Mysterious Blobs


Last night CNN featured lots of green infrared footage with darkish blobs that the correspondent identified as tanks or trucks or personnel carriers. You pretty much had to take his word for it, and I began to suspect that CNN was running the same loop over and over again. Is this the main benefit of embeddedness?


NEXT: Buckshot

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  1. “Not Dead Yet!”

    Heh-heh. That’s hilarious. And yet, I think that cadaver has had more wives than I’ve had dates.

  2. How can you be so disrespectful of the man who helped launch Perot ’92?

  3. No matter–CNN is being booted out of Iraq today anyway. The Iraqis accuse them of being a “propganda machine.”

  4. hey Quaker120!

    yeah — but for whom is cnn broadcasting propaganda? are there any baby food factories around, ha ha.

    happy friday and wishes for our troops to come home safe, quickly, and victorious!!! we’re proud of and thankful for you!!!


  5. In Gulf 1, the media was a lap dog to the military. Showing endless loops of video game style smart-bomb hits, and reporting every dubious claim at face value (Patriot missile anti-scud effectiveness e.g.)
    I was hoping for more objectivity and less Gee-Whizitry this time around, but I guess war is the ultimate reality show.

  6. That “lapdog” claim is an interesting one, Warren, in light of what Peter Arnett had to say in his essay entitled “Why I Stayed Behind”:

    “My means of communication was the INMARSAT [International Maritime Satellite] phone, a suitcase-sized link with the world. I’d drag it out each evening and aim at the heavens, while dialing into the International Desk at CNN Atlanta. At my end, we crouched in the chill of the evening, ‘we’ being I and at least one Iraqi censor, or ‘minder’ as these censors became called. I prepared a simple, two-minute script that the minder approved, and that I then read into the phone.

    From the first day, I established a procedure that I believe saved my credibility and made my presence in Baghdad a valuable one. That procedure was a question-and-answer routine between the CNN anchor of the hour and me that followed each prepared script. The Iraqis were uncomfortable with it from the beginning because they could neither censor the questions nor my answers.

    The only rule I followed in these Q&A sessions was that I would not discuss matters of military security. Thus I didn’t talk about Scud missiles I’d seen barreling northwards on camouflaged trucks; I didn’t mention the antiaircraft weapons on buildings around the Al Rashid Hotel, and I gave no details on military targets. Why did the Iraqis allow these Q&A sessions? I told them from the beginning that I was risking my life in Baghdad, but I was not prepared to risk my credibility. I accepted the limitations of military security, I said, but I needed the freedom to better explore the phenomenon of being in a capital at war.”

    The man allowed his reportage to be approved and censored by Iraqi officials, and agreed with CNN not to report certain types of news that would have aided the American war effort. So who’s lapdog was he?

  7. Phil,
    Please note, I am not disparaging Mr. Arnett or any combat correspondent that puts herself in harms way and is able to report facts that would otherwise not have been. I am accusing the networks, and also the audience they cater to for that matter, of the sort of total, unquestioned loyalty characteristic of lapdogs. The Baghdad byline, headshot photo imposed over map with low quality sat-phone audio, was all CNN wanted. Whenever anything critical of the US operations (civilian casualties e.g.) surfaced from an ‘inside Iraq’ reporter, they would spend twice as much time poo hooing it afterwards in studio (“Remember he has Iraqi officials monitoring his every word”, “we have no way to confirm any of this” etc.). More to the point, every spoon-fed word uttered at the daily briefings was immediately regurgitated on air.
    My point is that there was no critical reporting of that war, and it doesn’t look like there’ll be much on this one either.

  8. CNN is obviously f*cked. David Neumann has destroyed any real news capability the place ever had. They had Connie Chung and Larry “Not Dead Yet!” King on last night!

  9. what does all the have 2 do w/blobs

  10. EMAIL:
    DATE: 01/20/2004 12:15:38
    ‘May you live all the days of your life.’ – Swift

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