Consortium News’ Record on Russia-gate—How CN Covered the ‘Scandal’: No. 2—‘The Lost Journalistic Standards of Russia-gate’

The Russia-gate hysteria has witnessed a widespread collapse of journalistic standards as major U.S. news outlets ignore rules about how to treat evidence in dispute, wrote Robert Parry on Nov. 20, 2017.

The Lost Journalistic
Standards of Russia-gate

By Robert Parry
Special to Consortium News

A danger in both journalism and intelligence is to allow an unproven or seriously disputed fact to become part of the accepted narrative where it gets widely repeated and thus misleads policymakers and citizens alike, such as happened during the run-up to war with Iraq and is now recurring amid the frenzy over Russia-gate.

The New York Times building in Manhattan. (Robert Parry)

For instance, in a Russia-gate story on Saturday, The New York Times reported as flat fact that a Kremlin intermediary “told a Trump campaign aide, George Papadopoulos, that the Russians had ‘dirt’ on Mr. Trump’s rival, Hillary Clinton, in the form of ‘thousands of emails.’” The Times apparently feels that this claim no longer needs attribution even though it apparently comes solely from the 32-year-old Papadopoulos as part of his plea bargain over lying to the FBI.

Beyond the question of trusting an admitted liar like Papadopoulos, his supposed Kremlin contact, professor Joseph Mifsud, a little-known academic associated with the University of Stirling in Scotland, denied knowing anything about Democratic emails.

In an interview with the U.K. Daily Telegraph, Mifsud acknowledged meeting with Papadopoulos but disputed having close ties to the Kremlin and rejected how Papadopoulos recounted their conversations. Specifically, he denied the claim that he mentioned emails containing “dirt” on Clinton.

Even New York Times correspondent Scott Shane noted late last month – after the criminal complaint against Papadopoulos was unsealed – that “A crucial detail is still missing: Whether and when Mr. Papadopoulos told senior Trump campaign officials about Russia’s possession of hacked emails. And it appears that the young aide’s quest for a deeper connection with Russian officials, while he aggressively pursued it, led nowhere.”

Shane added, “the court documents describe in detail how Mr. Papadopoulos continued to report to senior campaign officials on his efforts to arrange meetings with Russian officials, … the documents do not say explicitly whether, and to whom, he passed on his most explosive discovery – that the Russians had what they considered compromising emails on Mr. Trump’s opponent.

“J.D. Gordon, a former Pentagon official who worked for the Trump campaign as a national security adviser [and who dealt directly with Papadopoulos] said he had known nothing about Mr. Papadopoulos’ discovery that Russia had obtained Democratic emails or of his prolonged pursuit of meetings with Russians.”

Missing Corroboration

But the journalistic question is somewhat different: why does the Times trust the uncorroborated assertion that Mifsud told Papadopoulos about the emails — and trust the claim to such a degree that the newspaper would treat it as flat fact? Absent corroborating evidence, isn’t it just as likely (if not more likely) that Papadopoulos is telling the prosecutors what he thinks they want to hear?

Former Trump foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos.

If the prosecutors working for Russia-gate independent counsel Robert Mueller had direct evidence that Mifsud did tell Papadopoulos about the emails, you would assume that they would have included the proof in the criminal filing against Papadopoulos, which was made public on Oct. 30.

Further, since Papadopoulos was peppering the Trump campaign with news about his Russian outreach in 2016, you might have expected that he would include something about how helpful the Russians had been in obtaining and publicizing the Democratic emails.

But none of Papadopoulos’s many emails to Trump campaign officials about his Russian contacts (as cited by the prosecutors) mentioned the hot news about “dirt” on Clinton or the Russians possessing “thousands of emails.” This lack of back-up would normally raise serious doubts about Papadopoulos’s claim, but – since Papadopoulos was claiming something that the prosecutors and the Times wanted to believe – reasonable skepticism was swept aside.

What the Times seems to have done is to accept a bald assertion by Mueller’s prosecutors as sufficient basis for jumping to the conclusion that this disputed claim is undeniably true. But just because Papadopoulos, a confessed liar, and these self-interested prosecutors claim something is true doesn’t make it true.

Careful journalists would wonder, as Shane did, why Papadopoulos who in 2016 was boasting of his Russian contacts to make himself appear more valuable to the Trump campaign wouldn’t have informed someone about this juicy tidbit of information, that the Russians possessed “thousands of emails” on Clinton.

Yet, the prosecutors’ statement regarding Papadopoulos’s guilty plea is strikingly silent on corroborating evidence that could prove that, first, Russia did possess the Democratic emails (which Russian officials deny) and, second, the Trump campaign was at least knowledgeable about this core fact in the support of the theory about the campaign’s collusion with the Russians (which President Trump and other campaign officials deny).

Of course, it could be that the prosecutors’ “fact” will turn out to be a fact as more evidence emerges, but anyone who has covered court cases or served on a jury knows that prosecutors’ criminal complaints and pre-trial statements should be taken with a large grain of salt. Prosecutors often make assertions based on the claim of a single witness whose credibility gets destroyed when subjected to cross-examination.

That is why reporters are usually careful to use words like “alleged” in dealing with prosecutors’ claims that someone is guilty. However, in Russia-gate, all the usual standards of proof and logic have been jettisoned. If something serves the narrative, no matter how dubious, it is embraced by the U.S. mainstream media, which – for the past year – has taken a lead role in the anti-Trump “Resistance.”

A History of Bias

This tendency to succumb to “confirmation bias,” i.e., to believe the worst about some demonized figure, has inflicted grave damage in other recent situations as well.

Secretary of State Colin Powell addressed the United Nations on Feb. 5. 2003, citing satellite photos which supposedly proved that Iraq had WMD, but the evidence proved bogus.

One example is described in the Senate Intelligence Committee’s 2006 study of the false intelligence that undergirded the case for invading Iraq in 2003. That inquiry discovered that previously discredited WMD claims kept reemerging in finished U.S. intelligence analyses as part of the case for believing that Iraq was hiding WMD.

In the years before the Iraq invasion, the U.S. government had provided tens of millions of dollars to Iraqi exiles in the Iraqi National Congress, and the INC, in turn, produced a steady stream of “walk-ins” who claimed to be Iraqi government “defectors” with knowledge about Saddam Hussein’s secret WMD programs.

Some U.S. intelligence analysts — though faced with White House pressure to accept this “evidence” — did their jobs honestly and exposed a number of the “defectors” as paid liars, including one, who was identified in the Senate report as “Source Two,” who talked about Iraq supposedly building mobile biological weapons labs.

CIA analysts caught Source Two in contradictions and issued a “fabrication notice” in May 2002, deeming him “a fabricator/provocateur” and asserting that he had “been coached by the Iraqi National Congress prior to his meeting with western intelligence services.”

But the Defense Intelligence Agency never repudiated the specific reports that were based on Source Two’s debriefings. Source Two also continued to be cited in five CIA intelligence assessments and the pivotal National Intelligence Estimate in October 2002, “as corroborating other source reporting about a mobile biological weapons program,” the Senate Intelligence Committee report said.

Thus, Source Two became one of four human sources referred to by Secretary of State Colin Powell in his United Nations speech on Feb. 5, 2003, making the case that Iraq was lying when it insisted that it had ended its WMD programs. (The infamous “Curve Ball” was another of these dishonest sources.)

Losing the Thread

After the U.S. invasion and the failure to find the WMD caches, a CIA analyst who worked on Powell’s speech was asked how a known “fabricator” (Source Two) could have been used for such an important address by a senior U.S. government official. The analyst responded, “we lost the thread of concern as time progressed I don’t think we remembered.”

Washington Post’s editorial page editor Fred Hiatt.

A CIA supervisor added, “Clearly we had it at one point, we understood, we had concerns about the source, but over time it started getting used again and there really was a loss of corporate awareness that we had a problem with the source.”

