Monday, October 25, 2010

HuffPost outdoes Al-Jazeera in smearing the U.S. military, incites user smear-fest (HuffPost: "Approved!!!")

"[At HuffPost] there are guidelines that have to be followed -- and they include a prohibition on... inflammatory claims..."
- Feb. 1, 2010

“[T]oo many reporters have forgotten that the highest calling of journalists is to ferret out the truth, consequences be damned...
- July 29, 2009

How hard is it to outdo Al-Jazeera in terms of inflammatory, malicious libels?
This is no small feat, given the fact that the Arabic "news" network has
a documented history of smearing American soldiers, and even praising Islamist terrorists who murder Jewish toddlers with their bare hands. Yet Al-Jazeera is the "news" network to which HuffPost has turned time and time and time and time again, as a "source" for inciting hatred against American soldiers, Israel and Jews, based on lies and propaganda. (Would it surprise you to learn that HuffPost has also run advertisements for Al-Jazeera?)

Less than three months ago, as we documented here, HuffPost out-did Al-Jazeera in terms of anti-Israel incitement.
On October 22, 2010, however, HuffPost apparently decided it wanted to outdo Al-Jazeera in terms of smearing the U.S. military, in the context of the Wikileaks document dump. It is our grim duty to report that HuffPost --- the #1 most-read blog in the world and a top-ten U.S. "news" site --- succeeded in this shameful quest.
If, after reading this article, you become outraged by HuffPost's acts --- and how they can only help to advance the cyber-jihad, and endanger our troops --- we encourage you to voice your thoughts (politely, please) to its senior management and major advertisers. You might also forward this article to any soldiers you know, or anyone who cares about them.

* * *

Background: On October 21, 2010, the notorious, lying, anti-U.S. military propaganda outfit Wikileaks publicly released 400,000 classified U.S. military documents that it unlawfully obtained, concerning the Iraq war on the public. Several months ago, it provided the documents to a few select news organizations, including the New York Times, who agreed to analyze them, and release their findings at the same time (on Oct. 21).

Among the key findings that the Wikileak documents reportedly revealed:
  • The Iraqi military and police are accused of having abused and killed suspected terrorists and insurgents.
  • After the U.S. military became aware of these allegations, it did little or nothing about them, in part due to a lack of clear orders and policies concerning such matters.
  • Although there were few additional instances of U.S. and coalition abuse of prisoners, none were classified as serious (as compared to the Abu Grhaib scandal). Apparently, the worst case of "abuse" was... "a (U.S.) soldier was censured for writing a mocking slur with a marker on the forehead of a crying detainee." (source: NY Times). Keep that in mind as you review this article.
  • As has long been alleged, Iran has been providing material support and training to Iraqi insurgents, including explosive formed projectiles (EPTs), the most deadly roadside bombs, responsible for killing and maiming hundreds of U.S. soldiers.
  • Iran had also been providing Hezbollah terrorists from Lebanon to fight alongside Iraqi terrorists.
  • The number of Iraqis killed during coalition activities (but not caused by them) stands at less than 20% of the egregiously-inflated numbers that the radical left has been claiming for years, but slightly more than had been previously reported by the U.S. government. Approximately 25% of those killed were classified as terrorists or insurgents --- far higher than had been previously reported.
  • U.S. military and coalition forces discovered numerous caches of WMDs inside Iraq --- confirming what had been long suspected (more here)

The AP --- HuffPost's #1 source for news stories --- played the story relatively "straight":
Iraq war leaks: No US investigation of many abuses
U.S. forces often failed to follow up on credible evidence that Iraqi forces mistreated, tortured and killed their captives in the battle against a violent insurgency, according to accounts contained in what was purportedly the largest leak of secret information in U.S. history. The documents are among nearly 400,000 released Friday by the WikiLeaks website in defiance of Pentagon insistence that the action puts the lives of U.S. troops and their coalition partners at risk. Although the documents appear to be authentic, their origin could not be independently confirmed, and WikiLeaks declined to offer any details about them.

