Wednesday, August 13, 2008


Russia-Georgia-Ossetia news comes from diverse Internet sources

by Larry Geller

TV should be the best source of breaking news, but these days they prefer to entertain you. Even CNN prefers “IOC ignores kiddie gymnasts controversy” to hard news from the Caucasus.

Our morning paper has nothing on the front page and only one AP story inside on this crisis that could represent the first Second Cold War clash of the US with a re-emerging Russian superpower.

Fortunately, we have the Web, but this time, the news is coming in from some strange places.

Let me take you on a quick tour of my morning reading. In fairness, no mere newspaper could keep up, but you’d think they’d at least try to let us know about important world events (sigh).

Danny Schechter’s News Dissector blog has emerged not only as a leading source of commentary, but occasionally of hard news as well. Danny is the best source of information from Col. Sam Gardiner, perhaps the only political commentator on the planet without a blog of his own. Here’s a sample of what you’ll find when you visit Danny’s website:


Don’t miss the article on “US fleet steams to Iran.” Be the first on your block (or even in the state) to learn what progress is being made by our president in destroying world peace and limiting oil supplies even more.

Now, how better to find out what we are flying into Georgia than to check in with the Air Force Times?

Air Force Times

Don’t miss the part that while the Russian order is to end all military operations, the US is preparing to fly supplies there. The US just flew 2,000 Georgian troops back home from Iraq/Afghanistan, now some supplies for them. Don’t count on a newspaper for this news, count on the Air Force. They may have more on this later today.

Well, what about TV? Where to turn, if CNN is obsessed with Olympic coverage while the world continues to burn?

Google increasingly comes up with Al Jazeera as a news source. In this snippet from Google News, we notice that Al Jazerra seems to have a reporter on the scene. In fact, they’re the new CNN. But the networks won’t let you see this on your big screen, so check out Google News. Example:

Cease fire no way

As you might deduce even from this Google snippet, stuff is happening, and it’s not good news.

Would you like to see some scary Russian tanks rolling into action? Again, the folks on the ground are Al Jazeera:

Ugly side of Russia

So the story unfolds.

While the world burns, today’s Advertiser spends front-page space and a big inside spread sending you to their new web attraction, which has nothing to do with news. Where there used to be cheap gadget info and tips on the Classified section page, now they print partial blog posts hoping crudely to entice you to put down your paper altogether and just go to their website. (I find giving me half a story and then dropping it to be insulting. Maybe it’s just me.)

I was wondering, given the light weight of the paper these days (this has two interpretations, of course), if they are planning to stick around at all as a print medium.

So, apparently, does Frank DeLima, in a video mentioned today by Ian Lind:


While you’re over at Ian’s blog, check out his discussion of disappeared gang news. Ian has raised the question of increased gang activity several times, but try and find something on this in the daily papers. Ian’s blog may be the best way to keep in touch with the gang problem, at least until the papers notice him and wake up to the issue.

If the Advertiser keeps sending us from their pages to the Web, who says anyone is going to come back?? As I think I’ve shown a bit here, there’s real news out there, quick, comprehensive, and complete, out there to inform you.

Dear Advertiser: show me why I should continue to read your paper, not why I should go to the web. And I’m very serious about this.

Unless maybe you going leave us now?


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