TwitterFacebook

McClatchy Reporter Calvan Created His Own Reality

• Views: 1,908

Let’s revisit Bobby Caina Calvin’s blog for a few minutes, because even though he’s now pulled the entire thing offline, what it revealed about mainstream media reporting from Iraq is actually quite important.

LGF reader “Last Mohican” commented on a post by Calvan, on a story he filed about a US strike on Sadr City that purportedly killed children:

So much great stuff in this guy’s blog! Here’s more, about a U.S.-led raid on Sadr City, targeting a Shiite insurgent leader who was hiding there. The Army said that the only casualties were insurgents, but Iraqi police said that a woman and three children had been killed! Our brave, impartial hero set out to tell the story:

…the story that was already being composed in my mind. I was after vivid descriptions that could, if warranted, paint a scene of chaos, anger and grief.

From the nerve center of his operation, presumably some hotel in the Green Zone, our hero expertly attempted to send a woman into the scene of the carnage to gather some really troubling details:

Jenan, a Shiite member of our staff of local reporters, went to work to track down witnesses. She spoke to at least two by telephone. But I pressured her for more. I wanted an interview with a doctor. I wanted quotes from some of the injured, maybe even words that captured the anger and grief of the family of the dead.

Ultimately, the decision was made that it was too dangerous for Jenan to go into Sadr City. So, while our hero did some other important stuff, his Shiite colleague called a few Shiites she knew, and got some good stories about all the Shiite civilians that got killed while our troops were supposedly hunting a Shiite insurgent leader. As Calvan tells it:

We would have to gather the details by telephone. We would have to write around what we could not get.

And “write around what we could not get” was exactly what he did, by golly! Our hero once again stepped up to the plate and did the dangerous, difficult work that a lesser man would not dare to undertake: he spoke to Jenan on the phone, and then wrote a story about what she said, filling in the missing pieces himself, as necessary!

You know, when it comes to the crucially important task of putting our bumbling, incompetent, civilian-killing troops in their place, this brilliant, courageous man will do whatever it takes to get it done. I couldn’t possibly (seriously, I COULDN’T POSSIBLY) say it better than he said it himself:

Ultimately, it is up to us to decide how far we will take our quest for the truth. In has nothing to do with courage or fear. It’s about a mission.

And now after reading that description of Calvan’s blog post, here’s the article he wrote for McClatchy news service, based entirely on second- and third-hand information he got through the courageous act of picking up a telephone: U.S. says Sadr City raids kill 49 militants; Iraq says civilians died.

The gun battles erupted after armored military vehicles, backed by helicopter gunners, arrived on the fringes of Sadr City to conduct a door-to-door sweep for a rogue militia cell leader the United States accuses of masterminding the kidnapping of coalition soldiers and other foreign nationals in May and last November.

The target of the manhunt was neither captured nor killed, the military said.

“It’s the biggest raid in two months,” said Karem Hellal, 45, who was out on the street when the soldiers descended on his neighborhood.

In August, the U.S. military reported killing 32 suspected insurgents during air strikes in Sadr City.

Hellal said gunfire killed a neighbor’s 6-year-old child and seriously wounded the same neighbor’s 2-year-old son.

Sirens wailed as ambulances carried the injured to the hospital. Doctors treated casualties, including children, at Imam Ali hospital, the biggest in Sadr City.

UPDATE at 10/25/07 11:29:40 am:

Also see:

Riehl World View: How Much Of Bobby Caina Calvan Is Made Up?

^ back to top ^

TwitterFacebook

Turn off all ads for a full year by subscribing!
For about 33 cents a day (per month) or 22 cents a day (per year), our subscription option turns off all advertisements at LGF!
Read more...

► LGF Headlines

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Articles

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Pages

  • Loading...

► Top 10 Comments

  • Loading...

► Bottom Comments

  • Loading...

► Recent Comments

  • Loading...

► Tools/Info

► Tag Cloud

► Contact

You must have Javascript enabled to use the contact form.
Your email:

Subject:

Message:


Messages may be published unless you request otherwise.
Tech Note:
Using the Contact Form
LGF Pages

This button leads to the main index of LGF Pages, our user-submitted articles. You can post your own LGF Pages simply by registering a free account with us.

