Mara Revkin

Mara Revkin is an editorial intern at the Prospect.

Recent Articles

Suppressing the Truths of War

A new documentary about war correspondents shows how hard it is for them to get their stories on air and in print.

Veteran war correspondent Joe Galloway has seen so much combat, it's hard to believe he's actually a civilian. After 22 years of reporting for United Press International and U.S. News & World Report from the front lines of every major American military engagement since Vietnam, Galloway doesn't hesitate to describe war as "the most devastating and stupid of all man's enterprises." Correspondents like Galloway have built careers on their shared conviction that democracy is degraded by a perceptual gap between the gruesome realities of war and the mainstream media's sanitized portrayal of it. The discrepancy between what journalists see on assignment and what their publishers approve for dissemination to the American public is the subject of Michael Samstag's new documentary, War & Truth , which chronicles the high-risk careers of embedded war correspondents from World War II to the present day. Supplementing archival footage rescued from a military storage depot with the...

WATER ICE ON...

WATER ICE ON A HOT(TER) PLANET. Our planet's ice caps may be receding at a rate of 9% per decade, but Mars' "frigid arctic landscape" seems to be holding up just fine . NASA is preparing to launch the the 18' x 5' Phoenix Mars Lander , the Mars Scout Program's latest attempt to determine whether the Red Planet's polar environment is or ever was a "habitable zone for primitive microbes." While previous probes have been confined to Mars' equatorial region, the Phoenix will venture into the permafrost region -- believed to harbor subterranean "water ice" deposits which unlike the planet's substantial reserves of frozen H20, are theoretically capable of supporting life. But based on a NASA budget proposal for fiscal year 2008, the Phoenix might be the last probe to touch down on Mars for the foreseeable future. The Senate bill, despite allocating an overall increase in NASA's budget, includes a severe cut of $30 million in funding for planetary science missions, which will presumably be...

AND 1,774 MORE JUST LIKE THEM.

AND 1,774 MORE JUST LIKE THEM. Yesterday afternoon a bevy of child-bearing Republicans and their bewildered male companions convened at the Independent Women's Forum to lament the scientifically documented "patriotism gap" that is corrupting our nation's young people. The crowd laid waste to a hydrogenated red-white-and-blue cake while Myrna Blyth and Chriss Winston signed copies of their latest contribution to the conservative canon, How to Raise an American: 1776 Fun and Easy Tools, Tips, and Activities to Help Your Child Love This Country . Winston and Blyth dismissed the preposterous claim circulated by our "Spin Sisters" -- a designation encompassing everyone from Rosie O'Donnell to Nancy Pelosi -- that American society is in fact stratified by gross structural and economic inequalities. Can you believe those freedom-haters? Myrna's most shocking revelation, gleaned from a FOX News poll: "Nearly a quarter of our young people -- the very Americans we're counting on to keep our...

THE IDIOT'S GUIDE...

THE IDIOT'S GUIDE TO IMPERIALIST ETIQUETTE. Friday pop quiz: American success or failure in Iraq may well depend on whether the Iraqis (as the people are called) like American soldiers or not. The preceding statement was excerpted from: A) The Iraq Study Group Report (2006) B) Republic of Fear: The Inside Story of Saddam's Iraq (1990) C) A Short Guide To Iraq (1943) If you guessed the correct answer (C), you're either spending too much time trolling Ebay or lurking around the National Archives on your lunch break. For those who haven't yet discovered the War and Navy Departments' World War II-era handbook ( available in pdf format here ), it reads like an Idiot's Guide to Imperialist Etiquette (forthcoming from the State Department this fall). The handbook was originally distributed to American soldiers stationed in Iraq at a time when Hitler was still eying the region as a potential "land bridge" to Asia. It clarifies, among other things, the correct pronunciation of the country (i-...

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