Continue reading: The State of the "Peace Process," An Enlightened Mass Media Viewpoint
By Barry Rubin
Mass media editorials are worth analyzing not because they influence government policy—they don’t—but because they reflect current thinking in elements of the elite and sometimes precisely what high government officials are thinking.
Nowadays the New York Times gives us the loony concepts that dominate America’s government. What is shocking—the equivalent for an analyst of coming upon some amazing geographical feature like the Grand Canyon—is the massive craters of logical contradiction. You can’t believe that these could possibly go unnoticed by their authors but they do. Once you have an ideology that doesn’t conform with reality anything is possible.
In contrast, the Washington Post reflects the most enlightened elite thinking. To read a Post editorial is almost to be persuaded that there is something approaching a normal situation in Washington, where policymakers still live by such things as national interests, credibility, rewarding friends and punishing enemies. Far from perfect, mind you, but sane. A good measure of the credit, at least when it comes to the Middle East, should go to one man, Jackson Diehl, who—to use current slang—“gets it.”
When one reads Post editorials it is usually possible to feel hope. When one reads the Times editorial one often feels like buying Iranian war bonds and hiding in a cave in New Zealand.
Recently, the Post had an excellent editorial asking the simple question: Why is the U.S. government acting as if Syria’s dictatorship is a good guy and its ruler a “reformer” when it is far more repressive than its Egyptian counterpart was, not to mention anti-American, an ally of Iran, opposed to Arab-Israeli peace, and a huge sponsor of terrorism including killing Americans in Iraq?
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press later this year. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reports, and now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media
Technorati Tag: Middle East and Media Bias.