Leaders, Spectators & Clowns: the UN’s General Assembly’s 64th session
Posted by worriedlebanese on 25/09/2009
The contrast between these four men is striking. One could easily say that in this world Assembly, they are “worlds apart”. On one hand you’ve got a world/worldly leader, on the other three buffoons with very distinct styles.
Obama knew very well who his audience was, and he spoke to them in his habitual clear and cultured style. He was here to convince the UN and world leaders that the Bush days are gone, a page was being turned and that multilateralism was to replace unilateralism. He spoke as a leader, summing his country’s policy change and telling his audience what it wanted to hear. He addressed many issues, took twice the time that was alloted to him, but everything he said was linked to a policy that he had already launched, and that he vowed to pursue (here is his speech).
Now let’s check out the three buffoons: the delusional megalomaniac buffoon, the possessed preacher buffoon and the dogmatic historian buffoon.
I’ve searched the web through and through, but found no transcription of Muammar Gaddafi’s text. The reason is simple. There was no text! The Libyan autocratic leader preferred to improvise. He brought several folders, papers and books with him, and flicked through them, giving solution to every single conflict that sprang to his mind. And instead of sticking to the 15 minutes given to him, he took a whole 90 minutes. So don’t expect coherence or clarity, it’s rants that you’re going to get.
Amadinejad’s speech on the other hand was very well constructed. It clearly defined the good guys and the bad guys. It also spoke lengthly of God… and to a lesser extent of Zionism. It hardly adressed the nuclear issue or other upsetting matters. It didn’t give much thought about the audience or the fact that Israel has been campaigning against him quite heavily accusing his country of genocidal intent. Autistic to the very end, he stuck to preaching, giving no consideration to the fact that his audience wasn’t particularly receptive to his message, and that he needed to be very convincing if he wanted to get his point through.
And then came Netanyahu! If you want a good summary of Israeli Hasbara (propaganda techniques called “explanation”), you can’t dream of a better lesson. Bibi’s speech will tell you everything about how to be self-righteous, how history is to be used against others, how rhetorical techniques could be effective and how certain references can help you sway an audience toward you.