By Dan Fleshler | February 2, 2008
I was so mortified by the bile that prompted the previous post that I somehow missed a clarification in Politico. This is why they invented newpaper editors and why the blogosphere is out of control:
An Obama spokesman, Tommy Vietor, says, “Rob Malley has no day-to-day advisory role in the Obama campaign. He is among many people who has given his advice to the campaign. The actual day-to-day Middle East advisor is Dan Shapiro.”
Marty Peretz — in his defense of Obama on Israel — accepts the Obama explanation. Per Peretz:
“There are all kinds of spooky rumors that a man named Robert Malley is one of Obama’s advisers, specifically his Middle East adviser. His name comes up mysteriously and intrusively on the web, like the ads for Viagra. Malley, who has written several deceitful articles in The New York Review of Books, is a rabid hater of Israel. No question about it. But Malley is not and has never been a Middle East adviser to Barack Obama. Obama’s Middle East adviser is Dan Shapiro. Malley did, though, work for Bill Clinton. He was deeply involved in the disastrous diplomacy of 2000. Obama at the time was in the Illinois State Senate. So, yes, this is a piece of experience that Obama lacks.”
So now we have an interesting dilemma, the kind they probably don’t teach in journalism school yet. Should I just delete the entire previous post? The arguments are still valid, and the attacks on Malley, including the latest from Peretz, are still very creepy. But in its own small way, does the previous post call attention to accusations that otherwise will not be noticed? Does it keep alive a controversy about the Obama campaign that should be left for dead? Does this post make matters worse?
Or should both posts remain on “Realistic Dove” because false charges and unfair characterizations don’t vanish from the digital world, they are perpetually reified by the search engines and forwarded emails, and at least a few people need to answer them so that inquiring minds can find alternative perspectives?
If you have some thoughts but don’t want to comment publicly, please send advice to firstname.lastname@example.org.