Frederick Douglass

"Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did, and it never will. Find out just what people will submit to, and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them..." Frederick Douglass

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Wikiganda Alert: The Psy-op Moves To The Small Screen.

As for me, I'm waiting for the musical.

For those of you who are still deluded to think the US wouldn't shoot this guy if he was what he claims to be, Agent Assange's new TV show should do the trick. Here we see the empire's factotum doing his duty.

We should recall that our fair-haired boy made a deal with Zion not to release any "documents" which would be detrimental for Israel. This alone should suffice to reveal who he is and what he's doing. Agent Assange has not been at all averse to publishing documents that were compromising to the governments of Israel's neighbors (Egypt, Tunisia, Syria et al), yet he refrains from anything which would hinder the racist, fascist, genocidal regime in Tel Aviv in its conquest of Palestine. One can only wonder as to motive but one thing is clear: It is not justice that concerns him.

Given that his patrons are now trying to topple the Assads in Damascus, it should come as no surprise that his first-ever guest is Hezbollah leader, Sayyid Nasrallah. The initial volley of questions had to do with Palestine, then came a marvelous bit of propaganda: If the conflict were resolved to his satisfaction, would Hezbollah disarm?

Why should they ever disarm? Hezbollah is the ruling faction, they govern Lebanon. What sovereign nation would disarm after the successful resolution of a foreign conflict? Would our celebrity charlatan ask whether Washington would disarm if the Mexican government and the Zapatistas came to peace? While Nasrallah does act, rather magnanimously one might say, on behalf of the Palestinians, Lebanon would still be left with an aggressively expansionist, nuclear-armed, regional superpower on its border, one with a history of unprovoked attacks and cruel occupations. Hezbollah would have to be out of their minds to disarm. The question is tendentious, and absurd.

Save, that is, for its propaganda value.

The question perpetuates the central myth of Israel's existence--that it is surrounded by enemies and under constant threat. Western imperialism created Israel and now sustains it by depicting it ever as the victim and never the victimizer, never the aggressor. Agent Assange's captious question presupposes that Hezbollah should disarm, and bolsters the racist claim that Israel is surrounded by menacing Arabs looking to push her into the sea.

The next questions were about the bourgeois habits of some affluent Hezbollah, what the limits of Hezbollah's support for Syria might be, and whether Hezbollah is an agent of the Assads: all insulting, embarrassing, and impossible to answer without potentially alienating members, supporters, allies and prospective partners.

Curiosity or sabotage?

THe following question was verbal quicksand: Why has Tunisia withdrawn its official recognition of Syria?

The answer is that the counterrevolution has been successful there thus far, and the replacement puppet government is following orders. However this is an opinion not widely shared and hence the question puts Nasrallah in the position of bashing the new Tunisian government which has been an inspiration to millions across the Arab world, or seconding Tunisia's move and selling out Syria. Neither position is of benefit to Hezbollah nor Nasrallah.

After this sequence of difficult questions, Assange serves up a few softballs asking why the US blocks Hezbollah's news broadcasts and how Nasrallah managed his successes. This is often done by investigators and attorneys to get interviewees talking and make them feel comfortable in advance of a provocative line of inquiry.

Astonishingly, Assange ends with a question about religion: Isn't God the ultimate hegemon, and don't people need to be liberated from that?

Given that Nasrallah is a cleric of a monotheistic faith who heads a religious organization, one knows what the response will be. Assange prefaced the question by saying it was provocative, and it was, so why ask it? The question may appear harmless but was it asked in the hope of eliciting an angry reaction? The vile notion that Muslims are violent, hot-headed, religious zealots incapable of nuanced thought has been the central theme of Western propaganda since the Iranian Revolution. Did Assange expect an unexpected reply? Or was he hoping for a meltdown?

This is sophisticated propaganda. The common, vulgar propaganda suffices to keep the Right squarely behind US foreign policy, however there needs to be something to hold the Left in check. Assange's releases cleave nicely with imperial interests while at the same time confirming the inclinations of the liberal Left. It doesn't matter that the right hates him, they are not his target demographic. In fact it's an advantage as it enhances his standing with the besotted Left. Assange scores points for having Nasrallah on, and by seeming to treat him respectfully, but the questions he posits are designed to ensnare.

It didn't work though. Nasrallah handled the questions skillfully, answering most honestly and all well. He's an impressive fellow.

For those interested in Hezbollah, I wrote something about Gaddafi which touched on its inception and the relationship between the Assads and the Lebanese resistance. The relevant section is entitled The Missing Imam, and can be found here.