Democracy Now! March 31, 2003

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Democracy Now! March 31, 2003
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Six journalists still missing in Iraq including two from Newsday: We talk to Newsday editor Les Payne and Pacifica s unembedded reporter Jerry Quickly who was expelled from Iraq last week; War Secretary Donald Rumsfeld reportedly rejected advice from top Pentagon planners on how to invade Iraq: Former Marine & UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter explains why the U.S. may lose the war

9:00-9:01 Billboard 9:01-9:06 Headlines 9:06-9:07 One Minute Music Break 9:07-9:20: The Committee for the Protection of Journalists reports there are now six international journalists missing in Iraq. They are Matthew McAllester and Moises Saman of Newsday in New York. Johan Rydeng Spanner, a free-lance photographer with a Danish daily paper. U.S. Free lance photographer Molly Bingham. And a pair of journalists from the British ITV News, cameraman Fred Nerac and translator Hussein Othman. The Committee reports that three journalists have died so far. On March 22, Terry Lloyd, a reporter for Britain's ITN, was killed, perhaps by "friendly fire" from U.S. or British troops, near the southern Iraqi city of Basra. The same day, Paul Moran, a free-lance cameraman on assignment for the Australian Broadcasting Corp., was killed in an apparent suicide attack when a man detonated a car bomb at a checkpoint in northeastern Iraq. Another ITN reporter, Gaby Rado was found dead Sunday in a parking lot of the Abu Sanaa hotel in Sulaimaniyah in northern Iraq, where he and other reporters were staying. The families of the two Newsday journalists missing in Baghdad asked the Rev. Jesse Jackson yesterday to help locate their loved ones and secure their release. In related news, the U.S. military has expelled at least five journalists over the past week. Two Israeli and two Portuguese journalists are charging that U.S. forces detained them for 72 hours, denying them food and water and making them stand overnight in the cold. One of the Israeli reporters said, "They made us lie on the ground with our face in the sand for hours before we were given a thorough body search. One of the Portuguese journalists were reportedly beaten by five U.S. soldiers. And Christian Science Monitor stringer Philip Smucker was also removed by the military from Iraq. He is now reporting from Kuwait. Last week the U.S. military expelled him from Iraq for disclosing what the Pentagon claimed to be sensitive information. Well today we are joined by Pacifica s own unembedded reporter, Jerry Quickly who left Baghdad last week after being expelled by Iraqi officials. * Les Payne, deputy managing editor of Newsday * Jerry Quickly, reporter with Pacifica Radio who was recently expelled from Baghdad by Iraqi officials 9:20-9:21 One Minute Music Break 9:21-9:30 Reporters cont d 9:30-9:58 War Secretary Donald Rumsfeld reportedly rejected advice from top Pentagon planners on how to invade Iraq: Former Marine & UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter explains why the U.S. may lose the war. War Secretary Donald Rumsfeld repeatedly rejected advice from top Pentagon planners that substantially more troops would be needed to fight a war in Iraq. This according to a report by Seymour Hersh in the New Yorker magazine. Rumsfeld insisted at least six times in the run-up to the invasion that the proposed number of ground troops be sharply reduced and got his way. He also miscalculated the level of Iraqi resistance and overruled advice from war commander Gen. Tommy Franks to delay the invasion until troops who were denied access through Turkey could find another route. And the Washington Post is reporting that more than a dozen officers interviewed, including a senior officer in Iraq, said Rumsfeld took significant risks by leaving key units in the United States and Germany at the start of the war. That resulted in an invasion force that is too small, strung out, underprotected, undersupplied and awaiting tens of thousands of reinforcements who will not get there for weeks. Current and former U.S. military officers are blaming Rumsfeld and his aides saying the civilian leaders "micromanaged" the deployment plan out of mistrust of the generals and an attempt to prove their own theory that a light, maneuverable force could handily defeat Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. Rumsfeld yesterday repeatedly denied the reports on the Sunday talk shows, insisting the war is going as planned. We are now joined by Scott Ritter who has predicted the U.S. will lose the war. * Scott Ritter, former weapons inspector and US marine. In a recent interview on Irish radio he warned the US will lose the war with Iraq. Ritter said: "We find ourselves... facing a nation of 23 million, with armed elements numbering around 7 million --who are concentrated at urban areas. We will not win this fight. America will loose this war." Links: US Will Lose the Iraq War at 9:40-9:41 One Minute Music Break 9:41-9:58 Ritter cont d 9:58-9:59 Outro and Credits Democracy Now! is produced by Kris Abrams, Mike Burke, Angie Karran, Ana Nogueira and Elizabeth Press. Mike Di Filippo is our music maestro and engineer.

Date Recorded on: 
March 31, 2003
Date Broadcast on: 
March 31, 2003
Item duration: 
59 min.
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WBAI; Amy Goodman, host., March 31, 2003
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