A guest post by Joe Geary
On April Fool’s Day 2013, the Guardian ran a spoof ad exhorting readers to buy its “Guardian Goggles”, which ended with the punchline “because life’s too short to think for yourself” (close to the Guardianista bone, there).
Well the joke turned out to be on the Guardian itself. Prolonged use of Guardian goggles causes chronic selective blindness. And one can only marvel at the number of issues that the Guardian, and its broadcasting wing, the BBC, two self-labelling “liberal” media organizations, have turned a blind eye to in recent years.
Most blatant of all is the blindness to any Palestinian culpability. Blind to the infighting, the torture and summary executions of fellow Palestinians in Gaza, and torture by the PA in the West Bank. Blind to Palestinian corruption, how the Palestinian Authority and Hamas both steal development aid from their own people, in one case to ‘develop’ Swiss bank accounts in the other to wage war on Jews. Blind, above all, to the genocidal intent of Hamas, even refusing to show the thousands of rockets fired at Israel before and during the 2014 conflict. Guardian and BBC reporters truly were Eyeless in Gaza. In this case the blindness is permanent, caused by the glaring light of their hostility to Israel.
Then there was the blind eye to Turkish President Recep Erdogan’s ever growing fanaticism and repression. He was our poster boy for how Islamism and liberal democracy were of course compatible. Who cares – among friends – how many Kurds he killed, luxurious palaces he commandeered, how many dissidents his government has waged war on. And he was the hero of the hour for provoking a spat with Israel over Turkey’s shambolic flotilla for Hamas. The eye is just now beginning to open as blood flows in the streets and ever more Turkish journalists end up in jail. Oh sweet Erdogan, where did it all go wrong? Why didn’t you just stick with picking fights with the Jews?
Oh and did I mention all the deaf ears? Stone deaf to the blood curdling threats of the Hanging Mullahs of Teheran to expunge Israel from the face of the Earth, or to the Iranian dissidents begging for attention to the plight of liberals in a theocratic slaughterhouse. Then, magically, all hearing is restored when Rouhani, the avuncular face of tyranny, promises to curb, for now, research into building the Zion-bomb. Drinks all round, if only fruit juices for the Iranians.
And those sounds of the Christians being slowly but surely driven out of their middle-eastern birthlands by Islamist violence and intimidation? All below the Guardian and BBC radar, trained, as ever, solely on Israel’s capital, Jerusalem or, as the BBC likes to call it, Tel Aviv.
When it comes to Israel’s so-called “crimes”, the building of protective fences, constructing housing for Jews near Jewish holy sites, or launching military strikes to stop genocidal terrorists, they are as many-eyed as a peacock. And when it comes to Israel’s virtues, say, the medical assistance and reconstruction aid it provides to those struck by tragedy, in Haiti, in Nepal, and even to the Palestinians themselves, the Guardian and the BBC are as keen-sighted as Polyphemus after his visit from Odysseus.
But no, it isn’t the goggles and the blinkers. Not even a visit to Specsavers would help. It’s deeply ingrained prejudice and ignorance, allied to opportunism (groveling to Hamas gets you access to Gaza). To paraphrase Paul Simon “they see what they want to see and disregard the rest” by which I think he meant “there are none so (selectively) blind as those who will not see”.