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A Partisan Beheading?

I found the blogosphere's response to the Nick Berg story interesting.

Kevin put the link up to the video and I put it on one of my extra servers. That started a flood of activity. As you can see below we got 17 trackbacks (and counting) and an Instalanche for good measure.

But I noticed something about the links... With the notable exception of Oliver Willis not a single major* left-wing blog linked it. The answer was obvious of course, the lefties hate Kevin because he scares them so they would be linking to the video on a left wing site... Right? Right?

So I took a stroll.

Ted, over at Crooked Timber, was still beating the Abu Ghraib drum but acknowledged as an afterthought that he thought the beheading was bad.

Kevin Drum did call it barbaric but then went on to lament that it might make us dedicated to winning the war on terror and of course found time to blame us for Abu Ghraib.

Matthew Yglesias was imitating the 3rd monkey. If there was any evil in it, he wasn't going to speak about it. You would think he would have been moved enough to at least mention it.

Josh Marshall thought he would make a better third monkey than Matt.

Atrios just could not bring himself to mention how Nick Berg was slaughtered but blamed the whole thing on George Bush.

Kos had a post titled "Why Berg was Murdered" and his answer was "The neocons WANTED it this way."

Not a single lefty site linked to the video. I was struck by one thing surfing lefty sites. The anger and animosity for the beheading was not aimed at the guy with the knife but at George Bush.

So I went and looked at right wing sites...

[BTW The Ecosystem was down so I might have missed some big names on either side as I did this from memory.]

Andrew Sullivan took turns first bashing Al Qeada and then the media and then Al Qeada again. His outrage quotient was pretty high. Called Al Qeada "dumb" and trashed the media for not putting out the link to the original site.

LGF OK I did not go... They were all over it, trust me. (There were multiple links to the video earlier in the day in the comments.)

Stephen Green wanted to know, "Where's the outrage over this story?" and in a later post said it should get the same media as the prison abuse story.

James Joyner was uncharacteristically late on this story but characteristically compendious. [update James linked it when it woke up.]

Michele gave us a reminder who the enemy was and what kind of people animals they were. Video link (to someone else hurmphf ;)

Glenn Reynolds Has his say and links to the video.

Wizbang! Well, CHECK! And a recursive check at that!

A clear majority All but one of the right-wing blogs linked to the video.(or said the media should have)

So there you have it... A partisan beheading. If the lefties even mentioned it, they downplayed it and could only muster a sense of outrage at George Bush. The folks on the right were far more outraged and actually pointed their outrage at the murderers.

Interesting.

UPDATE: Willis, in a later post, blames Bush too. OK so he batted .500.

UPDATE 2: James Joyner linked it when it woke up this morning.


* I followed all of the trackbacks and I saw a few of the linkers were not exactly right wingers, but I'm limiting my scope to the major guys for now. If you felt slighted in some way, I apologize, I did my best considering it is 3 AM. If you feel you deserve Oliver Willis type kudos, leave a comment and I'll update the post.


TrackBack

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference A Partisan Beheading?:

» blogoSFERICS linked with Wizbang Is All Over the Nick Berg Murder

» On The Third Hand linked with Roundup on the murder of Nick Berg:

» Backcountry Conservative linked with Nick Berg Beheading Video

» PoliBlog linked with Abu Ghraib and Berg

» Pennywit linked with Of Rage and Sorrow

» Drink this... linked with Outrage over the beheading of this...

» The Southern California Law Blog linked with Six Pix from SoCal

» eTalkinghead linked with Kerry blames Bush for Iraq abuse

» Mind of Mog linked with The Infamous Beheading Vid

Comments (48)

Well, at least Kos didn't s... (Below threshold)

Well, at least Kos didn't say "Screw 'em"

Well, he might have, but who can rely on it staying there?

Beat ya to the Screw Him re... (Below threshold)

Beat ya to the Screw Him reference.

I didn't link to the video ... (Below threshold)

I didn't link to the video except indirectly (I linked to the LGF thread).

