The Cost of Iraq and Afghanistan Wars
A story in the Toronto Daily News for March 11 is a bad example of good journalistic work. The lead, which is the main place where readers need to know what the story is about is confusing.
The writer presented President Bush's $3.2 billion request to Congress to fund the wars in Irag and Afghanistan but suggested or seem to suggest that the $3.2 billion is for the additional 8,200 needed in Afghanistan only.
this story got more confusing in the third paragraph when the writer failed to tell readers whether the 4,400 additionnal troops the president needs for Iraq is different from the 7,000 additional troops mentioned in the same paragraph. Bad news story.
The same story in the Financial Time was an excellent. An example of professional journalistic work. The lead informed readers that the 8,200 additional troops are for Iraq and Afghanistan. Then the lead told readers rightaway that this will cost taxpayers $3.2 billion. Very straightforward.
We found more details in the fourth paragragh when the reporter said that Bush will send a further 4,700 troops to complement the military ‚Äúsurge‚Ä? in Iraq that began in Feb. The new troops will include 2,400 combat support troops and 2,200 military police to deal with the expected rise in detainees as US and Iraqi forces clamp down on sectarian militias, the Financial Time said.
In the eigth paragraph, the writer provided more important information for readers:The US military death toll for Iraq and Afghanistan has risen to 3,553, while more than 25,000 have suffered non-fatal injuries. Iraq Body Count, a group that monitors Iraqi deaths, conservatively estimates that as many as 64,273 may have died since the 2003 invasion.
My criticism of this piece is that the writer failed to mention what the two wars have cost the taxpayers in contrast to about the human cost both America and Iraq. Read it at: