In the wake of President Obama’s August 31 announcement that he would seek congressional authorization for military strikes against Syria—even though, in (former constitutional law professor) Obama’s view, he does not need such authorization to order an unprovoked attack against another state—Hillary went up against a panel of pro-Obama “journalists” and surrogates on MSNBC’s “Up With Steve Kornacki,” see here. The eighteen-minute segment has gone at least moderately viral, with multiple Web sites reposting it under titles like “MSNBC War Cheerleaders Get OWNED by Hillary Mann Leverett,” “Lapdog Regime Journalists versus a Bona Fide Expert: Watch the Sparks Fly,” and “Hillary Mann Leverett Is My New Hero.” Or, as Huffington Post put it today, at the top of their media page, “Time for Class: MSNBC Panel Gets SCHOOLED on Syria” and, at the top of the actual post, see here, “Hillary Mann Leverett, Middle East Analyst, Smacks Down MSNBC Panel on Syria.”
It is not surprising, but still disappointing, how much the mainstream media are uncritically falling into line for the Obama administration’s highly questionable case for yet another illegal American war of aggression in the Middle East. It is, of course, to be expected that unrepentant neoconservatives who have learned nothing from the enormous damage that their foreign policy project in the Middle East has done to America’s international position (not to mention millions of innocent human beings) over the last decade. (For those who are interested, over the last few days Hillary has been paired with neoconservatives for discussions of the Syrian conflict and of America’s Syria policy on CCTV, see here, and Al Jazeera, see here.) But most mainstream liberals and pseudo-progressives are no better, as Hillary’s encounter with some of them on MSNBC amply documents.
–Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett