About Time

Apparently the DOD read al-Qaeda’s proposal and realized that they have missed the boat. They suddenly realized that they can’t just give a story to the mainstream press and expect it to be reported accurately.

They have launched a website U.S. Department of Defense Update that follows up and tries to correct the misinformation that is published by the news media.

Here is one of the latest.

The New York Times on “Real Terrorists”

A “lighthearted” matter?

Oct. 27, 2006 —This week’s exchange with the New York Times isn’t the first time the Department of Defense has expressed concern about inaccuracies in a Times editorial. A September 7 editorial (“A Sudden Sense of Urgency”) asserted that, with the transfer of 14 high-value terrorist suspects to Cuba, “President Bush finally has some real terrorists in Guantánamo Bay.” In fact, those held prior to the transfer included personal bodyguards of Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda recruiters, trainers, and facilitators. Another individual held at Guantánamo was Mohamed al-Kahtani, believed to be the intended 20th hijacker on September 11th.

The Times declined to issue a correction, noting that “the phrase in question was meant to be somewhat lighthearted in tone and not literal.”

What they meant was “it wasn’t meant to be taken literally unless you agree with us”.

Check out the entire exchange.

They had previous complained about an error in an editorial about Secretary Rumsfeld and troop levels. They refused to correct it and also refused to print a letter to the editor rebutting it.

They are very serious about the freedom of the press at the New York Times. What that means is that they are free to misreport and mischaracterize whatever they please and are also free to deny anyone a chance to rebut them in their newspaper. Because as Mr. Keller said when they broke the NSA wiretap story, they are the final arbiters of what will and will not be reported. If other people were qualified to make that judgment then they would have eastside luxury apartments and estates in The Hamptons too. The fact that they don’t is telling.

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