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Nice job, CNN. Not so much, FOX.

By happenstance I had to be in DC this week for meetings etc. I arrived at my hotel (a lovely historic one near Dupont Circle) on Sunday evening shortly after 10pm, just in time to turn on the television and be confronted by FOX and Geraldo Rivera's dulcet tones as he said, "...and we don't know what the President will say, but we know it's not a nuclear strike because..."

I nearly fell out of my chair. Way to start rumors, Mr. 70's Mustache Man.

So then I got to sit there for half an hour ALL BY MYSELF, racking my brains to figure out WTF might be going on. Comic relief came in the form of Wolf Blitzer being handed a sheet of paper and saying, "I've been told I can read this, so reading from what has just been handed me, the President will be announcing that -- uh, wait...I can't read it? I can't read it. Can I say it involves something overseas? No, apparently I can't say that either. I'm sorry, we're holding off on reading this until we get confirmation..."

Imagine that: responsible journalism and a refusal to spread unsubstantiated rumors. (Unlike Geraldo, obviously just spouting whatever exciting phrases pop into his head...)

Oddly enough, it never once occurred to me it would be about bin Laden. He'd pretty much fallen off my radar for quite a while, and after all that's happened in the Middle East over the last few weeks, he seems more irrelevant than ever. While I'm certainly not unhappy he's no longer out there plotting, I have to say that it was a bit disconcerting to see people dancing for joy over his death. I sympathize, I understand, I by no means condemn; still, I can't help but feel that sober relief and quiet gratification would be preferable to gleeful leaping about in celebration. A mob celebrating someone's being killed is no prettier a sight here than it is in Afghanistan or Iraq. Where is the line between justice and vengeance? I don't know. All I can think of is the 3,000 dead on 9/11 and how this won't bring them back. It seems a curiously hollow victory, after all these years.

Not sure how I feel about the not releasing of photos. The moral high road, I suppose; classy, but very very risky. Then again, people who don't believe it was ObL probably wouldn't believe photographs either, so maybe it doesn't matter that much.


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May. 5th, 2011 10:38 am (UTC)
Thank you. I was also a bit uncomfortable with the reaction - I mean, I get it, but it seemed a bit barbaric in some ways. It was a weird, weird day.
May. 5th, 2011 02:14 pm (UTC)
I was actually depressed on Monday by the excessive celebrations. I woke up to my radio station broadcasting the "hey hey good bye" song that people were singing outside the White House. Yeah, classy. It just went downhill from there as I read comments on the newspaper and here on LJ.

We're such a bloodthirsty nation, it's scary and sad. Not a legacy I'd want to leave to my kids, if I had them.
May. 6th, 2011 12:29 am (UTC)
Watching Fox News makes me consider how much I would really rather be doing anything else. Like stabbing an ice pick into my eye.
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