March 20, 2008

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Five years later: Analyzing the costs, benefits of Iraq war

“Americans reflect on 5 years in Iraq, the Chicago Tribune said on a day that reflection appeared on many U.S. front pages.

“Five Years Later: No end in sight as deaths, price tag climb,” said The State in Columbia, S.C. Like many newspapers, it paired varying views of the war in reporting on the fifth anniversary: “Bush: War a Success/Critics: We Disagree.” “Mix of Pride, Pain,” said The Sun of Baltimore, which included a Maryland story on “3 soldiers take look back” and a story from Washington: “Bush defends invasion.”

In a photo illustration, The Oklahoman of Oklahoma City remembered “Iraq and the Oklahomans who died there.” The Register-Guard of Eugene, Ore., asked: “What has it cost Oregon?” and answered in the numbers killed. The Lincoln Journal Star highlighted a new book by Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel, a Republican: “War in Iraq was ‘a historic blunder.’”

Gulf News in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, pictured American officials in its analysis of the war: “They Came, They Lied, They’re Gone.” The Guardian of London, named one of the “World’s Best-Designed Newspapers” by the Society for News Design, pulled dueling quotes from Bush and a Baghdad resident.

Heavy rains and deadly flooding filled top headlines in the central U.S. In Ohio, The Columbus Dispatch used a map and charts in “Gauging the flow” of floodwaters. In Arkansas, the Democrat-Gazette of Little Rock printed an aerial photo and said: “Roads closed in 20 counties; every river likely to overflow.” “Crests in coming days could top levees, set records,” said the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in Missouri.

The weather forecast also got prominent play in other locations. “Spring is here. No, really,” said the Sun Journal of Lewiston, Maine. On this first day of spring, The News Journal of Wilmington, Del., was one newspaper that printed an AP story about the effect global warming is having on the season. Today’s photo comes from The Gillette News-Record in Wyoming, where the first day of spring is a slap in the face. “Still getting hit with snow,” its caption said.

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

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