The Psychology of Beliefs About the Hezbollah War.--

There are several highly interesting long posts on the psychological makeup of those who interpret the Hezbollah War (and the world) in irrational terms.

Perhaps the most interesting is at ShrinkWrapped, which I would recommend reading in its entirety.

But Richard Landes also has some good insights, though his tone deteriorates somewhat as he gets worked up over the abusive nonsense he is fisking. Landes's analysis is "The 'Left' Takes on the Qana Affair: Fisking the Daily Kos". What is stunning is that the Kos diarist Smintheus seems to trust the motives of Hezbollah more than he does those of conservative bloggers. Although he doesn't say so flatly, he seems to me to find it hard to believe that in the midst of such a tragedy as Qana, Hezbollah could be so callous as to stage photos of the bodies of the dead children pulled from the rubble.

This brings to mind the last great supposed Israeli massacre, Jenin, where a gullible world press falsely reported hundreds of Palestinians massacred, when even Fatah ended up claiming that there were 56 deaths, compared to the 23 lost by the Israelis at Jenin (apparently, it was a battle, not a massacre). Mark Steyn recalls a failed attempt to stage one of the deaths there:

Anxious to lend the west's agitated humanitarians a helping hand, a group of Palestinians in Jenin held a funeral a week ago for one of their massacred compatriots and invited a cameraman along. The deceased, covered in a shroud, was being borne on a stretcher to his final resting place when, alas, his bearers stumbled and the body fell to the ground. The "corpse" picked himself up, dusted himself off and climbed back on the stretcher to start all over again. Unfortunately, the clumsy pallbearers managed to drop him a second time. At this point, the crowd, who apparently weren't in on the scheme, fled in terror. The stiff, meanwhile, had had enough of his bungling bearers and flounced off in a huff.

Because I am traveling on Saturday, I will turn on comments for only 11 hours.