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It's taken 18 years made its name in Hollywood. but Media Watch has finally I'm Monica Attard. Hello and welcome to the show. More on Liz Taylor after this break.

pay the bills. Pity, John. Because those people to sponsors and advertisers. John Laws isn't usually this unkind the customer satisfied? Whatever happened to keeping satisfied, When it comes to keeping readers for a magazine than a big exclusive. there's nothing better was positively gushing The editor of 'Vogue Australia' sparkling interview about the magazine's with a largely reclusive superstar. But was there any interview at all? to Elizabeth Taylor The answers attributed

"Interview with a Rock Star" in 'Vogue's mostly word-for-word, had already been published, in five other publications. interview with Liz There's Michael Kors' exclusive in American 'Harper's Bazaar'.

over a cuppa to speak face-to-face When Michael Kors sat down with Dame Elizabeth, she let fly at those pesky paparazzi uttered to 'Vogue'. in the same words she supposedly for the star's jewellery And the inspiration

about her. that features in almost every story printed in 'Vogue', All in all, of the 19 answers that came from somewhere else. Media Watch has found 15 'Larry King Live' on CNN, There were direct quotes taken from website, from the 'House of Taylor' jewellery website. and from the 'All Great Quotes' How did this happen? a face-to-face interview Vogue says it requested with Elizabeth Taylor. When that wasn't possible, to Dame Elizabeth's PR people. they settled on emailing questions Then Vogue waited for months. jewellery rep in Sydney, Dame Elizabeth's House of Taylor the actress's LA rep to deliver. Christine Bookallil, urged advertise Dame Elizabeth's sparklers. Wouldn't be good to lose a chance to gear and fired back some material. In L.A., Stephen Roseberry got into the answers 'Vogue' published? But who actually assembled We asked Christine Bookallil. But instead of answering herself,

what she couldn't for 'Vogue' she organised for us

welcome Dame Elizabeth Taylor Ladies and Gentleman please make speaking directly to Media Watch.

So how's that? by Hollywood royalty - Being ticked off that's presuming, of course, the leading lady herself calling us. that unlike in 'Vogue' it was As though that wasn't enough,

was on the phone to us too Dame Elizabeth's lawyer But his story was a little different. threats come with air kisses. Very. Only in Tinseltown could legal was 'There's One Born every Minute' - Elizabeth Taylor's first movie was the sucker. this time it seems 'Vogue' But it doesn't excuse 'Vogue'. It does. It agreed to the contrived process the leading lady's rewarmed words. that served up its readers the Hollywood Hills behind. Let's leave the first to report Bettina Arndt was far from four days is committing suicide. that one farmer every

one Australian farmer And a recent study saying commits suicide suicide every four days... But with one farmer committing four days committing suicide. An average of one male farmer every in Australia, And if the story had appeal the interest of overseas editors. it was matched by

In the 'Times' of London - in London and Cairo, From Kuala Lumpur to New Zealand, and Hong Kong, from Africa to Scotland, Toronto committing suicide every four days the story of an Australian farmer

was news. The problem is,

the current drought. that statistic has nothing to do with looking at suicide rates It comes from an academic paper

between 1988 and 1997. one and two decades old. The figures are between roughly every six days, not four. Even then, it was a farmer suiciding is hopelessly flawed. To link it with the current drought

national drought in that period. There was no similar So where did the story come from?

went straight to the source. On 3AW in Melbourne, Neil Mitchell did cite the old academic paper, In its media release, Beyond Blue

to the fine print. but many journalists didn't get Bettina Arndt did. such an old figure? So why did she use

But things have changed. Since 1997, has dropped by close to 20%. the annual suicide rate in Australia in the bush too. You'd expect the rate has fallen Suicide using a gun - 10 years ago - is down markedly. the most common method in the bush tried to point out the dangers A lone health reporter

of using the old data.

weren't being told And it wasn't as if other reporters the statistic was being misused. tried his hardest. One public health expert

