Exposing left-wing media bias: Iraq War

War is nefarious, there’s no doubt about it—it’s not disputed, dubious, ambiguous or obscure, and the scowling left-wing media has not only explicitly elucidated this position regarding the Iraq War, but they’ve taken it a few hundred steps further, vilifying the war effort and anyone who champions it.

And that, perhaps, is more nefarious.

As reported on Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto, by Congressman Steve King (R-IO), the annual civilian death rate per 100,000, a reliable scale in determining violence levels in a given region, is considerably higher in some United States cities than in war-torn Iraq, cementing the notion that the left-wing media is instilling an infectiously negligent Iraq War bias.

According to King, who cited icasualties.org as a source for his findings—a site that calculates Iraq-war death tolls—Washington DC, Detroit and Baltimore, just to name a few, incurring 45, 41.8 and 37.7 annual civilian deaths per 100,000, respectively, are more violent than Iraq, which garnered a 27.5 rating—but the media would have you believe that strolling the streets of Iraq is equivalent to strapping C-4 to your chest and setting a ten minute timer.

Despite laudable triumphs in the Iraq war—from the exile and capture of the odiously heinous Saddam Hussein, to the ratification of a democratic Constitution, to the swift appointment of key public officials to administer and oversee the new democratic government, to the recent assassination of the formerly most wanted man in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi—according to the most recent Pew poll, the President’s job approval on Iraq was a meek 35 percent in the month of June.

But how could this be, with such a prodigious list of triumphs, how could anyone question the war effort? It’s actually quite simple: the broad mass of America almost exclusively receives their Iraq War coverage from the media, and these predominately leftist outlets downplay American triumphs in Iraq while simultaneously amplifying America’s failures.

Case in point: Anderson Cooper. On June 8, one day after the surgically precise assassination of Zarqawi, an obvious victory in the war effort, an article was posted on Cooper’s CNN blog, with the headline reading, “Bin Laden might find relief in al-Zarqawi's death,” essentially mitigating the significance of the terror leader’s death, asserting that the death of Zarqawi will aid Bin Laden and thus inferring that Zarqawi’s demise will hamper and abate the war effort.

This position, although common in the leftist blogosphere, is a facetious attempt to undermine the war effort and turn an irrefutable victory into a sullen defeat.

But the belittling of American soldiers’ triumphs in Iraq doesn’t stop there. Shortly after US forces uncovered a stockpile of 500 WMD’s in Iraq, L. Brent Bozell III, a syndicated columnist, claimed the following in a column on MediaResearchCenter.org:

Here’s how the news of the WMD finds in Iraq was filtered by the so-called “mainstream media.” Fox News treated it as an important story. NBC reported on it with one “Nightly News” story, with pros and cons, noting that unnamed sources at the Pentagon “poured cold water” on the scoop’s importance. ABC and CBS did nothing. CNN mentioned it in passing, heavy on the skepticism. On MSNBC, Keith Olbermann howled at the moon, mocking the find as “weapons of minor discomfort” and suggesting Senator Santorum was like Sen. Joe McCarthy, holding up a “blank page” of supposed communists in the government.

To reiterate, Fox News, a notoriously conservative outlet, was the only major news network to treat the WMD story as “important.” The other major news networks, considered by many to be left-laced, either undercut the story’s significance, or simply ignored it.

The preceding statistics, poll results and cited instances affirm blatant misinformation and irresponsible journalism, with the media recklessly chiseling a pretentious sculpture reeking of blind partisanship and overtly conspicuous Republican and Iraq war revulsion.

What we have here is nothing more than liberal publications pandering to an overt leftist agenda, but the ramifications of these fraudulent yellow journalists will resonate piercingly in November, severely denting the GOP’s ability to preserve their Congressional dominance in the House and Senate.

The Republican Party must stand united against the disgraceful left-wing media and work tirelessly to mend the public eyesore fabricated by nefarious liberal demagogues.

The Iraq War, like all wars, may be nefarious—that will never be disputed—but at least it’s justified.

Posted by Alex Fitzsimmons at June 30, 2006 8:39 PM
Comments
Comment #163777

***Just a note: the statistics offered by Representitive King can be found by playing the video after clicking on the link provided.***

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at June 30, 2006 9:09 PM
Comment #163784

Do you have the testimony from yesterday about the WMD’s? I believe it was the Armed Services Committee —
Didn’t learn much from it because most of the information had to be disclosed later in the closed session.
Our nation spends 500 million dollars a year cleaning up the same types of chemical weapons, in nations like Russia?, that were found in Iraq because they are extremely dangerous.
Somehow the story came out that the ones found in Iraq were ‘outdated’ and no longer dangerous -even though they were the same type.

It’s too bad our nation is so slow in declassifying information such as what has actually been discovered in Iraq.

Posted by: dawn at June 30, 2006 9:47 PM
Comment #163801

In conservative circles, if the media dosen’t report the news the way you see it, they must be liberal.

Conservatives love to attack the liberal media as if the conservative media dosen’t exist, or if they exist, they are just better than the liberal media, or a counterbalance. All criticisms you have of the liberal media can be made against the conservative media. They distort, spin and have their own biases. And the liberal media is loosing influence. Most people do not read newspapers. Conservatives are dominating radio and the internet.

Fox News is probably engaging in consumer fraud, “Fair and Balanced”, “No Spin Zons” but a right wing propaganda machine for the purpose of promoting a conservative agenda. According to a University of Maryland study, People who listen or watch Fox news are generally less informed on political affairs than those that listen to PBS and NPR. No liberal media outfit comes close these shenanigans. There is a difference between bias and propaganda.

Where is the good news from Iraq? You do not hear much of it from any news outlet. And what is good news? A find of old WMD’s that don’t work and non-threatening? The Killing of Zarghari but no end in violence? The forming of a constitution and a governmnet, but a government that is in-effective, cannot provide security and services and a puppet of the US? Building up and training an Iraqi army and security force, but infiltrated by insurgents with tepid loyalities waiting to see who gets power? - It all depends on how you see it.

This attacking of anything liberal as bad and unAmerican (or hate America) is unfair, absurd, distorted and stiffles honest debate. My views are discredited solely becasue you label me a liberal. A convenient way to reject inconvenient truths….

Posted by: Stefano at June 30, 2006 11:39 PM
Comment #163805

Stefano:

I’m not pulling these statistics out of thin air. There is a public perception, formed by the (liberal) mainstream media, that Iraq is such an unstable, inhospitable place that rivals only Hell…when the stats provided by Congressman King prove that Iraq is less dangerous than some US cities.

And I’m not arguing that the conservative media is perfect, and I’m not arguing about anything other than Iraq. I’m merely presenting the case that the media has distorted the Iraq War, as evidenced by Mr. King’s findings.

In conservative circles, if the media dosen’t report the news the way you see it, they must be liberal.

This statement could not be more wrong. For me, I only want balanced reporting, not partisan reporting…both my cited examples (CNN and Bozell) strengthen the argument that liberal publications are downplaying our successes in Iraq while amplifying our failures…that constitutes partisan reporting and that’s the point I’m trying to elucidate.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at June 30, 2006 11:55 PM
Comment #163810

Alex-
You’ve got the civilian casualties dead wrong. you have only to look at that very site to see that Iraq Civilian and Force casualties are numbering in the Thousands per MONTH. New York, last year, only saw something over five hundred deaths, in a city roughly the size of Baghdad.

So you tell me: how is it that you can claim Iraq to be more peaceful than New York when more people die in a month than die in NYC in a year?

As for Chemical weapons, when they’re in the state that our people found them, you don’t want to drink cocktails mixed with the stuff, but as weapons capable of killing or maiming thousands at a throw, their days are over. It’s still dangerous to dispose of them, but the risk is to individuals nearby, not everybody exposed within hundreds of yards to so much as a drop.

Some have suggested that they could be chemically rehabilitated, and I suppose its possible, so long as you have a top notch chemical facility, and you survive opening the shell in the first place. Then a couple questions are raised. First, if you had a lab of sufficient sophistication to remake these chemical weapons, why not just make them fresh? You would have much fewer worries about impurities and the like.

But secondly, and most importantly, where they hell would they do it and not get noticed?

Open Democracy: Why couldn’t the Iraqis have restarted their programme?

