Sunday, December 28, 2008

Katrina's Untold Story

Hi all. I'm pressing pause on my epic holiday laziness to point you to an amazing piece of journalism currently running in The Nation. I know I've linked this before, but it deserves to be given a second chance for anyone that may have forgotten. "Katrina's Hidden Race War," is the result of 18 months of investigative reporting by A.C. Thompson. What he found is very real evidence of white vigilantism against African Americans in the New Orleans's neighborhood of Algiers Point following the storm.

Predominantly a white neighborhood, Algiers Point stood between desperate victims seeking rescue, and a government evacuation area. According to the reporting, at least 11 men who set out on the journey through Algiers were shot, some of them fatally. At the time of publication, none of the deaths had been official investigated. Since that time, Representative John Conyers, chair of the House Judiciary Committee, has responded to the piece's revelations. The NOPD has responded as well, making a Christmas Eve announcement that the department will be looking into the alleged crimes.

I also urge you to read Thompson's related story, "Body of Evidence," which looks at the case of a body burned in the back of a car and whether or not the NOPD were the ones that lit the match. For more info about this reporting, you can watch an interview Democracy Now's Amy Goodman conducted with Thompson about a week ago. Given Anderson Cooper's dedication to New Orleans, I'd love to see Thompson show up on 360. Finally, the Nation Institute has produced a video to accompany their vigilante reporting. It contains footage of the alleged perpetrators themselves, quite gleefully reveling in their crimes. To call it disturbing would be an understatement. Watch for yourself:


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for highlighting the shocking crimes that have taken place in Algiers. I've read some of the articles linked in this post and they are frightening and disgusting. Frankly, I'm surprised to hear that NOPD plans to investigate, considering that some of their staff members were accused of looking the other way and even participating in some of the murders. This is the kind of report that AC360 should be doing. Anderson's friends with cops in NOLA, I don't know how interested he'd be in covering something like this, but that's what being an 'objective' reporter is about. CNN did a report called the Katrina Killings, but I'm not sure if it was connected with the Algiers situation. I hope this incident gets much more widespread coverage in the media I hope that the investigations will yield some real results and convictions of those people who were involved in committing these crimes. None of them should be walking around free.

2:29 PM  

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