From Lloyd Grove:
Human-rights activists are scorching The New York Times for taking almost a million dollars in advertising from the blood-soaked country of Sudan, whose leaders … promote slavery and genocide on a grand scale.
“I practically fell off my seat on the subway this morning. I could not believe it,” Human Rights Watch program director Iain Levine told me about the eight-page advertising supplement, for which The Times charged the Sudanese an estimated $929,000 for yesterday’s New York-area editions.
The ad copy — by international image consultants Summit Communications — touts Sudan’s “peaceful, prosperous and democratic future” and complains about international media coverage “focused almost exclusively on the fighting between rebels and Arab militias” in Darfur…
Times spokeswoman Catherine J. Mathis said: “We accepted this special advertising section … in our strong belief that all pages of the paper — news, editorial and advertising — must remain open to the free flow of ideas. In accepting it, we do not endorse the politics, trade practices or actions of the country or the character of its leaders.”
Hmmm….free speech? How ’bout free money?
(Image via IPI Global Journalist)