I received a comment from a reader of one of the earlier posts, who, after mentioning that he refuses to watch CNN and BBC because of slanted coverage, praised the posts on this page because "[w]hile you may be slanting your report, I dont get the sense that you are." It is interesting, because the response from Iraqis is largely so positive that simply reporting what they actually say may seem slanted after the heavy doses of negativity fed by the press. Yet despite the fact that I normally pitch some open ended negative questions to the interviewees just to give them an opportunity to complain about the United States, the Iraqis I have spoken with will have none of it. They are in fact very frustrated with the press that they get here, particularly Al Jazeera. When I tell them what the press is like in the United States, they simply shake their heads.
It is also interesting that the people are dying to tell you about America, the American effort in Iraq, and what it means to their lives. They will seek you out. Mr. Nasim (from the NRO article which should be up later today) hailed me into his house. Often times, the job of a reporter is simply being willing to actually listen, rather than imposing your own views upon the interviewee. I wonder how many Iraqis have told other journalists stories like those that I have been told, only to find their statements falling on deaf ears.