BBC: US tries to Boost Patriotism, Faked Rescue: Jessica Lynch

by Cassiline 57 Replies latest social current

  • Cassiline

    Blondie check your PM, perhaps you can post the post for me?

  • Cassiline
  • obiwan

    Why am I not surprised? No womd so you gotta do something to make everthing look like it was needed.

  • Brummie

    The commandos refused a key and instead broke down doors and went in with guns drawn. They carried away the prisoner in the dead of night with helicopter and armored vehicle backup - even though there was no Iraqi military presence and the hospital staff didn't resist.


  • blondie

    They didn't come through, Cassie, but here is what I think is the article in the Washington Post.

    On Not Admitting Our Mistakes

    By Richard Cohen

    Friday, May 23, 2003; Page A25

    Pfc. Jessica Lynch's capture and rescue was certainly a dramatic affair -- particularly in The Post. This newspaper told its readers that she had been shot and stabbed, that she had fought off her Iraqi attackers -- her gun blazing -- until she went down and was taken prisoner, hospitalized and then rescued eight days later. Trouble is, much of that may be false.

    Lynch apparently was not shot. Lynch was not stabbed. Lynch may not have put up much of a fight, maybe none at all. The lights may have gone out for her the moment her unit was attacked and her vehicle went off the road. It was then, probably, that she suffered several broken bones. This information, too, was in The Post -- sort of.

    The original story about Lynch was played on the front page. Later, when it turned out that some of the gripping details in the story were questionable, the "corrections" -- although they were never labeled that -- were played inside the paper. You are forgiven, therefore, if you do not have the facts on Jessica Lynch. They were extremely hard to get.

    I take my own paper to task for the manner in which it reported the Lynch story not because anyone did anything unethical or wrong -- or, for that matter, different from what is done elsewhere. On the contrary, all involved did their jobs. The two reporters who wrote the original story may have been misled or misinformed by their sources in the military. They were only reporting what they had been told.

    This sort of thing happens often. Journalists work on the fly, and so do the people we rely on for information. Maybe the Pentagon hyped the Lynch story. Maybe in the confusion of the rescue, some honest people in the Pentagon just got things wrong. Whatever the case, The Post seemed unable to simply say so. In no news story -- and certainly not on the front page -- did it say that the initial account might have been wrong. Only the paper's ombudsman, Michael Getler, was able to come straight out and say that the original account was suspect.

    We all know now of Jayson Blair, the former New York Times reporter and world-class liar. But what is perhaps most troubling about the Blair affair was the fact, reported by the Los Angeles Times, that many of the people Blair misquoted or lied about interviewing never bothered to complain. They either thought it would do no good or, worse, considered their woeful experience with the press to be routine.

    This is a black eye not just for the Times but for the press in general. We are not trusted. We are not believed. We are considered arrogant and unresponsive (actually, we're defensive). Some journalism school will have to come up with all the reasons for this, but one of them has to be the frequent inability of the press to talk to its readers in plain English. We sometimes don't know how to say either that we were wrong or that we have doubts about what we wrote.

    In the Lynch case, for instance, The Post sent a correspondent to the hospital in Iraq where she had been held. Doctors there said she had not been shot or stabbed but had suffered broken bones. Other stories quoted the commander of the military hospital in Germany where Lynch had been taken. He also said she had been neither shot nor stabbed. Her father, Greg Lynch Sr., said substantially the same thing.

    But none of those stories got the play of the first, and none of them specifically said, "Look, folks, we're not so sure anymore." Instead, the caveats and doubts were folded into other stories. The reader, like a CIA analyst, had to read everything to understand what The Post was saying. It seemed to be backing off its original account, but not in a forthright way.

    Why does this happen? Partly it's a matter of pretense. Journalism is alchemy with words. We turn nuances, lies, denials, spin and unreturned phone calls into something called The Truth. Often we succeed. When we don't, we don't want anyone to notice. We would like to appear omniscient. Who will read us if we are constantly expressing doubt?

    But the public is on to us. Our aloofness, our defensiveness, our sheer inability to concede uncertainty (which goes beyond merely correcting factual mistakes) has cost us plenty. Instead and too often, we add invisible asterisks of doubt to stories and then commend ourselves for our exemplary professionalism. We do a marvelous job. Too bad few people seem to notice -- or care.

    © 2003 The Washington Post Company

  • Cassiline

    Thanks Blondie!

    I still can't get the post up in its entirety. I have been having many problems trying to post, no post shows or only part of it. What’s strange is I will post sometimes as above and half the post is missing from the middle. Weird!



  • Aztec

    Thanks Cassi and Blondie! Very interesting reading. Not that I'm surprised the media would resort to near propoganda to make it's case.


  • Reborn2002

    I reserve judgment at this time.

    However I will say that it would not surprise me if it was staged. The US government is renowned for it's ability to dupe the naive public.

    Considering the fawning public so willing to display their uber-patriotism by sacrificing civil liberties and supporting wars unwaveringly even in the face of outright lies told to them by the government via propaganda demonstrates this.

  • Realist

    this whole war reminds me a lot of the movie WAG THE DOG. has anyone seen it???

  • gitasatsangha

    I will say this.. she's a real honey. I would definately date her, if I wasn't already dating somebody. Good looks, VA benefits, bad memory, how can I loose?

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