Al Jazeera is reporting that the U.S. plotted to overthrow the democratically elected government in the Palestinian territories. A story that has picked up some press internationally, but hasn’t picked up much mainstream steam in the U.S. The notable exception is Vanity Fair’s “The Gaza Bombshell.” The article drew this rebuke from an Administration official (source).
The story alleges that there was some kind of secret plot on the part of the U.S. government to create an internal conflict within the Palestinians, specifically an armed conflict. That’s absurd. That’s ridiculous. I said this morning that I think Vanity Fair should stick to arty photos of celebrities since clearly, at least in this instance, their efforts at serious journalism leaves something lacking.
The rebuke stands as a disconnect between U.S. myth and how the U.S. has historically acted. As Stephen Kinzer’s book “Overthrow: America’s Century of Regime Change from Hawaii to Iraq” shows, how this overthrow attempt is described is inline with how other attempts have been conducted and also their motives. Historically, it is also telling that government officials lied about the U.S. role in many of the previous overthrows. The Bush administration’s strong, and baseless dismissal should serve as a further indication that the story is, in fact, true. The sheer incredulity and faux-paternalistic lecturing is indicative that the story has struck a nerve.
Overthrows are typically the tool the U.S. uses when democracy produces an outcome Washington does not find to its liking. It is also telling the extent to which the mainstream media ignores such stories in favor of Patrick Swayze’s apparent battle with cancer. This is not meant as a knock on Patrick Swayze. I wish him the best. However, the Hamas overthrow attempt has potential for blowback, and therefore should be receiving much better coverage. This serves as another example the mainstream press fails to put the world into context and impedes citizens in a democracy from making informed decisions.