Monday, June 12, 2017


I had a query from a ChrIs Levy of the New York Times how i felt about "Auntie", the Grey Lady": & below is how I replied. x michael 

Dear Mr. Levy,
Thank you for your communication.
Indeed, the NY Times has been part of my life since I arrived on these shores, aged 14, as the dependent of a U.S Army officer, and it helped me acquire 99 percentile rating in my college entrance history exam in just a few years - which was the first serious hint that most U.S. citizen know beans about their history if a greenhorn like myself with just one history book under his belt and one semester of U..S. history albeit from and excellent New Deal prof could achieve such a percentile.
I well recall reading, catching up with back issues of the NY Times during my 1960 summer firefighting in  Alaska , and coming on a story of some Cubans being trained in Guatemala, thus the foolish Bay of PIgs war crime a year later came as an not entirely unexpected shock.

I recall the publication of the Pentagon Papers, which did not come as a surprise at all - because by that time I knew that great state crimes always have, must have a paper trail. I could tell you a lot more on that score.

I found myself quite unhappy with the Times coverage of the disintegration of Yugoslavia until Steve Erlanger became Belgrad bureau chief and the coverage became more even handed, yet the damage had been done in the exlusive blaming of Serbia and Milosevic, which then had some fallout for an author whom I was the first to publish in this country, and the NY Times coverag4 of whose work , to put it mildly, leaves miles to be desired: 

Ditto for the manner in which the Times seems to have been bamboozled into supporting and covering the conquest of Iraq. Your obit of Zhig the other day entirely forgot that that Russian hater with his destabilization of Afghanistan is singlehandedly responsible for Carter initiating the start of that calamity. Thus as I  have grown old and less gullible and more critical I have also become quite unhappy with the paper,  especially when it fails to be truly evenhanded, which invariably redounds to not just to its own but the county’s an the worlds disadvantage both in the short and the long run. 
Sincerely yours,
Michael Roloff

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