Tuesday, December 12, 2006

'Grim Milestone' Watch

[posted by Callimachus]

It's back.

"Now, as the nation approaches the grim milestone of 3,000 war fatalities ..."

From an AP story getting big play in my newspaper tomorrow (lede picture on A1, full story inside). This from a paper that could never be bothered to run a story about actual Americans doing anything in Iraq except dying. But has never missed a "grim milestone." This in a country where, as far as I can tell, the sole qualification to be the new Defense Secretary with overwhelming bipartisan approval is to go in front of Congress and the TV cameras and declare to the world America is defeated.

This from an Associated Press whose current photo wire (12/12 11:15 p.m. Eastern) features the following breakdown of "Iraq" photos going back through Sunday:

  • Pictures of U.S. military dead or their funerals: 17

  • Pictures of Cindy Sheehan: 7

  • File photos of U.S. military scattering or aiding wounded comrades after attacks (as part of its year-end round-up package): 2

  • Pictures from the upcoming movie release "Home of the Brave," which will tell "the story of three soldiers who return home to the United States after an unexpectedly gruesome tour of duty in Iraq": 1

  • Pictures of U.S. military in Iraq doing something other than being dead: 1 ["172nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team soldiers greet a young Iraqi boy in central Baghdad's Karradah district, in this Oct. 27, 2006, file photo," again part of the year-end round-up].

Which is pretty consistent for the AP throughout this war. The carnage of Baghdad 2006 arrived in reality three years after the AP began enthusing over it.

Luckily for us, we also can read guys like this. Salute. Not just doing the soldier's job, but the media's as well.