Sunday, November 06, 2005

Iraq is just like Vietnam!

As far as frauds spreading lies about their service goes it's exactly the same. Michele Malkin has this story today about a former Marine who told numerous demonstrable lies to the press:

For more than a year, former Marine Staff Sgt. Jimmy Massey has been telling anybody who will listen about the atrocities that he and other Marines committed in Iraq.

In scores of newspaper, magazine and broadcast stories, at a Canadian immigration hearing and in numerous speeches across the country, Massey has told how he and other Marines recklessly, sometimes intentionally, killed dozens of innocent Iraqi civilians.

Among his claims:

Marines fired on and killed peaceful Iraqi protesters.

Americans shot a 4-year-old Iraqi girl in the head.

A tractor-trailer was filled with the bodies of civilian men, women and children killed by American artillery.

Massey's claims have gained him celebrity. Last month, Massey's book, "Kill, Kill, Kill," was released in France.

News organizations worldwide published or broadcast Massey's claims without any corroboration and in most cases without investigation.

Outside of the Marines, almost no one has seriously questioned whether Massey, a 12-year veteran who was honorably discharged, was telling the truth.

He wasn't.

Each of his claims is either demonstrably false or exaggerated - according to his fellow Marines, Massey's own admissions, and the five journalists who were embedded with Massey's unit, including a reporter and photographer from the Post-Dispatch and reporters from The Associated Press and The Wall Street
Journal.


Does this sound familiar? How about the lies John Kerry told on the floor of the U.S. Senate? Or how about the lies his friends in the Winter Soldier meetings told?
Why has no supposedly skeptical mainstream news agency seriously questioned this mans spurious charges until now?


Kudos to Ron Harris of the Saint Louis Post Dispatch for uncovering this fraud. More on this at Narcissitic views, and Flopping Aces.

The follow up story by Mr. Harris Why did the press swallow Massey's stories? is fantastic! read the whole thing now.

What I found particularly telling was a comment by Rex Smith, editor of the Albany (N.Y.) Times Union:

Mr Smith said he thought the newspaper's story about Massey could have "benefited from some additional reporting." But he didn't necessarily see anything particularly at odds with standard journalism practices You could take any day's newspaper and probably pick out a half dozen or more stories that ought to be subjected to a more rigorous truth test," he said.

"Yes, it would have been much better if we had the other side. But all I'm saying is that this is unfortunately something that happens

now isn't that exaclty what so many folks outside the mainstream press have been saying for years now?

Sorry to break it to you folks, your hometown newspaper, local news, and network news anchors are pretty poor when it comes to reporting the truth.

Other quotables from the story include:




That Massey wasn't telling the truth should have become obvious the more he told his stories, said Phillip Dixon, former managing editor of The Philadelphia Inquirer and currently chairman of the Howard University Department of Journalism.

Dixon examined dozens of newspaper articles in which Massey told of the atrocities that Marines allegedly committed in Iraq.

"He couldn't keep his story straight," said Dixon, who has also been an editor at The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times. "First it was a 4-year-old girl with a bullet hole in her head, then it was a 6-year-old girl."

Editors at some papers look back at the Massey articles and are surprised that they ran them without examining whether the claims were true or without ever asking the Marine Corps about them.

"I'm looking at the story and going, 'Why, why would we have run this without getting another side of the story?'" said Lois Wilson, managing editor of the Star Gazette in Elmira, N.Y.

David Holwerk, editorial page editor for The Sacramento Bee, said he thought the newspaper handled its story, a question and answer interview with Massey, poorly.

"I feel fairly confident that we did not subject this to the rigorous scrutiny that we should have or to which we would subject it today," he said.


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