NY TIMES MADE CASTRO; AL JAZEERA IS MAKING OSAMA
Make no mistake. Insurgents and their leaders have powerful allies in the media. For every Dana Priest who gives indirect aid and comfort to the enemy, there are reporters who give them direct aid by helping sell them. Stalin had NYT's Walter Duarty. Mao had NY Herald's Edgar Snow. Castro had NYT's Herbert L. Matthews. Khomeini had Michel Foucault and Bin Laden has Al Jazeera.
Just note its treatment of the Bin Laden tapes. It gets hold of the tapes. It carefully times their release AND uses editing and commentary to hone its message. By the time, the entire tape is released, the interest in it has abated and its real thrust blunted.
In today's release, Al Jazeera is trying to focus world attention on the continued threat Osama poses to Western civilians while covering up the threat Osama poses to Muslim governments and liberal Muslims.
As Tigerpundit astutely points out Bin Laden is silence on Iraq. Why? Because the Iraqis have just agreed on a unity government. The speaker of the parliament is a Sunni with ties to the insurgency. That means Al Qaeda has to leave Iraq. Bin Laden knew it was coming. He prepared the tape to be released with instruction to his followers on their next assignment. They are to return to Sudan and the Arabian penninsula. Al Jazeera faithfully did his bidding.
His real enemies are Muslim reformers especially those active in the Arabian peninsula and Sudan. Do note that:
Al-Jazeera played only a few brief excerpts from the audio tape. In portions that were not aired, the network said Bin Laden weighed in on the conflict in Chechnya, on King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, and on liberal Arab writers.
Why was it edited out? Is it because Al Jazeera wanted to protect Bin Laden from himself in the same manner Zawahiri tried to protect Zarqaui from himself? Is it because Bin Laden is accusing Abdullah and other Gulf leaders of betraying Islamists for encouraging dialogue with non Muslims in the same way he is accusing the government of Sudan for ending its war with the Christians of Southern Sudan and permitting entry of UN soldiers?
Complaining about cutting off funds to Hamas suits Al Jazeera just fine. Justifying bombing Western civilians is no problem. Encouraging a boycott on American and European goods because of their support of the Danish cartoonists is a worthy endeavor. Turning over the Danish cartoonist to Bin Laden justice is less extreme than offering a price for the heads.
Alienating the Russians, king Abdullah and liberal Muslims is more of a problem at this moment, so they edit out that part of the tape.
What can I say, NYT should be proud.
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