What would happen if a few people weren’t dragging the rest of us down?

Saudi Blood Money Lowers Bar of Broadcast TV

Each year, the lights from the Twin Towers seem to fade and move further away. Yet I remember like it was yesterday when my neighbors left for work, and some never returned. It’s one of the reasons I was so offended when the new suits in the upper echelon of corporate America newly in charge of The CW Network picked up  Saudi Arabia-backed LIV Golf.

For those who have forgotten, of the 19 Al Qaeda terrorists who hijacked four U.S. commercial airliners on the morning of September 11, 2001, 15 were citizens of Saudi Arabia, and Osama bin Laden was a member of one of Saudi Arabia’s wealthiest families.

In the 22 years since the Saudis have seemingly not changed. They continue to butcher journalists (Jamal Khashoggi), torture women (Loujain al-Hathloul), and murder migrants at their borders per Human Rights Watch and many others.
Jamal Khashoggi was butchered in Turkey
The Executives who pulled the trigger on this deal at the CW may have conveniently forgotten history or pretended the latest atrocities were just regular “geopolitics” rather than moral issues.
But I believe the money from their golf tournaments will always be tinged with blood. Some things are sacred and should not be for sale. I know there’s another side to this argument. I’ve heard it many times. But I still believe the families of 9/11 victims and first responders deserve better. We buy Saudi oil because it’s quote / unquote “necessary,” but is their golf really “necessary?” Is either?
Loujain al-Hathloul had the audacity to drive a vehicle.

Surely a country can find better sources of energy and a TV network can find a better way to make money than getting into bed with murderous regimes? This wound is still healing. I’m not sure this golf tournament will ever be looked at as anything but morality for sale to the highest bidder. Broadcast TV should do better.

POST SCRIPT: Full disclosure, I have been pitched a trip to Saudi Arabia to film an episode of Raw Travel. I declined, of course. There was no way I could in good conscience glibly film a fawning segment about a destination like Saudi Arabia which is what would be expected if they wined, dined, and paid a hefty “production fee” in exchange for my trip there.

And while I’ve taken some risks by “unofficially” filming in unfriendly journalism and human rights territory (Cuba, China, Vietnam, Haiti, etc.) and more recently a war zone, there was no way I would risk jail, torture, or worse at the hands of a government that chopped up former U.S. based journalist, Jamal Khashoggi so deceptively and brutally. Apparently, the CW felt no such hesitation.

A foggy, cloudy evening on 9/11/23 and enough blood money fades the lights emanating from the former Twin Towers.




Official blog of Robert G. Rose. Opinions are my own. Whose else would they be?

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Don’t Drag Me Down is the personal blog of Robert G. Rose, a U.S. based media veteran and entrepreneur who writes about wrongs, slights, incompetence, corporate greed and more, he observes in his everyday life.

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