Latest from Bob Owens
Will Thoretz is the company spokesman for VNU Media, the company that owns Editor & Publisher and employs Editor Greg Mitchell, a man that has something of a "truth problem" according to Michael Silence, and seems to be on the wrong side of an example of "journalistic malpractice" according to Stephen Spruiell.
Mary Katharine Ham of Townhall.com attempted to contact Mitchell at Editor & Publisher for comment several times yesterday, but Mitchell has thus far decline to respond. Ham also tried to contact Will Thoretz of Editor & Publisher's parent company, VNU Media, and while she was able to speak to his assistant, Thoretz has not responded to Ham to date.
Color me skeptical, but evidence indicating that one of your editors
has severe ethical issues should demand an immediate response of some
sort, unless, of course, the decision has been made to stonewall the
story and hope it goes away.
Greg Mitchell, the editor of the influential news trade publication Editor and Publisher has recently raised a spirited defense
against questions and allegations that news may have been staged in
some instances in the recent Israeli/Hezbollah war in Lebanon, may
First published as a weekly in 1884 as The Journalist, Editor & Publisher (E&P) is a monthly journal covering the North American newspaper industry.
Since 2002, Greg Mitchell has been the Editor of E&P, and
he writes both an online and print column. While I've never read the
print version, I have occasionally read Mitchell's online Pressing Issues column, and have actually written about what he has had to say twice in the past.
No matter which party they generally favor or political stripes they
wear, newspapers and other media outlets need to confront the fact that
America faces a crisis almost without equal in recent decades.
Our president, in a time of war, terrorism and nuclear intrigue,
will likely remain in office for another 33 months, with crushingly low
approval ratings that are still inching lower. Facing a similar
problem, voters had a chance to quickly toss Jimmy Carter out of
office, and did so. With a similar lengthy period left on his White
House lease, Richard Nixon quit, facing impeachment. Neither outcome is
at hand this time.
are all over this example of just how lazy Hezbollah has become in
their efforts to provide fake news. The official Hezbollah
(with an appropriate Iranian URL) is showing a picture of a ship being
ripped apart in an explosion. Hezbollah claims that the ship was an
Israeli ship hit by a Hezbollah missile.
The top picture below is the photo as shown on Hezbollah's site.
And Hezbollah did hit an Israel ship, the
INS Hanit, a Saar
5 class missile boat, most likely with an Iranian-made C-701
"Kosar" type missile, on July 14, 2006.
The bottom picture is the INS Hanit (photo credit: Sweetness
Note the damage (most noticeably the scorch marks) near the
waterline directly under the Hanit's
helicopter hanger, roughly three-quarters of the way to the stern. Note
also that while the ship was reported to have serious internal damage
and four Israeli sailors died in the attack, the ship is largely
intact, the keel unbroken, and the ship otherwise, from this view,
externally undamaged, where the ship in the Hezbollah photo to has
literally been broken by the blast, the aft half of the ship behind the
explosion several degrees out of alignment with the fore.
Yes, I'm getting just as tired of this kind of stuff as you are (my bold):
Lebanese civil defense volunteers unload a coffin from a refrigerator
outside the Hakoomy hospital in port city of Tyre, southern Lebanon,
Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2006. At least 842 people were killed in Lebanon during the 34-day campaign, most of them civilians. Israel suffered 157 dead _ including 118 soldiers.(AP Photo/Sergey Ponomarev)
According to the Associated Press "most" (by definition more than
half; at least 421) of those who died were civilians. Considering AP's
recent track record in Lebanon, I'm disinclined to believe their claim.
Their vague figures run in opposition to what we see here from Strategy Page:
On the ground, Hizbollah lost nearly 600 of its own personnel, and billions of dollars worth of assets and weapons.
Ynet News, citing the IDF as a source three days ago, states that 530 Hezbollah members have been killed.
If the Hezbollah deaths cited by StrategyPage and Ynet
are correct and the AP's overall casualty count is close to accurate,
then more than 60% of those killed were Hezbollah fighters, even as
Hezbollah attempted to hide behind old women and children.
Yesterday I quipped that I found Gatorade's new energy Drink
"self-Propel," after discovering a series of three pictures by Reuters
photographer Zohra Bensemra. In those photos, a mysteriously mobile
bottle of water appears and disappears beside an elderly injured woman
that Bensemra said was waiting to be rescued, and was made to appear
The moving bottle and other suspicious elements in the photos lead
me to believe that this series of photos, like so many already
discovered coming from Arab Muslim stringers in Lebanon, were quite
The curious composition of Bensemra's photos continued today, as this one was, err, unearthed in Yahoo's Photostream:
Let's for a moment try to look past the staging elements that we've become accustomed to searching for over the past weeks.
Ignore for a moment the fact that a wounded elderly woman in a
bombed out building is unlikely to be in the kind of physical condition
needed to drag several pristine sofa pillows through the rubble and
make a bed out of them. Look past the fact that she, in her weakened
condition, has found a nearly spotless black blanket in the fine gray
dust of a bombed out building to cover her legs against the 80 degree
cold. Ignore the conveniently-placed bottled water she somehow found
intact and had for the middle photo only.
Bloggers—and to a much lesser extent some media outlets—have paid
considerable attention to specific examples of media manipulation in
the war being fought between Hezbollah and the IDF in Lebanon and
Israel, but we seem be under-covering the overall framing of the
media's coverage, particularly when it comes to the subject matter
chosen for coverage.
This comes into sharp relief when contrasted against the coverage
we've become used to from the war in Iraq, particularly as it relates
to the media coverage allowed and provided by two different
insurgencies in Lebanon's Hezbollah and Iraq's predominately Sunni
In Iraq, we’ve become somewhat used to embedded reporters reporting
from both sides of the conflict with a fairly wide latitude to operate.
Stringers, both print media and photographers, have occasionally
embedded within the insurgency, providing coverage from ambushes and
sniper's nests alike. The insurgents themselves often seem to be media
hungry, filming operations themselves and often releasing the tapes to
the media or producing them on DVDs for public consumption in Iraq and
throughout the Middle East.
By and large, the vast majority of video reporting allowed and
encouraged by the Iraqi insurgency is combat-related. IED ambushes are
particularly popular, often released as montages set to Islamist music
as propaganda videos. The Iraqi insurgents have often seemed intent on
portraying themselves as rebel forces actively waging a war for the
people, whether or not the people would always agree.
Hezbollah, however, seems to be fighting a different kind of media war.
Via a tip from a reader...
Just when you though the media would have learned from USA Today's manipulating of photos of the Secretary of State, the New York Times run a photo in this article that gives conservative Supreme Court nominee Samuel A. Alito a sickly green pallor.