On Egypt and news media

I watch some foreign TV news stations, and am increasingly appalled by how conceited some people/nationalities are. The Egyptian crisis is about Egypt and at most other Arab countries, not about any Western country. We're pretty unimportant bystanders, all of us Westerners.

The most ridiculous thing I heard was the assertion that Egyptians are waiting for "leadership" by a certain Western country. Seriously, they probably waited for leadership by El Baradei, but certainly not by some distant and not exactly decisively influential country! It might be news to some, but that country ain't the only democracy, and Egypt and the Arab world are quite likely to watch to European countries like France or the UK for examples of democracy. Both have a long track record of developing and living in democracy (even though they call it constitutional monarchy and republic) and both have historical ties with the Arab world.

Almost as appalling is the behaviour of some Westerners who treat the Egyptian crisis selfishly as an event which will affect primarily us. To overthrow Mubarak is in their opinion a bad thing if that means the slightest disadvantage or even only uncertainty to us. Despicable pundits, fear-mongers.

Finally the third appalling thing about "news" about Egypt; the assertion that the revolution in Egypt is going towards an Iranian model (and will probably breed terror against us, although that is not exactly how the Iranian revolution played out).
It's in theory an acceptable idea, but the facts (as publicly known) simply point at an entirely different direction and it's simply appalling that people earn money by spouting such horror scenarios on global TV.

The Muslim Brotherhood was not involved in the early protests overtly - the beginning of the protest  movement was the achievement of the hopeless youth of Egypt. The Muslim Brotherhood is not a terrorist organisation. It is not connected to AQ in Egypt. It does not endorse violence. It did even join the protests against the anti-Christian violence a few weeks ago. It's the Egyptian version of a conservative party. Guess what? German conservatives call their parties "Christian [...]" and still aren't the Spanish inquisition.
Nevertheless, some pundits are moronic enough to just read "Muslim" and think "AQ-like". Yes, the state of some mass media outlets is that sad. It's even worse, for I watched an international TV news station which has a better reputation for its programming than its national brethren.



  1. Very good aggregation and interpretation.

  2. Its not like its magic or rocket science really. Ask x amount of people for their first, instinctive thought about the word "muslim" in any Western country in Europe or America. Nine out of ten times the honest answer will be pretty clear (even though the "On second thought..."-aspect will be relevant in a number of cases).

    Mass media plays first and foremost towards primary instincts, not deeper thoughts and media companies consist of the same populations, its not like they have their own elitist pool for employment, thus reinforcing that issue.

    Furthermore analysis is certainly not their prerogative anyway. Mass media is - in my opinion - the fast food sector of the information industry. Research and analytical skills are completely absent from that business nowadays (the copy-paste syndrom). Every time I end up on Spiegel online, Zeit, Welt, SZ or the like, to get a basic notion of whats going on "back home", I have to leave within ten minutes, so as not to puke all over the screen. They are really that bad.

  3. I actually respect FTD.de (it's the only newspaper that produces worthwhile articles on macroeconomic topics).

  4. Yes, I have been intensely embarrased by the mass medias peurile reaction to this revolution. Selfish, unknowledgeable, fearfull, and over reactive.