A call was placed to me on Wednesday last week where I was asked to give my opinion on self-defence as alleged by Israel in it's current offensive against Gaza. I would not want to elaborate on my answer here as I don't think it merit a discussion. Enough for me to make a stand in other ways at other platform.
What I want to elaborate was how the interview was conducted in a simple manner and took just 10 minutes of my time. As I was on my way out from my office and was trying to finish off my work for the day, I was also the one who tried to cut it as short as possible.
My friend called me earlier in the morning of the same day telling me that a reporter was looking for a lawyer to be interviewed and I actually decline at first as I am not really a trial lawyer. I asked him to call up a mutual friend who is a lecturer and is very well known for his involvement with Malaysia initiative on eradicating war. My friend said they need a lawyer and a lecturer. As they were desperate for any lawyer and the standings of the newspaper was more of the tabloid kind than a 'real' newspaper, my friend convinced me and I relented. I promised myself to look-up the word self defence later. I forgotten totally about it when the call finally came at 3pm.
The reporter explained that she just need me to answer a few question through the phone. I was relieved as I didn't really have time to see anyone that day. She asked me the question I was expecting and I gave her a non-satisfactory answer. She asked me elaborate further. She was still not satisfied with my second answer. I asked her how can I elaborate on something which is very much different from each other? A war and a self-defence in a criminal context. So, I gave an example. Finally, I made a breakthrough and she was satisfied. She asked me my full name and age. She said she will use the word 'legal practitioner' to describe my profession.
That was how I know how those short statements in newspaper comes into being. All this while, I thought an interview must be through a face to face meeting and a tape recorder being placed on the table. Maybe in this age where eveything is fast paced not all interviews can be done as such. Even Ministers sometimes can only have time for phone interview than a full one.