Tuesday, January 23, 2007

"the right-wing blogosphere stands revealed as what they are -- a pack of gossip-mongering hysterics who routinely attack any press reports that reflect poorly on their Leader or his policies, with rank innuendo, Internet gossip, base speculation, and wholesale error as their most frequent tools of the trade. The operate in packs, constantly repeating each other's innuendo and expanding on it incrementally, and they then cite to each other endlessly in one self-feeding, self-affirming orgy of links, as though that constitutes proof."

Ooh, I love it when they get nasty!

The above quote is from Glenn Greenwald, who waxes verbose at just about anything.

The topic at hand is the "Jamil Hussein case". Capt. Jamil Hussein of the Iraqi police force was the named source for a large number of AP reports. US bloggers like Michelle Malkin and especially Patterico began to be suspicious of the veracity of the AP's source, and upon enquiry got the response from both the Iraqi Government and the Coalition authorities that they had no record of such a man's existence within the ranks of the Iraq police in Baghdad- a response that was later rescinded on the Iraqi Government's part.

You would indeed expect that a Captain in the Iraqi Police would be known to the authorities, but the key issue was not his existence- that was just the shocked afterthought, that maybe the source was somehow fabricated. The main concern was the truth of the reports he was giving. Michelle Malkin has confirmed the validity of that concern while in Iraq recently.

Greenwald and friends get in a lather over the acceptance of the Iraqi government's word over the non-existence in the Iraqi police of the AP's source. Which rather begs the question as to why they are accepting it now.

Of course they think it shows the authoritarianism of the right that they would accept the Iraqi Government's initial word. Au contraire, amis, it shows that the right doesn't discount the authorities when it suits them, and accept them when they please- unlike the left. The left loves authority when it's their sort. Other sorts, not so much.

There has never, to my satisfaction, been an analysis (let alone a good one) demonstrated by the MSM of their approach to on-the-ground sources in Iraq (and elsewhere in sensitive regions)- a hugely complicated scenario where everyone may have political purposes. Being a partial war zone, the other means of action (war taken as being politics by other means) is political; and both are rife in Iraq. Yet the MSM wants us to gaily take its word for it time and again without regard to the political context, where we know "insurgents" and "police officers" can be sometimes interchangeable. There is no sense in trusting everything a potentially incompetent Iraqi Govt or partially sighted coalition says- there is equally no sense in believing even the ordinary Iraqi in the street as being without political motivation, let alone the sort who in a sense risks his life providing information.

For a man like Jamil Hussein, there has to be something in it for him, and there have to be ways he is retaining his security while providing a news feed to the West. How does that work- not by adopting a pseudonym, apparently. Then how? How? How?

Questioning minds (and creative ones), of which there are many on the right, would like to know.

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