Posted by Brad @ 11:43 am on October 25th 2010

The Problem With the American Media in Four Minutes, Sixteen Seconds*

This week, WikiLeaks released a new load of shadily classified documents about the Iraq War. These documents chronicle, among other things, the civilian death toll (and the politics and ways in which those figures were suppressed and/or minimized), the U.S. complicity in widespread Iraqi torture and corruption, and the slaughter of civilians by American forces, not in a “collateral damage” fashion, but in ways that, even in a wartime situation, would probably constitute murder or at least provide cause to bring those charges in court martial proceedings (although that’s academic, as nobody has any interest in doing so). Also fascinating is the sausage-making behind-the-scenes stuff, and the ways in which our Department of Defense essentially railroads, soft-peddles, and flat-out lies to the American public in wartime (and then classifies everything, not for national security but for purely political/propaganda reasons).

Anyway, Julian Assange goes on CNN to talk about these things, and naturally, the reporter has absolutely no interest whatsoever in discussing them – 104,000 civil Iraqi deaths and a coordinated and successful campaign to keep the public in the dark about the real goings-ons in our name in Iraq, what a bummer of a story! And all, like, complicated and not fair and balanced! – instead preferring to try to nail Assange on “personal issue” stories, because clearly, whatever blood they can squeeze out of Assange’s own private life Entertainment-Tonight style is far more important.

And of course, CNN is pleased as punch that their idiocy was rewarded in Assange walking off set. Drama! Julian Assange can’t handle the tough questions or something! Journamalism prevails!

Glenn Greenwald pushes back against CNN and the NYT (doing the same thing, in print), here and here.

Or, as you should, go straight to the source.

*and me perpetuating it. Bad me!

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