Tuesday, May 17, 2005


There has been quite a brouhaha over the story lies printed in Newsweek regarding the supposed flushing of a Qur'an during a prisoner interrogation in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Newsweek's editor tries to explain - on the one hand apologizing, while on the other laying off the blame ... no surprise here.

I found some interesting viewpoints on this around the Blogosphere :

Dusty, the Instapilot, provided a link to Michelle Malkin for the Quote of the Day :

"We're not saying it absolutely happened but we can't say that it absolutely didn't happen either."

-- Newsweek editor Mark Whitaker

Smash takes a close look at the poor journalism, and the timeline, showing that the eventual retraction is largely meaningless.

Blackfive has previous reasons for not reading Newsweek ... As usual, he is ahead of the curve.

ALa at Blonde Sagacity is concerned with the focus on the rights of the terrorist suspects.

Bunker Mulligan muses on hypocrisy, Sgt B rants, Jack talks fundamentals, and Red Guy in a Blue State has second thoughts.

While driving home tonight, I was listening to KVI talk radio. Host Bryan Suits (recently returned from Iraq) was covering the latest update - a retraction of the story from Newsweek. I was interested to hear his viewpoint on these latest events. Since I don't have a transcript of the show, I will try to give just a couple of highlights.

Bryan stated that the White House should not have pushed for a retraction from Newsweek. His take was that the average Muslim citizen in the Middle East isn't really concerned with what Newsweek does or does not write. Rather, those who wish to twist young, radical minds against the United States have already taken advantage of the opportunity. So a retraction means nothing - it will likely go unreported in the region, and will have little positive effect.

He suggested instead that the White House should issue a statement, which should apologize for the potential offense that the purported act represents, while maintaining the position that the investigation of said reports had not found evidence. Bryan's point was that the apology would reach the Islamic world in a way that a retraction has no hope of doing.

I'm still thinking about this...

Clarification -- I am thinking about the potential use for an Apology as Bryan suggests, not about whether Newsweek deserves to be castigated for their poor journalism - that is a given. And, to answer Greyhawk's question, I do NOT have Newsweek in my house.


Kat of TheMiddleGround weighs in with Newsweek: Flushing Credibility down the Toilet...

Over at The Universe and Other Things, AirborneVet points out that Rumors Cause Damage, and that there is a cultural factor to deal wth ...

RUMORS are taken very seriously in the Middle East. They are taken as fact! Repeating these in the media only helps the terrorists!