November 30, 2006

Enemy Propaganda, the Press, and Why it Matters

bakr_brigades_ramadi_massacre_revenge.jpgMichelle Malkin does an excellent job in today's Vent. Go check it out. The second half of today's Vent talks about an earlier story, run in the Los Angeles Times, about 30 civilians alleged to have been killed in Ramadi. Now thoroughly debunked. But which the Times refuses to retract.

Incidentally, al Quds press and Mafkarat al-Islam (Islam Memo), two Islamist news sources with ties to Sunni insurgents also published the same report (English synopsis here). Which means it is very likely that the stringers which the LA Times relied on were, in fact, the same ones employed by al Quds & Mafkarat al-Islam. In other words, insurgent propagandists themselves!

The US State Department calls Mafkarat al-Islam, "the most unreliable source of "news" about Iraq on the Internet." Good job LA Times!

Reuters own stringers, who themselves often have ties to the Sunni insurgency, only reported that unnamed witnesses, "saw several bodies of adult men lying in a street. Of course, these "sources" claimed the young men were just playing soccer.

Two different accounts of the same incident from the MSM. One of them claiming women and children bombed, the other young men killed. Neither of them meshing with first hand reports from US soldiers engaged in the conflict.

So, why does this matter? Because the terrorists disseminate media reports about "attrocities" amongst themselves. They use reports, such as the "Ramadi massacre" to prove to the world that they are really freedom fighters and that it is US forces that are killing civilians in Iraq.

Earlier I had reported that it was Ansar al Sunna which had produced a "Ramadi revenge" video. I was wrong. It was another insurgent group, Jaish Abu Bakr, which produced the video. The video shows four attacks "in response to the massacre of civilians by the Crusaders in the city of al-Ramadi during air strikes"

What massacre of civilians? The one that didn't happen. The one, though, that the LA Times and the Islamist al Quds press reported.

I'm not inclined to believe that members of the Jaish Abu Bakr brigades read the Times, but they do read al Quds and Mafkarat al-Islam. Reading those publications and others which routinely accuse the US of war crimes leads Muslims around the world to view this conflict as one in which we are the bad guys--or at the very least, to equivocate between the resistance and the occupiers.

The more that believe, the larger the pool for potential jihadis. And from among that pool, the jihadis are recruited.

Now, the US and Western public is being exposed to the same jihadi propaganda. Only coming from our own media. And is there any reason that the American public should believe reports coming from Iraq when at least some of the sources for those reports are clearly enemy propagandists? I. Think. Not.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 04:00 PM | Comments |