The Magazine

Jimmy Carter, New York Times, and more.

Apr 10, 2006, Vol. 11, No. 28 • By THE SCRAPBOOK
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If you're nonetheless inclined to give the Times the benefit of the doubt, consider a contrasting article published by the Times two days after it mocked the process of exploiting the Iraqi documents on the web. "On Web, Error is Uncovered Through Relentless Pursuit," ran the headline over a piece from John Broder. The article recounts how Internet sleuths showed that a photograph on the website of a Republican congressional candidate was "a fraud." The candidate had posted a picture of what an accompanying note said was a peaceful Baghdad neighborhood. It turns out to be suburban Istanbul, a fact uncovered by a blogger. The article quotes USC professor Martin Kaplan (not identified as the former chief speechwriter for Vice President Walter Mondale) who gushes about the possibilities of group investigations on the Internet. "There's a reserve army of unpaid researchers ready to mobilize at a moment's notice," he said. Indeed.

Hamas in Power

Here's Sarah El Deeb of the Associated Press, reporting last Tuesday on the Palestinian Legislative Council meeting at which the new Hamas-led government's 25-member cabinet won an overwhelming formal vote of approval:

[Incoming Palestinian prime minister Ismail] Haniyeh toned down Hamas' violent ideology, saying he was not interested in perpetuating the cycle of violence with Israel. . . . In Gaza City, Hamas lawmakers broke into chants of "God is Great" after parliament voted 71-36, with two abstentions, to approve the new lineup. Palestinian legislators swarmed Haniyeh to congratulate him. . . . Haniyeh said Tuesday that he intends to push for an independent Palestinian state with its capital in Jerusalem and the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes in what is now Israel. Those demands are far more moderate than Hamas' traditional call to replace Israel with an Islamic state.

Note, please, Ms. El Deeb's casually tossed off reference to "what is now Israel." Then have a look, courtesy of the Middle East Media Research Institute, at a transcript of what actually happened immediately after the parliamentary vote in question--the one where Ismail Haniyeh is reported by AP to have "toned down" his group's traditionally violent rhetoric:

Parliamentary Speaker Aziz Dweik: The 10th Palestinian Government, headed by the Palestinian prime minister, brother Ismail Haniyeh, has gained the absolute majority of the votes of the Legislative Council members . . .

Hamas MP: Allah Akbar, Allah be praised.

Other MPs: Allah Akbar, Allah be praised.

MP: Allah is our goal.

Other MPs: Allah is our goal.

MP: The Koran is our constitution.

Other MPs: The Koran is our constitution.

MP: The Prophet Muhammad is our model.

Other MPs: The Prophet Muhammad is our model.

MP: Jihad is our path.

Other MPs: Jihad is our path.

MP: Death for the sake of Allah is our most lofty aspiration.

Other MPs: Death for the sake of Allah is our most lofty aspiration.