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Where have all the embeds gone?


 

Matthew Fisher asks a very good question:

At any one time in 2006, when the Canadian military formally launched its embed program in Kandahar, and throughout 2007 and 2008, between 10 and 15 journalists were always embedded in Kandahar to chronicle Canada’s first major combat mission in half a century.

However, for the first time since the formal embed program was established in Kandahar just over five years ago, only two reporters are embedded with the troops today — yours truly from Postmedia News and a journalist from The Canadian Press.

You would think that this would be the ideal time for journalists to assess Canada’s military and diplomatic triumphs and failures in Kandahar and to provide insights into the Harper government’s controversial new training mission, which is soon to begin in northern Afghanistan.

But Canadian editors obviously have different priorities. For them — although certainly not for the soldiers and their kin or Canadian taxpayers, Afghanistan is yesterday’s war.


 
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Where have all the embeds gone?

  1. We've always been at war with Eastasia…. have some more Soma.

  2. Where have all the embeds gone?

    Playing on twitter, everyone.
    When will they ever learn?
    When will they ever learn?

  3. We've always been at war with Eastasia…. have some more Soma.

    • I think you're getting your novels mixed up.

      • Yup….on purpose. They work well together.

  4. Where have all the embeds gone?

    Playing on twitter, everyone.
    When will they ever learn?
    When will they ever learn?

  5. What did the embeds tell us when they were there?

    That the Stanley Cup was visiting. That Tim Hortons was on base. That there was a ball hockey tournament. That another soldier had died from an IED and that there was another Ramp Ceremony.

    Nothing about what the actual day-to-day activities of the soldiers outside the wire was. Nothing about the dangers encountered. Nothing about contact with the local population.

    Canadians have not been kept informed on what is truly happening "over there" (with a few journalists proving to be the exception to the rule) and as such they don't have much of a connection to the sacrifice that has been made in Afghanistan.

    To get a glimpse of what the soldiers are doing to cut the tension/boredom take a look:

    [youtube NZHcaJj1h54 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZHcaJj1h54 youtube]

  6. What did the embeds tell us when they were there?

    That the Stanley Cup was visiting. That Tim Hortons was on base. That there was a ball hockey tournament. That another soldier had died from an IED and that there was another Ramp Ceremony.

    Nothing about what the actual day-to-day activities of the soldiers outside the wire was. Nothing about the dangers encountered. Nothing about contact with the local population.

    Canadians have not been kept informed on what is truly happening "over there" (with a few journalists proving to be the exception to the rule) and as such they don't have much of a connection to the sacrifice that has been made in Afghanistan.

    To get a glimpse of what the soldiers are doing to cut the tension/boredom take a look:

    [youtube NZHcaJj1h54 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZHcaJj1h54 youtube]

    • Journalism has changed with the internet. Anyone can post information and with a little due dilligence you can get a more factual recording of events.

      Here is a blog from a former US Marine who spent years training Afgan police. He is now out of the military and can now post some of his experiences. He comes across as matter of fact and I found his teaching experiences quite interesting. He also has a Taliban song.
      http://silkroadsandsiamesesmiles.com/2011/01/16/t

    • Anon pretty well nails the topic. The coverage from the embeds was really awful. I can't rtemember how many times we had to read about how we were single-handedly winning this war and cleaning out all the "scumbags". The Taliban were all but routed, and every season the media all but declared victory anew. If they went back and looked at the coverage from the time we went into the south until the last year or so, most of the embedded reporters should feel embarrassed. They were mostly just shills for DND, the military and the war lobby.

  7. This part of Mr Fisher's piece is brave indeed:

    " …
    As for the French-Canadian media, they have shown as little interest in the Afghan war as they did in Canada's participation in the First World War, Second World War and the Korean War.

    Although two French-Canadian generals have directed Task Force Kandahar, another French-Canadian general ran the war in the South in 2008, and three Van Doo battalions supported by other Quebec-based regiments, have fought and died here, only a handful of French-Canadian journalists have shown up and none has stayed very long.

    The almost total absence of journalists from Quebec throughout Canada's nearly decade-long involvement in Afghanistan is something that has deeply disappointed the French-speaking troops. They have often bitterly remarked that almost the only interviews they have ever given here have been in English, while networks such as Radio Canada have spent years spending small fortunes covering events in Europe and the Middle East.

    But frankly, since 2009, much of the English-speaking media have done little better than their French colleagues…"

    And it looks like only one Postmedia paper actually ran the story, chickens: http://www.google.com/search?q=%22almost%20total%

    Mark
    Ottawa

  8. This part of Mr Fisher's piece is brave indeed:

    " …
    As for the French-Canadian media, they have shown as little interest in the Afghan war as they did in Canada%E2%80%99s participation in the First World War, Second World War and the Korean War.

