In The New Middle: The World After The Arab Spring, senior BBC employee Paul Danahar tries to convey the impression that his book is a Western writer's sympathetic attempt to describe and analyse the convulsions of the "Arab Spring" and its impact on the Middle East. While narrating contemporary events, he also devotes a lot of space on the history of the Middle East and its long interaction with the West. Sounds quite innocent, doesn't it? No, not at all!
This book certainly isn't any innocent journalism. And it certainly isn’t a journalist’s failed attempt at trying out his hand in writing some contemporary history.
On the contrary, it is a disguised attempt to subvert global public understanding of the happenings in the unfortunate Middle East. It is a calculated, cold-blooded, dishonest and utterly shameless attempt to obfuscate the outsider’s knowledge and concept of what is going on inside the Middle East.
Basically, it is a Westerner’s contribution to the US-led West’s global propaganda war to justify and increase Western expansion and control over the economic resources, markets, lives and destiny of the unfortunate populations of the Middle East nations. Dressed in sheep’s clothes, the book stealthily proceeds like a wolf for the kill. Paul Danahar is no journalist. Paul Danahar is no book writer. Paul Danahar is a Western soldier in the service of Western imperialism.
All through the 480-page book, the author pretends that he is a neutral observer of contemporary Middle East convulsions. But he welcomes the NATO air raids on Libya that were designed to and succeeded in toppling Muammar Gaddafi, the Libyan nationalist, who had ousted his country’s Western collaborator King Idris in 1969 and asserted Libya’s sovereignty ever since. Incidentally, the West’s puppets who are now ruling Libya have re-instated the flag and national anthem of the former monarchy. This is a great victory, both real and symbolic, for the Western powers and their agenda of aggression.
Danahar then goes on to lament the fact that Russia and China had used their veto powers at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to prevent a US-induced North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) attack on Syria to oust the country’s nationalist leader Bashar-al-Assad – on the lines of the earlier NATO attack that led to the ouster and eventual cruel and gory death of one of the world’s greatest challengers to US-led Western imperialism – Muammar Gaddafi.
Danahar’s “historical” narrative of Egypt and Israel and their conflict, too, is highly selective. He even pretends that the Western powers were often divided over the handling of conflicts and wars in the region. He leaves out the fundamental fact the Western powers have no disagreements about their basic need to control the Middle East so that it serves Western economic and geo-strategic interests rather than their own national sovereign interests.
Danahar has no problems with the basic illegality and unjustness of the Western countries’ presence, resource extortion and exploitation in that part of the world for so many decades. Throughout the book, he repeatedly sides with the individuals and forces in those countries that are fundamentally soft to the West. And he continuously demonises the Middle Eastern national heroes who have struggled valiantly to end the West’s control over these nations and their people.
Mind you, Danahar has plenty of lip service, pretension and crocodile tears for the unfortunate populations of the Middle East countries. But side by side, there is also plenty of clever subversion of facts and data. There are huge omissions of historically significant events and equally blatant misrepresentations of various incidents. Danahar also gives false assessments of key personalities – to ensure that the reader ends up admiring those who weren’t or aren’t a real threat to US-led Western expansionism and hates those who are actually determined – even at the cost of their lives – to end the West’s aggression and subjugation of the Middle East countries.
In The New Middle: The World After The Arab Spring, BBC ‘journalist’ Paul Danahar has no hesitation in painting black as white and white as black. The book is coloured from cover to cover by the interests of the US-led West. It, however, does serve one serious purpose. It illustrates once again that there is an urgent and serious need to combat the US-led Western nations’ propaganda war on the Middle East – and in fact on most other parts of the world.
The West has huge resources. But their Middle Eastern opponents have equal or more force of conviction. Although some honest books have, indeed, been published about the Western nations’ decades-old military and economic aggression against the Middle East countries, they are vastly outnumbered by the books brought out by the West and their not too few Middle Eastern collaborators.
And the books written by the Western expansionists and Middle Eastern apologists of foreign domination enjoy vastly superior circulation and marketing efforts. On this front too, the opponents of US-led Western imperialism must vastly step up their efforts. The Middle East will not give up without a fight. And in the end – as has been illustrated every time in history – the Middle East will ultimately win against the US-led West.