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Excellent story. Independent journalism in America is dead.
Yup, there hasn't been any journalism in America since around the time that Cronkite turned against the Vietnam War, and there was damn little of it even back then. ALL we've had since is deep state propaganda pushing false narratives to manipulate public opinion into supporting or ignoring militarism and plutocracy.
We accuse Russia and other countries of having state media but we have state media which is why we will never fix ourselves until we are eventually defeated. We are incapable of self-correction. I am very bitter about our MSM and hold them more accountable than our govt officials for our deplorable state. All govts lie, if our MSM cheers on our govt then it encourages them to tell bigger and bigger lies.
As bad as FOX is, CNN is even worse. CNN will dismiss something as a 'Putin talking point', note, there is no regard for whether or not it is true. They will quote a U.S. govt employee as if they are quoting St. Peter. Why should we be surprised, look at how many govt employees now work for the cable and news networks.
And I think MSNBC is worse than both FOX and CNN.
So does this radical leftist.
Add "Bashir Assad gassed his own people" to the list of the world's biggest lies.
(FWIW, The list now grows wearily long.
We still have the oldies but goodies, like "The check is in the mail" and "I did not have sex with that woman, Miss Lewinsky," to name only two, but in recent years have added others, like "Epstein killed himself" and "Russia colluded in the 2016 election.")
Newsweek has been a mainstay of nothing for some time.
Au contraire, Newsweek is a mainstay of the Democrat Party.
It's really not tho. I have a pretty heavily skewed progressive network and if say it's only ever need as a source by the least educated progressives... If them. It really has fallen off the radar other than a source of click bait as far as I can tell
Not in a very long time.
Of course the "ZOMG Assad gassed his own people ZOMG!" story was an obvious hoax.
Of course the OCPW knew this. So did anyone else with the brains God gave a cat.
Of course the story was suppressed. Does Newsweek really think we are that stupid?
The only question is why, and the answer is obvious. Because the "bipartisan foreign policy consensus" (aka the "Deep State") wants its war on Syria, just as it got the war on Iraq that it so craved.
And it seems that a senior OCPW official ordered the deletion of all traces of the dissenting report. Just like clockwork. For some reason, TAC is not letting me post the link, but WikiLeaks has an unparalleled track record for scrupulous accuracy.
Nothing to see here, right? Right?
The real goal here is to provoke a war with Iran Syria's ally.
That's coming down the pike as well. Syria appears to be first on the neocon list.
What to say? Soft (or "soft") 1984 at its finest.
Maybe they should change their name to "Newspeak."
It's been obvious to anyone with half a brain that there have been no 'chemical attacks' carried out by the Syrian Government. The first one in Ghouta was exposed by Seymour Hersh, the second at Khan Shekhoun supposedly happened after Aleppo was almost liberated from the head-choppers, and one day after the US announced it would no longer seek Assad's removal ... this was mocked by one of my favorite cartoons ... a picture of Sun Tzu with the sarcastic 'quote', 'When your enemy is nearly defeated, and final victory is at hand, gas your own people so that nations greater than yours will intervene and destroy you'.
The final 'gas attack' in Douma was exposed immediately as a fake, because the Syrians and Russians had won and were already busing the terrorists to Idlib. Robert Fisk was there a day later and talked to the people at the clinic where supposed victims were taken and was told by the Doctors there that the people in the clinic were suffering from dust inhalation from the bombing, etc.
The draft report basically cast doubt on the whole story (as noted above) but the final report was doctored by a few people, no doubt under CIA direction.
There is nothing surprising about these revelations. It's nice to have corroboration, but as usual no one listens. We live today in an ocean of never-ceasing propaganda.
No chemical attacks? Don't make it easier than it is. There have been over 300 reported incidents(see Tobias Schneider). Good luck with proving that none of them were done by the Syrian government. The trick is to not to make it an issue of principle but to look at the 'quantitative' aspect. It was a revelation for me at the time (2002) that Ritter focused on the quantitative part of Iraq chemical weapons while for others the 'principle' was good enough (a principle which was then conflated with quantitative claims). For the principle one instance was enough. It was a good gamble to believe that in all likelyhood proof for the principle would eventually be found. Turned out to be wrong but still, a good gamble.
Later when James Risen focused on 'the principle' of Russian interference I knew enough from the start that he was going to mess up.
With chemical attacks in Syria one can now say that the major attacks cannot be blamed on the Syrian army and that is where the large majority of the lethal victims were made. About the principle of the many other claims one cannot be sure. One field decision to use commercial chlorine (not something lethal like mustard gas) to scare people away before a larger bombardment and you have a proof of the 'principle' of chemical weapons use. but the question is again: how much weight are you going to assign to that?
the three mentioned by the OP are all quantitatively suspect.
that last is an outright fabrication, full stop.
