Can someone help me understand this? I know the easy answer, which is that the US media is pathetic in their pandering to the lowest (in this case, shiny-happiest) common denominator, but this reads like two totally different incidents...
Two reports of today's car bomb - the Independent's makes it sound like a volatile situation, ready to erupt into chaos. CNN's is a mechanical recitation, almost a verbatim quote from the US military, of facts and figures along with the official party line on how things are getting better.
Is this US media really this anemic? Does the Independent UK have a political bias they are skewing toward?
I'm almost afraid to read the answers...
From the UK Independent...
Further 47 die after terrorists spark fear of civil war in Iraq
By Justin Huggler
11 February 2004
A car bomber killed an estimated 47 people in Iraq today in the second deadly attack in two days on Iraqis working with the US-led coalition.
Nervous American soldiers sealed off the compound where the blast occurred with razor wire, taking up positions kneeling on the ground, a few metres from an angry crowd of Iraqis. The Iraqis were blaming the Americans for the explosion, and the soldiers had their fingers on their triggers.
According to the local police commander, Lieutenant-Colonel Abd al-Rahim Saleh, the explosion was caused by a red pick-up truck packed with an estimated 500lb of explosives. The driver set off the explosives as he passed the police station. ...[T]he official version...was not accepted by the Iraqis on the scene. To a man, all the witnesses we spoke to claimed the blast was caused by an American air strike.
They said they had heard a helicopter overhead, and the whoosh of a missile flying through the air just before the blast. Several witnesses claimed that the Americans brought a bulldozer and quickly filled in the crater caused by the explosion.
If nothing else, it was an example of how the Americans are losing the battle for the trust and support of Iraqis, and how the bombers are succeeding. In Baghdad, the US army said that it was too early to know whether the explosion was caused by a car bomb, but Brigadier-General Mark Kimmitt, deputy operations chief, said it showed al-Qa'ida's "fingerprints".
From CNN... (I snipped almost all of it b/c there was nothing to say other than what the army spokespeople said, but check the link if you want to see)
Car bomb kills 45 would-be Iraqi soldiers
Attack comes day after explosion kills 50
Wednesday, February 11, 2004 Posted: 4:10 AM EST (0910 GMT)
BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- In the second deadly attack in as many days, a suicide car bomber Wednesday killed 45 people, most of them Iraqi men standing in line for recruitment into the new Iraqi army, Iraqi medical officials said.
Soldiers from the U.S. Army's 427th Field Artillery -- with a forward operations base close by -- immediately moved into the scene.