Syrian President Bashir Assad granted a rare interview this week with the US Corporate Media, which can be read in its full text here. The interview was given to NBC. It should be noted that NBC is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation, which expends millions annually on political lobbying and is a huge contracting concern at all levels of American government.
The interview itself was remarkable on several levels. Most notably, it illustrates clearly the stark contrast between an educated and dedicated leader and the effete cultural elites who pass for intellectuals here in the West. The NBC operative, whose idea of investigative journalism evidently consists solely of taking notes at official press conferences, found himself lost when confronted with facts. His obvious purpose was not to investigate conditions in Syria and report it to the public, but to engage in considerable confirmation bias.
Overall, it was an embarrassing performance. The American journalist began in an arrogant, almost bullying tone, which quickly passed into repeating sound-bites and innuendo, and finally ended by playing the Victim Card. The first question to pass his arrogant mouth was:
"A few weeks ago, you told lawmakers here that you would retake every inch of Syria. The US State Department called that statement 'delusional'. You're a long way from winning this war aren't you? Never mind taking every inch of Syria."
This is the very sort of pomposity and vulgarity that distinguish modern American journalism. Assad patiently tried to explain to his rather sluggish intellect that wars were unpredictable and tended not to function as smoothly as they do in Hollywood scripts. After presenting before Assad a series of innuendoes---all of which the president ably answered---the NBC journalist broke down into a series of whining accusations. Specimens of which were:
"You're still not giving me the impression that you care very much!"
"Is this how you explain the war to your children at the breakfast table?"
"Have you ever cried over what has happened to Syria?"
Is it any wonder that nobody outside of the US takes these Corporate Media poltroons seriously? Even worse is the fact that many here do take them seriously. Sadly, the interviewer reflected too many evident defects in our own cultural attitudes. Many of his questions are clearly premised on the cynicism and narcissism that teaches the personal is political. For example, when Assad tries to explain to him that the Alliance was constructed on common values instead of backroom political dealings, the reporter seems stunned. He also cannot follow Assad's seeming indifference to his public image as opposed to his duty to the Syrian country. In fact, at one point he seems to sneer at Assad's belief in patriotism, and seems confused by the lack of interest Assad shows in the US elections.
The state of American journalism today is a national disgrace. But President Assad showed the way to deal with it. Confront it with the truth. The truth is one thing that the Corporate Media cannot tolerate, hence its complete absence from the US Media.
Unfortunately, truth is becoming a rare commodity in our culture today, and few Americans have any especial interest in hearing it. That is how the Media has reached the sad state it is in today. Superficiality has become the defining characteristic of our postmodern dystopia: but as this interview demonstrates, superficiality and posturing collapses in the face of the truth.