For two of the three the OPCW can be listed as complicit. For the Khan Shahkhun one the OPCW wasn't allowed to discuss who did it but there was no deception from their side. But there are many claims and Tobias Schneider (https://www.gppi.net/medi/G... compiled them with the claim that there must be a lot of truth in them since so many independent reports were made. But then he likes to use the interpretation of 'independent' which suits him. He describes himself as independent too.
Some of the claims have been investigated and countered.
Here you can find an extensive investigation of the chemical attack in Lataminah 2017 (which was highlighted by Bellingcat so that made it extra worthwhile to counter) https://www.hiddensyria.com/ and 5 related attack reports which use the same weaponry.
Yes, we do live in a never ceasing ocean of propaganda. Good luck trying to convince your fellow citizens that little of what they are sure of about the world is true. "We will know that our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." William Casey, CIA director in the Reagan administration. If Casey were to return from the dead, what he'd find would put a smile on his face.
That a story such as this comes as no surprise doesn't make it any less tragic. Verily, but "journalism" has become virtually indistinguishable from agitprop--and it matters not whether of the so called Left or Right. The example of Sy Hersh illustrates how a truly professional journalist is supposed to follow the story, no matter where it leads, and if it doesn't accord with one's world view--so be it.
For your information, deary, you need something more substantial than purported words of a purported insider (whose personality is as verifiable as the one of the purported whistleblower who purportedly heard Trump purportedly intimidating Zelensky with purportedly menacing eyebrow moves) in regards to purportedly Russian purported security teams purportedly removing something for a comment like this to stop making a laughing stock and a neocon sheeple out of you. Cruel galaxy, sob-sob.
More "Russia!, Russia!, Russia!" nonsense, the result of a lifetime of guzzling "Russia!, Russia!, Russia!" Kool-Aid. US and German companies supplied Saddam with the chemical supplies for his chem- & bio-weapons, weapons he used in his US-supported war-of-aggression against Iran in the '80's, after the Shah and the US were thrown out of Iran.
Please provide the nomenclature of the standard equipment on any Soviet aircraft that was used to deliver chemical weapons anywhere in Syria after 2011. Do not omit this information respecting the alleged chemical attack on Khan Sheikhoun on 4/4/17.
If you can't do this please do not bother me with vague info about standard equipment.
I guess Haddad didn't know he was working for the CIA.
Some of us noticed at the time that Assad had nothing to gain and much to lose by launching this attack. This was one of the more obvious lies connected to imperial aggression in Syria.
In my mind the worst thing about this is that it makes people who should know better into apologists or even fans of Assad and Putin
What exactly is that supposed to mean? Neither Assad nor Putin's crimes hold a candle to those of the enlightened West.
I see you subscribe to the "Assad the Mad Dog Ophthalmologist" version of Syria's governance.
Hell yes I'm a fan of both men. For starters, each one has way more than a 35-word vocabulary (to borrow from James Kunstler).
Fan of Assad AND Putin? Then you are not a serious person. You can be against US intervention in places like Syria while recognizing that the Assad / Putin governance model is horrible, When I see people like Pat Buchanan asking "Is Putin One of Us?" I worry about the future of the conservative movement or the American experiment.
"there was never any rethinking of how we had collectively pigeonholed Saddam into the “evil dictator” category. . . . the New Yorker—and its editor, David Remnick, have foregone the pursuit of truth in favor of publishing stories that demonize Assad,"
This is not the problem. Saddam was, in fact, an evil dictator. Assad, is in fact, a butcher well worthy of "demonization." The problem is that neither of these facts has anything to do with the questions of whether Saddam had an active WMD program in 2003 -- he absolutely didn't -- or whether Assad used chlorine gas in 2018 (I don't know, and this article doesn't help me decide).
The fact that Saddam was an evil dictator also doesn't answer the question of whether it was desirable to remove him. A mature mind is able to simultaneously embrace the fact that Saddam was a horrible butcher, and that removing him caused even worse disasters for Iraq. The best explanation I ever saw of this was from an Iraqi woman named Yusra, who had hated Saddam, but was nonetheless fleeing the Iraq the Americans had created: "In Saddam's time, I knew that if I kept my mouth shut, if I did not say anything against him, I would be safe. But now it is different. There are so many reasons why someone would want to kill me now: because I am Shiite, because I have a Sunni son, because I work for the Americans, because I drive, because I am a woman with a job, because . . . I don't wear my stupid hejab." (Dexter Filkins, The Forever War, p. 326). The key to avoiding more blunders like Iraq is not to convince the American people that Assad and Saddam are really nice, misunderstood guys, but to understand that evil dictators are neither necessarily threats to the USA, nor the worst of all possible calamities that could befall their people.
