FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Hezbollah Denounces Evrensel Interview of Nasrallah as a Fake

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?

Postscript:

Today we received this statement from Evrensel Daily.

STATEMENT FROM EVRENSEL DAILY

ABOUT THE FORGED NASRALLAH INTERVIEW

Taylan Bilgic
Cihan Celik
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 in August.

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 announcement yesterday:

“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.

 

 

 

More articles by:

Alexander Cockburn’s Guillotined! and A Colossal Wreck are available from CounterPunch.

April 24, 2018
Carl Boggs
Russia and the War Party
Dan Kovalik
The Empire Turns Its Sights on Nicaragua – Again!
William A. Cohn
Carnage Unleashed: the Pentagon and the AUMF
Nathan Kalman-Lamb
The Racist Culture of Canadian Hockey
María Julia Bertomeu
On Angers, Disgusts and Nauseas
Nick Pemberton
How To Buy A Seat In Congress 101
Ron Jacobs
Resisting the Military-Now More Than Ever
Sonali Kolhatkar
The Left, Syria and Fake News
Manuel E. Yepe
The Confirmation of Democracy in Cuba
Peter Montgomery
Christian Nationalism: Good for Politicians, Bad for America and the World
Ted Rall
Bad Drones
Jill Richardson
The Latest Attack on Food Stamps
Andrew Stewart
What Kind of Unionism is This?
Ellen Brown
Fox in the Hen House: Why Interest Rates Are Rising
April 23, 2018
Patrick Cockburn
In Middle East Wars It Pays to be Skeptical
Thomas Knapp
Just When You Thought “Russiagate” Couldn’t Get Any Sillier …
Gregory Barrett
The Moral Mask
Robert Hunziker
Chemical Madness!
David Swanson
Senator Tim Kaine’s Brief Run-In With the Law
Dave Lindorff
Starbucks Has a Racism Problem
Uri Avnery
The Great Day
Nyla Ali Khan
Girls Reduced to Being Repositories of Communal and Religious Identities in Kashmir
Ted Rall
Stop Letting Trump Distract You From Your Wants and Needs
Steve Klinger
The Cautionary Tale of Donald J. Trump
Kevin Zeese - Margaret Flowers
Conflict Over the Future of the Planet
Cesar Chelala
Gideon Levy: A Voice of Sanity from Israel
Weekend Edition
April 20, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Ruling Class Operatives Say the Darndest Things: On Devils Known and Not
Conn Hallinan
The Great Game Comes to Syria
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Mother of War
Andrew Levine
“How Come?” Questions
Doug Noble
A Tale of Two Atrocities: Douma and Gaza
Kenneth Surin
The Blight of Ukania
Howard Lisnoff
How James Comey Became the Strange New Hero of the Liberals
William Blum
Anti-Empire Report: Unseen Persons
Lawrence Davidson
Missiles Over Damascus
Patrick Cockburn
The Plight of the Yazidi of Afrin
Pete Dolack
Fooled Again? Trump Trade Policy Elevates Corporate Power
Stan Cox
For Climate Mobilization, Look to 1960s Vietnam Before Turning to 1940s America
William Hawes
Global Weirding
Dan Glazebrook
World War is Still in the Cards
Nick Pemberton
In Defense of Cardi B: Beyond Bourgeois PC Culture
Ishmael Reed
Hollywood’s Last Days?
Peter Certo
There Was Nothing Humanitarian About Our Strikes on Syria
Dean Baker
China’s “Currency Devaluation Game”
Ann Garrison
Why Don’t We All Vote to Commit International Crimes?
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail