Totten Watch: I Wear My Sun Glasses at Night …

So I can, so I can …

Corey Hart of Arabia, err-Michael Totten (photo: Noah Pollack) is back from Lebanon. And yes, he is safe and sound:

I’m back from a three-week under-the-radar trip to Beirut and South Lebanon … I’m on their “list,” so to speak, and it was both easier and safer to work without announcing my presence and giving them the chance to run interference. I felt slightly ridiculous, like I was being too paranoid

I can just imagine Hizbullah’s war room:

Lieutenant: I think the Israeli tanks crossed the Blue Line this morning.
Commander: Enough with these trifles, a pseudo-journalist approaches Nabatieh. Sound the alarm!

Oh, Michael, tis truly like everything else: a psy-op of the mind …

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14 thoughts on “Totten Watch: I Wear My Sun Glasses at Night …

  1. LOOOOOOOL
    paranioa 100 percent!
    and the funnier thing is when lebanese bloggers feel proud to have their Anti-HA posts ONLY(hmm, coincidence.. hah?)published in his priceless books.

  2. Hi.

    Yes, I did feel more than a little paranoid. But Hezbollah did ACTUALLY threaten me personally with physical violence, and they do (or at least did) monitor my Web site. I know this because they told me so.

    And since Bint Jbail and the Dahiyeh were on my itinerary, it just seemed slightly smarter to keep that itinerary to myself. Not because they would actually harm a Western journalist — I myself said that’s not how they operate — but because I neither needed nor wanted to have their security guys get in my way and kick me out of their area.

    If you think these precautions weren’t necessary, fine. Whatever. Most of my Lebanese friends and contacts think otherwise. And since I’ve never even heard of you before, your opinion counts less.

  3. So Michael, were you actually threatened by the Hizbullah hoi polloi or the notion of Hizbullah? What were you doing in Bint Jbeil & Dahiyeh anyway? Dancing on the graves of the dead? Visiting these places does nothing to lift your credibility, if that’s what motivated you. I’d say CampusWatch is desperately missing your contribution to the witchhunts. Hurry back to the less sinister, fluffy world now.
    PS: dark glasses are a Hollywood convention. In reality, they’ll still recognise you, & I think they “monitor” your site for sheer comic relief.

  4. “So Michael, were you actually threatened by the Hizbullah hoi polloi or the notion of Hizbullah?”

    Yes, I was threatened with physical violence by Hussein Naboulsi, Hezbollah’s former “media relations” liason. I found out a few weeks ago that he was fired after the war in July and replaced with someone more friendly. That was a good call on the part of the leadership.

    Hezbollah also detained one of my colleagues because they suspected he was a Jew. They also threatened and bullied at least five other Western journalists during the July war.

    I really don’t care if you believe me or not.

    “Visiting these places does nothing to lift your credibility”

    It is better to visit these places than write about them from a distance, and everyone (including you) knows it.

    Anyway, I’m done arguing with adolescents. See you around, kids.

  5. Michael,

    Please excuse the passion of my Lebanese protectors, as I appreciate your initial civility. In the interest of journalistic integrity, would you like to sit for an interview? Let me know and be well — dave

  6. Why on earth would you want to interview this guy dave??? Obviously a waste of time. You should know how hard it is to squeeze anything interesting out of people caught in the good & evil dichotomy.
    It’s really spooky, everything is divided along these line: people I heard about (good)/people I havn’t even heard about (bad), grown ups(good)/adolescents (bad). I don’t even dare to have a look at his blog I think I would choke.
    Anyway Dave I’ll see you in Beirut don’t worry I’ll be protecting you from the 14M stupidity that has threatened you on numerous occasions of brain-melting.

  7. So they detained one of Michael’s friends because they suspected he was a ‘Jew’? I got news for you bra, many Jews have traversed Lebanon, even met with Hezbo officials. Does this guy have CIA written all over him or what?

  8. from totten’s latest article:
    A twelve year old kid with a Hezbollah flag saw me and sneered.
    Man that guy is so courageous.. putting himself in such incredible danger just to get a story. I mean a kid sneered at him. I would faint.

  9. About this jew thing, I would presume Nasrallah did not know that Chomsky was a jew when he met him.. (Chomsky was so masochistic that he didn’t meet with any Lebanese official except Nasrallah! haram Chomsky…) Nor when Seymour Hersh interviewed several times… (and kept very good relations with him). These are maybe fake jews.

    The only reason Michael is being scrutinized is because he is the “prick” mentioned by Jij. Hell, I think Hizbullah is being nice to him, after reading the insanities and lies he profers on his tabloidish blog.

    This guy is really pitiful. It is the duty of every person who has a minimum of respect and affection for Lebanon, Palestine and beyond to denounce his hypocrisy:

    1- He does not understand shit about what’s goind on in the region.

    2- He is traumatized by stereotypes that are figments of his imagination, products of a past fed by the consumptionist media he grew up with as a ‘stupid white man’ to use the American lexicon.

    3- He lurs other frustrated people (Lebanese, and others) like him into believing his one-sided view

    I just hope I don’t run through him in Lebanon because he would go through a very bad moment… I won’t be as nice as Hizbullah that’s for sure. I don’t have a political standing to preserve!

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