Friday, January 19, 2007
Setting the record straight ...
Well the reaction to the Thaksin Shinawatra interview and my blog here on CNN.com has been pretty strong. I’d say you’re split 50-50 down the middle. Some of you hate me and think I failed in my job as a journalist, failed to ask the right questions, or simply should never have interviewed Thaksin in the first place. The other half of you seemly genuinely pleased and grateful.
So for those that persistently asked why I didn’t quiz Thaksin about the corruption charges, let’s set the record straight, shall we? None of you have heard or read the full interview so far -- it will be broadcast this weekend. What was broadcast and blocked this week was merely a two-minute excerpt.
In the full interview I repeatedly challenge Thaksin on the allegations of corruption, asking for example:
He answers and then I challenge him again …
He answers and the once again I challenge him …
He answers and once again I say:
I think you guys get the picture. I can’t post Thaksin’s responses here until the programme airs tomorrow. But I repeatedly challenged Thaksin about vote rigging, nepotism, his handling of the south, his handling of the war on drugs, I ask him specifically if he ever bent the rules.
You have to appreciate that Talk Asia is a programme which lasts just 22 minutes. I think in that time, I gave Thaksin a fairly thorough interrogation, while remaining balanced and fair. We had a lot of ground that we wanted to cover, so I couldn’t dwell for the full 22 minutes just on the corruption charges, but it would be totally wrong to suggest that I didn’t ask him questions about that.
I hope that assuages some of the anger on this forum. Feel free to keep posting. I’m glad the interview provoked a reaction anyway. Oh, and here is a cartoon of yours truly from today’s Nation. My wife says the ears are perfectly rendered by the artist. She is a cruel woman, that Mrs. Rivers!
ABOUT THIS BLOGHear from CNN reporters across the globe. "In the Field" is a unique blog that will let you share the thoughts and observations of CNN's award-winning international journalists from their far-flung bureaus or on assignment. Whether it's from conflict zone, a summit gathering, or the path least traveled, "In the Field" gives you a personal, front row seat to CNN's global newsgathering team.