Paul-You won't fin... (Below threshold)

Paul-

You won't find a link from lefty sites nor will you hear an apology from any Muslim states nor will you hear a word of sympathy from "swimming Teddy". There is a reason.

The left thought they had finally found the silver bullet that would take Bush down. Berg puts a crimp in that.

...And you won't hear any c... (Below threshold)
Rodney Dill:

...And you won't hear any commentary about how this is damaging to the Muslim cause, and which Muslim leaders/clerics should resign because of it.

Paul,God forbid th... (Below threshold)

Paul,

God forbid that I should "bang the drum" about Abu Gharib, but the original post that you're pointing to was put up before I read about the beheading. Not to mess up your theory or anything.

Ted you just damned yoursel... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Ted you just damned yourself.

So after you heard about the beheading it did not warrant its own post you just tacked on an update to something you already wrote?

Yeah man, you are were just a lump of seething rage.

Hell, you just proved my theory.

I'm not exactly a major lef... (Below threshold)

I'm not exactly a major lefty blog (only at Slithering Reptile level), but I'm what you might call saddened by the video, rather than outraged. I linked to Hannity's grab of the video, rather than yourself.

Why am I saddened by the beheading, but outraged by Abu Ghraib? Part of it is a subtle racism -- I expect Americans to be civilized, but I've learned to expect the worst from Islamic fundamentalists.

I'm also outraged over Abu Ghraib because the men and women who abused the prisoners were representing me when they did it ... and I rather resent that.

That's a fairly decent size... (Below threshold)

That's a fairly decent sized disconnect right there.

Christopher:Could ... (Below threshold)

Christopher:

Could you elucidate please?

When the disparity between ... (Below threshold)

When the disparity between the conduct is as stark as it is here, to draw an equally large disparity in your reaction to it (but in the OPPOSITE direction) displays at best, a moral compass that isn't quite calibrated properly.

Whether it's from party loyalty or something else, I will not speculate, merely noting the disconnect between the conduct and the reaction to it.

Funny how you don't mention... (Below threshold)
truth:

Funny how you don't mention how the right-wing didn't have a role in this:

[The rest of this was snipped by the editor. Paul, not Kevin.]

I'm all for heathy debate. I've argued that, to a point, partisanship is a good thing.

However, I'm not going to let whacky conspiracy theories about the right-wing having this guy killed get any ink here.

Keep the tin-foil hat stuff at Indy and DU.

I'll forward the text to Kevin and give him the final say.

Paul

Your note is, well, noted. ... (Below threshold)

Your note is, well, noted. I think that my reaction has less to do with my party identification than with my nation-state identification.

When confronted with reprehensible conduct of people with whom I identify -- that is, American soldiers -- I have a great deal of anger toward them because they're part of the same group that I am. I don't consider myself a person who would abuse a prisoner in my care, so when I find somebody with whom I might identify (and American) conduct himself in such a manner, I have a visceral reaction because that conduct is toing to be imputed to me as an American.

There's also the novelty/shock factor -- I usually consider my fellow Americans not to be the sort who would indulge in that sort of behavior, so my emotional reaction is incredibly intense.

The Berg execution, on the other hand, elicits sadness and disappointment from me chiefly because I see it as a continuation of existing hostilities -- after Pearl, suicide bombers, and Fallujah, I have been conditioned to expect Islamic extremists to act as the individuals in that video act.

Make no mistake, however -- in both cases, I expect the people who perpetrated the abuses to be punished appropriately. I expect the Abu Ghraib soldiers to be disciplined -- probably through prison and expulsion from the service -- and their commander to be reprimanded. I also expect my government to evaluate its policies and determine why the Abu Ghraib guards believed their behavior was acceptable.

I also expect the Berg executioners to be punished. I expect them either to die on the field of battle or, if they are captured, for them to be put on trial, their guilt to be ascertained, and a penalty -- probably execution or life imprisonment -- to be extracted.

