Mar 31, 2007

AJ Forum: Keynote - Seymour Hersh

I missed most of the keynote speech but luckily there will be podcasts up soon and Ethan's posts. I caught up with some of the questions. One question was about the discrepancy in journalisms - what is or isn't reported and how - between the West and the East. Hersh answered in his usual frankness that this won't be bridged because people will always have their prejudices, discrimination will always be there, so you have to work with what you're given without expecting others to change their ways or accept yours.

Another question was about Hersh's usage of mostly American sources in his stories, and his answer was that it depends on the story, for example when writing on Abu Guraib he had to use American sources while for stories on Lebanon for example he uses sources from that part of the world. He also talked about his meetings with Hassan Nasrallah (four times), he found him to be intelligent and determined and he's surprised that the US administrations isn't willing to talk to him.

The final questions was asked by Ethan, he mentioned how bloggers in places like Egypt were doing a great job reporting on elections and issues of human rights and as a result facing persecution, shouldn't journalists be supporting the cause of such bloggers? Hersh's answer was straight, he said we journalists are bitchy and nasty to each other, let alone to bloggers. Simply he doesn't see that hapenning. He also talked about his excitement of what bloggers are doing and how technology is changing the media industry.


Ethan said...

Abdurahman, really great to see you in Doha. Will you please let me know when podcasts are up so I can link my posts to the podcasts?

Abdurahman said...

Thanks Ethan, it was a privilege to meet you in person, I'll let you know as soon as the podcasts are up. I'll hopefully have a post on Somalia up tomorrow, so far I've met a journalist friend from Mogadishu, I'm hoping to meet the head of the ICU - Sheikh Sharif - who is visiting Doha.