Friday, June 24, 2005

The Media in Iraq

Like everything else, the actions of the Media here in Iraq range from the very best of human efforts to the very worst.

At the top of the list goes those folks who daily risk their lives, without the aid of their own weapons, to get the real story of what's going on here out to the world.

One such individual is Michael Yon, with his own blog at :

Brave, honest, I can't say enough good things about him, and all other good journalists like him. These guys are the best that America has.

And, then there is the other side of the coin. Those journalists that conspire, knowingly, with the Anti-Iraqi terrorists so they can get good copy. Mostly, they go for shocking pictures of the blood, gore, and pain immediately following a car bomb explosion.

I know video clips of the aftermath of car bombs are scary to watch on TV. They make for dramatic scenes; flames rising from burning, twisted wrecks of vehicles smoking in some hard to pronounce Iraqi city center. But, they are more about killing Iraqi civilians to scare you, the viewer, than actually shaping the battlefield or killing US soldiers.

For these people, the scum of the reporter pool, the news is strictly a commercial enterprise. “If it bleeds, it leads” is only a more recent version of their old slogan: “Dog Bites Man” isn’t news – “Man Bites Dog” is news. Of course they emphasize the bizarre, the twisted, the blood and the gore and the tears. For them, it’s a video freak show. Barnum & Bailey with commentary talking heads spliced between scenes from Hell. That’s what gets viewers attention long enough to watch the beer, truck, and hemorrhoid ointment commercials. The Media isn’t the message – it’s an electronic billboard to get you to buy their trash. Pure and simple, it’s dollar and cents, nothing more, nothing less.

For example, at a foiled car-bomb attempt near Tikrit, in which the Iraqi Army spotted and shot up an on-coming car-bomb before it could take out its intended victims, who should “happen” to be standing by with camera in hand, ready for his "scoop"? Why, a fellow carrying press credentials from the Washington Post.

And, who was it that drove wounded terrorists to the hospital after another failed attack near Baqubah? Three reporters, all of whom “happened” to be on scene when the attack commenced: two from Al Jazeera, and one from ABC News.

I kid you not.

This is bloody business, this war. But, to these type of media creeps, in their blind rush towards better and better ratings, business has never been better!

Obviously these reporters had prior knowledge of the attacks. The same kinds of attacks that resulted in over 1,000 Iraqi deaths last month. Did these reporters feel they should report to the Iraq or US Army that these terrorist attacks were about to occur?

They did not.

No, they stood there, waiting for the blood and the gore, with dreams of Pulitzer’s dancing in their heads. Rather than dime out their Al Qaeda sources, they stood by and filmed the approach of the terrorists in each case, hiding, the whole time, behind Iraqi bushes and American First Amendment Rights.