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Posted: 12/20/2005 12:35:19 PM EDT
clicky




American reporters in Iraq often don't have the trust of the troops, according to this two-time embed -- and father of an Iraq veteran -- and here's why. But when "there's a good one on the ground, the word gets around."

By Dennis Anderson

(December 17, 2005) -- Not that reporters are particularly trusted anyway, but as a class of people having a high and visible participation in the war in Iraq, dozens of GIs and Marines I've spoken with allow as how they just don't trust reporters.

There was Staff Sgt. Cory Blackwell of Lancaster, recently headed for his second tour in Iraq with the 4th Infantry Division, nicknamed the "Ivy Division" and "The Regulars."

Blackwell, 27, is a professional soldier. He holds the customary glum view of professional news gatherers in the Iraq war.

"We tried to stay away from them," he said. "You had the feeling that whatever you might be doing, they wanted to catch you at something on tape. That would make their career."

Blackwell related that when the camera crews showed up, some helpful GI in his squad would give directions -- directing the crew to the location of a nearby unit. "We'd just say, 'Hey, go down the street there with second squad ... it’s gonna be awesome.'"



Link Posted: 12/20/2005 12:37:09 PM EDT



NERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR­RRRRRRRDS!
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 12:39:55 PM EDT
Ain't that the truth... some good ones.. some not so good ones.

A 1st Sarg told me that he prefered the older reporters rather than the younger ones... and steered cleared of the younger ones when they were around.
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 12:49:46 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/20/2005 12:50:11 PM EDT by remedy]
THe rest of the article is pretty interesting:



My news daddy and mentor, Joe Galloway, helped get me hired into United Press International a quarter century ago. Now he prowls the E-Ring at the Pentagon as chief military correspondent for Knight Ridder, and we carry his column in the Valley Press.

Galloway, a civilian, was decorated with the Bronze Star with Valor device for rescuing wounded at the battle of Ia Drang. His accounts of the battle form the basis of "We Were Soldiers Once, and Young," co-written with retired Lt. Gen. Hal Moore. Moore was portrayed by Mel Gibson in "We Were Soldiers" and Barry Pepper played Galloway.

With his accumulation of more than 40 years of war reporting, and abundance of combat time, Galloway believes the Bush administration is so far off course in running the Iraq war that a global positioning satellite fix couldn't get them steered right.
Our mutual views do not fall in strict agreement on all matters related to the war, but Galloway's experience and integrity give his views such weight that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld recently hosted Galloway at lunch. Rumsfeld makes no moves without calculating, and the lunch wasn't social. He intended to bust Galloway's chops and "turn" Galloway to seeing the Rumsfeld view of the world.

It didn't work (as he later told E&P's Greg Mitchell for a Pressing Issues column on this site). Galloway is enraged about soldiers shortchanged on armor, sent to battle without the best body armor, sent out on the bad bomb-laden roads in lightly armored vehicles. He's enraged that heavy equipment like tanks and tracked vehicles got left stateside because it's cheaper to run the fuel tab for Humvees than for Abrams tanks, which have high survivability.

If Galloway's wrong, he just wants to be shown where and how. He's enraged that contractors were getting big, fat, dripping war-profiteering profits while the families of GIs and Marines shipped equipment they needed bought from catalogs instead of being issued.

So there was my son, Garrett, during his Iraq deployment. A number of reporters for big name outfits tracked the progress of his Marine grunt outfit during the assault on Fallujah, the fight waged to turn the nastiest center of insurgency into a community with a decent shot for a future. Garrett informed me, "I told my captain, 'I grew up with reporters. They were in the house, and I grew up in a newsroom. I can tell when you've got a good one, and when you've got a bum,' and there was one guy with us who was a bum. I told the captain, 'This guy's gonna burn us.'"

So, I'm getting this second-hand, but the way it went was that the reporter held in low esteem by my media-whelped child did the usual small tricks. Handed out cigarettes, joked a lot, generally ingratiated himself. Bonding with the troops, see.

Stuff was blowing up in Fallujah. Pillars of smoke plumed from buildings hit with joint direct attack munitions, or JDAM, bombs, and from stuff that caught fire from incendiary ammunition. Oddly, the terrorist insurgent goons who wanted Fallujah to be their Alamo stored a lot of munitions in hide sites. So when you hit a building, it was like hitting an ammo dump -- because it was an ammo dump.

