RE: Another Example of the Radical Islam Memeplex

From: Lawrence DeBivort (
Date: Sun 15 Dec 2002 - 00:27:06 GMT

  • Next message: "RE: Another Example of the Radical Islam Memeplex"

    Thanks for letting us know you are a MEMRI supporter, Joe.

    > -----Original Message-----
    > From: []On Behalf
    > Of
    > Sent: Saturday, December 14, 2002 2:37 PM
    > To:
    > Subject: RE: Another Example of the Radical Islam Memeplex
    > > I do not consider memri a reliable source. Their material is
    > > overwhelmingly pro-Israeli, and their source of financing hidden.
    > >
    > I'm one of their hidden funding sources; I contributed $20 to their
    > pledge drive, as I consider their work, which is letting the non-arabic-
    > speaking world know what is being said about them in Arabic to be
    > inportant to remaining informed about actual, as opposed to
    > manufactured, opinions.
    > >
    > > IN fairness, some of my friends view their translations as adequately
    > > accurate, but that their selection of what they translate and post is
    > > biased.
    > >
    > They present the negative AND the positive; they have been
    > extensively covering the popular revolt in Iran against conservative
    > clerical rule, and columnists in Saudi Arabia calling for the end of hate-
    > indoctrination in that nation's schools.

    Oh well, yes, I can see that in your mind this would represent both the
    "negative" and the "positive"!


    > > There is a huge amount of disinformation being posted to the Web re.
    > > the Middle East. Web standards of authenticity are poor, largely, I
    > > think, due to the fact that the Web is so populist, and much of the
    > > Web public is gullible. There are specialized lists in which this is
    > > not the case. Our list here is pretty good on memetics, but our
    > > discussions on the Middle East, and our use of sources, is pretty
    > > weak, though better than many!
    > >
    > > So, back to the original question: what are the primary sources?
    > >
    > They were broadcast on middle east television, and the broadcasts are
    > reproduced on the MEMRI site for all to see and hear.

    Joe, I could not match up the materials you posted with MEMRI site broadcasts. But even if they could be matched up, we are left with the matter of MEMRI's own pro-Israel, anti-Muslim bias.

    > > Joe -- do you remember a bunch of sound-bite quotes you put up here
    > > about the Palestinians evacuating their lands in 47-48? I think you
    > > got back to your 'pro-Israeli' site to try and find the source, and
    > > that you got back a reference to yet another derivative site, but no
    > > primary source.
    > >
    > The source was an Egyptian journalist, who, I'm quite sure, has more
    > knowledge of the area's history, and more access to original news
    > accounts of the time, than you ever will. Not everything is on the web.

    There is no need for 'everything' to the on the web: simple primary source citations will do. If the material you posted is authentic, there must be a primary source for it. Why don't you simply post it, if it exists?

    > >
    > > It is easy, on the Web, so stuff to be invented and then circulated
    > > enough that it takes on patina if not veracity. That is why primary
    > > sources are essential. You will note that when Jeremy, I, and others
    > > were discussing, for example, the WWI liberation of Damascus, we all
    > > used primary sources. I think that if you really want to argue your
    > > anti-Islamic case, you will have to do the same. But you rely
    > > endlessly and naively on such as Daniel Pipes, "ibn Warraq", the
    > > Hoover Institute, MEMRI, etc. Could you not simply discipline
    > > yourself to use primary sources? They do exist in profusion.
    > > Journalists publish in specific newspapers, which have specific dates.
    > > Academics publish in Journals and books, with dates, publishers and
    > > titles. Experts give talks at conferences that publish proceedings, on
    > > certain dates and places.
    > >
    > Actually, the sources I use, such as FOREIGN AFFAIRS, POLICY
    > NEW YORKER, HARPERS, etc. are among the most respected (by the
    > unagendaed and unbiased) in the field.

    Yes, some of these are respected, and others are not. It is a mix. I notice, with delight, that you have dropped references to Daniel Pipes and "ibn Warraq." On the whole, the sources you list here are definitely a cut or two above them.
    > >
    > > You do a lot of cutting and pasting, but severely weaken your case by
    > > depending on derivative, inexpert, or biased sources, or, indeed,
    > > pasting things without any references at all.
    > >
    > Actually, I've seen a shovel-load more referencing from myself than I've
    > ever seen from you - so much, that people have actually complained
    > about it here.

    I don't think so, Joe. Can you cite any complaint about my references?

    I know you THINK you give a lot of sources, but compromised sources, simply, aren't worth anything, which is why I keep asking for primary ones, if you want to be taken seriously. It's your choice, of course. No one can force you to provide primary sources, and I don't expect my reminders to you will.

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