"Blame Iran"

Filed in Gather Politics News Channel by on July 4, 2007 0 Comments

Michael Gordon (NYT co-writer with Judith Miller on hyping the Iraq War ) has another blame and hate-Iran piece in  NYT: U.S. Ties Iranians to Iraq Attack That Killed G.I.’s


This is the first paragraph of  original version of the article published in the New York Times:

Iranian operatives helped plan a January raid in Karbala in which five American soldiers were killed, an American military spokesman in Iraq said today.

This was  how the article ended :

But military officials say that there is such a long and systematic pattern of Quds Force activity in Iraq, as well as a 2005 confidential American protest to Iranian leaders regarding Iran’s alleged supply of road-side bombs, that senior Iranian leaders must be aware of the Quds Force role in Iraq.


“Our intelligence reveals that the senior leadership in Iran is aware of this activity,” he said. When he was asked if Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei could be unaware of the activity, General Bergner said “that would be hard to imagine.”

Gordon’s  NYT article was subsequently  edited substantially, as including several statements that cast  doubt on the military’s claims. None of these facts were included in the original version:

Previously, Iranian officials have said that the United States is fabricating evidence to back up its accusation that Iran is sending bombs and weapons into Iraq. Some critics have cast doubt on the American military statements about the penetrator bombs, saying the evidence linking them to Iran was circumstantial and inferential.


In remarks that were reported over the weekend, Iran’s defense minister, Mohammad Najar, denied American claims of Iran’s “military interference” in Iraq. “We have many times announced that we are ready to cooperate with the Iraqi government so to restore security and stability to that country,” Mr. Najar was quoted as saying in a July 1 report by the Iranian student news agency, ISNA. It did not make clear which remarks he was responding to.

The revised article also now refers to the accusations from the U.S. military as “assertions by the American military spokesman.” 

 Glen Greenwald notes,  “Though there are far more facts that ought to be reported … including the fact that such accusations have been denied not only by the Iranians, but also by the Iraqi government, various U.S. military officials and multiple foreign policy experts — the editorial changes to Gordon’s article are clearly improvements.”

http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2007/07/02/gordon/index.html .

Greenwald points out Gordon’s only source for this piece is a “military spokesman” Brig. Gen. Kevin J. Bergner. The There are no other sources or viewpoints present.  Gordon’s article is , in fact, a copy of the Camp Victory U.S. military press release. Greenwald doesn’t  write of the background of Brig. Gen. Kevin J. Bergner.  Who is Bergner?

Kevin J. Bergner was named February 3, 2006, by President George W. Bush as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Iraq. Brigadier General Bergner recently served as Deputy Director of Political-Military Affairs (Middle East) at the Department of Defense. He received his bachelor’s degree from Trinity University and his master’s degree from City University of New York. (sourcewatch)

Berger left the White House and became spokesman for the U.S. military in Iraq just three weeks ago. It is likely that Bergner’s statement, which Gordon stenographed  without comment  originated in the Washington .   This blame-Iran propaganda, the accusation of direct, official Iranian military intervention in Iraq, is originating from within the Bush administration. It is fed through a “military spokesman” who just left the White House to Michael Gorden who’s editors originally  published  it unfiltered in the New York Times, without citing any other sources or commentary.

Given the schemes we know from the start of the Iraq war disinformation campaign, the next step is obvious. Someone from Bush’s administration will appear on television and will cite and confirm Gordon’s New York Times reporting as proof for Iran’s “bad intent”.

In the lead-up to the Iraq War, Michael Gordon of The New York Times wrote one of the most discredited, journalistically irresponsible, and damaging articles of the last decade — a September 8, 2002, front-page article, co-authored with Judy Miller, which, in the first sentence, “reported” that “Iraq has stepped up its quest for nuclear weapons and has embarked on a worldwide hunt for materials to make an atomic bomb, Bush administration officials said today.” The article continued: “In the last 14 months, Iraq has sought to buy thousands of specially designed aluminum tubes.” On the day that article was published, Dick Cheney appeared on Meet the Press and he specifically cited Gordon and Miller’s article as “evidence” that Saddam was pursuing nuclear weapons.

 CNN ran much  the same story Michael Gorden filed   yesterday.  CNN’s Michael Ware  in Baghdad and the studio anchors expressed little doubt that all they have been told is “true.” According to CNN a “Lebanese Hizbullah fighter” got caught in Iraq and “did confess in interrogations .” AP filed a similar version, repeating Bergner’s  Camp Victory press briefing.

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