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Friday, November 30, 2007

Tom Toles to the Rescue

Way back in the early 1980s, I discovered the brilliant editorial cartoonist Tom Toles when he was still at the Buffalo News (perhaps because I hailed from near there) and frequently reprinted his work at the magazine I edited then, Nuclear Times. Now he's at The Washington Post and today he bitingly mocks his own paper's front-page story yesterday that played up completely unfounded rumors about Barack Obama being a card-carrying devious Muslim (then claimed it was doing him a favor by letting him deny it). Check out the cartoon at www.washingtonpost.com and my story here http://www.editorandpublisher.com/eandp/news/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1003679602

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Klein Nachtmusik?

As some of you may know, a controversy surrounding a Joe Klein column in TIME last week has been swirling all week. It's far too complex to detail here but it involves Klein blasting the Democrats for their FISA bill, but he got it all wrong -- then compounded the errors by issuing several completely inadequate "corrections." Today I was first to report on the (qualified) "correction" that TIME put in print to appear in its next issue, appearing Friday.

For the background, go to http://www.editorandpublisher.com, or find the extremely dogged Glenn Greenwald's blog at http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/index.html. Then comment here.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

From Buffalo 1965 to Iraq 2007

Thanks to David Carr for linking to my Dylan column at his always-entertaining Carpetbagger blog at The New York Times today. But surprised he mentioned that "I'm Not There" has already been nominated for a top indie prize. Speaking of Dylan, got a call from England today from a guy doing a book on Dylan's electric tours of 1965-1966 wondering if I'd seen a show back then. I admitted my first rock and roll show ever was November 20, 1965, at Kleinhans Music Hall in Buffalo -- Dylan and the Hawks. (Yes, he confirmed the date was correct.) I'll spare you the whole story, but I did tell him that electric Dylan getting loudly heckled by audiences is no urban legend -- at that show many shouted during the electric set, "We want Dylan" and "Where's Dylan," and someone in the balcony kept ringing a cow bell....I still have the ticket stub....

On a quite different subject, another recent posting on my ongoing study of suicides among U.S. troops in Iraq has inspired an exchange of several troubling letters with a soldier who says he is serving there and knows colleagues who have attempted, or succeeded at, suicide. More on this later as it develops....Meanwhile, watch and listen to Richard Thompson's great "Baghdad's Gonna Kill Me," here:

Monday, November 26, 2007

Surge Success Overhyped? Dylan's "Mr. Jones" Dead?

Plenty of interesting stories today at E&P, including evidence from the New York Times that "intelligence" from Iraq is being twisted again. Meanwhile, a Seattle daily wants Bush and Cheney to vow not to make a penny off Iraq after they leave office. And the reporter who probably inspired Dylan's classic anti-press rant, "Ballad of a Thin Man," has passed away. Comment on any of this here. They're all at:http://www.editorandpublisher.com

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Soldier Suicides in Iraq

For months, E&P has been highlighting the shocking number of suicides among U.S. troops in Iraq -- and veterans back home. Now there is another apparently added to the toll. You can comment here on my article about the latest case, or another current E&P story on Tom Ricks' sober view of the "turnaround" in Iraq.... http://www.editorandpublisher.com/eandp/news/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1003677275

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Dylan, the Movie: He's Not There?

I saw the new Todd Haynes movie -- sort of about Dylan -- "I'm Not There," and wrote a piece about the real-life Bob and the press, which you may find interesting, please comment even if you haven't seen the flick. Here's link to the story, plus video of the legendary clip from "Don't Look Back" of Dylan interviewed by a Time reporter http://www.editorandpublisher.com/eandp/news/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1003677046

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


I will be launching this blog soon, to promote dialogue and discussion, in advance of the March 2008 publication of my book, "So Wrong for So Long: How the Press, the Pundits -- and the President -- Failed on Iraq." Thanks for visiting.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Early Word on 'So Wrong for So Long'

"Greg Mitchell has given us a razor-sharp critique of how the media and the government connived in one of the great blunders of American foreign policy. Every aspiring journalist, every veteran, every pundit—and every citizen who cares about the difference between illusion and reality, propaganda and the truth, and looks to the press to help keep them separate—should read this book. Twice."
— Bill Moyers

"With the tragic war in Iraq dragging on, and the drumbeat for new conflicts growing louder, this is more than a five-year history of the biggest foreign policy debacle of our times—it's a cautionary tale that is as relevant as this morning's headlines. Greg Mitchell makes it clear that Iraq is a case study in bad judgment, from the misguided moves of an administration blinded by its zealotry to a complacent media that too often acted as an extension of the White House press office. Read it and weep; read it and get enraged; read it and make sure it doesn't happen again."
— Arianna Huffington

"In war truth is too often the first casualty, and it is not just a President or a Secretary of Defense or assorted official spokesmen who do the killing. Our brothers and sisters in the media also participate in the execution. Greg Mitchell has taken that as his lesson and in so doing has done a service to future generations in our business."
--Joseph L. Galloway, military reporter and co-author, We Were Soldiers Once...and Proud

"Anyone who cares about the integrity of the American media should read this book. Greg Mitchell asks tough questions about the Iraq war that should have been asked long ago, in a poignant, patriotic, and thoughtful dissection of our war in Iraq. Mitchell names names and places blame on those who’ve blundered. Examining the most complex issue of our time, he connects the dots like no one else has."
— Paul Rieckhoff, Executive Director, Iraq & Afghanistan Veterans of America and author of Chasing Ghosts

“The profound failure of the American press with regard to the Iraq War may very well be the most significant political story of this generation. Greg Mitchell has established himself as one of our country's most perceptive media critics, and here he provides invaluable insight into how massive journalistic failures enabled the greatest strategic disaster in the nation's history.”
— Glenn Greenwald, Salon.com writer and author of A Tragic Legacy and How Would a Patriot Act?