Sunday, August 27, 2006

George in Lebanon 2: the squib gets damper

As already promised, I had another listen to George Galloway broadcasting from Lebanon this evening, expecting that either he'd crack and say something offensive (he didn't, particularly, although he does apparently thinks the Israelis poisoned Yasser Arafat - which is weird, albeit not offensive per se), or that alternatively, he'd be more impressive than I had expected. The latter having been true yesterday, I was expecting the former today.

The reality was that neither happened.

He basically did a show that he could have done from London, only instead he was talking from Lebanon via the Talksport UK studios. He took a few calls from partisan pro-Israelis who called in with the same scripted questions as yesterday - "why don't you report from Haifa" being a favourite. He bashed them all, as you'd expect from the guy whose colleague in London controls the "mute" button. He took some more calls, from people who fulsomely agreed with him. He fulsomely agreed with them in return.

But so what?

Galloway could do the show that happened tonight in his sleep. The only thing differentiating it from the show he does every week, was that he happened to be doing it from Lebanon rather than London. The nuts and bolts of it were otherwise virtually identical. Basically, the substantive differences were that he got some notoriety for broadcasting it from Lebanon, and presumably also that it cost TalkSport the price of a plane ticket.

If this is ground breaking "free speech radio" (and incidentally, Galloway says he gets a fairer "crack of the whip" from commercial broadcasters than he does from the "Bush and Blair Corporation"), then I can quite happily give it a miss.


Blogger stroppybird said...


You do realise that you will never get back all those hours of your life this weekend spent listening to George...

3:38 AM  
Blogger voltaires_priest said...

What, all 4 of them? :D:D:D

3:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the decision to do the show from Lebanon was a good one: it obviously attracted a larger audience, including listeners in Israel and the Arab countries. It also allowed for some poignant accounts of the aftermath the war.

Calling it a damp squib is rather bizarre. I'm also supprised you imply the show was mediocre. Galloway is the most articulate anti-war campiagner in this country IMO.

5:55 AM  
Blogger stroppybird said...

I didn't hear the radio programme but did see a clip on DSPFW of him on Sky. Whether I agreed with him or not I did think he was a good debater, but must say i thought he was just ranty on the TV.He seemed to be losing his cool rather than arguing the points.

7:10 AM  
Blogger voltaires_priest said...


Other than the fact that it was done from the physical location of Lebanon (which, on its content, it need not have been), what wasn't mediocre about it? Galloway did the same schtick he always does, twice a week every week, except this time he was doing it from overseas.

To be honest, even from his perspective it must surely seem like a missed opportunity.

3:21 PM  

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