Reader Drennan Lindsay referred us to an absolutely superb article–a speech, actually, delivered at a conference on Jan. 1–by Melanie Phillips. Ms. Phillips is a British writer whose name I’ve heard, but whom I have not followed closely. From now on I will.
Phillips’ article is titled: “The Reporting of Iraq and Israel: An Abuse of Media Power.” Her focus is Great Britain, but what she says is also applicable to the American press. She begins:
A friend went into Blackwells university bookshop in Oxford and asked the counter clerk: ‘Do you have a copy of Alan Dershowitz’s The Case for Israel?’ ‘There is no case for Israel’, the counter clerk replied.
She states her thesis early on, and proceeds to document it with chapter and verse, in a dense, brilliant, eloquent argument:
Britain is gripped by an unprecedented degree of irrationality, prejudice and hysteria over the issues of Iraq, the terrorist jihad and Israel. All three are intimately linked; all three, however, are thought by public opinion to be linked in precisely the wrong way. This is because all three have been systematically misreported, distorted and misrepresented through a lethal combination of profound ignorance, political malice and ancient prejudices.
This systematic abuse by the media is having a devastating impact in weakening the ability of the west to defend itself against the unprecedented mortal threat that it faces from the Islamic jihad. People cannot and will not fight if they don