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Old 2010-04-05, 20:44   #1
garo
 
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Default Wikileaks reveals video Pentagon tried to cover up

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010...my-iraq-attack

Quote:
In the recording, the helicopter crews can be heard discussing the scene on the street below. One American claims to have spotted six people with AK-47s and one with a rocket-propelled grenade. It is unclear if some of the men are armed but Noor-Eldeen can be seen with a camera. Chmagh is talking on his mobile phone.
One of the helicopter crew is then heard saying that one of the group is shooting. But the video shows there is no shooting or even pointing of weapons. The men are standing around, apparently unperturbed.
The lead helicopter, using the moniker Crazyhorse, opens fire. "Hahaha. I hit 'em," shouts one of the American crew. Another responds a little later: "Oh yeah, look at those dead bastards."
One of the men on the ground, believed to be Chmagh, is seen wounded and trying to crawl to safety. One of the helicopter crew is heard wishing for the man to reach for a gun, even though there is none visible nearby, so he has the pretext for opening fire: "All you gotta do is pick up a weapon." A van draws up next to the wounded man and Iraqis climb out. They are unarmed and start to carry the victim to the vehicle in what would appear to be an attempt to get him to hospital. One of the helicopters opens fire with armour-piercing shells. "Look at that. Right through the windshield," says one of the crew. Another responds with a laugh.
Sitting behind the windscreen were two children who were wounded.
After ground forces arrive and the children are discovered, the American air crew blame the Iraqis. "Well it's their fault for bringing kids in to a battle," says one. "That's right," says another.
Initially the US military said that all the dead were insurgents. Then it claimed the helicopters reacted to an active firefight.
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Old 2010-04-05, 20:49   #2
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HuffPo has a huge headline.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/0..._n_525569.html
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Old 2010-04-05, 22:41   #3
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But as long as the "good soldiers" are doing their regular killing of "30 militants", all is well.

(Do a Google search of [kill "30 militants"] and you'll be amazed how many times those 30 apparently-quite-resilient militants have been killed. Why they can't they just stay dead, already?)
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Old 2010-04-06, 08:15   #4
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Very subdued headlines this morning in the mainstream newspapers. This story is being given a "decent" quiet burial by the MSM.

What I find most disturbing is the complete cover-up by the Pentagon. I don't see how anyone can put any credibility on anything that comes out of the mouth of a military or Pentagon spokesperson. But the MSM duly reports anything they say as fact.
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Old 2010-04-06, 13:49   #5
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This makes the case quite eloquently for increased transparency.

Quote:
Originally Posted by garo View Post
I don't see how anyone can put any credibility on anything that comes out of the mouth of a military or Pentagon spokesperson. But the MSM duly reports anything they say as fact.
(emphasis added)

Source?
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Old 2010-04-06, 13:57   #6
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Just read all the commentary man. Every time the military claims they killed x insurgents, the press duly reports this as fact. They never use qualifying terms like "alleged" or "claim" when dealing with Pentagon statements but regularly use such terms to preface comments by human rights organizations and others. Just look at the reporting of this 2007 incident at the time from the archives.
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Old 2010-04-06, 14:39   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garo View Post
Just read all the commentary man. Every time the military claims they killed x insurgents, the press duly reports this as fact. They never use qualifying terms like "alleged" or "claim" when dealing with Pentagon statements but regularly use such terms to preface comments by human rights organizations and others. Just look at the reporting of this 2007 incident at the time from the archives.
Here's the search I used to locate articles:
http://news.google.com/archivesearch...0&as_scoring=a

I found that most of the articles (actually, all the ones I read that were about that incident*) did use qualifying terms. E.g. the Beeb article, which appeared to qualify all such information:
Quote:
Two of them, Namir and Saeed, were killed by the US military during what it says was a battle with insurgents.
[...]
The US military said its troops were carrying out a planned raid when they came under fire in the capital's New Baghdad district. They called in support from Apache helicopter gunships.

"Nine insurgents were killed in the ensuing fire fight," it said in a statement. "One insurgent was wounded and two civilians were killed during the fire fight. The two civilians were reported as employees for the Reuters news service."

