From the Left. What’s up at TPM? The usually spot-on blog already appears to have buried the story of the leaked Iraq video. Instead, the RNC’s strip ‘n spend scandal takes top spot on the site I’m sure, much to the delight of gleeful liberals for whom the RNC debaucheries, the Iraq war and other crimes often seem to be little more than sticks with which to beat the right-wing.
Even when the site did run the Wikileaks story, the headline–in a classic pseudo-objective tactic of mainstream media–used quotations around the term murder: “Wikileaks: Video Shows ‘Murder’ of Iraqis by U.S. Helicopters“. I mean hello, what does it take to scream bloody murder? And by what logic does the murder of several people including two journalists–the details and video of which the military refused to reveal–become a less important story than the “sexy hotspots” that the Republican white male young things are attending?
I do think TPM generally does solid work, whether I agree with it or not, but I can’t help but associate the absence of the Iraq story from the front page by late today with the relatively relaxed attitude of liberals over Iraq’s occupation now that it has become Obama’s project. It was they who swelled the numbers of the anti-war movement in the first years of the Iraq war: the war was bad; that Bush II was the man leading it was, for many liberals, worse. And those of us who argued in those days that the anti-war movement must make the case against the war on ethical grounds rather than tactical concerns about how to accrue the numerically largest protests were told that we were being too idealistic. The numbers game failed because those demonstrations were never backed by commitment. The American state knew that.
In the name of pragmatism which is always an ideology masquerading as technique, real fault-lines between a liberal view and an anti-imperialist leftist vision were papered over with slogans that said too little and agreements that compromised the movement too much. And here we are: the occupations rage on and multiply, the anti-war movement is leaderless and scattered and white men enjoy lap dances at the expense of the RNC whilst the liberals cheerily rattle on about the depravity of the Republicans all the while ignoring their own MAAF Obama’s shockingly pathetic record (even by my rather low standards) on his campaign promises and his ratcheting up of the global war in Afghanistan and Pakistan –the only one he’s kept whole-heartedly. 
A pox on both your bloody houses.
1. Another note on “MAAF”: Cerise L. Glenn and Landra J. Cunningham. “The Power of Black Magic: The Magical Negro and White Salvation” Journal of Black Studies 2009; 40; 135 originally published online Oct 8, 2007.