Time to make a few fair assumptions about Chris Mathews of CNBC. Either his brain cells are made of recycled sewer rat droppings or he is a pathological liar. A third possibility is that the rat droppings in his brain cause him to compulsively mislead his viewers. You be the judge.
On repeated occasions, most recently on Jan 8, 2002, Chris has brazenly misinformed his viewers by feeding them the canard that Israel was attacked by the Arabs in 1956 and 1967. Now, a fifth grader in the Middle East knows enough about the ‘Suez Crisis’ of 1956 to understand that it was a coordinated attack by three armies (Israel, Britain and France) against Egypt. The plot to attack Egypt and get control of the Suez Canal was hatched in a French Chateau in Severes on October 22, 1956 . Guy Mollet was there as Prime Minister of France. Ben-Gurion and Moshe Dayan were there to represent Israel, accompanied by one Shimon Peres. And the English were represented by Selwyn Lloyd, the Foreign Secretary. The rest of this story is very well documented in ‘Suez by Keith Kyle.’ The book would be a little hard to grasp for a circus barker like Mathews whose intellectual life has evolved around Chandra Levy, Monica Lewinsky and O. J. Simpson. But he might be able to get through chapter 17 titled “Severes, Conference of Collusion.”
Just in case Chris Mathews stumbles on the big words, I will provide him here with the verification of who attacked who in 1956. This should be simple enough, even for Chris.
The results of the conversations which took place at Sevres from 22-24 October 1956 between representatives of the Governments of the United Kingdom, The State of Israel and of France are the following:
1. Israeli forces launch in the evening of 29 October 1956 a large scale attack oc the Egyptian forces with the aim of reaching the Canal zone the following day.
2. On being apprised of these events, The British and French Governments during the day of 30 October 1956 respectively and simultaneously make two appeals to the Egyptian Government and the Israeli Government on the following lines:
To the Egyptian Government
Anglo-French forces to guarantee freedom of passage through the
Canal by vessels of all nations until a final settlement.
To the Israeli Government
In addition, the Israeli Government will be notified that the French and British Governments have demanded of the Egyptian Government to accept temporary occupation of key positions along the Canal by Anglo-French forces.
It is agreed that if one of the Governments refused, or did not give its consent, within twelve hours, the Anglo-French forces would intervene with the means necessary to ensure that their demands are accepted.
The representatives of the three Governments agree that the Israeli Government will not be required to meet the conditions in the appeal addressed to it, in the event that the Egyptian Government does not accept those in the appeal addressed to it for their part.
3. In the event that the Egyptian Government should fail to agree within the stipulated time to the conditions of the appeal addressed to it, the Anglo-French forces will launch military operations against the Egyptian forces in the early hours of the morning of 31 October.
4. The Israeli Government will send forces to occupy the western shore of the Gulf of Akaba and the group of islands Tirane and Sanafir to ensure freedom of navigation in the Gulf of Akaba.
5. Israel undertakes not to attack Jordan during the period of operations against Egypt.
6.The arrangements of the present protocol must remain strictly secret.
7. They will enter into force after the agreement of the three Governments
Signed by David Ben-Gurion Patrick Dean Christian Dean
In addition to this protocol, a separate French Israeli protocol, to provide French jets to Israel.
Making things simple for Chris Mathews
It is 1956. Israel, England and France signed an agreement to attack Egypt. Egypt was duly attacked with thousands of casualties, including POWs who were murdered along with many innocent civilians. Egyptian cities were bombed. Finally, Ike intervened and told the three aggressors to pack their bags and leave Egypt. Is that simple enough for Mathews? Or are the rat droppings confusing him.
The Six-Day War for intellectually challenged NBC correspondents
On June 6th, 1967 Israel attacked Egypt, Syria and Jordan in what it called a ‘pre-emptive strike’ for security reasons. The war resulted in the occupation of Sinai, Gaza, The West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan heights. Ignoring all international laws governing belligerent occupation, the Israeli government began an almost immediate program to annex native land, build settlements and truck in zealous right wing Jews to displace the native population. 1967 was a land grab. In fact, Ben Gurion was against it. Moshe Dayan came to regret the consequences. In the meantime the occupied population has been systematically brutalized by a thugish occupation army. As things stand, this thirty-four year land-grab operation legally constitutes the only remaining belligerent foriegn military occupation on the planet.