In other words, like today’s Russia-gate hysteria, the Iraq-WMD groupthink had spread so widely across U.S. government agencies and the U.S. mainstream media that standard safeguards against fake evidence were discarded. People in Official Washington, for reasons of careerism and self-interest, saw advantages in running with the Iraq-WMD pack and recognized the dangers of jumping in front of the stampeding herd to raise doubts about Iraq’s WMD.

Back then, the personal risk to salary and status came from questioning the Iraq-WMD groupthink because there was always the possibility that Saddam Hussein indeed was hiding WMD and, if so, you’d be forever branded as a “Saddam apologist”; while there were few if any personal risks to agreeing with all those powerful people that Iraq had WMD, even if that judgment turned out to be disastrously wrong.

Sure, American soldiers and the people of Iraq would pay a terrible price, but your career likely would be safe, a calculation that proved true for people like Fred Hiatt, the editorial-page editor of The Washington Post who repeatedly reported Iraq’s WMD as flat fact and today remains the editorial-page editor of The Washington Post.

Similarly, Official Washington’s judgment now is that there is no real downside to joining the Resistance to Trump, who is widely viewed as a buffoon, unfit to be President of the United States. So, any means to remove him are seen by many Important People as justified – and the Russian allegations seem to be the weightiest rationale for his impeachment or forced resignation.

Professionally, it is much riskier to insist on unbiased standards of evidence regarding Trump and Russia. You’ll just stir up a lot of angry questions about why are you “defending Trump.” You’ll be called a “Trump enabler” and/or a “Kremlin stooge.”

However, basing decisions on dubious information carries its own dangers for the nation and the world. Not only do the targets end up with legitimate grievances about being railroaded – and not only does this prejudicial treatment undermine faith in the fairness of democratic institutions – but falsehoods can become the basis for wider policies that can unleash wars and devastation.

We saw the horrific outcome of the Iraq War, but the risks of hostilities with nuclear-armed Russia are far graver; indeed, billions of people could die and human civilization end. With stakes so high, The New York Times and Mueller’s prosecutors owe the public better than treating questionable accusations as flat fact.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. 

32 comments for “Consortium News’ Record on Russia-gate—How CN Covered the ‘Scandal’: No. 2—‘The Lost Journalistic Standards of Russia-gate’

  1. Litchfield
    March 28, 2019 at 20:19

    Wasn’t this the “lesson” Goebbels learned fromthe American PR king Edward Bernays, the nephew of Sigmund Freud, the viennese Jew? Bernays openly espoused the need to manipiulate the public and the important of developing the propaganda, er, PR tools to do it.

  2. John Kirsch
    March 28, 2019 at 18:51

    Consortiumnews did an outstanding job of covering the fraud known as Russiagate. Robert Parry was one of the first — maybe the first — journalists to raise serious questions about the emerging narrative. Also worthy of praise: Ray McGovern and William Binney.
    The standard-bearers of the mainstream media, on contrast, have disgraced themselves.

  3. Bill
    March 28, 2019 at 14:32

    The NY Times shows no sign of backing down from their Russiagate propaganda.

  4. Dwight Spencer
    March 28, 2019 at 13:26

    I love CN’s professional journalism which is so rare these days. Consider expanding your “consortium” to openly supporting a set of “recommended” YouTube channels such as Jimmy Dore, Rational Nation, Humanist Report, and Secular Talk to keep readers informed of excellent honest sources of amateur journalism as well. Help the people stayed informed by publicizing additional sources directly to them.

    • CitizenOne
      March 28, 2019 at 21:17

      Back in 1995 when Bob was facing following the corporate line he formed this website and poured so much of his talent into it that it is literally a treasure trove of true facts that were under reported by the main stream press. From the bizarre coronation of Sun Myung Moon as son of God and savior of the human race in the basement of the capital attended by conservatives to the truth behind the October Surprise in 1979 which was suppressed by the government and a complicit press that routinely found no credible evidence that the Reagan Bush team deliberately conspired to delay the release of US hostages in Iran to give them an edge in the upcoming election. It was nothing new to the Bushes since Prescott Bush had plotted a coup against FDR which was investigated by Congress in the 1930s. The October surprise was followed by the junior Bush and Cheney administration that fabricated a pack of lies to justify the war in Iraq.

