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I was stunned by the taunting and unprofessional interview of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad by Mike Wallace as shown on 60 Minutes.  Mike Wallace interupted answers by the Iranian President and kept trying to present a perspective in the questioning IMHO.  I am not a fan of Ahmadinejad but Wallace's interview was embarassing.  What do you think?

Wallace's tone was condescending.  His body language and hand motions were childish and disrespectful.  Iranian TV needs only to show this to their people to demonstrate the rude and discounting behavior of "the Americans" towards their elected president.  It is true that Ahmadinejad evaded questions by putting forward long explanations, but these should have been listened to and mined for clarification rather than dimissed as evasions and insisting on yes or no answers to what are obviously complex problems for the Iranian President.

Needless to say... Mike Wallace molded many bullets for the Bush war propaganda effort to put us in conflict with Iran.      Iranian support of Hezbollah seems an insufficient reason  to go to war with Iran and Wallaces's questions suggested that American war rhetoric against Iran is justified because they support Hezbollah.

60 Minutes needs to look at this interivew criticaly and think that they could have sent Ed bradley - an excellent journalist and interviewer.  The reason I wrote this diary is I am was surprised by my reaction to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the interview techniques of Mike Wallace. Is it just me or was Mike Wallace an idiot.

Originally posted to Brother Dave on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:14 AM PDT.


So was it just Brother Dave or was MIke Wallace a totally rude, jingoistic idiot

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Comment Preferences

  •  60 Minutes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jay Elias

    60 minutes is generally pretty rude to everybody.

    Lying can never save us from another lie - Vaclav Havel

    by Muwarr90 on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:10:25 AM PDT

    •  yeah (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I guess you've never watched it before. And we should be deferential to holocaust deniers, even if they don't really mean it. (I thought Ahmedinejad acquitted himself fairly well, but I had expected him to - dude is scarily media-savvy in the same way Bush is, or used to be)

  •  Wow - Mike Wallace, huh? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    If it was his brother I would've expected it, but I used to have respect fro Mike Wallace.  Oh, well.  Maybe he went the way of Bob Woodword.

  •  Interesting (0+ / 0-)

    I didn't see the interview...but a couple days ago I was listening to a rightwing radio guy going on and on about what a bad job Wallace did. He was especially worked up that Wallace apparently didn't consider Ahmadinejad anti-semitic.

    so...interesting that my librul pals weren't too impressed either

  •  I also saw the (12+ / 0-)

    interview on "60 Minutes"

    I did not think Mike Wallace ws out of bounds in his questioning of the Iranian president. It was a difficult interview and imo Wallace did a good job under the circumstances.

    •  Ditto. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tmendoza, Brother Dave

      Ahmadinejad showed himself to be just as oily and sleazy as Bush, with his attempts to "reach out" and be "reasonable."  He said a lot of stuff that, in my book, was pretty clearly calculated to appeal to the average American.  In fact, if you go by what he said in the interview, he seems like a reasonable person.

      Of course, he did not go into nuclear proliferation or wiping out Israel during the interview, so it's not quite a complete picture.

      I was also struck by Wallace's attitude, which seemed to be, "You have to answer my questions!  I'm MIKE FRIGGIN' WALLACE!"  That can work in America, but seeing as Ahmadinejad has no responsibility of any kind to Americans, it may not have been the best interviewing approach.

      As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17

      by gpm on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:22:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  True (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        stodghie, suzq, 3goldens, gpm

        He said a lot of stuff that, in my book, was pretty clearly calculated to appeal to the average American.

        Did you notice how Ahmadinejad specifically mentioned the 45 million Americans who don't have health care?  

        Liberal: "I still think it's a respectable word. Its root is "liber," the Latin word for "free," and isn't that what we are all about?"--Mary McGrory

        by mini mum on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:30:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes he did say that... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          but sadly it is true and is one of the best examples that evidenses to me that our fucking priorities are screwed up in the good ole USA.  

          Having an antagonist point out your flaws when the yare true can be demoralizing, I know.  But for hell's sake, going to war with Iran will not solve that problem.

        •  Oh, yeah. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tmendoza, Brother Dave

          I almost shouted, "WTF?" when he said that, which would have been embarrassing since I was watching it with my parents and two young nephews.

          He really did strike me as similar to Bush in many ways, as far as demeanor goes.  I wonder if Ahmadinejad is really unable to speak English, or if that's just some sort of faux-populist posture, like Bush's fake Texas accent.

          As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17

          by gpm on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:38:29 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Brother Dave

            It's been said that Stalin spoke English and pretended not to so he could eavesdrop on Churchill & FDR.  

            He may speak passable English and chose to have his comments interpreted to leave some doubt.

            Liberal: "I still think it's a respectable word. Its root is "liber," the Latin word for "free," and isn't that what we are all about?"--Mary McGrory

            by mini mum on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:32:40 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  The family that watches 60 Min together (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            is a mighty smart family indeed.

            •  :) To be fair, (0+ / 0-)

              the nephews were not watching, they were just wrestling each other.  Hopefully the intelligence sinks in by osmosis.

              As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17

              by gpm on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:54:15 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  What did you expect? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        fabooj, tmendoza, gpm

        Of coarse he is like Bush, they are both presidents driven by their religous faith on crusades for power over Middle Eastern oil.

    •  Wallace was insulting (7+ / 0-)

      Mike Wallace was very insulting to President Ahmadinejad. Wallace may not like him, but the FOX-style tone and interruptions were no way to treat a head of state. It was almost like Wallace was channeling O'Reilly. There was at least one incident of Wallace shouting Ahmadinejad down. I don't remember seeing Wallace act like that to other world leaders, even if they were "bad guys."

      It looked to me like Ahmadinejad was very disgusted by Wallace, although he did a good job of keeping up an air of amused indifference to Wallace's ranting behavior. Frankly, the American looked crazy and the Iranian looked sane. That should play well in Middle East media.

      Are you shaking or biting the invisible hand?

      by puppethead on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:24:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I can't agree (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        suzq, Caldonia, gpm

        I've never been a big Wallace fan, but Ahmadinejad came off as either dementedly unhinged or crazy like a fox.  He weaseled and evaded and reframed questions in a way that would have annoyed even the most patient interviewer.  He came across to me as an Iranian version of Tom DeLay--a dangerous and irrational demagogue who presents himself as a populist and smiles when he shouldn't.  He also reminded me a lot of Bush and Cheney during our excuses for "presidential debates" in 2004, where every serious question on domestic policy was regarded as an opportunity to regale us of the wonders of the No Child Left Behind Act.

        If Ahmadinejad's interview was an attempt to convince America that he is the Islamic world's Mikhail Gorbachev, it failed.  On the other hand, if the man is trying to bait this country into yet another unbelievably stupid foreign policy act, I think he helped his cause.

        •  That seems an odd response, (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          queen, Brother Dave

          given that Ahmadinejad tried to give responses backed with a bit of history, of which Americans seem to have no knowledge (or, in Wallace's case, no patience for).  Ahmadinejad didn't give nonsense "sound bite" answers,  unlike our leaders, and struck me as pretty reasonable.  I'm not a fan or detractor of Ahmadinejad (my Iranian friends aren't fans), but I would note that Rafsanjani lost the election last year in large part due to our invasion of Iraq, and the clear threat we pose to Iran.  Prior to that the polls were favoring Rafsanjani, but Iraq and the foolish threats made by Bush swung the election to the fundamentalists.  Don't forget that the US doesn't have a favorable history in Iraq, and we aren't fondly remembered there for overthrowing their democracy in 1953 and installing a brutal dictatorship.  It took Islamic fundamentalism to expel us.

          •  asdf (0+ / 0-)

            I don't have the Iranian friends that you do, so I can speak only from an American perspective.  Like it or not, or fair or not, most Americans know Ahmadinejad as a fount of outrageous and deliberately provocative rhetoric, none of which he disavowed or clarified last night.  For example, he is on record as calling the Holocaust a myth, and that's not a historical statement, although I suppose it's cynically "reasonable" in the same way that denying evolution is reasonable--as part of an appeal to a radical portion of the electorate.

            I readily agree with you that Ahmandinejad's election was, in part, a response to Bush; that the United States is threatening Iran and wrongfully may attack it; and that our country has as bad a history there as we do anywhere--SAVAK comes to mind.  But watching him made me distinctly uncomfortable.  If he made me nervous, I only can imagine what our paranoid presidential administration thought.

            •  Ahmandinejad's exact comments (interpreted) were (0+ / 0-)

              "They have created a myth in the name of the Holocaust and consider it above God, religion and the prophets".  In my reading that isn't calling the holocaust a myth in the sense of non-existence (rather a powerful story), but is a poor choice of words for an english-speaking audience without that linguistic distinction.  I don't know if that's due to his words or the interpreter's.  I would agree with his apparent sentiment that the term "holocaust" evokes a strong response, and that there's a strong sense of collective guilt associated with it.

  •  I watched part of it (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    corvo, highfive

    and it definitely seemed pretty slanted but Mahmoud seemed to handle the questions well and I remember him calling Wallace a Bush hack or something like that.

  •  You go in (6+ / 0-)

    with the interviewer you have, not the interviewer you wish you had.

  •  Well... (0+ / 0-)

    ...I'm sure if Ahmadinejad had wanted Bradlee, he could have had him.

    60 Minutes has always conducted themselves this way when interviewing leaders of nations or groups hostile to the US - it is how they maintain their reputation for "asking the tough questions".  And I can't blame Wallace too much; Junior Gotti has been less evasive in some interviews.

    The urge to save humanity is almost always a false face for the urge to rule it. ~ H.L. Mencken

    by Jay Elias on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:19:27 AM PDT

  •  I thought Wallace was (7+ / 0-)

    disrespectful.  I was kind of stunned when Ahmadinejad said he needed to wrap up the interview as he had other appointments, Wallace said in a stern tone, "None more important than this one, Mr. President," and rapped his pen on his notepad.

    Also, it was a long interview . . . I'm sure they left a lot of stuff on the cutting-room floor.  But they included all the nonsense with Ahmadinejad challanging Wallace on the phrasing of questions until they worked-out a question they both agreed was fair.  There was no reason to include that and then cut short the answers.

    I'm no fan of Ahmadinejad (if that needed to be said) but the interview sucked.

    "In the beginning the universe was created. This has been widely criticized and generally regarded as a bad move." -- Douglas Adams

    by LithiumCola on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:20:40 AM PDT

  •  C-SPAN will be airing the interview (5+ / 0-)

    unedited and in its entirety tonight at 8PM EST.  Didn't see it last night.

    Every time history repeats itself the price goes up - Anon.

    by Pithy Cherub on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:21:32 AM PDT

  •  Well I suppose they would have sent Bradley (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Maven

    had he been successfully landing interviews in Iran since Ayatolah Khomeni took power in 1979, but as it was Mike Wallace who had been able to get in and get the big interviews there I guess they had no choice in the matter.

  •  Wallace Not An Idiot, Just Wallace (0+ / 0-)

    Mike Wallace was just being Mike Wallace. His style has always been confrontational and he has a knack for not putting up with bullshit. Iran has cultural differences and they should be respected but so do we. Surely, the Iranian president knew what he was getting (or should have) when he agreed to the interview with Wallace.
    As for Wallace asking about Iran and Hezbollah and Iran's too-close-for-comfort support of Hezbollah and how it's perceived in the west, why not? Wallace should have hit him hard with that. The Iranian president continuously lies about his support of Hezbollah and his nuclear weapon facilities, so why put up with it? Like any hard-hitting journalist, Wallace went to Iraq to get answers to questions a lot of us in the west want, to honest answers and not responses that are meant to stall or lies.  
    Look, the president of Iraq is not one of the good guys. He deserves to be treated as he would treat any of the women or any person disagreeeing with him. The last person he should be interviewed by is a gentleman.

    •  Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (0+ / 0-)

      is the President of IRAN.... but then that could be an honest error.  I was not saying the questions are out of line about Hezbollah...but the method used by Wallace yielded little NEW information.  I am unaware of Iranian denial of support for Hezbollah?  In fact I think that they declare open support for all Islamic revolutionary movements, which includes the Hezbollah.

      •  How are you unaware? (0+ / 0-)

        Watch the news for 10 minutes and you will hear a Iranian official denying support for Hezbollah.  Someone from CNN asked an Iranian official today if he they were supplying Hezbollah with weapons.  The guy said no Hezbollah can buy what it needs ont "the market."  And then he attacked the US for supplying Israel.  So yes everyone knows that Iran is supplying Hezbollah, but Iran won't admit as much.

