Eight uninterrupted minutes of news reporting on the Marines in Marjah. That's what I heard this morning on the way to the office. Obviously, I wasn't listening to any of the local news shows. And I wasn't listening to CNN or Fox. I was listening to National Public Radio's Morning Edition. And I heard detailed reporting about the situation faced by our Marines. I learned that they are extremely concerned about their impact on the civilians in the town, to the point of allowing Taliban fighters to flee to the surrounding hills rather than risk killing civilians. I learned that they are struggling with extremely restrictive fire orders. I heard that our Marines from India Company discovered more than twenty IEDs in the first moments of the battle, some hidden just on the other side of a wall next to where our Marines had bunked down for the night.
I learned all of this and more, because NPR still produces news. Real news. And they give it to me in large enough segments that I can understand not only the top stories but also the smaller, less reported information that provides the context.
Thank you, NPR, for reminding me what news can be.