Sunday, September 20, 2009

Winter Soldier coverage

In Thursday's "Iraq snapshot," C.I. noted the community's coverage of Winter Soldier in March 2008. Which raised two issues.


First, we intended to note all the coverage the weekend after Winter Soldier. We never did so let's note it now:

"I Hate The War," "Iraq snapshot," "Jason Hurd (IVAW's Winter Soldiers Investigation),"
"IVAW's Clifton Hicks," "Kelly Dougherty at Winter Soldiers Investigation," "Corporal Eric Estenzo testifies at Winter Soldiers...," "Steve Mortillo at Winter Soldiers Investigation,"
"adrienne kinne reveals the v.a. system," "Nachos in the Kitchen (and Adam Kokesh),"
"Tantrum in the Oval Office" & " THIS JUST IN! INTERVIEW IN THE OVAL OFFICE!" (joint-post), "Katrina vanden Heuvel avoids Winter Soldier," "Saturday's Winter Soldier Investigation," "Truest Statement of the Week," "Editorial: Are you ready to listen," "TV: Nothing-ness," "Veterans Healthcare," "Roundtable," "Negative Critisicm of Winter Soldiers Investigation," "And the war drags on . . .," "Iraq snapshot," "Dahlai Wasfi: Rock Star," "Garret Reppenhagen at Winter Soldier," "Jesse Hamilton Winter Soldier," "IVAW, silence, Hillary," "CounterPunch never heard of IVAW?," "Common Dreams doesn't include Winter Soldier," "Iraq snapshot," "Jesse Hamilton Winter Soldier Investigation," "Iraq snapshot," "The Peter Pans of Panhandle Media refused to cover Winter Soldiers," "Jesse Hamilton, Hillary, Barack," "Video, Hillary's Iraq speech," "Jesse Hamilton Winter Soldier," "Iraq snapshot" and "Ron Cantu at Winter Soldier."

That's an impressive and lengthy lists and there are probably some things that got missed.

We covered Winter Soldier community wide.

At this site, our plan was to cover it the weekend of Winter Soldier (which we did) and also make it the emphasis of the following weekend.

We didn't do the second part.

And we didn't do it for a reason.

Look at the list of all of that coverage.

In all of that coverage you will find only one article that's negative about Winter Soldier.

There seems to be some confusion for some women in IVAW. They seem to think that we owe them something. That we're some sort of community cheerleader or bulletin board and we can never offer anything but positive feedback.

As a result of our negative criticism in an article whose headline noted that it was negative criticism, a woman with IVAW had a hissy fit. She started e-mailing Mike -- about an article that ran here. She e-mailed C.I. She e-mailed everyone and anyone and seemed to think that some of us would turn against the others to stand with her.

The sexual assault panel was a joke. A man asking a woman to dance is not sexual assault. If you don't grasp that, you have serious problems. Those aren't our problems.

We do not exist to glorify you. We practice journalism and we call it the way we see it.

A few months back, we had another probably with a pscyho woman in IVAW. She e-mailed about an article on the ones leaving IVAW, the ones spreading false rumors about IVAW. She hated the article. Fine. That's her right. She can't make demands on us however.

She seemed to think that we owed it to her to supply her with the names of the people quoted in the piece. She wanted to confront them. Ty was stuck answering the psycho. As the e-mails streamed in non-stop (crazy's on duty during this time but apparently the military allows her to do personal e-mails her entire shift), Ty finally called C.I. who explained that woman was a joke and a nut case. We have a history actually with that woman. She came out as against the Iraq War publicly. And a member of IVAW wrote about that online. And C.I. quoted that in a snapshot. The "Iraq snapshot" is posted at every community site that posts that day. So it went up every site that posts on Friday. And then the woman's in a tizzy. She didn't mean to come out, she didn't mean to be public. That 'dumb ass' (Trina received the e-mail and believes that's the term used for the IVAW member who wrote about it) used her name without permission. Trina told C.I. and the two of them went through every community account to pull the woman's name from the snapshot.

Since then, we've tried to avoid that crazy woman.

We didn't mention in the article but, it turns out, she is among the ones trashing Camilo Mejia and trashing IVAW and trashing the decision by the organization to make opposition to the Afghanistan War their official position.

She generally trashes IVAW on right-wing websites where she cozies up to people by insulting IVAW and people on the left. At her own site, she's written some real garbage that was so offensive that she's had to take it down.

And this woman, who knows nothing about journalism and, honestly, nothing about anything, wants to screech and yell at Ty in one e-mail after another, wants to bully thinking she can get her way.

Sorry, that's not how it works.

You don't make demands on us. We never have to supply you with anything.

In both cases, the women should be ashamed of themselves. In one instance, she couldn't deal with the fact that out of all the coverage this community did on IVAW, one article offered negative coverage. It was just too damn much for her. So she thought she could stomp her feet and we would change our article. F**k you. In the other instance, a woman who's made it her life's purpose to out macho any man thought she could lay down the bully line. She can go f**k herself but she has no control and no say at this site. She's an idiot.

But to make it really clear to everyone (our regular readers seem to grasp this), we are independent. We're not faux independent like Amy Goodman or FAIR. We're really independent. If you screw up, we'll call you out if your big media, we'll call you out if your little media. That's our job, that's our role. We're not part of the left circle-jerk which uses their one free hand to point at MSM while ignoring it when the beggar media does the exact same thing.

Our relationship with our readers has always demanded that we call it as we see it. We don't fake it, we don't phone it in. We feel it even on our worst written pieces. We used to say every week that we hope something made you happy, sad, mad, moved you in some way and the reason is because we're not trying to be an echo chamber or a cheerleader. We're trying to address what's going on around us and that's what our readers count on and expect from us after all these years.

Cause through the years

We've been happy

Through the years

We've been sad

And sometimes feeling lucky

Was the only luck we had

But we always found some laughter in the tears

Through the years

-- written by Janis Ian, "Through The Years," appears most recently on Best of Janis Ian: The Autobiography Collection.
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