Monday, March 27, 2006

Journalistic Standards

One thing that caught my eye last week was a follow-up on the CBS cameraman that was detained by our soldiers in Iraq on suspicion of rebel activity. Apparently, his trial in Iraq has been delayed until next month.

Hussein was taken into custody after being wounded by American forces as he videotaped clashes in Mosul in northern Iraq in April 2005. Doyle said he received an e-mail from the U.S. task force at Abu Ghraib saying Hussein "appeared to be instigating a crowd" in Mosul.

At the time of Hussein's arrest, CBS News reported that the U.S. military said the tape in the journalist's camera led them to suspect he had prior knowledge of attacks on American troops, Doyle said. But more details from the military have been hard to come by, the bureau chief said.

"We've been trying for a year to get information," Doyle said.

CBS spokeswoman Sandy Genelius said Hussein has been held in Abu Ghraib prison just outside Baghdad and faces life in prison if convicted.

"All we are seeking is due process for Mr. Hussein," Genelius said.

I last mentioned this CBS cameraman almost a year ago. I share Mr. Doyle's frustration on the lack of information and Ms. Genelius' desire for due process. As I pondered back in April of 2005, I wonder just how much of this camaeraman's previous footage was obtained by CBS? Where is that footage (if any)? Who has seen that footage? And what did that footage show us? Since clarification of these issues is not yet forthcoming from CBS, perhaps the due process that Ms. Genelius spoke of can draw these answers out.


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