Helmut Kohl and Panorama16 May 2003
Ex-Chancellor Helmut Kohl always had a, ah, 'special' relationship with journalists from the ARD network. He hated them, and they hated him back. So Dr. Kohl was not particularly cooperative when the ARD magazine Panorama wanted to ask him about his DM100,000+ consulting contract with the private broadcaster (now bankrupt) Leo Kirch. But the 'interview' could be a lesson to politicians everywhere in dealing with pesky reporters...
ARD Panorama: Herr Dr. Kohl, good day. Stuchlik, Panorama, one question. Why did you receive money from Mr. Kirch?
Dr. Helmut Kohl: I have absolutely no intention of giving you an interview.
Panorama: Why not?
Kohl: You are from Panorama?
Kohl: That means you have nothing to do with journalism.
Panorama: But why did you receive...?
Kohl: Oh, man, that's enough.
Panorama: For what services did you receive the money?
Kohl: That I look at your face, and that's enough for me.
Panorama: I ask once again: Why did you receive money from Mr. Kirch?
Kohl: I can tell you this. I am collecting money to finance an investigation of the liars and traitors of German unity, in connection with certain activities of the ARD.
Panorama: That means you are accusing us of betraying our country?
Kohl: Parts of the ARD and the activities of especially your program over the years. I wanted to tell you this, and you can broadcast it live. Of course I'm accusing some of you of treason, there's no other word for it.
Lesson learned: when in doubt, accuse the press of treason! I missed the broadcast, but laughed long, hard and loud when I heard it on the radio. Excerpt from Industrial Technology & Witchcraft.