Monday, January 31, 2005


Headlines and photographs shape (or reflect) our opinion of events. The ink-stained forefingers of Iraqi voters made for arresting and heartening images yesterday and today. The headlines I saw slowly morphed from variants on Bush Says the election is a success (but who can really believe him?) to The Election is a Success!

Strangely enough, The New York Times apparently worked backwards, growing more despondent as the day progressed:
TIME HEADLINE [the headlined article itself did not change during the day]
09:24 High Turnout in Baghdad Points to Early Success
10:24 Amid Attacks, a Party Atmosphere on Baghdad's Closed Streets
18:26 Insurgent Attacks in Baghdad and Elsewhere Kill at Least 24
20:50 Attacks in Baghdad and Elsewhere Reportedly Kill Several Dozen
Today they grudgingly editorialized:
This page has not hesitated to criticize the Bush administration over its policies in Iraq, and we continue to have grave doubts about the overall direction of American strategy there. Yet today, along with other Americans, whether supporters or critics of the war, we rejoice in a heartening advance by the Iraqi people. For now at least, the multiple political failures that marked the run-up to the voting stand eclipsed by a remarkably successful election day.
When even the naysayers admit to "remarkable" success, it is truly a remarkable event.


Post a Comment