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June 23, 2005

Comments

Charlie

I defer only in the absence of convincing evidence to the contrary - do you know if, in general, the Arab communities al-Jazeerah serve know about Durbin's comments and/or apology? There is more than one definition of "broadcast" even here in America.

collounsbury

Well, I see this is the same as on my fine little journal.

My response is certainly some know now, but quite seriously this was something of largely US domestic interest and howling on about it about domestic politics. Navel gazing if you will. (Or in other words, comments by obscure domestic legislators are not of great interest to non-Americans per se, the same being true in the inverse of course)

I don't know that anyone here is particularly moved by this issue at the moment, versus the larger perception that the US is indeed engaging in serious abuses. That perception has little to do with Durbin or US media, much to do with ex-US reporting.

There you go. Rove was making domestic political hay, as is his right of course. I suspect facts have little relevancy here.

Charlie

If "some know now" it was somehow "broadcast" correct?

collounsbury

Well, the domestic US political spat has hit some of the media here.

It may very well have been initially broadcast, but if so I missed it and it hardly attracted interest. Obscure foreign politicians and the like.

I frankly don't really care to prove anything wrong or right here, I merely am reporting that as a regular broadcast consumer of the two channels (of the ordinary sort, not an obsessive politico), I did not note it.

So there you go. The bleating on now about the issue is likely attracting more attention (good, bad, whatever) than the original.

Regardless, as a regular Arab Sat consumer, I find the bizarro world distortion in the US of the ArabSats' politics far more problematic than some ninny comment by some center-left politico or the like.

However, domestic politics follows its own logic.

the aardvark

Collounsbury raises an important point - there's a good chance that al-Jazeera and company will run something on the controversy surrounding his remarks (as they did in the June 16 story I mentioned), even if the original remarks were ignored.

Also, the ArabSats do report on Guantanamo abuses when newsworthy things happen - I did catch a snippet of a piece this morning about criticisms made by international human rights groups, and footage of Bill Clinton speaking, pegged around claims by an AJ (employee? stringer?) that he was abused there. It's the real abuses that I've seen them report, not this particular flap over Durbin.

the aardvark

I just ran a FBIS search (Foreign Broadcast Information Service - which monitors and translates foreign broadcasts for the American government). "Durbin" in the year 2005 for reports coming from Doha (where al-Jazeera broadcasts) turns up zero hits. "Guantanamo" turns up 17 hits, none of which mention the remarks of the Senator from Illinois.

the aardvark

One last update: the AJ news broadcast did just run a short segment on Guantanamo, pegged (as I mentioned above) to international human rights groups criticisms. It didn't mention Durbin.

collounsbury

On the Father of Aardvarks comments, what American readers,commentators etc. have to understand is that regardless of the content, whether you're for or against, quite frankly Durbin's comments were fairly small beer to an overseas audience.

An obscure American legislator making comments not particularly shocking or interesting to overseas viewers.

Rather, a bit of navel gazing all around then.

MattR

Charlie - Yes the information about Senator Durbin's speech may have been broadcast (in some meaning of the word) through the Arab world. But Karl Rove said "Al Jazeera now broadcasts the words of Senator Durbin to the Mideast". There is a world of difference between the two and you know it.

Charlie

Not if he meant that Durbin's comments (and note the apology will not get as much air time) may have been broadcast in whatever meaning of the word through the Mideast. Maybe I'm missing something?

collounsbury

ACtually mate, the apology probably has gotten as much airtime. But that's not the bloody point. The bloody point mate is that all this is meaningful, well to you (American domestic public) and not really over here (except as some vaguely entertaining political theatre from those queer Americans).

It's bloody navel gazing.

One can "worry" about Durbin's comments or congratulate oneself about the apology, but don't bloody fool yourself, it's domestic politics and not in anyway meaningful in terms of having been broadcast, or not.

Ronald Rutherford

I messed up on the original links:
I want to make one point only at this time and not discuss which is worse Durbin or Rove's comments.
But there is one factual point which is incorrect at:Al-Jazeera Broadcasts Durbins Words...
And be sure to check comments here:Fact Checking Karl
And his "more despicable lie" is correct at:Lies...Not
US senator regrets Nazi remark
Wednesday 22 June 2005, 19:44 Makka Time, 16:44 GMT
"US Senator Dick Durbin has apologised for comparing American interrogators at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp to Nazis and other historically infamous figures."
I did read the original June 16 about his remarks and his refusal to apologize but could not bring it up today. I also remember the link from above as of yesterday.
But keep up the good work!
After I appologize for this with tears in my eyes, I will be back.
Be sure to check out AlsoAlso.

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