1. Tear gas. The crawl on CNN screen last night said that the teargas used in Egypt was manufactured in the United States. CNN also published an article to that effect.
But look: Israel has been using the same teargas to suppress and kill nonviolent demonstrators for a long time. Not a peep. So far...
2. Sanctions. In his bumbling press briefing two days ago, Robert Gibbs put the U.S. "assistance posture" toward the Egyptians on the table, warning the gov't not to crack down on the protesters or there goes our money. People are listening. Firedoglake has called for ending aid to Egypt, citing the teargas canisters we produce being used against demonstrators.
Let me remind you, the Israelis killed nearly 400 children in Gaza by dropping white phosphorus on them over 22 days of hellish attacks on a population of 1.5 million two years ago, and the U.S. said nothing. The siege of Gaza is collective punishment, a war crime. And pro-democracy demonstrations in the West Bank, where the people have no rights, are routinely suppressed by Israel. A worldwide movement has called for boycott, divestment and sanctions. Will Firedoglake and Robert Gibbs see the writing on the wall?
3. Hamas/Muslim Brotherhood. The most important statement on cable news I have seen in days came from Peter Bergen, security analyst for CNN, when he demolished an anchor's suggestion that the Muslim Brotherhood is a terrorist organization. The MB is a "responsible" organization that has renounced terrorist tactics long ago. "Of course they are democratic," Bergen said."These groups are all around the Middle East, sometimes they become the government. We saw that with Hamas." Brilliant breakthrough, thank you Bergen. James North pointed out days ago here that MB wants nothing to do with Al Qaeda. Compare these insights to Martin Fletcher at MSNBC, the son of Holocaust survivors, who warned that an "Islamic fundamentalist" government in Egypt would make it impossible for the U.S. to support Egypt. That is simple intolerance.
I don't think these contradictions can survive this moment of incredible education for Americans.
4. Dialogue. On CNN this morning, Candy Crowley bridled at Hillary Clinton's suggestion that "dialogue" is the answer in Egypt. The verdict was in a long time ago, people want their oppressor gone; what possible process of negotiation would produce a satisfactory outcome, Crowley was saying. This lesson needs to go next door, where Palestinian anti-occupation groups have pointed out for years that dialogue has produced one result: the powerful stay in power, the victims are further oppressed and dispossessed, the occupation never ends.
The firewall of polite hypocrisy when it comes to Israel can't survive.
5. Obama's policy. Talking to Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC the other day, Jane Harman scolded Mubarak for ignoring Obama's call for democracy in Cairo two years ago. You are now reaping the whirlwind, she said in effect.
Well, Obama called for an end to the settlements and an end to the humiliation of the Palestinian people in that same speech; and Netanyahu has brazenly defied him.
America, are you listening?