    Although two French-Canadian generals have directed Task Force Kandahar, another French-Canadian general ran the war in the South in 2008, and three Van Doo battalions supported by other Quebec-based regiments, have fought and died here, only a handful of French-Canadian journalists have shown up and none has stayed very long.

    The almost total absence of journalists from Quebec throughout Canada%E2%80%99s nearly decade-long involvement in Afghanistan is something that has deeply disappointed the French-speaking troops. They have often bitterly remarked that almost the only interviews they have ever given here have been in English, while networks such as Radio Canada have spent years spending small fortunes covering events in Europe and the Middle East.

    But frankly, since 2009, much of the English-speaking media have done little better than their French colleagues…"

    And it looks like only one Postmedia paper actually ran the story, chickens: http://www.google.com/search?q=%22almost%20total%

    Mark
    Ottawa

  9. This part of Mr Fisher's piece is brave indeed:

    " …
    As for the French-Canadian media, they have shown as little interest in the Afghan war as they did in Canada's participation in the First World War, Second World War and the Korean War.

    Although two French-Canadian generals have directed Task Force Kandahar, another French-Canadian general ran the war in the South in 2008, and three Van Doo battalions supported by other Quebec-based regiments, have fought and died here, only a handful of French-Canadian journalists have shown up and none has stayed very long.

    The almost total absence of journalists from Quebec throughout Canada's nearly decade-long involvement in Afghanistan is something that has deeply disappointed the French-speaking troops. They have often bitterly remarked that almost the only interviews they have ever given here have been in English, while networks such as Radio Canada have spent years spending small fortunes covering events in Europe and the Middle East.

    But frankly, since 2009, much of the English-speaking media have done little better than their French colleagues…"

    And it looks like only one Postmedia paper actually ran the story, chickens: http://www.google.com/search?q=%22almost%20total%

    Mark
    Ottawa

  10. This part of Mr Fisher's piece is brave indeed:

    " …
    As for the French-Canadian media, they have shown as little interest in the Afghan war as they did in Canada's participation in the First World War, Second World War and the Korean War.

    Although two French-Canadian generals have directed Task Force Kandahar, another French-Canadian general ran the war in the South in 2008, and three Van Doo battalions supported by other Quebec-based regiments, have fought and died here, only a handful of French-Canadian journalists have shown up and none has stayed very long.

    The almost total absence of journalists from Quebec throughout Canada's nearly decade-long involvement in Afghanistan is something that has deeply disappointed the French-speaking troops. They have often bitterly remarked that almost the only interviews they have ever given here have been in English, while networks such as Radio Canada have spent years spending small fortunes covering events in Europe and the Middle East.

    But frankly, since 2009, much of the English-speaking media have done little better than their French colleagues…"

    And it looks like only one Postmedia paper actually ran the story, chickens: http://www.google.com/search?q=%22almost%20total%

    Mark
    Ottawa

      • Not me, Mr Fisher on the ground. One incident, in a risk all embeds take outside the wire, does not negate his overall point.

        Mark
        Ottawa

      • Anon, by pointing to a single CBC article about an embedded French Canadian journalist – from 2007 – you pretty much confirmed that entire Fisher piece.

    • You beat me to it Mark, was about to post the same thing. What is really sad is Lieutenant-General Charles Bouchard is currently in charge of the NATO no-fly zone over Libya. You would think they would be proud of their accomplishments and the history of the French-Canadians in the military.

  11. I heard Fisher's interview yesterday on the radio, and it was interesting what he had to say.

    Globe and Mail hasn't had reporters in Afghanistan for more than a few days this year, Fisher said, yet, the Globe and Mail is constantly saying how badly this war has gone and is still going badly for the Canadian military. Fisher said, those newspaper columnists don;t even understand what's going on anymore, yet talk about it all the time.

    Idem dito for CTV and now CBC is no longer on the ground there either. Only Canwest and CP.

    What a distortion of events unfolding.

  12. I heard Fisher's interview yesterday on the radio, and it was interesting what he had to say.

    Globe and Mail hasn't had reporters in Afghanistan for more than a few days this year, Fisher said, yet, the Globe and Mail is constantly saying how badly this war has gone and is still going badly for the Canadian military. Fisher said, those newspaper columnists don;t even understand what's going on anymore, yet talk about it all the time.

    Idem dito for CTV and now CBC is no longer on the ground there either. Only Canwest and CP.

    What a distortion of events unfolding.

