Notes on the Atrocities Like a 100-watt radio station, broadcasting to the dozens...
Friday, May 23, 2003
Jessica Lynch Revisited
I should have known that Tom was already on this meme (in the comments to the blog below, Tom Maguire details the history of this story, with pro and con). And even when I wrote the blog, I had a slightly sinking feeling that I was an Emma-come-lately on an issue about which I knew little. Me ol' Spidey senses turned out to be on target.
But, having gotten myself up to speed, I see no reason not to stand behind the BBC article and my blog. For two reasons:
1) The BBC's article isn't about whether blanks or bullets were fired. It's got two main points: that Lynch wasn't a shot-up hero, but a hapless victim of war chaos, and that the US knew this, but lied and sold her as a war hero. (All of which I'll grant pales compared to administration lies to the US and UN about the connections between Al Qaida and Iraq and Saddam's possesion of WMD.)
2) My point is that without media diversity, this story goes unexplored. And I'm not even arguing we need to establish a state media agency here. Just that, in this case, the BBC and Guardian weren't interested in selling newspapers or ad time to Americans so moon-eyed by the power of the empire that they wouldn't tolerate criticism, and so they followed the story. It's already the case that that kind of diversity doesn't exist in American media. Selling off the rest of the farm to Rupert Murdoch isn't likely to improve things.
This isn't particularly a rebuttal to Tom, whom I'd bet is leery about this pending FCC ruling. He tends to be a hawk about accuracy in reporting. More that he seemed to be proferring a soapbox, and I took it. (Big surprise there.)