[News] Hezbollah Denounces Evrensel Interview of Nasrallah as a Fake
news at freedomarchives.org
Mon Sep 4 08:29:42 EDT 2006
September 1, 2006
The Interview That Wasn't
Hezbollah Denounces Evrensel Interview of Nasrallah as a Fake
By ALEXANDER COCKBURN
Hussain Rahhal, Hezbollah's press liaison, has issued a written statement:
"Our secretary general Nasrallah has not given any interviews to
any Turkish or other non-Lebanese journalist during the month of
August. In the face of this imaginary interview that is untruthful,
and hence does damage to journalism, credibility and objectivity,
Hezbollah reserves its right to take legal action against those who
have published it."
This is in reference to an interview purporting to be of Hezbollah's
leader,Sayeed Hassan Nasrallah, by a Turkish collective in Beirut. It
was published in Evrensel, a socialist Turkish daily, on August 12
and 13, causing some stir in the Turkish press. It was translated
into English and posted on least one left site, Marxmail, one of
whose readers forwarded it to CounterPunch. We ran excerpts from it
on August 17.
In an item last weekend I noted charges that the interview was
fraudulent, also interesting and important observations about radical
components in the Shi'a tradition, which might buttress arguments for
the interview's genuineness. I hope this particular fakery won't
discredit those insights, which are important for the left.
Hezbollah's denunciation is categorical, and should be taken as the
last word, though if there are any significant or interesting updates
we'll let CounterPunchers know. I do find Hezbollah's threat of legal
action somewhat comical. Will they also try to drag Rupert Murdoch
and Ted Turner and other barons of the First World press into the
World Court for misrepresentation? Wasn't that the hope of the
proposed New World Information Order, twenty-five or so years ago?
Today we received this statement from Evrensel Daily.
STATEMENT FROM EVRENSEL DAILY
ABOUT THE FORGED NASRALLAH INTERVIEW
Foreign News Desk
Evrensel Daily / ISTANBUL, TURKEY
It is now clearly understood that, the so-called "interview" with
Hezbollah leader, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, which appeared on our
newspaper (12th August) in Turkey is a forgery.
Press Representative of Hezbollah, Hussein Rahhal, on a question
asked by the official Anatolian Agency correspondent, replied that
Nasrallah has not conducted any interview with any Turkish journalist
With this forgery, "Mutlu Sahin" and "Roza Cigdem Erdogan", the
forgers, who are members of the "Sheikh Bedreddin Film Collective"
(Turkish initials, SBFK) have attempted to tarnish the reliability of
Evrensel, a 12-years old socialist newspaper. But this is not all.
They have attempted to erode the reliability of all progressive,
antiwar, antiimperialist sources and people all over the world; as
the "interview" had far reaching consequences than they probably have
imagined in their pathetic minds.
Evrensel General Coordinator, Ihsan Caralan, has made a written
statement about the developments. This statement is printed on the
2nd September, 2006 issue of Evrensel, from the front page... We
believe this statement will shed light into the forgery, though the
real aims and connections of the instigators are still unknown ...
Here is the statement:
"This 'interview' was sent to us by members of the Sheikh
Bedreddin Film Collective members, Mutlu Sahin and Roza Cigdem
Erdogan. The fact that these people who are known as 'documentary
filmmakers' were members of a known cultural organization is the most
important factor that we approached them without any suspicion.
These people, whose "Beirut impressions" were printed in some
other newspapers and internet sites, have also sent us, before the
said "interview", their 'Beirut impressions' and these were printed
on our paper, too.
The so-called interview with Sheikh Nasrallah included
symphatetic remarks about historical persona such as Deniz Gezmis and
Che Guevera. These remarks were found suspicious by us; but at that
time our thought was that Hezbollah, who had won the support of
Islamic circles, was attempting to erase the prejudices and
suspicions in the West and especially, in left-wing circles by these
words. Our aim of publishing the 'interview' was, our desire to
reflect the developments of an important conflict from all perspectives.
After the interview was published, there were various suspicions
raised in various circles. Because of this, we demanded from Mutlu
Sahin that he should immediately confirm that the interview was
actually done. But they have evaded us until the last minute by
continuously saying that they will confirm the interview, will
present documented evidence, make Hezbollah print the interview on
their website etc.
When the news of Anatolian Agency was put into service, we
immediately sent the text to them via Windows Messenger. After
reading the message, and without making any comment, Mutlu Sahin
became offline and from then on, did not answer our phone calls.
As obvious to all, this attitude amounts to nothing more than an
'unqualified forgery'. Our newspaper, since the beginning, has uphold
the principles of peoples' right to true information and learning the
truth. But another principle of our newspaper is follow-up. Thus, we
will continue to seek and tell the truth about these people and the
figures behind them, if there are any.
These people are responsible for cheating us and thus, making us
the instrument of the dissemination of false information. But
nevertheless, we cannot evade our own responsibility as the newspaper
who printed this false interview. We have encountered such a
situation for the first time in our history and this teaches us again
that meticulousness in newsmaking should never be forgotten.
We sincerely apologize from our readers, from the various
publications (online or print) who trusted us and printed this text
and those who translated the text to various languages and sent it to
various news resources."
And here is another recent development from the film collective.
This piece of news below also appeared on Evrensel on 2nd September.
SBFK did not even apologize
Mutlu Sahin and Roza Cigdem Erdogan, who had their names on the
fake interview are nowhere to be found. Meanwhile, SBFK made an
"This sudden development about the interview was totally
unexpected. SBFK Press Representative Yilmaz Kilickaya, Foreign
Relations Coordinator Zafer Hanoglu, members Roza Cigdem Erdogan,
Berfin Gunes and Esra Celik, have gone to Beirut to inform the public
and put an end to the debate.
After weekend, they will inform the public on behalf of SBFK,
which Hezbollah representatives will also attend.
We had declared that we retain some of our rights. We will
explain these rights in this last information we will give.
From now on, the drawees are not Roza Cigdem Erdogan or Mutlu
Sahin, but our collective. Until this last information meeting, we
deem our friends innocent. After that last moment in which all debate
will be put an end, their duties and authorities are suspended
temporarily. We also note that we will not take seriously the attacks
and insults circulating the internet against our collective and our members.
The Freedom Archives
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San Francisco, CA 94110
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