The BBC --- another primary source HuffPost turns to for raw stories, and not exactly known for a pro-U.S. military stance --- played the story similarly:
US forces 'ignored Iraq torture'
The biggest leak of military records in US history, released by Wikileaks, shows commanders did not investigate torture by the Iraqi authorities.

provided the most contextual headline of all:
NYT: U.S. documents detail horrific abuse by Iraq's army, police


How did the Al-Jazeera play the Wikileaks story?


Al-Jazeera played it relatively straight, even if it neglected to put in its headline that it was Iraqi police officers and soldiers that were doing the torturing:
US turned blind eye to torture
Leaked documents on Iraq war contain thousands of allegations of abuse, but a Pentagon order told troops to ignore them.


So, how did HUFFPOST play the Wikileaks story?


So, having reviewed at least some of those (credible) news sources' accounts of the Wikileaks documents, HuffPost apparently decided to turn the truth and the significant findings on their heads, and publish this inflammatory, incendiary, malicious splash on its front page:
Wikileaks Iraq War Logs: U.S. Troops Abused Prisoners Until At Least 2009
Three key points, right off the bat:
  • HuffPost places a screaming, red-letter headline, "TORTURE, ABUSE, MURDER" directly above a photo of U.S. soldiers --- clearly accusing them of perpetrating these acts, while absolving the Iraqi military and police, the actual perpetrators.
  • Given the fact that 350,000+ of HuffPost's unique monthly visitors originate in Muslim-majority nations --- including Iran, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia --- how great a leap is it to imagine how such a malicious, libelous, false headline such as this could provoke attacks on U.S. soldiers, in "retaliation"?
  • As noted earlier, apparently the worst case of "abuse" by a U.S. soldier was one who... "was censured for writing a mocking slur with a marker on the forehead of a crying detainee." (source: NY Times).

HuffPost also decided to publish a similar, inflammatory splash at the top of its World page:

Why would HuffPost deliberately twist the headline to falsely insinuate that the U.S. military was responsible for all or the majority of the "torture, murder, abuse" that the Wikileaks dump described --- instead of attributing it to the Iraqi military and police?

Perhaps someday, someone in a position of influence will ask HuffPost to explain itself. And while they're at it, we hope they'll also ask it to explain why it has engaged in its multi-year "journalistic jihad" against the U.S. military, as documented in this archive.


So what kinds of user comments were incited by this "red meat" --- which HuffPost reviewed, approved and decided to publish? Need you ask?


HuffPost reviewed, approved and decided to publish every one of the following hate-filled comments, in response to its incitement. This is but a sampling of the comments that appeared on the thread.

Also, note how many of these users have
200-700 or more "fans," meaning they are not hit and run "trolls" that Ms. Huffington falsely claims are the ones responsible for comments that violate her site's policies (such as libeling anyone, ad hominem attacks, conspiracy theories, etc.). And as you review these comments, ask yourself two questions:
(1) Could some of these "approved" users be cyber-jihadis, among the 350,000+ of HuffPost's unique monthly visitors originate in Muslim-majority nations --- including Iran, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia?
How do their hate-filled comments fundamentally differ from those one would find at al-Jazeera, or Al Qaeda's hate site?

First up --- HuffPost approves a user who blames Afghanistan on... Israel (who could have seen this coming?):

Next up, HuffPost approved the routine, garden-variety libeling of U.S. soldiers, as mercenaries, murderers, and the like --- even though its policy claims it prohibits such inflammatory, malicious libels.
Except that's a policy that's kind of hard to enforce when HuffPost itself recently libeled (former) U.S. soldiers are "mercenaries" --- on its front page:

And what would a HuffPost thread be, without a HuffPost-approved, open threat against someone, of some kind? In this case, HuffPost's malicious libel against U.S. soldiers apparently wound up "TurdIsTheWord" ---- an actual or aspiring cyber-jihadi --- sufficiently to openly threaten mass-murder of Americans (see second comment). And of course, HuffPost reviewed, approved and decided to publish this threat:

And as noted elsewhere, at the same time, HuffPost was busily banning users who dare to stand up to its protected maniacs who issue open threats (proof available upon request).

