Syria’s scuds, “Israel’s” security and one big smokescreen
In the self-sensationalising world of modern media, some truths are better witnessed than told. Over the past fortnight, major media outlets have converged on Syria’s alleged delivery of scud missiles to the Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah. By examining how the story first came to limelight, as well as the manner in which media sources have uncritically covered the story, one can begin to notice the vastly degenerated state of today’s media and its deeply polarising effects.
On 11th April, Kuwaiti daily Al-Rai Al-Aam broke the ‘scud missiles’ story. Relying solely on American sources, the author Husain Abdul-Husain claimed that both western and Israeli intelligence had uncovered the training of Hezbollah resistance fighters in Syria in the use of scud and surface-to-air missiles. This, we are told, occurred some time during last summer. Subsequent to the alleged discovery, the article adds, Israel threatened Syria through official Turkish and Qatari channels warning against the transfer of either of the two armaments to Hezbollah.
Western coverage of the story has been an unquestioned regurgitation of the original claims made in the Al-Rai Al-Aam article. Further signified by an overriding infatuation with Israel’s security, political commentators have even sought to draw parallels between Saddam and the alleged Syrian scud missiles delivery. Amidst the suffocating miasma of yellow journalism redolent in western reporting, the parallel was not lost on Lebanese prime minister. Speaking to a group of Lebanese citizens in Rome, Saad Hariri noted: “All this is similar to what was said previously about the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, that were never found.”
Quite expectedly, not one mainstream media outlet dared make any mention of America’s pledge of roughly $3billion per annum in military aid to Israel. One does not require speculative reports published on Al-Rai Al-Aam to verify the above, nor does one require any superior intelligence to discern that the annual US ritual of rearming Israel constitutes an “equilibrium-breaking” military development. What is required, however, is the impossible: for leading western commentators to witness developments, even fleetingly, through the eyes of other than Israel.
And thus, one can produce a hefty list of ignored ‘strategic balance altering’ developments. The Obama administration’s decision in January of this year, for instance, to double US arms-stockpiles in Israel to a total sum of $800 million worth, which are to be used by the Zionist state in times of “emergency”, certainly fits the description of military “game-changers”.
All this is not surprising. As a rule of thumb, the media’s self-assumed monopoly of reserving big and frightening words like ‘WMDs’ for those classified as adversaries is to be assumed without need for explicit mention. Language in this sense is a tool to distort, not to explain; an instrument to erect separating walls, rather than build bridges of dialogue.
Notwithstanding issues of accuracy in the original article, a telling omission from western reporting was a clear failure to question the timing behind Syria’s alleged transfer of the scuds. Had leading media outlets adhered to even a diminished standard of objectivity, they would have no doubt stumbled upon Israeli provocations such as foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman’s impudent words directed at President Assad. In early February of this year, the harebrained right-wing zealot threatened Syria with regime change in a show of brazen chutzpah, which is in fact symbolic of how Israel views and applies itself in the regional context.
The brouhaha over Syria’s alleged transfer of scud missiles is designed to serve as one big smokescreen. It is now an open secret that Hezbollah is capable of striking Tel Aviv, and much further south. In mid-February of this year the resistance movement’s secretary-general, Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah, stated in very explicit terms that should Israel bomb the Dahiye suburbs of Beirut, Hezbollah would respond with strikes on Tel Aviv; blow for blow. Virtually the whole of Israel is within striking range of Hezbollah, just as every inch of the entire Middle East and afar into Europe is within range of Israel’s missiles – including, I should add, its nuclear arsenal.
The principle motives behind arousing whipped up media-frenzy over the scud missiles issue are multi-fold, but have little to do with so-called “equilibrium-breaking” weapons in the hands of the Lebanese resistance.
Both Israel and the US are seeking to detach Syria from the resistance-bloc constituted primarily of Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Hamas. Since the Clean Break strategy authored in 1996, Syria has been referred to as the lynchpin connecting Israel’s foes. Over the past year, US and Israeli experts have elevated the handling of the Syrian file to top-level priority within the Middle Eastern context.
