27 Dec 2005
2005: SUMMARY JUDGMENT
Telling it like it isn't
By Robert Fisk, ROBERT FISK is Middle East correspondent for the London Independent and the author, most recently, of "The Great War for Civilisation: The Conquest of the Middle East," published last month by Knopf.
I FIRST REALIZED the enormous pressures on American journalists in the Middle East when I went some years ago to say goodbye to a colleague from the Boston Globe. I expressed my sorrow that he was leaving a region where he had obviously enjoyed reporting. I could save my sorrows for someone else, he said. One of the joys of leaving was that he would no longer have to alter the truth to suit his paper's more vociferous readers.
"I used to call the Israeli Likud Party 'right wing,' " he said. "But recently, my editors have been telling me not to use the phrase. A lot of our readers objected." And so now, I asked? "We just don't call it 'right wing' anymore."
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