Israel Derangement Syndrome, 1

The Dish seems to be showing its resentment that the Flotilla narrative in America, and to some extent in other Western countries, is turning to favor Israel. There are some posts under the title “Israel Derangement Syndrome,” which attempt to re-christen the phrase in order to marginalize a set of views on Israel shared by the Israeli mainstream and popular among the American mainstream.

These Dish posts have embarrassing conceptual flaws, but what they lack in logic, they make up for in urgency. It’s as though  the Dish thinks it is supposed to be some kind of lobbyist, or counter-lobbyist. I wonder whether Andrew thinks he has to draw on his rhetorical resources to defend some higher cause in the same way that, before 2003, he would post about Iraq as if he thought he was fighting for the Spanish Republicans, on the side of George Orwell.

Anyway, Michael Totten uses the old meaning of Israel Derangement Syndrome when he talks about his inbox today. Before I venture into the swamp of “IDS” posts on the Dish, I’m going to give in to nostalgia and quote my blog for a good example of that meaning:

I felt that there had become certain issues, where I could rely on The Dish to throw away its interest in stimulating critical thinking and just as often to rally for troops of believers.[…] less than a week ago, Andrew Sullivan wrote that Israel

pre-emptively tried to kill Obama’s attempt to reach out to the Muslim world by the brutal, polarizing Gaza campaign,


What “dissent” would he post, what alternative point of view would he consider, to ideologically balance the “anger and paranoia” (his diagnosis of a certain group of people) responsible for this radical reworking of reality, whereby Israel did not stop the Gaza action because of Obama’s inauguration but sent its own young men into harm’s way in order to thwart new hopes for peace that people saw in an Obama presidency.

How will Andrew Sullivan in this case promote, like F. Scott Fitzgerald said, “the ability to hold two opposing ideas in mind at the same time,” when one idea is so deranged?

[…] Such a complete objectification of other people’s self-regard, projecting one’s own cynical political motives on them, is … clinical.

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