Press, lies and videotape
By Lisa Fabrizio
So he's back, I suppose; Osama bin Laden. And boy, do we need him for many reasons, not the least being that he helps us draw some interesting comparisons. Many have pointed out the similarity between bin Laden's comments and those of certain members of the Democratic left, but there's more to it than mere words. They have a commonality as regards methodology as well.
While it's true that the words of the head of al-Qaida read like a socialist manifesto--dire warnings regarding global warming, the evils of corporate interests and the dreary invocation of the Vietnam War--the most amazing similarity is bin Laden‘s near-total disregard for the truth combined with an almost eerie confidence that this will be ignored by America's leftist media.
Like a Democratic congressman trying to reconcile his ‘support' for our troops while regaling his listeners with tales of their barbarity and failures, bin Laden's latest is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. Yet, typical of the media coverage was CBS shouting, "Bin Laden Expert: He's Winning," while the unbiased folks over at AP chose to focus, not on the ravings of a cold, calculating killer, but on the "taunting" and "provocative" manner in which the Bush White House dealt with the issue.
Of course, there are reports that it is not the real bin Laden on the video, but an imposter who is dreadfully in need of some tonsorial advice. Maybe he and the former junior senator from North Carolina can exchange tips on hair coloring and "the greed and avarice of the major corporations and their representatives."
So was it really bin Laden, or, as the UK's Telegraph suspects, was it actually "Azzam the American," Adam Gadahn? Unlike his fellow Californian Johnny Walker Lindh, who's currently doing 20 years in a maximum security prison for serving with the Taliban army, al-Qaida's Gadahn has the distinction of being the only American charged with treason since 1952.
And he's a real cutie pie this Gadahn, having appeared on previous al-Qaida propaganda videos warning his former countrymen that "you and your people will - Allah willing - experience things which will make you forget all about the horrors of September 11th, Afghanistan and Iraq and Virginia Tech."
That a 28-year old heavy-metal loser like Gadahn can so quickly become a major force in al-Qaida is no more a mystery than how a 30-something nobody like Markos "Kos" Moulitsas could do the same in the Democratic Party; youth in the service of propaganda is a powerful tool and the media love it.
But either Gadahn is the voice on the latest tape--although some have noticed that the video freezes for around 10 minutes during the ranting on current topics--or bin Laden is as addled as the Democrats who unanimously endorsed General Petraeus short months before branding him a lying puppet last week.
The rambling bin Laden denounces not only "major corporations" and "neoconservatives," he delivers a queerly disjointed history of the Vietnam War, promotes conspiracy theories and blasphemes Christianity--sound familiar? But the most common goal of both al-Qaida and Democrats remains defeating George W. Bush. Don't forget the video released by bin Laden right before the elections, in October, 2004. In clear defiance of U.S. campaign finance reform laws, he managed to spew gems worthy of Chuck Schumer:
Media reaction? Well, try this from Walter Cronkite: "So now the question is basically right now, how will this affect the election? And I have a feeling that it could tilt the election a bit. In fact, I'm a little inclined to think that Karl Rove, the political manager at the White House, who is a very clever man, he probably set up bin Laden to this thing."
The lesson is, that the lies and distortions of anyone will be tolerated by much of the media, if they are in the service of left-wing causes. Yet, both congressional Democrats and bin Laden, although prone to using similar methods, might soon be facing opposite horns of the same dilemma: victory in Iraq. The difference is that although it would be a big defeat for both of them, some of them will technically be on the ‘winning' side.