Extra! July/August 1999

    Chris Matthews: Testosterone Overdose?

    CHRIS MATTHEWS: Has a country ever won a war by avoiding enemy casualties? Isn't that what we're doing? We're blowing up bridges that are dark and buildings that are empty, and killing a few night watchmen who are dumb enough to show up for the midnight shift. But it's a strange war we're fighting - why is [President Clinton] avoiding casualties on the other side? *** MATTHEWS: [Clinton] is about to dump this war on Madeleine Albright. He's about to blame this war on this poor secretary of state, who basically is his staffer. SEN. JOHN McCAIN (guest): Yeah. MATTHEWS: ...


    'Perp Walks' and Ride-Alongs

    The "perp walk," in which recent arrestees are paraded for news cameras, and the "ride along," in which media accompany cops on the job, are standard features of mainstream media's reporting on crime. But both practices, which involve close relationships between reporters and police, have been challenged by courts in recent months. Media aren't dedicating much coverage to these legal questions about how they do their job. What reporting has appeared has been an oddly theoretical discussion, sidestepping basic questions and relying on frequent references to a "watchdog" press corps: intrepid, critical, responsible--and wholly unrecognizable to any regular consumer of ...


    A Mote in Their Eye

    Felicity Barringer, the New York Times media reporter (“Week in Review,” 4/25/99), scolded editors for publishing an Agence France Press photo of a corpse in Kosovo, an Albanian refugee killed by a NATO bomb, without adequately warning that the Serbs could have arranged the body for dramatic effect. She quoted a CBS news executive who pointed out that with regard to news put out on our side, “You’re able to challenge and question and dig back and check in with sources.” The front page of the same “Week in Review” section carried a handsome color photo, also from AFP, taken ...


    'I'd Take Them Out With Sex'

    It's hard to find a way to worsen the horror of the school shootings in Littleton, Colorado, but Howard Stern found it--just one day after the murders, on his April 21, 1999 radio show (syndicated by Infinity Broadcasting, a CBS subsidiary). While considering the motives of the male students who murdered 12 classmates and one teacher, the "shock jock" mused: "There were some really good-looking girls running out with their hands over their heads. Did those kids try to have sex with any of the good-looking girls? They didn't even do that? At least if you're going to kill yourself ...


    Redefining Diplomacy

    On March 23, U.S. envoy Richard Holbrooke was in Belgrade to deliver a final ultimatum to Yugoslavian President Slobodan Milosevic: Sign the Rambouillet plan--the document that emerged from the three-month-long talks in France between the Yugoslavian government, ethnic Albanians and the five-nation Contact Group--or be bombed. Milosevic's government refused to ratify the plan, which envisioned a very high degree of autonomy for Kosovo, enforced with NATO troops. On March 24 the bombing began. But in the media, March 24 also marked the beginning of a remarkable process of historical revision in which the picture of the previous three months of ...


    Legitimate Targets?

    NATO justified the bombing of the Belgrade TV station, saying it was a legitimate military target. "We've struck at his TV stations and transmitters because they're as much a part of his military machine prolonging and promoting this conflict as his army and security forces," U.S. General Wesley Clark explained--"his," of course, referring to Yugoslavian President Slobodan Milosevic. It wasn't Milosevic, however, who was killed when the Belgrade studios were bombed on April 23, but rather 20 journalists, technicians and other civilians. Clark's logic is exactly the same as that of the death squad commander who orders the assassination of ...



Articles in the print edition

The Monsters on Page One

A Mote In Their Eye

Time Changes Tune On KLA's Heroin Money

NATO's "Astonishing" Radioactive Weapons

Taking Sides

Everyone's Getting Rich!

Holocaust Relativism

Trapped in Belgrade