Why on earth did you sugges... (Below threshold)

Why on earth did you suggest that I "lamented" the idea that it would make us dedicated to beating the terrorists? I meant no such thing.

My point was clear: barbaric acts like this will not accomplish al-Qaeda's aims of beating us. It will just make us mad. Likewise, barbaric acts on our part won't help us win. How did you manage to extract a partisan point from that?

Most of us have watched tho... (Below threshold)
Fritz:

Most of us have watched those science fiction movies in which an aliens from another planet invade and suddenly all of the people of the world forget their political and religious differences and unite to defeat a common enemy.

Well, the civilized world has been invaded by a monster that is so evil and dangerous it may as well be from a different planet. Yet, we still continue to let our political and religious difference stand in the way of uniting against Islamic terrorists.

Frankly, I think that if invaders from outer space did attack us, someone would point a finger at George Bush. Someone else would find a way to bring their opinion about "lefties" into the picture.

I can just imagine what Ann Coulter and Sean Hannity would have to say about it...

"If it weren't for the LIBERALS, Ronald Reagan would have put giant laser weapons on the moon the protect us."

"Hollywood liberals are in league with the aliens. If they hadn't destroyed Joe McCarthy, we would have beaten the Soviets in the 1950s and been prepared for this alien attack!"

Or, what CNN would report...

"Donald Rumsfeld addressed Congress today to explain why the U.S. was not prepared for this alien invasion. A White House memo dated March 2001 clearly spelled out the possiblity of an attack from outer space. Yet, no specific plan was formulated. Many are now calling for Rumsfeld to resign."

Can't we leave partisan politics out of this? Nick Berg was an American. He was killed by terrorists for being an American.

The terrorists don't care if you're a lefty or a neocon or an American like me who prefers to think for himself rather than ascribing to a political philosophy that has been invented by the media.

While you are counting trackback pings, Osama Bin Laden is counting the number of Americans he's killed. The terrorists don't care what Andrew Sullivan and Kos have to say. They'd kill either one of them with equal zeal.

Pennywit-So let me... (Below threshold)

Pennywit-

So let me make sure I understand what you’re saying:

“I'm also outraged over Abu Ghraib because the men and women who abused the prisoners were representing me when they did it ... and I rather resent that.”

Are you saying that your shame over an isolated incident of improper conduct (not death to the prisoners at Abu Ghraib - at worst a shameful display and breakdown of military discipline to which those responsible will answer in military court) takes the high moral ground to sawing, yes, sawing off an innocent American’s head in retaliation for shaming Iraqi thugs?

For your own well-being, pray that America can successfully prosecute the war on terrorism. I can’t imagine your shock if you actually came face to face with one of these persecuted ( I believe you used the term “subtle racism”) Iraqis.

And don't be mistaken, they will continue to kill Americans as long as we allow them to.

But, they do share your moral relativism - except in reverse. A bit of irony, I suppose.

Bob -- I was refer... (Below threshold)

Bob --

I was referring to my personal reactions as a form of "subtle racism." I expect Americans to behave better than the Muslims. It's sad that on an emotional level I believe that.

Now, to questions of "moral high ground." I don't think that the prison scandal or the Berg video occupy any sort of moral high ground over each other. By common account, many of the prisoners at Abu Ghraib shouldn't have been there. And the prison scandal, if you recall, includes killings -- that's right, killings -- of prisoners.

As for the Berg executioners? I don't condone their actions one bit. On some reptile level, I would say, "Give me those five men, give me a gun with ten bullets, and we'll see what happens." Believe it or not, I want those men dead. But my sadness and disappointment comes largely because I know that the Muslim people can do better than this. I know that there are good people in the Middle East, but they seem largely absent.

I am sad and disappointed because of the world in which we live -- a world in which five masked men abuse the name of their god, and for what? Not for some political gain, not for some bit of war, but just to slake their thirst for blood.

Nicholas Berg died because of them. A senseless, useless death.

Thank you very much, Bob. You've helped me trace my thoughts a little more. It's not the murderers' behavior that saddens me -- it's the fact that yet another person has died for the extremists' insane, blody crusade.

As a lefty of little conseq... (Below threshold)
mac:

As a lefty of little consequence, I didn't link up for two reasons -- one, I didn't know it was available until just this moment and two, I don't intend to watch the video.

I also don't intend to watch the alleged video footage of rapes at Abu Ghraig either. I don't need to see it. It should be available publicly if others have the need to watch it, but I nearly burst out crying from seeing the burned and dismembered bodies of U.S. contractors last month. Seeing a guy decapitated is something I don't want. It happened. It's awful and atrocious.

I'm not sure what this is about. Are you just upset that more people don't want to watch someone be decapitated?

Kevin, I needed a verb and ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Kevin, I needed a verb and I picked "lament."

I did not call your response partisan per se but you must admit that in aggregate the reaction from the left wing bloggers was far different than the ones on the right.

-----

Fritz, I calls 'um like I sees 'um.

Don't shoot the messenger. I just noticed something and posted on it.

Three things:1. Typi... (Below threshold)
Pete:

Three things:
1. Typical leftist reaction, actually... I'm not shocked.

2. Pennywit just seems to care more for herself than for anyone else -- feeling bad because the Abu Grahib was done representing her, as opposed to being outraged at the sheer brutality with which a fellow American was killed. The priorities are clear -- the worst things in the world are those that make her look bad, followed by those that don't.

3. Maybe I missed the sarcasm or I'm misinformed, but wasn't Nick Berg one of the contractors at whom the "Screw Them" comment was directed?

Mac asked: "I'm not sure... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Mac asked: "I'm not sure what this is about. Are you just upset that more people don't want to watch someone be decapitated?"

No, I was just making an observation. Just like observed that you could not manage to post a comment without mentioning Abu Ghraig and even had to mention alleged video.

So my question to you: Why are lefties always more willing to highlight wrongdoing by our soldiers than our enemy?

From Pennywit's comment:... (Below threshold)
Fritz:

From Pennywit's comment: "But my sadness and disappointment comes largely because I know that the Muslim people can do better than this. I know that there are good people in the Middle East, but they seem largely absent."

Uh...they seem largely absent because there isn't an ocean between them and these murderers. Terrorists don't just kill Americans. They kill anyone who doesn't support them.

You see the same thing here in the U.S. in neighborhoods that have been taken over by street gangs. No one will testify against gang members because doing so puts their lives and the lives of their family members in danger.

When you see an Iraqi dancing in the street over the corpse of an American, it may be that he is doing it to ensure that the "insurgents" know that he's on their side. It will keep his family safe from being targeted for sympathizing with Americans.

Forced demonstations have been a way of life in Iraq and Iran for decades. When Saddam wanted an anti-American rally, he got what he asked for. No one held the demonstrators at gunpoint. They simply knew what was expected of them. They went out in the street and burned our flag and then went home knowing that they'd shown the support needed to keep from being dragged off to Abu Ghraib.

Now, religious leaders, warlords, and terrorists have assumed the leadership role that has been left vacant after the removal of Saddam. The status quo hasn't changed. These people must still demonstrate the right sentiments or risk being killed. This is where we are failing the Iraqi people.

We are being timid in not swiftly eliminating every opposing threat to democracy. We fear that the Iraqis will react negatively if we act with all our force. We need to finish the job we started. Eliminate the oppostion to democracy quickly and show the Iraqi people that they are free to express their opinions without fear of reprisals from crazy clerics and bloodthirsty terrorists.

Pete:You remark: ... (Below threshold)

Pete:

You remark: "Pennywit just seems to care more for herself than for anyone else -- feeling bad because the Abu Grahib was done representing her, as opposed to being outraged at the sheer brutality with which a fellow American was killed. The priorities are clear -- the worst things in the world are those that make her look bad, followed by those that don't."