        "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

        by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:31:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And the US denied coordinating the attack (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Brother Dave

          on Lebanon with Israel, even though Bush had to apologize to Blair for getting caught in the UK with planes full of missles on their way to Israel.  So what?  Every arms-supplying nation plays these games.  The US is just the biggest player with the imperialist motives.

          •  With 3 Billion bucks a year (0+ / 0-)

            in military and other aid to Israel, our government is not about to have a client state get into a war and not be the winner.  The denial of assistance and coordination is just part of the game.  Skrekk you are right, the double standard is apparently ok and applauded by some I am sick of the dishonest foreign policy that it creates.

            •  really? (0+ / 0-)

              Who is denying that the US gives Isreal military assistance?  I think that is pretty well established.  Its a matter of public record in this country.

              The case for coordination in this conflict is not so clear.  Everyone agrees that Hezbollah initiated the action (perhaps at the behest of Iran).  Israel responded so quickly and violently, that its hard to believe that Washington was calling the shots.  My problem with the Bush on this one is that Bush did not use his leverage with Isreal to restrain the bombing and incursions.  Does that qualify as coordination?  Your call.

              "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

              by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:21:11 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Not everyone agrees on that (0+ / 0-)

                There's been a low-level border skirmish going on for some time now, and Israel kidnapped a doctor and his brother in Gaza shortly before the kidnapping of the 2 IDF soldiers.  To say that one or the other side "started" it is to use an arbitrary point in time as the start, and ignores the fact that Israel has previously negotiated numerous hostage exchanges without demolishing a neighboring country.

                Read Sy Hersh's article at:
                link to New Yorker article

                If you still deny coordination with the Bush administration, you might want to look into why Bush felt the need to apologize to Blair for sending plane loads of missiles to Israel during the conflict, while all other parties were calling for an immediate cease-fire, or why the administration was calling for a "sustainable" cease-fire, but just not now...:
                Bush apology

    •  nuclear weapons... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brother Dave

      The Iranian president continuously lies about his support of Hezbollah and his nuclear weapon facilities

      Let's see: the NPT specifically ALLOWS uranium enrichment as well as other technical research.  There is no apparent evidence to date, according to the UN, that Iran has a weapons program.  You seem to assume there is one because...the Bush administration says there is?  What other assumptions have you swallowed from Bush?

      In my view, Iran NEEDS nuclear weapons, if only to hold the US at bay - a government which has made clear threats against Iran, has a previous history in overthrowing Iran's democracy, and a recent history in waging unprovoked war against one of Iran's neighbors.  Further, Iran is now bordered on two sides by the military forces of that same government.

      •  US Policy towards (0+ / 0-)

        North Korea is all you need to look at to confirm your point.

        •  Or Iraq. (0+ / 0-)

          I used to be against nuclear proliferation, but given what we've done in Iraq I think the better thing would have been for Hussein to have developed nukes, and prevented this long-term fiasco.  The US seems to invade countries prior to their going nuclear, in order so that we can continue to control those countries.  That seems to be the distinction between Iraq & North Korea, and the reason we're pushing on Iran now and not on North Korea.  With the noted exception of the US, no such country (with an egomaniacal brutal dictator and a land mass to protect) is going to use those weapons except defensively.

          •  This is not the solution (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Brother Dave

            The solution is for the US to stop fighting preemptive wars.

            Nuclear proliferation just increases the likelihood of nuclear exchange that would kill millions of people.  And of course the more nuclear weapons there on the planet, the more likely a terrorist group could get its hands on one.

            "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

            by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:40:07 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  True, but the US needs to pluck the log (0+ / 0-)

              from its own eye first, and stop new weapons development, renewal of old weapons, modular systems testing of old weapons and nuclear "pits", using depleted uranium on the battlefield, and abrogating nuclear weapons treaties or the ABM.  Most importantly, we have fulfilled none of our draw-down obligations under the NPT, and all other countries know this.  No other nation should stop its own weapons development until the US becomes a responsible partner.

