My latest New Matilda column discusses the structural inability of the mainstream press to hold war governments to account:
The Australian’s Foreign Editor, Greg Sheridan, was upset last week after the routing of the Republican Party in the US mid-term elections and the resignation of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld — followed by news that he, along with others in the Bush cabal, may soon face a war crimes tribunal. ‘There is much tragedy in this,’ he wrote, but assured his readers that nothing much would change in US policy towards Iraq. A few days later, Bush signalled that change would occur soon. For the umpteenth time, Sheridan’s direct line to the White House must have been faulty.
[The Australian’s Editor-at-Large] Paul Kelly told me in July 2006 that, although he opposed the Iraq war in 2003 on ‘strategic’ grounds, critics should be careful not to blame the American intervention for the current chaos. ‘There are risks in mounting that sort of argument … into an excuse or an apology for the present insurgency in terrorism,’ he said. Like his Murdoch colleagues, Kelly seemed incapable of interpreting events outside an ‘us and them’ dichotomy. Was Kelly seriously suggesting that opposing the war on anything other than strategic grounds was giving comfort to terrorists?
My New Matilda archive is here.