Israel Needs Britney’s Publicist-Redux

from LK: Unless smuggled weapons are found on any of the ships intercepted today, Israel will have been snookered.  Both the Turks sponsoring the mission and the Israelis themselves knew that the flotilla was, among other things, meant to provoke, and provoke it did.  The lopsided international reaction to Israel’s response is further indication that the world is running on simplistic spin, not accurate analysis of complex issues and events.

I found myself thinking back to the following post, which was written in January of 2009, and how, unfortunately, it’s just as relevant now.  I’ve made a few changes to account for the time that’s passed, but otherwise, the piece still rings true:

Seems like it was just yesterday that Britney Spears mangled her appearance at the MTV awards and her career was declared dead on arrival. Fast forward to the present and she’s topping charts and displaying a clean, healthy air-brushed glow on magazine covers. While she may have made a trip or two to the gym, some bi-coastal publicists did the heavy lifting.

Halfway around the world, in a whole ‘nother arena, there’s Israel, which could easily be portrayed as a victimized, nerdy, but ultra-productive minority group kid, in a neighborhood of intolerant bullies who have no better way to spend their energies than to obsess on destroying that little kid who lives a house or two down the block.

The kid is peppered each day with pushing, shoving, taunts, and crude rockets supplied by Iranian arms dealers. But the kid keeps his cool, until finally, he can keep it no longer, and leaves the house one morning on his treacherous walk to school with a 44 Magnum in one of the side pockets of his backpack. His intent is to stop the bullying, but the kid’s at wit’s end, so he fires at the bullies while they’re trying to blend into the schoolyard crowd. Some innocent bystanders get shot as well. The kid feels lousy but has been pushed to the international version of temporary insanity.

Israel gives horrible PR. So their intense reaction to daily harassment is seen as the precipitating aggression. Their civilian casualties don’t get a tenth of the airtime that those in the Gaza Strip do. The nerd, who would rather play chess and do DNA research, is portrayed as the perp. The street gang is portrayed as the victim. The U.N. buys in. No big surprise there.

Which is why Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ought to put Britney’s publicists on speed dial, make them an offer they can’t refuse, and have them do for his country what they did for Ms. Spears.