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February 04, 2005


A Fish

Ouch. So are they trying to Rather him? Sorry its late here.


These people really need to get out more.

Josh Narins

The right also studiously avoids some topics.

None of the rightie bloggers covered the Mark Thatcher greedy/coupmonger story.

LGF, Instie, NRO's Corner...
NewsMax, WorldNetDaily, FreeRepublic...

FreeRepublic covered it a tiny bit, but even then, lots of "mark's probably innocent, mugabe is evil" meme.

Robin Burk

Well, I'm one of the bloggers who posted an entry when this story first began circulating: http://www.windsofchange.net/archives/006248.php (apologies for not embedding the link, but when I tried it blew up the comment script). I also have a long comment over at Jay Rosen's Pressthink on this issue.

I don't consider myself to be on the Right -- in fact, I've been a registered Democrat for 30 years. So while I understand your rhetoric re: "blogstorm warfare tactics" Rebecca, you miss an important dynamic if you think that all of us who are blogging this story are in the Hugh Hewitt et al camp.

I have two concerns re: Jordan's reported behavior. First, I am deeply concerned about what seems to me to be increasingly shallow and shoddy reporting in the last decade or so, exacerbated by apparent bias on the part of many reporters and news executives. We need credible, fact-based journalism and news analysis that is rigorous and diverse if we are to thrive politically. I go back to before Watergate. I've watched the culture wars for a long time now and I've watched the growth of an unhealthy arrogance on the part of many in the media, even as the quality of their work declined. Not a Good Thing, you know?? The consolidation of corporate ownership in the media is no doubt one factor at work, but so is an unconscious - and increasingly unearned - smugness on the part of many in the business.

My second concern about the Jordan story is that I live among, know and teach members of the US military. If, in fact, Jordan stated he "knew for a fact" that the US targets journalists, that is an incredibly incendiary charge to casually assert -- especially in a venue like the press dicussion at Davos. If, further, Jordan then backed off of that claim -- but also accepted congratulations from those who are vastly predisposed to believe it -- then his actions at the very least call into question his leadership of CNN's news organization.

Please note that I am not suggesting in any way that journalists should not pursue valid stories about journalist deaths. I am, however, demanding that such stories be done responsibly, ethically and based on clear and verifiable facts. At Davos, if the accounts are accurate, Jordan smeared the US military without any accountability. Bloggers who are pursuing this story are concerned to remedy that.


Jordan was no doubt responding the the fact that US forces fired rockets at two places known to be where Arab/Muslim news organizations are headquartered on the day that they also create a staged "tearing down of Saddam's statue", and other incidents where there are very serious questions (and no serious investigation) regarding the killing of journalists by US forces.

Rebecca, why don't you track another story--one that left wing bloggers are concerned about (Bush bulge, and the Times spiking the story), and compare how the SCLM covers that story and that the wingnuts and warbloggers are so upset about.

and, you should also track whether Jordan's comments were reported in the Arab/Muslim press....because I haven't seen any evidence that they were. In other words, this is probably a non-story (just like the Ward Churchill thing---suddenly people are outraged by what Churchill wrote three years ago? a completely manufactured controversy....), being used by the right to intimidate real journalists, and you are helping them out here.

Jim R

Hey, There's a war over there. If you're a soldier in a firefight for your life and bullets are whizzing by your head, you're first instinct is 'survival', duh. You'll have to try it yourself sometime Eason, to get what I really mean.

What are your reporters doing in the line of US fire, Eason. Wouldn't that put them on the 'other side'. When a soldier is under fire and people on the other side are pointing things at them, like a 'camera' maybe, the soldier will shoot first to survive the fire fight, then find out what was being pointed later.

I know in your comfortable armchair and international cocktail circuit, this may seem like your guys are being targeted. One would want to ask why you were inclined to come to such a conclusion?


The blogosphere (and that includes you at this point, McKinnon) is treating Jordan's remarks as if they were made of whole cloth.

But there is a sound basis for Jordan's statement that journalists are being targeted....




Ok. This is funny.

1. Bush's "bulge".

Wow. What a scandal. If you've ever worn a kevlar vest, you'd know instantly what this is all about. If you haven't, then the answer is simple. It's the upper edge of a bulletproof vest. A vest worn under the clothes consists of a t-shirt type cloth carrier, effectively a t-shirt with pockets for the kevlar, and the kevlar panels. The carrier has to be washed regularly since the kevlar retains heat and so you end up sweating a lot. To insert the kevlar panels after the carrier has been washed you fold the panel in half, stick it into the pocket and then unfold it in the pocket. This results in the panel having a slight crease in the middle, which showed up as a "bulge".

Don't like that rational answer? Ok. Bush is actually secretly controlled by aliens and they've inserted a brain-pod into his central nervous system.


2. US military targeting journalists.

This is laughable. The American military is the most destructive military force ever created in the history of mankind. If they were intent on killing journalists you can be assured that they could clear Iraq of all journalists inside a couple days.

3. "just like the Ward Churchill thing---suddenly people are outraged by what Churchill wrote three years ago?"

If people are reacting now to this story, then it's because the MSM hadn't reported it when it happened. Which is certainly another example of the MSM failing to do it's job.

Watching the MSM die a slow lingering death is pretty amusing. Save your pennies, you'll need them.


would you care to provide a picture of this supposed Kevlar vest that would result in what the picture shows?

And Ann Coulter says worse things about liberals every day than Churchill said about the 9-11 victims (his biggest mistake was using "Eichmann" instead of "Krupp"). Yet wingnuts like you lap up her slanders and libels.....

Matt Stoller

I'm tired of this.

You're wrong. The left is not wedded to the idea that the war in Iraq is about the American media and perceptions thereof. We think it's about something different, and therefore this fight is not central to who we are. This is not a fight we're pursuing.

I don't think you actually know much about the left-wing blogs. We're much more focused on organizing, and less about media power, which has been obviously corrupt for many years.


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