An Irish woman's social, political and domestic commentary
Wednesday, September 21, 2005  

Media missed stories

Thanks to Paddy for this link listing big stories of the year that the meeja missed or under-reported. The one about Iraqi farmers is particularly good.

It reminds me of when a woman I half-know called Kim Bartley happened to be in Venezuela in April 2002 filming in the Presidential palace when it was reported via CNN and then throughout the world that Chavez had resigned and a new 'democratic' government was in place. Scott whathisname, White House spokesperson issued a statement saying this was great. Except Kim had it on film that there had actually been a coup. I think she managed to get a hold of Tom McEnaney, of condom fame, who was working with the Sunday Times at the time and they managed to get the actual facts out. I mean, it was on Channel 4 news that Chavez had resigned and in fact he was being imprisoned and refusing to sign a resignation. You can read more about it here.

What if she wasn't there? Its mad. There is footage of Powell saying that Chavez didn't know too much about democracy. His election was a tad more transparent than Bush's. Anyway, have a look at the site and film if you can. Its fascinating.

posted by Sarah | 20:33 1 comments
Hi Sarah,

She did get me that Saturday night. Funny, I've only ever told the story to one or two people, yourself included. Might make an article some day.

It was very odd. Getting a call on a Saturday night from a friend to say: "I'm in the middle of the counter-coup. You have to tell the Sunday Times. Nobody knows. They have to report it. Every body is writing about the coup but it is the counter coup that's the story."

With a few glasses of wine on board I was a long way from coups in Venezuela, and I don't just mean geographically. But there must be something in our brains which forces us to sober up when it's a national emergency - or your other girlfriend walks into the room.

Anyway I rang up the foreign desk at what was about 11.00. Even as I explained that there main foreign story for the next day was entirely wrong and that I'd just spoken to someone who was with the counter-revolutionaries on their way to the jail to free Chavez, I was also thinking about how the duty foreign editor was likely to react to getting this news from an Irish colleague he'd probably (sorry for the ego intervention, replace "probably" with "definitely" never heard off.)

Anyway the end of the story was that Chavez was restored, the Sunday Times printed a qualified story in later editions.

By the way I think that the site that you refer to about the stories the media has never covered is hogwash. I believe that if you want to criticise anybody you have to be absolutely sure that your facts are right. This is especially true when you are pontificating on the accuracy of reporting.

To make the point I cite one quote from the site linked to.

Most journalists manage to find a quibble or two with Project Censored's list every year, but mostly we just stand there and nod, yep, missed that one, and that one and...

regards and long live the revolution (or counter revolution or what ever you're having yourself)

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