Friday, July 23, 2010

Subversive Act Of The Day

It's probably not going to be a regular feature, but every once in a while something happens that makes me just want to provide a link to spite someone. Today, that someone is a bunch of numskulls who go by the name Camera, a pro-Israel lobbying group. As Phil Weiss notes:

Another sign of despair, that the battle is now joined inside the castle gates: Israel lobby group Camera is taking on CNN senior Jerusalem correspondent Ben Wedeman, trying to do to him what was done to Octavia Nasr. Seham tells me, "Wedeman has great politics. His reporting on the war on Gaza was the only reporting by the western media that I could watch. I am sure he was expecting this."

Israel lobby targets another CNN correspondent

What was Wedeman guilty of, according to Camera? He linked to, and said something nice about, an article by Juan Cole about relations between Turkey and Israel after the Gaza Flotilla raid:

Whenever a journalist is attacked for referencing an academic, it is an attempt to make that scholar´s work taboo and to forbid its public mention. It would be perfectly all right for an advocacy group to say “In that blog posting, Cole gets the Turkish economy and its impact on relations with Israel wrong for reasons X, Y and Z.¨” But CAMERA did not engage with my substantive points. They simply propagandized.

The Israel Lobbies and Breitbartism: Dirty Tricks, Taboos and the threat to American Democracy

The people who do this sort of thing are despicable. They aren't adding to any discussion about our involvement with Israel and the Middle East; all they're trying to do is make sure that the only voice that's heard is theirs.

I had read this article within a day or two of its having appeared. I had not thought to pass along the link or comment on it, figuring that if people weren't already going to a place that has about a thousand times the traffic this blog does, it wasn't likely I was going to affect that very much. Plus, I really didn't have much to add. But now, I think it's time to quote the thing just to spite those little assholes at Camera. So here are the introductory paragraphs:

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Sunday in Toronto in the wake of the G20 conference that Turkey will no longer routinely give Israeli military aircraft permission to fly in Turkish airspace. The announcement came as Turkey forbade an Israeli military airplane (taking officers on a visit to the sites of Nazi death camps for Jews in Poland) to fly over its territory. The Turkish press denies that the destination of the plane influenced the decision.

Future Israeli military overflight permissions will be granted on an ad hoc basis.

From the Guardian: ‘Israel’s Ynet news website reported that other military flights had also been quietly cancelled. “Turkey is continuing to downgrade its relations with Israel,” an unnamed official told Ynet. “This is a long-term process and not something that began just after the flotilla incident. We are very concerned.” ‘

Turkey Forbids Israeli Military Overflights

Looks good already, doesn't it?

It goes into some detail about recent moves by Turkey to unthaw its relations with some of its neighbors, Iran and Syria in particular. As the quote mentions, relations between Turkey and Israel have been getting worse of late, thanks to the Israelis having boarded and killed some passengers on a Turkish ship that was trying to break through Israel's blockade of the Gaza strip. This is a problem for Israel, because besides the United States and a couple of countries so unimportant I can't even name them at the moment, Israel didn't have a better friend than Turkey. Thanks to their foolishness last month, they now find themselves more alone than ever.

Ultimately, discussing this issue either in the United States or anywhere else besides Turkey and Israel isn't going to make much difference to Israeli security. It does weigh on our decision to support Israel, though, and we need to be able to have knowledgeable, skeptical people like Prof. Cole in that discussion.

UPDATE: I hope other bloggers take up this idea. Letting people like Camera win is going to make our foreign policy decisions worse, not better.

UPDATE 2 (Jul. 25): Finally corrected the title of this article, thanks to Dana Hunter's keen eye. Those wanting to know what a "subsersive" act is will have to go elsewhere - possibly something with a XXX rating.


Expat said...

One of the worst examples of these propagandists at work is over at FDL whenever Leen or Siun has a post bringing attention to some matter that is silenced in the regular media. There are two now lurking laying in wait to spring their disinformation poisons into the issue. One, I refer to as McMossadman has been at this for some time and familiarity has bred contempt which controls the effectiveness achieved. Another, recent stalker, whose handle isn't worth the recall, has joined and the two play off each other, good cop/bad cop routine. All too often between them they are able to hijack the post and pervert the course of conversation there. The ability for the honest discussion has been removed from those postings and since the access to uncontaminated information is sorely lacking in the population, they are able to prevail with their lies. It is a sad commentary on the state of public discourse in the country and the abysmal levels of knowledge demonstrated. When collapse happens, this condition will assure the failure of any attempt to remedy. Sad.

Cujo359 said...

Astroturfers are another class of people who annoy me. There used to be some who showed up here whenever I did an article on terrorism, because it's our duty as citizens to be afraid, very afraid. Then I suspect they figured out that with my traffic, it wasn't worth the effort.

Sometimes, obscurity has its rewards.

Dana Hunter said...

Um, did you mean "subversive"?

Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Cujo359 said...

*head* *desk*

Corrections from readers are always appreciated, and often vitally necessary.