Yvonne Ridley comments on the British media’s lopsided coverage of the uprising in Tunisia
– devoting airtime to the inconvenience caused to UK tourists and focusing on the role of social media
rather than the “revolutionaries who physically took to the streets and faced down live ammunition, baton charges and tear gas”.
The Western media have been somewhat caught out by the rapid demise of one of the most brutal dictators in the world.
But not to worry,
the CIA famously missed the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989
after working around the clock 24/7 for five decades warning us constantly of the dangers of ignoring the Red Peril.
Still, we all have our off days.
However, when journalists did finally catch up with events in Tunisia
it was the plight of the British holidaymakers that grabbed the headlines,
not the scores of locals who had been gunned down by government forces.
So what harrowing tales emerged at the airports as the Britons piled off the planes to freedom?
BBC Five Live reported the trembling words of a Yorkshireman who said:
“We can’t believe it.
They shut all the bars.
Then when we got t’airport duty free were closed!”
Yes, the BBC went right to the heart of the matter showing once again it had its finger on the pulse of popular opinion.