Insomnia (insomnia) wrote,

Don't ban Al Jazeera -- ban the Iraqi government.

Al Jazeera has their rights to report in Iraq restricted again, but this time for an even more inane reason than before...

In this case, Al Jazeera was having a television call-in program and a person called in and said a few disrespectful things regarding the family members of people on the Iraqi Council.

As a means of comparison, it's almost as if CNN were banned from entering any government office in Washington D.C. or attending any press conference because a dial-in caller said that Bush's grandfather was a Nazi lover and his brother helps rig elections. Hell, it's not even that extreme. Why should Al Jazeera be responsible for the brief comments of a single caller? Big networks like CNN have gotten live calls from Howard Stern fans making crank calls, for god's sake. People will call in and act reputable, but once they're live on the air, they can say most anything unless bleeped or cut off the air. That's why they call it "Talk Back Live"... n'est ce pas?!

To the Iraqi National Congress, all I can say is "Nice democracy you're building there, pinheads..." You'd think Bremer would argue against censorship, but... no. Not a peep.

If the rest of the world's media had any balls, they would make a real issue out of the threatening, censoring environment they are being forced to work under in Iraq, but they don't want to get kicked out of Baghdad's endless stream of government briefings and press conferences either. They'd rather be safely cloistered in highly security, air-conditioned government offices, moving in packs and getting the word on the land straight from the camel's behind rather than risk going out in public, taking a few risks, and inspecting the teeth. Such brave journalists!

Really, at this point the Iraqi Council might as well jump to the logical extreme, ban all satellite dishes by threat of death, and force people a constant diet of government-run propaganda. Hey, it helped Saddam keep the Iraqis in the dark for decades... why wouldn't it work now?!

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