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Old 08-22-2003, 04:29 PM   #1
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U.S negligence is killing journalists

i had this emailed to me today, so i can't put the link, but here's the full article. long, but VERY interesting.


Quote:
U.S. negligence is killing journalists
Mark Kingwell
National Post
Wednesday, August 20, 2003

>American soldiers are killing journalists in Iraq now, which is
>either a bold escalation of the Bush Administration's War on
>Criticism or a result of frustration and fatigue, I can't decide
>which. Lucky for me I'm writing this from the comfort and safety of
>my Toronto office-bunker, so not at great risk of not-so-friendly
>fire from trigger-happy troops.
>
>I admit the attacks took me by surprise. After all, the journalists
>covering the war have done their level best to pose no threat to
>anyone or anything, let alone the truth. Never before have reporters
>been so docile, so (to infringe Fox's trademark) "fair and
>balanced," in their coverage of an unpopular war, rallying and
>cheering and bending their necks to the stroke of Ari Fleischer's
>verbal lash. Embedded newsies succumbed to severe attacks of
>gear-envy, jock-sniffing and manhood-diminution. The main injuries
>they suffered were bruises from the scramble to abase themselves in
>front of real men, the ones with guns.
>
>You'd think even a flailing administration, baffled by growing
>opposition and plummeting approval ratings, would be happy with such
>uncritical coverage. But clearly it was not enough. Bad news is a
>constant danger, like sunburn and insect bites. And of course,
>Reuters is an independent agency and might have some "anti-American"
>agenda, like accurately reporting the news. Something had to give.
>
>Oh, I'm kidding. I know the soldiers didn't kill the journalist
>deliberately. Or rather, they did kill him deliberately, but not
>because he was a threat. Or rather, he was a threat in their minds,
>but not just because he briefly appeared to be. Or rather, it was
>just because he briefly appeared to be, but not because they were
>wrong about that. Or rather, they were wrong about that, but
>sometimes a video camera does look like a lethal weapon, doesn't it?
>Or rather, it doesn't look like a lethal weapon, but it just might
>be one, and who says shoot first and ask questions later doesn't
>make sense?
>
>Mazen Dana, a 43-year-old cameraman with the Reuters news agency,
>was shot and killed on Sunday as he was videotaping near a U.S.-run
>prison on the outskirts of Baghdad. The soldiers, firing from two
>patrolling tanks, say they mistook his camera for a rocket-propelled
>grenade launcher, which is also a piece of metal equipment sometimes
>carried on the shoulder. The press advocacy groups Reporters Without
>Borders, based in France, and the Committee to Protect Journalists,
>based in the United States, have demanded a full investigation. This
>is the second death of a Reuters journalist in less than a week,
>which might have an effect on future recruitment efforts.
>
>Now let's be clear -- as clear as we were urged to be when some
>adrenalized U.S. Air National Guard fighter jocks dropped a
>500-pound bomb on some Princess Pats in Afghanistan last year,
>killing four and seriously injuring eight others. Yes, there is such
>a thing as the fog of war. And yes, accidents happen. And yes, yes,
>all people, combatant or not, who voluntarily enter a war zone are
>implicitly accepting its dangers.
>
>All true. And yet, and yet.
>
>The press groups are charging the U.S. soldiers with "negligence,"
>and there is certainly a case to be made for that. Unlike the
>Afghanistan incident, this error occurred in broad daylight. Fellow
>journalists say the military personnel on site were aware of their
>presence. "We had been there for half an hour" when Mr. Dana was
>targeted and shot, said one. A video camera is a about the size and
>shape of a briefcase, whereas a RPG is launched with a narrow tube
>about four feet long. The Oxford English Dictionary defines
>negligence as lack of attention or care. Mr. Dana was probably
>wishing for either less attention or more care when the soldiers
>opened up on him, but yes, negligence, I think so.
>
>The problem, however, as with the disgruntled grunt from the Third
>Infantry Division who called for Donald Rumsfeld's resignation a few
>weeks back, is that the individuals will be punished and the
>situation left untouched. We all know that the cracks in the
>U.S.-led invasion of Iraq have been showing for weeks, that this
>latest death is not just another casualty of war but a clear warning
>things are likely to get much, much worse. Britain rages in a
>controversy over the puffed-up arguments for this illegal war, with
>Prime Minister Tony Blair's closest aides now admitting liberties
>were taken in presenting information to Parliament.
>
>And still -- I know, you're tired of hearing it, but still -- no
>weapons of mass destruction have been found.
>
>Meanwhile, the situation on the ground grows bloodier by the day.
>
>Resistance within Iraq is stiffening, now attacking civilian targets
>as well as coalition troops. In the past week, saboteurs blew up a
>large oil pipeline to Turkey three days after it reopened, a water
>main was bombed in Baghdad and a sewage plant was set on fire. The
>police chief of Mosul was shot and two other officers were killed in
>an ambush; a Danish soldier died in a bomb blast; some American
>soldiers were shot as they left a restaurant; an attack on the
>United Nations headquarters in Baghdad left 17 dead, including the
>UN's top official there. "Every American needs to believe this,"
>said General Ricardo Sanchez, the head of U.S. forces in Iraq, "that
>if we fail here in this environment, the next battlefield will be
>the streets of America."
>
>That's nonsense, but it contains a hint of truth. The death of Mazen
>Dana is a small but sure sign that the Americans are already failing
>in that "environment." The real question now is not whether they can
>succeed -- they can't -- but whether they can even withdraw without
>a lot more deadly "negligence."
>
>No matter what they do, or when, it's too late for Mazen Dana.
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Old 08-22-2003, 04:39 PM   #2
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i emailed it to you, you jackass. give credit where credit is due.
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Old 08-22-2003, 04:41 PM   #3
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It's GWB's fault
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Old 08-22-2003, 04:42 PM   #4
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let's face it bear, i don't want any associations with you.


_____________________________________

there are a lot of interesting points that rise from this article. one i took particular interest in was "docile" coverage. clearly this is non-american journalism.

increasingly, reuters has been out of the news as a source, and military analysts and uber liberals have replaced the actually fair and balanced reuters.


here, we aren't seeing many editorial articles, and the ones that ARE appearing aren't based on things like facts or logic, but speculation and assumption. it's all "4 more killed in iraq today, but we're still making progress, so says don rumsfeld" it's like...look at this horrible "accident", but feel that it's justified because we're making so much progress (which isn't true at all)

then when people send letters to the editor or whatever to debate, the debates are based on common knowledge and assumptions it's the old military guy that says "trust in the government" who clearly doesn't remember vietnam. it's the uber-liberal who says we shouldn't be there and that it's an incrimination of their rights that we did anything to stop saddam and that we should pull out now. and the young zealot hoping for peace and harmony saying they appreciate the military but just want this to be over so everyone can be happy and get back to their own lives.


well none of those are right, people aren't realizing that we're in a situation in which we need to make some compromises but the compromise should not include believing that once this is "over" we'll all be happy and normal again.

we're already there, why can't we just get it right and help the iraqi people set up a government that will work for them. in 20 years, i don't want there to be another rash of wars in the middle east. we have the opportunity now to help them and get them on their feet.

we have the power not to let this slide into a vietnam circa 1968. american journalism needs to step up to the plate here and deliver fair news, bad, good. don't lie and say that we are having setbacks but it's ok cos it's all in don rumsfeld's plans. he has high potential to be a mcnamera, and that's a bit scary.
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Old 08-22-2003, 04:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
It's GWB's fault
youre damn straight it is.
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Old 08-22-2003, 04:49 PM   #6
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actually, it's not technically his fault.


i'm gonna shift the blame to donald rumsfeld, something tells me he's being less than honest with w.
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Old 08-22-2003, 04:52 PM   #7
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ultimately bush is the one man who could decide if they went to war or not. i place all blame on him, for none of this was necessary. look at the mess they have on their hands now.

