Thursday, June 09, 2005

Brett Arends Shoots and Misses

I'm a little late in this post, but I want to get it out of my draft box. (Only in the blogosphere could you feel you are late with a post on a subject if the subject is two days old.)

Brett Arends of the Boston Harold took time out Tuesday from his business beat to, in his best business demeanor, target (I'd put that in sarcasm stars but Mr Arends actually used it in reference to Mr. Bray's efforts) Hiawatha Bray for improperly inferring that Linda Foley accused US troops of murdering journalists in Iraq. According to Mr. Arends:

Bray accuses Foley of claiming, in a speech on May 13, that the U.S. military was "deliberately murdering journalists in Iraq."

Bray lashes the union president for making the accusations without offering any evidence. "We have no right to lie about" soldiers bravely fighting the war, he writes, "slandering them even as they risk their lives for our sakes. It's reprehensible, and I won't have it."

Bray is so angry he is launching a write-in campaign for election to the guild's executive committee.

Bray is joining a campaign against Foley that has appeared elsewhere, on other blogs and in the conservative Washington Times.

The problem is, the widely repeated transcript of Foley's remarks does not exactly bear out the accusations.

Foley said journalists were being "targeted'' in Iraq, but did not say by whom. She merely accused the military of taking a "cavalier" attitude to the matter.

It is nice that Mr Arends immediately notes Foley Gate's citation of her letter to President Bush from earlier in May, but he needn't even stray from her remarks of 13 May. Mr. Arends only needs to read the next paragraph of the transcript (that I put up, here, or listen her next thought from the video at Jackson's Junction):

And it's not just US journalists, either, by the way. They target and kill, ah, journalists from other countries, particularly Arab countries like Al -, like Arab news services like Al-Jazeera, for example. They actually target them and blow up their studios, ah, with impunity ....

I can't believe Mr. Arends researches his subject so poorly before writing on it.

Update: Forgot the hat tip to Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler

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