AP Wins The Duranty Prize
or what's a few dead Iraqis if you get a mongo journalism prize?
By streiff Posted in War — Comments (8) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »
I’ve been of the opinion for some three years now that large portions of the US media are intent upon creating a US defeat in Iraq outright or in spinning the history of the war so that when we do win it will appear to have been conducted incompetently and won by good fortune rather than by the dint of hard work, devotion to duty, and self sacrifice.
While sympathy for Islamofascists was particularly evident in the recent Israeli punitive expedition in Lebanon with photographs being consciously manipulated to support the war effort of Hezbollah my particular concern has long been with the reportage of the Associated Press from Iraq.
In 2005 the AP scored a Pulitzer Prize in “breaking news photography” largely on the efforts of a handful of Iraqi stringers.
The most striking, that of the murder of three Iraqi elections workers on Haifa Street, has long raised suspicions among everyone except the media. Belmont Club’s Wretcherd masterfully covered the story in Haifa Street and in The Odds Against.
Today the AP runs a story:
The U.S. military in Iraq has imprisoned an Associated Press photographer for five months, accusing him of being a security threat but never filing charges or permitting a public hearing.
The military said Hussein was captured with two insurgents, including Hamid Hamad Motib, an alleged leader of al-Qaida in Iraq. "He has close relationships with persons known to be responsible for kidnappings, smuggling, improvised explosive device (IED) attacks and other attacks on coalition forces," according to a May 7 e-mail from U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Jack Gardner, who oversees all coalition detainees in Iraq.
"The information available establishes that he has relationships with insurgents and is afforded access to insurgent activities outside the normal scope afforded to journalists conducting legitimate activities," Gardner wrote to AP International Editor John Daniszewski.
One of Hussein's photos was part of a package of 20 photographs that won a Pulitzer Prize for breaking news photography last year. His contribution was an image of four insurgents in Fallujah firing a mortar and small arms during the U.S.-led offensive in the city in November 2004.
Of course, now AP is spinning the fact that they had an embedded photographer with the forces carrying out murders and kidnappings of Iraqi civilians as well as attacks on US forces as some kind of “freedom of the press” issue.
AP executives in New York and Baghdad have sought to persuade U.S. officials to provide additional information about allegations against Hussein and to have his case transferred to the Iraqi criminal justice system. The AP contacted military leaders in Iraq and the Pentagon, and later the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad.
The AP has worked quietly until now, believing that would be the best approach. But with the U.S. military giving no indication it would change its stance, the news cooperative has decided to make public Hussein's imprisonment, hoping the spotlight will bring attention to his case and that of thousands of others now held in Iraq, Curley said.
I hope the AP gets their wish because the Iraqis have been prolific in hanging terrorists.
The New York Times has been under criticism for years for the Pulitzer Prize it won for the reportage of Soviet lickspittle Walter Duranty. At least in Duranty’s defense we can say he didn’t kill anyone, didn’t kidnap anyone, and didn’t hang out on a street corner waiting for three harmless men, men helping to carry out one of the first free and fair elections in any Arab nation, to be gunned down in, to borrow a phrase from John Murtha, cold blood.
We can’t say that about AP and their Iraqi stringers.