APPEASE, SIR ROBERT

Geoffrey Wheatcroft notes a suggested alternative to the knighting of Salman Rushdie:

When Lord Ahmed was made a member of the House of Lords by Blair, he was paraded as a moderate Muslim voice. He sounded only fairly moderate when he said on television that “Sir Salman” was an outrage against Islam and that the government should have knighted journalist Robert Fisk instead.

He’d have been the first to win a knighthood for services to himself. Here’s Sir Robert on the death of Kurt Waldheim, in which the Nazi-linked former UN Secretary-General receives only passing mention:

All I could say … I heard yesterday … I spent months, years, investigating … I remember … I was at Amman airport … I thought …

It was an Austrian journalist who alerted me … when I told her … I recall finding … I remember how I visited Bosnia … I visited his former headquarters … I even visited his interrogation office …

I asked him what it felt like … I have his words in my own handwriting as I write this … When I left Bosnia … my Waldheim investigations … I called my foreign news editor … I saw so many parallels …

I believed a civil war would break out … The local Serbs even abused meI did report the Bosnian war …

I well remember … I came across a second-hand copy of Waldheim’s memoirs … I should add …

All history revolves around Bob. This piece also sees the return of Fisk’s roarers:

“We’ll report it if it happens,” Barnes roared down the phone at me.

(Note the redundant “at me”.) Previous roaring appearances:

Andrew Marr, when editor of The Independent, who first made me think about what was happening … Andrew turned round and pointed across the city. “Something’s gone wrong with the bloody weather!” he roared.

“Fisky,” he roars, “that really is the story of Lebanon. Aren’t we are all now ‘on the mosque side of the church’?”

Fisk is quite the roarer himself, as Sean Gannon reminds us:

Corrections and clarifications have never been a feature of Fisk’s reporting on Israel. Most notoriously, he has never properly repudiated the false claims made in his April 2002 articles on the Battle of Jenin in which, despite being in California at the time, he described the “stench of death wafting out from the Palestinian city” and accused “Israel’s undisciplined soldiery” of “running amok,” massacring “hundreds” and concealing the evidence from the world.

West Bank, west coast; what’s the difference?

Posted by Tim B. on 06/30/2007 at 01:34 PM
    1. despite being in California at the time, he described the “stench of death wafting out from the Palestinian city”

      Probably one of the Los Angeles landfills. I call that olfactory license.

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 30 at 02:03 PM • permalink

 

    1. West Bank, west coast; what’s the difference?

      Except for GPS coordinates, almost none.  How astute of you, Tim.

      Posted by RebeccaH on 2007 06 30 at 03:23 PM • permalink

 

    1. Tim, that’s a great blog post.  Counting the first-person-singulars is a wonderful tool for critics.  It’s often seemed to be a secret…  But watching that frequency go up and down over the course of a text can clearly show where the candy’s been hidden, or where the sanity’s been lost.

      Posted by cridland on 2007 06 30 at 03:49 PM • permalink

 

    1. #3: It kinda reminds me of Ricky Ricardo: Ay, ay, ay aayyyy, can-ta y no llores . . .

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 30 at 03:56 PM • permalink

 

    1. “He sounded only fairly moderate when he said on television that “Sir Salman” was an outrage against Islam…”

      Yeah, but Islam is a pustulent boil on the ass of humanity, so outrages against it are a good thing.

      Posted by Dave Surls on 2007 06 30 at 05:21 PM • permalink

 

    1. “Fisk’s reporting on Israel. Most notoriously, he has never properly repudiated the false claims made in his April 2002 articles on the Battle of Jenin in which, despite being in California at the time…”

      We let this piece of crap come into the United States?

      No wonder people are complaining about our lax border controls.

      Posted by Dave Surls on 2007 06 30 at 05:34 PM • permalink

 

    1. So, when does somebody get up off their ass and arrange for Rushdie to become a baronet?

      Not that he, personally, deserves such an honor, but because it would cock a snook at the lunatics complaining about his knighthood.

      Posted by Warmongering Lunatic on 2007 06 30 at 06:11 PM • permalink

 

    1. You have to admire Salman Rushdie for accepting the knighthood because it puts his allegiance front and centre, and confirms that his courage and defiance remains strong.
      Compare the legions of cowardly journalists over the Mohammed cartoons, and the craven reporting from Islamic countries every week.
Posted by Barrie on 2007 06 30 at 08:00 PM • permalink

 

    1. I’m not so sure I could say, when I first had it shouted to me down my phone, that I could reduce my use of personal pronouns so easily.

      I think this is a personal matter for me, myself and me only.

      Posted by Margos Maid on 2007 06 30 at 09:37 PM • permalink

 

    1. The Fisk-oid may have some serious competition from Traceee

      Posted by Margos Maid on 2007 06 30 at 09:51 PM • permalink

 

    1. In line with Warmongering Lunatics demands of a baronetcy ( is that a word) for Rushdie I was kinda hoping we’d make Noel Pearson Australian of the Year as that would have some actual merit but what the hey lets make Salman Rushdie Australian of the Year. Sure there are some obvious technical problems with that but that never stop paelentologists masquerading as climatalogists.

      Posted by the nailgun on 2007 06 30 at 09:54 PM • permalink

 

    1. I can’t make up my mind whether Fisk is the Falstaff or Walter Mitty of Journalism.

      Posted by the nailgun on 2007 06 30 at 09:56 PM • permalink

 

    1. Fisk is the Fisk of Journalism. Just as Falstaff is the Fisk of Shakespearean comic vainglory and cowardice and Walter Mitty is the Fisk of ego-driven escapist fantasy.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 06 30 at 10:33 PM • permalink

 

    1. David Irving is the Fisk of historical integrity.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 06 30 at 10:44 PM • permalink

 

    1. Al Capone was the Fisk of taxpaying good citizenry.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 06 30 at 10:48 PM • permalink

 

    1. Joseph Goebbels is the Fisk of antisemitic propaganda.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 06 30 at 10:54 PM • permalink

 

    1. Could the following Blair knights please come to the service desk.

      Sir Pogria of Shrubbery
      Sir Brett_l of alphabet
      Sir Mark_l of letters
      Sir Ashy of Ash_land
      Sir El-cid of Moonshine

      Come and collect your Blair conference packs.

      Posted by 1.618 on 2007 06 30 at 10:54 PM • permalink

 

    1. #16: Tim Flannery is the Fisk of science.

      Phil Adams is the Fisk of belles lettres.

      Michael Moore is the Fisk of documentaries.

      Say, Geoff, this is fun!

      Harry Reid is the Fisk of statesmanship.

      Posted by paco on 2007 06 30 at 11:10 PM • permalink

 

    1. Farfour is the Fisk of Mickey Mouse ripoffs.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 06 30 at 11:20 PM • permalink

 

    1. Benedict Arnold is the Fisk of patriotic loyalty.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 06 30 at 11:22 PM • permalink

 

    1. Boy, do I ever hate it when illegitimate bastards like Fisk make repetitive redundancies again.

      Posted by andycanuck on 2007 06 30 at 11:22 PM • permalink

 

    1. Judas is the Fisk of Middle-Eastern anti-corruption guardians.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 06 30 at 11:34 PM • permalink

 

    1. thankx Paco

      Yeah. Fun. But could go on all night if it got out of hand.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 06 30 at 11:35 PM • permalink

 

    1. Paco is the Fisk of ethical mutual funds. HAHAHAHA oh well I tried.

      Posted by dean martin on 2007 07 01 at 03:42 AM • permalink

 

    1. My old dad has just suggested that Collingwood is the Fisk of the AFL.

      Posted by geoff on 2007 07 01 at 04:09 AM • permalink

 

    1. #24: That’s right, Dean. We are the English Satin Bags of personal investments: elegant, chic and expensive.

      Posted by paco on 2007 07 01 at 11:34 AM • permalink

 

  1. More Fisk information.

    Cheers

    Posted by J.M. Heinrichs on 2007 07 01 at 02:34 PM • permalink