Thursday, April 29, 2004

Conspiracy-mongering is alive and well in Norway, on NRK, Norway's national public radio network. They apparently set out to "prove" that there was a secret cabal of dissenting Christians who were acting as agents for the Israeli government. They did so by hounding pro-Israeli activists and people trying to organize a Norwegian conference on European anti-Semitism and the Palestinian terror-bombings, until they were able to get a few of them to use the right words in more-or-less the right sequence on tape, and then edited the hell out of the result. It's being called the "Norwegian Protocols".

This is ugly on the face of the matter, but the interesting and strange thing to me seems to be the dissenting-Christian angle. Norway, like all the Scandinavian countries, and like most of Europe, has an established Church, Lutheran in Norway's case. The line seems to have been, that the established Lutheran Church was strongly anti-Israeli, and therefore dissenting Churches - called "independent" in the letter provided - were suspect & believed to be cats-paws for the Israeli foreign service. It rather seems as if bigotry against dissenters and leftist anti-Semitism has come together in this situation to produce an outrage more typical of the Egyptians than what is nominally a free media.

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