One of those buildings exploded, and it could have been the bomb, or it could have been whatever ignited all the "bang bang" stuff stored inside the many fortified buildings. But there was one brother Marine that everyone else in the squad referred to as "The Mutant." A bit dim. A bit slow, and only recently attached to the unit. The guy everyone bags on.

So, the building blows up, and "Mutant Marine," as my son affectionately called him, shouts at the top of his lungs, "Burn it down! Burn it all!" What do you suppose made the headline and what our typographers call "the pull quote?"

So, the outfit got investigated for arson, or some other dubious interpretation of the ever-mutating "rules of engagement."

"Arson," my son said, disgusted. "We were in a war zone. Everything was burning. And we're going to be investigated for arson."

So, what about the "good ones?" Galloway related that when you earned the troops' trust, you became "their reporter." They'd kid you, tease you and make free with your booze and smokes if you had them, but they'd put their own lives on the line to protect you.

One such reporter, Gordon Trowbridge of Marine Corps Times, earned such affection and respect from my son's unit. Owned by Gannett, Marine Corps Times publishes entirely independent of the military or the Department of Defense.

"He snored so loud, we really thought we might have to kill him," my son said, jokingly. "Trowbridge snored as bad as you, old man. He was a great reporter. He told it straight."

That's about the highest praise you can get from the troops. And in this war, such praise is rare.





- rem
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 1:07:01 PM EDT
The only big media reporters in Iraq that even act like they're from the same country, much less on the same team as our troops are the Fox News Reporters.

Fuck all the rest of them (Big Media Reporters), I personally hope they all get fragged. Oh yes, and that includes all the reporters and anchors that aren't in Iraq too.
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 4:39:52 PM EDT
MSM REPORTERS, with the exception of FOX NEWS ,IMHO, are the enemy....PERIOD ,end of story.

But don't you DARE , ever question their self proclaimed "Patriotism"But, Democraps And Liberal Media Jihadists "support" the troops........................JUST NOT OUR TROOPS
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 4:46:07 PM EDT
Michael Yon.
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 4:51:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By VooDoo3dfx:
Ain't that the truth... some good ones.. some not so good ones.

A 1st Sarg told me that he prefered the older reporters rather than the younger ones... and steered cleared of the younger ones when they were around.




It,s been my experience that 1SGs are the most stomp-down crazy people on the planet, but they are also the smartest.

I sure take Top's point.
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 4:54:49 PM EDT

Originally Posted By remedy:
THe rest of the article is pretty interesting:



My news daddy and mentor, Joe Galloway, helped get me hired into United Press International a quarter century ago. Now he prowls the E-Ring at the Pentagon as chief military correspondent for Knight Ridder, and we carry his column in the Valley Press.

Galloway, a civilian, was decorated with the Bronze Star with Valor device for rescuing wounded at the battle of Ia Drang. His accounts of the battle form the basis of "We Were Soldiers Once, and Young," co-written with retired Lt. Gen. Hal Moore. Moore was portrayed by Mel Gibson in "We Were Soldiers" and Barry Pepper played Galloway.

With his accumulation of more than 40 years of war reporting, and abundance of combat time, Galloway believes the Bush administration is so far off course in running the Iraq war that a global positioning satellite fix couldn't get them steered right.
Our mutual views do not fall in strict agreement on all matters related to the war, but Galloway's experience and integrity give his views such weight that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld recently hosted Galloway at lunch. Rumsfeld makes no moves without calculating, and the lunch wasn't social. He intended to bust Galloway's chops and "turn" Galloway to seeing the Rumsfeld view of the world.

It didn't work (as he later told E&P's Greg Mitchell for a Pressing Issues column on this site). Galloway is enraged about soldiers shortchanged on armor, sent to battle without the best body armor, sent out on the bad bomb-laden roads in lightly armored vehicles. He's enraged that heavy equipment like tanks and tracked vehicles got left stateside because it's cheaper to run the fuel tab for Humvees than for Abrams tanks, which have high survivability.

If Galloway's wrong, he just wants to be shown where and how. He's enraged that contractors were getting big, fat, dripping war-profiteering profits while the families of GIs and Marines shipped equipment they needed bought from catalogs instead of being issued.

