Sunday, June 19, 2005


Simply Apolling...

I have long been cynical about online polls hosted by major news websites. More often than not, these serve to do little more than drive more traffic to a site, particularly when it's on a hot topic (cough...Israeli/Arab conflict) and both sides start emailing their friends and ballot stuffing.

Currently, there is a large debate in Australia concerning freed hostage Douglas Wood who was recovered from Iraqi captors a few days ago. The debate largely surrounds leader of the Australian Muslim Community, Sheik Alhilaly who has claimed partial responsibility for Wood's discovery. This is at odds with other accounts, including one suggesting the Iraqi soldiers stumbled across Wood by accident rather than after a tipoff. Tim Blair has plenty more.

Meanwhile, Australian newspaper The Age, who really should know better, apparently can't make up its mind in the absence of facts from the captors, captive and various governments. Therefore....

You decide, they'll report.

Update: Incidentally, of the poll options The Age provides as to who was most helpful in Wood's release, "America" was conspicuous by its absence. This is interesting given that Douglas Wood himself was reported in The Australian as saying:
he was "proof positive" that the policy of having US troops training Iraqis was successful, "because it was Iraqis that got me out."
You have got to admire a man who uses the word "Arsehole" (Aussie spelling) in a press conference!

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