      Bob covered it all staying ever up to date with the news digging deep to find the real story behind the story and perhaps he was the best investigative journalist ever at doing so. He was an incredibly dedicated man who provided all of us with the other side of the story. Often the side that was deliberately hidden from us by powerful wealthy media corporations with a penchant for not reporting whatever they did not want us to know.

      Bob was immediately suspicious of the allegations that Russia had rigged the elections in 2016 and reported extensively on why the story did not add up. In the end his analysis has been vindicated by the Mueller Report (we think).

      Today, after his passing, CN continues to illuminate the real reasons we are currently ginning up a war with Venezuela while the main stream press tows the line and follows the directives of the government to report how we are justified in our actions once again presenting a lopsided coverage just as they did in the Iraq war.

      The entire body of investigative journalism found on this website presents an alternative view of history or lost history contrary to the orthodoxy of the media and the government sources which they rely on spanning decades. It reveals just how significantly one person can unearth truth and present it in a detailed way backed by a ton of facts.

      As the Russia Gate drama unwinds we see a government and a main stream press exposed for plying us with endless allegations and false narratives only to come to the conclusion that there is no there there. That was the conclusion of Robert Parry from day one.

  5. Brian James
    March 28, 2019 at 10:54

    March 17, 2019 Christchurch Massacre Spurs Tech Totalitarians

    But They Have Enemies Trump Could Work With, If He Would Focus.

    http://www.unz.com/article/christchurch-massacre-spurs-tech-totalitarians/

    MARCH 16, 2019 Christchurch Terrorist Attack: Many Unanswered Questions Remain

    The primary suspect in this anti-Muslim terrorist attack is said to 28 year old Brenton Harrison Tarrant (image, left), an Australian citizen from New South Wales.

    https://21stcenturywire.com/2019/03/16/christchurch-terrorist-attack-many-unanswered-questions-remain/

  6. Skip Scott
    March 28, 2019 at 09:06

    Robert Parry was without a doubt the best journalist of his time. Reviewing these articles was a great idea. It is a shame that he wasn’t more widely read by the public. The truth gets drowned out by the “Mighty Wurlitzer”.

    • Gregory Herr
      March 29, 2019 at 16:10

      An editor should put together a review of Robert Parry’s CN articles arranged topically and perhaps with additional and updated commentary from others.

    • April 7, 2019 at 11:52

      The truth is an enemy to Dark Occultists

  7. March 28, 2019 at 08:18

    When I read Parry and Lauria it is like taking a class in journalism.

    Several think were highlighted in my mind when I read but it is interesting that so much attention in the major media has been given to hacking or whatever the Clinton emails and so little on the emails themselves.

    • Litchfield
      March 28, 2019 at 20:11

      “it is interesting that so much attention in the major media has been given to hacking or whatever the Clinton emails and so little on the emails themselves.”

      Yes, verrrry interesting.
      Could there be any misdirection of attention going on?
      the best defense is a good offense.
      So, turn the tables immed. on who dunnit, not on what was in the emails, which would have suggested a genuine motive to leak them. Process, not content or substance, and get the media to frame the whole story that way. That whole part of teh story was “how they did it” not what they stole, nor even who “they” was since it had been pre-decided that the Russians were gonna be the patsies.

  8. 99 Lee
    March 28, 2019 at 07:51

    Some CEO heads should roll over this. Jeff Zucker of CNN, Andrew Lack of MSNBC. Corporate media needs an overhaul. It’s completely lost credibility and is just taking up space as it is.

    • April 7, 2019 at 11:53

      ….and Les Moonves of CBS

  9. Sarge
    March 28, 2019 at 07:21

    Maybe one day liberals will heed advice from the left. But when you recall theit solemn vows after Iraq that “lessons will be learned” there seems little grounds for hope. Indeed this time they are not even acknowledging they were mistaken. I fear these people are now very far beyond reaching.