Create a Page

This is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.

Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.

Last updated: 2014-03-07 2:19 pm PST

LGF User's Guide
Recent Pages
Randall Gross
Kansas City, Kansas, Abortion Clinic Closes
One of four remaining clinics in Kansas that provide abortions has closed because its doctor and manager have retired. The Aid For Women clinic in Kansas City, Kansas, closed Saturday and is referring patients to three other clinics in ...

8 hours, 11 minutes ago
Views: 184 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 7 • Rating: 1
Skip Intro
Outside Money Drives a Deluge of Political Ads
WASHINGTON -- An explosion of spending on political advertising on television -- set to break $2 billion in congressional races, with overall spots up nearly 70 percent since the 2010 midterm election -- is accelerating the rise of moneyed ...

8 hours, 17 minutes ago
Views: 137 • Comments: 1
Tweets: 2 • Rating: 2
Rightwingconspirator
Washington, D.C., Handgun Carry Ban Is Ruled Unconstitutional
I agree. Bans are not an option. Jurisdictions like DC will just have to deal with the fact that regulation is the path. Bans don't work. Bans are illegal and unwise. It's simple. we as a society have chosen to ...

1 day, 3 hours ago
Views: 365 • Comments: 57
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 5
Romantic Heretic
Preventing Poverty Not Allowed As A Goal for Charity
The Canada Revenue Agency (Canada's equivalent of the IRS) has told OXFAM Canada that it cannot list 'preventing poverty' as a goal, only 'alleviating' it. The reason is "Relieving poverty is charitable, but preventing it is not." This is just ...

3 days, 5 hours ago
Views: 373 • Comments: 11
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 4
FemNaziBitch
Safer Era Tests Wisdom of ‘Broken Windows’ Focus on Minor Crime
While the apparent chokehold fueled much of the initial public outcry, community leaders have begun asking whether focusing police officers so intently on such petty offenses makes sense in a city that is far different and far safer than ...

3 days, 12 hours ago
Views: 293 • Comments: 2
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
Mentis Fugit
Frisson
Over at the quirky Riddled blog, I encountered this music video link. I have the album, but I had last listened long ago, and I had forgotten the lyrics. The lengthy, moody intro slowly drew me back thirty five years, ...

5 days, 22 hours ago
Views: 230 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
BadExampleMan
The painful futility of war
This makes me furious. These men pledged their loyalty to their country and their country betrayed them. It treated them as disposable, throwing their lives away in a war that was premised on lies, that was chosen gleefully, and that ...

1 week ago
Views: 410 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 1 • Rating: 1
MichaelJ
Mick Fanning Wins J-Bay Open 2014
More: MICK FANNING WINS J-BAY OPEN Finals day for the contest was run in perfect Supertubes conditions. Too bad Kelly Slater and Jordy Smith were eliminated in lesser quality surf - it would have been amazing to have both of ...

1 week ago
Views: 323 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 2
Thrazidun
Paris: Jews Fight Back Against Islamist Mob - Jewish World - News - Arutz Sheva
More: Paris: Jews Fight Back Against Islamist Mob - Jewish World - News - Arutz Sheva

1 week, 3 days ago
Views: 957 • Comments: 5
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 2
GlutenFreeJesus
Gotta love Chicago
Admittedly, I only started following these guys in the past year or two. They have been in the Chicago scene for awhile. And I kick myself after every show for not following them sooner. For any fans of Led Zeppelin, ...

1 week, 3 days ago
Views: 454 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 2
 Frank says:

It was 11 o'clock upon a friday nite...you know that me an' her were feelin' outasite....yeah 20 reds and a big ol' pile of weed...ya know we drank some wine and then we LSD'd...well Chrissy puked twice and jumped on my bike...she said fire it up because you know what I like...then she burned her leg on the tailpipe then and said shiter-ree and puked again.... -- From a series of bootlegs that were recorded i n the 3 European tours that I travelled with during my illustrious military career in Pirmasens W. Germany....11/76-6/79...most of the quotes came from the live titties and beer versions with fz and skinny little terry ted bozio. Definitely in Paris, Stutgart and outside of Kaiserslaughtern ( K-Town )