I'm speaking of my lowest common denominator beliefs, at the roots of my discontent. I'm also speaking to my greater identity as an American; when American soldiers misbehave, they impute their own behavior to this nation as a whole.

...and your "discontent" ov... (Below threshold)
Pete:

...and your "discontent" over having a "common denominator" with some stupid American soldiers outweighs any feelings you might have for seeing a man beheaded on video?

That's sick on a number of levels.

"I guess there was a beheading? On video? Whatever... but oh poor me! Someone wearing an American flag made the rest of America look bad!"

...speaking of making Americans look bad.

Pete:Do I have to sp... (Below threshold)

Pete:
Do I have to spell everything out? Let me put it this way: Abu Ghraib disgusts me on any number of levels. The violation of individuals. The violation of human rights. The fact that those soldiers' actions exacerbated the already difficult mission of winning "hearts and minds" in Iraq. The left-leaning politicians using this as an opportunity to grandstand. The right leaning politicians turning into apologists. The fact that something -- whether official or otherwise -- made these soldiers feel like it was acceptable to abuse prisoners that were entrusted to their care.

And, yes, I hold Americans to a higher standard of behavior because I assume that most share values congruent with my own, at least inasfar as regards human life and the dignity of the individual.

In terms of sadness vs. anger, I do speak in terms of emotion.

In terms of law and order -- far more important motivators -- I want everybody, from executioners to abusers in this Iraq war, held accountable.

So...I can't mention the ot... (Below threshold)
mac:

So...I can't mention the other video as a point of reference? If we're counting the number of times I mentioned an atrocity commited by U.S. soldiers to the number of times I mentioned an atrocity committed by the enemy, it comes out like this: the enemy: 2/the U.S.: 1.

I'd say it's your perception that I am [or "the left," in general] more willing to highlight the U.S.' wrongdoing. Certainly, there are some on both sides of the fence that are blinded by their partisanship to that degree.

Pennywit-I admire ... (Below threshold)

Pennywit-

I admire your voracity in arguing your points, however - and this is not meant as an insult - but, you exhibit a great naiveté where it concerns the goings on in Iraq. If it’s any consolation, however, you’re not alone.

“Now, to questions of "moral high ground." I don't think that the prison scandal or the Berg video occupy any sort of moral high ground over each other. By common account, many of the prisoners at Abu Ghraib shouldn't have been there. And the prison scandal, if you recall, includes killings -- that's right, killings -- of prisoners.”

First of all, there has yet to be ANY confirmation of killing at Abu Ghraib.

Secondly, the price of admission to cell blocks to 1-A and 1-B, where the alleged torture took place, was one or more of various charges including murder and insurgent terrorism. These are not your garden variety jaywalkers. There is a good chance that some of the prisoners in this cell block killed Americans. These are men who aren’t afraid to die but can’t tolerate shame in front of their peers – which is exactly what the interrogators intended in order to secure information that might prevent more killing of Americans.

I subscribe to the belief that some Americans don’t have the stomach for this war because the enemy falls outside the Western definitions of humanity. You may desparately want to believe that compassion will change the hearts of the terrorists but it hasn’t worked for the last 1000 years. The more we ignore the atrocities perpetrated by fundamentalist Islam, the closer they will come to our front door. I would prefer to stop them in the Middle East. I think you would too.

Lastly, there damn sure is a moral high ground here. Remember the images of people leaping to their death from the WTC? American planes were used to indiscriminately kill 3,000 Americans. America is attempting to make sure this doesn’t happen again. The terrorists have no right to the high ground.

Bob:Whether there ... (Below threshold)

Bob:

Whether there were killings at Abu Ghraib, it has been implied that there were killings elsewhere in the war-on-terror detainee system. Additionally, it has been strongly implied, if not outright stated, that a number of the individuals subjected to abuse were not terrorists, but rather individuals inserted into the system by error.

I don't believe that compassion is going to end the terrorists' campaign against the United States. I also don't believe that military force alone is going to solve this problem. Rather, the United States needs to implement a multi-pronged approach that starts with military action against nation-states and NGOs directly involved in attacks against the United States, continues with political pressure brought against those nations or organizations that harbor or sympathize with terrorist groups, and concludes with as many of the terrorists as possible either dead or in U.S. custody.

For the terrorists, recruitment is largely based on the perception of the United States as a huge, evil power that backs Israel and hates Muslims. Having U.S. troops indulge in abuses like those at Abu Grhaib gives the terrorist recruiters that much more fodder for their recruitment mill.

I do not advocate ignoring this Berg beheading. Believe it or not, I don't blame it on the media, on Abu Grhaib, or on anybody else. As near as I can tell, if there were no Abu Grhaib, Berg (or somebody like him) would have been gruesomely executed because the U.S. supports Israel, because the U.S. invaded Iraq, or perhaps even because the U.S. allows women to wear pants.

When I spoke of "moral high ground," I was merely comparing the two acts of execution and abuse. I really see no value in an ethical calculus that goes "20 abused Iraqis ... does that equal or exceed one gruesomely beheaded American?" Rather, I find both acts morally reprehensible.

In this war on terror, I see a very large danger: that Americans will simply learn Muslims = Evil and will simply dehumanize all Muslims regardless of those individuals' personal values.

Seys Mac: So...I can't m... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Seys Mac: So...I can't mention the other video as a point of reference?

Nooooo. You can't (bring yourself to) mention the beheading video without mentioning the "alleged" video. That is not my opinion, that is a retelling of your actions.

It goes to my question that you ignored.

"Why are lefties always more willing to highlight wrongdoing by our soldiers than our enemy?"

You can change the topic but that is the question you refuse to answer.

Until you answer that question (for yourself), you are just living in a dream world of your own making

I'm trying to understand th... (Below threshold)
jack:

I'm trying to understand this. Somehow the soldiers commiting the abuse represented you? How?

They are employees.

Much like postal workers. Do you feel especially aggieved from the postal worker killings because they 'represented you'? They too, were employees of the government, exactly like the soldiers were. Are you somehow involved in the criminal actions of anyone who's employed by the government? Collective guilt?

You've got it backwards, pennywit. Those soldiers didn'r represent you, they failed you. They failed everyone who believed in them, who employed them. They should feel shame.

We, who did not abuse or countenance the abuse do not share their guilt. Or their shame

And so you continue to babb... (Below threshold)
Pete:

And so you continue to babble on about Abu Grhaib. Seems like you're the one who needs things spelled out, Pennywit.

Only two points to make here. First: what you're describing is significantly more than "subtle racism" -- you might as well be saying "Well, I reckon I'd expect that outta one a them damn sandn*ggers, but not out of a 'merican! You boys oughta be ashamed!"

Secondly, the aforementioned racism might be to blame, but still the severity of emotion: "saddened" over an innocent man getting decapitated versus "outraged" over some hooded Iraqi's standing on boxes.

...So how does the Berg beheading compare to, say, seeing Bambi's mother shot? The final episode of friends? Just curious -- trying to figure out just how "sad" it was.

I thought I did answer your... (Below threshold)
mac:

I thought I did answer your question.

Nothing I will ever say will be enough for you, Paul.

Pete:I admit my ow... (Below threshold)
pennywit:

Pete:

I admit my own racism because I know it permeates many of my thoughts. I try to examine it, note it, and set it aside. I then note my emotions, how they affect my desires and goals, and then I try to set them aside. With everybody reflecting on rage, I simply note my sadness over the continued violence.

At the end of the day, I want what everybody else wants -- victory in this war, and appropriate punishment for those who perpetrate cruelty and hatred against their fellow man.

You answered it? Maybe I ju... (Below threshold)
Paul:

You answered it? Maybe I just missed it. Cut and paste it, i'll read it again....

"Why are lefties always more willing to highlight wrongdoing by our soldiers than our enemy?"

