Friday, October 29, 2010

Al Jazeera analyzes the Wikileaks files

Okay, this is just under an hour long. Hardly the sort of thing you click on as part of your morning web routine. But it's a very good analysis of the leaked files, covering a great number of topics. I had a few quibbles over questions I wish they had asked or points I wish they had insisted on forcing someone to clarify, but this is, overall, an excellent job, both of taking apart the actual information and of putting into context.

A  source or two are partisan, but you need that perspective. The interviewer doesn't call names, but he certainly lets those couple of people hang themselves. (Notably the fellow who thinks the Americans are supporting Iran's interference. The interviewer doesn't press him to prove it, but, then, why should he? The statement speaks for itself, and adds critical context to his other remarks.) And I don't follow the Wikileaks founder down the line, but he makes some good points.

The section on Blackwater is absolutely appalling, as one would expect, but much of the rest is sad and tragic and often infuriating, yet couched in the context of a sad, tragic and infuriating war where, indeed, sh*t happens.

Not that you aren't permitted to break out a shovel when it does.

So here it is, and I think it matters. When you find that the alternative is "Dancing with the Stars" or something about real housewives, pretend it's just a TV show rather than something on the computer and give it a watch. (You will want to click on it to go to YouTube and then make it full screen.)

It's an hour well-spent.
UPDATE: Al Jazeera has lost its press privileges in Morocco and its Rabat bureau has been shut down. From the story:
"It's a very surprising decision from the government, especially because there was no legal background. It's just a very administrative and political decision," Vincent Brossel of Reporters without Borders told Al Jazeera from Paris.
He said that RSF "suspect that this decision is linked to the way your channel has been covering different issues, especially the Western Sahara, and I think it's mainly because you open your microphone to all sides, and not only the government's side".

No comments: