Monday, July 9, 2007

Sweet Cakes With a Terrorist

New York Times: By ROGER COHEN (IHT)

Roger Cohen seems rather full of himself after chatting up a terrorist leader. I'm not sure I, or anyone who seriously follows Middle East affairs, has much to learn from his report of his encounter over sweet cakes.
Persons who command terror networks can be personally charming, and can learn to say things to credulous journalists they want to hear? Wonderful.
Cohen's piece in the Sunday Times Magazine contained any number of gratuitous, sometimes snide digs at Israel, without shedding much light on the subject of his interview, or the current challenges of Israeli politics. He has become an increasing presence in the Times' web coverage, to no discernible advantage to anyone. (This is not meant as a criticism that he is "anti-Israel"--I prefer tough and informed and meaty reportage--just that his contribution to my understanding is negligible.)

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