Saturday, June 02, 2007

What We are Missing

I have long been skeptical that blogging would ever overcome mainstream journalism, at least in the short term, as far as obtaining hard news is concerned. I am slowly starting to come around to the proposition.

Read this article by Michael Yon. I do not care what your current feelings on the war in Iraq are, you will learn more from this article about what is actually going on than an entire year's worth of articles from any media outlet. This is news. Seeing something like this demonstrates the open wound that this country is suffering due to a true lack of journalism.

It is interesting that as the old media moves from true journalism to punditry, there is just the opposite occurring in the new media in many cases. Indeed, in many areas the only difference is the lack of funding for bloggers. Imagine what could happen if you gave Tedski or Greg Patterson a salary to pursue blogging full time. Sure each have their biases, but they are up front, and each is far more entertaining and informative than any of the current political reporters when a story hits in their realm of understanding. I would guarantee that the political establishment would have a lot more to fear, and that is always a positive.

For now, however, it is nice however to get an occasional glimpse of what is possible, and be excited for a day when informative, accurate, original, and detailed reporting makes its ultimate return. May it get here sooner than later.


Rex Scott said...

Thanks for this post, Framer. It did give one the sense of being "right there." Here are two telling excerpts that speak to the foolhardiness of Bush's war in Iraq and the ultimate futility of our efforts there:

1.) Many people in Hit directly attribute the resurrection of this city in large part to the courage of Iraqi Police General Ibrahim Hamid Jaza (General Hamid), who took an aggressive stand against the Al Qaeda (AQI) terrorists who had brazenly made Anbar province a home base and slaughter pad with their marketplace car bombs, beheadings, and reputation for hiding bombs intended to kill parents in the corpses of dead children they’d gutted.

2.) Tribal politics may also have been a factor: Hamid is part of the community, if the Americans took him out, that would buy cover for tribal leaders. Or maybe they honestly just needed someone with a bigger stick than Hamid’s. After all, he had helped crush AQI, and they are tough enemies. Whatever turns out to be the underlying cause, Crissman was mindful that Iraqis have their own time clocks, and a limited store of patience for Americans, who were being handed an opportunity to demonstrate leadership in action.

Al Qaida moved into Iraq after the invasion and the fall of Saddam because they saw the country as fertile ground for their operations and the spread of their propaganda. Bush was warned of this eventuality...and ignored the warnings. He did not weaken global terrorism when he started this war, he strengthened it.

As for the second excerpt, while I am suitably impressed with the quick thinking and diplomacy Crissman demonstrated, the "tribal politics" he dealt with in this incident speak to a larger problem we Americans face in hoping to be seen as an honest broker by the many disparate groups we hope to bring into an Iraqi democracy. There will not always be the kind of outcome Crissman engineered and the Hit leaders accepted. What is more likely is that more Americans will die as one faction or another sees us as showing favoritism to their ancient foes.

We can not leave Iraq precipitously and make the situation we have created there even worse. The Move On types don't get this. Our member of Congress (who you enjoy trashing on this site) DOES get it and has been a sober, discerning voice on Iraq since being elected. People like Giffords are the key to safely and soundly extricating the US from the ugly morass we are now in thanks to the impulsive and imperial policies of George W. Bush.

x4mr said...


Fabulous link.


Sirocco said...

Yeah ... absolutely fascinating read.