Watchdog Blog

Archive for the 'Iraq' Category

Dan Froomkin: Leslie Gelb on the Media’s Iraq Fiasco

A veteran journalist and Washington insider has completed an empirical study of the elite press’s performance in the run-up to and early days of the Iraq war and – big surprise – has found it badly wanting. Leslie H. Gelb, writing in Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, concludes that American’s finest journalists failed to even [...]

Dan Froomkin: What’s the Way Out in Iraq?

Washington-based editors have apparently found an exit strategy for Iraq, but it couldn’t be more short-sighted: They’ve decided to pull their reporters out of the country. This morning’s Washington Post features a front-page story by Ernesto Londoño and Amit R. Paley describing how the number of foreign journalists in Baghdad is “declining sharply, a media [...]

Saul Friedman: Assign a Police Reporter to the White House

Following up on a piece by Gil Cranberg, I wonder if it isn’t time for the mainstream press to treat the president as it would any suspect of a crime, in this case, war crimes, which are punishable under American law. After all, we’ve seen endless stories about all sorts of crimes and suspects. The [...]

Gilbert Cranberg: Answering for War Crimes

If you go to Page 17 of the national edition of the June 25 New York Times, stop at a story headed “Bipartisan Group to Speak Out on Detainees,” then scroll down to the ninth paragraph, you will find the following statement by retired Major General Antonio Taguba: “There is no longer any doubt as [...]

Saul Friedman: 3,983—but Who’s Counting?

Conventional political wisdom keeps saying that people have lost interest in the Iraq war, that it’s no longer an issue. It’s the economy again, stupid. Well I know at least eight American families who would disagree. They are grieving for eight soldiers killed March 10 in separate incidents in the non-Iraq war. Another four were [...]

Gilbert Cranberg: Greenspan’s ‘War About Oil’ Comment Deserves a Longer Look

Alan Greenspan surprised a lot of people when he wrote in his recently-published book that “the Iraq war is largely about oil.” A surprise because candor in high places on that subject usually is in short supply. Weapons of mass destruction? Of course. Regime change? Sure. Spread democracy? Ditto. Oil? Never or almost never by [...]

Saul Friedman: Time for a Closer Look at Condoleeza Rice

So far, of all the top officials in the Bush administration, Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice has gotten away relatively unscathed in the main stream press. Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld, George Tenet, the Joint Chiefs and President Bush himself have taken punishment, at least in the polls. But except for her shoe buying during the [...]

Cornelia Carrier: Coming Face to Face With the War

I have looked at the face of every service person killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. How? I watch PBS’s NewsHour every night and tape it when I am out. The NewsHour is the only TV news program that shows pictures of each of the service personnel killed in Iraq. I have learned to tell immediately [...]

Saul Friedman: After Libby and Cheney There Is Still Iraq

Now can we get back to what most Americans consider the most important issue facing the country–the war and the killing in Iraq? Sure, the president’s commutation of Scooter Libby’s prison sentence was, and is, a good and important story. And it was fun to poke fun at puppeteer Dick Cheney’s effort to declare himself [...]

Saul Friedman: The Unasked Questions

Ten more young Americans died in Iraq on Mother’s Day weekend (not counting the three who were captured by insurgents), bringing the total dead so far to a new mark, 3,400. It was grim grim news for moms, and dads and the dozens of folks who were touched by these lives and their deaths. The [...]