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April 16, 2014 / 16 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Seymour Hersh’

Netanyahu to Tell Half the Truth and Gamble on the Consequences

Sunday, September 29th, 2013

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu arrived in the United States Sunday morning on his way to diplomatic charades with President Barack Obama on a stage where each player suffers consequences for telling the truth.

The Prime Minister also is up against a media that, according to Pulitzer Prize winner Seymour Hersh, is full of lies almost across-the-board and especially when it comes to reporting on President Obama.

The president set the agenda in his speech to the United Nations last week, when he said that the Iranian nuclear threat and the Israeli-Palestinian Authority dispute are the two biggest issues threatening world peace.

When he puts a nuclear bomb in the hands of the Ayatollahs on the same scale as Israel’s effort to remain a state in the face of Palestinian Authority demands, and gets away with it thanks to a cooperative media, there is a limit as to what “truths” Netanyahu can tell. If Obama had told the truth and said that the PA is a pimple and that Iran is a cancer, the world might be better place, but he might lose his Nobel Peace Prize.

As Prime Minister Netanyahu boarded his plane late Saturday night, he said, “One must talk facts and one must tell the truth. Telling the truth today is vital for the security and peace of the world and, of course, it is vital for the security of the State of Israel.”

That is a tall order.

Newly-elected Iranian president Hassan Rouhani played out his script excellently in the United Nations, praising the United States as a “great nation” and calling for negotiations over its nuclear program.

Most media lapped up the speech and went ga-ga over the fact that the President of the United States of America spoke directly with an Iranian president on the telephone for 15 minutes for the first time in years.

That is the truth.

It also is just about equally meaningless, but as Hersh said in a weekend interview with the London Guardian, The New York Times spends “so much more time carrying water for Obama than I ever thought they would.”

Concerning the media in general, Hersh said, “It’s pathetic, they are more than obsequious, they are afraid to pick on this guy [Obama].

“They [media]… work out how to re-elect the president.

“Do you think Obama’s been judged by any rational standards? Has Guantanamo closed? Is a war over? Is anyone paying any attention to Iraq? Is he seriously talking about going into Syria? We are not doing so well in the 80 wars we are in right now, what the hell does he want to go into another one for. What’s going on [with journalists]?”

When it comes to covering Israel, Hirsh’s comments are an understatement. Whatever truths Netanyahu will say will be met with the comebacks already stored in the “Screw Israel” folder.

The Guardian “revealed” Sunday that Prime Minister Netanyahu will hand over to President Obama new evidence that Iran is on its way to the Big Bomb.

Been there, done that. Israel has been disclosing evidence for years, and it only encourages the chorus to sing “engagement at any cost.”

Given the White House’s fiasco after President Obama said he would attack the Assad regime because of its  use chemical weapons, the Prime Minister knows darned well that Obama will guarantee that Israel that it has nothing to worry about. The United States is behind Israel. All the way – until push comes to shove.

Thoroughly condemned, and correctly so, by the media for making the United States look like a pussycat against Assad and Russia, President Obama stumbled on “engagement” with Iran as the perfect antidote for his lost prestige, and the heck with Israel. He will cross that bridge when he comes to it – or he won’t.

On the Iranian issue, Netanyahu will tell the truth. It will be printed in the newspapers the following day and will quickly be used to wrap the fish.

Netanyahu will be challenged, correctly, with the accusations that Israel has nuclear weapons, which of course exist, and he will have to put on some zany stunt as payment for keeping it an open secret.

Prime Minister Netanyahu will not dare tell the truth about the Palestinian Authority, which announced on Saturday it has put Haiti and Grenada in its pocket, stuffed with more than 130 countries that it says now recognize it is a country.

Revisiting Seymour Hersh’s Pollard Hit Piece

Wednesday, November 7th, 2007

The Monitor lately has been on the receiving end of a number of e-mails that either contain or link to a hit piece on Jonathan Pollard by investigative reporter Seymour Hersh that appeared nearly nine years ago in The New Yorker (Jan. 18, 1999 issue). While the article is not accessible on The New Yorker’s website (the archives section of which is almost non-existent), it’s easily found on the Internet.