It is known they were injured after the Apaches opened fire, but it is still not clear exactly how the two men died.
* The only article about the incident I read which did not use qualifiers was an early one which only stated, "The U.S. military did not immediately comment on the fighting." All of its information was from Iraqis, and was fairly hostile (appropriately so!) to the US.

Last fiddled with by CRGreathouse on 2010-04-06 at 14:39
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Old 2010-04-06, 15:20   #8
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Also relevant (though I hadn't seen it when I was writing my above post):
http://www2.centcom.mil/sites/foia/r...2470AFCD6FD%7d
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Old 2010-04-06, 15:25   #9
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Yes but as the video shows, the nine killed were most likely not insurgents. They quote the military verbatim. No questioning, no statement of the simple fact that US military claims about insurgents have repeatedly been shown to be false. I mean if someone lies to you a 100 times, you won't just repeat what they say without putting in a qualifier. Or maybe you would if you were the MSM and the serial liar was your country's military.

Just repeating what the official sources say is not reporting. It is laziness. The role of a responsible media is to question what the PTB say and verify verify verify. They are failing badly at that.
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Old 2010-04-06, 16:20   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garo View Post
Yes but as the video shows, the nine killed were most likely not insurgents.
In light of the recently-released information, it seems quite possible that they were insurgents. I didn't realize this before.

Quote:
Originally Posted by garo View Post
They quote the military verbatim.
They should! A story about X and Y that says:
"Apparently, foo happened. X said, 'spam'. Y said, 'eggs'."
is not bad reporting.

Now had the article said
"Apparently, spam happened."
(that is, taking a statement of one side as fact and suppressing the other side's commentary) would be bad reporting -- but that's not what happened here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by garo View Post
No questioning, no statement of the simple fact that US military claims about insurgents have repeatedly been shown to be false.
I take this as saying:
1. The BBC article did not question the Pentagon story.
2. The Pentagon claims about insurgents have repeatedly* been shown to be false.
3. The BBC article did not state #2.

#1 is false; this makes me think you didn't read the article.

I don't know #2 to be true, in its strong form. Depending on how this is interpreted (see note), #3 may or may not be unusual.

* I guess you really mean something stronger, like "often". If the Pentagon made 5000 such claims and two were shown to be incorrect, this would not seem to merit special attention. If you did mean only "repeatedly", then #3 seems unexceptional.

Quote:
Originally Posted by garo View Post
Just repeating what the official sources say is not reporting. It is laziness.
Your implication that the BBC *only* repeated what the Pentagon said is wrong. Insofar as you are not commenting about that article but stating a general principle, I agree (with usual caveats about very early reports, etc.).

Quote:
Originally Posted by garo View Post
The role of a responsible media is to question what the PTB say and verify verify verify. They are failing badly at that.
(emphasis added)

Source?
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Old 2010-04-06, 16:49   #11
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Perhaps you should acquaint yourself with http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda_model

I read quite a lot of news everyday and while my study is not scientific and suffers from my own biases, I have yet to come across a report in the US MSM where the US military's initial version of events was strongly questioned.

The problem with the reporting is that most of it just says "Apparently, foo happened. X said, 'spam'." and forgets about the "Y said 'eggs'" bit. Word choice does matter a lot. Just adding an extra 'alleged' or 'claim' makes a huge difference to how the public perceives a story.

I was not referring to the BBC article in my response but to the general principle and as practiced by the MSM. It is now a matter of historical record that the MSM reporting in the lead-up to the Iraq war was horribly biased. It seems unlikely that they have radically changes themselves in the past few years. Some links below:
http://www.worldpublicopinion.org/pi...d=&id=&pnt=102
http://www.counterpunch.org/patrick03032007.html
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/greg-m..._b_101780.html
http://www.smirkingchimp.com/thread/12340 (read the comments on the MSM)

Quote:
The comprehensive study also touches on and illuminates the vast failures of the mainstream media; mainly their failure to offer critical scrutiny, while chiefly operating as Bush’s surrogate and disseminator in the misleading rhetoric of the dire need to take the country to war. During that critical, seminal juncture in the run up to the war, the media “creating an almost impenetrable din” that forced out nearly all dissenting views, the report revealed.
I put to you that the same thing is happening even now. If you can provide evidence to the contrary, I might be persuaded to change my mind.

Last fiddled with by garo on 2010-04-06 at 16:51
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