Ron Manley: It’s important to be aware of what that would actually involve. The sarin plant at Al-Muthanna, for example, was five storeys high and about 50 metres by 50 metres in size. To make nerve agents in a facility requires massive air filtration with a ventilation system capable of shifting and treating something like two million cubic metres of air per hour, if you don’t want to kill off most of the workforce very quickly. This is something that could be easily monitored.

Open Democracy: They could build a small plant which would be less easy to detect.

Ron Manley: Well, yes, but then it wouldn’t be possible to make militarily significant quantities. You can make some in a fume cupboard if you got the capabilities, but then you’re talking about making grams. One shell holds roughly five kilograms.

If you want 10,000 shells you’re looking at a lot of material. A single al-Hussein warhead holds 300 litres of agent. You can make 300 litres of agent in a fume cupboard, but it would take a very long time indeed.

We’re talking about the real world logistics of actually starting up a plant, much less having the capability to make the stuff in the first place.

We went looking for this capability, and should have been able to find it if it was there. It was not. There was no Chemical or Biological Weapons program running at the time we attacked much less any nuclear program to create the smoking gun in the form of a mushroom cloud over one of our cities.

We can’t assess the threats we put the military pedal to the metal on in terms of what might happen five years from now.

If we are to effectively use our military might to defend America, we should pay attention to the threat that are truly on the edge of realization, and otherwise leave our military ready to face the unexpected missions and threats that might pop up despite our best efforts to predict the next problem.

Only we have folks who don’t want to face that this war was a mistake, a mistake that needed to have been acknowledged and put behind us long ago.

These weapons did not come out of nowhere and were not unaccounted for by previous searches whose reports have said we turned up nothing. We were not looking to face down the relics of Saddam’s chemical military capability of a couple decades ago, we looking to face down an operating weapons program that encompassed all three parts of the unholy trinity of unconventional weapons.

We didn’t find any such program at all! We found a few scientist sneaking around on Saddam’s orders, burying test tubes on the lawn. Where’s the freaking mushroom cloud over one of our cities supposed to come out of that? and don’t give me that crap about this stuff eventually developing out to that.

We entered this war in a pre-emptive strike, which means the gun was supposed to be to our head. Note: immediate threat. The gun is not supposed to be still ore, or a bunch of parts, or on the person’s wishlist for Christmas several years from now, to one day, possibly, if he’s pushed to it, hold to our head.

To put it much plainer, we were supposed to be in deep shit before the war started, with terrorists about to act as couriers for the use of Iraqi WMDs on America. Instead, we find out that had no chance in hell of happening, and now, only now are we in deep shit.

It’s time to let it go. The best you can do is to work for a good withdrawal. The time to assist this Administration in ass-covering is at an end.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 1, 2006 12:11 AM
Comment #163812
So you tell me: how is it that you can claim Iraq to be more peaceful than New York when more people die in a month than die in NYC in a year?

Stephen:

I didn’t assert that NY was less safe than Iraq…

As for Chemical weapons, when they’re in the state that our people found them, you don’t want to drink cocktails mixed with the stuff, but as weapons capable of killing or maiming thousands at a throw, their days are over. It’s still dangerous to dispose of them, but the risk is to individuals nearby, not everybody exposed within hundreds of yards to so much as a drop.

The potentcy of the weapons is irrelevant to this thread, quite frankly. What is important is that according to Bozell, the liberal-slanted news outlets didn’t even initially report the findings. Not even a one liner.

And the puropse of my post is not to debate the validity of the war effort, it is to assess the media’s coverage of the war effort in the face of statistics, polls and cited examples.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 12:20 AM
Comment #163813

As for your media critique, the problem is that nobody is free from bias, including the folks measuring the bias. If they are of sufficient ideological fervor, it will be nearly impossible to convince them that the media is not always biased against them.

But it’s no innocuous thing to do to yourself. To continually carve away sources and individuals considered too liberal is to eventually confine oneself to a set of sources whose error will be shared. Ultimately, you end up strangling yourself of any robust connection to the reality outside your own partisan spin.

But of course, it’s helping the Democrats that they at least know what day it is, and what at the end of the day is going on in the world. If you want to further convince people you folks are out of touch, that’s your call.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 1, 2006 12:21 AM
Comment #163816

Stephen:

I don’t see any out of touch comments, I only see real statistics, real polls, and real examples, analyzed, of course, in my opinion.

I’m not making accusations that aren’t being substantiated, in my opinion. I asserted that the media is distorting the war effort by providing stats showing that Iraq is not quite as dangerous as percieved, polls that are a result of this slanted reporting, and examples to support my assertion that the media is downplaying successes and amplifying failures.

And I’m not saying I don’t pay any attention to the liberal media, becasue I do. I’m simply trying to illuminate media partisanship regarding the war effort.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 12:28 AM
Comment #163818

Alex-
They did. But the age and impotency of the weapons made it a nonstory. We didn’t go to Iraq to stop Saddam from using inoperable Cold-War relics.

The validity of the war effort goes hand in hand with what can be termed the quality of the reporting. If there have been no WMD programs found, no WMDs younger than the Gulf War, and no weapons of real military use, then reporting that actively tries to hype finds like this would be irresponsible. You were told. It just wasn’t such a big deal that it made headline news.

As for King’s remarks, what other purpose would they have, but to render the violence in Iraq palateable, by making it seem like it was no worse than that of a major city here.

According to King, who cited icasualties.org as a source for his findings—a site that calculates Iraq-war death tolls—Washington DC, Detroit and Baltimore, just to name a few, incurring 45, 41.8 and 37.7 annual civilian deaths per 100,000, respectively, are more violent than Iraq, which garnered a 27.5 rating—but the media would have you believe that strolling the streets of Iraq is equivalent to strapping C-4 to your chest and setting a ten minute timer.

I think it was Rahdigly or Sicilian Eagle who tried this argument on me last time, and I did some research. My own city, Houston, had only 336 murders last year. New York, with four times the population managed something over 500. If Iraq stays on its course, there will be over 12,000 murders this year.

That’s a completely different scale of violence from American cities. Denying it won’t change it. You might rent people’s support with that approach, but in the end you only buy their contempt when they become better informed.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 1, 2006 12:34 AM
Comment #163820

Stephen:

You have to understand, the statistics offered by King are averages, and not totals. Iraq is inclined to have more civilian deaths than Houston, because it is larger than Houston.

Also, there is not a war going on in Houston, so a death is considered murder. A considerable number of deaths in Iraq are not a result of murder, but rather, of war cross-fire and other war-related deaths, all of which are not classified as murder.

So, perhaps a more apt way to compare the two would be to say that the number of murders in Iraq will be less than the total number of violent deaths, while the number of murders in Houston will be almost identical to the number of total violent deaths.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 12:42 AM
Comment #163821

Alex,
Iraq is justified? I see. Here is a chance for you to put it in writing for all to see. You say killing Zarqawi was an “irrefutable victory.” Killing him also killed an innocent 5 to 7 year old girl.

Please explain how killing a young girl with explosives in order to kill Zarqawi at the same time is an “irrefutable victory.”

Please explain why killing children is “justified.”

Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 12:43 AM
Comment #163822

Alex-
One can make an invalid argument from sound information. Your read on the weapons is invalid because of the nature of the evidence. These were not the kind of threat that would have validated the war. They merit the use of Biohazard suit, not an armed invasion. If you doubt me, you have only to reference the Kay and Duelfer Reports on these matters, as the 500 weapons are likely among the stuff the inspectors found- found and dismissed, judging by the conclusions of the report.

It is all to easy to illuminate things in a false light. The SWIFT program has been known about since December 2002, mentioned by the company’s report. The idea of going after Terrorist Finances has been set out from day one. The WMDs here are not the Weapons we risked our national reputation on finding, nor the threat our soldiers sacrificed to stop.

This constant appeal to paranoia only serves to entrench differences on the war, instead of encouraging bipartisan strategy and compromise.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 1, 2006 12:45 AM
Comment #163824

Phx8:

For the record, I do not condone the killing of innocent civilians, and I believe that the killing of civilians can never be justified. However, loss of life, both civilian and military, is horrible, but it happens in war (but that doesn’t justify it).

Is a horrible tragedy? Yes. But I assert that the death of this girl does not diminish the importance of Zarqawi’s death.

