Friday, October 26, 2007

McClatchy Propaganda Speech

At the McClatchy Company’s Raleigh News & Observer’s Editor’s Blog executive editor for news Melanie Sill is cluck-clucking in a post she titles: “Honors for McClatchy's Iraqi journalists.”

I want to provide here excerpts from Sill’s post which includes comments from a McClatchy news editor and the full text of an acceptance speech by a McClatchy reporter stationed in Baghdad.

I end the post with a copy of a comment I’ve just left on the thread of Sill’s post and a link to the recent speech in which Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez excoriated journalists and news organizations for their biased news coverage from Iraq which Sanchez said has cost American lives.

Sill begins:

“I wanted to share some words from David Westphal, head of our McClatchy Washington bureau, about recognition for six courageous women who worked in the McClatchy (former Knight Ridder) Baghdad bureau. (Read our Iraqi staffers' blog here)

[Westphal writes]:"Six current and former Iraqi staffers in Baghdad were awarded the Courage Award in New York today (Tuesday) by the International Women's Media Foundation. Four of the six were present for the awards lunch at the Waldorf Astoria, and one of them, Sahar Issa, gave a smash acceptance speech on everyone's behalf.

Standing behind her were Ban Adil Sarhan, Huda Ahmed and Alaa Majeed. Not able to attend were Zaineb Obeid and Shatha al Awsy. A McClatchy fan club, including John Walcott, Mark Seibel, Leila Fadel, plus Knight Ridder alums Clark Hoyt and Steve Butler, led the cheering section

"We are so proud of them. Their reporting from the streets and roads and markets of Iraq is the foundation of our Baghdad report, and it was obvious from the crowd's reaction (and individual comments afterwards) that McClatchy's sparkling work on Iraq was widely understood and respected.”[…]

N&O editor Melanie Sill then tells readers:

Westphal also shared text of the acceptance speech given by Sahar Issa on behalf of the six Iraqi women in McClatchy's Baghdad bureau.

Here it is :

"It is a great honor for me to stand here today.

"To me, this award means that my colleagues and I have succeeded in what we set out to do; and that our voices have carried, through war, through death and sorrow, through sleepless nights and fear driven days in an effort to reflect the picture of our country as we see it, and of out people as only we can truly know them.

"To be a journalist in violence ridden Iraq today, ladies and gentlemen, is not a matter lightly undertaken. Every path is strewn with danger, every checkpoint, every question a direct threat.

"Every interview we conduct may be our last. So much is happening in Iraq. So much that is questionable. So much that we, as journalists, try to fathom and portray to the people who care to know."

"In every society there is good and bad. Laws regulate the conduct of the society. My country is now lawless. Innocent blood is shed every day, seemingly without purpose. Hundreds of thousands have been killed for seemingly no reason. It is our responsibility to do our utmost to acquire the answers, to dig them up with our bare hands if we must."

Comment to N&O executive editor for news Melanie Sill

Dear Melanie,

Do you know what Sahar Issa means when she says, “My country is now lawless?”

Most parts of Iraq are now more safe and peaceful than they’ve been in decades.

Why did Issa say, “Innocent blood is shed every day, seemingly without purpose?”

She knows Al-Qaeda and Muslim terrorist groups funded and trained by Iran make no secret of why they blowup innocent men, women and children.

They want to destabilize every part of the world – most especially now Iraq – so they can inflict on people that form of barbarism called Muslim Fundamentalism.

Issa knows it’s not true that: “Hundreds of thousands have been killed for seemingly no reason.”

Hundreds of thousands have not been killed.

And of those who have been killed, they’ve most often been killed by the terrorists for the purpose I just stated.

Why didn’t Issa say that?

The terrorists are so purposeful in their killings that they stage their attacks to gain maximum news coverage and do the greatest possible harm to peaceful economic and social order and the security forces supporting them.

Issa’s acceptance speech is just the sort of propaganda meme we hear from the extreme anti-American Left here and the Al-Qaeda enablers over there.

Why did McClatchy hire her in the first place?

Why are McClatchy news editors such as you boasting about a reporter who makes such an ill-informed, propagandistic speech?

And when is the N&O going to tell readers what General Sanchez said about most journalists reporting from Iraq and the great harm they are doing?

If you’d publish what Sanchez said, people could read what Issa said and easily connect the dots.


John in Carolina.

Folks, here’s a link to Sanchez’s speech.

Hat tips: Mike Williams and Kaz


scott said...

Melanie Sill and the Iraqi "news" reporter are crapweasels of the highest order.

I guess Iraq was not lawless and hundreds of thousands of people were not killed for no reason when over a million people were killed by the regime of Saddam Hussein when he was in power.

The mainstream media is the last place anyone who wants truthful reporting about the war in Iraq should look. Not only are these people inherently biased in their outlook by virtue of working for a mainstream media outlet, almost none of them have any military experience from which to draw in writing their stories. In fact, the overwhelming majority, in lockstep with the previous CinC, loathe the military.

The best source for truth in reporting in Iraq are the milbloggers. Now those guys deserve a Courage Award.

Anonymous said...

John, you are confusing the issue with facts. We are always wrong and the US can do no good. we have to be evil, otherwise their whole world comes crashing in around them.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps you might be interested in some other McClatchy staffers' actions in Iran. The post below relates to the hubris of one of their "reporters", and puts some of the MSM vs. Real World tensions in perspective: