New York Times-style “journalism” is threatened by Wikileaks

News ordered to fit

Julian Asange, writing in the Australian shortly before his arrest:

WikiLeaks coined a new type of journalism: scientific journalism. We work with other media outlets to bring people the news, but also to prove it is true. Scientific journalism allows you to read a news story, then to click online to see the original document it is based on. That way you can judge for yourself: Is the story true? Did the journalist report it accurately?

From the New York Times, Around the World, Distress Over Iran, written by David E. Sanger, James Glanz and Jo Becker:

The cables also contain a fresh American intelligence assessment of Iran’s missile program. They reveal for the first time that the United States believes that Iran has obtained advanced missiles from North Korea that could let it strike at Western European capitals and Moscow and help it develop more formidable long-range ballistic missiles.

From Counterspin, December 3, 2010: (I’m summarizing, as it is an audio broadcast): The Times faithfully gave the U.S. side of Iran’s weapons program, as cited in the leaked memo, but failed to tell the whole story. In the memo, which the Times refused to publish, representatives of Russian intelligence doubt that Iran has such missile capability, and note the North Korea has never successfully tested such a missile. Other news outlets cite American sources that downplay any Iranian missile threat.

In other words, the New York Times, in giving only half the story, is again lying to us about the weapons capability of a country that, as it so happens, our government (and the military-industrial complex behind it) want to attack. Seems we’ve been through this before.

If, as the jailed Assange asserts, “scientific” journalism should now show us the source of stories being reported on, the Times story would have immediately been seen as a lie. Ergo, the Times refused to allow access to the memo, which Counterspin obtained at the Wikileaks site.

It reminds me of the report put out by the United States Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities, aka the “Church Committee,” back in 1975.

The committee noted that the CIA had moles in most of our large newspapers, and even then, pre-Bush, maintained surveillance of members of congress, the White House and cabinet departments. They plant stories in the media (a favorite technique is to plant a story in a foreign newspaper so that it can be “discovered” by an American news source).

The Times' Miller: She lied, she lied, she lied

They have “journalists” who work as operatives for them, and operatives that work as journalists. (No doubt the Times’ Judith Miller, who fed a pipeline of lies to us about Iraq before the invasion, is such an operative. The Times, which noisily beat its breast in public about its integrity in firing low-level journalist Jayson Blair for plagiarism, never repudiated Miller.)

The Church Committee found 500 editors, journalists and publishers to be supported by the CIA. The CIA had subsidized publication of hundreds of books, and even owned wire services, newspapers, magazines, a publishing complex. It had recruited 5,000 or more academics around the country as spies and researchers, secretly financing them as they present themselves as independent scholars to the media.

As the Church Committee fades into history, the New York Times carries on with its disinformation, and Julian Assange is in jail for a broken condom.

About Mark Tokarski

Just a man who likes to read, argue, and occasionally be surprised.
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