December 7, 2007

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Interrogation videos top metros; faith speech interpreted differently

At a time when the interrogation and detention of terror suspects are being debated, major U.S. newspapers reported today that the “CIA Destroyed Videos Showing Interrogations.”

The Washington Post called the disclosures “startling.” “Videos Weren’t Provided to a 9/11 Panel or Court During Terrorism Trial,” The New York Times said. The Los Angeles Times added context: “Critics say the action hampers efforts to hold agents accountable for the use of harsh tactics on terrorism suspects.” The Chicago Tribune pictured an al-Qaida suspect who appeared on one of the tapes.

On the campaign trail, GOP candidate Mitt Romney spoke about faith as he tries to become the first Mormon president. “Candidate says beliefs would help, not hurt,” said The Eagle of Bryan-College Station, Texas, where Romney spoke at the George Bush Presidential Library. “Romney vows a balance on religion,” The Boston Globe said. “Romney speech champions ‘Symphony of faith,’” the Deseret Morning News in Salt Lake City, Utah, said. Its coverage included an essay by a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is headquartered in Utah. From the Bible Belt, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette in Little Rock said: “Romney tackles concerns about his faith.”

A day after a teenage gunman killed eight at a shopping mall in Nebraska, the Omaha World-Herald featured “The eight lives taken.” The paper devoted its front page to the shooting, including an essay by a police officer who was among the first to arrive at the mall. The Lincoln Journal Star pictured a memorial service: “Hurting, mourning, remembering.”

Today is Dec. 7, the 66th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, and the Wyoming Tribune-Eagle honored “The last 5” — five living Cheyenne veterans. The Honolulu Advertiser and The Oklahoman in Oklahoma City detail today’s dedication of the USS Oklahoma Memorial in Hawaii. “429 who died on Dec. 7 finally get their memorial,” The Advertiser said. The Oklahoman’s front page offered historical background — the ship “suffered the second-highest loss of life at Pearl Harbor” — and referred to Web coverage of the dedication.

kkennedy@freedomforum.org Kate Kennedy is front-pages editor at the Newseum.

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