Floatilla Consensus

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Hey, it turns out there’s one thing we can all agree on when it comes to the Floatilla disaster: the media are unfairly portraying…something! My new favorite blog, The Awl, has coverage of a bunch of pro and anti-Israeli gatherings in Brooklyn, and ends with this somewhat depressing/somewhat profound assessment:

The most strikingly bizarre thing about the whole messy affair is where the two sides agreed. When I asked Hikind about the response in his district to the flotilla incident, he responded that “everyone was upset.” Naturally. But they were mainly peeved about the “one-sided coverage.” He cited CNN’s unfair blame of Israel in the immediate aftermath, as the facts where still trickling out. Inside the church, Lee prefaced her footage as images the Israeli government tried to block. They “didn’t want the world to know.” Likewise, Brooks saw his role as combating dangerous myths about Israel perpetrated in—where else?—the media.

Both sides’ outsized ire toward the media—an industry that we are told is increasingly dying, fractured, and decidedly not authoritative—seemed odd, given the actual issues at stake. But I can see how people in the city who care passionately about Israel-Palestine, or have loved ones one either side, might be overwhelmed by futility. The easiest option is probably to hurl insults at cable news.

And so I left with a bit of renewed gratitude that I don’t, in my daily life, have to deal with a right-wing Israeli government, or Hezbollah rockets, or a U.S. funded IDF, or a nuclear Iran. I only have to contend with Wolf Blitzer.

Posted on June 22, 2010

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