A Diamond’s Eye View of the World

a multi-faceted look at the middle east, and the middle west

media wars

Posted by adiamondinsunlight on May 13, 2008

Everyone is blogging about the Lebanese media and its coverage of the situation, our guest said yesterday evening.

Well, include me among the guilty 🙂 – I think that the media coverage itself – how each channel has been covering events here – has been fascinating. Plus really, what else are we doing? Most of my work is done on my computer, so I’m online constantly – and because I have a laptop, I can work in front of the television. I imagine that many bloggers here are in similar situations – so in a way the sudden flowering of media-related blog posts is merely making a virtue of necessity.

But media wars of various kinds have been going on for some time – and not only between the media outlets of sparring groups.

Earlier this spring, the Ouwet Front – a very pro-Lebanese Forces blog – announced that the website manager for the LF’s official site had again asked the blog to shut down. When the blog’s administrator refused, the LF’s website administrator told him that it was a “direct order” from LF boss Samir Geagea.

The two men continued exchanging heated emails, which you can read through the attached link above, but in the end they appear to have agreed to hold their noses and carry on, with the official site ignoring the blog and the blog continuing to link and refer to the official site as if nothing had happened.

I can’t stand Samir Geagea, and the LF’s political platform makes me ill, but I do check the Ouwet blog from time to time. I don’t agree with many of its writers’ and commentators’ conclusions, but I appreciate the effort they all seem to make to think through their positions intellectually, and to try to push the boundaries of their (what I consider rather narrow) understanding of who counts as Lebanese.

That’s the background. And at the beginning of last week, before all this started, I noticed that the LF had upped the ante. It is now advertising its website on billboards in Christian areas:

I don’t think that we’ve heard the last of Geagea in this crisis, either. So feel free to check out the “official” site. As the billboard says, “for the truth a website”. Imagine my eyes rolling.

While I have been writing this post, H came in and turned on the news. Nasser Qandil has been giving an unending press conference on Manar. He’s not saying anything new, and he’s certainly not saying anything particularly interesting, but his press conference is one of my top five for the crisis thus far. The power went out in his house just after he began, so the screen showed 30 seconds of black screen and the sounds of a beeping UPS until his generator kicked back in.

Ah, Beirut. This may be a coup, but even Hizbullah can’t order EDL around.


One Response to “media wars”

  1. Tantalus said

    I think the artwork on this billboard is saying something extremely important, albeit unintentional and subliminal:

    All political parties (in this case the LF) should be thrown in the sea. 🙂

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