BULLY BOY PRESS & CEDRIC'S BIG MIX -- THE KOOL-AID TABLE
IN BAD NEWS FOR BOO BOO, CELEBRITY IN CHIEF BARRY O DISCOVERED HE'D REALLY LOST INDEPENDENTS THIS WEEK.
A NEW POLL FOUND THAT 57% OF INDEPENDENTS DISAPPROVE OF HIS PERFORMANCE.
REACHED FOR COMMENT BY THESE REPORTERS, BARRY O DECLARED THAT HE WASN'T WORRIED, "AS LONG AS I HAVE THE MIDDLE, THE NON-PARTISANS, ON MY SIDE, I DON'T WORRY."
AT WHICH POINT WHITE HOUSE PLUS-SIZE SPOKESMODEL JAY CARNEY LEANED IN TO EXPLAIN TO BARRY O WHO INDEPENDENT VOTERS ARE.
FROM THE TCI WIRE:
Today the United Nations News Centre notes that Martin Kobler declared, "Systemic violence is ready to explode at any moment if all Iraqi leaders do not engage immediately to pull the country out of this mayhem." Kobler is United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's Special Envoy to Iraq and heads the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).
Through yesterday, Iraq Body Count counts 839 violent deaths in Iraq so far this month -- two days left in the month, today and tomorrow. Today National Iraqi News Agency reports a Baghdad roadside bombing claimed 1 life and left six people injured, a Mosul roadside bombing left three people injured, 2 Iraqi border guards in Anbar Province were killed by men "wearing police uniforms," a Mosul suicide car bombing claimed the lives of 3 police officers and left eight more injured, a Baghdad car bombing (Karrada district) claimed 1 life and left nine people injured, 2 Baghdad car bombings (Binooq neighborhood and one "near the Mission Complex") left 6 people dead and nineteen injured, and a Ramadi bombing assassination attempt on Anbar Province Governor Qassim Mohammed al-Fahdawi left the governor unscathed but injured four of his bodyguards. Al Rafidayn notes that motorcycles and vehicles have been banned in Baghdad today and tomorrow. Adam Schreck, Qassim Abdul-Zahra and Sinan Salaheddin (AP) count 33 dead in today's violence. Mohammed Tawfeeq and Jason Hanna (CNN) note that "since Monday alone, at least 120 people have been killed." Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, according to Iraq Body Count, 161 people were killed in violence. If you add AP's 33 death toll for today to that you 194 violent deaths since Monday morning.
UNAMI issued the following on Wednesday:
Baghdad, 30 May 2013 – On 29 May, the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq (SRSG), Mr. Martin Kobler, briefed the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament (AFET) on the current developments in Iraq.
In his exchange of views with the parliamentarians, Mr. Kobler expressed serious concerns over the heightened level of violence in Iraq and the danger that the country falls back into sectarian strife, if decisive action is not taken by its political leaders. “The country stands at a crossroads,” the UN Envoy said, calling for a stronger EU role in dealing with the developments unfolding in the country, and for increased interaction with the Iraqi Council of Representatives.
Mr. Kobler also briefed AFET on UNAMI’s efforts to resettle the former residents of Camp Ashraf to third countries. He deplored the lack of cooperation of the residents and of their leadership with the UNHCR and UN monitors, and urged them to accept concrete resettlement offers. Stressing that “resettlement to safe countries is the only durable option”, he called again on European Union member states to accept former Camp Ashraf residents into their countries.
On violence in Iraq, let's move to the US. First, of all the times to leave -- from a journalistic stand point, now is when you leave Iraq?
To be the last to leave, the last to be gone,
stolen from the ones who hung on to it.
To be the last in line, the ones that live on,
silhouette of a dream, treasured by the ones
. . . who hung on to it.
-- "Fireflies," written by Stevie Nicks, first appears on Fleetwood Mac's Fleetwood Mac Live.
Erik Hayden (Hollywood Reporter) reports today that the last US TV network with a news bureau in Baghdad, CNN, has announced they are closing it. They quote a spokesperson for CNN (nameless because this is so embarrassing would you want your name attached?) stating, "While CNN is departing its current brick-and-mortar location in Baghdad, the network continues to maintain an editorial presence in Iraq through a dedicated team of CNN stringers and correspondent assignments as news warrants." This is when CNN pulls out? And no one thought how this would hurt their news image just when they're rebuilding and gaining viewers by supposedly focusing on news? Hayden explains, "Fox News confirmed to THR that, after the recent closure of their own bureau this year, they rely on stringers and correspondents based in Iraq for their coverage. ABC News and NBC News have one full-time producer based in the capital city."
The violence is at a five year high as CNN closes its bureau? It might be interesting here to note Noam Chomsky's remarks about what happened to the world press when the violence increased in East Timor. CNBC's Pozner and Donahue had Chomsky as a guest for the full hour on the April 20, 1993 and April 22, 1993 episodes. Excerpt.
Noam Chomsky: It's as if history set up a controlled experiment. There were two major atrocities at the same time, same part of the world, roughly comparable in scale. One of them was an Indonesian invasion and annexation, East Timor. The other was Pol Pot atrocities internal to Cambodia. The coverage -- The coverage was dramatically different. The coverage of East Timor declined sharply as the atrocities continued. The coverage of East Timor was pretty high before the Indonesian invasion. It then declined and hit zero in both the United States and Canada -- and most of the western world -- in 1978 when the atrocities really reached genocidal proportions. In Cambodia, on the other hand, there was huge publicity. Within a few weeks of the Khmer Rouge takeover, the New York Times was already denouncing genocide and probably a few hundred or thousand people had been killed. Well what was the difference? The difference was in one case the United States was directly behind it. It was providing 90% of the arms. It was providing crucial diplomatic support.
Phil Donahue: East Timor. The Indonesian invasion of East Timor.
Noam Chomsky: The US provided critical diplomatic support. Daniel Moynihan took pride in the fact that he prevented the United Nations from doing any action -- he writes about it with great pride. The US gave them new offers of arms. As the attack peaked, Carter sent more arms. And Cambodia was an enemy. You can be very moral about the atrocities committed by an enemy.
And it's safer, career wise, to 'cover' Syria (call for war on Syria) than it is to cover Iraq. The US is arming Nouri, they've sent more US troops back in. No one wants to tell the truth. Dropping back to the April 30th snapshot:
December 6, 2012, the Memorandum of Understanding For Defense Cooperation Between the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Iraq and the Department Defense of the United States of America was signed. We covered it in the December 10th and December 11th snapshots -- lots of luck finding coverage elsewhere including in media outlets -- apparently there was some unstated agreement that everyone would look the other way. It was similar to the silence that greeted Tim Arango's September 25th New York Times report which noted, "Iraq and the United States are negotiating an agreement that could result in the return of small units of American soldiers to Iraq on training missions. At the request of the Iraqi government, according to [US] General [Robert L.] Caslen, a unit of Army Special Operations soldiers was recently deployed to Iraq to advise on counterterrorism and help with intelligence."
No other media outlet amplified Tim Arango's NYT report. No media outlet covered the Memorandum of Understanding. The White House backs Nouri al-Maliki and so you get no honesty and now you get even less coverage. But war on Syria is wanted so Deborah Amos and others with NPR end up in that country. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is seen as an 'enemy' by the US government so McClatchy has someone covering it and the New York Times has a whole squadron -- in fact their star reporter would probably be alive today if he'd stuck to covering Iraq but Syria was 'fresh meat' for the cannons of war and off he rushed. Turn on the evening news on commercial US broadcast networks (CBS, ABC and NBC) and you'll find reports from Syria. You won't find Iraq.
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