(1) How HuffPost's actions --- and inactions --- put American soldiers in increased danger
ADDENDUM(1) How HuffPost's actions --- and inactions --- put American soldiers in increased danger
(2) Did Huff-Watch do anything to try to put a stop to all this?
HuffPost put American soldiers in more danger in three ways:
- HuffPost knowingly enabled "rich_misty" to spam its "news" threads with his abusive, off-topic, policy-violating comments and blood libels against our soldiers, in real-time, with little/no moderation, on a 24-7 basis, to the present date.
- HuffPost actively protected "rich_misty" when another user attempted to post credible, verifiable information to prove that (a) his incendiary accusations against U.S. soldiers are false, and (b) the pictures to which he was linking are fakes. HuffPost then repeatedly banned non-violating users who were victims of "rich_misty's" relentless attacks, or who became antagonists to his obsession to spread blood libels about American soldiers, etc.
- Via these actions, HuffPost provided "rich_misty" with credibility and legitimacy in the eyes of his admirers --- as well as in the eyes of unknown hundreds/thousands of users who may have been observing these threads at the time.
- An estimated 135,000 of HuffPost's unique monthly visitors live in Iran and Pakistan (see Section 4-4.3 here), two of the nations most responsible for fomenting, exporting, supporting and justifying Islamist terrorism around the world.
- Islamist terrorists and their supporters rely on blood libels against Americans (and Jews) to justify their bloody carnage against them. How far and wide have the blood libels, and links to fake pictures that "rich_misty" posted (which HuffPost approved, published and protected) traveled in the Islamist world? And have they played either a direct or indirect role in harm coming to American soldiers or intelligence personnel, as a result?
- How did these blood libels impact domestic Islamists (1, 2, 3)? As noted in Part 1, mere days after the events documented in this report, a recent convert to radical Islamism murdered one U.S. Army recruiter in Arkansas, and severely injured another, because he reported became "very angry" with the U.S. military. Did, do, and will the blood libels that HuffPost knowingly published and protected contribute to what is now referred to as "sudden jihad syndrome?" What about the phenomenon of attracting and recruiting new militant Islamists in U.S. prisons --- where many now have access to the Internet?
- How many otherwise intelligent, honest yet under-informed people living in Western nations were exposed to "rich_misty's" repeated blood libels? How will this influence them the next time they step into voting booths, to decide who will lead their nations' foreign policies? And will these decisions strengthen --- or undermine --- the U.S.'s and its allies' efforts to combat radical Islamists?
Huff-Watch contends that these questions are legitimate and important, even if the answers to them are currently unknowable.
(2) Did Huff-Watch do anything to try to put a stop to all this?
The answer to this question is two-fold:
- Huff-Watch established communications with certain governmental agencies, and retired members of the military and intelligence communities. Although we are not at liberty to discuss the result of these communications at this time, suffice to say that (a) there is great concern about the impact of globally-published blood libels against American soldiers --- especially fake photos disseminated from U.S. sources, and (b) efforts are underway to combat this problem.
- It wasn't until Huff-Watch began conducting additional research into this matter, and into HuffPost itself --- e.g. its actual moderation procedures, policies, and claims of nonpartisanship, which culminated in the site you are now reading --- that the larger context of these issues became apparent.
Via this report, and the Action Items listed below, we hope that public exposure and activist efforts will help to put a full and final stop to what HuffPost has been doing, and allowing to be done on its site.
Late addition: "Rich Misty" gets even crazier for 2010, and HuffPost continues facilitating him
January 14, 2010: On the Haitian earthquake thread, HuffPost permitted "Rich Misty" to report he's been working in his "lab," and that he's...
(C)lose to solving the energy crisis I think... 2-3 weeks away from the first working prototype tests on new fusion reactor technology.
Naw, no problem there, HuffPost. That clearly relates directly to the 230,000 or so Haitians who were killed by the earthquake, and the relief efforts underway --- while you continue censoring non-violating users on a minute-to-minute basis, and banning them after as few as six comments (special report here).
There are several means by which you can get involved in, and express your views on the issues documented in this report:
(1) GET INFORMED. There is no substitute for detailed knowledge from credible sources that have researched the issues discussed herein. Following are several useful reports and articles:
Global Islamic Media Front Instructs Islamists to Infiltrate Popular Non-Islamic Forums to Spread Pro-Islamic State Propaganda, Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), June 14, 2007.
The Use Of The Internet By Islamic Extremists, testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives' Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, by Bruce Hoffman, RAND Corporation, May 2006.
“E-Qaeda”: Jihadist Use Of The Internet, by Tim Pippard, Jane’s Strategic Advisory Services, April 16, 2009.
Terrorists Turn To The Web as Base Of Operations, by Steve Coll and Susan B. Glasser, The Washington Post, August 7, 2005.
Islam in America Series: Internet Jihad, by Kathy Shaidle, RightSideNews, March 22, 2009.
Al Qaeda: ‘Kicking Butt’ Online, by Leela Jacinto, France24, February 29, 2008.
The following is a list of select research organizations that produce in-depth analyses of these issues on an ongoing basis:
MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute)
Palestinian Media Watch
The Foundation for Defense of Democracies
The Investigative Project on Terrorism
The Middle East Forum
For detailed information about HuffPost, please see the following original articles by Huff-Watch:
Fast facts about HuffPost
The history of HuffPost's moderation of user comments on its news story threads
HuffPost policies & statements re user conduct and moderation
The top five myths about HuffPost --- versus the reality
The political evolution and "legitimization" of HuffPost
(2) SPEAK OUT: There is no substitute for a concise, well-written letter, email or fax to parties who have influence over the issues described herein. Some of these parties include:
HuffingtonPost officials:Send comments and questions to Huff-Watch at huffwatcher1 (at) gmail.com
Eric Hippeau, Chief Executive Officer
560 Broadway, Suite 308
New York, NY 10012
(646) 557-0803 (Fax)
(email address unavailable at this time)
Mario Ruiz, Vice President - Media Relations
Government officials --- a number of whom are also official HuffPost bloggers, as indicated:
Senator John D. Rockefeller, IV, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation, which recently conducted a hearing on "the future of journalism" at which Ms. Huffington testified:
531 Hart Senate Office Building
(202) 224-7665 (Fax)
NOTE: Five members of this committee are also official HuffPost bloggers, including Sen. John Kerry, Sen. Byron Dorgan, Sen. Barbara Boxer, Sen. Frank Lautenberg and Sen. Mark Begich.
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, Ranking Minority Member, Senate Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation:
284 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510-4304
(202) 224-0776 (Fax)
Sen. Joe Lieberman, Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and member of the Armed Services Committee:
706 Hart Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
(202) 224-9750 (Fax)
Sen. Carl Levin, Chairman of the Armed Services Committee (and an official HuffPost blogger):
269 Russell Office Building
Washington, DC 20510-2202
(202) 224-1388 (Fax)
NOTE: Below is a front-page splash headline regarding an April 22, 2009 editorial that Sen. Levin wrote exclusively for HuffPost.
Sen. John McCain, Ranking Member, Armed Services Committee
241 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
(202) 228-2862 (Fax)
Part 1: HuffPost's Protection Of Blood Libels Against The U.S. Military
Part 2: The May 28 Encounter With "Rich Misty"
Part 3: The May 30 Encounter With "Rich Misty"
Part 4: HuffPost's continuing protection of "Rich Misty" and his "friends"
Part 5: Addendum and Action Items