Of the many interesting statements that the Syrian government spokeswoman Bouthaina Shaaban made during her recent speech at Damascus University, amongst the most important was the statement she made about Arab media.
Here is what she said:
Few companies are in charge of Western media, and 90 percent of the Arab media are owned by Saudi Arabia and held by those who are targeting Syria and want to destroy it. That’s why we have to find media and research centres that are not controlled by Western media.
This is a profoundly true statement. Most media which has a reach throughout the Arab world emanates from the corrupt states of the Gulf.
The rulers of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Dubai do not have the interests of the wider Arab world at heart. They make a mockery of Nasser’s ideal of Arab Unity, they spit on their alleged brothers in the Levant and North Africa, they don’t actually give a damn about Palestinian human rights and they are all too happy to undermine secular Arab leaders so that they can sink their fangs into the wealth of civilised Arab states, away from the backwards, and morally repugnant Gulf.
As one of the last truly independent, dignified, modern, secular, tolerant and proud Arab states, I believe that it is in part up to Syria to create Arabic media outlets which can counter the vile propaganda coming out of the Gulf.
The creation of RT which has helped audiences in the west see beyond the propaganda coming from CNN, the BBC, The New York Times and others, is a model which Syria ought to consider. For too long, the Arabs have not had a wide-reaching outlet which allows them to ‘question more’. As a result Arabs are turning against the states which offer them their best hope of prosperity, peace and indeed survival.
The Arabs have done more to harm their own cause of unity and independence than their colonial former masters and current neo-colonial could hope to accomplish. If anything, the divide and conquer strategy which has been employed by the west ever since the Sykes-Picot agreement of 1916, has worked all too well. Whilst Hillary Clinton, Tony Blair and the Turks salivate, the Gulf nations do their bidding through a relentless propaganda war.
The poisoned nettles of the Gulf allow these traitors to dominate a part of the world in which they are in every other intellectual, moral and religious sense, a peripheral element. Religious Muslims throughout the world should curse the House of Saud for their occupation of the holy cities of Mecca and Medina. Why do the Arabs sit by and allow this to happen? Have they lost faith in themselves or have they also lost faith in God?
If the Arabs do not collectively realise who their enemies are, including fellow Arabs, then there is no hope. Syria cannot carry the entire weight of the Arab world on her shoulders, she needs allies. The Arab League is little more than an ideological offshoot of the European Union or Democratic Party, it is a useless organisation that when not selling oil, is selling fellow Arabs down the river.
Others who have warned of this have been killed. Indeed when in 2008 Muammar Gaddafi warned the Arab league about the hells yet to befall the Arab world if the Arab League continued on its course, he was laughed at, including by a younger and perhaps less aware President Assad.
If the Arabs don’t get it now, they never will.