Tuesday, March 15, 2005

"Well ma'am, I guess I'm just a "WHAT are you saying?" guy, in a "WHO's saying it?" world..."

Headlines for March 15, 2005

Democracy Now!
War and Peace Report


White House Defends Use of Video News Releases

In news from Washington, the White House is defending its practice of distributing government-funded video news releases to TV stations with the hopes that the stations will air the segments as real news. On Sunday the New York Times featured an extensive front-page investigation detailing the extent that pre-packaged news releases - produced by the federal government - are being used by television stations all across the country. The Times reported that at least 20 federal agencies - including the Defense Department and the Census Bureau - have distributed hundreds of television news segments in the past four years. Many were then broadcast on local stations without crediting the government as the source of the information. On Monday White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan claimed that the videos are appropriate as long as they are a factual. Last month the General Accounting Office however ruled that the videos violate laws that ban covert propaganda. But the Bush administration is ordering all agencies to disregard the GAO's directive.

(...)

Judicial Watch Sues Pentagon Over PR Project

In related news, Judicial Watch has sued the Pentagon for hiring the public relations firm the Rendon Group to develop an internet site aimed at school children. The website -- called Empower Peace -- was designed to look like it was part of a grassroots peace movement. The website featured interactive web broadcasts between New York and Jordan, as well as Boston and Bahrain, and interaction with school age children of Islamic countries.

(...)

"Jesus telling George to lie? That's un-possible!!!"

(...)

SOURCE - http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=05/03/15/1453250

...

Epilogue: "Do You Support The Troops?"

(...)

"The Pentagon has estimated that since the start of the current conflict in Iraq, more than 5,500 U.S. military personnel have deserted..."

"The Pentagon has estimated that since the start of the current conflict in Iraq, more than 5,500 U.S. military personnel have deserted, and yet we know the stories of only a unique handful, all whom have publicly stated their opposition to the war in Iraq, and some of whom have fled to Canada. The Vietnam war casts a long shadow, distorting our image of the deserter; four soldiers have gone over the Canadian border, looking for the safe haven of the Vietnam years, which no longer exists: there are no open arms for such refugees and almost no possibility of obtaining legal status..."

(...)

SOURCE - http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=05/03/15/1453256

(...)

Creepilogue: "What Really Happened Today?"

(...)

"What is interesting about this whole process is that all of the flights of wounded into the United States are scheduled to land at night. The wounded are arriving under the cover of darkness..."

"What is interesting about this whole process is that all of the flights of wounded into the United States are scheduled to land at night. The wounded are arriving under the cover of darkness. Also, at least at the two hospitals, Walter Reed Army Medical Center and Bethesda Naval Medical Center, photographers and the press are barred from seeing, watching, or taking photos of the wounded arriving. So, if you take those two facts, the fact that the wounded are only arriving at night at Andrews Air Force Base, and you take the fact that we in the press are not allowed to see them when they go to the two main hospitals here, we have a situation where we're several years into the war now, and we've seen essentially no reporting or no images of these wounded arriving; and to give you just a idea of the scope of this situation, if you take the wounded soldiers and then you add in the number of hurt soldiers that the Pentagon doesn't generally report (in other words, soldiers that are hurt in vehicle accidents and so on) we have 25,000 soldiers who have been flown out of the battlefields, mostly from Iraq, some from Afghanistan. Most of those come back to the United States — 25,000 — and images or reporting on them arriving in the United States is almost unheard of."

(...)

SOURCE - http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=05/03/15/1454212

(...)

Crazilogue: "Behold: Bush Bushido"

(...)

Bush Insists Iraq Coalition Not Crumbling
By Steve Holland

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Bush (news - web sites) insisted on Wednesday the U.S.-led coalition in Iraq (news - web sites) was not crumbling and he shrugged off Italy's decision to begin pulling troops from Iraq by September.

"Quite to the contrary," Bush said when asked if the coalition was falling apart. "I think the coalition has been buoyed by the courage of the Iraqi people."

(...)

"And... it's over Johnny! It's over!"

(...)

SOURCE - http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/nm/20050316/pl_nm/mideast_bush_dc

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