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Updated 10:00 AM March 14, 2005
 

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Award-winning journalist to discuss Iraq war

Some people see America's intervention in Iraq as a dramatic step that ultimately will free the Arab world from resentment and repression. Others see it as a reckless gamble with financial, humanitarian, and even terrorist repercussions that will afflict the United States for years to come.
(Photo courtesy Department Of Communications Studies)

For the last three years, James Fallows has reported extensively for the Atlantic Monthly about the making of Iraqi policy and its overall place in American security. Fallows, a national correspondent for the Atlantic and prize-winning author and journalist, will be on campus for the Department of Communications Studies' Howard R. Marsh Center Lecture, "Iraq: How Did it Happen?" at 4 p.m. March 15 in Palmer Commons Forum Hall. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Fallows' 2002 article, "Iraq: The Fifty First State" won the National Magazine Award, and his "Blind into Baghdad," in 2004, was a finalist for several prizes.

He will examine the performance of the American military, the American political establishment, and the American press in the time since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and the likely long-term implications of America's involvement in Iraq. In addition, he will discuss how, when and whether or not the United States is likely to get out of Iraq.

Fallows says that his talk will assess the performance of America's military, its political parties, its diplomats—and its press—in dealing with Iraq, and will explore the likely long-term effects of America's latest war.

According to Fallows, two years after Saddam Hussein was toppled, the violence and disorder in Iraq is far greater than American officials predicted—but the signs of possible democratic developments in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Egypt are more promising than most opponents of the war foresaw.

"We admire Fallows' work enormously," says Susan Douglas, professor and chair of communications studies. "His book 'Breaking the News' was an especially important critique of the decline of television news. We're very much looking forward to hearing his analysis of the war in Iraq."

Established in 1974 through an endowment from Howard R. Marsh, the center bearing his name supports colloquia, workshops, and mini-courses and provides research grants to department faculty and graduate students studying long-range factors that affect the ability of news media to perform their function in a democratic society.

More information about the Howard R. Marsh Center can be found at http://www.lsa.umich.edu/comm/research/research_facilities/marsh.

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