Trust The Guardian, on the eve of the anniversary of the September 11th attacks, to publish what can only be described as an article seeking to intentionally offend, with “facts” that will almost certainly have to be rescinded or corrected in the aftermath of its publicity*.
Yesterday’s almost maniacal rant by the one-time Vietnam journalist, many-time shark jumper John Pilger is sure to leave a bad taste in the mouth of even, as he calls them, “the most liberal critics” of Western foreign policy. Pilger is vehemently against intervention in Syria, but has set out his argument in perhaps the most deceitful and offensive way.
Pilger, who Auberon Waugh once made a verb of (“to pilger”: to present information in a sensationalist manner to reach a foregone conclusion) opens with a shot across the bow of the “terrorist” United States of America:
“…we are held hostage by the prospect of a terrorism whose nature and history even the most liberal critics still deny. The great unmentionable is that humanity’s most dangerous enemy resides across the Atlantic.”
Presenting anecdotal evidence as factual – which blamed the British, not the Americans – for the rebel uprising in Syria, Pilger continues to rail against
Britain, er, America, bleating about Hiroshima, Vietnam, and of course, Gaza. It seems Mr. Waugh’s assessment of what it is “to pilger” is absolutely on the money. We began with the “terrorist” America, yet within four paragraphs we’ve arrived in Hamas-land. Clever trick.
Not a peep, says he, about the chemical weapons usage in Iraq, or indeed by Israel in Gaza. “No Obama red line”, he writes. But if the man were not reaching so desperately to make Assad look like the victim, he would perhaps be willing to do some research into the matter. Depleted uranium, which Pilger claims first hand account of in Iraq, is not part of the Chemical Weapons Convention.
And nor is white phosphorus, which you’d think The Guardian’s editors would know, and correct, before allowing Pilger to conflate Assad’s use of sarin with it. Why? Because just yesterday the paper was forced into an embarrassing correction over the matter. The Guardian amended a claim that likened Israeli use of white phosphorus to Assad’s chemical weapons attack with the following:
This article was amended on 10 September 2013. The original said that white phosphorus, used by Israeli forces in Gaza in 2008, was a chemical weapon. It is not classed as such by the Chemical Weapons Convention, and its use is in itself not – as the piece claimed – “in breach of all international conventions”.
And now that Pilger has gotten his “facts” out of the way, in true form, he seeks to invoke arguments from “authorities”, despite ending his article on a violently anti-establishment note (you’ll see). But who does he choose to use for their views? None other than United Nations “special rapporteur” Richard Falk, known for his 9/11 conspiracy views and frothing at the mouth anti-Israel schtick.
Curiously, authoritarian as Pilger would no doubt have Western nations be if only they were enforcing his values, he (and the Guardian, by publishing the article), seems to incite domestic terrorism at worst, or criminal behaviour at best. Making a drastic leap, claiming that America has been taken over by a bloodless coup, and that Obama is simply the puppet of his Pentagon masters, Pilger uses the words of the Nuremburg judges (how f**king offensive can this man get?) to hammer his point about non-intervention in Syria home:
“Individual citizens have the duty to violate domestic laws to prevent crimes against peace and humanity.”
Yes, apparently Obama and the West seeking action against an Arab dictator who doesn’t pretend not to have slaughtered tens if not hundreds of thousands (remember, the debate is about how, apparently, not if) is apparently the same as the slaughter of 6 million Jews across Europe, by a national socialist eugenicist.
The attempt to halt what is easily on its way to being this centuries worst humanitarian disaster is to Pilger’s mind, a “crime against peace and humanity”. And this is the dross that The Guardian promotes. Is it any wonder no one listens to them anymore?
Raheem Kassam is the Founder/Editor of TrendingCentral.com
* I find it worthy of note that The Guardian seems to, at least to my mind, issue far more corrections than any other of its broadsheet companions. Could it be that The Guardian understands, like few others do, that the repetition of a lie in the first instance is more beneficial to its agenda than issuing correction upon correction acts in detriment? Think about it. An article is published, 50,000 people read it, then a correction is made. By this point, the damage is done, and maybe only ten percent more people will see the damn thing anyway. Mission accomplished?