Media outlets projected something between ridicule and anger this past week toward Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who dared – supposedly like the French FM – to differ with the world’s powers on the Iran nuclear crisis. The press caught that one, actually; hard to miss it, what with all the background noise…
As expected, PM Netanyahu took his case directly to the people, including an appearance on CBS and trading barbs with US Secretary of State John Kerry. He also took advantage of numerous public events in Israel itself to reinforce his message. But diatribe aside, the real question here – as Aaron David Miller suggested this week in CNN – is whether the concerns of such an interested party should be cast aside with the ease adopted by a selective press.
Why “selective”? Well, simply because of its tendency to ignore information that doesn’t necessarily suit its own narrative. For instance: earlier this week, National Iranian American Council head Trita Parsi tweeted that:
Obama official told me US needs bilateral w/ Iran to secure deal & present fait accompli to France
Anybody see that one?
Another example: according to The Daily Beast, Washington has been quietly easing sanctions on Iran for a while now:
The Obama administration began softening sanctions on Iran after the election of Iran’s new president in June, months before the current round of nuclear talks in Geneva or the historic phone call between the two leaders in September.
And then there’s this: a Tehran-affiliated website recently uploaded a graphic depiction of an Iranian attack on Israel. Not that hard to figure out why Netanyahu might view nuclear talks just a tad differently than Russia, for instance.
Oh, and by the way: turns out the media was totally wrong about France. Could it also be wrong about Netanyahu?