Sunday, February 20, 2005

Eason Jordan, the continuing story of bias.

Power Line has heard the mistaken identity explanation for Eason Jordan's remarks but doesn't believe it.
Baker to the contrary notwithstanding, the source of the controversy over Jordan's remarks was Jordan's statement that American soldiers (not "coalition forces") had "targeted" journalists in Iraq, not mistaken them for enemies and killed them. Many readers wrote to point out the basic factual error in Baker's story.
I find it interesting that the "mistaken identity" concept is flatly rejected, as though it's impossible that's what he meant.

Without context, I agree that "troops targeted reporters" sounds very different from "troops mistook reporters for terrorists and killed them." However, in the context of the discussion at Davos, Jordan was trying to draw a distinction between other "collateral damage" (where a reporter is killed by an explosion meant for someone else) and these less common mistakes. In that context, I think that saying "targeted" could still be confusing, but it makes more sense than the statement alone.

Recall Hugh Hewitt writing:
Even at this late hour, it would be useful if commentators on the controversy became familiar with its basic facts.
This is par for the course. I said from the beginning that this story is a matter of Jordan's listeners interpreting him differently, based on their preconceived notions. There can't be consensus when we can't agree on "basic facts."
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