Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Libya and Japan are the News

SOME FOOD FROM JAPAN CAN'T ENTER U.S., FDA worried about milk products, produce near nuclear plant: Anderson Cooper alerts viewers to stay tuned for news from Japan at the end of AC360

CLINTON: GADHAFI EXPLORING EXIT OPTIONS: Breaking news by Anderson Cooper detailing HRC's conversation with Diane Sawyer

NEW REPORTS OF AIRSTRIKES IN LIBYA, Near Misrata: Amateur videos from You Tube shown to introduce the days events

Discussion with Chris Lawrence, Arwa Damon and Nic Robertson

Follow up with Jill Dougherty, Fouad Ajami and David Gergen

Peter Bergen and David Kirkpatrick (New York Times) discuss with Cooper the origins of the uprising, is it secular or tribal? The answer is a little of both according to the experts and fundamentalists aren't driving the revolution.

Jonathan Miller reports of the damage done in Tripoli by coalition troops.



At 53 minutes into the hour we got to the news from Japan. A lot was covered in a very short period of time. Here's the rundown:

• radiation levels in food grown near the nuclear plant are high
• 17 charter flights with U.S. military dependents voluntarily left Japan today
• brief mention of workers in the Fukushima Dia-ichi plant and update on current conditions at the plant

And finally we get to a human interest story about the suffering of the Japanese people, by Kyung Lah.


I'm guessing it's just me and the world has moved on from Japan, but I can't. I'm not saying Libya isn't the big news, of course it is, but maybe one less segment on Libya so we could have a Gary Tuchman report or more human interest stories detailing conditions in Japan? And please don't misunderstand, I am not asking for more Jim Walsh!

Another beef is that we don't see nearly enough of Peter Bergen and way too much of Ajami and Gergen. I guess absence makes the heart grown fonder? Let's ditch Ajami for a while and see if we miss him. ;) ~ Phebe


Congrats to AC360, Mediaite posted this recently:

CNN’s Anderson Cooper finished first among cable news shows Friday night, hitting 599,000 viewers 25-54. That was the highest-rated show on any network for the night, beating usual ratings news champ Bill O’Reilly on Fox.

AC360 Transcript

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ACAnderFan said...

I liked that we actually got to hear from one of the power plant workers. Interesting to see where they stay. Its good that at least for a little bit while they are on the boat they are out of the situation.

I agree Phebe. I'd like to see more of Japan on 360. I do think one less Libya segment would be fine. I think 360 has tunnel vision when it comes to Libya.

judy said...

Totally agree Phebe. Japan is a real human interest story and I don't think people have "moved on."
Japan touched a certain level in American consciousness.
Maybe because so much of what we consume is "made in Japan," and we feel real empathy with their situation. It is a story that captured both our hearts and minds.
While I'm not diminishing Libya's importance, it is time to take a step back and realize that we get a very small share of oil from Libya, even though it is a humanitarian issue.
We can't save everybody. And in the end, all we get is resentment.
Glad to hear Japan is making slow but steady progress with electrical power in one or more of the reactors.
Was very moved by how the Japanese honor their dead even when placed in body bags. Their culture is one that seems rather exceptional and filled with tradition.
AC's ratings were extremely high because this story and the way in which 360 presented it, was captivating.
Having said that, it time to say good-bye to Fouad Ajami and David Gergen...not so captivating.

aries moon said...

Not pleased with Gergen's and especially Ajami's frequent appearances on 360, but I do find it amusing how Gergen pronounces Ajami's first name as "Foo-add". ;)
I did find it interesting that Ajami finally managed to admit that the the President has a very difficult task in dealing with the Libyan crisis and that (gasp) he actually sympathizes with him. I'm not sure if he was being condescending/sarcastic with that statement, but it was the only thing he's said that I agreed with since he's been on the program.

Anonymous said...

I don't mind all the Libya talk, but I do mind so much coming from Fouad Ajami. He may know a lot about the region, but he not providing info anymore. He's just spouting his very-biased opinions as facts. His dig at Al Jazeera using old Bush-era language was especially annoying last night.

I appreciate the continued well-done Japan updates, but would also like at least a sentence or two each night about other hot spots - Yemen, Bahrain, etc.

Anonymous said...

I would like to hear more "news" in the program and less opinion from Ajami and Gergen as well. It seems that AC sometimes goes after opinion rather than facts with his guests and that is irritating to those who want to hear the facts. As he so often says "let the viewers make up their own minds", but when opinion from one person becomes the only insight that is presented, then the discussion becomes one-sided.

Anonymous said...

I have to admit that at first I really liked Fouad Ajami. The man is very knowledgeable about the Middle East and what has occurred in that area of the world. But the more he has been on the more VERY biased he has become as of late. I do not care for that at all! I have noticed many little backhanded comments he has thrown in to trash others. That is uncalled for! You can definitely see he has many biases against people in that region who aren't from his ancestry, region, nationality etc.

