Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Haykal's Monolgogues- Boring and Wrong

I am not one of those who listen to Mohamed Hasanyn Haykal's monologues on al Jazeera as if it is revealed truth of the sage of sages. I tried to listen for more than ten painful minutes and failed miserably. My graduate education had me sit through many many lectures- some quite boring. Haykal gets the cake with his boring run on sentences and monotnous monologues.

The man, however, is considered one of the best analysts in the Middle East. This is understandable if his competition is the Baath and Thawra newspapers- papers that are only good to wrap street vendors goods.

I think this reputation is a legacy of the dismal history of Arab media. However, the internet and satellite tv changed the rules of the game creating what one scholar called Arab Public Space. The quantity and quality available now makes Haykal's analysis pale in comparison.

The worst analysis he provided- according to Hassan Sabra of Lebanese weekly Al Shiraa- is on the May 2008 conflict in Lebanon. It's amazing how much Haykal does not know and his bigoted and ignorant view of MP Walid Jumblatt. He had the gall, without citing any logic or sense, to defend the Hizbullah attack on the defenseless Beirutis and the Druze of theMountain.

http://www.alshiraa.com/alshiraa/details.asp?iss=1346&cat=2&art=1&id=13862.

One conclusion from reading Sabra's column is Haykal is another reason to ditch al Jazeera for the Al Arabiya TV.

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