Friday, July 03, 2009

NY Times Reporter Roger Cohen Recants on Iran, to his Credit

If the Hedgehog Blog excoriates someone when he goes astray, we will praise him if he veers back onto the right path. Back on March 23, I righteously raked New York Times reporter and columnist Roger Cohen over the coals for his fawning coverage of the Iranian mullah regime. I compared him to Walter Duranty, the New York Times apologist for Josef Stalin in the 1930s.

Now, praise God, Roger Cohen has seen the light. As noted in this week's Jewish Journal, the fraudulent presidential election in Iran and the repressive crackdown on protest demonstrations opened Mr. Cohen's eyes to the true nature of the Iranian Islamist regime. Until forced to leave the country, he produced some of the most fearless and moving reporting of the protest movement. On June 14, the day after the election, Cohen even publicly confessed his prior errors, writing, "I’ve also argued that, although repressive, the Islamic Republic offers significant margins of freedom by regional standards. I erred in underestimating the brutality and cynicism of a regime that understands the uses of ruthlessness."

Which is what we tried to tell him. Welcome back from the Dark Side, Mr. Cohen.


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