Posted in Gunting Dalam Lipatan

A national agency that’s magic!

Abracadabra! National news agency Bernama pulled out the ‘sorry’ word from its magician’s hat and plonked it into the Isma-Marina story.

Filing the wire story on Marina Mahathir’s lawsuit settlement today, Bernama said:

“Isma deputy president Aminuddin Yahaya when reading out the terms of regret said that Isma was sorry if the distributed article and pamphlets had caused any problems or given negative impact and wrong perception of Marina as a liberal and anti-Islam.”

Isma on the other hand says, ‘Kes saman fitnah Marina selesai, tiada permohonan maaf direkod’ – i.e. how the relevant article headline was framed in Ismaweb.

Below is the statement read out by Aminuddin in front of the judge. It does not contain the words “pohon/mohon maaf”.

Click to enlarge

Isma Lampiran A

“In tears” … laying it thick and the Dapsters lapping it up

The Bernama article is ‘Comango: Marina’s suit against Isma settled‘.

Sourcing from Bernama, FMT has the headline ‘Marina in tears after Isma apologises for article’ and the standfirst  saying, “Both parties agree to settle case after Isma deputy president apologises in court.”

FMT twice emphasized “apologises” in the headline and standfirst alone. It also shoveled heaps of melodrama with the first three words in its headline saying “Marina in tears”.

When Bernama should have gone to town with Saifuddin’s “sorry”, it didn’t

FMT had credited Bernama with a story byline. Hence a part of the responsibility for how the FMT extrapolation turned out, i.e. “Marina in tears”, “Isma apologises (repeatedly)”, must be borne by the national news agency as the source material.

While Bernama had inserted a non-existent sorry into the Marina vs Isma report, the national news agency on the other neglected to use the word ‘sorry’ in the headline of its Khalid Ibrahim vs Saifuddin Nasution story – when it really should have.

The Khalid court case would have been best titled ‘Saifuddin Nasution apologises for defaming Khalid Ibrahim’. In this instance particularly, when Bernama really should have used the ‘sorry’ word prominently, it did not.

Instead the Bernama copy, with its headline ‘Abdul Khalid’s suit against Saifuddin Nasution settled‘ is too non-committal. Such a bland headline fails to convey the political import (importance and impact) of the court judgment with regard to the unconscionable Kajang Move or in the evangelista terminology – “oooooh, Pakatan is so evil and wicked”.

Perception-wise, the judgment on the Khalid case is actually very advantageous and favourable to BN.

But the opposition sneakily spun it into “mutual apology” and thus blunted with great success any political benefits that the BN would have expected to gain in the court of public opinion over the affirmation of Khalid’s innocence, and Saifuddin-and-PKR’s guilt as pemfitnah tegar.

Compare the contrived emotionalism of the oppo press coverage on Marina – she’s reduced to tears and feels vindicated by the “apology” (sic) she got from Isma for allegedly “defaming” her.

It is more apt that the vindication of Khalid – a victim of the vilest fitnah by the oppo politicians – be highlighted most pointedly. But Bernama failed to do that.

Not only did the government media make nothing of it, Bernama even downplayed Khalid’s victory in court. PKR’s guilt is watered down in the Bernama report which is really too brief to explain the many, many charges of libel laid at the party’s door.

If this is the comparative approach that’s being adopted by media belonging to both sides of the political divide, then you can easily predict what will happen.

It’s clear that the pro-oppo media are fighting hard for a regime change.

It equally clear that the media belonging to the government and ruling parties are washing their hands like Pontius Pilate while some are ‘scissors’ing and sabotaging, and yet others secretly hoping too that the regime will topple.


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13 thoughts on “A national agency that’s magic!


    1. Pihak ISMA telah menolak mentah-mentah permohonan maaf yang dituntut oleh Marina sejak awal proses mediasi yang diatur oleh mahkamah. Ini kerana ISMA konsisten, sedari awal, tidak setuju dengan tuduhan Marina dalam samannya bahawa ISMA telah menfitnahnya. Sehubungan itu, deraf awal yang disediakan oleh peguam Marina (seperti Lampiran 1 di bawah) telah dipinda hampir keseluruhannya, antara lain dengan menggugurkan perkataan “PERMOHONAN MAAF” pada tajuk deraf tersebut, serta perkara-perkara yang berkaitan dengannya. Hal ini selari dengan hujah balas daripada pihak ISMA dalam menjawab saman fitnah Marina jika perbicaraan diadakan.

    2. ISMA hanya menyatakan kekesalan (seperti Lampiran 2) sekiranya artikel dan risalah berkenaan (secara tidak langsung dan tanpa niat telah): 
    a. Menyebabkan kepayahan dan kesan buruk
    b. Memberikan gambaran yang salah berkenaan Marina

    3. Marina juga menuntut daripada ISMA dalam mediasi ini agar menanggung kos guamannya. Perkara ini telah ditolak oleh pihak ISMA mentah-mentah juga kerana pihak ISMA tiada melakukan sebarang kesalahan.

    4. Kita telah menjangkakan laporan media yang berat sebelah, memandangkan mereka sedari awal telah mengerumuni Marina dan tidak sepatah pun kenyataan diambil daripada ISMA. Situasi ini amat mudah difahami bahawa sentimen media akan memihak kepada Marina. Tambahan pula deraf awal yang disediakan peguam Marina (Lampiran 1) telah diedar kepada wartawan lebih awal sebelum sesi mediasi bermula. Tidak dapat dipastikan apakah faktor sebenar yang menyebabkan laporan media begitu memihak kepada Marina, adakah kerana sentimen? Atau kerana gopoh? Atau masalah wartawan yang gagal memahami terma persetujuan dengan baik.

    5. Kegagalan pihak wartawan melaporkan berita sebenar dan menyampaikan fakta yang betul adalah amat dikesali dan dikira suatu tindakan yang tidak beretika.

    Ketua Penerangan Isma

  2. That letter from Isma hits just the right note. This is what I thought when I read it.

  3. point no5 start off with “Kami menyatakan kekesalan sekiranya….”. Doesn’t that say they express regret….isma slandered Marina, and isma did pen it out, and yet they are not sorry about their action….and isma goes out blaring that they did not apologize….AND some people look up to this institution……this sounds sick

    1. Kekesalan is correctly translated as “regret” in the Bernama copy. But para (5) doesn’t translate into “sorry” if the word “maaf” is missing.

      Plus don’t forget that Isma has not been required to pay compensation nor costs. So Marina did not get the victory that she wanted.

      1. ‘Kekesalan is correctly translated as “regret” in the Bernama copy. ‘

        Tu la Helen, susah kalau cakap dengan puak2 yang TAK FAHAM BAHASA! Kecik2 orang suruh belajar BM tak nak, bile besar dah menyusahkan orang. Ish2

        1. looks like you are not getting the gist of my rant….i am emphasizing on the credibility of the organisation…..they knew they slandered and wronged, and they choose not to apologize, even though they regretted with the actions made…and these are supposedly to be educated and religious people……it’s a sham org…..bunch of munafiqs

            1. BM saya ok. Tapi u kena baiki BI you. Dan saya tidak tau mcm mana nak bodohkan diri untuk berkomunikasi dgn korang

          1. Isma has learned from the likes of MI, MKini and the opposition on how to express regrets without really regretting and how to apologise without really apologising and for that I salute them.

  4. Didn’t know Marina can shed tears in a case like this. She is after Sisters In Islam and made of sterner stuff.

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