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Tuesday, June 01, 2004

The 38th Cavalry Unit??? Another Howler from AP 
The Associated Press blows it again!

Most of the injured were outside the offices and were struck by flying
glass, said Lt. Col. Robert Campbell of the 38th Calvary Unit in the 1st
Calvary Division.


It's not the 38th. It's the 3-8th. As in 3rd Squadron, 8th Cav. And it's not a "Calvary unit," moron. It's a regiment.

And it's not &$^#ing "Calvary," it's "CAVALRY!"


Now, the reporter, Scherezade Faramarzi, is one of Iraq's most prolific reporters, and is on some of Iraq's most important beats. Arguably, she's one of the most important reporters in the world right now.

Normally, I can chalk up "calvary" to an understandable typo. Shit happens.

But if she's covering the military, you would think he knew what a "unit" was, and what a squadron or battalion was, and what a regiment was.

She doesn't.

And there was nobody in the Associated Press editorial chain who did, either.

It makes you wonder what else the AP is missing? If Faramarzi ever cites an anonymous military source, can you have any confidence that she even knows who the hell he's talking to?

Or that her editors even know the right questions to ask? Or where to direct them?

Every reporter doesn't need to have a masters in military history. But if your reporter is weak on his beat, at least pair him up with an editor who's not!

And if, after two and a half more years of covering war, your team still can't be bothered to learn the basic building block vocabulary of military organization--if they can't even ask a soldier "What unit are you with" and comprehend the answer, then it's time to kick those losers down to the entertainment beat or back to internships and bring in some serious reporters who have done their homework.

Splash, out
Jason


Comments:
Jason-

God, why didn't I think of you before.
Do you have the 29 May Army Times on digits?

You may know that Boortz is on about his "Strained Abu Ghraib" references? I've got one better, that you'd love.

Check the story on the 2ID's 2d BCT that will rotate out to Iraq. You will not believe the POV (no, not that POV - Point-of-View.

Any suggestions?

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