Thursday, January 23, 2014
Sky News: promoting an antisemite
Sky News' 'exclusive interview' with Dieudonne M’bala M’bala - the antisemitic friend of Nicolas Anelka who was finally charged yesterday by the FA for his 'quenelle' gesture. This has been Sky News' leading story all evening, taking up nearly 10 minutes at the start of each news programme. The programme allowed Dieudonne a platform to present himself as the victim of injustice and to proclaim Anelka as a 'prince' - a great heroic figure standing like him against world injustice. The Sky News interviewer did not ask a single probing question of Dieudonne. The issue of his convictions for racial incitement against Jews was briefly mentioned but Dieudonne simply said that he had been involved in many court cases and had won many of them. There was not a single question about any of his explicit on-the-record antisemitic comments, nor even a mention about his vicious anti-Israel activities. To cap it all, the program segment ended with the interviewer - outside Dieudonne's 'sold-out' venue in France this evening - getting the opinions of Dieudonne's adoring fans. The only counter-point to Dieudonne provided in the entire segment was a 5-line written statement from a spokesperson from the Council of Christians and Jews saying something about the quenelle being offencive to Jews.
As I made it clear in my first report about this case, the UK media has continued to downplay or simply ignore the extent of Dieudonne's antisemitism and hence this has allowed Anelka's claim that 'he was only showing support for his comedian friend' to gain sympathy. The timing of Sky's puff piece on Dieudonne seems to have been chosen to put pressure on the FA to pardon Anelka.