Published on June 5th, 2010 | by Ali Gharib7
Tax-Exempt US $$ Fund Tasteless Israeli Flotilla Satire
With nine dead in the Flotilla incident, among them an American citizen who was shot five times from a foot and a half away (including in the back and the back of the head), one might think that even a right-wing U.S.-based organization would restrain itself to a serious dialogue about what happened on the Mediterranean. Not so for the neocons.
Even if you’re a rightie who’s completely sold on the idea of some terrorists aboard the Flotilla, how utterly bereft of shame do you have to be to parlay the incident into a piece of satire propaganda? Apparently, you have to be Frank Gaffney, one of the most base war- and fear-mongers I’ve come across in my time tracking this crowd over the past few years.
As I’ve been made aware by Andrew Sullivan, it’s Gaffney’s D.C.-based Center for Security Policy (CSP), a tax-exempt 501(c)3 charity (PDF), that came up with the bright idea of funding fellow venom-spitter Caroline Glick‘s Hebrew-language satire site, Latma.
Last year, the website produced a not-very-funny video musical send-up of Rahm Emmanuel declaring “Juden Raus!” The phrase for “Jews Out!”, used by Nazis to flush Jews from their hiding places, was also a German board game introduced in 1936. In a post on her personal site linking to the video, Glick, the Jerusalem Post editor and columnist, notes that:
Latma is fully funded through generous donations from philanthropists to the Washington DC-based Center for Security Policy’s Middle East media program which I run in my capacity as the CSP’s Senior Fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs.
Since the Gaza Flotilla disaster, it’s been truly amazing to watch the both defensively frenzied and shamelessly aggressive campaign of exaggerations and flat-out fallacies coming from Israel and its staunchest defenders. But Glick took it to a whole new level with the Latma video portraying Turkish aid activists as a “con[ning] the world.” In addition to the usual cheap production value, all of the actors singing the song have Israeli accents. The video, of course, was released only two days after Israeli commandos dropped onto the Mavi Marmara and, either just before or just after their landing, shot and killed nine people including a 19-year-old U.S. citizen.
Take a look at Glick’s video for yourself.
According to Noam Sheizaf’s Promised Land blog, the tasteless video was sent around to reporters by Government Press Office honcho Daniel Siman, who minutes later declared the e-mail a “mistake.”
Mondoweiss picked up on the sheer chutzpah of the government of Israel and Israeli rightists like Glick who mock a tragedy like the one early Monday morning just as Israel is getting more and more isolated. Adam Horowitz delightfully calls his post “We Aren’t the World,” a much more clever play on the original song title than Glick’s “We Con the World.”
While the de facto U.S. taxpayer-subsidy for producing vile internet propaganda videos abroad is appalling, maybe it’s better that Israeli rightists and their neocon allies in the U.S. stick to this musical method of venting their repugnant frustrations. If, instead of the recording studio and editing bay, the producers took to the streets, it might end up looking like this.