Always in Our Minds....

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Why You Should Read Annahar And Not The Rest?

This is a true evidence of how press could be part of the "huge propaganda" used by different parties in Liban to mislead the people!

Three famous Lebanese newspaper discussed Patriarch Sfier's statement in thier print today; Annahar (most famous Lebanese newspaper, most objective), Assafir (pro-opposition), and Al-Mostaqbal (pro-government). Just check how each newspaper dealt with it:

Annahar:
وكان البطريرك صفير اكد انه لم يطرح مع البابا بينيديكتوس السادس عشر اسم رئيس الجمهورية المقبل ولا مواصفاته، مشدداً على "ان يكون الرئيس على مسافة واحدة من الجميع، نظيف الكف ومتجرداً". وفي موضوع النصاب قال: "ان الدستور واضح والنصاب يجب ان يكون ثلثي عدد النواب واذا لم يجمع المنتخب الثلثين فإنه ينتخب بالنصف زائد واحد". واعتبر ان "القول ان الانتخاب يصح حتى لو لم يتوافر الثلثان يناقض الدستور". وحذر في المقابل من مقاطعة الجلسة اذ "لا يمكن احداً ان يقاطع وطنه".

Translation:
In the matter of the quorum, Sfier said: "The constitution is clear that the quorum should be two thirds of the total MPs, and if the candidate doesn't have the two third, he is elected by the half + one". And he considered that "Saying that you can vote without the two third quorum is against the constitution", warning at the time from boycotting the session "No body can boycott his/her country"

Assafir:
وأكد صفير على وضوح النص الدستوري «اي ان النصاب يجب ان يكون ثلثي عدد النواب، وإذا اجتمع المجلس وتأمن نصاب الثلثين فبإمكانهم ان يباشروا الانتخاب، ربما يجمع المنتخب ثلثين، واذا لم يجمع فإنه ينتخب بالنصف زائدا واحدا. لكن ثمة من يقول إن الانتخاب يصح حتى لو لم يتوفر الثلثان وهذا قول يناقض الدستور».

Translation:
Sfier insisted that "The quorum is two third of the total MPs, and only then can the MPs vote, the candidate could have two thirds of the votes, and if not he/she is elected by the half + one. But somebody says that the voting is valid without the two thirds' quorum and that is against the constitution"

As you can clearly see, Assafir chose from Sfier's speech what suits its agenda, and didn't mentioned what Sfier insisted on about the necessity for ALL MPs to attend the session, for no one should boycott his/her country!

Al-Mostaqbal:
وجدد صفير القول ان الاستحقاق الرئاسي "يجب ان يتم في موعده والناس لا يقاطعون الوطن انما يقاطعون هذا او ذاك من الفئات"، مشددا على وجوب "ان يتغلب الحسّ الوطني على ما عداه من مشاعر انسانية (..)".

Translation:
Sfier insisted that "The presidential elections should take place on its time, and people can boycott other people, but never their country", insisting on the need that "the patriotic feelings overcome other narrow-minded ones"

Of course, Al-Mostaqbal fails to mention that Sfier's opinion about the quorum is that is the Two thirds, not half + one!


As we can all see, it is important to realize that you can't just read any newspaper, as you can't just watch any TV station. We should realize that when it comes to news, media should be neutral and professional, delivering the WHOLE message and NOT just the part it likes. But most importantly, we as readers and viewers should be aware of such "propagandas", and know which newspaper to read, and which newspaper to boycott....

7 comments:

Riemer Brouwer said...

Interesting post and I couldn't agree more. Your comment to be selective about reading newspapers could also easily apply to blogs, btw:-)

Regarding Annahar, would you really describe them as neutral? Granted, I can only read the naharnet.com site since I don't read Arabic, but that website is anything but neutral. Perhaps it's the 'most neutral' among its peers. That alone is a sad indication of the sorry state of journalism in Lebanon

JoseyWales said...

-Even naharnet is different from the AnNahar, shoddy work from Arab press, though maybe Nahar is a shade better.

-Sfeir is wrong politically and legally on this issue of 2/3. Plus his daily statements are a big nothing: let's all kiss and make up, please all agree to save Leb etc...

How does he think we got here?

ali said...

Annahar is as neutral, as FOX News in Fair and Balanced..

FaiLaSooF said...

riemer brouwer, joseywales,
There is a HUGE diffeence between annahar newspaper and naharnet, just like joseywales stated.

Regarding neutrality, who said that Annahar is neutral? Of course it is NOT.

But this is NOT the point here. You see guys, Annahar cares enough to be objective, and publish both sides of the story, and the whole statement of persons. NOT just the part that suits its agenda.

But you are right, annahar (through its posts and articles) does post its point of view, but it remains an independent-propaganda-free newspaper, which can't be said about assafir nor al-mostaqbal.

I'm NOT asking newspapers to be neutral, they should reflect different points of view, but at the same time there should be a fair exposure to the whole aspects of the news, NOT just the part that seems to fit within one's interests. And that's explains why it is a good idea to actually read different newspaper to get an idea about different point of view.

Ali,
when you have an argument, feel free to mention it. But don't just throw words and judgments without proof man, it just NOT right....

ali said...

So failasoof-you take one story and show how three different newspapers cover it, and that is enough for you to judge that one newspaper is objective and the others are not?

Is it coincidental that the newspaper you deem objective is the one you agree with?

You yourself state that Annahar is not neutral. Partisanship and objectivity cannot possess the same body. Your partisanship will color both your presentation and content, regardless of how well-intentioned you are. From the choice of headlines, to photos, to the news that is presented on the first page rather than page 17, to the news that does not get covered, to the use of quotation marks for certain terms, to the set-up of the story, all continue to show that no news is ultimately objective.

You will have to prove your point when you can show examples of how Annahar covers events and persons from various political camps over a period of time for your argument to have any credence.

In a highly emotional, sectarian and partisan setting such as Lebanon, the “truth” is really bits and pieces you will have to gather yourself from the various players and sources, and hope finally that your own emotions and ideology do not further filter and color your perception. I will continue to read newspapers and blogs from various view points (though I will except al-mustaqbal here). To think that Annahar is the Gospel and your window to an “independent, propaganda-free” reality is to sorely shortchange yourself.

FaiLaSooF said...

Ali,
You can check the newspapers tomorrow, and you will come to the same conclusion!

Through out Liban's history, Annahar was and is still the most objective source for news and information in the country. Simply because, while pointing out its own perspective, it is still capable of covering the story from different point of views.

Check the list of writers and columnists writing at Annahar, and you will see that they are of different backgrounds and political affiliations, and this is why this newspaper was able to maintain a certain amount of "objectiveness" compared to other local ones.

But again Ali, this is wasn't the reason of the original post! All what I am trying to say is that the media in Liban should respect true journalism and give a chance to proper news broadcasting, while at the same time showing their own unique point of view regarding different issues. You can't argue that among the newspapers listed above, Annahar has the most objective cover, and as it was mentioned earlier, you can check them out day by day, and you will come to this conclusion.

If you are a keen reader of my blog, you would see that I pinpoint mistakes wherever I find them, and I praise good steps wherever I found them too. For I believe that this is our obligation to the country. So me saying that Annahar is the most objective newspaper has nothing to do with whether I agree with it is political point of view or not, for this is NOT the standard of measurement adopted in this post.

Lira = 1500 said...

Annahar has been using its fair share of "masader mawsouka" and "masader mouttali3a" when referring to highly dangerous stories like weaponry and training of civilians. That alone should raise an eyebrow if not many.