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Media Stand Fast Over Painful Conflict in the Gaza Strip

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During the last few days a pitched battle began, briefly raged, and hopefully ended in the Southeast area of the Gaza Strip. It comes to light that the Hamas representatives of the Muslim viewpoint were incited to violence by the ongoing closure of borders of the Gaza Strip by Israelis and Egyptians, making the free movement of people and goods impossible. These borders have been sealed on and off since 2007; they are now open. Intense shelling during this short-lived battle resulted in the deaths of civilians , including women and children, as well as many uninvolved civilian men on both sides.

It speaks well of America, and the American media, that CNN, a principle news source, seemed to take the unusual course of sympathizing with the Islamic population of the Gaza Strip. American news icons placed themselves within Gaza, in harm’s way, and covered the real time reports of incoming shelling, destruction, pain, and death. Other media outlets were also objective and impartial. Knowledgeable readers are familiar with such details as the anti-missile missiles and the role of the Egyptian government. It wasn’t lost on the media that this brief conflict offered a preview of what a war involving Iran might be like.

Knowledgeable readers are also aware of US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s important and praiseworthy role in the peace negotiations during these final days of her term in that high office. Recent media reports indicate that it is likely that current US Ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, will fill that vacancy during the administration’s second term, despite criticism and alleged incidents in her recent history. Some observers have been outspoken about Rice.

We cannot help but wonder what hold Ambassador Rice has over the Obama administration. It was Rice who boycotted the Iranian president when he spoke in September to the UN General Assembly. While the administration was and is characterized by a dedication to diplomacy vis-à-vis threats of war and destruction, Rice nevertheless was able to coerce the American UN delegation to walk out on an important world leader. Erin Pelton, a spokesman for Ambassador Rice, said in a statement, “Over the past couple of days, we’ve seen Mr. Ahmadinejad once again use his trip to the UN not to address the legitimate aspirations of the Iranian people, but to instead spout paranoid theories and repulsive slurs against Israel.” As it turned out, Ahmadinejad’s words to the world body were neither repulsive not threatening. In fact he spoke eloquently for peace, patience,and wisdom. “It’s particularly unfortunate that Mr. Ahmadinejad will have the platform of the UN General Assembly on Yom Kippur, which is why the United States has decided not to attend,” Pelton said. While we appreciate the Israeli sensitivities, we abhor the unwillingness to listen, an unwillingness reminiscent of the bloody and venomous George W. Bush administration.

So, then, we question the president for having failed to address the walkout. We praise the news media, and CNN, and we praise Secretary Clinton, even as we despair at the pain and suffering of the victims of combat.

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About John Lake

John Lake had a long and successful career in legitimate and musical theater. He moved up into work behind the camera at top motion pictures. He has done a smattering of radio, and television John joined the Blogcritics field of writers owing to a passion for the liberal press, himself speaking out about the political front, and liberal issues. Now the retired Mr. Lake has entered the field of motion picture, television, and video game (now a daily gamer!) critique. His writing is always innovative and immensely readable!
  • Igor

    John, when you note that “It was Rice who boycotted the Iranian president when he spoke in September to the UN General Assembly” I can’t help but think that boycott was at Obamas direction. Rice simply doesn’t have discretion to make such a decision. So I wouldn’t hold that against her: she was taking orders.

    So then the question becomes “why did Obama order Rice to boycott”, which is easy to explain in light of two considerations:

    (1) Israels interests are vigorously anti-Iran and that boycott re-enforces our position with Israel.

    (2) the boycott makes clear to Iran that they have a threshold to overcome to get in our good graces and get relief for their domestic boycott, which is really hurting.

    This is what you must do when you choose diplomacy over arms. It’s horrible, and it’s bullying, but the alternative is war, which is much worse.

  • John Lake

    Obama ran in 2108 on principles which included a willingness to discuss with important leaders. You could see it in his visage as he was anxious to begin, as he took the presidency.
    The Obama administration has the highest regards for Israel, but also feels a responsibility to, and a recognition of, the people of Palestine. They are seeking broader recognition by world bodies, and speak like educated people.
    Susan Rice chose to walk out, as did Canada, I remember, because a high Jewish holy day was involved. This seems a step back toward more sabre rattling, and threats, and away from what should be modern government.
    Obama hasn’t to my knowledge commented.
    Also not mentioned is the fact that the embassy in Benghazi requested more security, but the local person, a woman named Lamb, I believe, didn’t agree, and failed to forward the request.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Apparently both John and President Obama have access to a time machine that transports them at will 96 years into the future, to a time when the two-term limit for presidential office has been abolished.

  • John Lake

    I can still recall believing that the world could not possibly reach 1984. And if it did, it would be so different, so unrecognizable!
    Will we have presidents, or will we be under the unlimited authority of oil barons?