Prev | List | Random | Next
The more interesting question may not be how Newsweek goofed, but why the Muslim world is so ready to believe the story. For all the administration's huffing and puffing about Newsweek getting the story wrong, it has produced such a catalog of misdeeds at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo that almost any allegation is instantly credited abroad. The administration itself has said that 11 soldiers have been disciplined for abusing prisoners at Gitmo.Let me go against a trend and state with absolute sincerity that the Newsweek story by itself certainly didn't incite otherwise peaceful people to murder and riot. "The more interesting question" has indeed been asked above - why the Muslim world is so ready to believe the story? Let's dismiss the Times ignorant, racist (for want of a better term) portion of the question immediately - the accusation that 5 billion Muslims all have the same response to Newsweek's story - that deserves no comment. But why indeed would even a few thousand people take to the streets in an orgy of death over specious claims in an American magazine? They wouldn't. This explosion was the latest and largest in a series. No one has followed media attacks on the military closer than Mudville this past year - and here's a look back at some of the events that have been documented here. It is indeed a catalog of misdeeds.
In a protest Friday, angry Sunnis accused the troops of ripping pages in the mosque's copy of the Koran, Islam's holy book, as their leaders called for an end to the U.S. occupation in Iraq. Sunnis are the Muslim sect of deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.
"Bush, you are the devil," some protesters shouted. "We are the soldiers of Allah."
The video, shown to reporters, showed the calm sleuthing of soldiers and piles of machine guns and bomb-making materials.
Of course, we have no way of knowing whether Newsweek was aware of these events when they published their claims about desecration of a Koran last week.
"These are the kinds of pictures that will linger," said John Schulz, dean of Boston University's College of Communications and a former faculty member at the National War College.
"They'll be there in November when people go to vote."
More to come. (Updates will be posted.)
Good point Greyhawk.
Another interesting tidbit is provided by Gregory Djerejian at Belgravia Dispatch (http://www.belgraviadispatch.com/).I have wondered why all the previous reports of Koran abuse alleged by former terrorist inmates (I know of no other sources) did not provoke similar outrage especially since they were more widely reported in the MSM. Well Greg points us to the role of Imran Khan, a big sports (cricket) star among Pakistanis. He is the one who got the ball rolling (poor pun) by condemning the alleged abuse in a news conference.
Two observations about how people are people no matter where you go: First, celebraties of all ethnicities and nationalities seem to have an uncanny ability to speak loudly and ignorantly on all sorts of topics they would best advised to avoid. 2) Fans of all ethnicities and nationalities are equally uncanny in their ability to believe whatever the objects of their fanaticism say.Posted by PeterArgus at May 17, 2005 08:43 PM
LA Times circulation dropped 12.9% in the last year according to editor and publisher.
Newsweek lost $5.2 million last year.
Could we be witnessing the journalistic equivalent of suicide bombing?Posted by Soldier's Dad at May 17, 2005 09:31 PM
My nephew Lance Corporal Nick Kirven USMC was killed in action in Alishang, Afghanistan on Mother's Day....what a loss to our family --and to this great nation...We buried him yesterday in Arlington National Cemetery...He loved his family, his country, and the Marine Corps...21 years old...coming home in 3 weeks...Newsweek and other news organizations should not publish material like this.Posted by Bob Hawthorne at May 18, 2005 01:06 AM
I'm a first time visitor to this site...very interesting...I'll be back.
To Bob Hawthorne (post of May 18th) my deepest sympathy to your family and my deepest appreciation to Lance Corporal Nick Kirven, USMC !
Whether the facts are right or wrong, the editorial content should not be distributed at a time when American morale & world opinion are at an all-time low. We don't need to antagonize the world opinion any more than we already have. We need to be more understanding of other cultures & not be so condescending of others.Posted by Larry Crittenden at May 18, 2005 05:25 AM
You know? We really don't care how "famous" is this Mr. Isikoff of Newsweek; he lost already
his "good" name by his misrepresentation, lack
of professionalism and honesty, not talking about
the total lack of loyalty and patriotism to his
country and Amereican servicemen and women, and
the huge and irreparable damage he has
created to America!
That "juicy" article of his did really worth it
the scadal and the shame he thrown us in ? ? ?
I think you are giving American media way too much power over Arab and Persian thinking.
It's not so much what the American media reports as much as it is what the Arab media does with it. These are organizations that regularly present such programs as "The elders of Zion" hate propaganda as actual fact. I just think that Arabs and Persians distrust American media even more than Americans do.Posted by Patrick at May 18, 2005 08:38 PM
The Washington Post is also climbing on the bashing American military bandwagon to sell papers--after the sacrifice of my nephew Nicholas Kirven in the war on terror---in Afghanistan---and we continue to print trash about "supposed" things at Guantanamo to stir up violence and hate in the Arab world..Shame on Newsweek and the Post..Our services have representatives of all faiths as Chaplains, and every now and then we have a bad apple interrogating someone with lack of supervision...But this war on terror is not a piece of cake----and Americans need to wake up and realize the threat....It is real...There are terrorists which will do the same things to their families as we have witnessed in the Middle East...I suggest we as a whole, and as a nation, have a great deal of respect for all nations and religions, and even for ones with no religion...It would be nice if the Arab/Muslim world would rid themselves of their own KKK fanatics---and really practice peace and forgiveness---and encourage development and education in their own countries---vs the hate/ violence we find in the Middle East. So far, they have not stepped up to the plate---and that is where our fine young men and woman have accelerated ---ones like my nephew, stepped up to the plate, and began a systematic method of tracking down each and every terrorist, and eliminating them, one by one.....This war is not for the faint at heart, and may continue for years....Because we have been asleep at the helm. Remember our troops this Memorial Day---write to them, send care packages, honor them---and let your friends and neighbors know --Freedom is not Free....Perhaps Newsweek and the Wash Post writers will figure that out also...Posted by LtCol Bob Hawthorne, USAF Retired at May 27, 2005 06:31 PM Hide Comments | Show/Add Comments in Popup Window(8) | (Note: You must refresh main page to view newly posted comments here)