<figure> <img src="https://cdni.rt.com/files/2018.10/article/5bcdfac5fc7e93581b8b45bf.jpg"> <figcaption>© AFP / Tolga Akmen / <span class="copyright">Free</span></figcaption> </figure> <strong>Bellingcat blog founder and Western media darling Eliot Higgins has demonstrated once and for all, in a real-life, non-Twitter debate with MIT Professor Theodore Postol, that his own expertise and credentials are severely lacking.</strong> The debate, which focused on the alleged Khan Sheikhoun chemical weapons attack, revealed that Higgins seems to feel more comfortable arguing his points on the constricted medium of Twitter, where complex topics can be boiled down to snappy soundbites and where you can simply brand your opponent a<em> “joke”</em> and bail from the discussion at any time.
READ MORE: Despite mainstream glory, questions raised about Bellingcat authenticity and Skripal poisoning case
If Higgins had acted the way he does on Twitter in real life, he would have jumped up from his seat halfway through the debate, shouted something like “F*ck it, you’re an idiot!” and stormed off. Of course, this would look fairly unprofessional and a bit insane in a real-life context, and so the British blogger muddled on, showing himself to perhaps not be such a great expert after all.
Higgins is well known for his Twitter antics and put-downs of anyone who might dare to disagree with him or the conclusions of his “open-source” social media investigations (which conveniently always manage to bolster NATO narratives), but we thought we’d take a look back at some of his classics.
1. Ted Postol the “idiot”
Higgins had previously refused to debate Postol on the basis that he was an “idiot” and a “joke” — despite the professor’s solid credentials, which are in stark contrast to his own. Postol had challenged Bellingcat’s theories and the Western narrative about the alleged Khan Sheikhoun attack in his own 14-page assessment of the incident.
2. Yasha Levine the “conspiracy theorist”
Investigative journalist and author Yasha Levine has challenged Higgins on multiple occasions on Twitter, asking questions about Bellingcat’s sources of funding and accusing him of having “no real expertise — or really any kind of real authority” on the subjects he professes to know a lot about. So, naturally, Levine has also been on the receiving end of Higgins’ Twitter flame-throwing. Higgins has accused the journalist being a “tankie and conspiracy theorist”.
3. Everyone can “Suck my balls”
An unfortunate image for anyone who happens to follow Higgins on Twitter, this directive has become one of the former underwear salesman’s go-to responses to anyone daring to question his competence.
4. Caitlin Johnstone and Vanessa Beeley
These are two other journalists that Higgins seems to have a real problem with, primarily, as usual, due to the fact that they don’t bow down in awe and wonder at his US-government-funded brilliance. Higgins recently revealed his true colors, calling the Australia-based Johnstone “Grotbags” on Twitter after she wrote that it was illegitimate to refer to him simply as a “citizen journalist” given his affiliations and funders, which include the US government and Saudi-linked think tanks. He also suggested she might possibly have a “mental illness” — something he likely suspects of anyone who disagrees with him.
Independent British investigative journalist Vanessa Beeley has also been branded as “bonkers” by the Bellingcat blogger, who once took aim at her inability to create sufficiently fancy presentation slides – an unsurprising insult from someone accustomed to masking his lack of expertise with a shiny NATO-funded veneer of credibility.
5. All the other idiots
Higgins’ favorite insult of all, however, is a simple one. Whether a credentialed MIT professor or lowly Twitter troll, Higgins really loves to call people who disagree with him “idiots”.
Luckily Johnstone and Beeley, however, were awarded the distinct honor of being referred to respectively as a “professional idiot” and a “verified idiot”.
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