I just couldn’t stop laughing when I heard Arab analysers calling Chavez a great Arab leader! I knew the Arabs were desperate, I didn’t know we were THIS desperate!
And on Saturday, when David Welsh was visiting Lebanon and meeting with Sanioora, a bunch (I don’t think there were even a hundred person) of protestors, and some even thought it would be smart to write solidarity slogans to Chavez, they even took the effort to write a few words in Spanish. I wonder if they even bothered to ask themselves who the hell Chavez is anyway.
In fact, in my surrounding people didn’t really care who Chavez was or what he was saying. They all shared my amusement when I started telling them who Chavez was, his notorious style of speech, and his love for drug culture… No really we had a lot of fun. Muchos gracias Chavez, you make war much more fun to live.
But in general, this gets us back to the information problem in the Arab world. The Lebanon has no vital interests in Latin America, except in Brazil where the Lebanese population’s huge, but even there the connections are only emotional not really strategic. So it is understandable that the Lebanese people wouldn’t know much about Chavez. But why didn’t the media fulfil its role of revealing these interesting facts about those that some are praising as the great Arab leader. I remember when the American representative in the UN was receiving some medal in the UN, and there were OUTRAGE that the Lebanese delegation didn’t refuse to participate! And why? Because Mr. Bolton was a Jew, so according to them he’s a dirty Israeli Zionist criminal that supports the Jewish plan to invade the Arab world and kill the Arabs, destroy the 3ourouba, the Arab culture… Am I the only one who sees the Arab media as a little unfair?
Oh Oh… wait that’s not all… what’s the most popular argument to explain the Israeli support for the Government’s invasion? The Israeli army is imposing censorship on Israeli media. No don’t laugh, they are so serious about it, they mean it. They shout about it on TV, they tell you how the Israeli army has pressured Al-Jazeera reporters in Israel. Here’s a hint people:
I would bet that Al-Jazeera has more freedom of speech in Israel than it does in any other Arab country. It is just that Israelis are probably not very pleased in receiving reporters that are here to say: “The Israeli devil’s demoralised, there long lasting attempts in destroying all the surrounding Arab governments…”
In addition, how come no Arab TV station states the amount of restrictions they were submitted to from their beloved Hezbollah? I recall that famous Kalem Ennes episode last week about the role played by fire fighters, Red Cross and Media. At one stage they had on the table cameramen from the main TV stations active in the South: LBC (Lebanon), Al-Jazeera (Qatar), Future TV (Lebanon), New TV (Lebanon) and I am no longer certain about the other two. At one stage the conversation mentioned the restrictions imposed by the security forces, or armed forces in general, the question was about the reporter’s reaction when s/he is forbidden the access to scene, and of course there were immediate mention of the security concerns regarding the reporters’ lives, but the reporters also mentioned an incident in the South where Hezbollah forbid the reporters from entering Mr. Ghanem asked them immediately: Why were you banned from entering?
Most of them tried to justify it with security concerns, the LBC cameramen made a clear objection:
-No it had nothing to do with our own security. It was about something else.
-I don’t know it was not about our security, it was about there own security, I don’t know what it was.
Such a remark is a very clear indication that Hezbollah was not as democratic as he was claiming, and the real hiding of truths took place on the Hezbollah part, and not the Israeli one. Anyway, when the LBC cameraman said this there were those brief moments of silence, almost like a schism among the group, all had agreed on the unity that results from living the war experience, and the other cameramen had wished maybe this subject wouldn’t be mentioned, that the censorship practiced by Hezbollah wouldn’t be portrayed as a censorship, they wanted to keep on pretending that Hezbollah was just doing what it took to achieve this huge Arab victory. But hey! Lies can’t last forever.