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Thursday, December 06, 2007


Reporters in the Middle East

I've said this before, but I'll say it again. As good a job (compared to the rest of the U.S. corporate media) as McClatchey reporters have been doing reporting on the truth about what's happening in Iraq and elsewhere in the Middle East, even better is to read the (generally unpublished) blogs of two of their best, Baghdad bureau chief Leila Fadel and Cairo correspondent Hannah Allam.

And, as a segue, the other night I had the opportunity to hear another unembedded reporter, Dahr Jamail, speak about his new book - "Beyond the Green Zone: Dispatches from an Unembedded Journalist in Occupied Iraq." I haven't started it yet, but I have heard him do readings from the book (in person the other night and on the radio), and of course I've heard his reports over the years. His is a remarkable story - someone who was working in Alaska as a mountain guide when the invasion of Iraq happened, decided he had passed his own personal "red line" and had to do something about it, and, without the backing of any organization and only minor freelance journalism experience, decided to go to Iraq, hire a translator, and start reporting. I'm really looking forward to reading his book.

I'll close with one quote from Dahr from his talk the other night, in response to a question about how we are ever going to get out of the mess we're in: "It's revolution or bust."

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