Unconventional thinking about the Middle East.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Policy Snack: Withdrawing the Bureaucrats and the Media from Iraq

This week's post for Hudson-NY: Iraq: Withdrawing the Bureaucrats and the Media.

I should acknowledge that there a few good apples in there, but I believe they are helpless in getting much good done when facing the bureaucracies of State and the CIA. The media, well, are plain crap. I can't think of one foreign journalist who's worked in Iraq for the last six months that I can respect. Once upon a time I had high hopes for the Iraqi stringers and fixers working with the major bureaus in Baghdad, and how they'd use those experiences to build a vibrant and free local press in the future, until I realized that those young Iraqis were being trained by the worst crop of ego-driven, activist reporters the profession has produced in a long time. Internships at the National Inquirer would have yielded better results.

36 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nibras, am taking issue with your sledge of the Brits for ceding power to the Sadrists et al? An exercise in brutal, cynical reality it may have been, but consigning the good citizens of Basra, Maysan etc to the unrelieved experience of sharia law, religious courts and the predations of vicious adolescant thugs had them eventually greeting the Iraqi Army as liberators, did it not? - just as the Sunnis experience of the benign rule of AlqI led them to renounce the jihad?

For sure, the Brits made a lot of mistakes, but in the end it was the Iraqis themselves who had to take the power back into their own hands.

imo, the US/Brit great contribution to the new Iraq was in firstly disbandoning the Baath army and party, then in training the ISF to a level of competence in the face of a relentless insurgency and finally the perseverance of Bush and Blair under extraordinary domestic political pressure to abandon the new Iraq.

Your comments about the Iraqi stringers and fixers was very sad. The performance of the western media in Baghdad plumbed the depths and as a one-time journo gave me pain.

rgds

gj

9:25 PM, November 20, 2008

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nibras,
What do you think of the internet reporters: for example, Michael Yon and Michael Totten?

I've trusted their insights and I'd like to get your feedback if you are familiar with them.

Thanks,

Steve

1:47 PM, November 24, 2008

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The press in Iraq gave the the rest of the western press more reasons to implode - God bless the credit crisis for hastening the demise of the Marxist propaganda machine. It's a silver lining in the cloud.

- sam stolzoff

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