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Ja, typisch. Das grossten gefahr das ich sehe ist dass so viele in Deutschland meinen dass Sie uns gut verstehen aber sie kennen nur ein karikatur. Sie wissen nicht grundsatzsachen aber haben keine ahnung wie naiv sie sind. Leider mit Dem "Wir Hassen Amerika" Spiegel, der karikatur geht nur weiter und schlechter. Schade fuer uns alle.


I know that this is anecdotal evidence, but my small New Hampshire town just celebrated a young man's return from Iraq. He is a medic and he witnessed some of the worst carnage of the war.

His worst experience: seeing a 30 year old sergeant bleed to death. The sergeant was hit in the leg. Apparently the bullet severed the carrotic artery.

But the worst carnage that he experience was working in a hospital in Bagdad. 95% of the victims were Iraqies. Most were victims of terror attacks. He said, "it got so that when ever I saw a victim that hat 4 limbs, two eyes or had less then 10% of his or her skin burned, I was truely happy for them."

15 miles to the south of where I live, there is a small town in Massachusetts that has the distinction of having the first victim of 9/11 and having the first fatal war casualty of the war. John Ognowski was a part-time farmer, a National Guard colonel and a pilot with United Airlines. On 9/11, his airplane was the first plane to hit the Towers. It is speculated that his abductors slit his throat while he was piloting the aircraft.

A young kid (can't recall his name, sorry), enlisted shortly thereafter. he volunteered to join the Army infantry. He was killed on the first day of fighting.

Ironically, the kid worked at a coffee shop in the town before he enlisted. John Ognowski was a regular. Most likely the kid served him coffee every morning.

Sorry Germany, I do not see any moral problems with soldiers returning to Irak.

chris,

while you made a good point in stating that germans don't understand america(ns) - et vice versa -, i wouldn't call the question of what's the highest military honor a "grundsatzfrage". if that was the only misconception between "cowboys" and "weasels", we could be glad.

Let's not miss the point of the post folks!

We are talking about Speigel here. The Spiegel who convinced a chunk of the German public that a vote for Schroeder and Roth was a vote against Bush and Global Warming, and are now acting as exotically foreign cheerleaders for the Kerry campaign.

The only two things the German Street knows about Kerry is that he has 3 purple hears and that he our Sir Galahad riding out to meet evil dragon Bush.

Since in Spiegel's eyes Kerry is a hero of the anti-Bush war, ipso facto he must have not only been a 'Nam hero but the also the medal _MUST_ be the highest award for bravery making Kerry the finest human being who ever lived.

In other words this is not JUST a slip. It is consitent with the German Press's habit of cherry picking facts and asserting half truths so long as they reinforce its leftist prejudices.

BTW: Can anyone tell me what the highest military honor is in Germany?

David, may I be really picky here? The medal is actually called The Medal of Honor. It is informally called the Congressional Medal of Honor because it is awarded on behalf of Congress, but that is not its official name. Just being a military stickler here :)

Oh, it doesn't matter, the Amis and their medals, we can call them what we want, just like we can translate anything an American says very freely. American is just a dialect of English, after all, which is in turn a German dialect.
/sarcasm

"Shock and awe", let's not forget, was translated as "Shock und Ersetzen" throughout the German media. "Ersetzen" means terror, not awe, so the message is conveyed that the Americans are the actual terrorists. A simple internet dictionary search will show you that "awe" means "Ehrfurcht".

But what are facts and details when you have a larger ideological program to pursue?

The purple heart is the HIGHEST award for bravery?!? I have a good friend who received 6 of them, one, to his embarassment, was recieved for falling asleep on night permeter duty - he rolled down an enbankment into some barbed wire - it drew some blood, so his commanding officer put him in for it. He jokes about how pathetic it was.
He doesn't hang them up in his library next to his bronze star - which is the just about the highest honor for bravery.

