I want to start out by saying that my heart and prayers go out to the families of the soldiers that were killed in today’s helicopter crash in Afghanistan.
And now for my rant:
The AP posted the story on their site in great detail... too much detail. Why do I say there’s too much detail? Shouldn’t the media post the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth? Of course they should, but that’s not what “media” does anymore. They rush the story to print (web) before they have all the facts, they quote anonymous sources and they have no SCRUPLES!
Back in the day, journalists would hold off on stories that involved the deaths of service members until after the families had been notified. That doesn’t happen now. In our 24 hour a day, 365 days a year media spin zone, the facts aren’t important now, its being the first to report the story... regardless of the consequences.
So, when the AP posted their story this afternoon, it named the branch of service, what they were told happened (without checking any facts) and adding details such as the exact unit that was involved, and citing anonymous sources because THE FAMILIES HADN’T BEEN NOTIFIED!
Although the exact number isn’t known, there could be as many as 300 members of the unit in question. Now that its all over the news, there are 300 military families who are thinking the worst right now. Was their son, daughter, child, grandchild, mom, dad on that copter? It couldn’t possibly be their loved one, because the military and our government wouldn’t be so callous as to tell an AP reporter that their loved one was dead before they even notified them... would they? To make matters even worse, most SEAL families only know that their loved one is a Seal, and not which team they are on... so multiply that horrible waiting to possibly thousands of families.
Oh yes they would. Two unnamed U.S. Officials leaked the unit information to at least the AP, probably to all of the press, and KNEW that the families hadn’t been notified (that’s why they wanted to be anonymous). They KNEW it was wrong to do, callous, heartless, and WRONG, so they did it under the cover of anonymity. These two U.S. Officials should be found and shot after a fair hearing of course.
Now Facebook and Twitter are all aflutter with condolences and prayers, and rightly so, but those would have and did happen before the unit was revealed. The press didn’t have to print the information the cowardly US Officials gave them. Any right minded citizen wouldn’t have released that information until AFTER the families had been notified, waited for the military to tell them to release it.
Is it any wonder why the military doesn’t trust the media? You can scream all you want about freedom of the press, but when you have “imbedded” reporters giving satellite reports straight from the battlefield, giving away the troops’ location, and detailing their plan of attack, and now releasing information on the deaths of our bravest soldiers before their families are even aware of the incident... I say screw the media. I don’t need to know intimate details until AFTER the families know it.
Let the media know that they suck! Send the AP a "Press Release" and let them know they SUCK!