On the precipice of Robert Ford’s confirmation as US ambassador to Syria, the emergence of the scud missiles allegations should be read as an instance of political arm wrangling. Admittedly, on this issue the Arab Center (alternatively referred to as the moderate-bloc) and Israel both share an interest in slowing down the rapprochement between Washington and Damascus, albeit for different reasons. Through the negative focus that has resulted from the alleged delivery of scud missiles, the US-Israeli axis aims to send a clear message to Damascus that its relationship with Hezbollah is a strategic liability. The thawing of ties between the west and Syria could in the future quite as easily regress due to its links to the resistance.
Secondly, Israel misses no chance to wave before the world the ubiquitous ‘S’ word in order to mask its repulsive settler-colonial project. By continually depicting itself as a nation terminally under threat, the Zionist state has sought to gain legitimacy and skewed sympathy.
In trail of Israel’s ever-rapacious “security” appetite, western commentators have overlooked gross violations of human rights and indeed war crimes. In this vein, Israel passed a military order on 13th April, which legalizes the deportation of thousands of Palestinians from their West Bank homes. Instead of highlighting the woes of a displaced nation – time and again – inflicted by a racist settler-colonial project, western journalists have instead zoomed in on an alleged scud missile delivery. Note, the word is alleged. As if to say, the Zionist state’s daily ethnic cleansing in Al-Quds of its Palestinian population is of no importance when placed against an alleged scud-missile delivery.
To fair-minded individuals, the media’s handling of the scud missiles story is representative of a hereditary bias in western reporting of the Middle East. The notion of double standards no longer captures the sheer immensity of this overriding prejudice. It would seem politics in the western hemisphere is all about recycling misnomer clichés, advancing age-old power-politics paradigms and bringing to bear its own sacred cows on the field of global politics.
Ali Jawad is a political activist and member of the AhlulBayt Islamic Mission (AIM).
No comments yet.
or go to
From the Archives
By Gilad Atzmon | November 21, 2009
‘Israel is the light unto the nations’ says the Torah. Indeed it is, and not just because the Torah says so. Israel is ahead of everyone else in many fronts. Take for instance, terrorizing civilian populations and practicing some of the most devastating murderous tactics upon elders, women and young.
The Jerusalem Post reported yesterday that the Chairman of NATO’s Military Committee, Admiral Giampaolo Di Paola, visited Israel earlier this week to study “IDF tactics and methods that the military alliance can utilise for its war in Afghanistan.” A senior Israeli defence official added “The one thing on NATO’s mind today is how to win in Afghanistan… Di Paola was very impressed by the IDF, which is a major source of information due to our operational experience.”
I would advise both the Israeli official and Admiral Di Paola to slightly curb their enthusiasm. … continue
Aletho News Exclusive Content
This article will examine some of the connections between the US and UK National Security apparatus and the appearance of the anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory beginning after the accident at Three Mile Island. … continue
Also by Aletho News:
September 19, 2011
March 8, 2011
January 2, 2011
October 10, 2010
July 5, 2010
February 25, 2010
February 7, 2010
January 5, 2010
December 26, 2009
December 19, 2009
December 4, 2009
May 9, 2009
- Algerian soldiers die in Kabylie ambush days after presidential election April 20, 2014
- Saudi Arabia confirms seven new MERS cases April 20, 2014
- Iraq attacks kill nine as suicide bombing hits Baghdad university April 20, 2014
- Two policemen killed by militants in Egypt April 20, 2014
- Israeli forces arrest 16 Palestinians after clashes in Jerusalem, Nablus April 20, 2014
- Lebanese in Qatar no longer threatened with deportation April 19, 2014
- Michel Aoun: The last strong presidential candidate April 19, 2014
- ESCWA’s proposal for Arab integration undermined by Israel April 19, 2014
- Four French journalists, abducted in June, found on Syria-Turkey border April 19, 2014
- Leftist Hamdeen Sabahi enters Egypt's presidential race April 19, 2014
Categories"Hope and Change" Aletho News Civil Liberties Corruption Deception Economics Environmentalism Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism False Flag Terrorism Full Spectrum Dominance Illegal Occupation Islamophobia Mainstream Media, Warmongering Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity Militarism Nuclear Power Science and Pseudo-Science Solidarity and Activism Subjugation - Torture Supremacism, Social Darwinism Timeless or most popular Video War Crimes Wars for Israel
Looking for something?
