Thursday, June 14, 2007

Ignorance Isn't Strength


The Boston Globe is owned by the New York Times, and it shows, in today's beyond-parody editorial on the civil war in Gaza:

The people of Gaza are the true victims of the civil war most of all because the fighting is destroying their future. With the military wing of Hamas poised to seize complete control of Gaza in what Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has rightly called a "coup attempt," Gaza's residents stand to lose whatever hope remained of achieving independence and a decent life in a viable Palestinian state.

The Hamas campaign to eradicate Fatah from Gaza is certainly not the sole cause of Gazans' misery. They long suffered from Israel's suffocating occupation, and then from Ariel Sharon's foolishly unilateral withdrawal in 2005, a move that allowed Hamas to bid for power with the misleading claim that its rockets and suicide bombings had driven Israeli soldiers and settlers out of Gaza. Gazans were victimized as well by the corruption and misrule of Yasser Arafat's Fatah cronies.

In general, I'm a "Popper-ite": scientific truth is what has been "subject to critical testing but (at least after some reasonable interval) cannot be falsified." Political truth is similar: there must be an underlying, valid syllogism--meaning no tautologies or contradictions. And by that test, as Best of the Web's James Taranto observes, the Globe/Times flunks:

According to the Globe, Israel is to blame both for its "occupation" and for having ended it--the latter of which "allowed Hamas to bid for power." But "the people of Gaza" are innocent victims. It somehow escapes the Globe's notice that Hamas came to power because Palestinians voted for it. The Globe denies that Palestinians are responsible for their own actions, and thereby dehumanizes them under a pretense of compassion.

It's also worth noting that the Globe thinks leaving occupied Gaza -- which they favored -- was "foolish" because Israel didn't hold Hamas's hand. This is the left writ large: America and Israel are wrong because. . .they're America and Israel. (And another thing--how did the Israeli pull-out "allow" election of the Palestinian movement not previously part of the government?)

Taranto also points to an article in yesterday's Jerusalem Post about a thwarted "double suicide attack set for Tel Aviv and Netanya last month, orchestrated by Islamic Jihad and meant to be carried out by two Palestinian women, one of them pregnant." Says Taranto:
One wonders how the Globe editorialists would spin this one. Israeli occupation has made it so difficult for Palestinian women to obtain family planning services that some have resorted to desperate measures to exercise their right to choose.
Gives new meaning to "choose life."


The hits just keep coming--headline of a WaPo story today:

Takeover by Hamas Illustrates Failure of Bush's Mideast Vision


As noted by the Squaring the Boston Globe blog, the paper actually praised Israel's Gaza pull-out at the time, arguing the plan had become multi-lateral:

Begun as a unilateral move announced by Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, the step has since attracted a level of coordination that is encouraging on its own terms. Israeli and Palestinian officials have agreed to work out of a joint operations center for the several weeks that the withdrawal is expected to take. In addition, the Palestinian leader, Mahmoud Abbas, has won a commitment from the militant group Hamas to cooperate with the Palestinian Authority during the pullout. Also, Egypt has agreed to have 750 of its police officers guard the border between Gaza and Israel instead of the Israeli Army.

When anti-Israeli bias and 20-20 hindsight converge in the media, all principle is torn asunder.


MaxedOutMama said...

It's sick. Even half the Arabs don't go this far.

So if the Palestinians have autonomy and they screw up, it's Israel's fault?

Carl said...

Agreed. I thought the Globe's editorial the single worst thing ever written on the Israel-Palestine conflict, and the quoted paragraph from Taranto the most incisive critique of the MSM's coverage.