–only what we have been. I’m thinking of the bloodletting in Gaza, and the larger conflict of which it’s a part.

The antithetical interests, wishes, needs of the parties involved, the real suffering, deaths, lives, the terrible losses, the fears & ambitions real & imagined are of the here and now, creating the here & now of the future, immediate & remote, because if there’s any ‘history’ existing now—that’s the one, the one that belongs to the future, and maybe the only way to get to the present is to get free of history—or rather, of the tangled, mutilated, psychotic pseudo-histories that pass as explanations, rationalizations, justifications—because, lets get this straight—history is not capable of explaining anything but…. history: what has already happened, done, achieved, been explained already a thousand times before. History can do only that: explain & re-explain itself, but it will not, cannot, explain us to ourselves, cannot explain who & what we are–& least of all, what we want. What we really desire. For that, we tell stories.

Stories we give the name of ‘history,’ call ‘history.’ But are not, history. they are stories—stories of how the Zionists colonized Palestine (named for a Roman colony), & drove the residents by FORCE from their homeland; stories of how the Jews of Europe, despairing of there ever being an end to the pogroms, persecution, humiliations inflicted on them by Christian Europe, came up with the idea that a dream of a place of their own might be real if only they would find the courage to FORCE it into reality; stories of how that dream became a nightmare of bloodletting & terror & dislocation & generation upon generation of refugee camps; stories of Jews who had lived for millennia across North Africa (since Spain kicked them out in 1492 as Columbus set sail on his mission to colonize the Americas), across what archaeologists felicitously called ‘The Fertile Crescent,’ (fertile creation of Empires conquests exiles and colonization), & were in turn driven from their homes, seeking refuge in Israel (becoming the most militantly anti-Arab class in their new homeland); stories of how the international anti-communist, capitalist class, with blessing and billions from the U.S, would use and exploit all of this to turn what had at least begun as a small socialist state into an American land based aircraft carrier in the Middle East & one of the most economically un-equal of all the developed nations—and that, not even counting the Arab & non-Jewish residents.

The stories go on. Sound & fury… fog & tear gas to cover the human reality, the mothers wailing for their children, the olive trees… my god, the olive trees! The living soul of the land itself—outliving generations, sustaining generations—bulldozing the olive orchards, building obscene walls, the buses exploding on busy streets, the real needs, wishes, aspirations of living people…

… of all those stories, that a careful understanding of history—history that cannot explain or justify or rationalize—but only struggle to point out what ‘is’.. .the helpless infant truth we would, if only we could, believe in… of all those stories, the one common element…

FORCE, as Simone Weil understands it in her essay on The Iliad, The Poem of Force.

The FORCE that belies, that lies, that turns all it touches into ‘things’, the tool that turns the user into the very thing they most hate & fear.

FORCE—which weaves for us, stories in the shape of the wish that lies within us, the wish for Death… for collective suicide.

… and who, who will rise up to tell us … to begin to tell us… stories for Life? And who will have the power to overcome…

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