: Q: Why do you blog?
Der Schockwellenreiter: Because I live.
You want to talk media bias?
: Dateline: Baghdad:
The director-general of the controversial Arab satellite television, Al Jazeera, has been sacked, a spokesman for the channel has confirmed.
His dismissal follows allegations he worked with Saddam Hussein’s intelligence services.
I won’t respond to Pedram’s response; it’s late and after a heated charity trustees meeting, my brain is done to a crisp.
But I will make one important point and note it well:
Here is a discussion about the hottest hotbed of issues on earth: the Middle East. It comes from an Iranian and an American — two peoples who have not, let’s be honest, trusted each other for decades. The discussion is passionate and pointed and honest.
Yet the discussion is also almost entirely respectful and civilized.
That beats what you’d hear on the street here or there, or on editorial pages across the world, or in the seats of power, or in the U.N. And — pardon me for turning this into another damned self-referential blog about blogging — but I think this is to the credit of weblogs as an medium. Weblogs are interactive — moreso by far than print or broadcast — but in a more civilized way than, say, forums and that’s because we all own and care for our little corners of this world. I have my little plot of media land and I ask you to respect it as you ask me to respect yours. And so what could turn into a flame war — or, in the real world, a real war — instead becomes an effort to find some understanding or at least education.
No, weblogs are not going to bring us world peace and harmony. You can put away your tapes of It’s a Small, Small World and the Coke song.
But weblogs across the world can create bridges and in this world, that’s something.
And that — to continue my neverending plug — is why I want to see weblogs in Iraq, so they, too, can build bridges.
A happy ending
: Will at A Minute Longer reports from a mission to pick up truckloads of mail for our soldiers in Doha. The story has two happy endings — first, getting past a bureacratic lieutenant and then:
The happy ending came on the drive home. Matt was riding shotgun, and a civilian SUV pulls up alongside us with a female driver and 5 girls, the oldest one around 12 and the youngest maybe 6. Matt is an incorrigible flirt, and those little girls didn
Women in Iran
: Steppenwolf, an Iranian blogger, gives just three examples of the issues facing women in Iran today.
: Meanwhile, in Pakistan, the Times of London reports:
RELIGIOUS police in part of Pakistan have been granted authority to enforce harsh Islamic laws that have been modelled on those imposed by the Taleban in Afghanistan.
Since a United States-led coalition toppled the Taleban regime, thousands of Islamic fundamentalists have crossed the Afghan border to find refuge in North West Frontier Province in Pakistan.The area, which is under the control of the Islamic alliance, has now begun to look more like Afghanistan under the Taleban than a part of Pakistan.