July 15, 2008

Arab Media Blind to Darfur

[Warning: Clicking on the link will take you to al-Jazeera's website. Be warned.] From Arab Media Blind to Darfur:

More than 200,000 people have died in the conflict in Darfur, with millions more turned into refugees, but for many in the Arab world, the humanitarian catastrophe may as well not exist.

Lawrence Pintak, a journalist and Arab media expert, says the problem with Darfur is that it does not fit the template of Arabs being the victims and other people the aggressors. Thus, the Arab media have largely ignored it.

"I think we are in a state of denial," says Jehad Khazen, a former editor of al-Hayat newspaper.

"People say 'the Arabs or Muslims - cannot do this - it did not happen' - but they did do this and it did happen - and they have to reconcile themselves to the fact."