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Kind Words from the Critics

Robert Mugabe.

FRONTLINE/World's final TV report of the season goes inside Zimbabwe to find a broken country.

Our season finale this week was exceptional in that all three of our stories -- from Zimbabwe, Mexico and China -- were reported and produced by women who graduated recently from the University of California at Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism. Tim Goodman, the TV critic at the San Francisco Chronicle, took note of this in his popular blog, "The Bastard Machine." This is what he had to say...

"Frontline/World" has always been the little international news magazine that could. It's also been one of those efforts made far away from the bright lights (and the shallow end) of national network and cable news. The work done on "Frontline/World" has been relentlessly good and important but often accomplished somewhere off the radar. I've been as guilty as anyone else in my business of not giving the series greater exposure. In fact, few people even know that Frontline, based out of WGBH in Boston, has offices for "Frontline/World" at the Graduate School of Journalism at U.C. Berkeley.

It's a unique collaboration and one that Grad School dean Orville Schell was instrumental in nurturing. It's not only been good for the school -- as a training ground for young, professional journalists - but has helped Frontline tap a new generation of reporters who believe in the mission of international reporting. On Tuesday at 9 p.m. on KQED, for the first time since "Frontline/World" was created, all three stories on the program will be reported and produced by recent Berkeley graduates.

"Zimbabwe: Shadows and Lies"
comes from Alexis Bloom and Cassandra Herrman. They graduated in 2001. "Mexico: A Death in the Desert" is by Claudine LoMonaco and Mary Spicuzza. They graduated in 2004. And "China: The Women's Kingdom" comes from Xiaoli Zhou, who graduated in 2005. It's nice to see all of these "stories from a small planet" start out in Berkeley.

And we are pleased to see that TV reviewer Denise Duguay at The Gazette in Montreal, Canada, not only praised our Zimbabwe lead story, but called attention to our "superb website." We take great pride in the FRONTLINE/World Web site, which we continue to publish year round. We hope you will visit often this summer to watch "Rough Cut," our ongoing series of online videos, and to read our latest Dispatches from our correspondents around the globe.


Montreal, Quebec, Canada
I watched your show, "Zimbabwe: Shadows and Lies", recently and it completly moved me. I am a Zimbabwean refugee living in Canada. I left Zimbabwe in 2001 when things were starting to get bad. When I saw the program showing the torture, human abuse for a political agenda, lack of basic food, political threats on national broadcast and basically disregard for human life, I was brought to tears. I still have family there and when I communicate with them they try to explain how bad the situation is, but I guess being in the western world you don't really understand the gravity of the situation until you see it. What really hurts me is that this is Zimbabweans inflicting pain on other Zimbabweans for a political agenda and personal wealth. I also don't understand why a minority few would risk the lives of the entire country just to get richer even though through corruption they have enough wealth to ensure generations of their families never have to work again.I want to personally thank Alexis Bloom and Cassandra Herrman and all those envoled in the project for risking their lives to expose an evil being ignored by the world. You have put a face and a voice to millions of people crying out for help and being ignored. I also thank you on behalf of the millions who have been silenced by Robert Mugabe and dream of a better life after him.
Although I am safe now, I still have family back home whom I would like to protect so please do not use my name if you publish this.