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Name: Antony Loewenstein
Home: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
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Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Paying the price for a crazy war

My latest piece for Online Opinion - one of Australia's most popular e-journals of social and political debate - evaluates the long-term costs of the Iraq war and the embedded journalism that allows the slaughter to continue:

"Australia is inadequately served by its elected representatives. As [former] minister of defence, Robert Hill told us that “political progress is being made in Iraq” and leaving troops in Iraq was “contributing to [our] own security.” The facts contradict him and yet media interest barely registers. The Sydney Morning Herald still believes - according to its editorial on January 12 - the US 'hoped to create a stable, secular democracy [in Iraq]'. Readers should therefore presume had US planning been more efficient, the Iraqi people would be living in utopia. The fact untold thousands of Iraqis have been murdered since 2003 and tortured or targeted by US-backed Shiite militias, should be enough to cause reflection for even the most hardened chicken-hawk.

"Such false presumptions are the mainstay of the mainstream media and result in diminished democracy. Our mainstream media has never been more reviled and mistrusted. Why, for example, did a leading journalist from The Age recently travel to the US as a guest of the world’s leading military contractor, Lockheed Martin? Brendan Nicholson filed a report on January 7 about Australia's role in the US-led missile defence system. Propaganda was too kind a word."

My Online Opinion archive is here.

22 Comments:

Blogger Melanie said...

Antony, as for the bit about Jews being their own worst enemy and using Andrew Klavan as a another 'specimen', you might have wanted to do some fact checking.

He is baptized and a member of the Episcopal Church.

http://www.opinionjournal.com/taste/?id=110006071

Now go an re-read what he said and you may find that he is talking about you.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:08:00 pm  
Blogger Melanie said...

In case you have forgotten I was referring to this article:
http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/opinion/la-oe-klavan14jan14,1,925872.story?ctrack=1&cset=true

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:16:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Nice piece AL.

Weird about the Age reporter being shouted a trip by Lockheed Martin. What's the deal with that?

Melanie, wrong thread swetheart.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:19:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

Klavan isn't a Jew? Well, strike me down. Perhaps I should have made that a little clearer. A Christian Zionist, rabid Zionist nutter?
My mistake. He can still be kicking an own goal, darling. And he did.
Only dutiful little Zionists would think otherwise.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:20:00 pm  
Blogger Melanie said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:22:00 pm  
Blogger Melanie said...

You knew all along? Perhaps you should have made it clearer? hmmm.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:28:00 pm  
Blogger Antony Loewenstein said...

I should have. Point taken.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:31:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Fair enough Melanie,

I wasn't being derogatory. I'm just in an unusally cordial mood. ;-)

This wouldn't be the first time we've seen non-Jews trying to out Zionize the Zionists, if you'll excuse the expression. The Democratic leader, Nany Pelosi put on quite a performance at the last AIPAC Convention, when she harped on about the heartache of the settlers being displaced from Gaza. Even Shron, who was there to give a speech, didn't seem nearly as heart broken abotu it as she was.

I am impressed by your investigative skills re Klavan BTW.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:34:00 pm  
Blogger Melanie said...

why was my comment deleted? I thought it was fair.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:39:00 pm  
Blogger Melanie said...

addamo: Because any Jew reading it would have recognised that he wasn't Jewish so I needed to prove it.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:43:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Maybe it wasn't deleted. Sometimes I post and my comment does not appear. Try it again.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:45:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Melanie said...

"Because any Jew reading it would have recognised that he wasn't Jewish so I needed to prove it."

Yeah sure. But what gave it away?

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:46:00 pm  
Blogger Melanie said...

If you could bring yourself to thinking like a Jew and read it, you'll know what I mean.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 12:54:00 pm  
Blogger Melanie said...

addammo: "Maybe it wasn't deleted. Sometimes I post and my comment does not appear. Try it again."

No it was up there and then it went. I can't remember exactly what I said but I was making the point the whole point of the post was based on this guy being Jewish, and that rather than Jews being their own worst enemies, maybe Antony was his own worst enemy. Maybe my criticism was censored?
(this time I'm copying the post before I send it incase it gets lost again)

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 1:08:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Melanie,

Yes I saw that comment. Nothing untoward about it AFAIK.

