My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


How The New York Times Distorts Even Its Own 'News'

Here's the title of the article: Strife Foreseen in Iraq Exit, But Experts Split On Degree

Maybe all the dire consequences everybody's been predicting are overblown; maybe there's a chance that Iraq won't tear itself to pieces in the wake of our withdrawal. Let's see what the experts say.

Here's the quotes from experts who think the strife will be less-than-horrific:

“Everybody predicts chaos: I don’t predict chaos,” he said. “It goes up for a short period and it is not nearly as intense as everybody is predicting.”

And . . .

“There is risk, but I think the greater risk is not putting pressure on the Iraqis, watching them say that time is not relevant,” he said.

And . . .

“I think the Sadr tide will rule the country,” . . . . “They are the majority and they have a good background, and that gives them a chance to take control. Once we take power, we will be merciful with Sunnis. Our way is to kill somebody only when we suspect he has a link to insurgents.”

So, there you have it: three "experts" who think that Iraq won't descend into genocidal mayhem after a rapid withdrawal of American troops.

Oh, wait a second . . . you want to know WHO the three experts are. The first quote is from John Murtha, a Democratic American Congressman who has been advocating immediate withdrawal for a year. The second quote is from Carl Levin, a Democratic American Senator. And the third quote is from an Iraqi named Muhammed Qasim Ali--a supporter of Muqtada al-Sadr.

There you have it: the experts who think Iraq will be fine are two KongressKritters and a follower of al-Sadr.

Pretty good company you keep, Messrs. Murtha and Levin.

But the real distortion is, of course, from the NYTimes. The title of this article is not in any way warrented based on just the "experts" who deviate. But then you hear some of the evidence of a belief that Iraq will be a bloodbath, and it makes the distortion that much more insidious.

About 64 percent of Baghdad residents who were polled in late February and early March said American forces should remain until security was restored, until the Iraqi government was stronger or until Iraqi forces could operate independently. . . .

“Pulling back to bases maybe makes sense,” said Mansour Abdul Mohsin Abboud, 66, a Shiite tribal sheik who lives in Najaf. “But leaving, withdrawing completely from Iraq, that means erasing Iraq from the map.” . . .

Many militias and terrorist groups are just waiting for the Americans to leave,” said Salim Abdullah, the spokesman for the Iraqi Accordance Front, . . .

“Projecting our hopes onto them does not correspond to anything we know about the way Iraqi politics has worked so far,” said Steven N. Simon, an aide on the National Security Council during the Clinton administration . . .

By the way, notice that these quotes are actually from either Iraqis or from actual experts--not politicians.

The NYTimes should be ashamed of itself, or of, at least, its headline writers.

But then, recent history demonstrates a decided lack of shame in the ranks of the "professional journalism" class.

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