February 27, 2005
— Ace Great article from Prospect Magazine excerpted by Normblog:
January 30th turned out to be a better day for Iraqis than it was for reporters.
The failure of "hotel journalism" might be forgivable if it were truly about prudence or even laziness. But there has been something wilful about the bad reporting of this story. It is weirdly personal: Iraq must fail. It is in fact the press that failed, on a scale for which I cannot think of a precedent. Will the big media outlets demand the same accountability of themselves that they demand of everyone else? They should, for the success of these elections was not so surprising to those who dug below the surface of Iraq.
Thanks to JimW for tipping me to the story; more thoughts at Instapundit.
An Oldie But A Baddie: One of the clearest admissions of leftie reporters rooting for our enemies came from Gary Kamiya, an executive editor at Salon.com, writing shortly after the fall of Baghdad:
I have a confession to make. I have at times, as the war unfolded, secretly wished for things to go wrong. Wished for the Arab world to rise up in rage. Wished for all the things we feared would happen.
I'm not alone more casualties would have been a preferred alternative to the larger moral negative of a victory.... Wishing for things to go wrong is the logical corollary of the postulate that the better things go for Bush, the worse they will go for America and the rest of the world.
When this hateful confession appeared, letters poured in from Salon readers congratulating Kamiya on his bravery and honesty, and admitting, too, that others had shared the same hopes for American failure.
Rooting for more casulaties? For the Arab world to "rise up"?
Can it be doubed that Kamiya is quite right that he is "not alone" in these wishes, and that this hope for American deaths and humiliation permeates much of the media's reporting on Iraq and Afghanistan (and Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo)?
He wasn't alone, as The Nation proved:
Or take Jonathan Schell, writing in the Sept. 22 issue of the Nation: "[Democratic Senator Joe] Biden says we must win the war. This is precisely wrong. The United States must learn to lose this war a harder task, in many ways, than winning, for it requires admitting mistakes and relinquishing attractive fantasies. This is the true moral mission of our time."
Conservatives are sometimes criticized, fairly I think, for wanting things to go right and letting that hope color their analyses of the situations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Europe, and the world at large.
But, as Kamiya "bravely" admitted, there are others who have quite the opposite hopes and desires. And they don't all work for Al Jazeera. (Or, let us say, they don't draw a paycheck from Al Jazeera.)
Letting hopes for American victory cloud a dispassionate analysis of the facts is dangerous.
Posted by: Some Guy at February 27, 2005 10:41 AM (ODlEV)
I don't know what's sadder: Putin's mirror-imaging, or the fact that Bush *could* have fired Dan Rather and gotten away with it.
Dave at Garfield Ridge
Posted by: Dave at Garfield Ridge at February 27, 2005 11:03 AM (mrpxK)
Posted by: The Old coot at February 27, 2005 11:08 AM (koWKi)
Next they'll tell us Pamela Anderson's boobs are fake.
Posted by: TallDave at February 27, 2005 11:42 AM (H8Wgl)
Posted by: Alec Rawls at February 27, 2005 12:02 PM (5LqjJ)
Posted by: Iblis at February 27, 2005 12:59 PM (9221z)
Posted by: Um Yeah at February 27, 2005 01:31 PM (7XTy8)
The other day, while taking a break by the Al-Hamra Hotel pool, fringed with the usual cast of tattooed defence contractors, I was accosted by an American magazine journalist of serious accomplishment and impeccable liberal credentials.
She had been disturbed by my argument that Iraqis were better off than they had been under Saddam and I was now — there was no choice about this — going to have to justify my bizarre and dangerous views. I’ll spare you most of the details because you know the script — no WMD, no ‘imminent threat’ (though the point was to deal with Saddam before such a threat could emerge), a diversion from the hunt for bin Laden, enraging the Arab world. Etcetera.
But then she came to the point. Not only had she ‘known’ the Iraq war would fail but she considered it essential that it did so because this would ensure that the ‘evil’ George W. Bush would no longer be running her country. Her editors back on the East Coast were giggling, she said, over what a disaster Iraq had turned out to be. ‘Lots of us talk about how awful it would be if this worked out.’ Startled by her candour, I asked whether thousands more dead Iraqis would be a good thing.
She nodded and mumbled something about Bush needing to go. By this logic, I ventured, another September 11 on, say, September 11 would be perfect for pushing up John Kerry’s poll numbers. ‘Well, that’s different — that would be Americans,’ she said, haltingly. ‘I guess I’m a bit of an isolationist.’ That’s one way of putting it.
The moral degeneracy of these sentiments didn’t really hit me until later when I dined at the home of Abu Salah, a father of six who took over as the Daily Telegraph’s chief driver in Baghdad when his predecessor was killed a year ago.
Posted by: Moonbat_One at February 27, 2005 01:38 PM (p2G9i)
Posted by: pbswatcher at February 27, 2005 07:24 PM (pHuBV)
Posted by: 72VIRGINS at February 28, 2005 06:28 AM (dhRpo)
Posted by: 72VIRGINS at February 28, 2005 07:08 AM (dhRpo)
Who? When? I can't think of a single example of what you're talking about.
Posted by: Joshua Chamberlain at February 28, 2005 09:25 AM (kVvQ+)
Go back and read the post. There was no period after 'right'. Why are you taking that phrase out of context? Are you a troll?
Posted by: BrewFan at February 28, 2005 09:45 AM (Byr3j)
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