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Feb-24-2008 18:46TweetFollow @OregonNews
Making War Coverage a National Community ProjectSalem-News.com
Sending a reporter into harm's way is a risky business. We appreciate help from our community and from other Americans who want to see real stories about real people serving at war.
(SALEM, Ore.) - Salem-News.com reporter Tim King is preparing to visit Baghdad, Iraq in late March for four to six weeks to cover the Oregon Guard at war. This will be Tim's second trip overseas to cover the combat operations of Oregon's civilian soldiers. He will also cover operations of the U.S. Army's historic 10th Mountain Division at Kirkuk, Iraq.
Americans at large seem to have lost interest in Iraq and in spite of the fact that tens of thousands of our soldiers go on fighting and in some cases, dying there, the demand for war coverage at the American networks has never been lower.
Groups like the conservative Media Research Center say FOX News is more fair when it comes to war coverage, but Portland's local FOX affiliate which carried Tim's work from Afghanistan during the winter of 2006/07 has declined to carry the Iraq coverage of Oregon's soldiers.
Unfortunately for the Oregon National Guard, Portland, Oregon's TV stations share a seemingly equal level of disinterest when it comes to Iraq. It appears as though it is up to the Internet and new media outlets to make up the difference.
Oregon's soldiers in particular, have been sent to Iraq and Afghanistan in some cases multiple times, in an attempt to feed the machine set into motion by our federal government.
Setting out to secure the necessary resources for a journalistic mission of this nature during the Vietnam War was only a fraction of the challenge for journalists, as the nation remained glued to combat reports on TV for the duration of the war. But coverage can make a war unpopular and so the trends affecting the Iraq War are different.
If this bothers you and you support our men and women in uniform who are fighting in Iraq, then help us accomplish this trip with a high degree of success by pitching in what you can to for expenses that won't be accommodated or offset through one of our local stations.
Another option is to attach your name or your company's name specifically to some of the equipment needs that exist. The items are listed below.
There are many ways Salem-News.com can dedicate its time and resources, and we believe covering our state's guard soldiers at war is at the top of the list.
Evergreen Aviation in McMinnville is providing transportation to Kuwait, and that is a class example of how people in Oregon can come together to make this a safe and rewarding effort for all the families and friends of our brothers and sisters in uniform.
There are a number of items mentioned below, that will greatly affect the success of our work in Iraq. Tim King spent two months over the winter of 2006/07 covering the Oregon Guard in Afghanistan. That experience allows Salem-News.com to have a much clearer idea about what it takes to cover war.
Cellular phone and calling plan (International)
Good quality digital still camera
Helmet mounted video cameras (This is tentatively covered by the owner of a Michigan company that contacted Salem-News.com last week)
Dual core laptop computer
External hard drives, flash drives and SD cards
Improved body armor (Tim currently has a Salem Police SWAT vest but it does not stop the dreaded 7.62 AK-47 round as the soldier's body armor does)
Clothing items: other things such as thermals, hiking socks, military style pants
Travel Expenses: (Tim will travel from New York to Kuwait with Evergreen Aviation, but round trip travel, food and lodging costs still exist from Oregon to New York)
You can make a PayPal donation with your credit card at the bottom of the page
If any groups, individuals or companies would particularly like to raise Tim's safety level while in Iraq, please consider providing an upgraded ballistic type vest. We have already received our first $50 PayPal donation for that specific goal.
We owe a debt of gratitude to Knopp's Jewelers in Salem for providing Tim's military helmet as well as several other local businesses and individuals who assisted in Tim's coverage of the war in Afghanistan.
Making a difference
Sending a reporter into harm's way to cover the actions of our state's civilian soldiers is a risky business. We appreciate help and assistance from our community and from other Americans who want to see real stories about real people serving at war. It isn't about politics; it is about families and real people live a very tough life far from home.
Special Event: March 9th
For those who can attend, a special event will be held Sunday, March 9th at Eola Hills Winery in Rickreall, Oregon, FROM 12:30-3:00 pm. This is a Salem-News.com sponsor that was instrumental in helping us raise funds for the trip to Afghanistan.
We will bring you more information as we near the event, and look for additions to the list of needs as well. All of those who help will be credited in our war reports.
Contact Bonnie King at: firstname.lastname@example.org and tell her what you would like to do to help. Tim is the father of several boys ranging from 8 to 24 and they all appreciate the community's support in making this a safe and effective project.
To Help, donate via PayPal:
To send a check:
Other stories on Tim's upcoming war coverage in Iraq:
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