            •  Iraq was not a 'preemptive war'. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              Whatever the real motivation, that wasn't it - that was just legalistic jargon to justify it to the US public.  Oil, a military presence in the mideast after getting kicked out of Saudi Arabia after 9/11, and the arrogant scheme of "the pangs of a new mideast" are closer to the truth.

            •  for once (0+ / 0-)

              I agree with your comment completely.

      •  I agree with your assessment (0+ / 0-)

        The lesson of Iraq is simple:  Get nuclear weapons as fast as possible so the US can never attack you.  Iraq, the only axis of evil member, without a weapons program is the only club member that gets invaded.  Simple enough.

        Of course it would be disaster for world stability and peace for Iran to get the bomb.  It would greatly increase the possibility of a nuclear exchange.  And if we take Ahmad at his world, he (or his successors) might just supply the bomb to Hezbollah or some other group.

        So the US (and the world) should do whatever we can, short of military action, to prevent Iran from getting the bomb. We should give Iran security guarantees, we should give them free trade deals, whatever.  This might not work, but its worth an effort.  (Of course with the current president all of this is a pipe dream anyway).

        "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

        by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:30:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Why would it be a disaster? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          I challenge your assumption on this.  Iran has no such history of instability, and is in fact one of the few stable democracies in the mideast - even though it might not be a form you or I might like, as it's closer to the religious democracy right-wing Christians would prefer.  When only one antagonistic power in a region has nukes, you can argue that it's an unstable situation, such as when India had them before Pakistan.  Right now, only Israel has them in the mideast, and has indicated a willingness to use them.  Iran is in a dangerous neighborhood, with 3 antagonistic nuclear powers within striking range of its territory.  And the most dangerous, aggressive, hostile nuclear power in the world, the US, has made threats against it.

  •  I liked the Colbert interview after Wallace's (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BarbinMD, tmendoza, Nightprowlkitty

    They portrayed Colbert as an exceptionally warm, exceptionally funny human being!  It was PERFECT!

  •  Is this the lead-up to war? (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Euroliberal, 3goldens, corvo, Brother Dave, gpm

    Remember before we invaded Iraq Dan Rather had a one-on-one with Saddam Hussein?
    Funny how these Newsidiots can look at Ahmadinijad and see evil, but George Bush is totally OK when he goes invading other countries, destroying their infrastructure, their antiquities, killing their people, etc.
    Don't get me wrong, Ahmadinijad is a pipsqueak snarky boy-man. Trouble is, our media is trumping him up more than even he can do for himself.
    Even my mom was screaming at the TV saying "George Bush is a war monger!"
    CBS long ago lost its credibiltity. I think it really hit when Rather gushed that he was there for the prez right after 9-11.
    And now, we have Katie Couric! Somehow, seeing her curled up on a chair, with a kittenish come hither look on a magazine cover doesn't give me a lot of hope that she's going to know what theye hell she's doing.
    Ed Murrow has spent so much time rolling in his grave he must be half way to China!

    All Truth is non-partisan

    by MA Liberal on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:27:55 AM PDT

  •  Wallace was Wallace (5+ / 0-)

    The interview was everything I expected: confrontation from Wallace and evasion from Ahmadinejad.  Ahmadinejad filibustered practically every question and Wallace didn't seem to land many punches.

    The bit about the jacket should have ended up on the cutting room floor.  

    Liberal: "I still think it's a respectable word. Its root is "liber," the Latin word for "free," and isn't that what we are all about?"--Mary McGrory

    by mini mum on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:29:03 AM PDT

  •  Ahmadinejad seemed to be more in touch with (6+ / 0-)

    reality than our Dear Leader.

    At least it sounded like he takes time in the day to stay current on things other than his own narrow focused agenda (meaning Bush's way).

    As to any statements regarding Israel and the Holocaust - we don't know of anyone who uses inflammatory rhetoric, do we?

    Sadly, due to Mike Wallace's condescending behavior and the own demonstrated incompetence and obtuseness of George Bush, I couldn't help thinking that in another time and place, Ahmadinejad with his education and obviously quick wit would have been more than a match for the dolt we have running our country.

    •  Hmmm... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      At least it sounded like he takes time in the day to stay current on things other than his own narrow focused agenda

      Only to the extent that such things further his agenda.  I mean, what the hell does the number of Americans without health insurance have to do with Iran?  Ahmadinejad thinks he's going to give us advice on domestic policy?  OK, let him start by NOT advocating the destruction of another country, then maybe we'll listen to what he has to say.