  10. Zhu
    March 28, 2019 at 01:06

    From the beginning, Russiagate seemed much like the Birther nonsense 10 years ago. Both were based mostly on prejudices & wishful th8nking. The “facts” in both cases were “facts” only if you believed the conspiracy fiction already.

    • marcyincny
      March 28, 2019 at 16:35

      Says The Elephant: “I’m great at setting my hair on fire with wild conspiracy theories and voting against my own self-interest.”

      Says The Donkey: “Hold my beer.”

    • John Kirsch
      March 28, 2019 at 18:53

      There never was any truth to Russiagate. The fraudulent nature of the narrative was obvious from the start.

  11. Curious
    March 28, 2019 at 00:37

    It’s very good to hear from Mt Parry again, even after his passing. He didn’t pull any punches and he had the aptitude and strength to name the people in the media industry who were fabricating the stories.
    It is a reminder of how much I enjoyed his research and his fortitude as he took on the people who felt they were beyond reproach, or flying so stealth they felt their names would not be news.
    It is an honor to read his take on the Russia ruse again as it developed into a swarm of lies.

    Thank you again Mr Robert Parry.

  12. LJ
    March 27, 2019 at 19:02

    Journalistic standards? CNN? I’m an oxymoron, you’re an oxymoron too. Let’s play Bridge against a couple other oxymoron. I suggest we employ Roman Blackwood.

  13. Eric32
    March 27, 2019 at 18:55

    >The Russia-gate hysteria has witnessed a widespread collapse of journalistic standards as major U.S. news outlets ignore rules about how to treat evidence in dispute<

    As good a journalist as Parry was, I have to disagree – it's hard to collapse something that's already deflated.

    The Business [coup] Plot against Roosevelt, revealed and brought to Congress and the press in 1933 by Gen. Butler. Basically covered up. How many people are even aware this thing happened?

    The atrocities and induced famines done early on by the Stalin regime, covered up by NY Times Moscow reporter Walter Duranty.

    The non-reporting re. FDR's illegal transfer of war materials to Canada/Briton prior to US entry into WW2, FDR's moves to leave Pearl Harbor commanders unaware of intelligence re. an impending attack.

    The non-reporting of large scale integration of Nazi scientists, engineers, intelligence officers (Gehlen organization) into US postwar operations.

    The failure to inform the US public of the true situation of the JFK assassination.

    The failure to inform the US public of the true situation of the Robert Kennedy, Martin King assassinations.

    The failure to inform the US public of the true situation of the Iran/Contra arms/drugs affair; the media destruction of Gary Webb, the lack of realistic coverage of his supposed suicide with two gunshots to the head.

    The failure to inform the US public of the true situation in Iraq, post 1991, re. destruction of water, sewage, US prohibition of chlorine imports for water purification, death toll among children, aged, poor from resulting disease, Lancet estimates 500,000 deaths.

    The failure to inform the US public of the true situation of the 9/11 attacks.

    The fanboy coverage of US military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, and CIA abuses of detainees.

    The failure to inform the US public of the true situation nature of the Clinton "charity" foundation.

    The way they covered the 2016 Presidential election – no need to explain what I mean.

    Then, the Russia-Trump hoax.

    • March 27, 2019 at 21:44

      Eric32, Good list! Also add in Wilson’s manipulation of the press to trick the US public into accepting entry into WWI. Wilson also employed some pretty tough tactics in order to get press people in line.

      (According to my reading of history, this might have been the first time that the the press was coopted in this way in support of a foreign war largely irrelevant to the US interests. Prior to this, the WH treated the press with some distain. But people with better history knowledge of the era 1880 to 1910 might be able to catch me out.)

    • Eric32
      March 27, 2019 at 23:04

      Check this out, it’s on Kindle:
      The Secret Origins of the First World War and Prolonging the Agony: How the Anglo-American Establishment Deliberately Extended WWI .

      It makes a case about about Hoover, Morgan some industrialists who were worried about the war ending too soon, so they did something to help it keep going, and make themselves look good at the same time.

