Perhaps the worst part of John Tummon's screed is his defence of a Caliphate that just before it destruction (in 1918-24) had slaughtered over two million Armenians and Chaldeans (i.e. in the Armenian Genocide) and the Assyrian Genocide) and which had sided with the Central Powers (including Germany) in World War One. (Ironically, many of the Armenians were slaughtered in Syria and 25,000 Armenians also fled to Iraq.)
1) There's not much information on John Tummon. According to his own Facebook page, he was educated at Brewood Grammar School and then went on to Birkbeck, University of London. He teaches IB History at a college. (In other words, he's yet another middle-class Marxist academic.) He lives in Manchester.
2) The Left Unity 'amendment' (by John Tummon) itself is astonishing in its historical, political and theological ignorance. However, that ignorance may be willed in that this subject (like so many others) is simply a tool to advance the socialist revolution both (believe it or not) in the Middle East and here in the UK. Thus anything that advances that cause goes: including defending Islamic caliphates, IS and blaming everything (bad) that happens in the Muslim World on “Western imperialism”.
3) One point John Tummon often makes is that IS “has managed to attract substantial support from among Sunni Muslims”. Yes, that's true. And? For a Trotskyist it's strange that he places so much credence on the IS reception amongst fellow Sunnis. (The Nazis gained a lot of support in Germany in the 1920s and 1930s.)
More specifically, Tummon claims that his own group, Left Unity “does not accept the claim that all or most of these people only tolerate IS rule because of extreme coercion”.
4) Since all Westerners are evil (or at least the ones attached - in any way - to “capitalist states” or capitalism generally), then it follows, according to Marxist Manicheanism, that “[h]manitarian war is imperialist war by another name”.
5) John Tummon even accuses the Church of England of indulging in a crusade against IS, despite the C of E's almost complete silence - until relatively recently - on the widespread and massive killing and oppression of Christians in the Muslim world. As Tummon puts it:
“Since the Church of England made the crusading call on Friday, quite deliberately demanding that Christian victims of military attacks by ISIS should be privileged over Muslim ones & asking Christians to ‘prey for the government’...” (August 17)
6) If John Tummon had read more “Western propaganda” (as he calls it) and less Marxist/Trotskyist theory, he would have known that from 2003 onwards it was outside jihadists who were doing there best to create and cause the violence in Iraq. Their violence didn't “emerge” out of anything. They required violence and chaos in order to further their jihadist dream of a Caliphate and full sharia law. It can be argued that if it weren't for outside jihadists (along with Iranian interference), things simply wouldn't have got as bad as they did in Iraq after 2003. Though since Tummon is a (positive/inverse) racist towards all Muslims and a Manichean anti-capitalist, there is no way he could recognise that. It simply must be the case (according to white, middle-class Marxist logic,) that all Muslims are always victims and the evil capitalist West is always and solely responsible for all the wrongs in Iraq (as well as everywhere else for that matter).
7) In an incredible example of Marxist psychological projection, John Tummon even believes that IS
“represents an attempt to break fundamentally with the structure of religiously and ethnically divided nation states imposed on the region by Britain and France at the end of the First World War”.
The willed ignorance here is staggering.
For a start, IS has been one of the keenest supporters of religious division known in recent times. IS has slaughtered Christians, Shia Muslims, Kurds and any other group that deviates in any way from its own Salafist (Sunni) Islam. (There is the problem here in that Tummon believes all negative information about IS is a result of “Western propaganda”.)
The Caliphate IS wants to resurrect - as was the last one - will effectively be a imperialist empire much like the ones that John Tummon is arguing against. It may not be an capitalist imperialist empire; though does that really matter that much in these cases? Will somehow less people be “oppressed”, killed and subdued simply because it's an Islamic imperialist empire rather than a Western capitalist imperialist empire? Is it imperialist empires that socialists like Tummon are against or only Western capitalist imperialist empires? (Millions of communists and progressives supported the Soviet Union's imperialist empire from the early 1920s until, in many cases, after Stalin's death.)
8) John Tummon doesn't believe in what he calls the “atrocity count” approach to what IS is doing. John Tummon puts this point when he says:
“... do you really think we should try to build policy on the basis of the atrocity count? That is the Amnesty International approach, which results in no attempt to analyse cause and effect!... (August 17, 2014)
In other words, it's not important how many people IS kills or subdues, what is important is why the Islamic State is doing this. And, of course, every single violent act by IS - as well as by Muslims across the word - is basically a response to “Western imperialism” or capitalism.
In any case, even the atrocities John Tummon admits to are nonetheless all the fault of Western imperialism and the break up the Caliphate. Thus Tummon fully understands the Islamic State's actions (just as his fellow Leftists justified, rationalised and were even jubilant about the 9/11 attack).
You see, mass murder and mass oppression are okay as long as they aren't capitalist/imperialist mass murder and imperialist/capitalist mass oppression. For dunderheads like John Tummon, it really is that simple.
Remember here that to these Manichean Leftists, capitalism/imperialism is so evil that any action whatsoever taken against it is either legitimate or at the very least understandable.
Of course John Tummon sometimes does have the decency to acknowledge the many “atrocities [IS] has carried out and its attack on the Kurds”. Nevertheless, elsewhere he more or less contradicts this statement. For example, he then talks about the “slimly-substantiated atrocity reports” (August 15th, 2014) against IS.
9) John Tummon's following words - give or take a few - could quite easily have been cut-and-pasted from Hizb ut-Tahrir's website:
“Its call for a Caliphate holds out to Middle Eastern Muslims the promise of a return to something more like the Ottoman Caliphate that preceded western domination and held sway over a vast, complex and diverse empire, home to many ethnicities and faiths.”