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Sunday, May 15, 2005

WAR, WHAT IS IT GOOD FOR?
Apparently, not primetime television news. As violence rages in Iraq and an all-out civil war seems increasingly likely, the media (corporate, mainstream, liberal, conservative, whatever) is once again failing to care. Last week, ABC News' daily rundown, The Note, made the observation that "brides gotta run, planes gotta stray, and cable news networks gotta find a way to fill a lot of programming hours as cheaply as possible" and while "the death and carnage in Iraq is truly staggering, we are sort of resigned to the notion that it simply isn't going to break through to American news organizations" and "will get almost no coverage."

So while war may make for great video games, and provide some cool fodder for Hollywood blockbusters, the consensus is that it makes for shitty primetime news coverage. ('burning bodies? what burning bodies? we don't see you... lalalalalalalala!') Hey, media types, think maybe you could squeeze a few of these stories in between the Everybody Loves Raymond tributes and the Michael Jackson updates? Maybe its just me, but it seems kinda important.


More nasty surprises await U.S. troops in Iraq
The lull in violence that followed the January elections was taken to mean the rebels were in disarray. If so, they've regrouped, and Iraq has reverted to chaos. Nearly twice as many Iraqi security personnel died in attacks in March as in January. April was almost as bad. May looks worse still.The last couple of weeks have been among the bloodiest since the U.S. invasion, with more than 420 people killed. The insurgents have been mounting an average of 70
attacks a day, compared to 30 or 40 in March.

Demise of a Hard-Fighting Squad
Among the four Marines killed and 10 wounded when an explosive device erupted under their Amtrac on Wednesday were the last battle-ready members of a squad that four days earlier had battled foreign fighters holed up in a house in the town of Ubaydi. In that fight, two squad members were killed and five were wounded. In 96 hours of fighting and ambushes in far western Iraq, the squad had ceased to be.

As Insurgents Gain, Experts See Civil War
An unchastened insurgency sowed devastation across Iraq this week as experts here said the country is either on the verge of civil war or already in the middle of it. With security experts reporting that no major road in the country was safe to travel, some Iraq specialists speculated that the Sunni insurgency was effectively encircling the capital and trying to cut it off from the north, south and west, where there are entrenched Sunni communities.

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MORE
Toronto Star: Americans Kept in the Dark
LAT: Iraq Ongoing Coverage
Iraq: Uncensored
Iraq: Coalition Casualties
Network4Good: Iraq Humanitarian Relief

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