They'll be hunting for Iraq's most elusive police captain, Jamil Hussein, and embedding for general reporting, with media accreditation from the New York Post.
Our overarching goals are two-fold:
1) to report on how the troops perceive mainstream media coverage of the war (with a particular focus on the wire services relying on local stringers); and
2) to report on progress and interaction between U.S. troops and Iraqi Army trainees.
The "Jamil Hussein" story is one important item on our agenda, but not the only one. As Curt and other bloggers on this story have noted from the beginning, Jamilgate isn't just about "Jamil Hussein." Bryan and I plan to do as much on-the-ground reporting as we can to nail down unresolved questions--not only about Jamil Hussein and the Hurriya six burning Sunnis allegations, but also about the AP four burning mosque story discrepancies and the many other AP sources that our military has publicly challenged--including "Lt. Maitham Abdul Razzaq" and more than a dozen police officers listed by U.S. military spokesman Navy Lt. Michael Dean. There's also the issue of detained AP photographer Bilal Hussein. And we are looking forward to reporting first-hand on the security situation in Iraq outside the so-called "Green Zone" (International Zone) and talking to as many American and Iraqi Army troops with insights on these and other broader matters.
Michelle has also upped the ante by asking Eason Jordan to consider putting the money he would have put toward her trip toward sending AP Executive Editor Kathleen Carroll to the Sandbox.
"Questioning their integrity and work ethic is simply offensive," she wrote. "It's awfully easy to take pot shots from the safety of a computer keyboard thousands of miles from the chaos of Baghdad."
Will she mosey away from her computer keyboard?
For crying out loud. We know his name, his rank, and where he works. How frigging hard is it for the media to make a few visits and a few more phone calls and ascertain whether anyone's ever heard of him or not.
In the meantime, you can check out Jamil Hussein at his new blog:
OK, the truth is I made up the thing with the burned bodies. Big deal! Have you never made anything up? After Bilal Hussein got arrested, the AP stringers moved down a few names in the Baghdad phone book and started calling me for stories. So I said, "Hey, dude, I don't know anything."
But these AP guys protested and said "Your last name is Hussein! You have to know something!"
I told them that half the people in Iraq are named Hussein but they didn't believe me.
I knew the blogosphere would turn him up before the AP did!