      Don't be taken in by him.  He said a bunch of reasonable things because he knew he was playing to an American audience, and doing so would make him look favorable, both to Americans and (more imporantly for him) to the Arab world.  He's still a dangerous lunatic.

      As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17

      by gpm on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:58:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  GPM, I think that you are being jingositic... (0+ / 0-)

        Your perspective is that if a matter (like health insurance statisitics for USA) is not an Iranian matter then Mahmoud Ahmadinejad should just stfu about it.  On the other hand, if US leaders take interest in  Iran say for example the lack democracy or being subject to a brutal despotic leader then the US should have its nose in the middle of it.  Your comment is filled with a double standard USA supremacy flavor - the very kind that George Bush is the supreme advocate for. The only person taken in is you, by your apparent unwillingness to listen and take away information from another foreign leader.  Seems you are the one who is taken in by the Bush position and media's perspective on Iran, already.

        •  Well, that would be true if (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Brother Dave

          I had said anywhere that I think we should intervene in Iran's internal affairs.  The only statements I've made about Iran are their anti-Israel stance and their willingness to pursue nuclear weapon technology.  As far as I know, those are accepted as fact by all sides.  And I have not said that the US has any business changing that.

          Brother Dave, you saw the interview last night.  If there was any information whatsoever for me to take in, I must have been asleep, because it looked to me like it was just Wallace and Ahmadinejad comparing dick sizes.

          As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17

          by gpm on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:25:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I agree with you completely! (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            My only point is that Wallace wasted valuable opportunity to mine further information from Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.  Wallace was rude and it was his manner that interferred with gaining more from the interview.  I agree with you.

          •  No? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            You don't think the US (or anyone else for that matter) should take an interest in whether Iran acquires nuclear weaponry?  Yikes.

            "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

            by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:32:19 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Mmm, yeah ... I realized after I posted that (0+ / 0-)

              that I was being quite glib.  You're right, this is not an internal Iranian matter, and it's something we should be concerned about.  As far as the US being the world's cop ... well, no time to get into that right now, but I have some misgivings on that.

              But you're right, that was silly for me to say we shouldn't be concerned about the possibility of Iran building nuclear weapons.

              As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17

              by gpm on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:40:39 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Right, we agree (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                I don't think the US should be the world's cop.  But the United Nations should do whatever it can to prevent Iran from getting the bomb.  And we should work with the UN to help.

                "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

                by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:44:48 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think it was jingoistic (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          I don't think a president who throws political dissidents in jail, should be giving us (or any other democracy for that matter) advice on how we should run our country.

          "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

          by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:37:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  a little inflammatory rhetoric is ok, huh? (0+ / 0-)

      works for Bush, right?

    •  More in touch with reality than Bush? (0+ / 0-)

      Well admitedly its tough for someone to out delude Bush, but I think the Ahmy did the job.  He defended his position that the Holocaust is a myth last night by saying that no one can find out where it happened.  What?

      "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

      by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:35:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think you misunderstood this... (0+ / 0-)

        He was ASKING where it happened, to elicit the response "Germany".  To which he replied: "So why isn't Israel located in Germany, or in the US?  Why subject 1 million people to displacement from their homes who were not responsible for the holocaust?".  This is a pretty common sentiment in the mideast, by the way - not just from Ahmadinejad.  Many Arab leaders whom we support feel the same way.

        •  I see (0+ / 0-)

          That makes sense.  Yes I've heard this argument a lot from various talking heads.  Of course there is not a lot of reality to it as the Zionist movement and the British decision to support it predates the second world war by decades.

          It also seems a bit besides the point.  Isreal already exists.  Whether or not it was a good idea (and in retrospect it seems like a bad idea) the country is there and it has right to exist.

          But unfortunately these arguments do work on the Arab street.

