"Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons." Bertrand Russell

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Foreign Chavs not toeing line? (again)

Update: Jon's minimalist reply:

good to hear from you again david..helpful stuff..we'll use when next with chavez in a month or tow..sorry in haste en route iraq..best, jon snow

New Media Lens alert, analyses typical fare from the liberal media when it comes to 'leftist' leaders, Channel 4 does a hatchetjob on Hugo Chavez (followed by my two cents):

On March 27, Channel 4 News included a report by Washington Correspondent Jonathan Rugman: 'Hugo to go?' (http://www.channel4.com/news)

Rugman relentlessly smeared Venezuelan president, Hugo Chávez, in a piece described by John Pilger as "one of the worst, most distorted pieces of journalism I have ever seen". (Email to Channel 4 News, copied to Media Lens, March 27, 2006)

Channel 4 news presenter Jon Snow introduced the film:

"Now, he's the president with his own television show and a stream of semi-humorous invective hurled at America and George Bush. Venezuela's president, Hugo Chávez, accuses the US of planning to invade his country to take control of its vast oil reserves. And last night he invoked the ultimate deterrent - the bow and arrow dipped in Indian poison. 'If we have to put a few arrows into the invading gringo, then you'll be done in thirty seconds.'"

Continued... Media Lens

Jon and Jonathan,

It is well over a year since I have emailed you in response to, what you must consider, those pesky Media Lens Alerts, but I felt compelled to ask why Channel 4 News insists on portraying the repeatedly democratically elected South American leader Hugo Chavez as some sort of monster in the ilk of Saddam Hussein.

It's not that I don't understand the parallels you draw, he is surely a man that defies US influence and even courts controversy by offering cheap oil to poor Americans. He has met and dealt with 'unpopular' characters such as Fidel Castro, Saddam Hussein and Colonel Gadaffi. But he is not alone in this respect, your friends in government and their allies have met and in fact supported a few despots in their time. A few weapons sales here, some genocide swept under the carpet there and a little sanctuary once the courts of justice come looking. Even with that infamous picture of Mr. Rumsfeld meeting with Saddam doing the rounds on the internet, I have yet to hear an ominous voice over suggesting our dear Rummie is in danger of joining a "rogue's gallery of dictators and despots."

Why do you not draw the same parallels with our own leaders? While Chavez makes deals with communists and other 'suspicious' politicos, your own leader and the head of that other "personality cult," the eerily dubbed neo-conservatives, are busy commanding invading armies. Instead, our leaders are kindly "securing energy [as] a key foreign policy goal."

Apparently, Americans are increasingly looking towards the British media for an unbiased view of their efforts in "securing energy," it would really be swell if Channel 4 could be fair in their criticism of leaders who are "undoubtedly popular at home...spending billions on health and education programmes to improve the lives of the country's poor," while at the same time finding the same time to analyse the motives behind leaders who consistently defy public opinion in their quest to secure energy.

Yours sincerely,