I certainly agree with Mr. Ritter that Tareq Haddad should not be silenced or ignored. The fact that Haddad's version is "Kremlin talking points" -- of course the Kremlin is going to talk about anything that makes its ally Assad look good -- tells us nothing about whether it's true or false.. The fact that the humanitarian organizations Syrian Civil Defense and Syrian American Medical Association are anti-Assad -- as of course any humanitarian organization would be -- also tells us nothing about whether their version is true or false. Truth or falsehood is determined by, as Mr. Ritter says, "the relevance of particles per billion, or engineering equations concerning the tensile strength of concrete and steel." Show us what the real evidence is, rather than asking us again to fall into the trap of assuming that the facts of reality are dictated by the political preferences of the adversaries.
While I agree with many of the things you wrote, I would like to focus on this part (because it's the only one I find somewhat objectionable. Meaning: deserving of a more nuanced approach, not simply "false")
This is not the problem. Saddam was, in fact, an evil dictator. Assad, is in fact, a butcher well worthy of "demonization."
Can you define "evil"?Is a person "evil" based on his actions or his intentions? Or both?
Because if we judge by their actions, I'd say many US Presidents can be considered as evil as Assad or Saddam, if not actually worse.
Bush Jr. started a war (based on a false premise) that not only led to the death of hundreds of thousands of people, but also to the destabilization of a whole region of the world, whose consequences we are witnessing to this very day.
Obama, together with Cameron and Sarkozy, helped remove the "evil dictator" Qaddafi, plunging Libya into chaos and preparing the way for the international confrontation that is escalating these very days.I'm Italian and I can assure you that we have to deal on a daily basis with the tragedy of poor desperate people drowning in the Mediterranean while trying to escape open slave markets in Libya.
In 2001-2003 the US used Syria as a destination for its "extraordinary rendition + torture" program of suspected terrorists. So, if the Assads are evil, how can we define those people who decided to lean onto "evil" in order to be able to do something they wouldn't be allowed to do at home?
Power structures are not about "evil" or "good", They are concerned with "interests" and "self-perpetuation". And while they can be brutal and uncompromising (like in Saddam's Iraq or Assad's Syria), they are not usually gratuitously so. At least, not completely.For example, while I think no one can argue that the Syrian State is governed with an iron fist by its power structure, the current war - that is entering its ninth year - has shown that the Syrian government is confronted by an armed opposition that is at least as brutal as the government is, but also much more fanatical and sectarian.
So, I guess my point is: we should refrain from implementing simplistic solutions in order to solve complex problems that are the result of the layering of tens (if not hundreds) of years of local power, social and cultural dynamics. Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria are proof enough that coming to a country "all guns blazing" and removing its leadership doesn't solve the underlying issues that created the conditions in which those "iron fisted" leaderships prospered. Regime change operations usually leave a country in much worse conditions than it were when they started. Which can be considered an "evil" act in itself.
I would define evil as seeking your own well-being by destroying that of others. I entirely agree with you that several US presidents have been evil, and the rendition program was evil. Why would that make Assad, a systematic user of torture as bad as anything done in the rendition sites, less of an evil dictator?
I agree also that simplistic, all-guns-blazing solutions often fail, indeed, that was one of my main points.
That we should conclude from this that good and evil are not applicable to governments, or that all governments are ultimately the same, I cannot agree with. I am an immigration lawyer, and I deal every day with people to whom the question of whether they live in America or live in a totalitarian country is a question of life and death. As an Italian dealing with Libyan refugees, you clearly are familiar with the same problem; the Italian government and the Libyan government are not equally evil.
Horrible butcher indeed ! His name is Bush jr.
Not unlike another butcher whose name is Obama .
An excellent comment. I have yet to see, however, any evidence of Assad the Butcher beyond the fact that hundreds of thousands of civilians have died in the war to survive a vicious campaign against Syria by foreign government war criminals. Or that the Syrian government did not choose to meekly surrender because Muslim Brotherhood/jihadi filth wanted to grab power.
Foreign war criminals started the war against Syria and Assad and Putin are finishing it. This upsets a lot of people.
