‘How Short Our Memory Is’ Looking back at the 10th anniversary of the Iraq invasion, MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough (Morning Joe, 3/19/13) scorned media outlets and others who failed to acknowledge their responsibility for leading the country into war: “The very same people who spent years beating up George Bush were the very ones beating the drum for Iraq’s regime change and Saddam Hussein’s ouster,” he said. “The New York Times grimly warned of the threat posed by Iraq in the final years of the Clinton administration. And on the eve of President Bush’s first inauguration, the Washington Post called Iraq’s […]
This week on CounterSpin: "Irrefutable" was the headline on the Washington Post editorial responding to Secretary of State Colin Powell's UN presentation making the case for war on Iraq. That was ten years ago this week; we'll talk with author and activist Norman Solomon, co-founder of RootsAction.org about how much difference there is between then and now.
Also on the show: Reading the eulogies for late New York City mayor Ed Koch, you'd think he was a universally loved figure. But for the not so adoring, Koch is remembered as an antagonist of ethnic minorities who presided over massive corruption and failed to adequately confront the emerging HIV/AIDS pandemic. We'll explore how Koch dealt with the pandemic with Nation editor Richard Kim.
New tally still lower than other estimates
After a FAIR Action Alert (12/2/11), the CBS Evening News has changed its count of civilian deaths--citing a new figure that is roughly twice their original count. On December 1 the CBS Evening News reported: It is estimated that more than 50,000 Iraqi civilians were killed in the war. As FAIR pointed out, this was totally inadequate--even the source for the network's claim (iCasualties.org) warned that this was not a comprehensive count. On December 12, CBS anchor Scott Pelley closed a segment about "how life has changed inside Iraq" with this: We looked into the human toll of the Iraq […]
Rewriting Iraq War history
A December 1 CBS Evening News report about the Iraq War managed to mislead viewers about the start of the war and severely diminish the loss of civilian lives. Reporting on the handover of the U.S. military headquarters to Iraqi forces, anchor Scott Pelley announced: What began in 2003 as an effort to overthrow Saddam Hussein became a vicious religious war, pitting Iraqi against Iraqi--with the U.S. caught in the middle. Of course, the United States invaded Iraq with the stated aim of disarming Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, which did not exist. ("The opening stages of the disarmament of […]
Protesters fight for what U.S. media say they already have
The U.S.-based women’s rights group MADRE (6/10/11) reported that members of the Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq—its partner organization in Baghdad—and other protesters were brutally beaten and sexually assaulted in Baghdad’s Tahrir Square on June 10 by government-sponsored mobs. What were they demonstrating for that so threatened Iraq’s government? Democracy. “For months, young women have been demonstrating for democracy in Tahrir Square, joining thousands of others who believe in a vision of an Iraq that is democratic and rooted in human rights,” OWFI director Yanar Mohammed told MADRE. “But instead of being heard, they have been viciously attacked in […]
Download MP3 This week on CounterSpin: One war is ending, while the other is the subject of a major PR blitz. Right on schedule, we're told, Operation Iraqi Freedom is winding down, with live TV coverage relaying the images of the final U.S. combat brigades leaving the country. The caveats to the story of the "end" of the war are abundant—tens of thousands of troops and private contractors remain, and some are already suggesting they'll be there longer than we've been told. So how does a war that isn't really ending actually end? Hannah Gurman wrote about the Orwellian state […]
Download MP3 This week on CounterSpin: A recent NBC-Wall Street Journal poll showed 74 percent of Americans believed not enough had been done to regulate the banking industry. But is the legislation the Senate is now considering anything like what those people had in mind? We’ll get an update on financial reform from Mary Bottari, director of the Real Economy Project at the Center for Media & Democracy. Also on CounterSpin today: Parliamentary elections in Iraq are leading to some mixed messages in the corporate press—"Victory At Last" declares the cover of Newsweek, while newspaper accounts hint, or even suggest, […]
As the world marks the sixth anniversary of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, corporate media's most prominent journalism critic is wondering if Barack Obama's Iraq policy isn't being sufficiently scrutinized. As Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz asked recently on his CNN program (3/15/09): "What about the previous president? I mean, he famously landed on that aircraft carrier, declared 'Mission Accomplished,' and we're still there. Could journalists be falling into the same trap of taking a president's word about Iraq at face value?" It's a good question to ask-- but is Kurtz really the best person to ask it? In […]