Category Archives: Justice and society

The Guardian newpaper’s liberal imperialism

See John Hilley [While Israel kill Gaza’s children, media shield the truth about Hamas] on the Guardian‘s continued vilification of Hamas by carrying an advert by Israel-supporting figures depicting Hamas as biblical equivalent of sacrificial child-killers, reinforcing the view of Hamas as a “terrorist organisation” rather than a democratically elected government (following a the insistence by Israel and the US from democratic elections in Gaza [25 January 2006] that would undermine Fatah’s position, who at the time had lost their favour). Thus liberal space in the newspapers is being used essentially to condone Israel continued murder of Gaza civilians including children just for being voters of Hamas. Open link

http://johnhilley.blogspot.co.uk/2014/08/while-israel-kill-gazas-children-media.html

This compares with the Sunday Times changed tone over the Gaza conflict, being more open to justifying Hamas’ actions [10th August 2014].  Open link

http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/article1444832.ece

In fact, the Sunday Times, seems here to have broken the normal false narrative by the British press of the Middle-east conflict which is, in John Pilger’s words, “… that there are two equal sides, and the on one side of this equal relationship in the ‘conflict’, as they say, the Palestinians [‘unworthy victims’] are attacking the Israelis…” [see John Pilger’s interview with Afshin Rattansi on the British media’s historical manipulation and distortion of facts in regard to foreign conflicts on link: http://rt.com/shows/going-underground/177516-western-media-victims-uk/, in which Pilger reminisces about the extraordinary ‘objectivity’ of the reporting from the Soviet Union in 1918 by Morgan Philips Price, the reporter in Moscow (ironically) for the Manchester Guardian, as the Guardian was then called].

But in the same breakthrough issue [10th August] of the Sunday Times‘, we also find frank coverage of Sayyeda Warsi’s actions during her resignation, and her loud condemnation of the Conservative Party over their stance on Gaza, as well as reporting on the associated subject matter of the Conservative Party’s frankly bleak prospects at the next election

http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/uk_news/article1445052.ece

Developments which show that the conservative press in the UK is more balanced than the liberal press in its foreign reporting, in the sense of being more open to views from outside the “metropole”, is noticeable in the Daily Telegraph‘s reporting on middle-eastern news, with as an example,  its critical coverage of the David Cameron decision to “lead a review into” the Muslim Brotherhood [in the context of the war against terror]

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/terrorism-in-the-uk/10938780/Britains-treatment-of-the-Muslim-Brotherhood-is-spectacularly-cack-handed.html

This early [2nd July 2014] article predates the eventual outcome of this “review”, which showed that there was no cause for concern, or even that there could have been any original basis for the review. In fact the Financial Times on 18th August in its article “Whitehall report into Muslim brotherhood delayed by wrangling“, talks about the fact that we should be more concerned about the UK government’s links with the Emiratis and the Saudis who insisted on the “review” of the Muslim Brotherhood in the first place, and who have overseen the funding of, if not at times directly funded, what has become ISIS, those nihilist takfiris who are terrorising the Middle-East at the moment.

But its not only on the subject of the Middle-East and Israel where the Guardian seems to plug the perspective of the “metropole” and its élites, it has also been traditionally unbalanced in its coverage of Hugo Chavez and Venezuela, displaying a perhaps surprise antagonistic streak towards “Bolivarian Socialism”. Open link to see a letter of complaint to the editor from 2012

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/oct/03/balanced-coverage-western-bias-chavez-venezuela

 

 

 

How the unravelling of Yugoslavia began with a Reagan Memo

Watch “the weight of chains” documentary about how the unravelling of Yugoslavia and the ensuing Yugoslav war and subsequent NATO bombing of Serbia all started with a memo written and signed by Ronald Reagan on March 19, 1984 called “National Security Decision Directive on US Policy towards Yugoslavia”, which at one point read “… US policy will be to promote the trend towards a market oriented Yugoslav economy…”

Open the link:

Nobel Peace Laureates Slam Human Rights Watch’s Refusal to Cut Ties to U.S. Government

Mairead Maguire, Adolfo Pérez Esquivel, Richard Falk, Hans von Sponeck, and Keane Bhatt write to Human Rights Watch president Kenneth Roth

On May 12 2014

Read

Nobel Peace Laureates to Human Rights Watch: Close Your Revolving Door to U.S. Government

open link:

http://www.alternet.org/world/nobel-peace-laureates-human-rights-watch-close-your-revolving-door-us-government?paging=off#bookmark

and on July 8 2014

Nobel Peace Laureates Slam Human Rights Watch’s Refusal to Cut Ties to U.S. Government

open link:

http://www.alternet.org/world/nobel-peace-laureates-slam-human-rights-watchs-refusal-cut-ties-us-government

 

 

 

Glenn Greenwald’s response to Michael Kingsley

In 2006, Charlie Savage won the Pulitzer Prize for his series of articles in The Boston Globe exposing the Bush administration’s use of “signing statements” as a means of ignoring the law.  In response to those revelations, Michael Kinsley–who has been kicking around Washington journalism for decades as the consummate establishment “liberal” insider–wrote a Washington Post op-ed defending the Bush practice (“nailing Bush simply for stating his views on a constitutional issue, without even asking whether those views are right or wrong, is wrong”) and mocking concerns over it as overblown (“Sneaky! . . . The Globe does not report what it thinks a president ought to do when called upon to enforce or obey a law he or she believes to be unconstitutional. It’s not an easy question”).

Far more notable was Kinsley’s suggestion that it was journalists themselves–not Bush–who might be the actual criminals, due both to their refusal to reveal their sources when ordered to do so and their willingness to publish information without the permission of the government…

see more on

https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/05/23/response-michael-kinsley/

 

 

The Irrelevance of Liberalism to the Question of Freedom

Liberalism in Arabic is ‘libraliyya’, a transliterated term which obviously carries none of its Latin roots into the language, nor, except for small groups of expatriates or humanities academics, does it carry any of the usual connotations associated with it. The hard reality is that, for the people on the ground in the Middle-East, it is a term that has come to be associated with either tyranny or imperialism or both. This isn’t the first time this has been said. Emmeline Pankhurst, who did understand what liberalism meant and what it stood for, said as much in 1900 when the Fabians backed British Imperialism, for instance. Read more:

Some Fundamental Lessons From the Arab Spring