"Assad, is in fact, a butcher well worthy of "demonization." "
BS, and you should be ashamed of yourself for beig an empty-headed purveyor of establishment LIES. Assad was an Ophthalmologist and ran a pratice in London before he was called to serve following his fathers death. He is a natural reformer, but he couldn't dismantle his fathers authoritarian state as the radical Islamists within were a great threat and he had to go slow in his reforms. He has courageously held on and fought his nations enemies, even when all looked hopeless. You think he's a "butcher"? Why? because he leads his nation and its army as it fights and kills terrorists and foreign enemies?
George Shrub was a butcher for killing 1M iraqis out of spite. Obama was a butcher for destroying Libya and unleashing terrorist hordes on Syria.
You have no idea what you are talking about.
Daniel, have you made any effort to research the question of whether a chlorine gas attack took place yourself? Anyone who does can see what the truth about the claim is. I fully expected the "attack" to take place. People who pay attention to what is happening on the ground in Syria on a daily basis predicted the "chemical attack because that is what the headchoppers resort to when they are in desperate circumstances. Have you every asked yourself why, when victory over the US sponsored headchoppers had already been achieved, Assad would use a chemical that could confer no military advantage whatsoever in a location that had no military value that could provide the US with a pretext to attack? Did you ever ask yourself, who could possibly benefit from such an attack? If you ask that question you know who the responsible party was.
Have a look at the "victims" of the attack as they pour into a hospital while being filmed by a camera man who accompanied their trip to the hospital. The video was comical. None of the "victims" had any symptoms of a chemical weapons injury. Hospital staff report that they ran into the hospital and became pouring water on themselves while yelling "chemical attack." Take a look at Robert Fisk's video of his visit to the hospital. There are other video done by respected journalist who visited the area. No one is able to corroborator claims that there was a chemical attack. You don't need to rely on Ritter to learn what the truth is. You need monitor events in Syria closely and ask critical questions.
"“I have collected evidence of how they [the OPCW] suppressed the story in addition to evidence from another case where info inconvenient to US govt was removed, though it was factually correct.” Haddad further noted that he had been threatened by Newsweek with legal action if he sought to publish his findings elsewhere."
As usual Inspector Ritter, well done. Excuse me given the above in light of what has been coming to light concerning powerful players in the establishment we are supposed to trust, no less so than the media ---- at the moment I can only
laugh and laugh loud . . . Newsweek is threatening legal action against one of its, now former employees, because of a news story. My how the worm has turned . . .a medium such as Newsweek, a vanguard of freedom of the press and free speech, wants to prosecute one of their to prevent the same.
It is nice that what appeared skeptical from the beginning is has begun eating its way out of the opaque paper bag of needless intervention.
Haddad’s new sources emerged after the publication of the OPCW’s final report on the Douma incident in July 2019. That document concluded that chlorine had been used as a weapon at Douma, likely viachlorine canisters dropped from aircraft—making the Syrian government solely responsible and legitimizing the U.S.-led aerial attacks.
The link is to the July 2018 OPCW Interim report and not to the March 2019 Final Report, which is here:
Apart from that, Wikileaks has just released four more documents that prove that:1) The toxicologists consulted by the original Fact Finding Mission in June of 2018 were convinced that the symptoms the alleged victims were showing in videos and pictures were not compatible with chlorine poisoning.2) The OPCW management replaced all members of the original FFM sent to Douma except for a paramedic once the first reports began coming in and they realized the inspectors were very skeptical about the Western narrative of a chemical attack happening in the first place.That is: the OPCW management hand-picked a different team, likely with the intent of getting the kind of report they were looking for.
The real scandal is that the US has committed blatant treason in Syria by supporting Al Qaeda. This truth must be downplayed at all costs, and the OPCW cover-up is a minor detail compared to covering up treason. Despite our efforts, Syria and its allies have defeated AQ everywhere except Idlib, and are now preparing the final assault to liberate Idlib. True to form, Western propaganda now whips up renewed hatred against Russia and singing the praises of the AQ-in-Syria leader, Abu Mohammed al-Jolani.
That choice, ironic bit of truth is studiously avoided by the MSM.
https://www.rt.com/news/476...OPCW official took active steps to conceal dissent and support the coverup.
Evidence has been building for some time that the OPCW cooked the books in its investigation of alleged chemical weapons use in the Syrian town of Douma on April 7, 2018. ...”
“... OPCW cooked the books ...” means what? The term cooking the books is based in an old secondary definition of the word cook, which is to present something that has been altered in an underhanded way. By the mid-1800s the term cooking the books had come into use to mean manipulating financial records in order to deceive.
The common man or woman understand the meaning to be: lie, fabricate and falsify.
Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.”"Politics and the English Language" (1946) is an essay by George Orwell
Mr. Ritter is, or, at least once, was better than that ... political language.