'The Weekly Times' in Melbourne Mr Denner was dismissed by all except and ABC regional local radio. heard him out, But while the ABC's Kathy Bedford wrong figures was important. she questioned whether using Well, yes, it does matter.

roughly every four hours. One Australian commits suicide for public health issues There's precious little money

like depression, rates are higher than in cities. especially in the bush where suicide

The triggers are complex. caused by the drought, But if we're told it's all a crisis when it starts to rain? will we keep caring 3AW's Neil Mitchell told us: an anecdotal version I thought. What Jeff gave us was really He didn't quote precise figures. accepted it on face value. He gave us an estimate and I I was surprised by the figure. and he justified it. I questioned him about it with a headline-grabbing stat Anecdotes rammed home don't do rural Australians justice. that's old and irrelevant of the problems. They deserve a real understanding As well as a good bit of rain. That's it from us tonight. at the same time. We're back next week So we'll see you then. yours very truly. As they say in Hollywood, Captioning and Subtitling Captions by International.

CC

Good evening. Australia and Japan

China has nothing to fear from a Good evening. Australia and Japan say

security pact due to be signed in

Tokyo tomorrow. Prime Minister John

Howard has gone to Japan to sign the

security and defence agreement with

his counterpart, Shinzo Abe. The

agreement will result in closer

security ties, including joint

military training and intelligence

sharing. Mr Howard says the pact is

not aimed at containing China. The

Prime Minister says today's

near-record approval ratings for

Kevin Rudd are bad news for the

Coalition, but he intends to keep up

the pressure on the Labor leader.

Today's AC Nielsen poll shows the

Coalition would have suffered a

dramatic defeat if the election had

been held last weekend. Approval

ratings for Labor and for Kevin Rudd

are at historic levels, despite the

sustained attack on the Opposition

Leader's integrity. Cyclone-battered

Port Hedland has escaped further

damage after a second cyclone hit

damage after a second cyclone hit the Pilbara today. Cyclone Jacob crossed

the coast this afternoon, bringing

with it strong winds and rain. The

Category 1 storm has caused flooding

but was nowhere near the severity of

Cyclone George which devastated the

region last week. Now, tomorrow's

national weather - late

national weather - late thunderstorms for Darwin, morning showers in

Sydney, mainly fine in Brisbane and

Hobart and fine elsewhere.

Hobart and fine elsewhere. 'Lateline' is along just after 10:30. Goodnight.

Tonight on the show -

Australians on the front line.

What's your strategy for ware

and plan for peace in Iraq and

Afghanistan? Are we on the

right track, playing sheriff of

the South Pacific, and are we

prepared for a terrorist attack

at home? CC (APPLAUSE)

Good evening. Welcome to the

show. Australia currently has

almost 3,000 troops deployed in

conflicts from Iraq and

Afghanistan to East Timor and

the Solomons. To debate our

strategy and the critical

choices ahead, please welcome

tonight's panel. On my left,

David Fawcett, formerly a

Lieutenant Colonel with 22

years' experience in the army,

including as a test pilot and

commander of a research unit in

the RAAF, and now the federal

Lib member for Wakefield in

South Australia. Next,

Professor hue white, a

strategic analyst from the ANU

in Canberra and a former senior

adviser to Prime Minister Bob

Hawke and Defence Minister Kim Beazley. Peter Tinley, until

recently a Major in the SAS

with 25 years in the army,

including the role of lead

tactical planner for our SAS

forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.

He is now seeking election to

the Federal Parliament as Labor

candidate for Stirling in

Western Australia. And Dr Rod

Lyon of the Australian

Strategic Policy Institute in

Canberra. Since 2005, an

international security adviser

to the Federal Government and

former conflict analyst at the

University of Queensland. Welcome, gentlemen. (APPLAUSE)

Our troops have always had a

travelling artist, so here

again with his sketch pad,

cartoonist Warren Brown. Thanks

very much, Jeff. I think the

term is "official war artist".

