Omri Ceren has been doing a spot of googling. His point of departure is the section of the new Wikileaks revelations that the Saudis and other Arab regimes have all along been beseeching the Americans to bomb Iran's nuclear capacity. Taking that documented fact, he then goes back to see what the various pundits have been saying about the matter all along. Predictably, they were reporting on an alternate universe, one in which the Saudis and others care deeply about the Palestinians, and not so much abut the Iranians.
Andrew Sullivan, in a sign of the changing times, never misses a beat: oops! The Saudis et al have been as strident as the Israelis in their calls for an attack on Iranian nuclear facilities? Well, remember, they're only Sunni Arab autocrats - the implication, you understand, being that they're not really to be taken seriously if you're a moral person. Of course, the case can be made that Abu Mazen, Salam Fayyad, and all of the Hamas leadership are also Sunni Arab autocrats, but I rather think Andrew wouldn't use the term in their case.
Look, we all have our agendas; some of us even admit them openly (me, I'm a Zionist, and also mostly pro-American; Julian Assange of Wikileaks is anti-American and thinks he's God). Some of us try to write mostly about things we know about. Others: less so (Andrew knows none of the languages, and has no access to decision makers or any relevant players; he lives off website links). And then there are the professional propagandists, the people who have to know they're carefully tailoring their descriptions of reality so as to create a public opinion that will agree with their agenda. The BBC, for example: Robin Shepherd documents - once again, and again, and again - that their editorial decisions cannot possibly be portrayed as an honest attempt to inform the public, and can only be understood as conscious propaganda.
Or is it conscious? Read IsraelNurse's excellent analysis of the Guardian's Harriet Sherwood's first six months in Israel. Just look at the list of places she has reported from, almost all of them Palestinian (she's the correspondent to Israel but she never reports from Israel). On the one hand, she can't possibly be doing the traveling she's doing while telling herself she's reporting on Israel; there's no way she can be as biased as she is without knowing that's what she is. Yet is this truly so? It's a question I've been pondering for decades, and have never quite convinced myself either way: when antisemites frame reality to reinforce their animosities, do they do so in bad faith (i.e do they know they're lying or framing in a deceitful manner), or are they so carried away by their detestations that they lose track, and really begin to believe in their own sincerity? This is not an easy question to answer.