The Monitor examined Hersh’s story when it was first published and came away severely unimpressed. Here’s how the critique looked back then:

One can agree or disagree with the proposition that Jonathan Pollard ought to serve out his life sentence for spying on behalf of Israel, but alarm bells should go off – on both sides of the argument – when someone like Seymour Hersh slithers out from under his rock to take up the cudgels for the anti-Pollard position.

In his lengthy New Yorker article, titled “The Traitor,” Hersh recycled several allegations first aired in his 1991 book The Samson Option: Israel’s Nuclear Arsenal and American Foreign Policy, the most serious of which is that an unknown quantity of the most highly-classified data stolen by Pollard ended up in Soviet hands.

The Samson Option was widely panned for its unsubstantiated charges and unseemly reliance on questionable sources. Hersh’s prime informant for the book’s most sensational claims was one Arie Ben-Menashe, an individual whom The Jerusalem Post labeled “a notorious, chronic liar” and whom journalist Steven Emerson described as “an abject liar” – and who indeed failed a lie-detector test administered by ABC News.

Another source for The Samson Option, a character named Joe Flynn, admitted that he’d deceived Hersh in exchange for money. According to the Near East Report, “After Flynn was exposed, Hersh said he regretted not checking his facts more carefully.”

Hersh first achieved notoriety in 1969 when, as a freelance journalist, he broke one of the biggest stories of the Vietnam War: the massacre of unarmed civilians by American soldiers in the South Vietnamese village of My Lai. Hired by The New York Times in 1972, he went on to cover (in some cases uncover) the CIA scandals that rocked Washington in the mid-1970’s.

But Hersh’s luster began to fade during his last few years at the Times as critics raised doubts about both his methods and his fairness. In Fit To Print, his 1988 biography of former Times executive editor A. M. Rosenthal, author Joseph Goulden wrote: “Rosenthal now concedes that he had serious second thoughts about some of Hersh’s reporting, even during the glory days of the 1970’s when his stories featured prominently on the Times’s front page.”

Hersh left the Times in 1979 and commenced work on a book about former secretary of state Henry Kissinger, whom Hersh made no secret of despising. When The Price of Power: Kissinger in the Nixon White House was published in 1983, The New Republic’s Martin Peretz wrote that “there is hardly anything [in the book] that shouldn’t be suspect.”

The late former attorney general John Mitchell (cited by Hersh as a major source) insisted that “almost every episode or statement on Kissinger ascribed to him by Hersh [was] a distortion, an exaggeration, a misinterpretation, or an expletive-deleted lie.”

More recently, while researching The Dark Side of Camelot, his 1997 debunking of the mythology surrounding John F. Kennedy, Hersh fell for the claims of a forgerer whose material would have been included in the book if not for a last-minute investigation by ABC News that cast doubts on the man’s story.

In his New Yorker piece on Pollard, Hersh detailed various scenarios involving Israel’s alleged transfer of pilfered U.S. material to the Soviet Union, only to lamely confess that his sources “stressed the fact that they had no hard evidence – no ‘smoking gun’ in the form of a document from an Israeli or a Soviet archive – to demonstrate the link between Pollard, Israel and the Soviet Union…”

Hersh also alleged that the late CIA director William Casey told an associate (unnamed, of course) of his knowledge that “the Israelis used Pollard to obtain our attack plan against the U.S.S.R. – all of it. The coordinates, the firing locations, the sequences. And for guess who? The Soviets.”

But Robert Gates, who was appointed Casey’s deputy in 1986, told Hersh that the director “had never indicated to him that he had specific information about the Pollard material arriving in Moscow.”

Furthermore, said Gates, “The notion that the Russians may have gotten some of the stuff has always been a viewpoint [italics added].”

On such slender reeds did Hersh rest his case against Pollard.

Snake repellent, anyone?

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/media-monitor/revisiting-seymour-hershs-pollard-hit-piece/2007/11/07/

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