News organizations -- particularly during these days of personnel cutbacks and closed foreign bureaus -- are regularly forced to scramble when a major event occurs over a weekend. Such was the case on Sunday following word that North Korean leader Kim Jong Il had died on a train Saturday outside Pyongyang, the North Korean capital. TheWrap.com noted that the two cable news channels that rely principally on commentary rather than journalism to attract audiences gave the event short shrift. On Fox's Huckabee , it noted, the former governor was accompanying the Marshal Tucker Band on his guitar as it performed "Merry Christmas Baby." The taped program was not interrupted. MSNBC merely offered updates between episodes of Caught on Camera . Only CNN mobilized its correspondents and analysts to cover Kim's death and its ramifications, calling in its former foreign affairs correspondent Christiane Amanpour, who recently left ABC's This Week and returned to CNN. But several news outlets appeared to be at a loss to describe the significance and possible consequences of Kim's passing, several of them referring to the spoof about him ( Team America World Police ) created by South Park's Trey Parker and Matt Stone, others discussing Kim's alleged fascination with Hollywood movies, and still others jabbering on about his son's idolatry of former basketball star Michael Jordan.

19/12/2011