Blackwater supplies private contractors to fight
in Iraq
In this week's Listening Post, Richard Gizbert looks at the Blackwater story and asks what took the media so long to get involved? And we explore the wonderful world of fonts and find out what the typeface you choose says about you.
US security firm Blackwater, which supplies private contractors to fight the war in Iraq, hit the headlines this week. The Iraqi government released a report stating that 38 Iraqis have been killed by Blackwater personnel since 2003. The government says it wants the company out of the country within six months.
It is only when incidents like this September's gunfight in Baghdad in which 17 civilians were killed that Blackwater grabs the headlines. The bigger story of the 'outsourcing' of war to private contractors has largely been ignored by the mainstream media. We spoke to one of the few journalists to highlight this issue, Bill Sizemore, who writes for the Virginia Pilot, a local newspaper in Norfolk, Virginia, which is just 50km away from Blackwater's headquarters. He has been investigating the company since 2004.
We find out what the typeface you choose says
about you
In our other big story this week we delve into the world of fonts and find out how the choice of typeface can make or break a publication.
We catch up with the guru of newspaper and magazine design, Mario Garcia, who has revamped The Wall Street Journal, Liberation, Vanity Fair and Die Zeit among others.
He explains what different fonts say about the personality, politics and history of a publication.
We also meet director Gary Hustwit who loved the typeface Helvetica so much he made a film about it.
Heads finally roll over the 'Crowngate' scandal
In Newsbytes, we report on the other big media stories of the week. In the UK, heads finally rolled over the 'Crowngate' scandal. Earlier this year the BBC screened a trailer, which seemed to show the Queen losing her temper with photographer Annie Leibovitz.
But the footage of her apparently storming out of a photo session was taken out of context and actually showed her arriving. Peter Fincham, the controller of BBC One, and Stephen Lambert, the head of the independent production company that made the documentary, have both resigned as a result.
Investigators in Moscow say they know who pulled the trigger in the murder of journalist Anna Politkovskaya, but they still do not know who ordered the killing. And in Egypt, 22 newspapers refused to publish for one day in protest at the court case against Al-Dustour editor, Ibrahim Essa.
Last but not least, our internet video of the week, it is a farewell song from the only Icelander in Iraq, who is packing up and returning home.
Watch this episode of The Listening Post here:
Part 1:
Part 2:

This episode of The Listening Post aired from Friday 12 October 2007
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