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February 09, 2005

Of course the US Killed Journalists

There's a small brouhaha (see also here, here, and here) over the fact that, at the World Economic Forum, CNN's chief news executive, Eason Jordan, said that the US military had killed journalists in Iraq. What's the controversy? That Eason Jordan said an inconvenient truth?

As Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting recounted back in April 2003:

On April 8...U.S. military forces launched what appeared to be deliberate attacks on independent journalists covering the war, killing three and injuring four others. In one incident, a U.S. tank fired an explosive shell at the Palestine Hotel, where most non-embedded international reporters in Baghdad are based...Earlier in the day, the U.S. launched separate but near-simultaneous attacks on the Baghdad offices of Al Jazeera and Abu Dhabi TV, two Arabic-language news networks...
Journalist organizations accused the US of deliberatley targetting journalists for murder:
International journalists and press freedom groups condemned the U.S. attacks on the press corps in Baghdad. "We can only conclude that the U.S. Army deliberately and without warning targeted journalists," Reporters Without Borders declared (4/8/03). "We believe these attacks violate the Geneva Conventions," wrote the Committee to Protect Journalists in a letter to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld (4/8/03)...
Eason Jordan didn't even make the clear accusation that the journalists killed were deliberately murdered by the US military, but merely didn't want these specific assaults on journalists dismissed with the phrase "collateral damage." But this attack on Jordan is part of the general patriot correctness that requires we ignore reality and not even discuss the possibility that the military would commit an evil act. The standard seems to be that, unless you have picture proof as with the torture in Abu Ghraib, you can't even mention the idea.

Posted by Nathan at February 9, 2005 06:59 AM