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CASMII Media Watch
Sanger and Risen over at the New York Times say that Iran's conversion of some of its stockpile of 20% enriched uranium to reactor fuel rods, thus precluding its use for weapons, may be some sort of calculated message to the West that Iran is willing to make a deal.
Never mind that Iran has been saying, quite overtly and as loudly as it can, that it is willing to cease 20% enrichment. Ahmadinejad himself went before the UN General Assembly and made this offer. In fact Iran had announced its intentions to make the fuel too. ››read more
USA Today cautioned recently that “War with Iran won’t be a quick affair.” A Pittsburgh newspaper plaintively wonders whether “War with Iran” is a “Necessity or Folly.” Talk of war is in the air. What many in this country don’t realize is that the U.S. is already engaged in a war with Iran. We just don’t hear about it. The name of the war that is already underway is “sanctions.” ››read more
The diagram leaked to the Associated Press this week is nothing more than either shoddy sources or shoddy science. In either case, the world can keep calm and carry on. ››read more
Just as with Iraq, the western media blindly trumpets whatever is shoveled to them about Iran, keeping fear levels sky-high to justify crippling sanctions and preparing the ground for war. ››read more
An Associated Press report by a journalist with a reputation for speculative and misleading coverage of Iran’s nuclear program claims that a shoddy Iranian diagram, leaked by “a country critical of Iran’s atomic program” suggests the Islamic Republic is working on a nuclear weapon. ››read more
On Wednesday night a ceasefire came into effect after a week of attacks on Gaza which left over 150 Palestinians dead (at least 40 of them children) and rocket fire into Israel which left 5 Israelis dead. Before the news of the ceasefire became the front-page headline on the BBC News website, the headline story for the entire day concerned the bus bombing in Tel Aviv, which injured 21 civilians. Luckily this attack did not result in civilian deaths, however it was still deemed more newsworthy than the 13 Palestinians in Gaza who were killed by air strikes that same day. The news coverage was another glaring example of the different value assigned to life by our media, depending on which side of the Gaza border it resides. ››read more
Remember when NeoCon Oliver Kamm wrote an article (behind paywall) in Rupert Murdoch's Times (of London) in which he dramatically "exposed" a document that supposedly proved that Iran had conducted tests with atomic bomb detonators (known as neutron triggers)? Naturally, it quotes David Albright too, claiming that this is "strong evidence" of continued Iranian nuclear weapons work. The Times even published an image of the document itself, quite helpfully. It is always great when a news outlet publishes the primary material which forms the basis of their reporting rather than simply passing off hearsay and rumor, often from anonymous sources, as fact. Congratulations, The Times and Oliver Kamm. You deserve a Medal of Journalism for that...
Except... ››read more
I've watched Barbara Slavin go from a good & knowledgable reporter on Iran to yet another shill, promoting "conventional wisdom" and her own biases under the guise of journalism. As sad as that was, her "Ask me anything" post on Reddit is a particularly low point, not just due to the many factual inaccuracies that she's promoting but the underlying bigotry that's on display. ››read more
The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), formed in 1961 during the Cold War, is a group of 120 states and 17 observer states not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc. The NAM held its opening 2012 session yesterday under the new chairmanship of Iran, which succeeded Egypt as the Chair.
Significantly, an Associated Press story in the Washington Post headlined, “Iran opens nonaligned summit with calls for nuclear arms ban”, reported that “Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi opened the gathering by noting commitment to a previous goal from the nonaligned group, known as NAM, to remove the world’s nuclear arsenals within 13 years. ‘We believe that the timetable for ultimate removal of nuclear weapons by 2025, which was proposed by NAM, will only be realized if we follow it up decisively,’ he told delegates.”
Having perused the much-lauded book by David Crist, I can't help but notice that it is not only light on citations but the material on Iran, and Iran's nuclear program in particular, is either flat wrong or merely a reinforcement of conventional wisdom, doused in a good bit of innuendo and credulously passed along as fact with barely an acknowledgement of contrary information. ››read more
Editor's note: David Crist is a US "government historian" and adviser to the United States Central Command. His recent book: THE TWILIGHT WAR The Secret History of America’s Thirty-Year Conflict With Iran has just been published.