Kid charlgemagne, you are wrong. The Phrase was translated rarely and never translated as "ersetzen", but maybe as "entsetzen". Furthermore the phrase is pretty much a technocratic euphemism like "colleteral damage". "entsetzen" is an approtiate term in this case and is not related to terrorism exclusively.

> Since in Spiegel's eyes Kerry is a hero of the anti-Bush war

That's not true. See for instance
http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/0,1518,291779,00.html
Kerry does not look good at all in this article.

This blog is so obsessed with an alleged SPIEGEL conspiracy against Bush and America and Israel and what not that it does not notice any self-criticism like this one:
http://www.spiegel.de/politik/debatte/0,1518,291618,00.html

"David's Medienkritik" could use some self-criticism, too!

@ jo

I have to repeat it: Ever heard of 'fig leaf' or 'alibi'? For every pro-American (not to speak of pro-Bush ones) or neutral article on Spiegel Online (which is most probably not written by a German, but by an American, or sometimes a French), there are ten articles full of polemics and prejudices. But because of this one article showing a different opinion, Spiegel can claim to be balanced. It is not. Just open your eyes and read!

@jo. Don't blame David for the rubbish I write in the comment sections.

The pain of Spiegel is that now and again amongst the Attac-on-line propaganda there a few priceless works of real journalism. The article you quote is a fair report. Anything that Henryk M. Broda writes is unmissable.

And I have to agree that Spiegel's joy at the propect of Bush's demise has certainly calmed down of late, but this more to do with their inability to exclude Flip-Flop Kerry from their contempt for all things American than any move toward objectivity.

But lets do a straw poll of headlines: if I take a unedited list of the past 10 listed on Politik Aktuell relating to the US election
http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/0,1518,k-4932,00.html

I get this:

US-Wirtschaft: Kerrys Kampf gegen die Job-Verräter
Wahl-Nominierung: Kerry sichert sich Kandidatur gegen Bush
Schock im Weißen Haus: Spaniens Rückzug torpediert Bushs Wahlkampf
Wahlumfrage: Bush und Kerry fast gleichauf [ed: Bush was 3% ahead]
Monatliches Rededuell: Bush kneift
Bush-Herausforderer: Kerry macht im Süden seine Kandidatur klar
Vote-Pfuscher: You need to click "Abstimmen" [ed: Evil proBush DMK reads rig poll]
Terroruntersuchungen: Kerry wirft Bush Fehler vor
US-Wahlkampf: Republikaner attackieren Flip-Flop-Kerry
Wahlkampfspots: Angehörige von Terroropfern attackieren Bush

It's not a one sided set of headlines, but is that your idea of a balanced set of headlines? Does "Spaniens Rückzug torpediert Bushs Wahlkampf" accurately reflect the state of the world for you? Are you exepecting a article "Spanish atrocity swings US electorate behind President" any time soon?

@Thomas

If that really is the case then why is this blog concerned with "Purple Hearts" and the question whether SPIEGEL ONLINE wakes up at 6:20am or at 6:37am? If the SPIEGEL really is that bad then why don't we discuss more exciting examples of how it "screwed up"?
--jo

@ jo

You don't seem to read this blog. There are so many impressive examples of this bias right here! For a (very convincing) start, just read those articles about Spiegel Online's Marc Pitzke.
And David's argument concerning the Purple Heart is justified for two reasons: 1) The German media's attempt to make John 'F.' (something I haven't read or heard even ONCE in American media) Kerry the Germans' darling againt evil cowboy W., 2) The fact that there are lots of German journalists writing about the U. S. that get an awful lot of facts wrong - intended or not. They write about Pres. Johnsons re-election defeat although he didn't run, they talk about censorship that doesn't exist and they talk about 'neo-cons' without having read anything they ever said or wrote and misstating everything they stand for. They repeat every claim made against the Bush administration as top news, while they don't mention when any of this turns out to be made up. There's lots of examples here.
I really urge you to take a much closer look at this blog. You may well not agree with every point (I don't; e. g. I don't think the delay of the news about Yassin is that significant), but there really is a lot of convincing stuff.

