The Botereid

Sunday, October 24, 2004

the British press

Andrew Sullivan's post on The Guardian makes me want to be a Tory. I read that paper infrequently as it is, and I don't think I'm going to touch it again.

BBC News, of which many others have expressed their digust, is definitely going in that direction, although in terms of sheer vituperation they're not there yet. Still, this "story" purporting to show how "different approaches [by the British and US armies in Iraq] have influenced the attitudes of local people towards the military," is nothing but yet another screed on the Iraq occupation. There's barely any comparison at all to the tactics used on the ground -- just a few melodramatic anecdotes, including the obligatory "not all Americans are assholes" passage, which seems particularly forced here.

What's most depressing is that I'm sure this type of article is popular. It just confirms, yet again, that the US has blundered in Iraq. Given the unpopularity of the war abroad, including in England, this is the type of piece that's probably rushed to a prominent position by the editors, with no care for actual journalism. "It sounds right," could pass as fact-checking in this case. The world's journalists should in fact thank us for the Iraq war and the world's refusal to see it as liberation: Never have so many journalists been able to get away with doing so little work. Never has such serious business been so widely seen as just another way to get a promotion, and perhaps a raise.

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