The Discerning Texan
-- Edmund Burke
Sunday, September 07, 2008
The Media's War on America
I see one after another of the mainstream media outlets which have made important contributions to the factual underpinnings of the counter-terrorism effort dropping off that beat. Editors in the print media are shifting terrorism experts on their staffs towards investigations of political candidates. At least three such reporters at three major papers are now chasing Sarah Palin stories (I haven't had time to chase down everybody in "the business"). The move away from terrorism investigations started over a year ago as the print media entered into a long-term decline in ad revenues, but the trend has been accelerated in this election year. It is an unfortunate coincidence that true experts, with some of the best contacts and intel in the private CT community, are being moved out of their chosen fields just as we approach the anniversary of the 9-11 attacks. It's especially disconcerting to see this trend at the very moment when President Bush is committing more counterinsurgency resources to capturing or killing Osama bin Laden and/or Ayman al-Zawahiri before he leaves office, a strategic decision with serious ramifications for relations between the U.S. and Pakistan and other nations in South Asia.
A number of veteran reporters in the mainstream media have broken important stories using sources and methods that the intelligence community could not or chose not to exploit. The broad CT community would suffer a serious loss if these bona fide experts leave the field for any length of time. In the meantime, nonprofit organizations and dedicated blogs have the opportunity and capability to inform the public.