So there was my son, Garrett, during his Iraq deployment. A number of reporters for big name outfits tracked the progress of his Marine grunt outfit during the assault on Fallujah, the fight waged to turn the nastiest center of insurgency into a community with a decent shot for a future. Garrett informed me, "I told my captain, 'I grew up with reporters. They were in the house, and I grew up in a newsroom. I can tell when you've got a good one, and when you've got a bum,' and there was one guy with us who was a bum. I told the captain, 'This guy's gonna burn us.'"

So, I'm getting this second-hand, but the way it went was that the reporter held in low esteem by my media-whelped child did the usual small tricks. Handed out cigarettes, joked a lot, generally ingratiated himself. Bonding with the troops, see.

Stuff was blowing up in Fallujah. Pillars of smoke plumed from buildings hit with joint direct attack munitions, or JDAM, bombs, and from stuff that caught fire from incendiary ammunition. Oddly, the terrorist insurgent goons who wanted Fallujah to be their Alamo stored a lot of munitions in hide sites. So when you hit a building, it was like hitting an ammo dump -- because it was an ammo dump.

One of those buildings exploded, and it could have been the bomb, or it could have been whatever ignited all the "bang bang" stuff stored inside the many fortified buildings. But there was one brother Marine that everyone else in the squad referred to as "The Mutant." A bit dim. A bit slow, and only recently attached to the unit. The guy everyone bags on.

So, the building blows up, and "Mutant Marine," as my son affectionately called him, shouts at the top of his lungs, "Burn it down! Burn it all!" What do you suppose made the headline and what our typographers call "the pull quote?"

So, the outfit got investigated for arson, or some other dubious interpretation of the ever-mutating "rules of engagement."

"Arson," my son said, disgusted. "We were in a war zone. Everything was burning. And we're going to be investigated for arson."

So, what about the "good ones?" Galloway related that when you earned the troops' trust, you became "their reporter." They'd kid you, tease you and make free with your booze and smokes if you had them, but they'd put their own lives on the line to protect you.

One such reporter, Gordon Trowbridge of Marine Corps Times, earned such affection and respect from my son's unit. Owned by Gannett, Marine Corps Times publishes entirely independent of the military or the Department of Defense.

"He snored so loud, we really thought we might have to kill him," my son said, jokingly. "Trowbridge snored as bad as you, old man. He was a great reporter. He told it straight."

That's about the highest praise you can get from the troops. And in this war, such praise is rare.





- rem



Too bad the Bush administration isn't running the war in Iraq. The military professionals are.
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 4:54:51 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/20/2005 4:57:19 PM EDT by raven]
The infamous clip of Matt Lauer trying to lead soldiers into the desired response of saying morale is bad among the troops. The soldiers wont play, and then an officer shoots down Lauer's assumption.

www.mrc.org/notablequotables/bestof/2005/best9-12.asp#11
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 5:02:13 PM EDT
It's easy to tell who the good reporters are. They're the ones who piss on terrorist corpses after they get their pics for the newsroom.
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 5:09:25 PM EDT
I have sorta looked for a job as a war correspondent in Iraq but haven't been able to find anything.

I would definently try to fill the boots of Ernie Pyle. As much respect and honor as our soldiers get, we also need some good journalist to tell the real story.

Link Posted: 12/20/2005 5:35:36 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/20/2005 5:39:39 PM EDT by warlord]

Originally Posted By VooDoo3dfx:
Ain't that the truth... some good ones.. some not so good ones.

A 1st Sarg told me that he prefered the older reporters rather than the younger ones... and steered cleared of the younger ones when they were around.


I believe it, one CNN reporter that video tape a soldier shooting an Iraqi insurgent got court-martialed for murder, but the court later found the soldier innocent. Many reporters don't understand that what is happening in Iraq/Afghanistan is not a Hollywierd movie, this is the real-deal, people are getting killed.
Link Posted: 12/20/2005 5:43:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By raven:
The infamous clip of Matt Lauer trying to lead soldiers into the desired response of saying morale is bad among the troops. The soldiers wont play, and then an officer shoots down Lauer's assumption.

www.mrc.org/notablequotables/bestof/2005/best9-12.asp#11


That whole link is full of world class, USDA Prime mental midgets.
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