The Guardian's headlines about Iran continue to deceive. As Mitt Romney talks to Israel about the idea of a military attack on Iran, the Guardian interpret this not as a threat, but rather quite positively, stating that he "woos Israel" by considering such an attack.
As marketers, PR specialists and psychologists have long known, people have a tendency to believe a claim is true, simply because it is repeated often. People confuse truth with familiarity. In fact, the less they pay attention to the claims, the more likely they are to believe them (This is why tv commercials are so repetitive - classic "low involvement learning") ››read more
A new ad released by the Mitt Romney campaign takes a quote from Barack Obama about the collectivism of progress and success so out of context as to be laughable. This morning's Up With Chris does an excellent job setting the record straight (watch here): ››read more
Con Coughlin of the Daily Telegraph reports that the Revolutionary Guard are overseeing a "huge expansion of Iran's nuclear program" -- and as proof he cites the NCRI which he fails to mention is one of the many pseudonyms of the MKO/MEK terrorists. ››read more
There are two major items of concern in the July 19, 2012 New York Times story "Hezbollah Is Blamed in Attack on Israeli Tourists in Bulgaria."
First, the article states
"The bombing comes at a time of heightened tensions over Iran’s nuclear program, which Tehran says is for peaceful purposes but Israel and the West say is a cover for developing weapons."
But it is not true that Israel and the West say that Iran is developing nuclear weapons. A number of top US and Israeli military and intelligence officials have publicly stated that they do not believe that Iranian leadership has decided to develop nuclear weapons. Furthermore, neither the most recent intelligence reports out of the US and Israel, nor recent reports from the International Atomic Energy Agency, say that Iran is trying to develop a nuclear weapon. ››read more
Late last week, CNN’s The Situation Room, starring Wolf Blitzer, reported on what Blitzer described as “an ominous new warning coming in from the Pentagon: Iran’s missiles are getting more accurate, apparently getting more deadly as well.” He then called on CNN’s Pentagon correspondent, Chris Lawrence (“What are you learning, Chris?”), and a truly brilliant line was unveiled: ››read more
The narrative that has been constructed by the Western mainstream media on Syria may seem to be self-evident from the scenes presented on television, but it is a narrative duplicitously promoted and coordinated so as to conceal and facilitate the regime-change project that is part of the war on Iran.
Editor's note: Aisling Byrne is projects coordinator with Conflicts Forum and is based in Beirut.
Yesterday morning, The Huffington Post published a post by Hossein Abedini, who was identified in the byline as a “Member of Parliament in exile of Iranian Resistance.” His extended HuffPost bio says that he “belongs to the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran” (NCRI). The NCRI is the political arm of the Mujahideen-e Khalq, (MeK), the Iranian dissident group (and longtime Saddam ally) that has been formally designated by the U.S. State Department since 1997 as a Terrorist organization,
The Guardian has run an article about Iran's statement that they will respond, in the Guardian's words, 'within minutes of an attack on the Islamic Republic'. The text of the article clarifies that the statement was about retaliation, however the headline given to the report is "Iran 'ready to fire missiles at US bases'", which falsely portrays Iran as the aggressor in the situation.
Excerpt: Headline: Iran 'ready to fire missiles at US bases'
Headline: Iran 'ready to fire missiles at US bases'
Much of the media analysis of Iran at the moment dwells on the punitive economic sanctions targeting Iran's economy. An additional round of more restrictive sanctions took effect at the beginning of this month, drawing renewed attention from the press.
The clear message from that media coverage is this: If Iran were to come clean about its nuclear program, they could get relief from the sanctions that are starting to wreak serious havoc on the country's economy.
That is one of the primary assumptions in the coverage of the Iran crisis. But is it correct? ››read more