Woodruff coverage

Bloggers, as with the general public, are split on reactions to the coverage of ABC newsmen Bob Woodruff's and Doug Vogt's tragic injuries in Iraq this week.

It should be noted that nobody is trying to downplay the tragedy or belittle Woodruff's and Vogt's situations. The tension, in fact, has nothing to do with their actions at all.

UPI reports:


"Why do you think this is such a huge story?" wrote an officer stationed in Baqubah, Iraq, Monday via e-mail. "It's a bit stunning to us over here how absolutely dominant the story is on every network and front page. I mean, you'd think we lost the entire 1st Marine Division or something."
"There's a lot of grumbling from guys at all ranks about it. That's a really impolite and impolitic thing to say ... but it's what you would hear over here."
(My gripe was that initial news reports I watched mentioned the body armor worn by the two newsmen but made no mention of our leadership's inability (or unwillingness) to provide proper protection for the troops.)

Suzanne Nossel counters resentment over the coverage by arguing that the obsessive reporting may just shine a light on an underreported cost of the war: the injured:
"Depending on how their paths to recovery unfold, Woodruff and Vogt's stories, including the impact on their careers, families and futures could do a lot to draw attention to the plight of others in similar or worse condition. The availability of adequate resources to care for these veterans and their families over time is a question."
This of course requires that media resources go into care for veterans, which is not, as I mentioned above, something we can just rely on to follow. Or is it.

Steve Gilliard reprints a Nightline story exposing the bureaucratic nightmare facing injured soldiers who aren't receiving their pay or whose medical bills aren't being taken care of:
"Fast-working, skilled Army doctors saved his life, as they have so many."
"Slow, bumbling Army bureaucrats would make his life miserable, as they have so many."
"'And the military basically is, like, they turn their back on you, you kind of feel that you've just been used,' Simpson said."
Gilliard writes:
"The warbloggers should be screaming about this, because it is just fucking criminal. People should be in jail for this."
"But they won't. Because paralyzed soldiers, Sgt. Simpson has three young children, don't matter to them. They were all too busy calling Bob Woodruff an idiot on the radio and online today."
"This is why conservative claims of supporting the troops ring so hollow."
(HuffPost, SteveGilliard)

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