I do understand the need for a "wall" separating the editorial and reporting functions at The New York Times. However, I don't understand how the description of the same event can be so discrepant.
Today's editorial quite accurately characterizes Bush's visit to India and Pakistan as a "spectacularly misconceived trip." Elizabeth Bumiller in yesterday's Times (page A8) reported that "Indians made light of Mr. Bush's one faux pas" - failing to take lovely Laura to see the Taj Mahal.
Bumiller voiced her approval by noting that Bush was the first President "to visit Pakistan since Clinton in 2000" and noted that he "bounced around Mr. bin Laden's terrain with defiance." Rapidly advancing senility prevents me from remembering the President(s) who served between Clinton and Bush and who failed to visit Pakistan. Calling Mr Bush's actions during his brief visit: "bouncing around Mr bin Laden's terrain with defiance is simply bizarre. I had always believed that it was bin Ladden who was the wanted criminal, not Mr Bush. Because of security fears, W. landed in the dead of night with the lights off on Air Force 1. Bloomberg reports that he "was driven to Musharraf's Islamabad
office [that] morning in a motorcade escorted by three low-flying U.S. Black Hawk helicopters. The vehicles traveled at about 70 miles an hour through the deserted streets of the capital, where police have imposed a ban on protests.Thousands of personnel, including soldiers and police, were deployed in Islamabad to ensure the security of Bush, Pakistan's The News reported yesterday. A U.S. team had arrived in Islamabad to help supervise security measures, it said." They empty the capital and Bush didn't leave it. This is a guy who is scared to death for his safety, and rightly so. Not some defiant fellow bouncing around.
Bumiller's reporting is completely out of synch with the reality on the ground. There's a photo of Bush fooloing around with a cricket bat, but no mention of the four dead protesters in Lucknow. She describes someone who was lucky to be out of town; happiy away from home. The editorial describes one who is probably creating another catastrophe, who should never have left home.
OK, NY Times, which is it? I think I know the answer - but I don't understand the cowardice that forces you to print Ms. Bumiller's silly report.