What's so often missing when someone is charged with egregious conduct, as Miami Herald correspondent Carol Rosenberg was, is the follow-up. It won't happen this time. As far as her employer is concerned, the Rosenberg case has been dismissed.
Politics Daily readers will remember an extensive report last week on Rosenberg, my fellow Guantanamo Bay reporter over the past half-dozen years. Navy Cmdr. J.D. Morgan had filed a formal complaint with her newspaper, charging Rosenberg with "sexual harassment" and abusive language -- really abusive language.
One example of the graphic comments Rosenberg allegedly made in frustration as she tried to get information from the Pentagon spokesman was one suggesting a place Morgan could put a "red hot poker."
In an article today, the Herald said that after an investigation of the matter, it has cleared Rosenberg, who "will continue to cover the U.S. military." According to the paper, Human Resources Vice President Elissa Vanaver sent a letter Monday to the Pentagon stating an internal investigation "did not find corroboration" of Gordon's sexual harassment accusation. Executive Editor Anders Gyllenhaal, in an e-mail to Politics Daily, explained: "We talked to dozens of people familiar with the situation. They had different interpretations of what to make of the dispute."
Rosenberg was quoted by her paper as saying, "I have been heartened by an outpouring of support by both the uniformed military who have followed my coverage and journalists who covered the story." She did not respond to requests for additional comment.
Gordon declined to comment. Gyllenhaal dismisses the complaint as "a relationship between two people that has gotten off track."
The Politics Daily piece cited conflicting views from military personnel of Rosenberg's behavior as she conducted her intense coverage of Guantanamo. One former public affairs officer there said he had "nothing but respect for Carol," though another called her "rude" and "offensive," saying Gordon's "charges did not surprise me." It its letter to defense officials, the newspaper cited the "difficulties in performing difficult jobs in difficult circumstances in roles that are by their nature conflictive."
The Herald did acknowledge Rosenberg's tendency to use "unnecessary profanity." I can personally confirm that Carol has used profanity, but never gave a moment's thought to whether it was "unnecessary."
However, the letter went on to say that as Rosenberg continues her assignment, "she will place an emphasis on professionalism." In a final shot aimed at making its position clear, the Herald urged the Pentagon to "make sure Gordon emphasizes professionalism too." All parties made it clear that it is entirely possible the two will have further dealings. It's reasonable to assume the language will be very mild.