The death of the girl is unjustifiable, but we have to be able to recognize our malpractices and move forward.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 12:52 AM
Comment #163826
One can make an invalid argument from sound information. Your read on the weapons is invalid because of the nature of the evidence. These were not the kind of threat that would have validated the war. They merit the use of Biohazard suit, not an armed invasion.

I’m not asserting that these weapons are of utmost importance, but I think their mere existance warrants news coverage…and the liberal press, according to Bozell, denied this story even a shimmer of coverage when the story broke.

And that is wrong.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 12:57 AM
Comment #163830

Alex-
Averages? Never trust averages, especially when you’re trying to work out current conditions. The beginning of the occupation was not nearly as violent as our current state, so that’s going to weigh things down, bring the numbers lower.

But that doesn’t accurately reflect conditions in Iraq now. It dampens them.

As for Iraq’s size, I first must correct my mistake here: We aren’t talking about Iraq as a whole, but rather just baghdad. The story is here. scaling up to Baghad’s size, the deaths in Houston would still be ten times less, and New York, by almost direct comparison, is twice as peaceful as Houston.

Most of the murder, it says, are sectarian slayings.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 1, 2006 1:09 AM
Comment #163831

Alex-
Final post of the night:
No, they don’t warrant news coverage. To warrant that, they would have to change something. As they are, they are the expected relics of a war that was completed almost two decades ago. They can wake the rest of the nation when we find stuff whose presence means something other than “old munitions dump in Iran/Iraq war.”

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 1, 2006 1:12 AM
Comment #163832

Well informed listening to NPR? Gee Stephan, do you suppose that there is a reason that so many people have stopped reading the fish wraps? Ever wonder why FOX and talk radio have become as prolific as they are? Maybe a cabal started by Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh? I smell Karl Rove’s hand in this great conspiracy, or is that the sound of Ronald Reagans’ ghost that I hear? Did Newt slip something into our drink while we weren’t looking? Or, could it just be tne self assured condicension that drips from the voice of Dianne Reem when talking about conservative policy, the one sided hatefull broadsides launched by Helen Thomas at a press briefing, the outright fabrication of the truth by such media icons as Rather and Mapes along with the BBC and the LA Times, the NY Times self righteous bleating of the evils of America and the half blind way that they report the news that they see fit to print, etc., etc., etc.,? There are dependable liberal publications out there to read, such as the Economist. As an intelligent and well informed conservative, I appreciate an opposing view so long as it is intelectualy honest and reported while acknowledging that there is another viewpoint other than there own. Weighing all of these facts out fairly leads me to the obvious conclusion that Alex got it right and you got it left.

Posted by: scolex at July 1, 2006 1:12 AM
Comment #163834

Tabloid shock jocks like on fox news are popular with ignorant arrogant people all over the world. How many of us normal types tune in for a daily dose of moral outrage i wonder.

Posted by: Tom at July 1, 2006 1:52 AM
Comment #163835

Scolex

I believe that people are too busy or lazy to actually find out the news for themselves. It takes the avg person too much time to read the important speeches of the day. Fox is only filling a small niche, feeding pablum, gossip and tired conservative clichés to a group that prefers spoon feeding.

BTW Helen Thomas’ questions are considerably less hateful than the diatribes we hear against anyone who disagrees with GW et al. And You’ll get more info of ALL types from NPR and PBS than you’ll ever get from FOX and Rush. I usually disagree with the conservative op-ed writers for the Times, but even they give more useful info in 4-5 columns a week than all of conservative talk radio.

There are no evils of America, but there are plenty of people out there giving our country a black eye. I am a liberal and I love my country. But I will point the finger of blame at anyone who is destroying it.

Posted by: Loren at July 1, 2006 2:03 AM
Comment #163837

Alex

It would be informative if you could give some examples of champions of the war who have been vilified by the liberal media bias.

Perhaps the president’s approval rating didn’t go up after the whacking of Zarqawi was because, plain and simple, we weren’t impressed that it would make a difference. Any argument to the contrary would be, IMO, baseless speculation.

Posted by: Loren at July 1, 2006 2:10 AM
Comment #163840

Stephan, your last post says it all. You , your ilk and the “news media” will decide for the rest of us what is and isn’t news. Is that not how Pravda and The Party “reported the news”? It happened, ergo it is. It is up to the rest of us to decide what is news, not the news agencies. When did this prolific shift occur? As I am not a journalist I do not know what is being taught to them in college first hand, but I am smart enough to know that there are always two sides to every story. ow dare you presume what I need to be told! That doesn’t strike me as very liberal or proggresive. You talk of emporer Bush, but ten are unwilling or to blinded by your own partisan view to see the vast army of emporers rising up all around you. Bush makes policy, the media reports ALL of the news and we make our minds up based on that. That is how it works if you want a free press. To close, I’d bet the farm that if just one of these old, degraded, decrepit and unusable shells ended up on a US playground, most people would care to here about it and the media would sure be reporting it,albeit as another shinning example of this administrations’ failure to take them seriously. I would also like to think that ‘the constant appeal to paranoia applies to the left as well so that we can have a real bipartisan dicussion rather than the left’s traditional view of bipartisanship whichof\of course means that the republicans in the senate belly up in fear to the minority.

Posted by: scolex at July 1, 2006 2:35 AM
Comment #163841

Tom, you just dont get it.

Posted by: scolex at July 1, 2006 2:40 AM
Comment #163843

Loren, do not confuse media commontators with news journalists. All you get from commontators is widespread speculation, factual only on the basis of were the info came from. journalist are supposed to observe a happening and then be as dispationate as possible while striving to present two sides to each story. Simple! The Limbaughs of the world can and do feed pablum, and an observent listener recognizes this for what it is. But the Limbaoughs of the world do not call themselves reporters, they refer to temselves as pundits.Helen Thomas and much of nprconsider themselves the upper crust of journalism and reporting. This is obvious by the number of plaudits and rewards that they heap upon each other and in Thomas’ case, herself. These folks profess to being open minded and inquisitive, yet, can you ever listen to Helen Thomas and agree with that? Do you ever realize the vast majority of panels makeup on NPRnews shows? Now, in all honesty, cannot that be called unjournalistic behaviour? Where is the dispassionate attitude of these self proclaimed and rewarded journalists?

Posted by: scolex at July 1, 2006 2:58 AM
Comment #163844

My friend’s parrot screams and spins on his perch when someone says the word terrorist, when really all he wants is a peanut.

Posted by: Tom at July 1, 2006 3:02 AM
Comment #163850

Alex:

Good job of defending your point, and especially for staying on topic when others moved off it.

Your point has nothing to do with whether Iraq is justified or not, whether a young girl’s death is acceptable or not, or how dangerous degraded WMD’s are. Your point was simply about the media.

I find it interesting that someone (in this case, Stefano) always brings up Fox News in their argument about media bias. They attempt to show that the media is not biased by showing how biased Fox News is. In trying to refute the point, they actually make the point.

If you look at the media portrayal of similar types of situations, you begin to see the bias.

For example, military men raped young women, withheld promised aid unless they got sex, created an Internet pedophila ring, fathered children with underage girls, and molested young boys. This happened not in one instance, but multiple instances in numerous areas.

Another group of people forced prisoners to masturbate, or positioned them in sexually explicit positions. They poured cold water on naked detainees, beat detainees with a broom handle and a chair, threatened male detainees with rape and used military working dogs to frighten and intimidate detainees with threats of attack.

Both groups deserve derision and punishment. But there are differences in scope—in the first, actual rapes occurred, while in the second, none did. Oh, and the first was United Nation’s peacekeeping troops, while the second was American troops.

One needs only look at the number of media stories on Abu Ghraib as compared to the number of media stories on UN sexual misconduct and rape to see a bias. Both stories are somewhat comparable, yet the UN story has played out on the back pages, if presented at all, while Abu Ghraib played from the headlines.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at July 1, 2006 6:18 AM
Comment #163855
As reported on Fox News’ Your World with Neil Cavuto, by Congressman Steve King (R-IO), the annual civilian death rate per 100,000, a reliable scale in determining violence levels in a given region, is considerably higher in some United States cities than in war-torn Iraq, cementing the notion that the left-wing media is instilling an infectiously negligent Iraq War bias.

This compares apples to oranges. Taking only the most violent parts of America to compare with all of Iraq, both cities and countryside. It’s a completely unfair comparison that shows much more about your bias than about the media’s bias.

