Congrats dude. You accomplished what most ‘war correspondents’ can only dream of. You’re famous. You’re bigger than the story. You scored an enormous scoop, and I imagine it will net you speaking engagements, cherry assignments, hell probably even a book deal. And you’re a hero to all the Dems who are still smarting from Kerry’s loss and are looking for anything to bring Bush and “his” war down a notch or 2.
Of course the down-side is, you lowered morale, probably helped recruit thousands of Iraqis to the insurgency and subsequently cost dozens, if not hundreds of American lives and also contribute to the drip drip drip of MSM hits on the war that will, in time, eventually make the US public call for a withdrawal from Iraq, mission accomplished or no.
I read your apologia/explanation. I’ll be blunt. That’s a bunch of fucking bullshit. You’re experienced enough to know what the effect of what you write will be. I think you were pissing your pants with glee over the fact you had a scoop. Anything ‘anti-war’ sells and your bosses at NBC must have been stoked as well. You’d have to be an idiot not to see how it would play. I’m giving you the benefit of the doubt that you aren’t an idiot.
What you might not have expected is the backlash. Your sanctimonious and disingenuous defense shows how your little feelings have been hurt. But no one cussing or flaming you will get anyone killed. Your story will. Good job, congrats, and good luck with the book deal. I hope you can sleep at night.