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March 13, 2009

More From Cohen's "Sophisticated" Middle East

Not to obsess over Richard Cohen's Israel obsession, but a couple of entertaining (or disturbing, depending on how you're feeling) videos from recent days are worth highlighting, in light of the Washington Post columnist's Feb. 22 column.

In that piece, Cohen insisted that the Middle East doesn't fall for the West's double standards because the region has "become too sophisticated." (As noted in an earlier blog entry, Cohen's column necessarily had to ignore the many examples of double standards emanating from the Middle East.)

Here are a couple of examples of this "sophistication" that Cohen can use to buttress his argument.

Last December, Iranian television aired a documentary explaining that Harry Potter is part of a Jewish/Zionist propaganda and brainwashing operation — a way to tell children to "join us" in worshiping Satan and to further the Jewish goal's of "world domination." (The latter point is elegantly explicated by a sophisticated Iranian university lecturer, Dr. Mehdi Goljan.)

The following month, on the other edge of the Middle East, Egyptian television showed cleric Safwat Higazi explaining that people should boycott Starbucks because the two-tailed mermaid starbucks.jpgon the Starbucks logo is actually the Jewish Queen Esther (from the Purim story). You can watch that broadcast here.

There are surely many Middle Easterners who are indeed sophisticated, and see the absurdity of these conspiracy theories. But thanks to Middle Eastern university lecturers, clerics and television, there are all too many whose view of Jews recalls medieval Europe.

Posted by GI at March 13, 2009 10:47 AM

Comments

"Sophisticated" means refined or worldly. However, if you focus on the "sophist" part of the word, "fallacious" is the correct meaning.

So, think of it as sophist-icate, meaning they use false arguments to make their point, and it makes perfect sense. :))

Posted by: ben n at March 13, 2009 01:48 PM

This is what passes for "discourse" in the Middle East.

Posted by: A Reader at March 13, 2009 07:53 PM

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