Friday, September 14, 2007

Coverage Of President Bush's Speech

All of the major television networks aired President Bush's address on the Iraq War on Thursday night. Many of those channels had extended coverage and analysis, others rushed back to regularly scheduled programing and advertising. This morning major newspapers such as the New York Times and Washington Post offer stories and analysis as does Morning Edition on NPR.

The best story on Mr. Bush's speech itself also provides an intriguing and telling look at the coverage of the speech on television last night. This piece of journalism won't be found on the front page, nor even in the news section. If you want to know about the speech and how it was covered turn to the style section of the Washington Post and read TV Critic Tom Shales' excellent article.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

A Tale Of Two Headlines

The headlines for the Washington Post and the New York Times editions of Tuesday, September 11, 2007 are striking in their contrast and serve to demonstrate the divide in quality reporting that now exists between two of the nation's leading daily papers.

The Washington Post
: Petraeus Backs Initial Pullout - General Praises Progress, Warns Against 'Rushing to Failure'

The New York Times
: Petraeus Warns Against Quick Pullback in Iraq

The article lead for the Post is "Plan Would Reverse Troop 'Surge' in Iraq By Next Summer", in the Times "Partisan Tensions and Protests at the Hearing"

At a glance the Washington Post would have its readers believe that General Petraeus has announced a new reduction in in the number of American soldiers in Iraq. Conversely the New York Times gives its readers a much more accurate preview of the proceedings in which Mr. Petraeus endorsed the status quo.

The Times provides a snippet of reporting in its headline while the Post merely offers cheerleading.

Monday, September 10, 2007

John Bolten Can't Handle The Truth

In an interview with the BBC's World Service World Update this morning former US Ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton suggested that Europeans do not appreciate the danger of terrorism.

Mr. Bolton was in the studio to respond to a BBC report based on interviews with Iraqis as well as recent polls conducted in Iraq which show that the so-called surge is a failure. Among other far fetched statements Mr. Bolten said:

I don't think Europe has yet fully appreciated the threat we all face from international terrorism. (6:57)
Perhaps Mr. Bolton, despite his service in the State Department, has not heard of the Irish Republican Army and the troubles in Northern Ireland, or ETA and the Basque separatist movement in Spain and France. Perhaps he missed the news coverage concerning the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 in Lockerbie and the killing of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich. More recently it is possible that Mr. Bolton was unaware of the bombings in London on July 7, 2005 or those in Madrid on March 11, 2004. The list of other less well known, at least to Americans, terrorist attacks against Europeans is literally to long to recreate here. For more on Europe's long and deadly history of terror please see these links:

France, England, Spain, The Netherlands, Sweden, Italy, Germany

Mr. Bolton's suggestion that Europe fails to appreciate the threat posed by terrorism is ludicrous in its clear lack of understanding of or appreciation for the history of international terrorism in Europe as well as throughout the world.

While the host of World Update, Dan Damon, rather surprisingly let Mr. Bolton's comment on Europe's relationship with terrorism slide he conducted a much more vigorous interview than any you are likely to hear from an American journalist today.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Bush Lawlessness Grows - Administration Ramps Up Efforts To Surpress Anti-War / Impeachment March

Updated Below

On Thursday September 6 US Park Police disrupted a press conference being held in Lafayette Park by organizers of an Anti-War / Impeachment march planned for September 15 to coincide with General Petraeus' testimony on Capitol Hill.

According to AFP, the only news source to report on the incident, mounted Park Police officers charged the gathering of approximately 20 reporters and the five activists who were answering questions.

As of this writing no American media outlets had picked up the story, according to Google and Yahoo news searches the Times of India is the only publication to pick up the story. That the American media would so completely ignore this story of violent suppression reminiscent of the Civil-Rights and Vietnam War protests is a devastating example of the complacency and failure that defines journalism in America today.

Video of the incident, posted to YouTube can be seen here.


Apparently the Washington Post did cover this incident, on page three of the Metro section in Friday's paper.

Raw Story has coverage from Friday.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

President Bush On Iraq "We're Kicking Ass"

Apparently the American people are not the only ones being lied to by Mr. Bush. Upon his arrival in Australia Mr. Bush was greeted by that nation's Deputy Prime Minister, Mark Vaile, who inquired as to the situation in Iraq. "We're kicking ass" was Mr. Bush's response according to the Melbourne newspaper The Age.

Despite all available evidence to the contrary Mr. Bush insists that the war in Iraq is going well, his disconnect from reality is stunning, ever the more so in an elected leader who by all rights should be held accountable for the damage he has done.

The American media must do its job and begin to question Mr. Bush's unsupported and blatantly false assertions.

Keith Olbermann Continues To Tell The Truth

Keith Olbermann, of MSNBC, remains practically the sole member of the main stream media, and certainly the only television commentator, willing to describe President Bush's false rhetoric bluntly and explain to the American people that they are being lied to.

In an impassioned "Special Comment" yesterday evening, Mr. Olbermann confronted Mr. Bush on his misleading and disingenuous trip to an American air base in Iraq, exposed Mr. Bush's latest false statements, and dissected his current stratagem for Iraq as tellingly revealed in a new book by Robert Draper.

If more of the American, and particularly the beltway press corps would even simply ask the fundamental questions that underlie Mr. Olbermann's journalism and editorializing so much of the damage wrought by the current administration could have been forestalled.

Watch Mr. Olbermann here (courtesy of Crooks and Liars)