Published October 16, 2023
The predictably equivocal, even positive response from many on the political left to Hamas’s attack on Israel offers a fascinating glimpse into the strange fate of progressive politics in the West. Indeed, if Karl Marx were alive today, he would no doubt be utterly confused by those like the left-wing journalist Rivkah Brown who now claim to speak for the oppressed and extol the necessity of bloodshed for revolution while sipping their carbon-neutral lattes in London or Manhattan.
Marx was a critic of capitalism, but he was also clear that it was a dramatic improvement on the feudalism and religiously controlled world that preceded it. Thus, even somebody with a Wikipedia-level knowledge of Marxist thought should know that, in any war between capitalists and those committed to an old-style feudalism, reinforced with an intolerant religious ideology, the supporters of liberation should back the former. Israel may not be the end of history, but for a Marxist, it is closer to that goal than those who look to Iran as the model for society. Thus, when those on the left back Hamas over Israel, they expose their real commitments: They simply hate the West upon which they are parasitically dependent.
Carl R. Trueman is a fellow in EPPC’s Evangelicals in Civic Life Program, where his work focuses on helping civic leaders and policy makers better understand the deep roots of our current cultural malaise. In addition to his scholarship on the intellectual foundations of expressive individualism and the sexual revolution, Trueman is also interested in the origins, rise, and current use of critical theory by progressives. He serves as a professor at Grove City College.