There are plenty of rational criticisms to be made of Chuck Hagel, including the fact that he only has one facial expression. Recently, however, rumors flew that Chuck–acting in his capacity as a professional jerkface who's hell-bent on destroying Israel–gave paid speeches to a group called "Friends of Hamas."
Today we learn that these rumors were accidentally kindled by reporter Dan Friedman, who made the mistake of attributing a sense of humor to one of his Capitol Hill sources:
Hagel was in hot water for alleged hostility to Israel. So, I asked my source, had Hagel given a speech to, say, the "Junior League of Hezbollah, in France"? And: What about "Friends of Hamas"?
The names were so over-the-top, so linked to terrorism in the Middle East, that it was clear I was talking hypothetically and hyperbolically. No one could take seriously the idea that organizations with those names existed — let alone that a former senator would speak to them.
The "story" of Hagel's associations found its way to Breitbart.com, courtesy of Ben Shapiro, from whence it spread far and wide through the echo chamber. The stupid burned brightly in all aspects of this story, but a few very special winners stand out:
* Ben Shapiro earns two and half derps for publishing the original Friends of Hamas story, then arguing that "the story Breitbart News ran originally was accurate and clearly caveated." "Clearly caveated" should be its own Pulitzer category.
* Everyone who picked up the story (Lou Dobbs! Hugh Hewitt!) earns a derp and a half for not realizing that Friends of Hamas is a stupid name for a front group. There's a reason why North Korea bills itself as the Democratic People's Republic, and not Frigid Communist Death Cult Theme Park.
* The intrepid commenters on the Daily News website, some of whom are having an actual discussion about friendsofhamas.com, a giffed-up website created this morning by Gawker writer Max Read. It has an animated corgi! This is how you know it is a serious piece of terrorist internet. Three derps plus a smiley face.
Of course none of us will be laughing when we discover that Hagel really did give a dinner speech to the Daughters of the Russian Revolution.
Chuck Hagel's Haters
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: Chuck Hagel, Conservatives, Hamas, Internet, Israel, Media