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The Asylum

Welcome to the Asylum. This is a site devoted to politics and current events in America, and around the globe. The THREE lunatics posting here are unabashed conservatives that go after the liberal lies and deceit prevalent in the debate of the day. We'd like to add that the views expressed here do not reflect the views of other inmates, nor were any inmates harmed in the creation of this site.

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Monday, September 25, 2006

The Appeasement Press Gets A Much Needed Slap In The Face

Ed Morrissey took note of this column penned by Jules Crittendon. Now I had spotted this yesterday, but with so much going on around here, I barely had a chance to touch on the WaPo interview with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and even then I did that up late yesterday.

The Associated Press, the reliable just-the-facts news agency you and I once knew, no longer exists. Amoral propagandists have taken over.

It is not only in the disturbing matter of Bilal Hussein, AP photograher and al-Qaeda associate, being held without charge in U.S. custody in Iraq that this is evident. But also in the departure from balanced, nonpartisan coverage that has always been the AP’s promise to us, its customers.

The AP was, in fact, a pioneer in balanced coverage. The concept was born with the AP in 1848 and tempered in the Civil War. The AP served newspapers of different stripes and had to keep politics out of it.

But for any news organization going into war, it’s hard not to have a side. In 1876, AP scribe Mark Kellogg was killed with Custer at the Battle of Little Big Horn. “I go with Custer and will be at the death,” he reported. Guess which side he was on. In 1941, the AP had to shut its Berlin bureau when its reporters were arrested. In 1945, AP correspondent Joe Morton was executed by the SS. AP correspondents were imprisoned by communists in North Korea, Romania and Czechoslovakia. The AP’s Terry Anderson was held captive by Islamic extremists in Beirut for six years. It is a brave and illustrious history.

The AP has had one or two exemplary war correspondents in Iraq. But this strange war has changed so many things. In late 2004, as the U.S. military was moving to rid Fallujah of the terrorists who controlled it, the AP wanted some eyes inside the city. It hired Bilal Hussein. He gave the AP photos of insurgents setting up ambushes and firing at Americans. He gave them photos of terrorists posing with their freshly slaughtered victims. His pictures helped the AP win a Pulitzer Prize.

A blogger named Darleen at www.darleenclick.com said it very well in December of 2004:

“I have trouble with how cozy this AP photographer is with the terrorists. I realize he’s a Hussein from Fallujah, so his own personal feelings and associations may be on display here, but did The Associated Press . . . employ Nazis to get photos showing attacks on the Allies and the execution of Jews?”

I wish it stopped with the AP’s effort to give the enemy in Iraq a fair shake, as if terrorists were freedom fighters. Then I look at the AP copy I see nightly. The president of the United States gives a speech. The AP grants him a couple of fragmentary quotes before allowing his failed 2004 challenger and other opponents several full paragraphs to denounce him.

There is the bizarre work of Charles J. Hanley, an AP apologist for Saddam Hussein. He dismisses evidence of weapons programs and reports on the deep frustration Saddam felt when he could not convince the world of his good intentions, in those years when he was murdering his own people and playing a hard-nosed game of cat-and-mouse with U.N. weapons inspectors that led to their removal.

Last week, the AP gave us a lengthy series on the U.S. detention of terrorism suspects. The AP’s opinion was evident. Bilal Hussein was the poster boy. The salient fact that Hussein was captured with an al-Qaeda leader was buried. Al-Qaeda has killed and abducted dozens of journalists, Iraqi, American and European. Mainly Iraqi. I wonder: What’s so special about this particular Iraqi journalist that he could associate freely with al-Qaeda?

I look at Hussein’s photos. Terrorists trying to kill Americans. Terrorists posing with dead civilians. Bilal Hussein knows things about these men, who they are, how they operate. I’m thinking, Bilal Hussein looks like an accessory to murder. I’m thinking, I hope the U.S. intelligence agents who have him are getting good information out of him. And I’m wondering, who does The Associated Press want to win this war?

Michelle Malkin calls the AP the "advocacy press." Jules Crittendon asks if AP stands for "Al-Qaeda propoganda." They are both correct in their assessment of how the AP has conducted itself recently. But this goes beyond the AP. This is a disease within the whole of news media outlets.

Reuters "Fauxtogate," in which even the New York times got into the act, is a prime example of propoganda for the other side. And like Bilal Hussein, Adnan Hajj was involved in twisting the facts to suit his opinion, and damn the actual facts. There were several accounts that came out of the Israeli/Hezbollah conflict where non-indigenous journalists were told and even forced to "spin" the story in a favorable light for Hezbollah. The infamous "Green-Helmet Guy" (made "famous" by Charles @ LGF) was running a propoganda show, and what a grisly one that was. (For those unaware of this man, he paraded around as a "rescue worker" in Lebanon while hoisting dead babies for hours so the press could see them.)

But this also goes even deeper than simply propoganda for our enemies. It seems that our press here is not only infavor of helping our enemies with their PR problems, but also knowlingly and willfully engaged in the release of classified information. The WaPo released the stories regarding the rendition flights and secret CIA prisons. The New York Times completed its treasonous trifecta yesterday. They have not only blown the cover of the NSA Terrorist Surveillance Program and the SWIFT financial tracking program (The LA Times was in on that one), but they also released information regarding the classified National Intelligence Estimate report in their Sunday editions. Times managing editor Bill Keller spins these decisions as "in the public's interest."

I cannot concur with that opinion. The general public does not need to know every little detail about the operations and programs this nation uses to fight the bad guys. But the press seems to think it does. And the mainstream, dinosaur media cannot seem to distinguish friend from foe. To them, the terrorists have a side in this story, too, and someone has to tell it. While that may be true, I prefer to let their propogandists do that work, and I would rather like to see the general press do theirs or at least the job they were hired to do.

Report the news. Report the facts. Let the CONSUMER decide their own opinions. Dan Rather blatantly stated in front of a university audience (I do believe it was at Clumbia University) that journalists are no longer the presenters of fact, but rather they are the "purveyors of truth." That sounds nearly Goebbels-esque, and it reflects the general attitude of the press today. Journalists and newsmen no longer believe that their job is to simply report the news. They want to be the news, as well. They want to inject their personal beliefs into the stories. And when that is done, it is a great disservice to the world.



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