The Hitchens Galloway Debate

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Art

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A very interesting debate covering most issues raised on this forum in relation to the Irag war.
Two years after the invasion of Iraq, British MP George Galloway and journalist Christopher Hitchens will debate the causes and consequences of the Iraq war at Baruch College in New York City.
Moderated by Amy Goodman.

George Galloway is Respect party MP for Bethnal Green and Bow in East London. He recently electrified the United States with his appearance at the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations on May 17, when
he turned the proceedings into a condemnation of the war in Iraq. CNN's Wolf Blitzer described Galloway's speech in the Senate as "a blistering attack on U.S. senators rarely heard" in Washington. His new book, out in September, is "Mr. Galloway Goes to Washington" (The New Press).
http://print.indymedia.org/news/2005/09/1947.php

You can listen to the full debate here, http://kpftx.org/#galloway

Here's an excerpt of their exchange Our coverage begins with Christopher Hitchens' condemnation of George Galloway's Senate testimony.

CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS: I believe it is a disgrace that a member of the British House of Commons should go before the United States Senate Subcommittee, and not testify, but decline to testify, and to insult all those who try to ask him questions with the most vile and cheap gutter snipe abuse, I think that's a disgrace.

(sound of cheering and clapping)

It is not just a disgrace, it is a crime that Mr Gadafi has profited from the theft of money from the Iraqi oil for food program, has told continuous lies about his profiteering from it and the foul associates that he made at a time when Iraqi children were dying and 11 billion from this program – 11 billion – went to the murderer and criminal and sadist and fanatic Saddam Hussein.

How can anyone who's a business partner of this regime show their face at a city like this and not content with it, not content with it!
GEORGE GALLOWAY: But ah, I want to thank Mr Hitchens for the brave stand that he made against the war on Iraq in 1991. What you are… what you have witnessed since is something unique in natural history, the first ever metamorphosis from a butterfly back into a slug.

(sound of cheering and clapping)

And I mention slug purposely, because the one thing a slug does leave behind it is a trail of slime.

Now, I was brought up by my father on the principle never to wrestle with a chimney sweep, because whatever you do you can't come out clean.

But you, Mr Hitchens are no chimney sweep. That's not coal dust in which you are covered, you are covered in the stuff you like to smear onto others, not just me with your Gobellian leaflets full of selective quotation, half-truth, mistruth and downright untruth, and the comments you made in your last two minutes of this speech.

People like Mr Hitchens are ready to fight to the last drop of other people's blood, and it's utterly contemptible, utterly and completely contemptible.

MARK COLVIN: The British MP, George Galloway and a section of his debate held just a few hours ago with the Commentator, Christopher Hitchens.
 

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  • #2
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Haven't heard it yet, but it reads like fun.

Who, in your opinion, won the debate?

I suspect Galloway. Because he's Galloway and the other guy's Hitchens.
 
  • #3
Americans are too isolated from world opinion, in large part due to our controlled media. It's good to see a program like that, and I wish there were more.
 
  • #4
Art
TRCSF said:
Haven't heard it yet, but it reads like fun.

Who, in your opinion, won the debate?

I suspect Galloway. Because he's Galloway and the other guy's Hitchens.
I agree, Galloway won handily despite what seemed a favourable audience for Hitchins.

Hitchens is not a very good public speaker whereas Galloway is excellent also Hitchens arguments are seriously undermined by the fact he has done a major U turn from his anti-war stance in 1991 which Galloway constantly reminded him of which threw Hitchens onto the back foot trying to defend his earlier stance whilst supporting his conversion. In return Hitchens tried weakly and hence unsuccessfully to attack Galloway on the oil for food scandal.

This is the first of a series of debates Galloway will be taking part in during this tour of the US and it will be interesting to see how he performs against a US opponent with good oratorial skills and a more consistant track record.
 
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  • #5
Art
An excerpt from the Times Online
Galloway and Hitchens slug it out
From James Bone in New York

GEORGE GALLOWAY, the anti-Iraq war Respect Party MP for Bethnal Green, is guilty of “sinister piffle”. On the other hand, Christopher Hitchens, the pro-intervention polemicist who writes a column for Vanity Fair, practises “Goebbellian tricks”.
The two rivals in the raging row over Iraq engaged in an intellectual prize fight in New York on Wednesday night. Before a jeering crowd of more than 1,000 people in a college auditorium, the two master rhetoricians — once allies on the Left — hurled invective at each other for almost two hours.

A scruffy, sweating Mr Hitchens accused Mr Galloway of being an apologist for dictators, fresh from Damascus, where he had praised the 145 attacks a day by Iraqi insurgents on coalition troops. “The man’s hunt for a tyrannical fatherland never ends,” he said. “The Soviet Union let him down; Albania’s gone; the Red Army’s out of Afghanistan; Saddam’s been overthrown . . . But on to the next, in Damascus.”

Mr Galloway, tanned and looking worthy of his “Gorgeous George” nickname in a well-pressed beige suit, denounced Mr Hitchens as an ex-Trotskyist stooge for a reactionary government in Washington bent on dominating the Iraqi people. “People like Mr Hitchens are willing to fight to the last drop of other people’s blood,” he said to wild applause. “How I wish he would put on a tin hat and pick up a gun and go and fight himself.”
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,3-1782348,00.html
 
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