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June 28, 2008


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You said: "Now, why do you suppose all the other options which would amount to a peaceful resolution of the standoff whilst respecting Iran's absolute and inalienable sovereign right to nuclear enrichment, are being so deliberately ignored?"

I'm confused about how the UN works, because I didn't get into politics until after I was "branded" by Robins Air Force Base as someone to be avoided. That's when I started digging into who is who in politics, and quite frankly, I don't trust the American Judicial System nor the politicians any more. I've learned how they are interlinked with each other, and how the corporations are dictating how America will be run. It's not "we the people of the United States of America"....

So, with that said, and based on my research because of being in litigation against a powerful corporation that has world-wide offices, I'm concerned that all this war stuff has nothing to do with peace at all. It has to do with profiting from war. Contractors all over the world (and we can't just put the blame on American contractors) are profiting from war. I believe they don't want peace because with peace, they won't be needed to build war related software, hardware, ships, planes, etc.

I can clearly understand how the NY Times would be used as propaganda. Take a look at who is a shareholder in the media. These shareholders are powerful companies. I, unfortunately, discovered why the defendants in my case were being protected by the media. I blogged about it here: http://facingthesharks.com/2008/09/03/i-keep-digging-knight-ridder/

Alireza, I think perhaps you may be naive about the media. It is not independent and does not exist to "inform" us of the news. It exists to get us to "buy into" whatever it is they want us to believe.

What bothers me is that America can be a sovereign nation but no one else can be? If we can create nukes, why can't others? I've asked myself that many times. The best answer can only come from what will "pamper" my own fears. That is...we don't strap on bombs to ourselves then go blow other people up. So, we would be more "responsible" to manage nukes, whereas, another country wouldn't have the same set of human life values and wouldn't care about laws and treaties. They wouldn't consider human life and would be neglegent with nukes.

Then I remember what nation I live in. America has murdered millions of babies for profit.

And you know what my conclusion is? The whole world is irrisponsible and none of us should have nukes.

Then I remember what the book of Revelation says, and I know...we already know how all of this ends.

I think each nation is building up their own defense because they're afraid of other nations. America is no different. The people that want peace are "we the people" but we don't get a say in it. The corporations and bankers around the world want to profit and if means shedding the blood of the people around the world, they will do whatever it takes to have power and profit.

There isn't a nation of people out there that I would wish war on. We're all on this planet together and my blood is the same color as every one else. I wish "the powers that be" would quit shedding it.

I do not believe this

I have just read a couple of past NY Times articles on roadside bombs and stuff claimed to be "supplied by Iran to militias in Iraq" and I can see more clearly why you are concerned.
I have also read "Approaching Iran Intelligence With Intelligent Skepticism" by the paper's public editor which tries to assuage such concerns.
I think you are quite right in pointing out the conjectures and the right-out lies.
But I am still willing to give the paper and its staff the benefit of the doubt.
Thank you.

I don’t get this. You say the New York Times is “serving its function as a government propaganda mouthpiece” to prepare for war as I read it.
Now maybe I am too naive to see the real NY Times conspiracy here, but I clearly remember the New York Times endorsing John Kerry for President back in 2004. To me this means that the editors of the paper do not wholly agree with the policies of the Bush Administration, preemptive action being one of them. Therefore to label the paper as the “mouthpiece” of the US government appears a little far out.
I also remember that in addition to examining allegations of “[US] official gullibility and hype” in the build-up to the war on Iraq, the paper reviewed its own record in reporting of events that led to war and admitted there had been cases of what I call neglect and promised to “continue aggressive reporting aimed at setting the record straight.” To me, this reads fair journalism.
There have also been numerous cases in the 8 years of incumbent US Administration where the New York Times exposed stuff that the Administration could not possibly have wanted revealed. The exposure of eavesdropping on Americans for links to terrorism and Joseph C. Wilson arguing that in one State of the Union Address, President Bush misrepresented intelligence leading up to the invasion and thus misleadingly suggested that the Iraqi regime sought uranium to manufacture nuclear weapons are two such cases. I am sure there have been more, but I don’t remember right now.
What I do remember is New York Times running an ad in which Sean Penn (and other Hollywood stars?, I couldn’t find the exact link to this one) stated opposition to war and condemned the President for his simplistic view of world issues. I don’t see why the US Government’s “mouthpiece” would print an ad that is clearly anti-US Government.
Finally, at least two of the NY Times articles you have criticized for misrepresenting facts on Iran were authored by Elaine Sciolino whose book on Iran, Persian Mirrors, The Elusive Face of Iran, is one of the most honest reflections of life in Iran that I have come across. Again I just don’t see why an author whose book on Iran has anti-intervention undertones would deliberately produce articles that pave the way for military intervention.
I have never read the entire paper and I am no expert in media manipulation, but from my occasional encounters with the Times I have found it to be one of the most impartial news sites around.
One last note: Maureen Dowd, Thomas Freedman and Nicholas D. Kristof have two things in common: all three are NY Times columnists and they are no fans of the Bush Administration.
It just does not add up.

[Cyrus Responds: Yes. Precisely. They don't add up, which perhaps suggests inteference from another source. You're right that Sciolino usually did a fine job but her pieces on the IAEA reports are unquestionably one-sided and unfair. Instead of pretending they're not or making excuses for her, we should ask why they're so one-sided and unfair. There's simply no way to read her last article and say it was even attempting to be fair. She completely left out exculpatory facts and exaggerated or misrepresented inculpatory claims. That's not by accident - it was deliberate, and it wasn't the first time.

The fact that the paper came out with a weak apology for its Iraq coverage hasn't prevented it from doing the same thing with respect to Iran. So, again, we have to ask why.
Though the New York Times editorial board admitted rather grudgingly to having inadvertently promoted the Bush administration's propaganda line on Iraq, the newspaper is apparently capable of simultaneously condemning the Bush administration while promoting a similar propaganda line against Iran. As media scholar Norman Solomon observed:

[A] distinct rhythm of drumming for a war dance is audible in the present. Consider a statement that appeared a couple of inches under the close of the New York Times editorial declaring on Saturday that "there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq." In an editorial just below, the Times flatly stated conjecture as fact: "Iran has a nuclear weapons program."
(SEE http://www.antiwar.com/solomon/?articleid=7858 )

Similarly, the fact that the NY Times occasionally actually does its job right and reports on something the gov't wants hidden also the raises the question of why, for example, their Public Editor insists on disingeniously defending the articles of people like Gordon which essentially parrots "anonymous government sources" on alleged "EFPs from Iran" whilst ignoring contrary facts.

Media scholars will tell you that while the mainstream media can do their function when it comes to domestic affairs, but when it comes to foreign affairs they are essentially captives of the administration elites and will act as mouthpieces. They may endorse Kerry over Bush, but they will play along with the WMDs in Iraq mythology too. Note that according to these scholars, the media turned against the US involvment in VietNam only after elite opinion in the US turned against it, for example.

But in any case, the fact that the NY Times sometimes does things right doesn't distract from the times that doesn't. This doesn't mean that the government directly or overtly interferes with the reporters - though sometimes they do - it is enough to have reporters who have a habit of deference.

Anyway, as a consumer of news, its not my job to figure out WHY the New York Times screws up - it is my job to critically read what they say and decided for myself whether it is accurate or reliable on a case-by-case basis, that's all.]

thank u

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