Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Absolutely laughable bias at Time Magazine

Time's recent story on the relationship between United States President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is ridiculously, utterly ineptly at odds with reality in its description of the two leaders. The article starts by portraying Netanyahu as the starry-eyed idealist who puts religious symbolism ahead of practical policy:
In Tel Aviv in 1949, a year after Israel's founding, Benhamin "was born into the ideological wing of the Likud," says a Netanyahu staffer. "It's deeply ingrained." His politics are determined by this history. "Netanyahu thinks of a direct line from Moses down to him -- at the minimum, he has to be a guardian [of the Jewish state]," says his sometime political opponent, for Labor Party member and speaker of the Knesset Avrum Burg. Avishai Margalit, a professor at Princeton University's Institute for Advanced Study, says, "The revisionists put tremendous weight on symbols and declarations. Netanyahu thinks that the minute he stops making symbolic gestures, that's the end of the Israeli cause."
It then continues by portraying Obama as the level-headed, street-hardened political realist:
That life among poor Muslims taught Obama two large lessons, according to his account of the period in his books. First, he learned that the world was "violent," "unpredictable" and "often cruel" and that survival depended not on higher principles but on "taking life on its own terms." Second, Obama lived in the kind of neighborhood from which, as he has noted before, many terrorists come. A top priority for winning the war against terrorism, he said, would be "drying up the rising well of support for extremism" in places like Indonesia -- and the Middle East."
The reality is that the article almost precisely inverts the backgrounds of the two men. Obama is the starry-eyed ideologist who puts symbolism ahead of practical action. Obama was practically born into the Communist Party. His mother was a "fellow traveller"; his father was evicted from the Kenyan government for plotting a socialist coup. Obama built a career around meaningless symbolism, starting back in his days as a "community organizer", continuing throughout his career as a tenured radical law professor, and culminating in "hope and change". If anyone in the world thinks that he is the appointed intermediary between God and Man, it's Obama.

On the other hand, Netanyahu is the one with the practical experience. If you really want to spend your childhood worrying about the terrorists living in your neighborhood, trying spending your childhood years in 1950s Jerusalem. Netanyahu became a real leader of men under conditions of full scale war of national survival (i.e. situations a heck of a lot more dangerous than Obama's faculty meetings). And I'm pretty sure that any Jew living after 1945 doesn't need lessons on how the world is violent, unpredictable, and often cruel.


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