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Why Roxana Saberi Matters

Roxana Saberi has some pretty high-powered voices speaking out for her release these days. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urges her prompt freedom while expressing frustration at the difficulty of the current lack of direct diplomatic contacts. The Swiss are acting as intermediaries.

As well they should, given their collusion in robbing American citizens of tax resources by their complicity in the UBS secrecy scandal. But that’s a subject for another time.

Hopefully the heavy hitters will produce speedy results and Roxana will be able to return to North Dakota and her waiting parents.

There’s a teacher waiting for her, too, one of many. And her words about Roxana, her caring, are told within the context of the larger truth about what she teaches in her journalism classes, summed up in these words she cites of Pete Hamill:

Journalists are

“chosen by the tribe to carry the torch to the back of the cave and tell others what is there in the darkness.”

That journalism, the noble kind worth practicing, is not based on how combative you can be in the White House press room, or how well you steno partisan spin to maintain your access, or any of the other warts that have befallen too much of the top o’the heap of the journalism profession.

Roxana may have been reporting beyond her legal authorization as Iranian representatives allege…once they stopped schlepping the "she bought a bottle of wine" story. Or she may have been completing her master’s degree studies and compiling material for her book-in-progress.

But for those of us who have heard and seen her reporting, here in Fargo and from Tehran, we know she has stood head and shoulders above the precious prima donnas that pose and pontificate on too much of punditized media these days.

Hers is a voice of quiet reason that spoke with clarity about the people of Iran amid all the saber-rattling that the Military Industrial Media Class has been doing during the Bushie Era.

We look forward to when that voice is restored, that child of Fargo, that woman comes home.

Please follow this link to read Cathy McMullen’s column from Fargo’s Forum Thursday. Cathy is a professor at Concordia College where Roxana was her student.
crossposted at Prairie Sun Rising

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