          "Rick Santorum is Latin for Asshole."

          by tmendoza on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:37:06 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It's not beside the point to the extent (0+ / 0-)

            that the British/UN/US mandate still exists, in that they agreed to set up a Palestinian state (as well as a Kurdish state), and haven't lived up to that.  Rather, the US simply blindly supports Israel's policies - which provoke Arab reactions - and the US uses Israel as a military proxy.  We haven't been a fair partner at the negotiating table, and we accuse Palestinians of being "terrorists" while barely commenting when Israel destroys apartment buildings filled with civilians, destroys Palestinian infrastructure, or targets political leaders.  We also block any UN actions against Israel, so apparently we don't really believe in the "international community".  And it's not beside the point in that an injustice was commited, and serious injustices continue; I think that's what Ahmadinejad was trying to convey.

            It would almost be better if we sold F-16s to both sides rather than just one - then there would be negotiation.

    •  More than condescending. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      queen, Brother Dave
      Wallace was outrageous, condescending and dismissive in a way that was unprofessional and disrespectful of anyone, let alone a state's leader, let alone an elected leader.

      Where was the madman we've been led to expect? Ahmed was more relaxed, articulate and altogether human than anytime I've seen our own pitiful creation in a similar situation.

      Wallace was an ass and a shill. In spite of his we-are-good-guys-you-are-bad bias on his sleeve, he delivered a couple pitches that were right down the middle. Ahmed did not disappoint. When Ahmed spoke of the US invasion and takeover of Iraq, Mike came back with -- Saddam!!!! Ahmed calmly pointed out that the man's been gone for three years now. Nice pitch, Mike. When Mike asked about Iran allegedly supplying roadside bombs to Iraqi inurgents to kill (gasp!) Americans, Ahmed countered with the obvious question: Please explain what Americans are doing in Iraq (I guess Ahmed did't get the memo that said that Iraq is practically the 51st state since it's so close to us and all...).

      I saw an interview Mike did with an Iraqi business man three years ago. The man pointed out that the game of the Americans was to bomb Iraq to pieces and then have American contractors make a bundle on rebuilding it. That this and the oil were the motives here. In other words he nailed it perfectly. Mike was aghast and dismissive (yeah, really calm and objective). "How can you say such a thing?" The typical American bias in regard to this country's motives is absolutely and totally beyond belief.  

      And then 2/27/33 happened, and that changed everything.

      by Julian on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 10:37:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I did not see the interview (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sxwarren, adios
    but the last time I saw Mike Wallace on the tube, he was very forgetful, and seemed reliant on the interviewer's shared context to complete his sentences.

    yes, maybe even Mike Wallace grows old and doddered.

    it seems this was ratings-driven and not responsible journalism.

    I swore I heard a stem cell yell:'Blastocysterhood is powerful!"

    by Miss Devore on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:46:15 AM PDT

  •  Thanks for writing about this (7+ / 0-)

    We watched the interview last night and had the same reaction as you.  In talking about it this morning, I said to my husband that if any Iranian reporter had been as condescending and sneeringly rude to Bush as Wallace was to Ahmadinejad that the reporter would have been yanked out of the room, slammed on the next flight out and told not to come back.  It was quite the contrast with the following interview between Stephen Colbert and Morley Schaeffer (sp?).  Good to know that others saw what we did.  That was just plain ugly and inexcusable on Wallace's part.  

  •  Treating people like crap (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    3goldens, Brother Dave, gpm

    is one good way to get them pissed at you and refuse to engage in informative dialog. An elementary lesson that Wallace and Bush apparently haven't learned.

    Private life is all about managing pain. In business and government, this means externalizing and deferring costs whenever possible.

    by sxwarren on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 09:56:24 AM PDT

  •  Wallace Gave No Respect (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Julian, queen, 3goldens, Brother Dave, gpm

     Though some of the interview may have been "just Mike Wallace," I found the lack of respect appalling. Most American business people who deal with leaders and business people in other countries change their pushy, American ways and attempt to accommodate the customs of those they are visiting.  There are college business courses on how to "behave" when in other countries. So ... why couldn't Mike Wallace change his ways? Oh ... businesses want to make money and will do what they have to ... 60 minutes wants to make money and will do what they have to.  I suppose that appealing to the existing bigotry in the general US populace and the strong urges to "get even" ... the 60 minutes audience probably loved it.
     I would give a lot to see a media person actually stand up to George W and ask some of the same questions or make some of the same statements ... "Just answer the question, yes or no." ... without the drama and theatrics though.      
     And I couldn't help but think... how pious ... when Wallace made fun of the note regarding the Iranian President's jacket.  How much time and makeup do you think was spent on Wallace trying to get him to look okay?  