“... For its part, Newsweek, through a spokesperson, told a reporter, “The writer [Haddad] pitched a conspiracy theory rather than an idea for objective reporting. Newsweek editors rejected the pitch. ...”
[ then ]“The Free Press” John Swinton on the Free PressOne night, probably in 1880, John Swinton, then the preeminent New York journalist, was the guest of honour at a banquet given him by the leaders of his craft. Someone who knew neither the press nor Swinton offered a toast to the independent press. Swinton outraged his colleagues by replying:“There is no such thing, at this date of the world’s history, in America, as an independent press. You know it and I know it.There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print. I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with.Others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job. If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone.The business of the journalists is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press?We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes.”(Source: Labor’s Untold Story, by Richard O. Boyer and Herbert M. Morais, published by United Electrical, Radio & Machine Workers of America, NY, 1955/1979.)
[ now ]The press is a gang of cruel faggots. Journalism is not a profession or a trade. It is a cheap catch-all for fuckoffs and misfits—a false doorway to the backside of life, a filthy piss-ridden little hole nailed off by the building inspector, but just deep enough for a wino to curl up from the sidewalk and masturbate like a chimp in a zoo-cage.Hunter S. Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
“... The writer [Haddad] pitched a conspiracy theory ...”the pejorative phrase “conspiracy theory” casts the tin foil cap on the depersonalized and diminished a human being as “... The writer. ...”
Last, but not least, “... The current director general, Fernando Arias, defended the work of his organization, declaring, “While some of these diverse views continue to circulate in some public discussion forums, I would like to reiterate that I stand by the independent, professional conclusion [of the investigation].”...”
José Bustani, the retired Brazilian diplomat and former head of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons recalled John Bolton saying, referring to the then-vice president of the United States Dick Chaney.
“We can’t accept your management style.”
Bolton continued, according to Bustani’s recollections:
“You have 24 hours to leave the organization, and if you don’t comply with this decision by Washington, we have ways to retaliate against you.”
There was a pause.
“We know where your kids live. You have two sons in New York.”
In early 2002, a year before the invasion of Iraq, the Bush administration was putting intense pressure on Bustani to quit as director-general of the OPCW — despite the fact that he had been unanimously re-elected to head the 145-nation body just two years earlier. His transgression? Negotiating with Saddam Hussein’s Iraq to allow OPCW weapons inspectors to make unannounced visits to that country — thereby undermining Washington’s rationale for regime change.
Mr. Ritter, of course, has no knowledge or understanding of Iraq or “cooked books” on weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
Political language, what is that?
Journalists and journalism, what is that?
And, so it goes ...dennis hanna
😯Bolton actually made a threat that would have sent a Muslim or an Iraqi to Guantanamo if made against anyone supporting sanctions and wars against Iraq , against any WMD accusers , or Bush - Cheney cabinet members
All so very true. However, given the world we live in, I think the comment concerning Mr. Ritter is a tad harsh. While there is no mention about these facts coming out of OPCW in the MSM, Mr. Ritter and TAC mention it in a conspicuous way. I personally took the language employed by Mr Ritter as sarcasm... As about his knowledge on the identified subjects, I cannot be so presumptuous.
I believe that Swinton modified that remark somewhat by saying "unless it's in the country towns". But no independence in the metro areas.
What strikes me as so amusing about the way "conspiracy theory" is used against those swimming against the tide. It might be one thing if the MSM and the Democrats kept their beliefs pure on that account. But the entire impeachment case against Trump is one big conspiracy theory, with first Russia and now Ukraine as co-conspirators with Trump to subvert our judicial-and-bureaucratic oligarchy - cynically called our "democracy". And yet none dare call it what it is when practiced by such respectable sorts as our MSM and the Democrats.
US media is so ridiculous and pathetic; former and current Communist nations have been feeling sorry for everyday Americans for years. Little do they know many of us have learned to 20/20 see through the psychopathy...and glance "their stories" as a person would have viewed the National Enquirer 30 years ago.
I'm pretty sure the National Enquirer is much more honest in it's reporting today vs. MSN.
American myths - Taliban did not hand over Bin Ledeen An intact Passport is found at the 911 site Iran is on the cusp of testing nuclear bombs Ghaddafi is about to unleash black mercenaries with viagra on the Libyan Somalian Islamist has pledged allegiance to Al Quida Yemen is harboring Al Qaida Syria has been gassing Pakistan has done nothing against terrorism
The eternal myths and eternal collection of lies in each word of the following sentence— The idyllic Americans minding their daily business and being faithful with the god and the family can’t comprehend the threat USA faces, from the fanatics from the envious from the uncivilized or from the repressive government , which is a force for the good