1) The King report uses 2002 data for Washington, D.C., finding a violent casualty rate of 45.9 deaths per 100,000 people. That number is badly outdated. Using the most recent 2004 data, the violent casualty rate in D.C. is 35.8 deaths per 100,000. There were 198 homicides total in D.C. for the entire year.

2) The Brookings Institute estimates an annualized murder rate of 95 per 100,000 Iraqis in Bagdad. Brookings notes this number may be “too low since many murder victims are never taken to the morgue, but buried quickly and privately and therefore never recorded in official tallies.”

3) Lastly, the King report is trying to conflate the data for one urban area in the U.S. with the entire country of Iraq. As OpinionJournal writes, “The comparison with U.S. cities poses a problem of scale. Just as some municipalities here have high concentrations of crime, Baghdad and some other Iraqi cities have high concentrations of military, guerrilla and terrorist activity. A comparison of Baghdad with Los Angeles or a similarly sprawling U.S. city would be more enlightening than a comparison of Iraq as a whole with cities of well under a million people.”

More on this at Sadly No

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 1, 2006 9:08 AM
Comment #163858

“My problem with Dan [Rather] was always that you knew where he stood politically. And the fact that he stood on my side didn’t have anything to do with it. I thought he was a bad representative of the liberal side because he was so obvious with his opinions. There were just little words he used when he was on the air that made it apparent to everyone that he was a liberal Democrat.” —CBS’s Andy Rooney, saying his own good-bye

Posted by: Status Whoa at July 1, 2006 9:19 AM
Comment #163859

The left is following their template, perfectly. Just take a stroll down memory lane since the 60’s, if you will. They have been on the wrong side of history consistently. Pol Pot, Ho Chi Minh, NVA, Khmer Rouge, USSR, Cuba, Sandanistas, and virtually anyone else that has opposed the U.S. always is joined by the left. Now Saddam. Weird, that….

Posted by: nikkolai at July 1, 2006 9:23 AM
Comment #163861
This compares apples to oranges. Taking only the most violent parts of America to compare with all of Iraq, both cities and countryside. It’s a completely unfair comparison that shows much more about your bias than about the media’s bias.

Lawnboy:

Nowhere in my post did I claim that Iraq is safer than the US, as a whole. And in fact, there are only a handful of cities that have a higher violent deaths per 100k than Iraq. I just think it’s profounding that even one city has a higher violence rate than Iraq.

Also, I am not trying to prove that Iraq isn’t a dangerous place, because it is. I am merely trying to prove that it is not quite as dangerous as the media would like you to believe.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 9:52 AM
Comment #163865


Thirty five percent of the people are swollowing the right wing propaganda on the war hook line and sinker. Sixty five percent have heard enough. This is because the liberal biased media won’t let the truth be heard and not because the right wing propagandists have told lie after lie about the progress that has been made in the war. A war which I might add was declared over three years ago (MISSION ACOMPLISHED) by those very same propagandists. At the current rate of progress, the electrical grid for Bagdad should be fully restored sometime in March 2025 with the entire nation of Iraq fully restored by 2050.

A improvised explosive device made from Iraqi artilary shells was detonated at a used car dealership in downtown Detroit today killing 65 people. The Brotherhood of Jihadist for the Liberation of Used Cars has claimed responsibility for this and three other attacks on used car dealerships that have taken place in Detroit this week.

When the republican propagandists continue to feed the people a line of B.S. such as comparing the violence in Bagdad with the violence in American cities, one would assume that maintaining control of the 35% who are die hard believers could be in jeopardy.

Your line of reasoning suggests that you believe that the American People (65%of them) are to stupid to realize that they are being duped by the liberal media. In actuality, they are clever enough to realize that they have been fed a pack of lies by the administration and their mouthpieces. The American people saw the news about the WMD’s and dismissed it for what it was, a political propaganda stunt.

Posted by: jlw at July 1, 2006 10:17 AM
Comment #163866
Nowhere in my post did I claim that Iraq is safer than the US, as a whole.

So you admit your comparison was apples to oranges, and thus useless.

Good to know.

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 1, 2006 10:21 AM
Comment #163868

Lawnboy:

You just love to infer, don’t you…”since he said this, it must mean that, and there’s no way around it.”

Actually, I don’t believe the comparison is apples to oranges because, as afore mentioned, the stat is not a total, but rather, a rate compared to an unvarying number.

If I were to compare the actual number of violent deaths as oppose to the unvarying rate, that would be apples and oranges.

The American people saw the news about the WMD’s and dismissed it for what it was, a political propaganda stunt.

jlw:

Actually, as cited in my article, if the American people were watching ABC or CBS, they wouldn’t have seen the news. And if they were watching MSNBC, they would have been tortured by one of Olbermann’s classic compare-conservatives-to-every-big-bad-person-who-ever-existed speeches.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 10:44 AM
Comment #163871

Alex, are you serious or is this post in jest? I do not doubt your “facts” what I question is the temerity you have in posting them. Surely you cannot be serious!

Have the war supporters now, finally, in desperation called attention to Iraqi civilian casualties? We who have opposed the war have been attempting to get the liberal media to do that for years to no avail. Check out Iraqi Body count for the latest figures of estimated civilian dead in Iraq. Yes, we only have estimates; our military does not stoop to count civilian dead. They are called “collateral damage” or haven’t you heard?

I am ashamed to be an American when the murder rate in our cities is comparable to that in Iraq. Something is wrong in America if your figures are accurate; all the more reason to get out of Iraq and tend to business at home. Your post has made the most convincing argument for withdrawal I have read. Good work.

Finally, please do not trot out the WMD argument again. There were none, are none and will be none. Those old shells were so degraded (according to the President’s own weapons expert) as to not qualify as WMD.

Peace, cml

Posted by: cml at July 1, 2006 10:50 AM
Comment #163872
Actually, I don’t believe the comparison is apples to oranges because, as afore mentioned, the stat is not a total, but rather, a rate compared to an unvarying number.

It doesn’t matter that it’s a rate stat; that wasn’t my complaint. The reason it’s apples to oranges is that you’re comparing a national murder rate to a city murder rate.

I am merely trying to prove that it is not quite as dangerous as the media would like you to believe.

And you failed at that.

The numbers we have here are that the murder rate (yes, rate) in Baghdad is almost 3 times the murder rate in DC. The U.S. national murder rate is 5.5/100,000 and the Iraqi rate is 5 times that.

That’s not safe.

When we compare apples (national rate) to apples and oranges (city rate) to oranges, you and Steve King are shown to be playing games with lies, damned lies, and statistics.

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 1, 2006 11:00 AM
Comment #163879

That’s what the terrorists in Iraq want us to think! It is they who are responsible for the deaths of Iraqi citizens. They hide in neighborhoods and look like civilians. Our marines have no time to debate on whether the target is a civilian or terrorist. The thing for the Iraqi civilians to do is not be suspicious.

Posted by: stubborn conservative at July 1, 2006 11:54 AM
Comment #163880

Iraq is justified? I see. Here is a chance for you to put it in writing for all to see. You say killing Zarqawi was an “irrefutable victory.” Killing him also killed an innocent 5 to 7 year old girl.

“Please explain how killing a young girl with explosives in order to kill Zarqawi at the same time is an “irrefutable victory.”

Please explain why killing children is “justified.” “

Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 12:43 AM

Please explain why it is not an issue that Zarqawi was hiding amongst innocent children?
HE is the one that put the little girl at risk.
It’s a terrible thing she died BUT the U.S. forces did not put Zarqawi in her house.
This makes the enemy we are fighting THAT MUCH worse!! The fact that they hide with innocent children and their families.
Did her parents invite him in OR did he force his way into their house?
If the U.S. let him go what would have been said about that?


Posted by: bug at July 1, 2006 11:56 AM
Comment #163887

Alex,

“And if they were watching MSNBC, they would have been tortured by one of Olbermann’s classic compare-conservatives-to-every-big-bad-person-who-ever-existed speeches.”

Attitude aside, Olbermann does get it right most of the time, and isn’t afraid to retract a comment when necessary.

America seems to love a train wreck.
Why else would Jerry Springer be popular?
If Natalee Holloway hadn’t been a blonde teen from Alabama the news of her disappearance wouldn’t have been news outside of Aruba, and we wouldn’t have been subjected to updates on every news station, every nanosecond, for months.
With these examples in mind, all of the media should get a failing grade for reporting in the last few decades.