I am glad that others have started catching on to his bias. I've noticed it for a while but kept quiet to see if others would notice also. The Al Jazeera comment last night was too much! Anderson should have stopped what was being said and held Ajami's feet to the fire on that comment. I think Anderson is letting his admiration for Ajami get in the way of AC holding him accountable for what he says. If anyone else says biased things or out right lies Anderson grills them unmercilessly. Well Ajami should be no different, Anderson should make him answer for what he says.

And I have to say that I think Ajami's backhanded, snide remarks about Pres. Obama every night are getting to be too much also. I am not by far Obama's number one fan so for me to say this is a HUGE deal! Ajami hates Obama you can tell. He hates that Obama didn't want to run in alone and "save" the Libyan people but instead waited for the rest of the world to join in. Now he cuts Obama with snide remarks any time he can and I am over that.

What really gets me is he tries saying that the "genocide" in Libya is different than the "genocide" in Darfur, Syria. Behrain or anywhere else. That we shouldn't rush in to help those people but we should have went in alone to help Libya. Now why does he think that? Bias maybe!? In fact there is no difference in what's happening in Libya or Darfur. Genocide is genocide no matter where it happens. When he started saying this mess is when I started seeing the true Ajami.

I think 360 should stop having him on for a while. If not then Anderson should put their friendship aside and actually hold Ajami accountable for what he says.

Anonymous said...

I think opinion "news" is the wave of the future. It's much cheaper to produce than having a reporter on site and do a real report. It's all about saving money while, at the same time, bombarding viewers with more and more commercials. I think Fox started it, and CNN is, as usual, just a copycat.

Totally agree with you all on Gergen and Ajami. Used to like Reza Aslan a lot, but Anderson seems to want his "father figures" that he can admire and look up to. I'm tired of always seeing the same faces and hearing the same opinions. That's what made 360 so dull and boring. I watched the program and can't remember a thing about it. Variety sure isn't welcome anymore at 360. We're lucky if they manage 2 separate subjects in one show. At least there was no mention of those celeb losers.

Anonymous said...

Just going to throw my 2-cents in. I agree with most of what has been said. Fouad Ajami is like a bad house guest that just won't leave. I enjoyed the first few night's he was on 360 when he mostly offered a little background on the region. With each appearance he has become more bold in letting his political views be made known - and his comment about Al Jazeera last night was over the top. Shame on Anderson Cooper for not calling him out on that.

Anderson can befriend whomever he pleases, giving them a platform on his program night after night is something entirely different. Where are the producers in this matter? Fouad has become the Nungesser we were subjected to night after night last summer.

AC360 booked and had Peter Bergen on the program last night - yet his time of objective reporting seemed to be cut short - while the subjective analysis of Ajami and Gergen was allowed to run on.

CNN has the resources - they have reporters in the field - Gary Tuchman is still in Japan and gave a live report minutes before 360 started on Piers' program; Arwa Damon and Nic Robertson are in Libya; Ivan Watson is in Egypt. Please 360, use your "on the ground" resources and objective guests such as Bergen, Raza Aslan, etc. and leave the those with an axe to grind off the air.

Where is Gen Russel Honore and others like him, who can offer objective reporting on the mission? Leave the pundits and those with a political axe to grind to the "opinion news" channels, please? - Just Keeping You Honest...

I really enjoyed Kyong Lah's report from Japan.

I was thankful that Mr. Walsh was absent from 360 - lets hope Fouad and Gergen join him....

Anonymous said...

David Gergen tweeted that he would be on 360 tonight talking about Libya. So it looks as if we will once again get he and Fouad Ajami giving their opinions on the matter. YIPPEE! *sarcasm intended*

Anonymous said...

I watched Piers Morgan a few times and every time my impression was that he did a much better job than Anderson in regards to the guests especially. Morgan's show seems to be much more informative and to the point than AC360. Maybe they're trying harder because they're still new?

Anonymous said...

@1:21PM: "I watched the program and can't remember a thing about it."
So true. If ATA doesn't give captions or hints I really don't remember one show from the next, unless AC is in the field.
That's what made his reporting from Japan so different and compelling.
I also saw Hillary today in mid-afternoon and can't remember a thing she said either. I was too busy noticing her hair.
She's an attractive woman and someone must tell her to go back to the "Campaign Hillary" hair style. It was short and sleek and really made a difference in her appearance.

Anonymous said...

Well, it seems as if we still get Gergen talking about Libya tonight but not Ajami. Someone from the Council of Foreign Relations will be on instead. YES!

CFR_org Tune in to @CNN's @andersoncooper tonight at 10pm ET to watch #CFR's Haass discuss the situation in #Libya.

Claire said...

I'm a loyal 360 viewer, to a degree. I'm not going to listen night after night to endless talk about Libya. It's an important issue, but so are many others right now.

I don't know if it's ratings they are trying to keep, if it's Anderson's passion or what, but it's not mine.

I feel disloyal when I say this, but there are many other cable news shows that seem to have a lot more thought, research and energy to into them than 360 does right now.

Oh, and I agree about Hillary's hair. What is up with that?? I keep waiting for it to get better and it seems to be worse.