The people at the Medialens website (not to be confused with
Media Hell) are busy smearing George Monbiot again. Examples
include the claim that Monbiot is "brainwashed" and
that he "promotes mass murder".
Of all the journalists one could criticise over the Iraq war,
they target Monbiot. Seems insane to me, as does the nature of
their attacks. Monbiot "promoting mass murder"? What
universe are these people living in?
The two who run Medialens wrote that Monbiot was "swept
along in the wake of that propaganda" (ie the "establishment
propaganda [that] made the need to take action to deal with Saddam
Hussein’s regime seem real, urgent and important").
To come to this bizarre conclusion they must have completely
disregarded most of Monbiot's writing on the Iraq war. The only
other explanation is that there are two different
George Monbiots, and that Medialens is not referring to the one
I'm familiar with.
For example, to take a few quotes at random from Monbiot's articles:
"[T]his will be a war without even the flimsiest of pretexts:
an unprovoked attack whose purpose is to enhance the wealth
and power of an American kleptocracy. Far from promoting peace,
it could be the first in a series of imperial wars."
No task is more urgent than to expose the two astonishing lies
contained in George Bush’s radio address on Saturday,
namely that “the United States does not desire military
conflict, because we know the awful nature of war” and
“we hope that Iraq complies with the world’s demands.”
Mr Bush appears to have done everything in his power to prevent
Iraq from complying with the world’s demands, while ensuring
that military conflict becomes inevitable.
The United States, in other words, appears rapidly to be monopolising
the world’s remaining oil. Every government knows this.
Ours appears to have calculated that the only way it can obtain
the energy required to permit the men and women of Middle England
to stay in their cars is to appease the United States, whatever
the cost may be. Britain’s role in the impending war is
that of the egret in the crocodile’s mouth, picking the
scraps of flesh from between its teeth.
The latest attack on Monbiot isn't an isolated occurrence. Medialens
has previously written that Monbiot has a very poor record when
it comes to criticising the liberal media. I illustrated what
nonsense this is by posting a long list of examples of Monbiot
criticising the Guardian, Observer, BBC and other ostensibly "liberal"
outlets. (I posted this list at Medialens - it was my last post
there, as I was immediately thereafter prevented from posting).
I think the reason that Medialens returns again and again to
target Monbiot has nothing to do with rational argument. If being
rational had anything to do with it, they'd concentrate their
attention on the many others in the media more deserving of criticism.
At exactly the point when the antiwar movement (and the larger
movement against the authoritarian takeover of our lives) most
needs unity, along comes Medialens to sow the seeds of
division. It's time to learn from the past. This kind of thing
has always hurt the antiwar campaign.