Hannity and O’Reilly are pretend reporters and they both still get it wrong 50% of the time.
How could they help it when the constantly substitute opinion for fact?

I am almost ashamed to say that, at one time, I did listen to Limbaugh regularly, however, at the time he actually was entertaining.
On the other hand, I have heard him take a rumor and report it as a rumor, and 15 minutes later report it as a fact, and continue to repeat it as fact, over and over, even though, in reality, the story never actually made it past the rumor phase.

If you really want to bitch about the coverage of the “good” news out of Iraq, why isn’t the White house trumpeting all of the “good” things that are happening?
Surely Fox News would be all over that like a cheap suit, even if no one else was.

Could it be that there just isn’t that much “good” news to report?

Posted by: Rocky at July 1, 2006 12:10 PM
Comment #163893

Scolex-
You’re only saying people have stopped paying attention. Were that the case though, you folks wouldn’t have to try so hard to convince people that you’re right.

I hear constant complaining about the media from your side, and I just find it the worst kind of whining. The best answer to critics is the prove them wrong by your success. So far, the GOP has failed to prove the critics wrong. They try and make it look that way, offering up bait for desperate supporters to bite at, but ultimately they’re more interested in getting the story straight rather than the job done right.

On your second post let me respond: Do I believe me and “my ilk” should decide what is and isn’t news? No. I have no desire to repeat the errors of FOXNews and “their ilk” It shouldn’t be politics that determines what’s news but what makes for dependable, meaningful information for the people. I subscribe to simple journalistic standards, standards that ensure dependable sources, dependable information. I don’t want to be told what to think. I don’t want political ass-kissing from my news. I can’t even watch Bill Moyer’s NOW on PBS. I feel smart enough to decide what my opinion will be on my own. I just need good information.

Not all information is good, and many give misleading information purposefully or by accident. If you just print everything, you’re doing nobody any favors. Critical analysis on the facts is a must, however the chips fall.

It would be bad for one of those shells to show up on a playground. First, though, somebody would have to retrieve one of these things, transport a corroded weapon that might leak outright, and extract the substance that are as likely to kill them as anybody else. Trying to use shells like this as terrorist weapons would be an exercise in Darwinian principles. Those stupid enough to try would generally kill themselves off. And getting these old rusting leaky things to America and actually using them well? Good heavens. If that is your vision of their use, The likeliness of your morbid fantasy is pretty low.

You folks are too paranoid, too steeped in your own pride. All Helen Thomas and many in the press have done in my experience is ask the tough questions. You folks don’t like that, but the truth is that the Republicans have to be able to legitimately defend their policies. If they can’t, why should America go along with them? This is a test that they must pass, if they wish to have legitimacy.

Your pundits, on the other hand, while claiming the privileges of commentators, nonetheless claim superiority in matters of truth over all those liberal reporters. Unburdened by the requirements of fact-checking and attribution, they freely criticize the reliability of those who answer the call to higher standards of reporting. It’s positively annowying to me that you folks moan about the MSM having an underlying liberal bias when your media unapologetically advocates. The notion that you’re simply being more honest about your bias both neglects the often unproven nature of your accusations, and the principles of reporting that should be applied across the board, instead of advocacy, which puts the reporters into a conflict of interest.

You want affirmation of your principles. I want to know what’s going on so I can figure out for myself what is wise.

Joe-
You cannot judge the quality of news without judging it’s consistency with the subject. If the subject works along the lines reported, then it is reality, and not the reporters who have the bias against your party.

I think the main reason the UN abuses were not so well-publicized is quite simply most Americans do not care about the goings on of the UN and most other international events. Also, we expect better of ourselves. We’re supposed to be the good guys. That soldiers serving on behalf of the UN commit these offenses is not to close to us. That our own people do this is.

It’s not liberal bias, it’s a bias towards paying more attention towards our own people and our own affairs.

Alex-
I think you’re working off of 2003 statistics there. Correct me if I’m wrong. If so, you’re dealing with Iraq before the escalation, in which case your assumption is wrong.

Look, you won’t make things better by continually downplaying the problems. Solve the problems, and you don’t have to beat the media over the head with spin to be popular and well-liked (or to attempt to be popular and well-liked).

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 1, 2006 12:34 PM
Comment #163897

Comparing death statistics from Iraq - a country - with american cities is comparing apples and oranges - compare the stats for Bagdad or any of the cities in the Suni triangle with any american city or probably any city in the world and see what you get - huge areas of Iraq - those under kurdish & shia rule are relatively safe and therefore SERIOUSLY SKEW THE NATIONAL AVERAGE - and so Mr Fitz is guilty of the same spin he accuses any media that does not spin in his direction of - the right is delusional on the war - and so is its press

- example - the NY Post (the NY print edition of Fox News) placed the supreme court decision regarding the tribunals on PAGE 6!! with a picture and extensive quotes from Thomas’s dissenting opinion (the preponderence of the quotes) - the front page carried sleaze about a manhattan brothel - i assume deemed by the right wing editors to be more important to the country and the US city that has to date suffered most directly from these terrorists - where do you suppose the story would have been if the court had decided otherwise - and do you suppose there would be any quotes from a dissenting opinion

the inaccuracies in reporting from Bagdad - from any viewpoint right or left - have more to do with reporters inability to leave the safe zone and get into the areas where each day more die - its hard to blame reporters - more have died in covering Iraq than any other war

Posted by: Terlen at July 1, 2006 12:43 PM
Comment #163899

“All Helen Thomas and many in the press have done in my experience is ask the tough questions.”

Helen Thomas does not ask tough questions.
Her so-called questions are accusations that the person has to refute.

The press and our political parties are both guilty of this practice.
Throwing out an accusation that makes all the news clips and causing someone to prove themselves innocent instead of the other way around.
The ‘what if’ scenarios fly off people’s tongues continuously also.
The 24 hour news cycle has given us things like the Natalie story, the runaway bride and the endless stories of OJ and Michael Jackson.
They do not have actual news to report so they make things up to hear themselves talk.
Wolf is very good at it. Chris Matthews does a fine job too and let’s not forget Anderson…
It is not just the likes of Hannity, O’Reilly, and Lumbaugh though people don’t seem to mind when their own side uses this practice.

I don’t remember the last time someone said we’ll move on to a NEW story happening in the world because we ran out of facts on this one.
On any given day their are at most 6 new stories(in the WHOLE world) and ALL the stations cover the same ones endlessly.
It’s all pathetic.

Posted by: dawn at July 1, 2006 12:48 PM
Comment #163900

The liberal press is another fart in a hail storm by the conservative right wing movement. The Washington Post with Broder and other conservative right wing supporters have been behind George W. Bush and this administration since the so called War against Terrerism started. The reason I used ‘so called’ is because the larger portion of the war effort has been against Iraq not Afganistan which is where the Al Quada, i.e., the terrorists, was located.
We launched a pre emptive strike that was supported by all of the administration, nearly all the congress and the media. They accused anyone who protested against the war in Iraq of being treasonous and against the military soldiers and marines in the midst of combat. That’s the way it was and that’s the way it is right now.

Posted by: john at July 1, 2006 12:51 PM
Comment #163901

Joe,
This article is a rather sick example of cheerleading for war. It attempts to blame the unpopularity of the war on the messengers, and throws out little fist-pumping phrases of joy over the death of a terrorist, while ignoring the simultaneous deaths of innocents.

So I am on point, I quote a specific phrase from this bizarre article, and I am pretty sure it gives most people at least a moment of reflection when rejoicing over killing people.

The comparison of violence in US cities with urban warfare in Iraq in attempt to make the car bombings and tortures & executions in Bagdhad is despicable.

Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 12:55 PM
Comment #163906

CBS, NBS, ABS — they’re all BS. It is, and has been, clear for as long as I can remember that they are heavily liberal. They CAUSE news more than they report it. Talk about agenda driven!

Posted by: Don at July 1, 2006 1:11 PM
Comment #163907

I think the Republican argument is that every News report of a crime in NY City should be preceeded by the following the statement: “Today in NY City 8 million residents were not arrested and as far as anyone can tell, did not commit a crime in our city today. Celebrate law and order. On the East side this morning a man was arrested for the brutal rape and murder…”

Same for airplane crashes, boating accidents, auto accidents, etc. All should be proceeded by how many persons didn’t make the news today before reporting the unusual. Afterall, the point is to diminish the importance of death and maiming in Iraq, and the breakdown of humanity.

