A reader brought to my attention an article attempting to deconstruct a short essay I wrote on Gilad Shalit soon after Hamas authorities released him during the latest prisoner exchange. The article, published by “Pro-Israel Bay Bloggers”, asserts that I’ve hit a new low and that my essay is a “sack o’crap”. In keeping with the holiday spirit, we shall examine the author’s criticisms and show that the only “sack o’crap” that exists is the one fixed permanently at his or her doorstep.
The first thing the author fails to do is link to my article. This tactic can only be interpreted as a not-so-deceptive attempt at preventing his or her own readers from accessing the full essay. Sure, readers are free to find the article on their own, but citations and embedded links are a matter of professionalism and courtesy. Nevertheless, compared to the content of this attempted rebuttal, this is but a very trivial matter.
Also noticeable is the author’s skewed selectivism. It is a common strategy to quote only those lines or words that help build your case, but only as long as they remain in context. In this case, the author pulled less than a fifth of the article and managed to avoid commenting on the remaining four-fifths, the parts that deal with the Israeli government’s humanitarian abuses or Shalit’s role at the time of his capture. This will become more apparent in the coming paragraphs. [Read more...]