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I'm wondering if there is some immutable law that the size of political demonstrations increases with the distance from the reporting country. A New York Times headline today announces that "Hundreds of Thousands of Lebanese Rally Against Syria"--apparently affirming the White House propaganda that the US slaughter of Iraqis somehow caused democracy to bust out all over the Middle East. Yet when hundreds of thousands rallied in Washington and New York against Bush's planned aggression, it was reported as "tens of thousands." Also missing from the headline, but included in the body of the article, was the fact that the week before in Lebanon, a "pro-Syrian march ... also filled the downtown with hundreds of thousands of mostly Shiite demonstrators." Yet when hundreds of thousands rallied in Washington and New York for Bush's planned aggression--oh, wait, there were no such demonstrations.

UPDATE (as I'm writing this). Since it might be less than clear from the opposed nature of the huge Lebanese demonstrations that the most recent protest is a victory for Bush, the Times just changed its headline to the more helpful "Rally Against Syria Appears to Be Largest Yet in Lebanon." O-kay.

- tom moody 3-14-2005 8:01 pm [link]