What’s 100,000 deaths and a quarter million injuries when millions survived and are doing relatively well. This was Adolph Hitler’s argument regarding the Jews. So, 6 million died, look at how many Germans lived and survived. That’s what’s important. Forget about the Jews.

The media focuses too much on the negative and refuses to celebrate the positive. This is the Republican criticism of the MSM. Put in historical perspective like this, one can see why. They own what is happening in Iraq, good and bad, so of course like Hitler, they want accentuate the positive and minimize the negative. There are elections coming afterall.

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 1, 2006 1:13 PM
Comment #163908

Oh, David, why’d you have to bring Godwin’s Law into this?

:)

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 1, 2006 1:16 PM
Comment #163914

Bug,
YOu make a good point, and it is important to remember that Zarqawi bears responsibility, for sure. And if I were the pilot, and I had to make the decision to fire missile into that house, I probably would, but I would never, ever go around talking about an “irrefutable victory.”

If you had a 7 year old daughter, would you sacrifice her in order to kill Zarqawi?

It will be a cold day in hell before I cheer for wars of choice.

Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 1:42 PM
Comment #163915
Helen Thomas does not ask tough questions. Her so-called questions are accusations that the person has to refute.

All I’ve heard so far is assertions. Give me an example. I’ve heard her ask the questions I wished someone would ask. What is wrong with that?

Posted by: Loren at July 1, 2006 1:44 PM
Comment #163917

Alex

I’m still waiting for the examples of conservatives who disagree with the mainstream media being vilified.

Posted by: Loren at July 1, 2006 1:49 PM
Comment #163926

“If you had a 7 year old daughter, would you sacrifice her in order to kill Zarqawi?”

NO! But I sure as HELL wouldn’t let him stay in my house WITH my seven year old daughter knowing the rath of the U.S. military may come down on my roof at any moment.
That was THEIR choice.
If those people are willing to sacrifice their OWN children just what do you expect us to do about it?
Let the bad guys go because they are hiding with families?
They do it because they figure they are safer that way.
They have found out different.

Posted by: bug at July 1, 2006 2:20 PM
Comment #163933

Bug is right

I would not have a murderer like that in my house with my daughter. You don’t want those kinds of guys around kids in any case.

I would also point out that I would not want my son to blow himself up to kill people in a marketplace or drive a truck bomb, or run a jet full of people into an office building, yet many people seem to think this is okay. Those who believe this obviously have less respect for the lives of their kids than I have for mine, so I cannot put myself in their shoes (and I would feel dirty if I tried.)

Posted by: Jack at July 1, 2006 2:41 PM
Comment #163940
This article is a rather sick example of cheerleading for war. It attempts to blame the unpopularity of the war on the messengers, and throws out little fist-pumping phrases of joy over the death of a terrorist, while ignoring the simultaneous deaths of innocents.


Phx8:

You see, I put forward a plausible argument based on statistics, polls and facts, and you decide to spin it around to make it sound like I don’t care about innocent people, even after I cooperated with your little “on the record” nonsense.

The fact of the matter is that most of what you have posted has been painfully off topic, and the preceding quote only illumintes that.

The comparison of violence in US cities with urban warfare in Iraq in attempt to make the car bombings and tortures & executions in Bagdhad is despicable.

I don’t know how many times I’m going to have to say this before you fully grasp the concept, but I am not saying, and have never said, that Iraq is a safe place to live. In fact, it is quite dangerous, and I would much rather live here in northern New Jersey. However, and this is the last time I’ll say this, there is a public image, created by the media, that Iraq is more dangerous than it actually is, and my statistics, although they have been poked at, illustrate that point.

Your obviosuly more interested in chastising me than in having a rational debate, so you resort to tactless, but more importantly, unsubstantiated rhetoric like “despicable” and “sick”.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 3:02 PM
Comment #163944
there is a public image, created by the media, that Iraq is more dangerous than it actually is, and my statistics, although they have been poked at, illustrate that point.

When the real chance of being murdered in Iraq is 5 times the chance of being murdered in the U.S., and the chance of being murdered in Baghdad is 3 times the chance of being murdered in Washington D.C., I wonder what you think the public image of the dangerousness of Iraq is. The reality there is really bad.

You repeated Rep. King’s irresponsible and invalid comparisons to tell a lie with numbers. To claim that you illustrated that Iraq isn’t as bad as we think, you need to show how bad we think it is (which you haven’t done) and that it’s not really that bad (which didn’t happen despite your attempted misrepresentations - it’s really that bad).

You see, I put forward a plausible argument based on statistics, polls and facts,

When you make your argument based on invalid statistical comparisons, you don’t get the credit for plausibility.

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 1, 2006 3:13 PM
Comment #163947

“that Iraq is more dangerous than it actually is, and my statistics, although they have been poked at, illustrate that point.”

this is illustrative of spin at its best - your statistics haven’t been poked at - they have been destroyed - vast areas of the country have always been relatively calm - certain areas are among the most violent on earth - to compare National stats for Iraq to city stats here is either intentioally misleading or ignorant - when the comparison is made correctly city to city your point falls apart - although i must admit that the point is so flimsy that there was not much holding it together other than the pompousness of its presentation

Posted by: Terlen at July 1, 2006 3:18 PM
Comment #163951
To claim that you illustrated that Iraq isn’t as bad as we think, you need to show how bad we think it is (which you haven’t done)

Lawnboy:

Hey, you must have missed the poll results included in my article that show Bush’s approval on Iraq is around 30%…or maybe you just didn’t read the article to begin with.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 3:23 PM
Comment #163952

Alex,

Bush’s poll results are irrelevent to the claim that the violence in Iraq isn’t as bad as we think it is.

While the situation in Iraq hasn’t helped his polls, one cannot say that his low approval is directly connected to public perception of the violence in Iraq. There are many, many reasons that Americans disapprove of Bush.

If you have relevent numbers, show them. Introducing yet another apples to oranges comparison doesn’t help your argument.

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 1, 2006 3:33 PM
Comment #163953

You can’t correlate GW’s approval rating with death rates. There are many other reasons why GW’s Iraqi policy is unsupported.

Posted by: Loren at July 1, 2006 3:35 PM
Comment #163954

While the situation in Iraq hasn’t helped his polls, one cannot say that his low approval is directly connected to public perception of the violence in Iraq. There are many, many reasons that Americans disapprove of Bush.

Lawnboy:

The polls show his specific Iraq War approval, not just in general. So, the low Iraq polls indicate that Americans think the war is going badly.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 1, 2006 3:38 PM
Comment #163957

Alex,

Public approval rates of the President for the War are different than public impressions of the violence in Iraq. They are related, but they are not the same.

Your spin doesn’t change this basic fact.

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 1, 2006 3:47 PM
Comment #163966

And Alex, to answer your earlier question, I did read your article. I’m not sure what correlation you think there is between understanding statistics and reading your post.

The preceding statistics, poll results and cited instances affirm blatant misinformation and irresponsible journalism,

You were right, but sadly not in the way you intended.

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 1, 2006 4:08 PM
Comment #163967

Alex,
Oh, no. You are not getting away with that. You wrote:

“… After the surgically precise assassination of Zarqawi, an obvious victory in the war effort, an article was posted on Cooper’s CNN blog, with the headline reading, “Bin Laden might find relief in al-Zarqawi’s death,” essentially mitigating the significance of the terror leader’s death, asserting that the death of Zarqawi will aid Bin Laden and thus inferring that Zarqawi’s demise will hamper and abate the war effort.

This position, although common in the leftist blogosphere, is a facetious attempt to undermine the war effort and turn an irrefutable victory into a sullen defeat.”

Your words, buddy. The “surgically precise assassination” you so breathlessly describe might have looked that way in the media. All we saw were STV films of explosions in a house far away. No sound. No blood. The media showed pictures of Zaraqwis corpse. It did not show pictures of the other people who died.

No where did any MSM show pictures of a dead little girl. There were also four other people in the house, and their picture never appeared either. Among the others in the house, one certainly was culpable, and we will never know about the other three people. The little girl who died in your surgically precise” killing- do you know her name?

The fact is, the media fully cooperated in creating a spin, one consistent with the phrase you so embassingly used; killing Zarqawi was an “irrefutable victory.”

