Obama Betrays Israel, According to Somebody or Other

If you just read the headline of this Reuters story by Mark Langfan, it’s pretty shocking: “Report: Obama Threatened to Shoot Down IAF Iran Strike.” But the “story” is a strange chain of dubious reports from suspect sites quoting unnamed sources, all rather transparently cooked up to poison the waters between the U.S. and Israel even more than before on the eve of Bibi Netanyahu’s speech to Congress.

Hart Williams of The Moderate Voice is driven to shouting:

Seriously? SERIOUSLY? ALL second-hand anonymous sources? (Remember, this is an Israeli news service quoting a Yemeni newspaper, who I’m TOTALLY SURE vetted their anonymous sources with utmost care. Right. (And I’ve got a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you, while you’re on the line, here.)

What’s next? Citing an Egyptian newsletter? A Syrian blog post? A Yemeni tweet?

Williams is particularly incensed at the “story’s” out-of-nowhere reference to Zbigniew Brzezinski, who hasn’t wielded power in Washington in decades, as the presumed “author” of Obama’s perfidious betrayal of Israel.

Yeah, this is all pretty weak, and whoever tossed it together has a mighty low opinion of U.S. media or a mighty high estimate of the appetite of conservative gabbers for disinformation. As Williams notes, the “story” bounced around the conservative blogosphere with considerable velocity this morning.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.