Sunday, August 7, 2011

Angry Birds

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

I was holding my Blackberry device and going through the recent updates on my Blackberry messengers list, what I noticed is that mostly everyone in my list has changed his or her display picture into an anti Al Jazeera channel or a sarcastic picture of Qatar leaders. In addition to that I read many statuses which were furious about Qatar and Al Jazeera in particular. Minutes later I found out the reason behind this hate campaign, was a documentary released by Al Jazeera English channel about Bahrain's unrest since Feb 14th under the name of  "Shouting in the dark". Honestly, I did not watch the documentary in details, but I skimmed through it all and concluded what type of a report it was and why it has made so many people angry, yet it made so many people happy as well. Since I am concerned in this post about the angry people, I will not be discussing the others. I will only talk about the angry people, people like me.. or let me call them "Angry Birds".

This post is a message to the Angry Birds, a message to all the Angry Birds who did not feel comfortable with the type of report the channel has broadcasted.
In the beginning I would like to shed light on two reasons which I think made people like Angry Birds:

1. The documentary video broadcasted more than 50 minutes of a one sided story, the opposition side of the story, in addition to the total ignoring of the other side views. The documentary had many wrong assumptions and only brought the bright side of the opposition uprising, and to me, I do believe that saying half the truth is much worse than lying. The bottom line regarding that documentary is that it was unfair and one sided. (I will not go into the discussion of what agenda does this channel serves)

2. The report came from Al Jazeera channel which works from inside our neighbor country, part of GCC, a country that shares 95% of our culture and heritage if not 100%, Qatar. How can they approve such report to be shown on a channel that is supposed to be owned by them?

What was shocking to me is the way most Angry Birds responded to what they felt as an offensive report in their right. Since the video was shown on Al Jazeera channel, all I saw was furious hate messaging on social networks, swearing at the channel and at Qatar in general, hate and angry broadcasts, apart from few people that really touched the core of condemning this report. To me, how Angry Birds reacted to the above is just an emotional way to deal with their Anger!

I am sorry Angry Birds, but why don't we stop being angry at the channel, the opposition, and Qatar? Why don't we take a deep breath and accept the following fact: The Opposition won on this.. They scored a goal.. and we are another goal down.. Instead of blaming the channel and what ask for the reasons behind producing such a report.. before we blame the opposition for helping in such a report, instead of blaming Qatar's government or people for not taking any sort of action against the channel. Why don't we blame ourselves? Why don't we blame ourselves that we did not work enough to let the world know our part of the story? Why did not we have proper correspondences with Al Jazeera officials in the past? In the days of 2010 and before, when Budaya road was full with burnt tires every weekend (for example)? Why did not we contact any other international channels to work with to produce our side of the story? Why do we think that we should be waiting for them to approach us and to be fair with us? The opposition worked for years and years to approach those channels and reporters, they have established a strong relationship and contact with such organization and international media. It is about knowing the right people and having the right connections, and they have been the leading part in this area. What we need today is to stand up for ourselves and not wait for them to pick our stories and facts. International channels, national, youtube, any other sources can make ourselves heard. Lets Stop blaming other people just because they won or because they don't agree with us and lets start working hard to achieve our mission. It is a long long way, they started it many years before, we are in the beginning and the road is very long.
Lets stop blaming the others, Lets blame the right people by standing in front of a mirror. and then maybe we can finally hit the green pigs, win the three stars and free the eggs!

Ahmed Abdullatif

6th August 2011