I could never figure out how to

get people to stop fighting and

pose! I have my pen and paper

at the ready. Thank you,

Warren. Let's move first to the

front lines. President Bush has

announced at the weekend an

even bigger surge in troop

numbers, bringing the American

total in Iraq to more than

160,000. This comes as Britain

begins to reduce its troops and

the Democrats in Washington

propose bringing home US combat

troops by August next year. So

Hugh White, are we any closer

to President Bush's goal of a democratic and secure Iraq,

free of terrorism, and does

Australia have a plan for

withdrawing our troops? Jeff, I

think we're still a very long

way from the objectives that

George Bush and for that matter

John Howard have set for

themselves in Iraq. I think the

prospects of Iraq evolving into

a stable, democratic society

that can look after its own

security and so on are as

remote as ever. I think last

year was a very bad year in

particular, and I think the

surge of troops that has been

undertaken by the United States

under Bush is very unlikely to

make a sig --

significant difference for

that. As for an exit strategy,

though, it's very hard to see

how the coalition forces can

withdraw from Iraq without

running two very big risks. The

first is that the situation in

Iraq will get worse than it is

today. The second is that an American coalition withdrawal would destabilise the Middle

East in particular by giving

Iran more opportunities to

cause more mischief. For both

of those reasons, the chances

of getting out are pretty

slender. Rod Lyon? I think if

anything, when you look at

Iraq, what you see is that

disintegrated pressures are in

fact growing. We're less close

now to having a union need

democratic Iraq than we were a

couple of years ago, and if you

look at maybe the first two or

three years of intervention, it

looked for a while there like

we might pull it off. That is,

we actually had a election, we

actually had a majority

government form up but

particularly since the bombing

of the Golden Mosque in Samarra

in February last year, what you

see is a quickening sectarian

struggle that looks like a

civil war. Some of the reasons

people don't want to call it a

civil war is that it's actually

too messy to be a civil war.

But it's not just Shia versus

Sunni, it's moderate Sunni

versus extremist Sunni and Shia

militia versus other Shia

militia as well. So I think

you're not near Vic treed and

the people who are possibly the

shrewdest analyst of the surge

say that with the surge you're

not fighting not to lose and

losing is unacceptable here but

victory is probably

unobtainable in terms. Original

objectives. Peter Tinley you

were there. Does this talk of victory mean anything to you

now? Does it make sense? No.

Any talk of victory now doesn't

make any sense whatsoever. The

definition of success might be something we could discuss,

because we really need to

consider at the end of it all

particularly one option is a

partitioned Iraq where a fairly

strong Kurdish homeland in the

north, which the Turkish and

Iranians might not be too happy

about and something

approximating some sort of Shia

and Sunni homeland, but when

the last American gets on a

plane and goes home, there will

still that very day I

guarantee, an explosion

somewhere in Iraq will take

somebody's life. Because at the

heart of this the most funnel

mental thing is a power struggle. When you knock off a

stable regime, regardless of

what you think of the despot

that was in charge, when you

create the vacuum, power abhors

a vacuum and it filled in. This

is nothing more than a power

struggle and an opportunity to

grab power and I suspect we'll

see the rise of potentially, as

another option, either in part

or in whole, of another

strongman. David Fawcett, with

Australian troops there trying

to change this situation, have

we made the right call or

should they be next door in Afghanistan, bolstering that

attack which was where the

original terrorist camps

where? I don't think you can

split the two. Even this

weekend, the kidnapping of the German nationals with an objective of actually getting

the Germans to pull out of

Afghanistan shows that in the

minds of people over there,

those two conflicts are

related, 'cause people tend to

look at victory and they tend

to look at it in the additional

sense of nation state versus

nation state. If we were ever

going to see that we've seen it

it already. Two other things we

need to look at, one is the war

of civility, if you like,

trying to establish the

security such that civil

infrastructure, a method of

government and the trust of

people to actually put their destiny in the hands of that government, that still has to

be won. But there's also the

broader conflict that is

occurring and that is because

of the rise of militant Islam

that is crossing Afghanistan

into Iraq as well as a number

of neighbouring countries, and

that is a war we won't see a

quick victory on. As far as