Paul:I can answer ... (Below threshold)

Paul:

I can answer at least a little bit about that. I am more likely to criticize my own government, rather than another government, because I start from the assumption that if we're at war with another government, that government is wrong. My restating that proposition doesn't make it more or less true.

--|PW|--

Paul, obviously pennywit is... (Below threshold)
Fritz:

Paul, obviously pennywit isn't biting on your partisan-baited question. One would first have to accept your premise and you haven't proven it yet.

Frankly, it is similar to something that Ann Coulter or another reactionary right-wing pundit would ask and not worthy of a response. It is a generality. I usually dismiss arguments that contain statements like "A always does B" unless is can first be proven to be true.

I believe that there are plenty of conservatives questioning the actions of our soldiers right now. And, doing so doesn't put them in league with the enemy. I am also quite certain that what is being said on Aljazeera is much more critical than anything Kevin Drum will ever write (I know 'cuz I visit their Web site from time to time).

Here's a sample:

"Every American should watch this tape to see what is coming to them, or are they the only ones allowed to kill?"

Mutaz,
Syrian taxi driver

Fritz... The question was n... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Fritz... The question was not aimed at pennywit it was aimed at Mac.

Please get your facts straight before you accuse.

Shoot, I'm late to the disc... (Below threshold)

Shoot, I'm late to the discussion on my own blog :-).

From an observational point of view Paul may be correct, but my only issue (such that it is) is the implicit assumption that a topic must be covered by a blog (right or left leaning) if they are an "A list" site. First I don't put Wizbang in an arbitrary "A list" and second there are lots of high importance stories and some times there's just nothing more to add to a fast moving story.

Finally paraphrasing Michele, "when [you] start paying me for writing then I will cover the topics you want me to post on." By that measure only Kevin Drum would be expected to have any sort of 'requirement' to cover the story (assuming his employer excercises editorial control - which I doubt is actually the case).

I see your point Kev. But ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

I see your point Kev. But that was sorta my point.

Many of the big name lefty blogs were not interested in the story enough to cover it. That in itself is worthy of note if you think about it.

I'm not implying they had any obligation to cover it.

But the "editorial" decisions by the respective bloggers was interesting.

"Why are lefties always mor... (Below threshold)
leftydude:

"Why are lefties always more willing to highlight wrongdoing by our soldiers than our enemy?"

Why don't you back that statement up smartie? Last i checked al-jazeera prints FAR MORE stories and images of alleged american atrocities than any lefty rag.

Finally, all you dittohead fucks were more than willing to criticize the military when Clinton was at the helm. (As I and plenty of other prinicipled lefties did as well, but probably a hell of a lot more intelligently than you dipshits).

Now that your boy Bush is in power, all hail the military! US soldiers committing crimes? an "isolated act"! get real dudes.

Cheers,
Stu

Did you read the post dummy... (Below threshold)
Herman:

Did you read the post dummy?

An American was beheaded and all the left-wing bloggers could talk about was how bad our soldiers were. Not one linked to the video.

Grow the fuck up and learn to read.

Seems like everyone of the ... (Below threshold)
VeteranJoe:

Seems like everyone of the lefites are more interested in stating their own moral theories then admitting one key fact here...Nick Berg was in a foreign country formally ruled by one of the great maniacs of the 20th century, trying to help in some form to rebuild it. He was a non-combatant. The blood thirsty muslim fanatics sawed his head off. Some thanx for trying to build a third world country into a modren nation. Repub's idea of an atrocity: 9-11, daniel pearl, mass graves courtesy saddam hussein, gassing thousands of kurds thanx again saddam, rapes and mutilations of innocent iraqi from quess who, contractors in fallujah burned, ripped apart and hung, and now nick berg. lefties idea of atrocity-admitted iraqi terroists having smelly panties put on their face and dog collars tied around their necks as their pictures are taken in a simulated homosexual gang bang...lefties, get real!

