Friday, May 09, 2008

Pentagon, Piety and Press Pour Poison Into Nation's Ear

It is quite interesting to watch the twisted coverage of Burma on American TV. While Canadian and British news indicate that International aid agencies were on the ground in Burma and assisting with the distribution of aid, American channels are still insisting that no aid is getting through and without American (Naval) teams co-ordinating the operation it is doomed to failure. Meanwhile those who have landed and are distributing aid claim to be working well together without the overlord status of the U. S. military.

Actually both the CBC and the BBC had been reporting the disaster and leading with the story for over a day when the American networks finally stopped the narcissistic navel gazing of the endless presidential election to report that over 100,000 people had died in the latest world disaster.

This article is particularly profound in regard to the dastardly state of American media.

Death's Factotum: Michael Gordon and the Times Pour Pentagon Poison into Nation's Ear
by Chris Floyd
Monday, 5 May 2008 -->

Although Michael Gordon is probably not paid directly by the Bush Regime to peddle their propaganda, he serves precisely the same function as the military brass that the Administration embedded as "independent analysts" on the network news shows.

-->Judith Miller might have been the poster child for the corporate media's collaboration with the Bush Administration's war of aggression against Iraq -- but her New York Times colleague and co-writer, Michael Gordon, was every bit as culpable and complicit, happily playing stovepipe to the bloodthirsty bullshit gurgling up from the White House and Pentagon cesspits.
Miller is gone from the mainstream heights, but Gordon soldiers on at the Times -- literally. Although he is probably not paid directly by the Bush Regime to peddle their propaganda, he serves precisely the same function as the military brass that the Administration embedded as "independent analysts" on the network news shows -- a nefarious practice most recently exposed in great detail by...the New York Times.

But the Times, like most of our great institutions, piously follows the scriptural injunction, and lets not the right hand know what its left hand is doing. And so while it exposes television's willing collusion with White House warmongering, the paper continues its own collaboration with fomenting aggression -- this time, the conflict with Iran.
Gordon's latest is a classic of this sinister genre. He dutifully stovepipes claims by the usual unnamed "American officials" who tell him that Iranian agents have revealed that Hezbollah is training anti-American Iraqi Shiites inside Iran. This information, we are told, comes from "interrogations" of four Shiite militia members who were captured by American forces last year.
In other words, four Shiites who have been subjected to George W. Bush's beloved (and personally approved) "harsh interrogation techniques" for an entire year have -- surprise, surprise! -- told American officials exactly what they want to hear: that Iran is training Iraqi insurgents to kill Americans. Or to speak plainly and with no addition: four men have been tortured into confessions that serve the Bush Faction's militarist agenda.
But let us be absurd, and entertain for a moment the notion that Gordon's story is true; or rather, that the information tortured out of Iraqis held in indefinite detention and subjected to "strenuous interrogation" for a year is actually true, that Iran is actually using Hezbollah as a proxy to train Iraqi Shiites. The only sensible reply to such an assertion is: So what?

...experts such as Juan Cole and Nir Rosen have noted over and over, Iran's closest allies in Iraq are the same extremist factions that Bush himself now maintains in power in Baghdad, at an immense cost of American blood and treasure (not to mention the cost of a million Iraqi lives). Here's Rosen:

"The truth is, most allegations about Iran's role in Iraq and the region are unfounded or dishonest. Iran was responsible for ending the recent fighting in Basra and calming the situation after Iraqi parliamentarians who backed Prime Minister Maliki approached it. The Iranians, never close to Muqtada or his family, were so annoyed with Muqtada and his presence that they reportedly ordered him out of Iran where he had been living in virtual house arrest anyway since arriving six months earlier. Iranian officials and the state media clearly supported Prime Minister Maliki and the Iraqi government against what they described as "illegal armed groups" in the recent conflict in Basra, which is not surprising given that their main proxy in Iraq, the Supreme Iraqi Islamic Council dominates the Iraqi state and is Maliki's main backer.
The Supreme Council is of course also the main proxy for the US in Iraq and somehow in the Senate testimony it was forgotten that its large Badr militia was established in Iran and is actually the only Iraqi opposition group to have fought on the Iranian side against Iraq during the Iran-Iraq war. Moreover, the Badr militia was a branch of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard that is so demonized today, and Badr dominates the ministry of interior, if not most of Iraq at the higher echelons. But none of this openly available information made its way to the Post's editorial writers or the dominant discourse in the US.
All the while the U. S. "news" media chases Barack Obama's former minister, shadowy figures like Douglas Coe and Hagee - both of whom believe in in christian fascism under a centrist figure like Bush with no habeas corpus, and a jihad against Islam receive hardly a mention.

While the news media distracts from the greatest criminal cyclone of this century, the death of over a million civilians in Iraq from the illegal invasion and relentless bombing of their country goes on and on and on, while they are called insurgents for even resisting an invading an army.

The Bush crime family has operated above the law in the USA for over sixty years, aided and abetted by a criminally complicit "news" service that now more closely resembles the National Inquirer, a sad travesty where once there was at least some dialogue representing different opinions. Now right wing "think" (an oxymoron at best) tanks have replaced any real dialogue, while minions like Bill Bennett wax on about "liberals" sounding more like a
McCarthy redux, old, tired, paranoid and done. The press is guarding a rotting carcass of
poisoned piety, and the people are coming down the street with a very large garbage truck all set to clean up the fetid, rotting mess left by years of neglect - Godspeed.