Easing back into the world of TV coverage, from remotest Xinjiang. Re-entry via CNN (after a stint watching TV Monde: just too depressing to see that French, which I have not studied for 35+ years, is still 50x more comprehensible than the Chinese I'm wrestling with now. Same impression with Deutsche TV and RAI Italia, which I've studied only a little. Sigh.)

Ongoing special from Iraq, tied no doubt to the Petraeus-Crocker appearances. And every reference to the adversary in Iraq is to "al Qaeda."

* Michael Gordon, of the NYT, is interviewed and talks about the anti-US troop strategy of "al Qaeda."

* Michael Ware, usually a very, very tough critic of U.S. policy, narrates a perilous drive through Baghdad and refers maybe 50 times to "al Qaeda" threatening to attack him or Iraqi civilians.

* Anderson Cooper himself refers continually to "al Qaeda" as the author of all mayhem in Iraq.

Jeez louise! Even Petraeus's own briefing slides, which I have just seen, refer to "AQI" -- al Qaeda/Iraq, as distinguished from the actual al Qaeda that attacked the American mainland six years ago. Wasn't there a fair amount of fuss a few months ago about the Bush Administration's bait-and-switch trick in pushing the term "al Qaeda in Iraq" as a (bogus) way of stressing a link between Osama bin Laden and whoever is the enemy in Iraq? Why should CNN go along with this -- and improve on it, by dropping the "in Iraq" part? Is it that anxious about shaking its "liberal" image? Just curious.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.