It took me a few days to <a... (Below threshold)

It took me a few days to write about Nick Berg. I was just too upset about it. (No, I didn't link to the video itself, I assume my readers can find it themselves if they really want to.)

First, let me make it clear: there is absolutely no moral comparison between beheading a man on videotape and then shouting the name of God, and mistreatment of prisoners. None. The first is evil, the second merely corrupt.

Secondly, I think it's dangerous to start criticizing blogs for not covering any particular issue. I've had to deal with this when commenters accused me of being anti-whatever for not covering a particular issue. My blog, and I would say most blogs, is not:

1) A news organization, with responsibility to cover every issue.
2) A comprehensive statement of my political (and other) beliefs, or those of anyone else.
3) Something I spend 24 hours a day on, to the exclusion of my work, family, sanity, etc.

So, omitting to write something on any given topic cannot be taken as evidence of anything -- except as evidence, perhaps, that blogs are at best an unreliable place to get all of your news.

Third, there's the issue of the emotional reaction to recent news from Iraq. Pennywit has been most honest in telling us why she reacts as she did, and for that I commend her. I mean, that's what this is really about, isn't it? Why do lefties get all upset about x, instead of y. It never ceases to amaze me how unwilling we are (and I say "we" as in humans) to give up our algorithms, our standard responses for interpreting events. I am not surprised at all by anyone's reaction to Berg's murder, really.

Fourth, in defense of the practice of giving more pixels over to critizing our own government, rather than condemning the evil acts of others, the point seems to me to be: why do we write on blogs? To be sure, we write about what we care about. But I think, for political bloggers, there's a hope at least that there's some effect of what we write, where we link, the information we disseminate. The Trent Lott story, and the role of the blogosphere in pushing that story, is a case in point. So writing about my outrage over the murder of Nick Berg helps me work it out -- but I doubt that it will help bring his murderers to any form of justice. Writing about Abu Ghraib might help prevent the abuse of our own power, in theory at any rate.

So now you tell me: am I a lefty or not?

nothing is what it seems in... (Below threshold)
macks:

nothing is what it seems in this new quicktime war. iraqis are not iraqis. their sunnis, kurds, shias, mullahs, buddists, christians and a very small amount of jews and foriegn fundemental fighters on both sides. 26 yr old international contractors turn out to be cia agents and freedom rests atop a very large oilfield and a lesser pile of wmd. put your knives and your 358s away. relax. turn your ac settings down 1 click. jobs done. wars won.

I find it suggestive that r... (Below threshold)
Adrian:

I find it suggestive that right-wingers thought it appropriate to link to the video. An uncritical, knee-jerk reaction to something that appears to bolster their case. Hypocritical too, to link to this but not to support the release of images of US military casualties.

Even if we leave the conspiracy theories aside, even you must now concede that the Nick Berg story isn't quite as black-and-white as it at first appeared.

I cannot believe that they ... (Below threshold)
amanda:

I cannot believe that they did something like and actually had the nerve to post it on the Internet.
They are sick minded people and I hope that they rot in hell. American troops should really take into consideration how sick these people are and start fighting harder and make those Iraqi bastards pay.

All the more reason to star... (Below threshold)
Brian:

All the more reason to start developing alternatives to oil energies! If you take oil out of the equation, all these sand nigger gypsies have are bearded ugly women, sand and camel shit. Breaks the chains of oil and the doon coons go back to the stone age. That $2/gallon gas you put in your 2 ton soccer-mom land tank helped put that RPG in Jamal's hairy knuckled mitt. It put that AK-47 in Kareem's Camel jocky's hands. It bought cell phones, pilot lessons, maps, hotel rooms, and information for the 9-11 terrorists to kill 3,000 Americans.

You want to fuck a terrorist? Take away his fucking money....plain and simple.

Support alternative energy sources people.....and fuck a terrorist

hello i'm italian and i won... (Below threshold)
giulia:

hello i'm italian and i wont to know where is the video of nik berg... i wont to see...
p.s. fuck iraq god bless america




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