"...A tense and edgy delegation arrived in New York on August 8 to plead the Arab case.
Dan Gillerman, the Israeli ambassador to the UN, didn’t have to do much at those deliberations — simply listen to the complaints, appear to be the least obstructionist in the room, and restate his country’s position, as absurd as it may have sounded by that point, that Israel’s bombs were in fact helping the Lebanese people to free themselves from the “cancer” of Hezbollah that had metastasized in their midst. In this last task, he had an unusual ally: “I believe that one courageous Lebanese youngster was speaking for many when he wrote in his Internet blog, and I quote, ‘It is not only Israeli soldiers that the Hezbollah has taken hostage. It is us, the people of Lebanon.’”
This “Lebanese youngster” was, of course, a blogger, and maybe the first to have his words bounce off the solemn walls of the United Nations. And though he probably would not have appreciated being deployed as a weapon in Israel’s public-relations war, the presence of his independent voice, a counterintuitive opinion not filtered through any official source, said a lot about the power of Middle Eastern Web logs to expose a hidden trove of multiple perspectives in a world that the West often imagines as having only one perspective — that of the “Arab Street,” a place of conformity, of mass acquiescence to singular passions, be they blind support for a dictator or seething hatred of Israel.
Last summer was, in fact, a watershed moment for the Middle Eastern blogosphere..."