The Jade Monkey

I didn't have a superiority complex until inferior people gave me one.

Location: San Antonio, Texas, United States


Eyewitness to Propaganda

Let me begin by saying this: I like Tom Brokaw; I think he is by far the best and least biased of the three major network newsanchors (that said I'd take Brit Hume over all three of them together any day of the week).

But Friday's retrospective, "Eyewitness to History", was slanted, to say the least, in terms of the topics it covered and the amount of time devoted to those topics. He spent more time talking about AIDS than 9/11 ferchrissakes. Don't get me wrong; it is not that I feel AIDS isn't an important issue, nor is it that I fail to realize that 9/11 is a more 'recent' event and has been covered by a vast - and deserved - deluge of journalism, and thus, under one reasonable way of thinking, could be evoked more fully in less time. Nor do I doubt AIDS is a compelling human interest story. But are the lives of 9/11 survivors and victims any less so? Can anyone seriously argue that there is any story more important in our recent history, in either a geopolitical or a symbolic way, than the attacks of 9/11 and the resultant War on Terror?

He gave the Civil Rights movement due coverage, perhaps the only 'event' in his tenure I would consider to be as important, although on the domestic front, not the global. One could certainly say that the fall of the Berlin Wall is something of an equal, but even though Brokaw did spend a little time on the subject, he managed to withhold Reagan's powerful "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!", for so many the quintessential crystalization of the moment itself and of the victory of democratic capitalism over totalitarian communism in its entirety, until after the commercial break dividing the segment, leaving the impression he would ignore it completely, much to my disbelief. The fact that he deigned to include it eventually did little to mitigate burying it in the first place. Still he gave more attention to it than to 9/11, and how anyone who was a witness to both events could not only not give them at least equal rank, but not even see the parallels to that struggle and the one we currently find ourselves engaged in, is beyond me, especially when that 'anyone' can praise the Greatest Generation and it's defeat of Nazi Germany and yet condemn the direct heirs of that Generation, who defeated Soviet Communism and now combat Islamic Fascism.

And even if one did say 9/11 wasn't as important, and wasn't analogous, could that same person, even in the short time given it, fail to mention even once the efforts of President Bush in wake of the tragedy? Yet Brokaw managed to do just that. In fact, the only time he mentioned Bush at all was in relation to the 2000 election - complete, as all leftist hit pieces should be, with the myth that it was decided by the Supreme Court - with the snippy quote, "[Bill Clinton]'s not going to be president on January 20, I am."

Nor did he once, in the extraordinary length of time devoted to the AIDS crisis, mention the unprecedented amount of aid the Mysteriously Absent Mr. Bush has given to fighting the disease in Africa, a commitment for which the singer Bono, no fan of the President's on other issues, has praised him.

No, he decided to focus on AIDS, on Watergate, on the vindication of Clinton's escapades and the vilification of his Republican oppressors, on Vietnam (with the thinly veiled attempt to cast Iraq in the same light which all leftists attempt; an attempt magnified by the highlight of a mere 2 wounded in one battle during Desert Storm, but thwarted somewhat by the admission of the enormous cost of Vietnam - no doubt a symptom of the muddled desire to at once demonize the Vietnam war effort and compare it to the current war in Iraq, despite the latter's vastly smaller toll), and on gloating about how he knew Iraq wouldn't be as easy as some thought (we'll ignore for the moment how distasteful gloating about the deaths of our men and women in uniform is in favor of pointing out another favorite tactic of the left, which is to attribute to the Bush administration the position that Iraq would be a cakewalk, despite it's repeated insistance that it would be a difficult but worthwhile struggle that would take time and sacrifice. The only people who thought war would be short or bloodless, it seems, are the leftists themselves, or at least the cartoonish, chimerical representations they like to set up of the administration).

Perhaps, given the media's penchant for editorializing current events even more than it does history, I should be thankful every mother's advice that "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all" was followed for the most part.

Nevertheless, I expected better from you, Mr. Brokaw.


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