Sunday, March 10, 2002
First, Fisk manages to insert "war on terror," in quotes, five times during the first six paragraphs. These quotes denote that the words inside them should not be taken at face value, but rather represent a grotesque caricature of what these words usually mean. In keeping with this spirit, henceforth I plan to always refer to Robert Fisk as: the "reporter" Robert Fisk.
Second, the "reporter" Robert Fisk gets himself into high dudgeon over events in Afghanistan and the Middle East, concluding: "It is surely time that Europe became involved." You might ask what specific actions the "reporter" Robert Fisk has in mind. Here you go:
It is surely time that Europe became involved. It is surely time that the EU held a summit about these terrible conflicts and involved itself directly. We should be expanding the peace force in Kabul to remove the weapons of Afghanistan and let America move into the swamp of semi- occupation and guerrilla warfare if that is what it wishes. We should be asking Israel to repay the €17.29m (£10.5m) of European taxpayers' money that has been destroyed by the Israeli army in its vandalisation of EU-funded Palestinian infrastructure.
Well, sending more peacekeepers to Afghanistan would be a concrete step, but beyond that the utter paucity of Fisk's imagination is breathtaking. Hold an EU summit? (Will it be as effective as that last one on Zimbabwe? Or the one that degenerated into bickering over where the government offices for production of moldy baguettes should be located?) Send a bill for about $18 million to Israel? Wow, this bold plan would really change the status quo in the Mideast.
There's been a lot of argument recently about the relevance, or lack thereof, of Europe in the world today. It's hard to imagine a starker argument in favor of irrelevance than this column by the "reporter" Robert Fisk.
But the bid to derail Crowe is becoming increasingly bitter - led by a series of stars backing black performers Denzel Washington or Will Smith to win a first Best Actor Oscar since Sidney Poitier in 1963.
Another thinly-populated English-speaking country whose well-deserving competitor is cheated of a first-place prize? Maybe they'll end up giving out two Best Actor trophies this year.