The Arab Media Response to the Wikileaks

I joked today on Twitter that I believe the world will probably deal with this the same way regular people deal with post-one-night-stand-hook-up awkwardness: Everyone had their fun but seen each other naked and now they just wanna do their walk of shame and pretend it never happened.I have been monitoring media websites the entire day waiting to see how the different arab medias will cover the subject , betting that they will either ignore it completely or focus on what was said in the name of the leaders of the other arab countries instead of their own. It seems that the media honchos decided that they couldn't ignore the news completely, so they went with option #2. Here is the breakdown:

In Egypt I focused on two "independent" media outlets, Masrway and shorouk news . Here is what they said respectively:

Masrawy mainly focused on two aspects: The awkwardness that has befallen the US gulf allies from the leak , and everything that had to do with Iran on them, fromthe US closely inspecting Iranian diplomats who went to Iraq, to the report that Iran used the Red Crescent to send weapons to Hezbollah during the Lebanon war, to how the wikileaks won't affect Iran's diplomatic relations with its neighbours . There was one mention about how Turkey's Erdogan simply hates Israel. No mention of Egypt at all.

Shorouk , on the other hand, went all over the place with their coverage, from focusing on Qhathafi's suspect relationship with his nurse , to Burlesconi's jovial reaction to what was written , and ending it with an article on how Israel sees great benefit in the Iran wikileaks and how Erdogan doesn't believe the website to be credible . No mention of Egypt, plus subtley making it look like it was all an israeli plot. Bravo Shorouk, you get bonus points for a job well done.

AlJazeera:

As expected, AlJazeera ignored everything said about Qatar, and instead had one article about how the arabs (sans qatar, duhh) have tired to goad the US to attack Iran , and then two articles on how wikileaks embaresses US foriegn policy and whether or not those documents should be published in the first place.

And finally, we have Alarabiya:

Saudi owned AlArabiya went with the weirdest option of them all. They published one article , titled how Saudi and Iran asked the US to be firmer on the US (mentioned in passing in one paragraph) and then went into lengthy detail on how Qatar said they lie to the Iranians who lie back, Israeli diplomacy and the role of Egypt in the 2009 Ghaza War.That is all.

So, in conclusion, the arab media oultlets are sticking to their guns, ignoring or glossing over news that deal with their leaders, and focusing instead of the regional enemies or making the whole thing look like a farce. Given how very few options they actually have (god forbid they actually cover the news accurately), I think they did a very fine Job in reporting on this, without looking the bottom-feeding biased hacks that they are.

God bless you Julian Assenge. We wouldn't be having so much fun if it wasn't for your geeky ass.

No Wardrobe this time..at all..

The nice wholesome family-oriented people of Arizona were greeted by a 30 second porn clip during the superbowl. This means it took the Channel 30 seconds to figure out that someone is streaming porn to the masses watching national network television on a sunday afternoon and stop it. Outrage is bound to ensue, and lawsuits and such. But really..be honest..it beat Janet Jackson 40 year old titty, didn't it?

Find the crime

AlJazeera has posted a story with this headline: "Accusations made against Egypt of giving AID to the UNRWA instead of the dissolved government of Hamas, with coordination with Israel and the PA"

Now, whomever figures out what exactly is Egypt's crime here to warrant an accusation, gets a cookie and a big wet smooch on the cheeck!

Huffington Post stealing content

As someone who is somehwat familair with the Huffington Post operation, including their fantastic habit of not hiring writers, and calling whatever crap their self-important non-paid writers puke on a page "blogging", I am simply astounded about the fact that they were caught stealing content from other lesser known blogs and still no apologizing for it or stopping it. So that's what being a "progressive blog" means nowadays? Fine, but one question: On what, exactly, do they spend their venture cpaitilist provided funding and their and webad revenues on? Arianna's hair can't cost that much to do, can it?

For the unemployed amongst you

If there is ever a benefit for a blogger to no longer having a job, it's that it gives him/her more time to blog, and thsoe two bloggers did just that. For all of you who are unemployed, on your way to being unemployed, or are just suffering from serious job insecuirty, I give you the Unemploymentality blog. It should help get you through the day, provide you of an unemployment survival guide of sorts, and will remind you that there are benefits to being a jobless bum. Should provide you with entertainment and even hope, if you are HATING your (new) job enviroment (as much as I am at the moment. Hate those fuckers. HATE! And, IT department pricks, if you are reading this, fuck you, you website-blocking, adminstrator-authority-on-computer-taking, God-complex-having-assholes. Why the fuck should I have to change my log-on password once every month? How can I keep all those passwords stored? I have no functioning memory cells left you dicks. I HATE YOU!).