And if anyone cares, articles appeared literally the day before speculating that bin Laden and the Sunni insurgents were on the outs with Zarqawi. This is hardly surprising, since Al Qaida never advocated Sunnis killing Shia civilians, while Al Qaida in Iraq strongly advocated it.

“… There is a public image, created by the media, that Iraq is more dangerous than it actually is.”

When the media starts publishing trophy photos I might believe you. But what we are presented is a carefully sanitized version of the war, with the Zarqawi killing being a perfect example. Killing insurgents often involves killing civilians. Neither wear uniforms, and once they are shot, all dead Iraqis are insurgents.

The Prime Minister of Iraq decries the dozens of executions occurring daily in Iraq. That is right. Dozens of people hogtied, tortured, punctured with power drills in the knees and face and eyes, then shot. When the MSM starts showing pictures every day, then we can start talking about accurate coverage.

Until then, cheerleading, or pretending to recognize the war is “nefarious” but nevertheless not as bad as the press make it out to be, is deceptive. Worse. A lie. And you know it.


Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 4:12 PM
Comment #163968

Alex -You want balanced reporting, so do I. But my point is balanced reporting is in the eyes of the beholder. No on can be fully objective no matter how sincere they try. The facts to report and how they are reported are subjective.

It also depends on how you see things. As far as you citing numbers that imply Iraq is no more violent than a major US city is lying with facts. This in my eyes is not balanced reporting. It is spinning to make a bad situation look good. It us to make us feel better so we can still feel good about ourseleves. It is delusional and not newsworthy.

Iraq today is a more violent place than under Saddam. In Baghdad, It is not safe to walk the streets, some areas of the country are under control of insurgensts. The US killed 4,000 - 7,000 Iraqi’s in Faluja, and it is still not stable.

Under Saddam, there was no insurgency, Shites and Sunni’s were not at each other’s throats, But to you,all of this is reporting bad news because the number of deaths on average is the same as a US city.

Iraqi hospitals and morque cannot handle influx of wounded and dead. Regardless of the average of deaths, more Iraqi’s are dying becasue of US occupation. But that is OK becasue the average death number is acceptable.

This is Bush Logic. He said 30,000 Iraqi’s have died in this war, but it is not as bad as the hundred’s of thousands Saddam killed. As if this forgives the 30,000 that never would have died if didn’t go in.

Posted by: Stefano at July 1, 2006 4:39 PM
Comment #163969

Rock performers, like Neil Young absorb the media bias like sponges.

After he put out the song, “Impeach the President” I took issue with him in a virtual battle of the internet hits competition (and it looks like I may have won that little mp3 war):
http://www.morethings.com/music/neil_young-drblt-let’s_impeach_the_president.htm

Posted by: Bruce at July 1, 2006 4:57 PM
Comment #163988

Just who are the liberal main stream media .Is it talk raido fox News Pat Bucanan or the Washington Post is it the Wall Street Journal. Could it be The three major net works who only reportb the news not ops. So who are the main street liberal bias media. Why the calling for the heds of those at the NYT and not the WSJ or LAT? Earl aTR republican

Posted by: Earl T R. Republican at July 1, 2006 6:06 PM
Comment #163992
We didn’t go to Iraq to stop Saddam from using inoperable Cold-War relics.

Nope, we went to Iraq to remove the regieme that was blocking UN efforst to find out if they did or didn’t have WMD that was listed in their inventory after the 1991 war. We didn’t know and they were preventing us from finding out.

Granted, the administration did a horrible job by saying we know that they do have them and they are here “XXX”. That was assinine. But even Blix couldn’t say for sure that they didn’t have them and he was the one on the ground (the 3rd group) who was charged in finding this out after 12 years.

It fact is that most americans at the time were tired of being treated like this by foreign countries just to have them attack us like they did on 9/11 and were tired of ‘waiting around’ for us to be confident that Iraq complied with the resolutions they were suppose to have complied with within 90 days of the 1991 war.

Since the adminstration effectively screwed up not just the selling of the war to the American people but also it’s execution, those people got complacant and rightly so are demanding something happen soon, either we win and leave or we admit defeat and leave. This is called ‘war weariness’ and this administration is oblivious to it.

But that doesn’t make the reasons we went into Iraq different, it’s the same revionist history as saying that Clinton was impeached for a blowjob. He was impeached for lying under oath in a sexual harassment suit AGAINST HIM in an attempt to bypass a law signed BY HIM.

Sounds bits and rearranging the facts in a convient truthful way is a failing of both parties (and the media) that will most likely win out in the end. It’s just a shame.

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 1, 2006 6:39 PM
Comment #163998

Rhinehold,
That is a strange version of why we went into Iraq. The UN inspectors were on the ground, investigating, and they found nothing. The Iraqis were “blocking” and “preventing” the UN Inspectors from finding… well… nothing. So we ordered the inspectors out of Iraq, and invaded.
We ignored the wishes of the inspectors to stay, and ignored the need for a second UN resolution authorizing invasion.

That does not sound like a very good reason to invade a country.

Remember the Powell Doctrine? Despite huge opposition abroad to the invasion, and despite huge protests here at home, Bush ordered the invasion anyway.

The exit strategy, another part of the Powell Doctrine, seems… vague. At best.

Let us face it. We went in for oil. We timed the run-up to influence elections.

At least your reason for invading is honest enough to admit invading Iraq had nothing to do with the best interest of the Iraqis.

The US has lost three wars: Vietnam, Somalia, and now Iraq. Afghanistan remains up in the air. In each loss, the US faced Fourth Generation Warfare.

(We just lost Somalia- it took 14 years- but no one is looking. A failed state has been taken over by the fundamentalist Islamic Courts Union, led by a former compatriot of none other than Osama bin Laden. Where is the media on that one, Alex?).

In the future, we need to keep the Powell Docrine in mind. It is a good one. We need to play to our strengths, ensure conflicts take the form of Third Generation Warfare, and if we face 4GW, be prepared to wage total war, or else not wage war at all.

If it is important enough to go to war, it must be as a last resort, and then it must be overwhelming force, with a specific goal, an exit strategy, and consensual support.

Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 7:08 PM
Comment #164023

This report from Amir Tahrei, a man educated in Iran and who spent the better part of his life living and reporting in the middle east is eye-opening. Read his commentary and compare it to MSM commentary.

Posted by: JR at July 1, 2006 9:06 PM
Comment #164028

JR,
Nice source. That is the person who wrote the false story about Iranians being forced to wear badges identifying their religions. Thanks for spreading the word of a proven liar, a liar revealed and pilloried across the world just recently. Really nice.

By the way, that source of disinformation belongs to the Benador Group, source of many other lies about Iraq.

Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 9:28 PM
Comment #164030

phx8
War for oil
You forgot “Bush lied - kids died” Aren’t you going to remind us that he knew about 9/11 beforehand? He shirked his duties in the Air Guard you know! He hates african americans, that’s why he ordered the levy to be blown up in New Orleans. Oh yeah, he’s a stupid cowboy who only got into Yale because of his Daddy. He’s a Fascist, he’s like Hitler and he’s the biggest threat to world peace today, not Islamofascist murderers. Did I miss any of your usual tinfoil hat wearing anti-Bush rhetoric? Please, don’t write any in, I’ll go through the archives if I’m feeling down and need a good belly laugh. By the way, when was the last time you bought a copy of Catcher in the Rye? For some reason, everytime I read one of your posts, I swear I end up hearing the theme music to the Twilight Zone, anyone else hear it?

Posted by: JR at July 1, 2006 9:36 PM
Comment #164031

phx8

Your source for his “lies”? Canadian National Post - the same people who found the terrorists arrested in Canada came from a “broad strata” of society? Nice try. He sticks by his story, he reported from the ground and many of his assertions are backed up by NGO’s on the ground and the Coalition partners, does the National Post stick by their reporting on the terror suspects?

Posted by: JR at July 1, 2006 9:43 PM
Comment #164038

JR,
http://www.melaniephillips.com/diary/?p=1237

Here is the apology from the Canadian National Post, and the claim by this fellow that his claim was misinterpreted.

Here is Red Column poster Dr Politico on the same topic:

http://www.watchblog.com/republicans/archives/003649.html

Sorry, JR, but the author you link has, in fact, been discredited. But I am touched that he is “sticking to his story.” How very Neocon of him.

Better luck next time.

Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 10:14 PM
Comment #164053

The apology never discredits him, it says the Iranians told them it wasn’t true. Great source there! All his other sources inside Iran and in the international Jewish community back his story that the badges are being pursued.

Besides “sources” discrediting his Iranian badge report, what have you seen that is false in his Iraq report? Has it been discredited by Iran too? Businesses are growing, the government is coming together, the vast majority outside of Baghdad are peaceful, a huge growth has occurred in a free press and despite the claims of a “civil war”, the people of Iraq are much better today than last year, or the last year of Saddams reign. Freedom works and to those on the anti-war side, NOTHING good will ever be good enough. Sorry, I’ll take his word and the word of coalition partners on the ground before I believe the Iranians, aren’t they the ones that are refining uranium for “peaceful purposes?

Posted by: JR at July 1, 2006 10:53 PM
Comment #164059

JR,
You are being misled by a group called Benador Associates. Here are some members, according to Wikipedia:

“Richard Perle, the former chairman of the Defense Policy Board; former CIA director James Woolsey; Daily News columnist A.M. Rosenthal; American Enterprise Institute resident scholar Michael Ledeen; National Review contributing editor Frank Gaffney Jr.; former Washington Times editor in chief Arnaud de Borchgrave; former Secretary of State Alexander Haig Jr.; and Iraqi dissident Kanan Makiya, a Brandeis professor who advocated the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
Speakers:
Max Boot, Ismail Cem, Arnaud de Borchgrave, Khalid Durán, John Eibner, Hillel Fradkin, Frank J. Gaffney, Jr. , Michel Gurfinkiel , Alexander M. Haig, Jr. , Khidhir Hamza, Fereydoun Hoveyda, Mansoor Ijaz, Charles Jacobs, Shaykh Kabbani, Stanley H. Kaplan, Martin Kramer, Charles Krauthammer, George Jonas, Michael Ledeen , Kanan Makiya, Paul Marshall, Laurie Mylroie , Azar Nafisi, John O’Sullivan, Richard Perle, Walid Phares, Richard Pipes, Dennis Prager, Tom Rose, A.M. Rosenthal, Barry Rubin, Tashbih Sayyed, Richard O. Spertzel, Amir Taheri, Ruth Wedgwood, R. James Woolsey, Jr. , Meyrav Wurmser.”

Amir Taheri is a thoroughly discredited source of information:

“Taheri’s 1989 book, Nest of Spies, was also debunked for citing “nonexistent sources,” fabricating “nonexistent substance in cases where the sources existed,” and distorting the facts “beyond recognition.” Last year, Taheri falsely claimed that Iran’s current ambassador to the United Nations took part in the 1979 hostage crisis at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. Yet, Taheri was part of an “Iraq experts” briefing of President Bush last month. “My major concern is the large picture,” Benador told Cohler-Esses. “As much as being accurate is important, in the end it’s important to side with what’s right. What’s wrong is siding with the terrorists.”
http://www.prwatch.org/node/4904

One piece of good news from Iraq which is very interesting. The guerrillas in the north have ceased sabotaging the oil pipelines, and total oil exports from Iraq are now at or above what they were under Saddam Hussein for the first time in a long time.

Something happened. Did the collapse of the Zarqawi network influence this? Unlikely. Al Qaida in Iraq usually targeted Shias, especially policemen, and usually used suicide bombers. More likely, someone has cut a deal. But who? Flowing oil in exchange for a piece of the action? An alliance of convenience between Sunnis and Kurds? Which multinational corporations might be involved? We are talking very very large sums of money here.


Posted by: phx8 at July 1, 2006 11:22 PM
Comment #164080

Mr. Fitzsimmons,

You claim that the death rate of Iraq per 100,000 is less than some U.S. cities. Okay I can see that, but you must remeber, this is comparing the death rate of a city to the average death rate of an entire nation.

You must remeber that some parts of Iraq are much more violent than other regions. For example, compare Fallujah or Baghdad to Houston or Detriot; it would be pretty obvious that the two Iraqi cities would have higher death rates per 100,000.

Overall, the Iraqi national death rate per 100,000 is no doubt lower than a couple U.S. cities. However, when these violent U.S. cities are compared to areas around Baghdad, Tikrit, or Fallujah, where much of the violence occurs, I’m sure the deaths per 100,000 are higher around these areas than those of Houston or Detroit.

Also, there has been a recent controversy because Kurdish offcials, who represent Northern Iraq, don’t provide death toll figures to the Iraqi Gov’t. So who knows how accurate this statistic is to begin with.

These may seem like all numbers to many of us, but we must REMEMBER! THESE ARE ACTUAL HUMAN LIVES, WE SHOULDN’T BE JOYFUL THAT IRAQ’S DEATH TOLL IS HIGHER THAN OURS, OR VICE VERSA!!!

Posted by: greenstuff at July 2, 2006 12:52 AM
Comment #164297

Jack? JBOD?

Are you guys reading this MUCK?

This is what I mean by the last post on the article: “Bush can’t do nothin’ right.”

Be honest with yoursleves, now…
How many examples over the last several months have I posted that point out how REPUBLICAN-BIASED our media is? How many?

…and yet we get this intellectually dishonest garbage. I don’t know this author but the message is manipulative and dishonest crap.

Can you at least understand the frustration I have with your side now?

Posted by: RGF at July 2, 2006 4:11 PM
Comment #164375

RGF:

Your post doesn’t even merit a response, so I won’t respond.

To everybody else:

Most of you are avoiding the most important part of the article, and instead dwelling on King’s statistics. Quite frankly, all though the statistics are intended to bolster the argument, they are not the most paramount part of the article. What we should be paying attention to and discussing are the two examples I provided. The first was the CNN example:

“…essentially mitigating the significance of the terror leader’s death, asserting that the death of Zarqawi will aid Bin Laden and thus inferring that Zarqawi’s demise will hamper and abate the war effort.”

The second example involved the WMD’s, and how, according to Bozell, the story wasn’t even initially reported by some of the left-laced news networks, and downplayed by others.

I can spit out more examples if you’d like…they’re not that hard to find.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 2, 2006 10:12 PM
Comment #164379

Well, Alex, the WMD “findings” have been discussed a lot in different threads on EB, but the conclusion is that there’s a good reason most outlets ignored it; there was nothing there. It wasn’t a new find - it had been reported for years. It’s not representative of anything the administration talked about (active programs, nuclear plans, etc.). It’s just not WMDs in any real sense that we were led to believe the war was about.

In short, it was a lame PR attempt that didn’t earn any time on a news organization that wasn’t bias towards the administration.

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 2, 2006 10:25 PM
Comment #164380

WB (WatchBlog), not EB

Posted by: LawnBoy at July 2, 2006 10:28 PM
Comment #164432
This makes the enemy we are fighting THAT MUCH worse!! The fact that they hide with innocent children and their families.

Damn enemies that don’t want to stand alone, openly, on the free right in the middle of a target mark visible from 10,000 feet!

Get real, they’re maybe the worst human on earth, but they’re not stupid.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at July 3, 2006 9:05 AM
Comment #164473

answer me this…..Bush said,”Victory means exit strategy, and it’s important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is.” 4/99
If he demamnded an exit strategy while Clinton was in office….SHOULDN’T WE Demand an exit strategy from Bush….beside the one where he sloofed that responsibility to whomever has the pleasure of being president NEXT!
“Individuals should be accountable and responsible for their actions” GW while campaighning for gov. The repigs want to talk the talk but seem to refuse to WALK THE WALK all the while condemning others when they do!

Posted by: dedicated veteren at July 3, 2006 12:17 PM
Comment #164492

Dedicated veteran:

Although most of the left chooses to ignore it, President Bush does have an exit strategy for Iraq, despite its poor elucidation: train the Iraqi security forces until they are capable of defending Iraq on their own, and establishing a Democratic government (done) that can fully sustain itself without US facilitation (not done).

That is the plan, and it’s a strong one, and it’s a plan that inches closer to becoming a reality everyday.

Posted by: Alex Fitzsimmons at July 3, 2006 1:25 PM
Comment #174274

You just cant trust the liberal left-wing news after all look at what cost DAN BLATHER his job then theres the incedent in 1993 when NBSs news program DATELINE was cuaght faking a GM Truck explosion its just bad as ever those liberal left-wing journalists have no ethics

Posted by: krazy kagu at August 9, 2006 2:58 PM
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