October 1973 War
Chris Mathews repeatedly informs his audiance that the 1973 war was also an attack on Israel. In fact, after all peace mediation failed, the Egyptian and Syrian armies attempted to forcefully dislodge the Israeli Army from Egyptian soil and the Syrian Golan Heights. The Egyptian army knew that they could only liberate an area that could recieve protection from anti-aircraft defenses. So far from being an assault on Israel. It was an attempt to restore Sinai to a people who had owned it for 6000 years from an expansionist Israeli Army. It was a perfectly legal move and in the end convinced the Israelis that they would have to return that particular bit of stolen property. A final peace treaty has been signed by Egypt and Israel. The Egyptians have been scrupulous in adhering to that agreement. Jordan has also signed an agreement. Syria has never violated the dis-engagement agreements negotiated in the 1970s. Even so, it has been repeatedly provoked by Israeli air attacks. Israel invaded Lebanon in 1978, expanded its invasion in 1982 and didn’t leave until last year when the Lebanese resistance became too costly. Since the Israeli withdrawl, the Lebanese border has been quiet. So who exactly are all these Arabs who surround Israel and want to drive it into the sea? Mathews dishes this crap out, because its the only crap he knows. Perhaps if he challenged Peres about the 1956 war, Sharon about his war crimes, Netenyahu about his constant misinformation, even a guy like Mathews is capable of ingesting a morsel of truth. Well, maybe not.
The Israeli Ambassador to London is wounded by an assailant belonging to the Abu Nidal group. Sharon and Begin use this as a pretext to finish off the PLO and march into Lebanon. They reach Beirut and lay siege to it for three months inflicting tens of thousands of civilian casualties and re-igniting a dormant civil war. Sharon had visions of making Lebanon an Israeli client state. His murderous escapades were met with international condemnation and American troops landed in Lebanon to organize an orderly withdrawl of the PLO forces to Lebanon. The Palestinians had agreed to leave Beirut with American assurances that their refugee populations would not be harmed. Sharon, in a fit of rage, arranged for right wing Lebanese militias to enter the Sabra and Shatila Camps and slaughter the inhabitants. Israeli troops provided flares, rest areas and forced any Palestinian fleeing the camp to go back to the long knives of the Philangists. The bloody orgy went on for three days until the Americans got wind of it and put a stop to the slaughter. All well documented history. Begin, a war criminal himself sets up a Kahane comission to white wash Sharon’s crimes. Appendix B of the findings of that commission remain secret. And a Belgian court is now looking into indicting Sharon for war crimes.
The biggest canard in Israeli mythology is that a tiny army of valiant Jews defended their tiny state against invading Arab Armies. The first Arab soldier entered Palestine after May 15, 1948 to attempt to protect the areas allocated to the Palestinians by the 1947 UN partition plan. By that time Ben Gurion and his terrorist army had already secured nearly 78% of Palestine. These recent Jewish immigrants numbered only 650,000, owned hardly any land and proceeded to expel the native Palestinians to Lebanon, Syria and Jordan. Simha Flapan, an Israeli historian, has documented exactly what happened in 1948. And it is nothing like the movie ‘Exodus’, where Mathews probably learnt his deeply flawed version. Rabin acknowledged taking part in the ethnic cleansing of Ramle.
Which gets us back to the education of Chris Mathews. Why did his research staff fail to correct his repeated lies to the American public? Since Mathews has a constant stream of Israelis on his show, why doesn’t he ask them about what really happened in 1948, 1956 and 1967. Why does he market their canards as gospel truth? It might be that he knows next to nothing about the history of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. But he sure makes an ass of himself pretending that he is some kind of authority. My advice to him is to specialize in ‘scandal’ journalism were he can at least identify with the sleaze that he is covering.
Now, I could make very similar and even worst charges against Bill Maher who also constantly destorts Middle Eastern history and pretends like he has a PHd in the subject. On one show, an unusually intelligent guest made the point that maybe America should not have been eager to topple secular nationalists like Gamal Abdel Nasser, To which the ‘sage of ABC’s politically uncorrect’ decided that his guest had the man’s name wrong. He was certain that she had made a mistake about the real president of Egypt in the 1960s. So Bill corrected her “You mean Abd Gama Nasser”. The lady gave him a sorry look and politely let it pass. But this jingoistic low-breed bigot has spared no effort to malign Muslims and Arabs. I am still doing research on this putrid flake and when he gets his, Chris Mathews won’t feel so bad about having sewer rat waste between his ear.
Mr. Ahmed Amr is Editor of NileMedia.com in Seattle and a regular contributor to Media Monitors Network (MMN).