Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Reporters on the Job

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Reporters on the Job

Article excerpt

* All This For Me? Staff writer Sara Miller Llana called and called the Venezuela housing ministry in an effort to get an interview about the new socialist cities that President Hugo Chavez is building. She couldn't get a response. Finally, she called and asked if she could just go up alone and talk to people (she'd heard the entrance was guarded by the military).

"The next day, a media official calls me and says, the housing minister is giving a press conference about Caribia, and then we are going on a tour of the site," says Sara. "Wow! What great timing, I thought."

But Sara was surprised that the turnout at the press conference the next day, was small and partisan: it consisted of her, a Cuban journalist, and a few reporters from pro-Chavez papers.

On the bus ride to the site, Sara introduced herself to a woman who was a government press official. She responded: "I know who you are; this is why we are having the event."

Sara's not sure if that was true or not. …

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