      There’s youtube vid interview w/ one of the authors.

    • CitizenOne
      March 28, 2019 at 00:45

      How about the Spanish American War? William Randolph Hearst who was the Rupert Murdoch or Les Moonves of his day and the king of yellow journalism was reportedly unimpressed by his journalist in Havana having found no proof of Spanish involvement in the sinking of the USS Maine. Hearst reportedly sent a telegraph to Cuba stating “You supply the photographs, I’ll provide the war”.

      How about the Lusitania which was loaded in plain sight of German spies with munitions despite a full page notice published by the times by the Germans that any ship carrying munitions would be sunk. The course of the passenger liner was unusual in that it had no convoy and loitered about off the Irish coast traversing over the same area several times for unexplained reasons until it was torpedoed and sank. America went to war.

      It has been a common theme throughout history that any nation which seeks to engage in war must convince the citizens that they are under attack. Goering explained this during the Nuremberg show trials when questioned about how the Nazis convinced average German citizens they needed to enlist. He said all one has to do is to convince the population that they are under attack and they will follow.

      This age old strategy is lost on the media even in our own history revealing that the owners of the means of mass communication are routinely controlled by pro war leaders who are willing and able to support the governments propaganda in order to support military action.

      It gets complicated when we consider the decisive victories in WW1 and WW2 which were in each case initiated by actions that deliberately directed the cause for war or the Casus belli by creating the scenario that the nation was under attack. There are few who would doubt that the cost of lives were not justified facing a grave foe.

      It boils down to the motives of the government. Most recently in our history we have seen the rise of a permanent military establishment and the consequences for misplaced and unwarranted influence by the military industrial complex have reached a new and dangerous level that is a threat to our security and our prosperity and peace among nations. This was the sentiment of the exiting president Eisenhower during his farewell speech to the nation.

      Most recently we have seen the Juggernaut of the defense industry and our “liberal” media and elected leaders actively engaged in perpetuating the external threats to our security even when those threats are not true. We have engaged in military actions based on falsehoods for the perceived good that waging war to topple foreign governments will benefit society and that our peaceful means of diplomacy are ineffective at securing peace.

      There is also ample evidence that diplomacy will always fail when facing an enemy bent on war. Neville Chamberlain comes to mind with his infamous conclusion that diplomatic maneuvers between the free world and the Nazis had accomplished “Peace in our time” It absolutely did not accomplish that goal.

      Most recently we are facing new “threats” devised by our government such as Venezuela, Cuba and Russia which have all the hallmarks of inventing enemies or reinventing enemies to suit our purposes to wage war. The motives are suspect and the actions against our “enemies” via sanctions and covert operations seem like a prelude to war.

      But again it is complicated. It seems likely that if Hillary Clinton was elected that she would perpetuate the propaganda that our enemies need to be dealt a military blow and we need to vanquish the nations we rail against. On the other hand Trump has advocated for extrication from military conflict only to be accused of colluding with the enemy. It seems no wonder that Russia would have tried its best to deny Hillary Clinton and the democrats rule over Washington favoring the peacetime advocating Trump administration.

      It also is a logical conclusion that all of the military industrial might of the nation would rather have enemies in order to justify the massive expenditures by our government to defend the nation.

      Meanwhile the media and the government falls in line with the hardliners like Clinton and does everything it can to sever Trump’s ability to pursue a strategy of economic cooperation with our “enemies”.

      We have some historical justification for making peace not war and to build up our former enemies creating stable economic partners. The Marshall Plan after WWII was such a plan and today our former foes are now economic partners and for the most part peaceful. Germany was rebuilt as was Japan. They beat their swords into plowshares and are today peaceful economic partners. Even former nations like Vietnam are today peacefully engaged in forging economic ties with their former enemies despite the destruction of the war.

      But the media and our democratic party in Washington is having none of that. They agitate and blame Russia for everything and enact economic sanctions reminiscent of the Treaty of Versailles after WWI which is largely credited with the rise of the German army and World war II that followed.

      The one thing that is clear from recent history based on the observations of the past is that our national media and our government notably led by democrats just like many times before is on point for providing the next war and will stop at nothing to discredit those they see as threats and to support those they see as allies in the continuation of planetary war.

      Russia Gate has been explained

    • Skip Scott
      March 30, 2019 at 08:37

      I think the underlying answer is where the money goes. We have forged economic ties with former enemies when the benefit goes to western based corporations, either directly or indirectly. That means they must offer up natural resources on the cheap, or they must offer up cheap labor. Countries that don’t go along with that, like Putin’s Russia or Maduro’s Venezuela, are instantly demonized. And of course our so-called “representatives” all toe the line in order to feed at the corporate trough through campaign contributions and the revolving door, and get their state it’s share of the MIC bounty. Even if every nation became a US vassal, the MIC would still need a bogeyman, so we always have “terrorists” to fall back on.

    • Josep
      April 1, 2019 at 04:21

      Also, millions of innocent German-Americans had their lives ruined. Some were lynched just for the crime of, well, being of German ancestry. Others were forbidden from speaking German. Dog breeds of German origin were ruthlessly murdered. Sauerkraut became known as “Liberty cabbage”. Many towns named after the ones in Germany had to be renamed to sound less German.
      Just before the US joined WWI, there was little animosity towards all things German. And then, all of a sudden, *BOOM!* the US media started portraying Germans as non-human monsters. The same Germans who integrated well into American life and showed little to no signs of perfidy.

      IIRC one of the excuses Wilson got us into war was via so-called “British connections” (can’t remember the exact words), which also meant following the British narrative of Anglo-German relations.
      Consider this: the Industrial Revolution allowed other countries to compete in the worldwide economy that the British controlled through their “Free Market” slave labor in India and their control of the shipping industry. Germany was producing products that were superior in quality and cheaper due to changes and innovation in the manufacturing process. The British, seeing this as a threat to their monopoly, felt the need to deal with the “Huns” before they got richer and more powerful. (think of Microsoft’s smear campaigns against Linux.) And at the end of WWI, Germany was raped by Britain. Keep in mind that Britain covered a quarter of the Earth’s surface and Germany was a relatively young country whose colonial presence in Africa, if I’m not mistaken, was minuscule.
      With America and Britain now in bed with each other, many a Yank and Limey are indoctrinated to think that Germany started both world wars. The Anglo-American hasbara propaganda machine works too well on young, impressionable minds. It is no wonder that Americans continue to use feet, inches, yards, miles, pounds, ounces, and Fahrenheit despite having a decimal dollar-cent system. This former Anglophile has since lost interest in perfidious Albion.

    • Kieron O’Neill
      March 28, 2019 at 04:50

      An excellent list of failures to investigate and report. A window into just how far our media has descended down the drain. Shameful and extremely dangerous.

    • March 28, 2019 at 08:13

      Eric32, informative list. The one that sticks with me because it is so callous:

      The failure to inform the US public of the true situation in Iraq, post 1991, re. destruction of water, sewage, US prohibition of chlorine imports for water purification, death toll among children, aged, poor from resulting disease, Lancet estimates 500,000 deaths.

      This was the act of a “civilized” people.

    • nomad
      March 28, 2019 at 10:55
    • Eric32
      March 29, 2019 at 08:58

      >FDR’s moves to leave Pearl Harbor commanders unaware of intelligence re. an impending attack.<

      The commanders I referenced above were Admiral Kimmel and Gen. Short.

      FDR's Roberts Commission was analogous to LBJ's Warren Commission.

  14. Mike Sokolowski
    March 27, 2019 at 18:34

    “The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly – it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over.”
    – Joseph Goebbels

    • March 27, 2019 at 20:55

      The USA has the largest and most sophisticated propaganda program in history.

    • Eric32
      March 28, 2019 at 12:14

      >The USA has the largest and most sophisticated propaganda program in history.<

      Absolutely.
      But they let it get away from them during Vietnam, and what we have now is the result of a thorough repair job.

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