By Jon Whiten
May 12, 2008
In March, on the five-year anniversary of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, the nation’s major news outlets reflected on the war and what led us to the half-decade mark. But few evaluated their own roles in the disaster that has maimed countless Iraqis and U.S. troops, killed hundreds of thousands and, according to economists Linda Blimes and Joesph Stiglitz, could ultimately cost up to $3 trillion.
Fortunately, two new books do examine the media’s role. Greg Mitchell’s So Wrong for So Long: How the Press, the Pundits — and the President — Failed on Iraq (Union Square, March 2008) lays out a timeline of the media’s damning missteps, while When the Press Fails: Political Power and the News Media from Iraq to Katrina (University of Chicago, May 2007), co-authored by W. Lance Bennett, Regina G. Lawrence and Steven Livingston, shows how these missteps are not aberrations, but byproducts of the American press.
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