Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Seriously now, who is this guy?

So, Safire's replacement has a great idea: Lets ignore terrorist bombings. I guess if we ignore them, then they aren't really happening, right? Is this guy kidding? Here's a gem: "I'm not advocating official censorship". So I guess the unofficial kind will just have to do.

Tierney claims that the suicide bombings are taking away from the reporters precious time to cover what he considers to be real news. Isn't someone blowing himself up and tens of people around him not real news? Or is it just because it is happening in Iraq, and involving mostly Iraqis that it does not matter? I seriously dare him to look into an Israeli Mother's eyes and tell her "I really don't think that a suicide bombing in an ice-cream shop in Tel Aviv should be reported." Of course, Israel is nowhere mentioned in this report, so he is clearly only taking about the poor buggers who die waiting in line to join the Iraqi police force because unemployment is so bad that they are willing to do anything (including risking their lives) to feed their families. In Arabic we have a super caustic expression, "ma lahum rub?", which translates to "do they not have a god?" It means, roughly, are they not human beings, or are they like ants, their pain and misery is somewhat irrelevant in the larger scheme of things?

The purpose of the media is to report the events in the order of importance. 50 killed and over 200 injured is far more important of an event than phonelines finally reaching some village in Al Anbar. Oh, maybe they shouldn't report the all-out offensive going on in Al Anbar because if too many American casualties (which is likely) would just be a bummer in the news cycle. Though I wasn't here, everyone tells me that in 1990 the Iraqi invasion absolutely invaded American TV stations, who had round the clock reporting. This was an event that initially had nothing to do with Americans, but they were absolutely bombarded by it. Now, that America has actually invaded a country, we barely hear anything nor see any footage of Iraq. What's shocking about sitting through About Baghdad is that I realized that we don't really get to see what Iraq looks like at all. I argue that, in fact, Tierney's objection is totally without merit. We simply do not see enough footage of what is going on over there. Perhaps if we did, Americans would begin to understand what is really going on, and how hard it really is, instead of this fuzzy smokescreen where all we know is that things are somehow both "sorta going badly" and "a massive improvement". Just compare what the BBC is doing, they are reporting from the ground constantly, and guess what? The brits didn't pull out, nor did they kill Blair politically, but they sure gave them a piece of their mind before voting him back into office. Why can't the American leadership handle the same pressure? Are these guys leaders or moody adolescents with delicate feelings?


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October 28, 2005 8:32 AM  

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