  •  I was embarrassed and appalled for my country (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Julian, queen, Brother Dave

    that Mike Wallace was so rude and disrespectful to a head of state, whether we like that state or not.  Seems symtomatic to me of our declining courtesy standards as is now dramatized by the thuggery of Bu$hCo.  Between this arrogant attitude and our foreign policy, no wonder the rest of the world now despises us.  I grew up on Walter Cronkite and HE sure would have never acted like that.  When did Americans get so damned rude?  I was raised in a civilized household and world and sure do miss it.

    •  If David Duke was our president (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      you would advocate being polite and reasonable with him?

      Ahmadinejad is a holocaust denier and a buffoon and deserves to be questioned agressively.  It's not like we'll ever see real questions being asked by the Iranian media.

      •  I agree with your sentiment but... (0+ / 0-)

        Our media is supposed to independent and not actig for the administration.  I am surprised that Wallace did not call him an Islamofascist.  Agressive is one thing but condescending and rude is annother.  It was counterproductive to getting at the information!  Wallace was a jerk this fact not to be expected.  Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was a jerk - a fact that is anticipated and confirmed by good unbiased interviewing.  The bias infused into this interview by Wallace auger to the Iranian point of view and not against it.  

  •  Usual m.o. (0+ / 0-)

    I saw Mike Wallace on Larry King in the last few months.  They showed clips of his interviews throughout the years.  His mannerisms and style seem pretty consistent.  However, I did note, that sometimes he would pause, during his interview with Larry King, and mentioned something about his memory.

  •  Wallace was upstageed at almost every minute (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brother Dave, gpm

    and as we all know, the editors cut a lot out, and interview subjects generally complain about it. If that was the BEST Wallace could do, one can only imagine how horribly the actual interview proceeded.
      Just one bon mot from the wallace interview was enough to show who's wit was sharper by half: Wallace lobs the softball: Do you have any hobbies?
                              A: I read . . .
    Which of course, is a direct slap at Bush.
    Wallace didn't pursue the point, to ask what the president actually read.
       Mike's ego, BTW, has the camera focusing too much on him, and not enough on the interview subject. The president got a zinger in about that, in some banter about appearance, saying that appearance is important, and he combs his hair. Guess he thought Wallace should do at least that much himself before turning the camera lights.

      The only point of the project was to get the president on the air, talking to the American people, to let them know that he at least wants to talk with the US--despite the fact that our alleged government won't speak with him. Thus, if his country is attacked, the iniatiators will be the ones liable under international law. This puts the US in the morally and legally embarassing position of not having exhausted every legal option before launching hostilities.
       As Sy Hersh reports in the New Yorker, Dick Cheney was gung-ho for the Israeli air strikes quite a while ago, and wanted it to go forward at the earliest opportunity. The military debacle in Lebanon for the IDF should provide one more piece of incontrovertible evidence of the error of that policy.
      The next question is: if Dick Cheney pushes for war in Iran, will he find that his generals would rather launch an attack against the neo-con republicans, rather than see their Armies wasted to no good purpose--and worse, face adjudication in the future for war crimes? Has democracy corroded so much that now we have to rely on generals to make the right choice for the country?

  •  What did you expect? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brother Dave

    This was a typical Mike Wallace interview. What exactly were you expecting? I didn't think it was awful, but it wasn't great either. My God the intelligent questions he COULD have asked!

    I guess I didn't hate it because I learned some things about about the Iranian president. For example, I had no idea he was a technocrat!

  •  very much so (0+ / 0-)

    I saw part of the interview, and Wallace was so patronizing and antagonistic I couldn't watch the whole thing.

    In a word? Cranky. Like he'd been kept up waaay past his bedtime.

  •  It's been a long, long time (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brother Dave, sistersilverwolf

    since Mike Wallace was a journalist.  He's been a TV Republican since the Reagan era, when he did fawning interviews with Nancy.  

    The actual investigative work on his stories is all done by others.  Mike is the star, never the story.

    "... Just so long as I'm the dictator." - GWB, 12/18/00

    by Bob Love on Mon Aug 14, 2006 at 11:21:36 AM PDT

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