As is now world-famous, last week, guards for Blackwater shot down
Hentish, a dog living at The New York Times
's Baghdad compound. With the single pull of a trigger, the already P.R.-troubled
security company forced the American people to choose whether they love dogs more than they hate reporters.
But don't send Blackwater to the pound just yet. According to Eason Jordan, former CNN exec and current potentate of IraqSlogger, the Times
bureau is home to many a snarling canine. One even took a bite out of Jordan himself
It was a stunning, painful sneak attack that landed me in the emergency room of the U.S. Army's hospital in Baghdad's Green Zone.
The attacker: Scratch, one of The New York Times' Baghdad bureau dogs, whose vicious bite opened three deep gashes in my right hand, sending blood spewing in all directions.
I'm a proud dog owner, and if Blackwater or anyone else messes with Kingsley, I'm violating D.C.'s handgun ban. But it's hard not to sympathize with what Jordan writes:
Last month, a New York Times correspondent told me one of the bureau dogs bit an Iraqi in the crotch and attacked photojournalist Mike Kambers in the chest (if a dog bit me in the crotch, I might be inclined to euthanize it on the spot).
Some dogs, as George Pelecanos fictionalized so sublimely in Drama City, just need to be put down. We don't know if Hentish was one of them. But Blackwater said in a statement that Hentish had attacked one of the company's bomb-sniffing dogs. Someone loves that dog, too. And tellingly, the Times' Alissa Rubin commented that Hentish is "not a dog that everyone's close to in the compound."
No wonder former Baghdad chief John Burns prefers to focus on the bureau's cats.