In an earlier post (Unfair Treatment of Germany in the Press) I pointed out how the press had created controversy where there was none and had attempted to make modern day Germany look like a throwback to the Nazi era. The international media were drooling over a false report that the German government had denied access to a war memorial site for a movie production because the star was Tom Cruise. A week or so after the press frenzy, the German government stated that the memorial was closed to all filming because of an incident back in 2003 and it had nothing to do with anyone's religion.
So now it's a couple of months later and the movie company has been granted permission to film in the memorial (Cruise movie gets OK to film at key site).
So let's review what actually happened:
- A right-wing anti-religious extremist politician made a post to her personal web-site saying that the German Military wouldn't allow the movie to be shot at the war memorial because of the religious beliefs of Tom Cruise.
- Some over zealous reporter saw it.
- Without verifying it's accuracy the media started reporting it as fact.
- A few days later the German Military said they didn't have the authority to say "yes" or "no" to filming because they were not in charge of the building.
- A few days after that the Finance Ministry said they didn't allow any filming in the building because of an incident in 2003.
- Two months later the movie company convinces the Finance Ministry that they will treat the memorial with respect and the Finance Ministry says "okay".
Once more I call for an official apology to the German Government and especially to the German People from the reporters who told lies and passed around false information in a blatant attempt to paint Germany in a very bad light.
Freedom of the press will be lost if the press doesn't take some responsibility for what they report.