(By Ray D.)
In an article published on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Stern magazine labels US National Security Advisor and future Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice "The Voice of her Master.” And if that weren’t bad enough, a picture intended to make Stern's condescending message unmistakably clear accompanies the article:
“Always at the Service of her Master George W. Bush: Condoleezza Rice.”
Rice is portrayed as a loyal servant of the Bush family who has been installed as a "yes" (wo)man for the second term. Stern author Katja Gloger writes:
"Condoleezza Rice, loyally devoted to President Bush, will take over as the second women to be Secretary of State, a PR measure of the special sort. She is to propagate the vision of democratization in the world. She has yet to say what she herself thinks."
So, according to Ms. Gloger, Condoleezza Rice is not just an obedient servant always at the foot of her master, but also a special "PR measure" too subservient and devoted to have her own opinion. Well, apparently Ms. Gloger hasn't read this, this, this or this or this or any of the dozens of other interviews and speeches Ms. Rice has given over the past few years in which she has clearly and repeatedly expressed her own views on the issues. (By the way: It took me less than 15 minutes to find those interviews and speeches...journalistic laziness Ms. Gloger?)
Rice there to Remind Bush of America's "Godly Mission" in "Clear, Simple Words"
And of course no article on America would be complete without the standard collection of hackneyed, leftist stereotypes required to satisfy Stern's audience. You guessed it: Bush is a simple-minded religious fanatic who needs the world explained to him in "clear, simple words." Stern writes of Rice and Bush:
"They pray together and in the case that George W. Bush wishes it, Condi explains the conflicts of this world to him in clear, simple words. Most of the time the godly mission of America plays an important role. But what she really thinks, the convictions that she really holds are things that she has yet to reveal. (...)
His clear election result strengthens Bush in his conviction: America must change the world in a godly mission, as, for example, in Iraq."
Clearly, Ms. Gloger is telling her editors and her audience what they want to hear. Unfortunately, her statements have little to do with Mr. Bush's true thoughts on faith and foreign policy. Here again, she has failed to research the issue. In a recent interview with Brit Hume, the President had the following to say when asked what role, if any, his faith played in foreign policy decisions:
"HUME: How do you hold the situation in Iraq in juxtaposition to your faith?
BUSH: Well, I -- first of all, I would never justify -- I would never use God to promote foreign policy decisions."
Stern magazine, along with most of the German media, is constantly misrepresenting George W. Bush's personal faith as a key driving factor in his policy formulation and lending it far more importance than it actually has. They don't need to research what Bush and Rice have actually said and done because they have already established a preset template of stereotypes from which they can no longer depart. It is all a part of the branding of Bush that has been going on in the German media for years now. That is why a coherent German-American political dialogue has become so difficult. Germans and Americans live in two different worlds when it comes to perceptions of George W. Bush. Until the universally negative reporting on Bush in the German media stops, little is bound to change.
Note: You may contact Stern's online Editor-in-Chief, Barbara Hamm, with your comments on Ms. Gloger's article by clicking here. For those of you who don't speak German, "Betreff" is "Subject" and "Nachricht" is "Message". Just enter your subject, name, email address and message and then click on the red "Senden" button. Please feel free to post your messages and any replies in the comments section.
Interesting "Nipper" sidenote: A number of readers have pointed this out in the comments section. It is remarkably similar. Perhaps Ms. Gloger collects phonographs in her spare time when she's not busy writing racist, America-bashing articles for Stern.