Reporters on the Job

Is This the Person to Whom I am Speaking? Sometimes that trusty reporter's standby, the phone book, is not so trusty. Seeking to interview Ramon Armengol, a former Spanish ambassador in the Middle East, to explore comments he had made about ETA's links with radical Arab groups, the Monitor's freelance writer in Madrid looked him up and passed his home number on to the Monitor's Peter Ford (story, p. 1). But when Peter called Sunday, Mr. Armengol was reluctant to speak. Thinking he was wary of going on the record, Peter pressed but met only with increasingly noncommittal remarks, expressed in a decidedly unambassadorial manner. It became clear there had been a mix-up. Peter finally asked him if he was in fact the man he thought he was. "Me an ambassador? Right," the man snorted with a laugh. "I'm 85 years old, but I've never been a diplomat."

Sorry, wrong Ramon Armengol.

Amelia Newcomb
Deputy world editor

From the Spanish press

It's not raining, Madrid is crying: Millions of voices cried out Sunday under the rain in the largest demonstration in Spain's history. The sky was dressed in mourning ... the rain mixed with ... tears of citizens on one of Madrid's blackest days. - La Razon, March 13

None of those who were not actually involved is guilty. But we will all be responsible [for the attacks] tomorrow. [Sunday], without vengeance, we will craft a little paper airplane to fight against our evils. A plane that lands in the ballot box. - Paloma Pedrero, La Razon, March 13

Madrid is home to [Picasso's] Guernica - a scream that is much more than a painting, a warning against barbarism, a mural in which we are reminded that we are all objects of terror - a painting whose silent groans will not permit this moment, this country, this city, to be silenced and return to the times when freedom was an adolescent dream.... - Javier Rioyo, El País, March 14

We are no longer Madrileños, or Sevillanos, or Catalans: from now on we will only be survivors of those trains run aground on the horrible track of death. For that reason, today we have to catch the train of freedom [as we vote]. - Ignacio Camacho, ABC, 14 March

Translated by Monitor contributors Lisa Abend and Geoff Pingree.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
QR Code to Reporters on the Job
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today