Thursday, January 8, 2009

Spotlight: Attempted Smear on Pro-Palestinian Doctor Mads Gilbert by Fox News

If you've been watching the international media coverage of Israel's assault on Gaza for the last week or so, you've probably seen some clips of Dr. Mads Gilbert, a Norwegian physician working in Gaza City's beleaguered Shifa Hospital. Dr. Gilbert has been an outspoken and courageous voice in the Anglophone media for Palestinian rights and humanity during the slaughter.

Apparently, the Fox News apparatchiks decided that something must be done. They turned to NGO Monitor, a right wing Israeli group that specializes in putting out press releases explaining why Amnesty International is full of anti-semites. (The liberal Zionist magazine the Forward has a pretty devastating take down of NGO-M's disregard for anything factual, available here.) NGO Monitor has done some digging and discovered that Dr. Gilbert is - horror of horrors! - a Marxist activist with the Norwegian "Red" party, a Maoist group.

Besides this, NGO Monitor has unearthed some statements Dr. Gilbert made about Sept. 11th, which assert that terrorism is justified in the context of oppression. Given Fox News' strident cheerleading of terror by those aren't oppressed (Israel and the US), I'm not sure what they're complaining about.

My favorite part of the article is the last part, where the head of NGO Monitor, Gerald Steinberg, pontificates on Dr. Gilbert's supposed violations of the Hippocratic Oath (Dr. Steinberg is a professor of political science). Then an actual medical ethicist informs us that having a political viewpoint does not necessarily disqualify one from practicing medicine.

If this is the best they can do, our side is doing better than I thought.

Harry's Place has also taken up the cudgels against Gilbert. They add nothing to the Fox News article besides copious baiting for his Maoism.