Inflammatory lies from the BBC

Inflammatory lies from the BBC
: BBC Foreign Editor John Simpson has gone over the edge of credibility and decency as he essentially accuses the U.S. military of targeting and murdering non-embedded journalists.

BBC world affairs editor John Simpson has called on the US government to investigate why more journalists were killed by American soldiers than by any other means during the Iraq war.

Simpson blamed the deaths of many of the journalists – what he called “the ultimate act of censorship” – on the system of embedding, which meant that journalists operating independently of US and British troops became “potential targets”.

I was about to start screaming about taking away Simpson’s journalism stripes and drumming him out of the corps.

But then I came to a buried paragraph in the Guardian report:

American soldiers did not kill journalists on purpose, said Simpson, but out of “a mixture of blind panic, inadequate street training, and complete and utter ignorance”.

I’d say the Guardian is just as at fault for this bit of inflammatory accusation as Simpson, for that last bit should have been at least alluded to in the first three paragraphs. Altogether, it’s a festival of anti-Americanism and it’s shoddy journalism. [via IWantMedia]

  • What exactly is anti-Americanism?

  • Mike G

    The belief that everything the United States does is bad, and everything bad is the doing of the United States. For example, a dictator murders his people for 20 years, and when the electrical grid doesn’t work perfectly 5 minutes after a war ends, that’s the fault of the United States and proof of its malign intentions. (That the murders as well as the electricity have stopped is a minor detail not to be mentioned in polite– ie, European, non-cowboy– company.)
    See also Semitism, anti-.
    Anyway, to get back to why I started to make a comment: OF COURSE more journalists were killed by American soldiers than by any other cause. Nothing else happened during the war. Do you expect journalists to be killed as a result of Saddam’s army deserting? I suppose they could have been killed by falling statues, but that’s about it.

  • Mr. PR

    I fail to see how the deaths of journalists can be attributed in any way to the system of embedding.
    If media embedding had not existed–that is, if ALL journalists on the battlefield were operating independently–would the result have been fewer or no media casualties?

  • In Gulf War I, the press complained that they couldn’t get anywhere near the story and could only report what the military wanted them to know. I didn’t much care for that myself (just as during the Clinton Administration, they were kept miles away from the Branch Davidian compound after the initial disastrous ATF raid).
    And lest we forget, Ernie Pyle was an “embedded journalist”–killed in WWII.

  • thanks for the info

  • Iranian

    here, Iran TVs use BBC as a source of anti-american news! but persian section of BBC site is not anti-american even pro-american! I guess thats becuase Iran people dont read anti-american news and articles…

  • And might the following phrase:
    … and complete and utter ignorance”…
    just as well be applied to most journalists?!

  • Andy Freeman

    > American soldiers did not kill journalists on purpose, said Simpson, but out of “a mixture of blind panic, inadequate street training, and complete and utter ignorance”.
    I wonder what “inadequate street training” and “complete and utter ignorance” is supposed to mean.
    It’s pretty clear that American soldiers are quite competent at street fighting. What relevant ignorance do they have?
    Is it that they’re not practiced in the fine art of protecting foreigners wandering around battlefields and are ignorant of some special privs that should be accorded to jour-no-lists?

  • John Irving

    I think the “blind panic, inadequate street training, and complete and utter ignorance” is best applied to the journalists wandering around in a war zone thinking they’re surrounded by a holy glow of recognition and invulnerability.

  • H. Leigh

    Michael Kelly and David Bloom were killed by enemy fire as they traveled in the US convoy towards Baghdad.
    The journalists killed in the Palestine(sp?) Hotel were not “official” embeds. They chose to come into a war zone on their own…and, on top of that, to stand behind OUR enemies as they aimed at OUR troops from within the hotel.
    What is tha matter with the BBC?! Ethically challenged may entitle a person to welfare in some nations, but those BBC pens ARE mighty and dangerous weapons.

  • H.: Kelly and Bloom were not killed by enemy or friendly fire; Kelly died in an accident, Bloom of a blood clot.

  • H. Leigh

    Sorry, Jeff. I knew. I forgot. Dang. I’d chalk it up to post-war trauma from following DoD, CENTCOM and the troops – then following the daily post-Baghdad liberation press lies – even the Aussies threw a parade for their troops after our awesome victory, while OUR press gave us 24/7 negativity – Saddam Iraqi Info Min. propaganda videos, a DNC script written pre-war (, and smiling Clintons (“I loathe the military”)…while ignoring the good (“During Operation Desert Scorpion which lasted from June 15 to June 29, the 4th Infantry Division and the 1st Armored Division conducted multiple raids resulting in 1,330 individuals being detained. Confiscated weapons include 497 AK-47s, 235 hand grenades, 124 rocket-propelled grenades, 22 machine guns, 130 pistols and 100 rifles and 8,122 rounds of ammunition. The division also confiscated $9,463,000 in U.S. dollars, 1,557,000,000 in Iraqi Dinars, 1,071 bars of gold and 52 vehicles.”…while delighting our enemies by hyping each casualty (we lost 10 Americans to hostile actions – out of ~ 146,000 troops in a country the size of California – during this two week period which included other aggressive US ops besides this major military Operation Scorpion) – hurting the morale of our troops on the ground who wonder why their family and friends back home hear only the bad – (+ the troops and the Iraqi people hear the same ‘news’ – + Al Jazeera – in Iraq). OUR press has been pushing 24/7 negativity for two months – even as our troops were kicking enemy butt and doing good works – w/ the help of grateful Iraqis! – all across Iraq (our press to the troops: “Put some ice on it!”)…
    but that is no excuse for blaming the deaths of the honorable Michael Kelly and David Bloom on enemy fire. I knew. I forgot. I am sorry.

  • T. Hartin

    I can’t believe nobody spotted the obvious and enormous logical fallacy in his report. WHen he states that “more journalists were killed by American soldiers than by any other means during the Iraq war,” might this be because there were many many more American soldiers than any other allied soldiers fighting in Iraq? It would be very odd indeed if the minority of non-US soldiers had killed more journalists, no?

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