    • The Globe has become a slightly upscale version of the Toronto Star. Nothing more. Their coverage of this election has only proved to me (like I needed more convincing) what a worthless rag they are. When gossip columnists like Jane Taber are counted on for sober analysis, you know you're in trouble. Christie Blatchford reached her best before date when she departed the NP. She's not even interesting anymore, at least not her Globe articles. Don't even get me started on the double dose of monotony that is Ibbitson & Simpson. That one-two punch could cure anyone's insomnia.

      The only decent voice they have is Adam Radwanski. He's that rarest of beasts: an unabashedly progressive journalist who does not allow his political leanings to cloud his judgement or his commentary. (How many scribes can you say that about, regardless of political stripe?) He stands out in the G & M the way Chantal Hebert stands out in the Toronto Star – as their one legitimate columnist.

      The Globe Business section is yet another level of deplorability. (Is that a word? I like it. Deplorability.) It has become a cheerleader for the reckless money-printing central bankers, paper pushing debt merchants, assorted financial product pimps and fossilized Keynesian kooks. Anyone who follows the investment advice given in the G & M will soon be broke, if they aren't already.

      Did I mention I don't much like the Globe & Mail anymore?

  13. Journalism has changed with the internet. Anyone can post information and with a little due dilligence you can get a more factual recording of events.

    Here is a blog from a former US Marine who spent years training Afgan police. He is now out of the military and can now post some of his experiences. He comes across as matter of fact and I found his teaching experiences quite interesting. He also has a Taliban song.
    http://silkroadsandsiamesesmiles.com/2011/01/16/t

  14. You beat me to it Mark, was about to post the same thing. What is really sad is Lieutenant-General Charles Bouchard is currently in charge of the NATO no-fly zone over Libya. You would think they would be proud of their accomplishments and the history of the French-Canadians in the military.

  15. I'm glad we don't get to hear about Afghanistan all the time. The general population seems opposed to the mission (it isn't a war) so the less we hear the less people oppose it.

    People don't understand the mission so their opposition is pointless. Ignorance is bliss when it comes to this.

  16. I'm glad we don't get to hear about Afghanistan all the time. The general population seems opposed to the mission (it isn't a war) so the less we hear the less people oppose it.

    People don't understand the mission so their opposition is pointless. Ignorance is bliss when it comes to this.

    • I was gratified to see that no matter how hard the government, military and defense lobby tried to sell this war, that a majority of Canadians consistently remained opposed.

      I don't think this happened because people did not understand what was going on. I think it happened because they did understand what was going on, and knew that the mission was pointless and that no good would come from it.

  17. Anon pretty well nails the topic. The coverage from the embeds was really awful. I can't rtemember how many times we had to read about how we were single-handedly winning this war and cleaning out all the "scumbags". The Taliban were all but routed, and every season the media all but declared victory anew. If they went back and looked at the coverage from the time we went into the south until the last year or so, most of the embedded reporters should feel embarrassed. They were mostly just shills for DND, the military and the war lobby.

  18. I was gratified to see that no matter how hard the government, military and defense lobby tried to sell this war, that a majority of Canadians consistently remained opposed.

    I don't think this happened because people did not understand what was going on. I think it happened because they did understand what was going on, and knew that the mission was pointless and that no good would come from it.

  19. Not me, Mr Fisher on the ground. One incident, in a risk all embeds take outside the wire, does not negate his overall point.

    Mark
    Ottawa

  20. I think you're getting your novels mixed up.

  21. Yup….on purpose. They work well together.

  22. The Globe has become a slightly upscale version of the Toronto Star. Nothing more. Their coverage of this election has only proved to me (like I needed more convincing) what a worthless rag they are. When gossip columnists like Jane Taber are counted on for sober analysis, you know you're in trouble. Christie Blatchford reached her best before date when she departed the NP. She's not even interesting anymore, at least not her Globe articles. Don't even get me started on the double dose of monotony that is Ibbitson & Simpson. That one-two punch could cure anyone's insomnia.

    The only decent voice they have is Adam Radwanski. He's that rarest of beasts: an unabashedly progressive journalist who does not allow his political leanings to cloud his judgement or his commentary. (How many scribes can you say that about, regardless of political stripe?) He stands out in the G & M the way Chantal Hebert stands out in the Toronto Star – as their one legitimate columnist.

    The Globe Business section is yet another level of deplorability. (Is that a word? I like it. Deplorability.) It has become a cheerleader for the reckless money-printing central bankers, paper pushing debt merchants, assorted financial product pimps and fossilized Keynesian kooks. Anyone who follows the investment advice given in the G & M will soon be broke, if they aren't already.

    Did I mention I don't much like the Globe & Mail anymore?

  23. Anon, by pointing to a single CBC article about an embedded French Canadian journalist – from 2007 – you pretty much confirmed that entire Fisher piece.

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