Sunday, June 10, 2007

Media Deliberately Misquoting Lieberman on Iran

I'm no fan of Senator Lieberman but the media response to his statements that the US should conduct cross-border raids into Iran against attackers who are striking at US forces from there (similar to what Turkey is doing in Iraq) is a fantastic example of deliberately mis-characterizing what he said.

The media's distortions imply that Senator Lieberman called for bombing Iran, a US invasion of Iran or even a nuclear attack on Iran. Let's consider the CBS2 Chicago story headline "Lieberman: Bomb Iran If It Doesn't Stop". In fact what Lieberman was actually proposing was hitting terrorist training camps inside Iran.

Several headlines read, "Lieberman: US Should Weigh Iran Attack" and "Lieberman: US Should Weigh Iran Attack". Of all the papers, only Australia's Sydney Morning Herald got it right with "US should attack Iran base : Lieberman". The difference is pretty blatant.

This is what Senator Lieberman actually said.

Mr. Lieberman said he supported the high-level talks with Iran, but said,
"I think we've got to be prepared to take aggressive military action against the Iranians to stop them from killing Americans in Iraq... By some estimates, they have killed as many as 200 American soldiers."

"They can’t believe that they have immunity for training and equipping people to come in and kill Americans," he said. "We cannot let them get away with it.”

“I think we’ve got to be prepared to take aggressive military action against the Iranians to stop them from killing Americans in Iraq,” Mr. Lieberman said in an interview on the CBS News program “Face the Nation.”

This could be achieved mostly with air attacks, Mr. Lieberman said, adding, “I’m not talking about a massive ground invasion of Iran.”

This is roughly parallel to the US strikes against Al Queda terrorists in Somalia, Sudan and Yemen and elsewhere that take place outside of any war. Senator Lieberman has made a fairly moderate statement supporting negotiations but warning that if attacks from Iran continue, the US should be prepared to strike the terrorist camps.

Then why is the media inflating his statements to such a degree, especially when Lieberman is not the first Senator to make similar suggestions? Could it be in part because Senator Lieberman is a visibly Jewish Senator that painting him as a warmonger looking for a war in Iran suits the interests of the anti-war elements in the press?


Yobeeone said...

Let's get menopausally snide. :] Here I go! Sure. Let's attack little hotspots in Iran, maybe even use air strikes. After all, the Israeli's have proven just how successful such responses are.

On the other hand, why anyone would want to misquote "he who has the personality of a chair" Lieberman, defies my tiny imagination. I suppose it could be an antisemitic attack.

On the other hand, maybe the media's finally getting bored with "Hi I'll do anything for attention" Paris and think Mr. Boring would make interesting foder. :]

Keli Ata said...

The ommission of the words "air bases" was critical, and clearly deliberate. You can only wonder how many people just glance at the headlines and make assumptions.

btw and OT, I was watching a program about the Six-Day War last night. Attacking the air bases was one of the first things the IDF did. Very wise to cripple their enemy's air defence first.

Another thing I noticed too was that Dayan didn't release anything to the media initially. Apparently he was afraid if the media got wind of the fact that Israel was doing so well other countries would try to strong-arm Israel into making some sort of treaty, after they had already committed themselves to war.

Something else that stuck in my mind--the narrator said that the Six Day War was just 20 years after the Holocaust had ended and most Israelis felt they were fighting for their lives against another Holocaust. That's why they fought with everything they had.

I still didn't understand the significance of the Egyptians or their allies closing the straits of Tiran (sp) though.

Maggie M. Thornton said...

Yes, I think you answered your own question. Constantly stirring the war cauldron has paralyzed this country. We are doing "something" but not enough of "anything." Our soldiers are dying for the lack of more of "something." It's maddening.

Without twisting and distorting, and even eliminating "words," there would be nothing fit for the MSM to print.

Maggie's Notebook

Sultan Knish said...

closing the straits of tiran to israel was an act of war, it cut off supplies to israel and oil and foreshadowed the coming arab attack

Sultan Knish said...

yes the MSM basically exist to twist and sensationalize things to further their own agenda

Keli Ata said...

Criticizing Lieberman was the liberal media's way to criticize Israel by proxy.

The media can't claim ignorance (re Lieberman being Jewish) as the fact that he is a Modern Orthodox Jew was often discussed when he was running for VP.

Lemon said...

Lieberman is a liberal.
As is Bush and the rest of the government.
There is no longer a conservative element in the United States except among the people.

Keli Ata said...

Aren't all the kassams being fired at Sderot also an act of war? Invading Israeli air space and injuring and killing people is definitely an act of war.

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