So let's recount. We have a posting by David here pointing out that SPIEGEL's editors once again do not care to fact-check their writings.

First, we have Vasili who states that i wouldn't call the question of what's the highest military honor a "grundsatzfrage". if that was the only misconception between "cowboys" and "weasels", we could be glad.

Then, later, Dennis steps in to point out that "The Phrase was translated rarely and never translated as "ersetzen", but maybe as "entsetzen". Furthermore the phrase is pretty much a technocratic euphemism like "colleteral damage". "entsetzen" is an approtiate term in this case and is not related to terrorism exclusively.

And finally, jo joins in making remarks that This blog is so obsessed with an alleged SPIEGEL conspiracy against Bush and America and Israel and what not that it does not notice any self-criticism

Vasili, Dennis, jo, I've watched you posting here for a while. I must admit that you really set a new standard for off-topic, ad hominem posting a.k.a. trolling. I wonder if that's the way how you behave in real life. I mean, you must be writing dozens of correctional letters every week to SPIEGEL Online. You don't? Because they won't even read your letters? Oh, I see. What? This is a sort of refugium for you? Because people actually jump on your troll baits in here? Ah, ok. So you might be interested to note that soon there'll be this coming to David's place, too:

TypeKey

You better start looking out for another place as soon as possible.

Dennis, yes, "Entsetzen" not "Ersetzen" - I must be going senile. Nevertheless, my point still stands: "awe" means "Ehrfurcht" and connotes amazement.

@kid charlemagne

Google for 'Webster's awe'. In the hits you'll get, there are many definitions linking "awe" to fear or dread. (like http://www.hyperdictionary.com/dictionary/awe or countless others)

Seems far away from your "Ehrfurcht". More "Furcht" without much "Ehr". So have your beef with the folks from Webster's perhaps.

flursn,

calm down. do you deny that there would be no problem at all if the only thing the germans don't know about america was the name of its highest military honor?

@Neutraler Beobachter

The fact is that in its context "awe" doesn't mean fear/dread in "shock & awe", so what's your point? I don't know of any time that "awe" would be used as a synonym for "fear", it's almost always used to mean something like "amazement". I'm talking about colloquial American English, not about Germans staring at dictionaries guessing at possible meanings.

"Awe" in context with massive bombardments is badly translated with "Ehrfurcht".

Vasili, yes, you're right. Many Germans don't know much about the world they're living in. Given a map of Germany with only the boundaries of the Bundesländer drawn, how many Germans would be able to assign the proper names to the pieces? Hm?

On the other hand, many Germans (as can been observed by the huge demonstrations in the past) are pretty knowledgeable about America, especially SPIEGEL Online journalists, which makes them ideal people to make qualified remarks on everything concerning America.

To the last anonymous commenter: You exhibit the same flaw as the German media at large. You take their approach, saying to yourself, "Massive bombardments can't possibly inspire 'awe', they inspire only terror! Therefore, we shall translate the word as 'terror'." A bad approach, favoring editorializing over accuracy.

Just so the expert American -> German translators here understand, the military has always used euphemisms, "shock & awe" is just another. "awe" is meant as "awe inspiring", that's about the only way the word is actually used in America, it sounds odd but that's the military for you. If you can't translate it correctly then don't do it at all. Just like "Blitzkrieg" can stand on its own without a literal translation.

Still wondering how Spiegel can come up with "The Purple Heart is the American army’s highest award for bravery.”? Do they not research at all or just not care about facts? Do es someone not review their work?

Well, actually there's a huge difference in the organization of SPIEGEL the print edition and SPIEGEL Online. Two different staffs, at SPIEGEL Online some 100+ people work while overall there's some 1000+ employees overall. SPIEGEL Online has suffered from serious job cuts in the past, it seems now they even can't afford spellchecks anymore.

