A producer from Press TV called me an hour ago.
The request: To be on their show (probably, Middle East Today, a one-hour talk show) Tuesday to talk about Nasrallah’s speech – the one he’ll give Monday in commemoration of the 61st anniversary of the theft and ethnic cleasning of 1948.
My question: Who else will be on the show? Who will be the other guest?
The producer: [She said some Dr. from NY]
I said: I don’t debate Zionists.
The producer: Oh, but he’s only a soft Zionist.
I said: Soft Zionist. Hard Zionist. I don’t debate them. I’ve told you this position before.
The producer: Okay.
So, why? Press TV wants to discuss issues. Its aim – as the producer of the show has told me – is to encourage understanding. The first time I was on their show and they had a Zionist – without telling – it was insulting. In the midst of the siege on Gaza, Press TV had invited this “soft Zionist” who denied any aspect of occupation or Israeli brutality on Gaza and rather kept repeating – like an insane parrot – the possibility that Gaza could become a “Singapore.” When I confronted the Producer after the show as to the logic for inviting such a guest, who could only lower the level of conversation and who definitely did not encourage understanding, the Producer told me that they have to present “objectivity.”
US networks don’t even attempt that facade. They invite a range of Zionists. Or they invite a range of pro-war hawks.
So why this attempt to even attempt “objectivity”?
Why not present a show that is real, authentic, that examines the heart of the issue, rather than presenting two talking heads who debate each other superficially?
I could debate that Zionist – soft or not – and win. But I do not want to support the facade any longer. I do not want to support having the issues presented it as if they were equal. “Let’s bring someone to speak on the Palestinian side, and someone to speak on the Israeli side.” Ugh! And, while we’re at it, let’s do the same facade when talking about every other issue: slavery, someone in support, someone against! All the worse when it is propagated by a tv station that claims to be pro-justice.
I played that game on US tv stations for some ten years. After 2003, I became just a punching bag on US network tv. One face among 4. Convincing no one. But allowing the network to claim “objectivity”