Obama Cartoons in arabic newspapers

Ta3beer has a collection of Obama cartoons from arabic newspapers. Some of them are negative:

 

Some are appallingly racist 

 

and some are positive and self-critical at the same time:

 

American Obama

–His father is an African migrant who abandoned him in his childhood.
–A minority lawyer who is active in human rights within the Democratic Party
–Was elected president of the United States of America!
Arab Obama
 
–No family whatsoever, vagabond
–A slave with a dark complexion and a foreign agenda
–He can't even dream of getting an Arab citizenship 

Check them all out here. 

The Tribune is almost dead!

So, with Newspapers really dying for reals, does that mean we actually have only blogs to trust as our source of news? Is that a good thing? You guys sure?

Here we go again

Another bullshit article , by another idiotic foriegn journalist (Today's dunce is called Joseph Mayton. Joseph, I would like you to meet everybody; everybody, I would like you to meet the new idiot in town.) about how the new generation of Muslim Brotherhood bloggers are going to provoke change inside the movement itself. This myth of reformist MB bloggers got started by our old friend Abdel Monem, and has gained traction amongst some very smart people, like Marc Lynch, despite its utter idiocy. (Now, for the interest of full disclosure, I would like to inform you guys of something I didn't share before: In retaliation to an interview that I made with the Brotherhood's second man, where he admitted that CAIR is the MB front in the US, Abdel Monem wrote a news piece on my US trip in the daily newspaper he works at, where he outed me by name. He stated my real name, and identified me as the author of this blog. Thankfully, nobody, or almost nobody, read that article, and I refsued to point it out back then in order to let it get buried.)

Now, the reason why this whole notion is idiotic, is really really simple, and I do hope that Mr. Lynch and his cohorts pay attention, because I won't say this twice. First of all, the MB blogger movemnet is a made-up movement, something I clearly explained in that post back when, so please re-read it so we can move on from that one. Secondly, even if they are honest to god refromers, those bloggers do not exist anywhere close to any decision-making power within the MB structure. Their job, in case you haven't noticed, is to say the words that make the hasmter hit the paddle: i.e. tell you what you want to hear so that you can feel better about yourself and your world. That the Muslim Brotherhood's goals are to live in a democratic society where everyone's rights are respected. Fine, ok, I will bite: As champions of democratic reforms, the MB must carry democratic elections to elect its supreme elader and his council, right? Wrong, you say? The supreme leader is chosen by a secret and shadowy council inside the MB organization itself? The Council itself gets chosen by the Supreme Leaders and the supreme leaders only? The younger generations never, not once, managed to get any of their people into the decision making cabal? So, how exactly is it their goal to exercise that which they themselves don't exercise? 

"But wait," the article says. "We know all of this, but surely, if the upcoming US admisntration started a dialogue with those young MB bloggers, a reconciliation process will start between the US and those islamist organizations. After all, those bloggers like American movies. One of them even says his favorite actor is Brad Pitt. Surely, we can use that to make inroads to create better relations with the US. You must agree with that, no?"

Ehh, who said you need those people to have a better relationship with the MB? You want a relationship with the MB, you just tell them you wnat to have a relationship with them, and they will form one with you. In case y'all haven't noticed,the MB organization, with all its branches, including Hamas, is  made up of a bunch of whores who are willing get in bed with anyone they could in order to gain more power and support. Hamas-The MB of Palestine- is in bed with the Syrians and the Iranians, despite the fact that those two regimes are opressing their local version of the MB, and its normal. The Egyptian MB is not really in opposition with the government. Hell, they would endorse Mubarak for Life tomorrow if he agreed to give them a lick of Power. They are not clean, and they are not above corruption, because they don't have principles. They will play ball with everyone who is willing to play ball with them. So please, new Obama admisntration, if you want to engage the Brotherhood, you can do that directly at any time, without the help of the MB "reformist bloggers". Just call in your nearest CAIR rep, and he will get the message through. Just do it quickly, because I am not sure how many more of those articles I can take.

Where do we go from here?

Watching the news channels in the US this morning, I am both amazed and amused by their inability to deal with the Obama win. It's like the old song lyrics go: "The Battle is done, and we kinda won, so we sound our victory cheer. Now tell me, where do we go from here?"

CNN is still a cornucopia of holograms and colors, with them still stressing over the number of senate and house seats whose ballots haven't been counted yet, and getting the right amount of popular votes for each candidate, because while it was important to let McCain know that he lost, it's even more important to twist the knife, because, otherwise, where is the fun in that?

MSNBC , on the other hand, has calmed down a little bit since yesterday cry-a-thon (seriously, news anchors were crying from Joy. So much for media unbiasedness), and are now getting down to the business of "Who will be in an Obama government", and arguing over every hypothetical appointee- even though Obama didn't choose anybody yet. Bush is so not mentioned anymore I think he should like bomb somebody, as if to remind the people that he is still around, and has 2 more month in office, during which he can still kind of do damage. Come on Bush, be a maverick: Bomb Vietnam or something. They will never see it coming!

A brief switch to the land of BET (that's Black Entertainment Television for you, whitey) has shown a a talk show where the host was asking a number of very well dressed Black folks what they should do to help the first black President, and one of them said that they now have to become more responsible, better husbands and wives, make sure that their kids stay in school and get an education,so that Obama can have- and I am not even kidding here- a "grassroots army of supporters" ready to come to his aid when he needs it. And that's when I switched the channel, because if you were waiting on a President from your same ethnicity to make sure your kids get an education, for no other reason than have them become soldiers for his cause, then, ehh, I don't even want you to vote. Nothing personal, You just don't sound all that well in the head to me.

And finally- and I have kept the best for last- Fox news. Oh Fox news. Watching Brit Hume yesterday referring to himself as a "Child of the civil rights movement" just made me fall off my bed and into the floor laughing my ass off. Way to Go Brother Brit. And then this morning they had Karl Rove over to explain to them what happened: The news anchor asked bewilderingly "we always thought the country was center right, is this no longer the case?", to which Karl assured him that it is the case, by stating that Obama's policies of "cutting taxes for 95% of the american population" and "not having the government in complete control of health care" are both right-wing positions, and that's what won him the election. So Obama is a right-winger now? And here I thought he was a socialist communist godless muslim. My bad. So, I guess, for all you right wing people out there, Hurray for us. One of us just became President. Let's break out the champagne.

As for Palin, my dear lovely Palin who I will miss so much (and yes, I still have a crush on her: A beauty queen who runs shit in her own state, likes having kids -i.e. screwing- and her hobbies include shooting wolves from Helicopters? I WANT THAT!! Any Junior Palin's out there? I am single, baby. Hit me up), there is nothing on her since she last appeared crying yesterday. Whether she is the future of the republican party, or the next White Oprah, we don't know, but I know that she shouldn't run in a national election again. As this father of a friend of mine said to me yesterday "Palin..good for erections..bad for elections". Wise words from a wise man, one that we all could learn from.

And last, I leave you with this average Obama Voter, who will most likely hate him once he actually has to govern the mess that is the USA today.

And if you are curious why she will hate him, just watch this video, and just wait for the day when Black voters will turn on Obama and say things like "well, you know, he is half-white!"

Until that day comes, my friends, smoke'em if you got'em.

The Palin Rape kit rumor is not true!

There has been a nasty rumor going on that during Palin's tenure as mayor of Wassila, female rape victims were required to pay for their own rape kits. It was supposed to be another example on how Palin was really a man and hated women and wanted them all to stay home barefoot and pregnant.

Imagine my surprise when you find out that this is not true.

In reality, and had any journalist in the MSM outlets bothered to do their job instead of working for the Obama campaign 24/7, there was a state law forbidding charging victims of rape for their rape kits since 2000. As for where it all came from, the chief of Police( chief of police, not Palin) in Wasilla wanted to have the Insurance companies(Insurance companies, not the victims) to pay for them, with the intention of billing it ultimately to the rapists eventually. However, there isn;t a single piece of record that shows that a single victim's insurance was ever billed for it. If this practice still seems creepy or exclusive to macho,
rough-and-tumble Alaska, well, it happens to be the practice in other
states, too, like North Carolina (until recently) and … Illinois.

And can you guess who co-sponsored that bill in Illinois?

Can you say Barack Obama?

Have a nice day! 

Michael Slackman needs to be fired

How this man gets hired by the NYT to write about this crap about the middle east, well, that's just beyond me!

Growing in numbers

According to the egyptian government, Egypt now has more than 160,000 blogs.

A
report issued by the Information and Decision Making Center at the
cabinet council stated that the number of Egyptian blogs has reached
160,000 by last April, which represents 30.7% of the Arab blogs and
2.0% of the blogs throughout the world. Egyptian bloggers are more than
162,000, mostly 20- 30 years old.

2% of the world's blogs. Not too chabby for starting off with 30 blogs 4 years ago. Not too chabby at all! :)

The Carrie Bradshaw effect on middle-east politics

Just read this!

Loving the Zeitoun Shooting cover-up

I am. I really really am. Here are so far the reasons provided by the police and the media on why this wasn't a secterian attack:

Justification #1: There are about 12 Coptic owned Jewelry stores in the area surrounding the targeted store. The fact that they targeted this one proves that this is personal and that it wasn't about religion.

Why this is bullshit: Well, they were only two shooters. It's not like they were a big group of pirates who were gonna go on a rape and pillage spree in the middle of the day. They went in, killed 4 people and got away. The fact that they opened fire the moment they stepped into the store kind of goes with the execution-style of such terrorist attacks, not a stick-up scenario. But what do I know? Oh, and by the way, his store is the biggest and most known one in the neighborhood, yet nobody stole anything.

Justification #2: The whole thing was a personal vendetta. The guy was from Upper Egypt, you know.

Why this is bullshit: First of all, almost all Copts are originally from Upper Egypt, so that means shit. Second of all, Vendetta's are very specific: they kill the target, and possibly his family, but never anyone from another family.That would just force a third family to enter into the Vendetta game, which would mean that the attacking family would have to worry about two attackers instead of one. Makes no sense.

Justification #3: This wasn't a religious attack, because there is someone who saw two people who fit the description standing on a street corner two hours after the incident, and one of the had a cross tattooed on his wrist.

Why this is Bullshit: The same witness testified that he noticed the tattoo (which is usually about an inch in size) from a distance. Why was he watching those two? Because apparently one of them was helping the other shoot up heroin in the middle of the day on the streets of Zeitoun. Seriously. The guy's testimony states that he saw two people who fit the description standing from a distance, one of them was shooting a needle into the other's arm, and he could see the cross on that guy's wrist. So Zeitoun now has Mid-day  execution style slaying and people shooting heroin in public. Zeitoun is now Detroit. I believe it. Don't you?

Oh, and by the way, the cute girl who left a comment in the comment section of my previous post about the missing 15 k of gold, well, none of the newspapers mentioned any of this. Which would mean that there is a cover-up in order to make the whole thing seem sectarian. But if that was the case, why is the police trying their hardest to come up with a non-sectarian reason or justification for the incident (see above reasons) if the intent was to paint this crime as a sectarian one? Oh, those sneaky bastards. They must've forced the newspapers to not mention the stolen jewelry in order to give it a sectarian vibe, and then spent days mentioning all possible ridiculous reasons why this couldn't be a sectarian incident in order to make people really believe that this was a sectarian incident. Those sneaky sneaky bastards. They probably killed him too. And the Jooz must've been in on it to stow sectarian strife in Egypt. We might as well go there, right? Since we are, after all, going with crazy theories to justify a rather simple case of hate crime to make it something else. Much easier that way than dealing with it, no?  

Whatever…

The line between politics and media blurrs

Chris Mathews wants to be a senator and Laura Bush is co-hosting the Today show. Seriously!

AlArabiya is not biased, at all!!

If anyone ever doubts their Pro-Sunni Anti-Iran bias, this is the headline of their piece covering the Arab Summit:

"The Damascus Arab Summit is the only Arab summit in History not to start with the recitation of Koranic Verses" 

Translation:

"See..the people supported by Shia Iran are heathens who don't even recite the Koran!" 

and the sub headline:

"In his speech, President Assad ignored completely the occupation of UAE's islands by Iran"

No comment!

Hulu is cool

Network television shows, online, legally, and for free, too bad it only works for US IP's. If you are a middle-east resident and want to use it though, then use a proxy, but get a fast connection to counteract the delay time.

Fox News is useless

They actually have a story about how the satellite phones on LOST are not real. Yes, let's ignore the strange Island, the time travel, the smoke monster, Jacob, the ghosts of dead people. Yeah, all that is fine, but not the cool-looking satellite phones. Those are just not real!

How the news sounds to me

This is brilliant!

Trying to stop the signal

The information Ministers of 22 arab nations have finally got together and took decisive action against..freedom of speech, the broadcasted by satellite kind. They even formed a…CHARTER! OOooohhhhhhhhh:

Arab governments adopted on Tuesday a satellite broadcasting charter
which will entrench state control over broadcasts and curtail political
expression.

The document, which echoes the language found in press laws used by
some Arab countries to prosecute journalists critical of their
governments, was endorsed at a meeting of Arab information ministers in
Cairo.

Analysts say the charter is the Arab governments' response to the
relative freedom enjoyed by Arab satellite broadcasters, many of which
are privately financed and which encourage open political discussion of
sensitive matters.

"This is clearly an effort to try to stem (the) influence from
satellite television on a political level," said Lawrence Pintak,
director of the Center for Electronic Journalism at the American
University in Cairo.

And they are banning, I don't know, everything…

The charter bans broadcasting material seen as undermining "social
peace, national unity, public order and general propriety" –
accusations which Arab governments often throw at their opponents.

Broadcasters can not criticise religions or defame political, national and religious leaders, it says.

"Freedom (of expression) is to be exercised with awareness and
responsibility to protect the supreme interests of the Arab states and
the Arab nation," one clause says.

If a broadcaster violates the charter, the host government could suspend or revoke its broadcasting licence, it said.

But don't fret, there are some good news:

But the charter does make one gesture toward public opinion, saying
that Arabs have a right to watch international sporting events in which
their national teams are competing, regardless of who owns the
broadcast rights.

Because really, who needs political debate, transparency, or freedom of speech and expression as long as you have Football Games? 

I LOVE IT!