This site is provided as a research and reference tool. Although we make every reasonable effort to ensure that the information and data provided at this site are useful, accurate, and current, we cannot guarantee that the information and data provided here will be error-free. By using this site, you assume all responsibility for and risk arising from your use of and reliance upon the contents of this site.
This site and the information available through it do not, and are not intended to constitute legal advice. Should you require legal advice, you should consult your own attorney.
Nothing within this site or linked to by this site constitutes investment advice or medical advice.
Materials accessible from or added to this site by third parties, such as comments posted, are strictly the responsibility of the third party who added such materials or made them accessible and we neither endorse nor undertake to control, monitor, edit or assume responsibility for any such third-party material.
The posting of stories, commentaries, reports, documents and links (embedded or otherwise) on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such posted material or parts therein.
The word "alleged" is deemed to occur before the word "fraud." Since the rule of law still applies. To peasants, at least.
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more info go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
This is information for anyone that wishes to challenge our “fair use” of copyrighted material.
If you are a legal copyright holder or a designated agent for such and you believe that content residing on or accessible through our website infringes a copyright and falls outside the boundaries of “Fair Use”, please send a notice of infringement by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will respond and take necessary action immediately.
If notice is given of an alleged copyright violation we will act expeditiously to remove or disable access to the material(s) in question.
All 3rd party material posted on this website is copyright the respective owners / authors. Aletho News makes no claim of copyright on such material.
Visits Since December 2009
- 1,724,180 hits
Contact:atheonews (at) gmail.com
- Russia on Eastern Ukraine shooting: Kiev must fulfill Geneva de-escalation pledge April 20, 2014
- Israeli forces storm Aqsa compound, dozens injured and detained April 20, 2014
- UN envoy slams Israel’s ‘unacceptable’ police handling of ‘Holy Fire’ ritual in Jerusalem April 20, 2014
- An Eyewitness to the Syrian Rebellion: Father Frans in His Own Words April 20, 2014
- Profit from Crisis April 20, 2014
- The Coming US-Iran legal battle at the UN April 19, 2014
- As the Light Unto the Nations April 19, 2014
- US Nuclear Weapons Proliferation April 19, 2014
- Putin calls on EU for joint aid to Ukraine April 19, 2014
- Iran slams US court ruling to expropriate NY tower April 19, 2014
- Young Gilad (22 years old) in an Israeli Big Band April 20, 2014
- Jesus In Auschwitz For Easter (must watch) April 20, 2014
- An Interview With David Rovics April 19, 2014
- Jeffrey Blankfort - Are there Israel lobby gatekeepers and damage control squads on the Left? April 19, 2014
- Stephen Walt: The "special relationship" and what has changed since "The Israel Lobby" book April 18, 2014
TagsAfghanistan Africa al-Akhbar Al-Manar American Civil Liberties Union American Israel Public Affairs Committee Argentina Bashar al-Assad Benjamin Netanyahu Brazil Britain Canada Central Intelligence Agency China CIA Colombia East Jerusalem Egypt European Union FBI Federal Bureau of Investigation France Gaza George W. Bush Germany Gilad Atzmon Hamas Hebron Hezbollah Honduras Hugo Chávez Human rights India Intelligence International Atomic Energy Agency International Middle East Media Center International Solidarity Movement Internet Iran Iraq Iraq War Israel Israeli settlement Japan Jerusalem John Kerry Latin America Lebanon Libya Ma'an Mahmoud Abbas Middle East National Security Agency NATO New York Times NSA Obama Pakistan Palestine Palestinian prisoners in Israel Press TV Russia Sanctions against Iran Saudi Arabia South America Syria Turkey UK Ukraine United Nations United States USA Venezuela West Bank Zionism