The L.A. Times chose syndicated columnist Robert Scheer to review the Rick Bragg book on PFC Jessica Lynch, and he makes of it about what you'd expect of a guy who has been hammering the Pentagon over the Lynch episode.
Her effort to hold on to the truth of her story in the face of Pentagon spin and a media feeding frenzy is a heroic act in the Age of Hype. It has required her to draw upon reserves of strength to cut through talk-show hyperbole and a U.S. government that in its desperation for a wartime hero planted a story of combat heroics that it now admits is false.
In her insistence on telling the truth as she knows it, Lynch is a true hero in the best tradition of a nation that intuitively prefers modest honesty to grandstanding bravado...
Where Bragg fails is in his paltry investigation into the official mendacity that succeeded for a while in turning Lynch into a propaganda tool for a war that has been difficult to defend. Bragg brings none of his investigative skills to bear on uncovering the government officials who misled the media into presenting Lynch as a Rambo-type figure swiftly dispatching Iraqi Fedayeen when, in fact, a government investigation later conceded that her gun had jammed and she spent the battle huddled in prayer.
Also in the LAT today, Steve Lopez finds it odd that Gov. Schwarzenegger plans to investigate the charges of groping against himself: "I still say he should just get himself tanked and see if he spills the beans."