Posts Tagged ‘New York Times’
I was thrown a bit, looking for “Nicholas Christopher’s” columns in the Times, and ended up figuring out that they were talking about this piece, “More Troops Are a Bad Bet” by Nicholas Kristof.
BAD copy editing on the part of the Taliban Info-machine – they spelled the columnist’s name incorrectly, and say the column appeared 22 Oct 09 when it was actually 21 Oct 09.
Tsk, tsk, tsk…
The op-ed mentions a bit of North American history as (I’m guessing) a (poor) way to split the allies (maybe):
Why the Americans are not ready to call their military presence in Afghanistan as invasion and occupation of the country while they themselves called the British military presence in America as invasion? Like (Kristof), the Afghans too ask why we should consider the Americans and Western forces as our protectors whereas they murder our children, women and old men and why should not call them as invaders?
The statement says any surge will be proof the Yanks/NATO’ll be in Afghanistan forever:
If they increase the number of their troops, say, if they send the requested 40,000 troops, it will prove that the Americans want to permanently stay in Afghanistan. It will mean that they have come to Afghanistan to occupy it for ever and this will strengthen the tides of resistance against the invaders.
It closes with a call to the historic (some would say xenophobic) warrior history of the fightin’ Afghans, threatening any surge troops:
This is obvious that the people who have common faith and ideology and grown up on the same soil, will not accept the presence of foreigners on the basis of their natural traditions. The history speaks for the sacrifices offered by them and the war fought by them in the cause of freedom. It will not be possible that the invaders occupy their land under any pretext and ploy and ostensibly extend them a hand of friendship. Expectedly, the invading troops must wait a strong reaction of the people–a country-wide upheaval– which will send jittery into the enemy ranks and they will not be able to find an outlet to escape. Every son of this land of the Mujahideen will revive the epics and adventures of their Mujahid forefathers. They will take up their traditional arms and swords and fall on the retreating enemy to take the revenge.
More nationalism, more anti-Americanism, more typos – the Taliban Info-machine marches on.
This, from a New York Times reporter held for seven months by the Taliban (h/t to Mark at The Torch):
Over those months, I came to a simple realization. After seven years of reporting in the region, I did not fully understand how extreme many of the Taliban had become. Before the kidnapping, I viewed the organization as a form of “Al Qaeda lite,” a religiously motivated movement primarily focused on controlling Afghanistan.
Living side by side with the Haqqanis’ followers, I learned that the goal of the hard-line Taliban was far more ambitious. Contact with foreign militants in the tribal areas appeared to have deeply affected many young Taliban fighters. They wanted to create a fundamentalist Islamic emirate with Al Qaeda that spanned the Muslim world.
But it’s only a “local” threat, right?
If New York Times reporter Simon Farrell, as suggested by “unnamed military sources,” ignored British military advice to stay away from an area where hijacked fuel trucks were bombed by ISAF forces, and two people (a British paratrooper and the reporter’s interpreter/fixer Sultan Munadi) were killed, what is the NYT’s responsibility? This, from Tunku Varadarajan, writing in Forbes Magazine:
“Let us put moral questions to one side and ask what–now–the duty of The New York Times is. What price should it pay for the trouble caused by its reporter? Here’s my answer: If The New York Times really does subscribe to this philosophy–the public’s right to know, the journalist’s duty to be skeptical of authority, etc.–it should reimburse the British government for the cost of the mission to save Farrell …. and compensate the dead soldier’s family. (That it should compensate handsomely the family of the Afghan interpreter who died is not even open to discussion.) After all, the military has quite enough on its plate not to have to worry about extracting reporters from deadly contretemps of their own making.
Farrell took a huge risk on behalf of his for-profit employer to give it an edge in the news business. Afghanistan is an extremely competitive beat; and war and competitive journalism make for a very perilous–and profitable–alloy. So whereas one would be loath to corral and stifle reporters, why can’t there be some financial incentive for journalists to behave responsibly when they venture into battlegrounds? Why not bill publications for the cost of a rescue and require journalists to give half the royalties from any books they write to the military, in the event of a costly rescue?”
The New York Times has shared with the world this shocker of a “scoop”:
“Leaders of the Taliban and other armed groups battling the Afghan government are talking to intermediaries about a potential peace agreement, with initial demands focused on a timetable for a withdrawal of American troops, according to Afghan leaders here and in Pakistan.”