Sunday, April 08, 2007

Creed of Fareed: A Reasonable Liar

When journalists mislead, obscure the facts or just plain lie it hurts everyone. In this recent column appearing in Newsweek Fareed Zakaria either is a fool or has thrown all journalistic ethics out the window. I will admit that Mr. Zakaria is a very clever fellow as he twists reality into a pretzel with an adeptness that would make Houdini green with envy.

From a recent Fareed column:

“Last fall, the Bush administration was debating how to handle the Iranian nuclear threat. It was the now well-trodden tussle between hard-liners and pragmatists.”

This of course is the really big lie. Iran does not yet have a nuclear bomb so what nuclear threat are we talking about? And beyond that even if say in the next ten years Iran managed to manufacture a couple of warheads it would hardly make them a nuclear threat. And frankly I do not even believe they want nuclear bombs because it goes against their beliefs to kill civilians in wars, unlike another country that I know.

From an interview with Juan Cole:

“The supreme jurisprudent Ali Khamenei has repeatedly said that nuclear weapons are incompatible with Islamic law, because war, of course, in Islam, is a ritual. It’s incompatible with Islamic thinking on war that one would kill non-combatants. And nuclear weapons, obviously, would tend to mainly kill non-combatants.”

But getting back to Fareed:

“Whatever the internal politics, Iran appears to have miscalculated. Its actions will only confirm to many key countries that it is a reckless and untrustworthy state.”

Please excuse me but let us make an effort to regain a point of reality here. After our invasion of Iraq, against a majority of opinion around the world, it is the United States that is held by many foreign nations to be a reckless and untrustworthy state. Indeed everything we have done in recent times has encouraged other nations to evolve into armed camps.

Then Fareed further frames the situation that falls well within the U.S. party line that Iran is a threat and needs to be brought to heel like some errant pet dog:

“This episode is, in some ways, a metaphor for the broader relationship between Iran and the world. Namely, that pressure works, as long as you can help Tehran chart a way out. Iran is a prickly, nationalistic country with legitimate interests in the Middle East. It makes perfect sense to contain and curtail its efforts to go nuclear, destabilize Iraq and foment trouble in Lebanon and Palestine. But the United States should also think creatively about a way for Iran to get out of the box it is in. Sticks can work only if there are also carrots on the table.”

Ah, this sounds so reasonable does it not? Carrots and sticks yet amidst all this reasonableness Fareed slips in a claim that Iran is destabilizing Iraq. Who is destabilizing Iraq? Is it Iran? Really and truly? How neatly and with the precise cut of a surgeon does Fareed amputate the fact that the United States led a criminal invasion against Iraq disposing of its leader and then disbanding their army who may have played a crucial role in keeping Iraq from sinking into its present state of violence. And who is fomenting trouble in Lebanon and Palestine? Why none other than that source for all bad things in the world today Iran. Again we see facts lopped off and or seemingly forgotten as I suppose Israel had nothing to do with the “trouble” in Palestine and Lebanon. Fareed takes reality and stands it on its head because to anyone who has been following current events would know that it is the Untied States and Israel that are the greatest cause for a lack of stability in the Middle East. I also love the tidbit of wisdom Fareed lets fall that Iran has interests in the Middle East. Well, when you consider where Iran, unlike the U.S., is located that Iran has legitimate interests in the Middle East it truly becomes a brilliant piece of analysis on Fareed’s part.

Fareed continues with this:

“Iran is not some brilliant and all-powerful behemoth, destined to dominate the Middle East. It is a significant regional power, rich with oil resources but burdened by a failing economy and an unpopular and divided leadership. As long as the United States can work with other countries to contain Iran's worst ambitions but yet accede to its legitimate ones, the situation is manageable through diplomacy and not force.”

Surely Fareed has missed his calling as a stand-up comedian. He alleviates our fears that Iran is destined to dominate The Middle East which of course is the last thing America and its little rag-tag band of pay to play coalition is interested in and so here again we have those crazy Iranians while on the other hand we have the reasonable, beneficial and benign Western powers while Fareed puts on the mask of liberalism by extolling on the wisdom of diplomacy over force, tell that to the people of Iraq.

When journalists like Fareed, who is legitimatized by the fact that he writes for a well known national publication like Newsweek, spins, lies, and leaves huge gaping holes in his columns it makes him an enabler of the war of the strong against the weak. He not only does himself a disservice by being a disgrace to his calling but he is a aiding and abetting the murder, torture and thievery that is now occurring in the name of Americans everywhere. He also is endangering us all by trying to whitewash a dangerous situation that is harming not only the victims of imperialism but us as well. But that never seems to matter much to the Fareeds of the world.

This column by Fareed is the epitome of the entire party line that has been embraced by republican and democrat leaders alike which is that Iran is a threat that must be dealt with. All the debates we hear on this party line are based on a lie. Therefore any policy that is born from this party line is bound to dig us deeper into the hole we have already dug for ourselves.

And though Fareed aligns himself with diplomacy do sanctions against Iran really fall into the category of diplomacy? Our own president Bush has a habit of declaring a nation is evil and then proceeds to refuse to speak with them. How exactly is that diplomacy? Diplomacy has worked for England in getting their fab 15 back so why can’t we try the same? The answer is very likely that the reason we cannot try diplomacy is Iran does not have nuclear weapons so how can we use diplomacy to make them give up something that does not exist? In fact since we are a reckless and untrustworthy nation it would seem all we really want to do is dominate the Middle East by pounding them into submission.