Thursday, May 13, 2004

WISH IT INTO THE CORNFIELD, PART #3,451. Andrew Sullivan reads the Times' coverage of the Berg execution, and doesn't like that Berg's family was interviewed -- or, rather, that they said some things that don't line up with the sort of "dulce est decorum est" horseshit in which Sullivan specializes, and the Times printed it:
The family of Nicholas E. Berg challenged American military officials on Wednesday, insisting that the man beheaded by Islamic terrorists in Iraq had earlier been in the custody of federal officials who should have done more to protect him...

The Iraqi police took Nicholas Berg, 26, into custody on March 24 and held him in a jail that he described in the message as managed by Iraqis with oversight from United States Military Police forces. He wrote that federal agents had questioned his reasons for being in Iraq, whether he had ever built a pipe bomb or had been in Iran.

"They can detain him and deny him his basic civil rights of a lawyer, a phone call or even a charge for 13 days, but they can't get him" on a plane, David Berg said.
"Yes, the family's understandable anger should be reported," concedes Sully. "But their anger should not dictate the entire gist of your story." See, it's not newsworthy that the family of the deceased is pissed at the U.S. Government -- or not propaganda-worthy, anyway. Axis of Evil, why we fight, stay the course -- that's journalism, by God!

Sullivan gets multiple unmitigated-gall points for following this up with a letter from his readership: "I just saw the Nick Berg video in its entirety... I really feel extremely bad for Nick's family. I wish I could give each one of them a big hug and say 'I love you' to them." Make sure you clamp a hand over their mouths when you hug them, buddy, or Sullivan might hear something he doesn't like.

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