April 26, 2006

MORE NOTEBOOKS ON THE GROUND: Bruce Kesler writes in Editor and Publisher

Journalists are reviled by many for alleged negativism and over-focus on bad news in Iraq. Or perhaps the problem is: Their employers are just trying to do it on the cheap. Ironically, the same media that criticizes the U.S. for sending too few troops to stabilize Iraq send too few reporters to cover much more than the dramatic bombings around Baghdad.

“I hope we keep out of the post-Vietnam thing that the press lost the war,” Joe Galloway, soon to retire military editor for Knight Ridder, recently told me in an interview. But discrepancies in what’s reported, or an imbalance, are daily highlighted by military bloggers in Iraq and conservative commentators here at home.

J.D. Johannes agrees with Kesler:

As one who has been an embedded reporter in Iraq, I would answer in the affirmative. . . . I can name all the other reporters I met last Summer–because there were so few of them. I actually met more radio talk show hosts than major media reporters.

Ouch.