But then, what'd you expect from an online magazine that's free?

(One might note, thought, that when they can't afford more staff they should cut the yellow press stories out and concentrate on what matters.)

Also, bear in mind that the SPIEGEL house has an unconventional structure where the employees actually own part of SPIEGEL, i.e. they have sort-of shares in the enterprise. A relict of former leftist days, you know, people's property and stuff. I think it's some 25% of shares distributed among their editors (or more?) so there's a culture there in which editors are not treated as human resources which must execute orders but rather they see themselves as being independent individuals who work on their own ticket. And thus one might understand that surely some of them have their own anti-American agenda which is not rigidly controlled by supervising staff (to put it in mild words), which leads to writings as quoted above.

flursn,

Vasili, yes, you're right. Many Germans don't know much about the world they're living in. Given a map of Germany with only the boundaries of the Bundesländer drawn, how many Germans would be able to assign the proper names to the pieces? Hm?

how many names would an american be able to assign properly? does that mean americans aren't allowed to critize germany? it's not a geography quiz, flursn.

On the other hand, many Germans (as can been observed by the huge demonstrations in the past) are pretty knowledgeable about America, especially SPIEGEL Online journalists, which makes them ideal people to make qualified remarks on everything concerning America.

the same game: do germans need to know by heart the names of the late US presidents, all states and their capitals etc. to express their point of view?

germans and americans should try to understand the different approaches on solving crises. of cause you're right that the simple "cowboy" scheme doesn't fit. and it's a fact - even if you'll deny it - that the "weasel" scheme doesn't fit either.

Hey, I did not call the Germans weasels, and clearly I think there's only one nation that deserves that term. (Which just happens to be a close neighbor to Germany.)

Anyway, my point was that it's futile to make remarks about America on behalf of German SPIEGEL readers when the respective SPIEGEL journalist is unable to get simple facts right.

germans and americans should try to understand the different approaches on solving crises. - I'd like to know what that means. What is the German approach to solving a crisis, and what's the American way?

"germans and americans should try to understand the different approaches on solving crises. - I'd like to know what that means. What is the German approach to solving a crisis, and what's the American way?"

flursn,

from my point of view, american policy is as follows:

1. there's an evil bastard
2. talk about freedom, democracy and stuff
3. look if there's a more evil bastard in sight
4. if yes, talk about freedom, democracy and stuff, then go to no. 6
5. if no, talk about freedom, democracy and stuff, then go to no. 9
6. ignore that he's an evil bastard and support him strongly to get rid of the more evil bastard
7. after the more evil bastard seems to be under control, try to get rid of the evil bastard (if a less evil bastard is in sight try to be friends)
8. talk about freedom, democracy and stuff
9. try to get rid of the evil bastard
10. wonder why the world still isn't any safer

german policy goes like this:

1. there's an evil bastard
2. hesitate to take further actions
3. tell him you don't like him but respect his sovereignty
4. tell yourself that there are more evil bastards everywhere and feel good
5. try to establish trade relations (condemn him if you fail but respect his sovereignty)
6. hesitate to take further actions
7. try to improve the evil bastard's people's lives (if neccessary, pay the evil bastard)
8. hesitate to take further actions
9. talk the legs off of the evil bastard
10. wonder why the world still isn't any safer

Vasili, wonderful. Thanks for giving such a thorough insight in your mindset.

i knew you'd love it.

Start reading American bloggers to dissect.

For example -

As Adesnik at Oxblog says, "Ouch."

[9/11] commission's determination that the two policies were roughly the same calls into question claims made by Bush officials that they were developing a superior terrorism policy. The findings also put into perspective the criticism of President Bush's approach to terrorism by Richard A. Clarke, the former White House counterterrorism chief: For all his harsh complaints about Bush administration's lack of urgency in regard to terrorism, he had no serious quarrel with the actual policy Bush was pursuing before the 2001 attacks.

Clarke did not respond to efforts to reach him for comment yesterday.

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