24 augustus 2005

A new round of America bashing (De andere kijk)

The past few days, the United States (government) – again – got the usual treatment from the MSM.

First of all, there was Pat Robertson, a conservative evangelist, who said that killing Hugo Chavez, the president of Venezuela, wouldn’t be a bad idea. This evening, at the 7 o’clock news, there was much fuss about the fact that the US government didn’t condemn Robertson’s remarks.

Why should it? Was Robertson wrong by saying that Chavez is not particularly friendly to the US, that he is wrecking the Venezuelan economy (by squandering the windfall created by booming oil prices) and that he (together with his pall Fidel Castro, the dictator of Cuba) has turned Venezuela into a platform to spread his Chavista revolution across the Latin-American continent. I don’t think so.

It is a bit ironic then that the United States consumes two thirds of Venezuelan oil exports and de facto supports the Chavez government. 1.6 million barrels a day at a current price of about 66$ equal an annual revenue of about 39 billion $. Compare that to the 2,6 billion $ of US aid to Israel.

But apparently it is not enough that the US government did say that it has no plans to kill Chavez and that, by the way, doing so would be illegal. How much more do you need? However, that will not suffice to ease the worries about ‘US imperialism’ of journalists like the author of the article from AFP in Flemish newspaper De Tijd, who bluntly stated that Washington was behind the failed coup against Chavez in April 2002 and behind the big strikes from December 2002 to February 2003. Where is the evidence, please?

Flemish newspapers should be more careful in their selection of stories from other newspapers or news agencies. Yesterday, another newspaper, Gazet van Antwerpen, quoted a story from The Guardian, that said that the Iraqi city of Haditha has become the new Fallujah for Zarqawi, his new model for the caliphate-to-be. The past record of The Guardian has not been that excellent lately as it has published articles from Islamists and Al Qaeda terrorists, and as Bill Roggio notes, also this article raises some doubts. And even if it were true, a bit of perspective offers some positive.

Maybe we should send our press corps a copy of this book (hat tip: Witte Sokken).

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