I’ve been to Breitbart.com exactly one time in my life and it was today, as I was tracking down a story for a friend who read that President Obama had spoken out against Israel at the United Nations yesterday.
The truth is that nothing of the sort happened and this is all some sort of bizarre game of telephone. But I can see why conservatives who read Breitbart.com or the National Review might think that Obama, despite all his rhetoric to the contrary, has turned on Israel.
Because that’s exactly what these websites want their readers to think.
The story on Breitbart.com, which references the original story at the National Review, is titled “Obama Backs Israel-Bashing at the UN.”
Here’s how it begins:
Anne Bayefsky of National Review notes that the Obama administration has effectively backed an extraordinary session at the UN Security Council today, in which the United Nation’s High Commissioner for Human Rights, the notoriously anti-Israel Navi Pillay, will brief the Council on the subject of Israel—and Israel alone. The U.S. failed to veto the session, which was scheduled in order to give the Council cover to deal with the atrocities being committed by Syria at this very moment—a crisis that has nothing to do with Israel whatsoever.
So, if you’re following along closely, you’ll see that because the U.S. didn’t veto a special session of the Security Council, it apparently means that the administration “has effectively backed” an anti-Israel meeting.
Here’s what actually happened, from the equally-histrionic National Review article:
The Security Council has not acted on Syria since an April 21, 2012, resolution, which sent unarmed observers over to watch the bloodshed. France wanted a high commissioner briefing on Syria to generate more noise. Council member Pakistan said no, unless Israel was on the chopping block, too. The Russians also said no, unless Libya was on the table. Russia seeks to use the mess in that country to obstruct stronger measures on Syria.
At this point in the diplomatic game, the Obama administration could have insisted that Israel not be sacrificed as the quid pro quo for paying due attention to the Syrian carnage.
If that sounds like the Obama administration backing an anti-Israel session, then I think we live on different planets.
For confirmation of my alternate planets hypothesis, I recommend taking a look at some of the comments about this piece on Breitbart.com:
So that’s 21 “likes” for the comment about understanding how stupid Jews could march to their deaths during the Holocaust and 28 “likes” for the comment about lynching President Obama. Just above these, not captured in my screen grab, is the comment “Like moma always said… Muslim is, as muslim does! -Forest f’n Gump,” which has 47 “likes.”
On the one hand, then, there’s a whole lot of hatred and willful stupidity from the American people that underlies all of this nonsense. On the other hand, conservative websites like Breitbart.com and the National Review, written and edited by people who ought to know better, are just openly encouraging as much hatefulness and stupidity as possible in the run-up to November.
It’s hard to imagine that anyone could think this is good for us, that this is what political discourse ought to look like.