The Gaza Bombshell

Recently uncovered evidence shows that at the highest level of American leadership there were plans to spark Palestinian civil war. Read more in Vanity Fair’s The Gaza Bombshell: Politics & Power:

po01x_gaza0804.jpg After failing to anticipate Hamas’s victory over Fatah in the 2006 Palestinian election, the White House cooked up yet another scandalously covert and self-defeating Middle East debacle: part Iran-contra, part Bay of Pigs. With confidential documents, corroborated by outraged former and current U.S. officials, David Rose reveals how President Bush, Condoleezza Rice, and Deputy National-Security Adviser Elliott Abrams backed an armed force under Fatah strongman Muhammad Dahlan, touching off a bloody civil war in Gaza and leaving Hamas stronger than ever.

If we expect leaders of other nations to be held to international law, we should expect the same scrutiny for our own leaders. I would love to see the lot of them facing a tribunal in The Hague; there must be some kind of consequences for these types of actions, some kind of justice.

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Beatles space broadcast risks alien attack – Telegraph

Beatles space broadcast risks alien attack – Telegraph

No, for real, y’all.

The funniest part is the time-traveler headline:

Adam Curtis Documentaries

Tony has really outdone himself by posting a series of excellent BBC documentaries that will keep me busy for a good while. Tony astutely posits:

Adam Curtis’ interpretation of current events viewed through a historical and political lens is a tour de force in explaining the absurdity and cognitive dissonance of our current reality.

How media has failed us

I think I (and many others) have made the point before that our major media outlets have failed us in tremendously significant ways. Consistently the only accurate, in-depth, intelligent reporting I see is from PBS, NPR, or other countries. Part of me wishes I had pursued a career in journalism so that I could somehow make a positive impact in the field, rather than just rail against it weakly (though that’s most likely what I would have done from the inside, as well).

See, big media needs to sell ads to survive. To sell (the right) ads, they have to meet certain ratings and demographic numbers. To draw in those numbers, a lot of work goes into targeting audiences, a lot of market research. Market research is a process of distillation, a precision instrument. When you’re honing in on your target, there’s no room for externalities. When you’re drawing in the subject, you can’t risk boring them with depth or complex discourse. You’ve got to offer the most stories with the highest impact in the least amount of time – I hear CNN is now advertising more stories per hour:

But I digress. The real point of this post was to link to this article, which offers insight into the inner workings of a major network. It sheds light both on its failure to uphold the standards of old media and to keep up with new media. I love the way the article opens, so I’ve quoted that as well as some other salient points (after the jump): Continue reading

The Assassination of Benazir Bhutto

The New York Times has a photo story with images leading up to and immediately following Bhutto’s assassination. The images are shocking and haunting, but they are an important testament to her dedication and sacrifice, as well as that of her supporters.

[There is audio during the slide show – it’s worth listening to; via]