Sunday, May 18, 2008

Dahr Jamail doesn't know how to research

Dahr Jamail's unembedded reporting from Iraq, Lebanon and Syria has allowed us to understand the conflict in the Middle East not from a “Western” point of view (although he himself is American), but from "the ground up", as Martha Gellhorn wrote. His expose of the siege of Fallujah in Iraq is a beacon of modern war reporting.

Well, what do you know, Jar-Jar Thief, er Blinks, won a prize. Unembedded 'reporting' in 2008? Well it's hard to 'embed' from state side. But easy to practice a form of journalistic colonization, eh Jar-Jar Blinks? Like putting your name on reports by Ali al-Fadhily who, for the record, lives in Iraq and can write his reports filed in Iraq all by himself without any 'guidance' from you or credit to you. But there you are at IPS, story after story, getting co-writing credit while Ali's the one risking life and the one in Iraq. We'll guess it's your "White man's burden" to take credit?

You-are-there reporting Jar-Jar can handle. He'd be great on a local news program rushing to and from fires. But anything more complex only demonstrates the lack of training Jar-Jar's had.

We avoid Jar-Jar. Like many, we're ticked off by the fact that he hogs credit for the stories Ali risks life and limb to report, hogs credit from the safety of the United States. (For the record, he raised money to return to Iraq in 2006 but instead got sidetracked by Lebanon and began filing "Lebanon Dispatches" at the site entitled Iraq Dispatches.) But Manuel e-mailed us with the title "Look Who's Lying" and we opened it to find Jar-Jar's "US presidents-to-be in denial." A cute little love note to Barack Obama, of course. And facts didn't matter.

He plays dumb (well, maybe not plays) on what the Iraq Authorization of 2002 was for. (Good thing John Edwards dropped out. Otherwise he'd have to call out Elizabeth Edwards.)

But what stood out most in his factually challenged 'report' was this: "During her only trip to Iraq in February 2005, a helicopter took Clinton to the Green Zone because the highway between Baghdad International Airport and the city was so dangerous." Yeah, Jar-Jar not so smart-smart. He later quotes loony Stephen Zunes whom, our readers will remember, was the idiot popularizing that lie.

Idiot Zunes wrote that idiotic article that Foreign Policy in Focus finally decided to pull due to that error.

Jar-Jar, try research. Actually, try educating yourself about what journalism actually is. It's not copy and paste. We know it's confusing for you. We're not saying you have to get a degree (in anything), we're just saying you need to know how the field you claim to work in actually works.

Does a picture say a thousand words? How about this one.


2002, Jar-Jar. Hillary's been to Iraq more than once. We covered this March 30th in "Crackpot Stephen Zunes expressing Hillary Hatred" and are only surprised that you didn't rip us off, but, hey, it didn't appear at The Common Ills, now did it. If it had, you could copy and paste it and e-mail it to FAIR. You're a bad, bad writer. You sent out your current garbage on May 7th. We see your garbage got reposted around the net including at the laughable Voters For Peace. (That's the unofficial 527 for Obama.)

We also note that for the alleged peace man, Jar-Jar forgets Ralph Nader who is calling for an end to the illegal war and is running for president. (Cynthia McKinney isn't running for president. She's defined "victory" as receiving 5% of the vote.)

Jar-Jar became a joke long ago. Around the time he started thinking he had a right to a byline for stories filed in Iraq even though he's was in the United States. It's no surprise Jar-Jar would play selective with the facts (especially in pretending to call out Barack). Jar-Jar's a Big Boy, big boned, Boy's got to eat! But no one has to take him seriously and, judging by his book sales (or lack of) few read him.

It would probably be less embarrassing for Jar-Jar if he'd bothered to credit loony Zunes but Jar-Jar's a glory hog so he doesn't (even though he quotes Zunes later in the article). Jar-Jar, we suggest you take heed to Aimee Mann's lyrics:

It's not

What you thought

When you first began it

You got

What you want

Now you can hardly stand it though,

By now you know

it's not going to stop

It's not going to stop

It's not going to stop,

Till you wise up.
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