Saturday 19 July 2014

More debate on 'Dateline'

For the second week running Dateline London broke from its left-liberal consensual stupor and gave us a proper debate, complete with lively disagreements. 

If this continues we'll have to call it 'The Dateline Spring'.

The Russian guest, Voice of Russia's Dmitry Linnik, put the Putin line of defence in the wake of the horrific shooting down of a Malaysian airliner over Ukraine. It didn't convince me, and it certainly didn't convince any of the other guests either. A very lively argument with Janet Daley and Saul Zadka ensued which opened up a wide range of perspectives on the geo-politics of this appalling story...which is just the sort of thing Dateline should be doing every week.

Similarly, the discussion over the Gaza conflict was a genuine debate, with multiple perspectives. 

As with last week's edition, a pro-Palestinian guest (Mina al-Oraibi of the pro-Saudi Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper) was pitted against two pro-Israeli guests (Janet Daley and Saul Zadka), and things took a passionate turn. (Mr Linnik added an extra anti-Israel voice to this discussion, but was really using the occasion to defend Russia and to score points against the Ukrainian government by comparing it to the Israeli government.)

Saul Zadka said he wouldn't be surprised if people (like the Turkish prime minister) started blaming the Israeli government for shooting down the Malaysian airliner as a diversionary tactic. Oddly, both Sue and myself have already seen such mad conspiracy theories floating about.

Update (18:23): And talking of boneheads and conspiracy theories. It ain't just the Malaysian airliner. If you were wondering why the BBC iPlayer has been down today, well, allow some complete nutter on Twitter to explain:

1 comment:

  1. I agree. Good, bristly programme. Saul's comment did of course have a grain of truth - the Turkish PM probably WOULD be tempted down that route. But conspiracies and (now breaking from the Kremlin) false flags aside, I'd say Thursday was much more like "It's now a very good day to get out anything we want to bury", though of course the outlook for anyone who might suggest such a thing would probably as bleak as it was for that adviser to Steven Byers thirteen years ago.
    By any standards, Tel Aviv did not get stuck in the starting-blocks when the cameras swivelled to focus on Donetsk.


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