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February 10, 2005



Is it possible that when people like Ross criticize Al Jazeera, they're talking about the news coverage rather than the talk shows?

Re, Qardawi, did you catch this comment of his?


the aardvark

On news vs talk shows: often, yes. In this case, though, Ross was specifically talking about talk shows in that paragraph.

On Mahmood: I think Mahmood quotes Qaradawi out of context pretty badly. If I have time later, I'll translate the show - which was mainly about how freedom must come first for any other political reforms or even any resistance to the enemy to be possible. Qaradawi describes Saddam (and lots of other Arab rulers) as a tyrant, a butcher, and lots of other bad names over the course of the show.


I don't think he's as clear there as he could be, but I see what you mean now.

I have, btw, seen Hafiz al-Mirazi dance around the proposition that Bin Laden's views are, in fact, legitimate, and deserve to be aired opposite those of Bush. I think that's worth worrying about, no?

Nell Lancaster

Would it blow your cover to say a little bit about the book just finished? If so, ignore. If not: dish!

the aardvark

All will become clear soon. How soon is largely in the hands of the book production team.

Til then, can I tantalize you with "The Aardvark Unmonitored: The Dashing Derring-Do of an Unaccountable Ungulate"? (see comment thread below for the reference)

Andrew Reeves

On the subject of watching and knowing Al Jazerra for onesself--how long does it take to pick up a decent level of fluency in MSA if you're doing it in a non-intensive manner?

the aardvark

Andrew: it really depends on how you are with languages, and how much time you can spend on it. My experience was that while I was taking language classes in grad school my progress was frustratingly slow, whereas when I was over in the ME my Arabic improved quickly and dramatically. At some point after about four years of that, it was like something clicked in my head. If I had been able to just spend all my time learning the language and living in the region, as opposed to doing it part time along with studying political science, it probably would have been a lot faster.


Once I learn how to say ayn and ghayn properly I'm going to be all set ...

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