I'm no fan of this guy...but I appreciate his message here.
"They have a saying in the news business," Geraldo Rivera related this week. "Reporters don't report buildings that don't burn."
And with that introduction, he told a TV audience about the story that is being systematically denied to our entire nation: the success story of post-Saddam Iraq.
Are we losing some soldiers each week? Yes. Is there some frustration in the public about electricity and water service? Yes.
Are some Saddam Hussein loyalists scurrying throughout the land, making trouble? Yes. Has this opened a window for some terrorist mischief? Yes.
But that's all we hear. No wonder the country is in a mixed mood about Iraq.
If you hear about the buildings that are not burning, though, it is a different story indeed...
"When I got to Baghdad, I barely recognized it," he began, comparing his just-completed trip to two others he made during and just after the battle to topple Saddam. "You have over 30,000 Iraqi cops and militiamen already on the job. This is four months after major fighting stopped.
"Can you imagine that kind of gearing up in this country? Law and order is better; archaeological sites are being preserved; factories, schools are being guarded."
But what about the secondhand griping that the media have been so efficiently relating about power, water and other infrastructure?
"To say that Iraq is being rebuilt is not true," answered Rivera. "Iraq is being built. There was no infrastructure before; we are doing it. I just think the good news is being underestimated and underreported."
At this juncture, one must evaluate how to feel about the voices telling us only about the bad news in Iraq, whether from the mouths of news anchors or Democratic presidential hopefuls.
At best, they are underinformed. At worst, their one-sided assessments of post-Saddam Iraq are intentional falsehoods.