Thursday, January 05, 2006

Ariel: an observation on his profiles

Just watched the television news about Ariel Sharon. What I found interesting in the retrospective of his career was that not once was anything bad said about him (e.g. Shatila, Jenin, the Wall, the massacre of Innocents etc), a stark contrast from what was said about him when he became Prime Minister of Israel.

The NZ Herald, whose foreign news section is coloured by articles from Independent (due to having the same owner), simply runs an a biography that is sourced to the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Even their quick facts about him merely states that he incurred "Arab enmity" for the invasion of Lebanon and a "crushing response" to the second Intifada. Looking overseas, the BBC profile mentions his indirect responsibility for the Shatila and Sabra massacres halfway down the page where the unpalatable facts usually get mentioned.

Clearly the withdrawal from Gaza has demolished the depiction of Sharon as the war-criminal supreme in a way that was unthinkable not so long ago.