Americans and the European countries love to pat their backs for being the true supporters of the so-called ‘freedom of speech’. However, their self-praise is based on double standard. For example, one can say or write anything against Islam or even Christianity while living inside a ‘freedom of speech’ Western country – but would be called a ‘hatemonger’ or ‘anti-semite’ or ‘Jew hater’ – if he dares criticize Israel or Zionism – in the same ‘freedom of speech’ Western country.
A similar double standard applies to American ‘democracy’ as well. When its serves Israel’s interests in the Arab world – regardless of the principle of governess (kingdom, dictatorship, etc.) – they turn to be ‘good examples’. However, when it doesn’t – the whole concept of American deomcracy changes too – as is the case in occupied Palestine, Lebanon, Venezuela, Turkey and Iran.
Last month, US Congress passed a bill by a vote of 395-3 (that shows you the power of Israel Lobby), which would require “the US President to file an annual report to Congress on anti-American incitement ti violence in the Middle East media.” The bill was sponsored by Gus Bilirakis (R-Florida), Joseph Crowley (D-NY) and lleana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Florida). The bill singled out Hamas’ Al-Aqsa TV and Al-Rafidayn TV and Hizbollah’s Al-Manar TV. Once okeyed by the Senate and signed by Barack Obama – these and other Arab media outlets relaying news critical to Zionist entity would be sanctioned under the ‘Specially Designated Global Terrorist’ Act – which according to Jerusalem Post “would also affect the satellite carrier which broadcast them”.
Interestingly, most of the TV program used as ‘the evidence’ – are based on the historical Israel-Palestine or Israel-Hizbollah context rather than preaching terrorism against the US. The ’terrorist list’ includes Al-Aqsa’s children program ‘Tomorrow’s Pioneers’ in which the cartoon characters like teddy bear and a bumblebee (see video below) are used to “indoctrinate youth and incite violence against Israel”. It looks Fatah likes the bill too. It has called for the boycott of the Al-Jazeera and Al-Arabiya satellite networks for being baised towards it.
Lebanese president Michel Suleiman has criticized the bill during his meeting with visiting US Senator John McCain: “President Suleiman asked that Washington backtrack on its decision to ban certain television channels including Al-Manar,” statement issued after the conclusion of the meeting on Friday. John McCain is heading a Congressmen group on visit to Lebanon currently. The other lebanese leaders who criticized Congress decision included Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, who in his letter to Congress Speaker Nancy Pelosi stated: “The bill issued by your Congress undermines our sovereigntyas well as the sovereignty of many other countries and damages the principles of freedom and civilian rights and therefore, further complicates the relationship.”
Franklin Lamb PhD writes from Beirut: “Al-Manar is being singled out by the US Israel Lobby precisely because it excels as a responsible TV channel that demands and applies the highest industry standards and Israelis and western viewers trust is news broadcasts more than they do much of their own media.” In suppressing Al-Manar, the US Congress is saying that it shall determine what the American public can be trusted to know. During the Cold War, when the USSR dedicated itself to the destruction of the West, the US declined to block foreign media.
The main ‘evidence’ offered by the US State Department for Al-Manar being ‘anti-semite’ – for criticizing Israel – was its 2003 airing of the Syrian produced 29 part TV series, The Diaspora. The popular series trace the history of the founding of Zionism, Jewish collaboration with Nazis, Jews behind Communism and the bloody Russian Revolution and the establishment of the Zionist state in 1948. Some of the historical narrations, naturally, don’t follow the history taught in Israel. In reality, Al-Manar management did drop the series and apologized to Jewish people, saying that “it knows the difference between Judaism and Zionism.” The followers of Moses along with the followers of Christ – are called “The People of Book” in Holy Qur’an and considered equal to Muslims in cases of piety.
In reality, the West is trying to contain Islamic resistance that has unsettled its compliance and threatens Zionist entity. If by Western standard apolitical, docile Islam is the moderate element to be supported, then Hamas and Hizbollah by definition become the ‘extremist’ to be opposed and ultimately eliminated.
Bilal El-Amine’s article in Red Pepper magazine, titled Home-grown in Lebanon, is worth reading for those who are interested to know the real Hizbollah which is masked by Israel Lobby. Only Israel, the US and Canada has declared Hizbollah “a terrorist organization” – though it has ministers in the current Lebanese government and the largest social network in the Middle East.