Man Without Qualities

Thursday, May 01, 2003

Ancient History At The New York Times

The New York Times has unleashed apparently countless many items regarding what the paper has presented as an apparently countless many art objects looted from Iraq museums. In addition to its own sanctimonious, lachrymose editorializing, the Times has run repetitious, presumptuous and accusing articles by Frank Rich, and Maureen Dowd (predictably, more than once) and Bernard Weinraub and Adam Goodheart and Alberto Manguel and John Tierney and Constance Lowenthal and Stephen Urice and William J. vanden Heuvel and Sam Dillion and Douglas Jehl and Elizabeth Becker and many, many more.

Many of the riper items from the Times have appeared since April 17 - the date the Wall Street Journal informed its readers that reports of Iraq museum looting were being hugely exaggerated. The Journal and others have also warned that the finer vanished pieces may well have been taken by Iraq officials - and not as a result of the too-well-publicized looting.

Today, the Times "waddles in" with its own version:

Col. Matthew F. Bogdanos, a Marine reservist who is investigating the looting and is stationed at the museum, said museum officials had given him a list of 29 artifacts that were definitely missing. But since then, 4 items — ivory objects from the eighth century B.C. — had been traced. "Twenty-five pieces is not the same as 170,000," said Colonel Bogdanos, who in civilian life is an assistant Manhattan district attorney.

Thank goodness the Times found someone to clear that up. Has it taken the Times since April 17 to figure out that 25 is not 170,000?

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