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Sudan and the deception of Arab media

Abdullah bin Bijad al-Otaibi

Published: Updated:

The recent events in Sudan have been a hot topic these days, and Arab political media outlets are undoubtedly coming under the spotlight. The Arab media’s treatment of the Sudan events in 2021 brings to mind its worst stages and misleading roles during the so-called Arab Spring in 2011. Observers of most Arab broadcast, visual, and print media coverage find the same terms and inciting rhetoric that lacks objectivity and turns news into instigation. Ten years ago, Obama was heralding the demise of Arab regimes and backing the Muslim Brotherhood’s arrival to power. Major Arab media outlets jumped on the wagon. When Obama attacked the military, so did the Brotherhood, so did those media outlets. Some broadcasters, producers, journalists, and writers vehemently and unconsciously reiterated their skepticism in the military and aligned with the Brotherhood’s rhetoric and their right to rule.

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Today, ten years later, history is repeating itself in Sudan this time with the same language and performance. Some even show an unjustified enthusiasm, with their motivated body language and inciting statements and their boycott of any dissident opinion that does not denounce what is happening, as if these outlets are partners in all that is happening instead of professional institutions that convey information.

Egypt would have gone out of the window if not for the historical and firm position of Saudi Arabia and the UAE, which backed the Egyptian Army and people in excluding the Brotherhood, restoring the Egyptian state, and refusing foreign interference. Some of these media outlets carried out major reforms and returned to their moderate, professional approach, supporting efforts to rescue Egypt and bring it back to the Arab family.

If we go back to the events that took place in Sudan a few years ago, we remember that the Army, security services, and the military were the ones who saved Sudan from Omar al-Bashir’s three-decade rule, not civilian forces and currents. That is a fact, and what happened against al-Bashir was an “uprising” that was supported by all civilian forces and Arab states, and its outcome was recognized internationally. The Sovereign Council led by Abdel Fattah al-Burhan was established, and the Council still stands and performs its assigned and recognized tasks.

Al-Burhan chose to appoint Abdullah Hamdok as prime minister, and Hamdok took the oath of office before him. Now, al-Burhan saw that Hamdok could not achieve the mission assigned to him and decided to appoint someone else in his stead, which is normal and does not warrant any of this fabricated fuss in the media. Political legitimacy in Sudan belongs to the Sovereign Council and not to any other person, regardless of their excellency or success. As such, the Sovereign Council continues to carry out its duties and safeguard Sudan’s unity, sovereignty, independence, and security, while Hamdok contacts the US State Secretary and communicates with the world from his home.

These are cold facts that need no explanation. These are facts that expose this unjustified and imbalanced Arab media hubbub. These media establishments’ lack of concern with the fate, security, development, and success of an entire people is a historical and humanitarian crime. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia and the UAE support stability, dialogue, and pacification and back the government and people of Sudan and all the achievements that the country has reached. Just like they saved many Arab states during the Arab Spring, the Kingdom and the UAE continue to play the same role today.

The facts are clear and logical, and a realistic, reasonable approach to dealing with these facts is easy. There is no necessity for this continued and intensified media incitement. Respectable media institutions have no excuse for drifting toward trends launched by Western leftist media without any regard for professional standards that could prevent blind alignment with those who are not concerned with Arab states and peoples. The association between the discourse of some Arab media and the rhetoric of the Muslim Brotherhood truly arouses suspicion. Are these media outlets really that incapable of seeing things for what they are? Are they obligated to have such inciting stances in such a remarkable way?

Eventually, despite the rocky path, professionalism will return, as happened in the past.

This article was originally published in, and translated from, Emirati news outlet Al-Ittihad.

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Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.