Want to see more of the comments that HuffPost reviewed, approved and decided to publish? Go to the thread.




Are you outraged at HuffPost's inflammatory, malicious libels against the U.S. military --- especially as it has repeatedly claimed to be a nonpartisan "newspaper"? Are you shocked by HuffPost's ongoing use of Al-Jazeera as a "news" source, given its long history of lying about our soldiers, and about Israel and Jews?

If so, we urge you to do three things:

(1) Make your voice known to HuffPost's senior management (politely, please), here

(2) Consider writing to one or more of HuffPost's top advertisers, to let them know your thoughts on what they're enabling with their ad dollars

(3) Forward the link to this story along to others who support our soldiers


UPDATE 1, Oct 23: HuffPost asks its readers for help in sifting through the Wikileak documents --- after it has maliciously smeared the U.S. military


On October 23, HuffPost slightly demoted the story on its front page --- but now asked its readers to report what they found in the Wikileaks documents:

Question: If HuffPost is such an authority on the Wikileaks documents, and was comfortable enough with what they contain to so maliciously libel U.S. soldiers on its front page, why would its crack team of 53 "editors" ask for help from the general public to sift through them, and report their findings?


UPDATE 2, Oct 23: HuffPost ignores its new, favorite source for info on foreign affairs --- WIRED magazine --- on WMD discovery in Wikileaks dump


As we documented here, it was only a few weeks ago that HuffPost ran on its front page a verbatim libel from WIRED magazine, calling American security contractors "mercenaries." In the preceding months, HuffPost has been citing and running an increasing number of materials from WIRED --- apparently only so long as they present the worst possible depiction of the U.S. military, or outrageous libels and smears against it, as in the case of calling honorably discharged members "mercenaries."

But a funny thing happened on Oct. 23. WIRED ran an article entitled:
WikiLeaks Show WMD Hunt Continued in Iraq – With Surprising Results

(Excerpt): An initial glance at the WikiLeaks war logs doesn’t reveal evidence of some massive WMD program by the Saddam Hussein regime — the Bush administration’s most (in)famous rationale for invading Iraq. But chemical weapons, especially, did not vanish from the Iraqi battlefield. Remnants of Saddam’s toxic arsenal, largely destroyed after the Gulf War, remained. Jihadists, insurgents and foreign (possibly Iranian) agitators turned to these stockpiles during the Iraq conflict — and may have brewed up their own deadly agents. [...]

Meanwhile, the second battle of Fallujah was raging in Anbar province. In the southeastern corner of the city, American forces came across a “house with a chemical lab … substances found are similar to ones (in lesser quantities located a previous chemical lab.” The following day, there’s a call in another part of the city for explosive experts to dispose of a “chemical cache.”

Nearly three years later, American troops were still finding WMD in the region. An armored Buffalo vehicle unearthed a cache of artillery shells “that was covered by sacks and leaves under an Iraqi Community Watch checkpoint. “The 155mm rounds are filled with an unknown liquid, and several of which are leaking a black tar-like substance.” Initial tests were inconclusive. But later, “the rounds tested positive for mustard.”

HuffPost jumped right on this, and posted it right at the top of its front page, as a screaming headline, right?

Wrong. HuffPost made no mention of this article, or the WMD issue in general.

We suspect this editorial decision, along with the way that HuffPost treats the U.S. military in general, is the practical application of what its former CEO meant when she said, several years ago, that the site approaches news with "new ideas about balance and fairness." Uh-huh.



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