CBS’s Logan Quotes Eyewitness on Iraq Violence: ‘Everything Was Destroyed’

NewsBusters.org - Media Research CenterIn a news brief on Monday’s CBS "Early Show" correspondent Lara Logan reported on recent violence in Baghdad as a result of militia forces of Muqtada al Sadr: "The streets of Sadr City in eastern Baghdad have become a bloody battleground...This eyewitness describing the fighting on his street says 'one person was killed, and a child was also killed there. Everything got burned up. Everything was destroyed.’"

Logan followed that hyperbolic account by declaring: "The human cost was difficult to measure as the wounded continued to fill hospital beds and the number of dead kept rising." The "Early Show" seized on Iraq violence in a similar way in February, when despite the obvious success of the troop surge, correspondent Mark Strassman declared: "Mayhem and misery are back in Baghdad."

As Logan concluded her report, she made sure to mention how this violence would cause problems for General David Petraeus’s upcoming report to Congress: "This latest spike in violence coming at a very awkward time for the U.S. government. As America's top officials, General David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker are due to testify before Congress tomorrow."

Here is the full transcript of the news brief:

7:09AM SEGMENT:

RUSS MITCHELL: Iraq's prime minister has issued an ultimatum to the followers of anti-American cleric Muqtada al Sadr. It comes after a week of heavy fighting in the area of Baghdad they control, which is known as Sadr City. CBS News Chief Foreign Correspondent Lara Logan is in Baghdad. Lara, good morning to you.

LARA LOGAN: Good morning, Russ. Well, in the last two days alone, five U.S. soldiers have been killed in fighting against Shiite militants in and around Baghdad, particularly, as you mentioned, in Sadr City, the Baghdad stronghold of Sadr's Medhi Army militia. The streets of Sadr City in eastern Baghdad have become a bloody battleground. U.S. and Iraqi forces battling militias backed by Iran. Like the Medhi Army of Muqtada al Sadr, the anti-American cleric. Civilians are paying a heavy price. This eyewitness describing the fighting on his street says 'one person was killed, and a child was also killed there. Everything got burned up. Everything was destroyed.' The human cost was difficult to measure as the wounded continued to fill hospital beds and the number of dead kept rising. Iraq's politicians tried to isolate Sadr's followers, calling this weekend for militias to be disbanded but making no mention of the many militias attached to almost every party in this government. Any action against the Medhi Army will likely bring more violence, and the government's ultimatum comes at a sensitive time. Sadr has called for a million man march on Wednesday, to mark the fifth anniversary of the day Baghdad fell to U.S. troops. There was more fighting in the southern city of Basra as well. This latest spike in violence coming at a very awkward time for the U.S. government. As America's top officials, General David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker are due to testify before Congress tomorrow. Russ.

MITCHELL: Lara Logan in Baghdad, thank you.

Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC