web counter Media Lies: Men of valor

Sunday, November 21, 2004

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Men of valor

There's a reason the NY Times is "the paper of record". Despite their constant liberal whine, they produce reporters who win Pulitzer prizes after cutting their teeth in the gritty back streets of some of the world's lonliest and most dangerous places. Today they published an embed's report of the battles in Fallujah. It's up close and personal, the nasty, bloody, melancholy business of war.
On one particularly grim night, a group of marines from Bravo Company's First Platoon turned a corner in the darkness and headed up an alley. As they did so, they came across men dressed in uniforms worn by the Iraqi National Guard. The uniforms were so perfect that they even carried pieces of red tape and white, the signal agreed upon to assure American soldiers that any Iraqis dressed that way would be friendly; the others could be killed.

The marines, spotting the red and white tape, waved, and the men in Iraqi uniforms opened fire. One American, Corporal Anderson, died instantly. One of the wounded men, Pfc. Andrew Russell, lay in the road, screaming from a nearly severed leg.

A group of marines ran forward into the gunfire to pull their comrades out. But the ambush, and the enemy flares and gunfire that followed, rattled the men of Bravo Company more than any event. In the darkness, the men began to argue. Others stood around in the road. As the platoon's leader, Lt. Andy Eckert, struggled to take charge, the Third Platoon seemed on the brink of panic.
Writing like this harks back to the days of World War II, when men with real courage reported the war from the front lines.

In a story published in the Post-Gazette of Pittsburgh, Jack Kelly takes on the media's parsimonious and grossly slanted coverage of the conflict.
The victory in Fallujah was also remarkable for its speed, Peters said. Speed was necessary, he said, "because you are fighting not just the terrorists, but a hostile global media."

Fallujah ranks up there with Iwo Jima, Inchon and Hue as one of the greatest triumphs of American arms, though you'd have a hard time discerning that from what you read in the newspapers.

The swift capture of Fallujah is taxing the imagination of Arab journalists and -- sadly -- our own. How does one portray a remarkable American victory as if it were of little consequence, or even a defeat? For CNN's Walter Rodgers, camped out in front the main U.S. military hospital in Germany, you do this by emphasizing American casualties.
Thanks to Powerline for highlighting both of these stories.

UPDATE: More compelling stories about our fighters. Hat tip to Roger Simon.