I had to remind myself as I was reading Harriet Sherwood’s latest Guardian entry – openly mocking the Israeli Prime Minister – that it was not published at ‘Comment is Free’, and that it is supposed to be a serious news report.
In ‘Binyamin Netanyahu’s UN bomb triggers derision and admiration’, September 30th, Sherwood – commenting on PM Netanyahu’s speech to the UN in which he used a diagram of a bomb to highlight Iran’s quest to build a nuclear device - writes:
“It was certainly explosive, but did it bomb? Binyamin Netanyahu‘s show-stopping stunt at the UN general assembly went instantly viral, with memes, remixes and scathing tweets spreading across the internet like shrapnel. But while the ridicule quota was high, there was also admiration.
Twenty-five minutes into his address, the Israeli prime minister reached under the podium and pulled out a folded card. “This is a bomb,” he announced – words which in other circumstances might have led to security guards tackling him to the ground.
It was, rather, a crude cartoon of a bomb, complete with fuse, which Netanyahu rather unnecessarily pointed out: “This is a fuse.” He then talked through the three stages of uranium enrichment necessary before it could become a real bomb.
Finally in a moment of eye-popping theatricality, he produced a marker pen. After a summer of prodding, pleading, wheedling and commanding the president of the United States to publicly declare a red line for Iran‘s nuclear programme, Bibi was taking over the drawing board.
“Where should the red line be drawn?” he asked with a rhetorical flourish. Head bent towards his diagram, pen in hand, he went on: “The red line should be drawn right here.” And there it was, a thick, shockingly bright red line, across the 90% mark on Iran’s nuclear bomb.”
Then, in an apparent attempt to capture the mood of the ‘progressive’ street, Sherwood adds:
“WE HAVE ACTUAL RED LINES,” tweeted the journalist Joseph Dana. “Netanyahu is beyond parody at this point.”
So it appears that Joseph Dana, at some point, was promoted to the position of “journalist” by the Guardian’s Jerusalem correspondent.
Dana, as we’ve noted previously, describes himself as a Jew who was brought up in America in a “Zionist indoctrination programme” but who was able to free himself from its iron grip. He lived in Israel for six years but later moved to Ramallah where, unrestrained by the stifling fumes of Jewish nationalism, he finally was free to explore his Jewish identity with his evidently philosemitic Palestinian friends.
Here’s the video. (H/T Richard Millett)
Dana’s keen journalistic instincts about Iran and Israel were on full display at the Aug. 14th book launch in Jerusalem for ‘After Zionism’, which I attended (and live Tweeted from). He claimed, during the Q & A, that the “Iranian nuclear issue is manufactured by Israel to divert attention away from the occupation, and the media falls for it.”
One might be tempted to characterize Dana as an anti-Zionist Jew “beyond parody”.