1. An expression of agreement that is not supported by real conviction
2. Insincerity by virtue of pretending to have qualities or beliefs that you do not really have
The definition above comes from my WordWeb dictionary. Effing convenient, you just press a shortcut key and presto! Still, a better definition (by example) of hypocrisy will be "do as I say and not as I do". At least for the purpose of this post here.
It started with a friend (who decided to remain unnamed) sending me a link to an article in Pravda (knowing Russian is a heavy cross sometimes). It appears that the friend does not need my hardly existent expertise in all things Russian, since the article is authored by a person with a double-barreled British name - Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey.
Not knowing Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey from a Brazilian bullfrog and, in general, being wary of double-barreled names and especially their carriers, I have started googling. Thanks deity, Scott Burgess provides here the full and clear definition of this person.
I have just discovered the wonderful Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey of the pravda.ru editorial staff. I really must take readers to task for not having previously informed me of this luminary's work. Mr. Bancroft-Hinchey, who feels that "the main trait that journalists must have is modesty," describes himself as "one of the leading English song-writers of the 1980s." Presumably disenchanted with the glamour of "three Eurovision contests, three albums, two maxi-singles and five singles," he turned to journalism to satisfy his "need to talk and tell."
Scott's article linked above is highly recommended. And hilarious, too.
So, a song writer turned journalist. No problems, it could happen to the best of us. Additional googling, however, shows that, besides being one of the Pravda regulars, our friend Timothy B.H. frequently appears on places like rense dot com, mindfully dot org and other places much, much more odious than even Pravda. And now Timothy makes a case for putting the State of Israel on trial:
The State of Israel is hereby accused of committing War Crimes in the conflict with Hezbollah IN Lebanon (July 12th to August 12th 2006). We present and document four counts where the Geneva Convention has been seriously breached.
Copiously quoting from the Geneva Convention, the man uses a highly polished legal language (does he have another talent, hitherto hidden?). Of course, the vehicle of this article, the infamous Pravda, the same august organ that used to rain fire and brimstone on Chechnya, is hardly suitable for a discussion of Geneva Convention or, for that matter, of anything human or humane. But not being of a legal persuasion myself, I was in a quandary.
Thankfully, another friend send me another article, by another Brit. This time it is Frederick Forsyth. True, Forsyth could not boast about any songs on Eurovision, albums, singles or doubles etc. But he can be proud of a long and colorful career as a reporter and a writer, and is an ex-RAF pilot to boot.
And the article saves me a lot of work answering the odious piece by and odious person in an odious media organ, so here are some key quotes from it:
It must surely be true that the level of lies and hypocrisy that a society can tolerate is in direct proportion to the degeneration of that culture. Personally I am not particularly pro or anti Israel, pro or anti Arab or pro or anti Islam. But I do have a dislike of myth, hypocrisy and lies as opposed to reality, fairness and truth.
Watching the bombing of Lebanon it is impossible not to feel horror and pity for the innocent civilians killed, wounded or rendered homeless. But certain of our politicians, seeking easy populism and the cheapest round of applause in modern history, have called the Israeli response "disproportionate." Among the politicos are Jack Straw and that master of EU negotiations William Hague.
Here is my point. In all those 73 days of bombing Serbia I never heard one British moralist use the word "disproportionate." The entire point of Hezbollah is not to resolve some border dispute with Israel; its aim is to wipe Israel off the map, as expressed by Hezbollah"s master, the crazed Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran. That aim includes the eradication of every Israeli Jew; i.e. genocide. Serbia never once threatened to wipe the UK off the map or slaughter our citizens, yet Straw, in office in 1999, and Hague, leading the Conservative Party, never objected to Serbia being bombed.
As an ex-RAF officer I am persuaded the Israelis fighter pilots are hitting civilian-free targets with 95% of their strikes. These are the hits no TV network bothers to cover. It is the 5% that causes the coverage and the horror: wrong target, unseen civilians in the cellar, misfire, unavoidable collateral casualties. Unavoidable? Israel has said in effect, "If you seek to wipe us out we will defend ourselves to the death. You offer us no quarter, so we will offer none to you. But if you choose intentionally, inadvertently, or through the stupidity of your government to protect and shelter the killers among yourselves then with deepest regret, we cannot guarantee your exemption."
That's it. Mr Double-Barrel. Take it and swallow it.
Cross-posted on Yourish.com
19 August 2006