Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Covering the Big One

I just wrote a review of a collection of war correspondents' writings covering World War II.  "Reporting World War II" is an absolutely terrific book, though I have only the first of the two volumes.

For good, non-cheerleading and touching, often prescient work, it's hard to pass up Ernie Pyle, E.B. White, Margaret Bourke-White, James Agee, Dorothy Thompson, Edward R. Murrow, William Shirer and many others.  You will note that many of the foreign-based correspondents could see clearly what was coming, even if some policymakers wern't paying attention.

Compare and contrast with coverage of, say, the invasion of Iraq.

That's not to say that there was no propaganda--Agee found a great deal to criticize in war movies, and the problems black soldiers faced went practically unmentioned in the mainstream press. There's no hint that anyone thought that the Allies weren't the good guys. Still, it's great stuff. 

Kudos to the Library of America for its inclusiveness.

My favorite remains "This One is Captain Waskow," a Pyle classic.

No comments:

Lijit Ad Tag