Wednesday, July 26, 2006

What's wrong with the news?

CNN's Nic Robertson ran a story last week from the ravaged streets of Lebanon. He was being directed by a Hezbollah terrorist propaganda artist and told him exactly where he could go and what he could see. The Hezbollah thug repeated over and over "shoot this" and "look at this" and "does this look like a military building?" The whole shoot consisted of Nic admitting that it appeared Israelis had attacked a purely civilian neighborhood.

Now Nic has come out and said that his segments was completely controlled by Hezbollah:

Hezbollah has “very, very sophisticated and slick media operations,” that the terrorist group “had control of the situation. They designated the places that we went to, and we certainly didn't have time to go into the houses or lift up the rubble to see what was underneath,” and he even contradicted Hezbollah’s self-serving spin: “There's no doubt that the [Israeli] bombs there are hitting Hezbollah facilities.”

Even though Nic painfully admitted what really happened, the damage has been done. No one watches Reliable Sources on CNN to see that Nic's original segment was compromised. And the lies go on.

Also, what kind of journalist allows himself to be used for propaganda purposes? He could have filmed the footage, and broadcast to CNN later - not right away when he was forced to report Hezbollah propaganda and lies. How can these people still be employed, and how can they live with the terrible work they do?

Update: Surprisingly, CNN's Anderson Cooper blasted through Hezbollah's propaganda wall in his report from inside Beirut. He described in detail how Hezbollah controlled what parts of the city were filmed. He also described how the areas attacked were civilian areas, but nevertheless were where Hezbollah works from. He included descriptions of Israeli leaflets warning civilians to leave certain areas before an attack came.

His most brazen effort to thwart Hezbollah propaganda was his description of "dummy" ambulances, staged by Hezbollah to race through the streets of Beirut at controlled interviews so the press would photograph them. Amazing. Props to Cooper for not being a media chump.

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