To your credit, you have never posted anything that would warrant being deleted. When posts are deleted, there is a stamp left behind stating so.

Yes, copying is a good idea. I have lost some long ramblings of my own from quirks in the system.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 1:14:00 pm  
Blogger David said...

Ah, Antony, your previously mentioned piece in Online Opinion is a treasure trove of tortured syntax and contorted grammar. And that's not even mentioning your rank hypocrisy. If this is indicative of what awaits us with your book, we're all in for a real treat.

A few telling examples:

Such was the reality for extreme ideologues that had formulated plans to reshape the Middle East in the hallowed halls of academia and listened to the ramblings of Orientalist Bernard Lewis.

Eh, that should read extreme ideologues WHO formulated plans... Last time I checked, ideologues were people, and thus the pronoun who, rather than that applies. And your comment seems to indicate that those devious ideologues intended to reshape the Middle East in the hallowed halls of academia. I know Wolfie & co are pretty smart, but I fail to see how even they could move an entire geographic region into some buildings on a university campus.

This is simply crappy writing, and there's even less excuse for bad prose than there is for specious logic. And you claim to be a journalist? No wonder they canned your ass from the SMH's web supplement. Pure incompetence.

And then we get to your hypocrisy. You reprove the 4th estate for their failure to engage in the sort of on-the-ground reporting in Iraq that would provide a full picture of the debacle that you believe is unfolding. But Antony, that belief is predicated solely on second-hand evidence. You say:

The security situation is precarious, to be sure, but this is no excuse for ignoring the ever-deteriorating lives of Iraqis under occupation.

But I don't see you rectifying that lack by hopping on a plane to do a little first-hand reportage from beautiful downtown Falluja. You talk-the-talk real well. But you are more than a bit deficient in the walking-the-walk department.

You go on to declare:

It is no longer necessary to wish for the defeat of the US and its allies in Iraq; circumstances have seen to that.

Well I can't tell you how pleased I am to hear that you no longer yearn for the sight of dead Australian soldiers, Antony. But, of course, even when you did want to see dead diggers, you would never have had the guts to go over to the Middle East for a bit of trigger time yourself. You are very clearly a 'stay in the rear with the gear' kinda bloke.

More vintage Loewenstein hypocrisy:

The question remains how we can rescue the country [by this you mean Iraq] from the clutches of political leaders with no sense of history or cultural understanding.

we? You actually have the temerity to use the first person plural pronoun? Yet I don't see you doing any volunteering to rescue anything from anybody. Last I heard, you were still safe and sound in Sydney, pontificating from afar. And with your Hebrew illiteracy having already been amply demonstrated, allow me to express my profound scepticism as to whether you know anything of the Arabic language or culture.

So let me get this straight: Loewnstein, who doesn't speak a lick of any language of the region, wants to save Iraq from indigenous leaders who have more Arab cultural literacy in their fingernail clippings than Antony does in his entire body.

There's only one response to that: Ha!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006 10:59:00 pm  
Blogger Wombat said...

Daid,

Are you trying to get someone's atention? That's 3 times you poasted your diatribe.

We get the message mate.

How's you're non existent blog going?

Wednesday, January 25, 2006 2:07:00 am  
Blogger David said...

Quite non-existent. I'm having too much fun pissing on your leftist parade here.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006 8:22:00 am  
Blogger Wombat said...

Better improve your aim mate. So far you seem to be shooting blanks. Not your fault. It tends to happen to those who are factually challenged.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006 9:15:00 am  
Blogger neoleftychick said...

Antony

I am not a Jew either and I support Israel so what does that make me?

Thursday, January 26, 2006 12:46:00 am  
Blogger Wilbourne said...

You're getting quite a roasting in the forum for your Online Opinion piece. I look forward to you addressing the many concerns raised by posters there.

Thursday, January 26, 2006 3:21:00 pm  
Blogger Dave S. said...

neoleftychick said: "I am not a Jew either and I support Israel so what does that make me?"

A lefty who at least has SOME decency, common sense, and intellectual honesty?

Saturday, January 28, 2006 1:23:00 pm  

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