numbers game in Washington

The Washington Post is certainly not repeating its brave record of the Viet Nam war era. The paper has been diligent in pushing a very conservative foreign policy agenda and dramatically demonstrating its support for the war fever of the White House junta, but the coverage it gives to today's massive anti-war demonstration in the Capital, its home town, is unspeakable.

It is now after 7:30 in the evening, and the protest began this morning, but at this late hour the continuously-updated Post website reports, "Demonstrators by the hundreds [my italics] gathered near the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Saturday . . . "

Other sources, even other commercial news media, have already reported that easily tens of thousands or even over one hundred thousand people participated.

Protestor numbers are always a difficult and very political call, but It looks like the truth lies somewhere between the two hundred thousand claimed by some organizers and the twenty thousand reported by a number of press sources. [The huge range I describe reflects how bad I personally am with numbers, and the fact that I wasn't able to be there today to see for myself.] "By the hundreds" is a disgustingly transparent political call by what should be an important print and web-based news source.