Ribbity Blog

baqqa mqarqra
A Frog's-eye view

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Sunday, September 22, 2002
 
ARABIC SPEAKER

kull al-ihtiraam ("bravo") to Gerard Russell, the Head of the Media and Outreach Unit of Britain's Foreign and Commonwealth Office, for being the first Western diplomat that I have seen interviewed in Arabic. Mr. Russell, as British as you can get (he looks like a member of the royal family), was interviewed today on the Arabic-language Al-Jazeera, and I have to say that I was impressed. Apart from a few "ya`ni"s (the Arabic equivalent of throwing "like" in to the middle of your sentences), he packed a pretty sharp Modern Standard Arabic (the form of Arabic used for journalistic purposes). You can see his picture and read his words on the East-West Record site. Incidentally, according to the site, he also gave an interview for Al-Mustaqbal, a Lebanese newspaper. As I have mentioned before, the Lebanese press tends to be much more accurate and less propaganda-orientated than its Palestinian counterpart.

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