I love the way the American media can look at a smoking gun and see only 'assertions' and 'allegations'. The Haditha saga continues, with the BBC finding damning footage refuting the claims of the military as to how the victims died. The CNN report notes, way down in the middle of their story "U.S. investigates more claims of Iraq killings" that:

A BBC report on Thursday ran video of the apparent aftermath of the incident, obtained from a Sunni political group. The BBC says the video shows dead bodies with gunshot wounds.
I couldn't even find mention of the evidence on other websites, though MSNBC has a rather long story about 'echoes of past military atrocities'. It looks as though the American news sites will cover the thing, carefully, gently, until it becomes something mostly forgotten, and the report can just be slipped in, like the one today about the dog handler at Abu Ghraib being acquitted of all but two charges (or as the news stories have reported it, 'being found guilty of dereliction of duty and aggravated assault'). It's all how you spin it.
Shelby commented:
I think the thing that bothers me most about this (other than the fact that babies were executed) is that the statements from the government just focus on how this is bad for PR. I mean hello? Innocent citizens DIED and all you have to say is gee, this is really going to make us look bad? Grrrrrrrr.
on Fri Jun 2 20:18:41 2006

Anonymous commented:
yeah, i found the same on thusday, as i was going to sleep there was a report on bbc radio 4, that the US army had "murdered"innocent civilians in response to the murder of their comrade. Then woke up, and it was the lead story on RTE that morning. But when i go look at the NYT front page not a word about it. And I thought that the "the old lady" was no longer going to show such strong support for bush. But if these events are happening on the ground, how far away is the situation on the ground as represented by rice and rumsfield. Is Iraq in civil war as was suggested by the Guardain a number of weeks ago?
on Fri Jun 2 22:29:38 2006

David commented:
That's something I wonder about - the question of what the real situation is like. But I think there are two points worth thinking about on that - the first is that there are an awful lot of people getting info out in an awful lot of ways - a woman in my office, for example, IMs with her son, a soldier in Baghdad, almost daily. And there are blogs and videos (like the BBC one) and so forth. I'm not sure the situation on the ground is different than the one being portrayed (with the exclusion perhaps of the portrayal by certain media with an agenda). I think it may be that living as we are in a relatively safe and cozy place, we cannot get our head around what the day-to-day realities are. Having spent a lot of time in relatively outlandish locations, I can say that things do become normal, and I imagine (without any evidence other than what I've read or heard) that this is true of Iraq as well. I'm sure lots of people are living normal (well, perhaps that's not the best term) even as others are living a civil war. I do believe that soldiers shoot innocent civilians every day. And I do believe that other soldiers don't, and wouldn't. And that's the worst part - how utterly and completely random it all is.
on Sat Jun 3 00:32:47 2006

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