On Friday of last week when everyone else was watching the Olympic Games this blog was one of the first to start reporting and analysing the South Ossetia Conflict. Over the next three days I pretty much reported events as they happened and, with all due modesty, I cut through the lies and misinformation that was spewing forth, particularly from the Georgian side.Let's take just one example to illustrate the point
. On Monday most of the world's media were reporting that Russian troops were flooding out of South Ossetia and into Georgia proper. They claimed that the cities of Gori and Senaki were occupied and went on to make the risible claim that the whole of Georgia had been cut in two. The Russians, they said, were going to drive on Tblisi and occupy the whole country.
There was only one slight problem with that thesis: it was pure bollocks, as readers of this blog knew at the time. Put bluntly, your friendly Exile got the story right, and most of the media just got it wrong.
How did I manage to get it right? Put simply I have never been much good at following the herd and its instincts. And I am pretty good at detecting old wank...
I gave up Saturday, Sunday and Monday to this conflict by spending long hours at the computer, reading and analysing the news is it came in from a plethora of sources. Monday was my birthday, but that was quickly forgotten about since so many hundreds of people were flooding into the blog and I felt that I owed all of them, all of you, the truth as I saw it.
All this has left me exhausted since I kept going with hardly any sleep on a diet of strong sweet tea and even stronger cigarettes. Only now am I starting to relax.
People, if you read this blog during that time then you came away with a far better understanding of events than did the readers of the mainstream press. The difference is that in spite of their errors, the hacks will continue to draw their fat wage packets and I will continue to see my car parked in the garden because the gear box is knackered and I am too skint to get it fixed.
Is my work worth a donation? I am not asking for much as I assume that a working class blog like this gets a readership that is probably as broke as its owner, but is a fiver too much to ask? Let's face it, that still works out cheaper than buying newspapers over the weekend and the coverage has been a damned site better, hasn't it?