Dan Rather Admits to Cowardice of Self, American Media - in British Paper
Mohammad J Alam
alam.m at neu.edu
Fri Sep 13 00:39:23 MDT 2002
Dan Rather, the star news anchor for the US television network CBS,
said last night that "patriotism run amok" was in danger of trampling
the freedom of American journalists to ask tough questions. And he
admitted that he had shrunk from taking on the Bush administration over
the war on terrorism.
In the weeks after September 11 Rather wore a Stars and Stripes pin in
his lapel during his evening news show in an apparent display of total
solidarity with the American cause. However, in an interview with BBC's
Newsnight, he graphically described the pressures to conform that built
up after the attacks on the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon.
"It is an obscene comparison - you know I am not sure I like it - but
you know there was a time in South Africa that people would put flaming
tyres around people's necks if they dissented. And in some ways the
fear is that you will be necklaced here, you will have a flaming tyre
of lack of patriotism put around your neck," he said. "Now it is that
fear that keeps journalists from asking the toughest of the tough
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