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June 11, 2003
Those who fail to learn from history....

Are they going to make a posthumous revocation of a Pulitzer Prize? The NYTimes can't catch a break these days with it's 1930's era Prize-winning journalist's record now under close scrutiny by a Pulitzer subcommittee.

The effort was timed to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the famine, which claimed as many as 7 million Ukrainian lives. Josef Stalin's regime created the famine to force Ukrainian peasants into surrendering their land.
[. . . .]
Duranty covered the Soviet Union for the Times from 1922 to 1941, earning acclaim for an exclusive 1929 interview with Stalin.

But Duranty was eventually exposed for reporting the Communist line rather than the facts. According to the 1990 book "Stalin's Apologist," Duranty knew of the famine but ignored the atrocities to preserve his access to Stalin.

Where have I heard this story recently? Hmmm...let me think.

Might have been something about CNN keeping their mouth shut about Hussein's atrocities so they could "keep their access" in Iraq.

Let me ask you. Why is this an act worthy of castigation and even retribution long after the man's death? It's not as though CNN today is having to pay any kind of penalty for their years-long cover-up of the realities of life in Iraq, right?

Maybe the answer is that CNN should be penalized for their virtual complicity?

How old does a scandal have to be before it's no longer a scandal? (I'd guess that as long as it's relevant to the politician's job, as this one is, it's relevant.)

And speaking of accountability, or the lack thereof, British journalist Rupert Cornwell talks about Washington today.

And, partisanship aside (really), I continue to wonder why we don't turn to the Iraqi people to solve the post-invasion problems. It's their country and certainly they know their ways, their needs, and their abilities better than anyone.

We're spending enough on it, after all. You'd think our government would care about doing it right.

Not to knock Iraq, because I'm not intending to do that, but do you know who we should be helping toward freedom and democracy? People who care enough to fight for it themselves is who.

Or, maybe we should help everyone toward freedom although not democracy unless they want it. Really, I don't know. I just know that democracy can't be imposed the way you can impose fascism or totalitarianism.

There have been 300,000 deaths from killer algae and I'm someone who thinks it matters, even if we're talking salmon deaths. This sort of thing makes me worry about the health, or illness of the oceans.

And you could have knocked me over with a feather when I read a column critical (critical!) of GWBush in the OpinionJournal this morning.,

I adore Vanity Fair. It's one of my favorite books. Somehow, though, I have trouble picturing Reese Witherspoon as Becky Sharp.

I'm a fan of JMW Turner's works, so the news that they're finally starting to document the locations of these pieces cheers me up. He created some beautiful, beautiful works.

Then, read Maureen Dowd and smile.

Posted by AnneZook at 09:18 AM