This column by one Alessandra Stanley in the New York Times, titled “Images of Victory Overshadow Doses of Realism,” is a beauty. Ms. Stanley, no doubt like many others at the Times, is nostalgic for the days–actually, I think it was day before yesterday–when Iraq was another Vietnam, or better yet, another Mogadishu:
“Either victory was at hand, or television had rewound news coverage back to the first, optimistic days of the war. A confident George Bush, hand in hand with the first lady, paid tribute to cheering marines at Camp Lejeune, N.C….Good news got even better: Pfc. Jessica Lynch shifted overnight from victim to teenage Rambo: all the cable news shows ran with a report from The Washington Post that the 19-year-old P.O.W. had been shot and stabbed yet still kept firing at enemy soldiers. In the hands of television, the story had instantly gelled into a heroic made-for-TV war movie, ‘Saving Meg Ryan.’
“Despite all the sobering lessons learned over the past week, there were few images of civilian casualties or dead American soldiers during yesterday’s high.”
Yes, where did all those sobering lessons go? Where are those “doses of realism” that were so pleasing to leftists at the Times? What is all this nonsense about heroism and victory?
“It was not a day to dredge up the risk of suicide bombings or American soldiers accidentally opening fire on a bus filled with women and children. Nor was television in any mood to dwell on the possibility of dangerous urban warfare still ahead.”
Well, don’t worry, Alessandra. There may yet be a suicide bombing or two, and women and children may yet die–far more likely at the hands of the Saddamites, of course, than accidentally at the hands of our troops. And dangerous urban warfare may still occur. If it does, you and your colleagues at the New York Times will be there to welcome the bad news. In the meantime, I guess you’ll have to make do with nostalgia. For the day before yesterday.
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