Roger Cohen Gets It Wrong, Again
Hitler's minister of propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, once stated, "If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth." No one is more keenly aware of this than fascism's spawned offspring, Hamas and its Muslim Brotherhood affiliates. But when Hamas offers its falsehoods for consumption, no one -- except the Arabs of the Mid-East and their most ardent third-world and leftist allies -- takes them seriously.
The problem, however, becomes acute when a putative semi-respectable columnist espouses extremist propaganda. Roger Cohen does precisely that with his latest November 22 screed, "Enough."
Cohen once again repeats the exaggerated casualty figure of 1,400 Palestinian deaths occurring as a result of Israel's Operation Cast Lead without noting that this figure is disputed. Nor does he note that even according to his own inflated count, more than half of those killed were terror combatants, a fact belatedly corroborated by Hamas itself. Instead, Roger Cohen has New York Times readers believing that Israel flailed its might wildly and indiscriminately. Even Richard Goldstone, author of the now-infamous Goldstone Report, no longer subscribes to this skewed view.
The casualty figure that Cohen cites comes from the so-called Palestinian Center for Human Rights. That group is no more an advocate for human rights than Goebbels was an advocate for Jewish rights. The PCHR is headed by an asinine character named Raji Sourani. The darling of the misguided radical left as well as the neo-fascist right, Sourani subscribes to the anti-Semitic canard that Israel practices "ethnic cleansing" and "Apartheid." In March 2000, he compared Israel's counter-insurgency efforts in South Lebanon to the Nazi occupation of France.
In sum, Sourani is a discredited partisan and a mouthpiece for Israel's enemies. Cohen's inclusion of Sourani's casualty figures is problematic, but it's only half the story. By deliberately omitting the Israeli estimate, Cohen turns himself into a partisan advocate and loses whatever shred of credibility he had left.
With convoluted logic, Cohen praises Egypt's newly self-appointed neo-fascist dictator, Mohamed Morsi, and credits him with "stopping the latest round of killing." Setting aside for the moment that Cohen implicitly equates Israel's precision targeted strikes with Hamas's indiscriminate rocket fire, Cohen fails to recognize (likely deliberately) that Morsi's Egypt facilitated the latest round of conflict. Egypt deliberately turns a blind eye to Hamas's smuggling efforts, allowing weapons, including long-range Fajr-5s, to flow into the terrorist den unimpeded. As William Saletan accurately noted, "what Egypt has done, at best, is to douse a fire that was ignited and fed by Egypt." Moreover, Cohen fails to note the daily anti-Semitic venom that flows from official Egyptian government institutions with ever-increasing regularity and shrill. It is likely that Hamas felt emboldened by the rhetoric adopted by their Muslim Brotherhood kinsmen in Egypt, which led to their more aggressive posture vis-à-vis Israel.
Cohen's continued one-sided approach to the Israeli-Arab conflict and his consistently flawed analyses prove beyond any doubt that he is not a mainstream columnist, but rather an Islamist propagandist who uses the discredited New York Times as a platform to espouse convoluted positions and falsehoods.