The “great anti-Zionist” speaks: "The Assad regime was running an institution of torture in prisons. Possibly 100,000 people are in prison right now. And this makes Israel look like, you know, a champion of human rights.” I mean how much more Zionist-enabling can one get?
And then this garbage:
"Well, I had noticed—I started really paying attention to the coverage closely on the website, and mainly the opinions following the Houla massacre, which was by all accounts carried out by shabiha affiliated with the Assad regime, to the embarrassment of the Assad regime.” Really? All accounts including Frankfurter Alleigmaigne and the BBC world news editor’s blog piece? Talk about selective observation.
"This is a point where, by all accounts, [by ALL Max means the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, aka one man in his living room in Coventry] the Assad regime had killed as many as 10,000 people in order to remain in power, possibly 13,000, according to people I know inside Syria who’ve come out. I’ve done extensive interviews and during the past few weeks, partly prompted by my anguish about my own position as a staffer at Al-Akhbar.” Erm Max doesn’t even cover Syria so why he would conduct extensive interviews for stories he doesn’t cover is lost on me. And he admits as much here:
"This issue exploded right after I joined Al-Akhbar to write about Israel-Palestine and to cover foreign-policy debates in Washington. So Syria wasn’t my beat. The Arab world wasn’t my beat."
"And at the same time, while there were dissident voices at the paper, while there were still some great writers and some really humanistic people working at Al-Akhbar, I noticed that it was publishing op-eds by people like Amal Saad-Ghorayeb, who were just openly apologetic of the Assad regime, if not cheerleading Assad as this kind of subaltern freedom fighter leading what she called a front-line resisting state…." Insinuating I am un-“humanistic”. Yawn. "His regime has in fact offered negotiations with Israel with no preconditions." No shame in fabricating history I see. If one goes back to Max’s article we find a link to a Haaretz piece quoting Netanyahu who alleged Syria had more an offer for unconditional peace talks with Israel in 2009 here. But hey what great anti-Zionist doesn’t trust Netanyahu’s word?
"Well, that’s something I tried to avoid, which is speaking with complete authority about what’s happening on the ground or speaking with total certainty. I think certainty is an enemy of any intellectual clarity in a situation like this. I mean, we have to be probing, we have to be questioning." So all these allegations above are not instances of his certainty. Right.
" My problem was that the opinions at Al-Akhbar’s website in support of the Assad regime, which I’ve identified specifically by Amal Saad-Ghorayeb and Sharmine Narwani and by the editor-in-chief, Ibrahim al-Amin, were not based on any journalistic fieldwork." Of course, because primary sources like interviews with western, Arab and Syrian officials, activists, and insiders isn’t fieldwork, and secondary sources like the writings of western and Israeli academics and historians are all biased and in favour of Assad, and hence don’t count as evidence.
What a silly, silly, lying little white man, whose motives aren’t even worth exploring.
If you feel like a laugh read or watch the full interview here: