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Sunday, June 26, 2005

EXPECTATIONS EXCEEDED

“We strive to exceed the expectations our readers, advertisers and viewers have of us,” claim the publishers of the Melbourne Age. And they have! Here’s Age editor Andrew Jaspan mourning freed hostage Douglas Wood’s insensitivity:

“I was, I have to say, shocked by Douglas Wood’s use of the a—-hole word, if I can put it like that, which I just thought was coarse and very ill-thought through and I think demeans the man and is one of the reasons why people are slightly sceptical of his motives and everything else.

“The issue really is largely, speaking as I understand it, he was treated well there. He says he was fed every day, and as such to turn around and use that kind of language I think is just insensitive.”

Politenessman Jaspan believes hostages should be sensitive to murderers. He thinks someone held captive and beaten by extortionists and killers ought show some respect. And how, precisely, does Wood’s use of the term call into question “his motives”, whatever Jaspan imagines those to be?

Andrew Jaspan is a moral vacuum who should be fired. Or, alternatively, kidnapped and kicked in the head; if the little bastard complained about it afterwards, well, that would merely make us sceptical. Send letters-to-the-editor here. Cancel subscriptions here (if you haven’t already). Find Jaspan a new job back in England here. Meanwhile, yet more awful insensitivity is on display:

A hostage held alongside Australian Douglas Wood in Iraq has hired bounty hunters to track down his former captors, promising to eliminate them one by one.

Swede Ulf Hjertstrom, who was held for several weeks with Mr Wood in Baghdad, was released by his kidnappers on May 30 ...

Now, he wants to find those responsible.

“I have now put some people to work to find these bastards,” he told the Ten Network today.

“I invested about $50,000 so far and we will get them one by one.

How dreadfully coarse.

UPDATE. Hjertstrom’s pledge came during a satellite interview joined by Wood. Ten News just played a further extract:

Hjertstrom: “I invested about $50,000 so far and we will get them one by one.”

Wood: “The sooner the better!”

Hjertstrom: “These scum should be put out of business.”

Will the insensitivity never end?

Posted by Tim B. on 06/26/2005 at 07:41 AM
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