Thursday, March 23, 2006

Background Noise

It's nice to be able to welcome a piece of good news from Iraq. Norman Kember and two other hostages have been rescued. The media will, quite rightly, feature this story heavily. It's good news. And the media will feature it heavily. It'll be on the front page of all of the newspapers. Just to be absolutely clear, I'm not complaining about this. It is right that they make a big deal about this good news.

The point, you've probably already worked out, it that some people seem to believe that the media never report any good news from Iraq. Well, there's a whole lot here.

But what of that other accussation levelled against the media? How much coverage will the bad news from Iraq get in tonight's TV News programmes and tomorrow's newpapers? Reuters Alertnet report the following incidents on 23rd March 2006:
BAGHDAD - A suicide car bomber attacked an Iraqi army patrol near the U.S. Al Asad air base and killed nine soldiers in Baghdad near the town of Haditha, 200 km (125 miles) west of Baghdad.

BAGHDAD - One U.S. soldier was killed in action, the U.S. military said.

BAGHDAD - At least seven people were killed and another 12 wounded when a car bomb exploded in a market close to a Shi'ite mosque in the southwestern district of Shurta al-Khamisa, the Interior Ministry said.

BAQUBA - A roadside bomb targeting a police patrol exploded in western Baquba, 65 km (40 miles) north of Baghdad, killing four policemen, a police source said.

KIRKUK - The chief of the Iraqi army in Kirkuk, Major General Anwar Muhammed Ameen, escaped a roadside bomb attack on a road 45 km southwest of the northern city of Kirkik, Police Colonel Sarhat Qadir said.

BAGHDAD - At least 25 people, including 10 policemen, were killed and 35 wounded when a suicide car bomber detonated his car outside the headquarters of the Iraqi police's major crimes unit in central Baghdad, the Interior Ministry said.

BAGHDAD - A car bomb targeting a police patrol exploded in al-Maghrib street, northern Baghdad, killing three policemen and wounding six civilians, a police source said.

ISKANDARIYA - One policeman was killed and another three injured when their patrol was struck by a roadside bomb in the town of Iskandariya, 40 km (25 miles) south of Baghdad, police said.

NEAR LATIFIYA - Police said that one Iraqi army soldier was killed and another wounded when a roadside bomb was detonated near their patrol on a road between Latifiya and Iskandariya, south of Baghdad. [Possibly the same incident as in the previous report from Iskandariya.]

BAGHDAD - Police said that three civilians were wounded when a car bomb targeting a police patrol exploded in central Baghdad.

BAGHDAD - Two civilians were wounded when two mortars landed on a house in northern Baghdad, police said. The target was not immediately clear.

BAGHDAD - One civilian was wounded when a bomb exploded at a bus station in the eastern New Baghdad district of the capital, police said.
Unfortunately, it was another day of very bad violence.

What prominence will that get in the media? Here's a rough guide. I've just timed the total coverage given to these attacks in tonight's Ten O'Clock News (from the Bush-hating, defeatist, terrorist apologists at the BBC). The programme lasts approximately half an hour. The coverage of the attacks lasted around 10 seconds. Bloody sh*t-stirrers.

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