but hey, i know the american economy is strong enough to sustain the 1 billion dollars a week that is required to keep the american war machine running in iraq.
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Old 08-22-2003, 04:58 PM   #8
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it isn't that strong, they're stealing from states and all the states are in budgetary criseses too. it's trickle down slow suffocation.


yes, it is ultimately W's decision whether to go to war, but i think he was fed with a lot of lies, not unlike the american public (wmd's, they're gonna attack us at any time etc etc). everyone knows that the president is a puppet of his cabinet.
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Old 08-22-2003, 05:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lilly
it isn't that strong, they're stealing from states and all the states are in budgetary criseses too. it's trickle down slow suffocation.


yes, it is ultimately W's decision whether to go to war, but i think he was fed with a lot of lies, not unlike the american public (wmd's, they're gonna attack us at any time etc etc). everyone knows that the president is a puppet of his cabinet.

My state's Old Guard claims that there's no economic crisis, but hell even our Republican governor says there is. As for Iraq, yes, the president is a puppet of his cabinet. People around here know what I think of Rumsfeld in particular.
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Old 08-22-2003, 10:12 PM   #10
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Is that article from the National Compost?

Because if it is, that only makes things more interesting. The National Post is a xenophobic, right wing newspaper, and if it is publishing this sort of stuff, then that's a mighty turn.
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Old 08-22-2003, 10:54 PM   #11
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occupiers do not like independent journalists putting out images that do not support their misrepresentations.


Quote:
Killing prompts new war crime call


The killing of reporters in war zones should be made a new war crime after the death of a British cameraman in Gaza, campaigners say.

James Miller, 34, from Devon, was shot in the southern troublespot of Rafah.
Initial findings from an Israeli Defence Forces investigation into the affair indicate that the correspondent was shot in the back, with sources suggesting that he may have been hit by Palestinian gunfire.
The award-winning journalist was filming a documentary on the effect of terrorism on children for the American cable giant HBO.
Another Briton who had been with Mr Miller said they were waving a white flag and moving towards an Israeli armoured vehicle when it opened fire.
Aidan White, general secretary of the International Federation of Journalists, said the Israeli army must not be allowed to "brush aside" Mr Miller's death with their "routine and callous expressions of regret".
The Israeli army said it had returned fire after being attacked by rocket-propelled grenades and expressed "sorrow at a civilian death".
But a spokesman added: "It must be stressed a cameraman who knowingly enters a combat zone, especially at night, endangers himself."
Mr White, whose federation operates on behalf of about 500,000 journalists globally, said there must be a full inquiry into Mr Miller's death, a call echoed by the Foreign Office.
"Killing journalists either deliberately or by gross negligence should be made official war crimes under international law," he said.
"There is now an unstoppable wave of anger within journalism which is calling for action to halt this process.
"The military authorities cannot any longer ignore the fact that journalists in war zones and conflict areas are doing a legitimate and important public duty and that special attention must be paid to their safety."
Mr White said it was a "terrible irony" that Mr Miller died on World Press Freedom Day.
A Foreign Office spokesman said: "We are in contact with the Israeli authorities and pushing for a full and transparent investigation."
Mr Miller was born in Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, and had been living in Devon with his wife and son.
The cameraman had won international acclaim for his documentary work including Beneath the Veil - a film about life under the Taleban.
He was killed in Rafah, an area of Gaza on the southern border with Egypt which is a site of frequent gun battles between Israeli soldiers and Palestinian militants.
On Friday, the Israeli foreign ministry announced plans to crack down on international "human shield" volunteers who have attempted to prevent demolitions.
They started by detaining a member of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) in Rafah.
A British peace activist with the ISM is now in a coma after he was shot in the head by an Israeli tank in Rafah last month.
Thomas Hurndall, 22, was believed to have been among a group of nine activists who had to abandon their planned protest at a refugee camp in Rafah when shooting started.
Two other peace activists were also wounded last month and a 23-year-old American was killed in March.



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