Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Straining


Headline of the Day: NYT: “U.S. Strains to Stop Arms Flow.” Given that the US is by far the largest purveyor of arms in the world (a fact which makes a belated appearance in the story’s 7th paragraph), this headline produced in my mind the unfortunate image of Uncle Sam on the toilet, shitting out an unstoppable diarrhoeal flow of weaponry. Now that image is in your head too – you’re welcome.

That 7th paragraph notes that the US “has drawn criticism” for starting an arms race in the Middle East with its bounteous provision of weaponry to Israel and Saudi Arabia, “But it has also taken on a leading role as traffic cop”. But? The NYT persists in seeing a contradiction where there is none, presenting a narrative in which the US is bravely and benevolently attempting to restore sanity to the world, where in fact the massive flow of arms from the United States is part and parcel of the policy of denying to others, such as the Palestinians of Gaza, the means of defending themselves. Honestly, this is so obvious that I feel silly even having to point it out, but it does seem to have eluded the Times.

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