Fisk in Australia

My latest New Matilda column is about the recent Australian tour of journalist Robert Fisk:

“[Fisk and I] discussed the media coverage of his visit. He was interviewed on ABC PM, ABC Lateline and for The Age. From what I could make out of Shaun Carney’s interview for The Age, he seemed almost uncertain how to approach Fisk (besides, why was a journalist usually tasked with domestic concerns, as well as being Peter Costello’s biographer, interviewing a foreign correspondent?). Carney seemed more interested in the fact that the hand he was shaking had touched Osama bin Laden’s, rather than Fisk’s impressive body of work. At least he gave Fisk the opportunity to criticise the New York Times (copy from which is extensively reproduced in the Fairfax press) and suggest a name change for that august newspaper of record: ‘comma, officials say, full stop.’

“[Sydney Peace Prize head] Stuart Rees said he’d contacted the Sydney Morning Herald and they’d been interested in running Fisk’s Sydney talk on the following day’s opinion page. They had wanted a copy of Fisk’s speech, which he’d refused, and Fisk said, ‘they should come to the talk and take notes.’ Suffice to say, the Herald completely ignored Fisk’s Australian tour.”

A collection of New Matilda columns can be found here.

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