Thursday, February 25, 2010

What I Learned From the Events of June 28, Part I, Mr. Tetovski was Right

Mr. Tetovski Was Right.

Many years ago, actually during the early '80's, I was a graduate student in Cairo. One of my best friends was from Bulgaria. This was during the era of the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe was behind the 'iron curtain'. One evening I was having dinner with her family at their flat, and after a few drinks, a discussion of politics and media ensued. I don't remember the exact context of the discussion, but I remember Mr. Tetovski telling me that Time magazine was far more dangerous than Bulgarian journals. He knew that I read Time every week and believed what I read to be just as true as if were the Bible.

I asked him how could that be, and he told me that the Bulgarian press was so full of propaganda, and that the propaganda was so blatant that everyone knew how to disregard the fact from the fiction. Time, on the other hand, (and yes he admitted to reading it on occasion) was written in a much more sophisticated manner, so it was much more difficult to discern the truth from the biases. Because of this, he argued, Americans tend to believe everything they read in their media as the complete truth, when in reality, it was just as biased as the Bulgarian media. Since bias was more sophisticated, it was inherentedly more dangerous.

I pondered what Mr. Tetovski said, and knew that it somehow made sense. At any rate, I filed the conversation somewhere in the back of my mind and never forgot it. Now, some 25+ years later, after reading the American press' accounts of what happened in Honduras on and after June 28, 2009, and knowing the Honduran reality first hand versus the blatant media bias, I can now say, "Mr. Tetovski, you were absolutely right..."

Lesson learned: Don't believe the mainstream Western media.