Sunday, September 09, 2012

The "Angry" Arab

I read this and shook my head in despair. As'ad Abu Khalil, who is only really "angry" if Arabs are being killed by some countries and not others, refers sarcastically to the "Syrian Revolution". He's even got a name now for people who don't want Assad to rule the country anymore, "groupies". Can this man get any sillier?

But what is amusing is this: groupies of the "Syrian revolution" used to promote the articles by Fisk early in the uprising when they were very critical of the regime, and have in recent months declared him an official shabbih once his articles became sympathetic to the regime.  Consistency, Mr. Watson. Consistency
 Speaking of consistency, contrast his criticism of events in Bahrain with events in Syria, or compare his coverage of his posts last year for the revolution in Egypt with the start of the revolution in Syria. But who can blame him, it took him almost a year to put "Syrian Revolution" in quotation marks at least. Last year the best he could do was choose not to believe anything he heard about events in Syria.

Have you noticed another thing about the "Angry" Arab's coverage of events in Syria? He always qualifies his coverage of Syria with the mildest of chastisements to the Syrian regime before going out of his way to portray the Syrian revolution as a Salafist, Wahabi conspiracy, conveniently because his understanding of the Syrian revolution is limited to the Syrian National Council, the most extreme and insane fringe elements of the armed opposition to the regime, and the lunatic rants of Mamoun al Homsi.

Only recently the one year anniversary of the death of Ghiath Matar, murdered by the security services, was commemorated. But of course As'ad Abu Khalil has probably never heard of him, or if he has he conveniently ignores him, because people like Ghiath don't fit in with what the Angry Arab wants the Syrian revolution to be.

10 comments:

amjadofarabia said...

Ass'ad Abu Khalil whining about other people's "inconsistency" is a bit like Donald Trump accusing Don King of being a "shameless self promoter".

Abu Khalil is a self styled Marxist who fled to the capitalist USA in 1983 and has stayed there ever since. We haven't heard a peep out of this man on the killings in the Yarmouk refuge camp. He frequently demands that Western reporters divulge the names and identities of their Syrian sources, all the while quoting some random "Akram" in Damascus whose reporting just happen to conveniently confirm Abu Khalil's manic outlook on the world.

And of course it is legitimate to criticize Robert Fisk for his most recent articles. Unlike Abu Khalil, normal people are not in the habit of damning someone for something they have not done yet. If a reporter's professionalism falls, then it is perfectly legitimate to call him out on it, regardless of his previous contributions.

Anonymous said...

Maysaloon, if you were my FB friend (and ahlan wa sahlan), you would have seen me periodically expressing rage over the Angry Arab's views. He actually was a friend of mine, I met him in 2000 in Berkeley. He had just given a lecture to an audience of only 3 people (me, Fay Kanafani & one other) on the Ba`th. He has a large following on his blog and every time we try to have a discussion on certain e-lists (large ones) on Syria, there he is again, name-calling and denying. The problem - he is NOT the only one - his friends at al-Jadaliyya, al-Akhbar & in academia are carrying the torch for the old Arab left and sold out along the way, to this regime, and to a fantasy in which they can defeat the Islamist sentiments of the masses - which they claim to be inspired by Saudi Arabia, etc. Sherifa Zuhur

Crazy Bear said...
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Maysaloon said...

@Crazybear - thank you, it took you five minutes to find an irrelevant quote about what somebody told him and you parade it here like it means something. It's all well good for people to read your comments and think they are reasonable - until they actually go to his blog and see how he behaves towards Syria compared to what is really happening.

His posts about Bahrain are far less critical and there is arguably even less ability to verify what is happening there than in Syria owing to its being ignored by the Western media.

If it was Gaza that was facing the same tragedy that Syria is, he would be far "angrier" and less concerned with the source of grainy mobile phone footage, regardless of the equal incompetence of Hamas and Fatah. So please spare us the pedantic experience of cherry picking his blog posts.

Crazy Bear said...
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Maysaloon said...

@Crazybear

I wish you read my post as thoroughly as you've compiled those statistics on Abu Khalil's blog. If you did you would have realised that my criticism of the Angry Arab is that he treats the Syrian revolution as a duality of the regime on one side and the FSA and SNC on the other, when in fact there is now and has always been a legitimate revolution with its own symbols and heroes.

Secondly the contrast between his treatment of the Bahraini revolution and the Syrian one is not about whether or not he criticized the Bahraini revolution, but that he refers to it as such without the use of sarcastic quotation marks. He also references events there onto his blog without the same level of sarcasm and haughtiness.

There is a qualitative difference in the Angry Arab's posts on Syria and its contrasts with the Bahraini one that is deliberate. The central part of my constant criticisms of the man are based on my deduction that this revolution, in spite of his claims to the contrary, is not something he wanted, and he has gone out of his way to first ignore it by feigning ignorance, and now dismiss and ridicule it.

You ignore these things as you do many other things about his coverage, and consistently try to shift the discussion away from what I have written about.

This might be because you just don't read my posts properly or, and this is what I suspect, you don't want to engage with what is being said, and shift the discussion off to amateur statistics that prove an irrelevant point for an artificial argument.

Crazy Bear said...
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amjadofarabia said...

Angry Arab has to whine even if it means manufacturing a grievance. How many times has he belittled the Syrian's revolution's chants, calling them uncreative? And yet lo and behold, today Palestinians demonstrating against their government borrowed the same chants.

(Actually, in Yemen and Kuwait they also emulated the chants first created in Syria).

As for Angry Arab's ridiculous "Lebanese civil war sixth sense", this is the same man who claimed that, due to his magnificent sixth sense, he could tell that Syrian protest banners in English were actually taken of armed men being trained in Maryland. It says alot about the sorry state of his readership that they continue to give credence to someone so has repeatedly proven so uncredible.

Crazy Bear said...
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AEB said...

You do realize it's the regime loyalists that copied the chants of protesting Syrians, and not vice versa, right?