Journalists Who Got Iraq Wrong 10 Years Ago and Syria Wrong Now Should Be Sacked
By Wayne Madsen
Global Research, March 25, 2013
Strategic Culture Foundation 23 March 2013
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Although Cable News Network (CNN) no longer reports news but blatant propaganda and worthless reports on insignificant celebrities, it and other media operations should not be permitted to engage in the same war-mongering today that they fostered ten years ago.

On the very day that America was reflecting on the preposterous reasons it attacked and occupied Iraq ten years ago – March 20, 2003 – CNN and other broadcasters were hyping a phony story about Syria using WMDs – weapons of mass destruction – against civilians. Ten years ago, Saddam Hussein was used as an international bogeyman for his possession of WMDs. However, the claims of Iraqi WMDs were based on false and forged intelligence. And the claims that Bashar al-Assad’s government is using chemical weapons are just as fallacious…

CNN’s neo-Conservative main stay Wolf Blitzer, who once served as a mouthpiece for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), an unregistered foreign agency of the Israeli government operating as a pressure group on the U.S. government, interviewed Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein of California and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers of Michigan on the «breaking news» that Syria was using chemical weapons against its own population. Blitzer, of course, engaged in the very same theatrical propaganda and war mongering over Saddam’s alleged possession of mass destruction.

Blitzer, who would never be found issuing forth such hyperbolic announcements about Israel’s possession of 400 tactical and city-busting nuclear weapons, as well as its germ and chemical warfare agents, engages in the very same faux journalism today as he practiced in the lead up to the invasion of Iraq. Simply stated, Blitzer and his ilk at Fox News and at various other media entities in Washington, New York, London, and other cities are not journalists. They are ciphers for vested interests that profit from war and Americans dying for patently Israeli causes.

It is clear that the corrupted media is following the same playbook for Syria as it used in reporting on Iraq. Ten years to the day that Americans and people around the world were warned about the «existential threat» from Saddam Hussein’s WMDs, the wire services and other media showed pictures of civilians outside of Aleppo who were said to have been injured from a chlorine gas attack launched by Syrian forces. The source was the Rupert Murdoch-owned Fox News. It is astounding that after revelations about the unprofessional actions of Murdoch’s newspapers in London hacking into private cell phone voice mail accounts, anyone would give credence to any of his trash publications, which now include The Wall Street Journal and The Times of London.

There were video reports that 16 people in the village of Khan al-Assal, outside of Aleppo, were killed with another 86 wounded. However, since the beginning of the Syrian conflict bogus videos and photographs have been offered successfully to a begging news media, eager for scenes of blood and mayhem. Moreover, the victims of the attack were said to be largely Syrian army regulars and members of pro-Assad militias.

Interestingly, the White House denied any knowledge of any chemical attack. However, there were more legitimate reports that the chlorine gas attack was launched by CIA- and NATO-supported Syrian rebels. Some governments cited the danger of Syria’s arsenal of chemical weapons falling into the hands of the pro-Al Qaeda al-Nusra Front, which is aided financially and logistically by the governments of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates, as well as the self-proclaimed Emirate of Cyrenaica in eastern Libya, over which the NATO-installed government in Tripoli has little to no control.

Syria’s rebels are carbon copies of the motley crew of Iraqi expatriates hauled out of their penthouse apartments and suburban homes in the United States and Britain to lead the interim Iraqi government appointed by a U.S. viceroy, Paul “Jerry” Bremer, a protégé of the all-time American war criminal Henry Kissinger. Iraq’s rebel movement had its feather merchant in the personage of Ahmad Chalabi, the international fraudster who was placed in charge of the CIA-created Iraqi National Congress. The Syrian National Coalition “elected” as the prime minister of the Syrian government-in-exile Ghassan Hitto, a U.S. citizen from Texas who has worked for various information technology companies – read that as companies with contracts for the U.S. military-intelligence complex – and who has been involved with various Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated causes linked to the government of Qatar. Hitto, an ethnic Syrian Kurd, demanded that Syria’s United Nations seat be handed over to the Syrian rebels. Like the exiled Chalabi with most Iraqis, most people inside Syria had never heard of Hitto before he became one of Uncle Sam’s new “nephews” in the Middle East.

Another member of the Syrian opposition is long-time anti-Assad figure Farid “Frank” Ghadry, a Syrian-American entrepreneur who has, like Hitto, been a part of the U.S. military-intelligence complex, having worked for the contractor EG&G Intertech Inc. before starting his own firm, International TechGroup Inc. Ghadry is a darling of the same neo-con power structure in Washington that promoted Chalabi and his cronies. Ghadry has appeared before the Knesset in Israel and has penned such pro-Israeli pieces as “Israel Builds for Nobel Prizes, Arabs Build for Suicide Bombers.” While such polemics play well to the six-figure salaried officials of Israeli-financed non-profit think tanks in Washington and suburban Virginia and Maryland, they have no impact and generate hostility inside countries like Syria, Iraq, or occupied Palestine.

Not one of the media «chatterers» who advanced the false notion of Iraq’s WMDs has paid for their professional misconduct. Instead, they have been left to promote further false stories that provided journalistic cover for American intervention in Libya to overthrow Muammar Qaddafi and NATO’s force infusion into Mali’s inter-ethnic and civilian-military conflicts.

Among the reporters who questioned the Bush administration’s bone-headed decision to invade and occupy Iraq based on non-existent intelligence were Knight-Ridder’s Jonathan Landay and Warren Strobel. The reporters’ accounts of the fake intelligence being offered up by the Bush-Cheney neo-cons were largely ignored by the press because similar information had not appeared in either The New York Times or The Washington Post. Both “newspapers of record” had embedded within their reporting staffs and editorial ranks individuals who were more loyal to the whims of the Bush administration than to the canons of journalism or to their readership. Unfortunately, it is the likes of Wolf Blitzer and total light-weights of puffery like Anderson Cooper (the son of billionaire heiress Gloria Vanderbilt), Charles Krauthammer, William Kristol, Judith Miller, and others who continue to appear on the television news programs to advance neo-con agendas in the Middle East and other regions of the world, including Venezuela, China, and Pakistan.

Ten years later, the public is still being subjected to the same sort of blatant propaganda and falsehoods about Syria. Working with information operations military and intelligence personnel that cooked up the Iraq WMD lies, these same neo-conservative gnomes and wizards now conjure up their next deadly brew of disinformation and propaganda designed to ensure a future American and NATO takeover of Syria, Yemen, Mali, Sudan, Algeria, and beyond.

Of course, the neo-con journalists can argue the point that they were just reporting what the actual war criminals, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Douglas Feith, and other officials were claiming. The Nazis also had their propagandists and the Nuremburg War Crimes Tribunal rejected their plea that they were «just following orders».

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