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Monday, November 19, 2012


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I wouldn't underestimate ideological watchdog groups involvement. It's really strange to see all of a sudden people concerned with media bias on my newsfeed, but my Facebook feed tells that story. The most popular is the IDF banners which have been listing in big white-on-black letters the number of rockets per week. Now they have moved up to the number of rockets over the last 10 years, to get a more shocking number. Another type of propaganda is replacing it, showing a picture of a suffering Arab and then having some cynical quote about how you should realize this is all an intentional lie to make you feel sorry for people who are totally fine. If my Facebook feed was a fair sample, the critics even outweigh the sympathizers about 3 or 4 to 1, although in Israel itself the war is overwhelmingly popular at least by a factor of 9 to 1. There is an organized propaganda campaign going on outside of regular bias.

Ideological watchdog groups are part of the "systems of disinformation" I was referring to, actually, and I'd agree that the Times probably heard from them (and possibly the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs as well) after the story appeared...and responded as the Times regularly does in those cases.

Come to think of it, it's not so strange. Flak and the war-on-terror are the weakest filters in the Chomsky/Hermann Propaganda model. The stronger filters are more aligned with self-interest -- ownership and advertisers, sourcing. Journalists being killed would fit that type of incentive more. On top of that, Obama is signalling at least a pretense that there is distance between him and Netanyahu, that he is critical of using violence. Still, it will be an impressive feat of masochism to let this fall down the memory hole, although not as impressive as completely ignoring Netanyahu's election and other political reasons for this attack.


Hey John, nice catch. Completely off topic for this post, but I just wanted to let you know. I read your whole Taking Responsibility series. Outstanding, I'm glad you finally shared it, and I'm very glad I read it.

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