22 Dec

The Latest On Jamil Hussein, Update

                                       

I’m sure if you have been keeping track of the Jamil Hussein story and read Michelle’s latest post you will know by now that the man who we thought may have been the AP’s Jamil Hussein has turned out NOT to have been:

my CPATT sources informed me today that MOI officials have now questioned Captain Jamil Ghlaim at MOI headquarters. Ghlaim continues to deny speaking to AP or any other media outlet.

That CPATT source wrote me also and stated that the guy is so emphatic that he has never contacted nor spoke with the AP that he said:

"I am challenging any one can prove by recording or film that I did that"

Michelle also updates the search for any Jamil Hussein in the Baghdad area:

In the meantime, I did hear back from my on-the-ground source in Baghdad who works with the Iraqi Army, including members who worked in the same police station where "Jamil Hussein" allegedly worked. As I mentioned yesterday, this source is not part of the Civilian Police Advisory Training Team (CPATT). He writes:

I have received back answers from both my RFI and from my IA S-2 [intelligence] and neither one has found a CPT Jamil Hussein working anywhere in Baghdad as an IP. My S-2 friend has talked with some of the officers in the Al-Yarmouk Police Station and they do not know him either.

That makes at least five people, organizations, or teams who thus far have been unable to confirm the existence of a Captain Jamil Hussein at Yarmouk. The other four are CPATT, the Iraqi Ministry of Interior (MOI), Marc Danzinger’s team, and Eason Jordan’s team.

What does this tell us?  That the AP has either violated their own journalist ethics by using a source with a pseudonym for a story (without letting the readers know they were using a pseudonym) or they made up this Jamil Hussein.

With what we know at this point we can reasonably surmise this Burning Six story never happened and that the AP used either questionable sources or a made up source which would call into question every single piece of reporting done by the reporters the AP use.

Of course many on the left, such as Eric Boehlert, do not see it this way.  They believe that since Iraq is actually really bad then made up stories don’t matter.  Why?  Well because its fake stories about events they know really happen. 

Get that?

Here is Eric at Classical Values:

[...]I think the making up of "Jamil Hussein" is the story, because the controversy surrounding it goes to the heart of a greater human problem — how ideology corrupts thinking to the point where facts are seen as subordinate, incidental, even irrelevant.

The last time I discussed "Jamil," the details were still hotly debated, and I was reminded of my relatively meaningless battle over "George Harleigh" (a fictitious professor science professor who had worked for both Nixon and Reagan, and who could always be depended on to sound off about the horrors of Bush).

I soon noticed that there’s a downside to debunking fraudulent people or claims. The people who make them up — and most of those who agree with them — simply don’t care. Because the characters and claims are invented to support what they already believe fervently, debunking them does not "count."

Lies presented in furtherance of a greater "truth" are not really considered to be lies, at least not in the moral sense. The idea is to persuade people, and if fictional people or incidents have to be used, that’s OK, as long as it’s in the interest of the greater truth.

The problem I have with this approach is that I don’t like being lied to. Even when I agree with the cause the lie is intended to support. I don’t find lies emotionally fulfilling because they pollute the process of thought. When lies are presented as "news reports," it’s even worse, because it makes me distrustful every time I pick up the paper or turn on the television.

[...]Boehlert’s approach is to minimize the seriousness of the fictional character and reports, and mount ad hominem style ideological attacks against those who debunked them. While the debunkers’ primary crime is simply that they are "warbloggers" whose pro-war ideology is wrong, he also misleadingly splices selected fragments from quotes (whether this is "Dowdifying" or Issikoffing I’m not sure) to make JunkYardBlog’s SeeDubya and the Anchoress look like heinous opponents of free speech. What they actually said — along with the context — are as unimportant to Boehlert as whether or not Jamil Hussein exists.

The left basically cares little that there was fake smoke added to the Beirut photos, or that long dead bodies were dug up to make a photo op, or that a fake police Captain was used as the primary source for a horrific crime in Iraq because they just know that these fake events just HAVE to have happened sometime in the past so it’s all good.

Amazing how illogical and ignorant the left can be huh?

But never fear you lefties, there appears to be a job opening: (via Protein Wisdom)

AP Iraq Source

Looking for Police Spokesman named Jamil Hussein, willing to take credit for having been source of various stories regarding atrocities.  Names similar to Jamil Hussein will be considered, as will people named Jamil Hussein who work in capacities somehow related to police forces.  Job to start immediately, salary negotiable.

Of course the AP doesn’t use named sources in Iraq anymore.  It’s remarkable how many police officers now wish to remain anonymous isn’t it?

UPDATE

Found another great fisking of the Eric Blowhard piece by The Anchoress:

I think little of Boehlert’s charge that “warbloggers” (of which I am not one) have contempt for the first amendment (here is a hint, sir, the first amendment is all that allows bloggers -”war” or otherwise – to blog freely. Why would any blogger be contemptuous of it? The one statement bloggers writing from both the left and the right can agree on is at we adore the first amendment. Whether Nancy Pelosi feels the same way is actually the more interesting notion.) I think even less of his idea that these so-called warbloggers “would prefer that information about the war in Iraq be disseminated only by the United States military,” which is insulting to both intelligent bloggers and the military, and I find odd his assertion that “The warbloggers’ strawman is built around the claim that if the AP hadn’t reported the Burned Alive story…then Americans would still gladly support the war in Iraq.”

When in heaven’s name did any of us ever utter such foolishness? What many of us have said that the press seems to be ignoring any positive news and working to destroy public support of the war on terror in all its forms – what with fauxtography issues and doubtful sources and the narrative that we only went to war because of Saddam’s WMD, and the whole Wilson/Plame/Niger Yellowcake non-story that aimed to cast doubt on America’s movtives, and the NY Times’ completely inaccurate report on what 5 judges had to say about the NSA foreign wiretap program – but why go on, that’s just more of people seeing and hearing what they want to, right? Right, so let’s move on.

Boehlert wrote, “The warbloggers’ deliberate and daily condemnation of wartime correspondents as being cowardly, unethical, and un-American is likely unprecedented in American history…” Well, yeah, blogs are new and so pretty much everything connected with them is unprecedented. But as a lifelong avid consumer of news and news-by-products, my own opinion (and I suspect I am not alone) is that the press’ embrasure of “fake but accurate” truthiness and “prove-the-negative” accusation as the acceptable new journalistic standards is equally unprecedented.

Or, maybe not. Maybe the press has always operated exactly as it operates today, and we simply never noticed before.

A great piece well worth the time to read the whole thing.

About Curt

Curt served in the Marine Corps for four years and has been a law enforcement officer in Los Angeles for the last 20 years.
This entry was posted in Jamil Hussein Story. Bookmark the permalink. Friday, December 22nd, 2006 at 2:30 pm
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5 Responses to The Latest On Jamil Hussein, Update

  1. Bill Faith says: 1

    Excerpted and linked at We’ll live in shame or go down in shame …

    The Phantom Press Corps Song

    Off we go,into the wild blue yonder,
    Climbing high, into the sun,
    Down we dive, spouting our lies from under
    At ‘em boys, give ‘er the gun,
    We’ll live in shame, or go down in flames,
    Hey! Nothing can stop the phan-tom press corps. …

    Sorry. Fuzzy flashback.

    ReplyReply
  2. crosspatch says: 2

    There are two fundamental problems working hand-in-hand here. While the media will use CENTCOM and Ministry of Interior official spokespersons for information on MNF or Iraqi security casualties, they rely on their stringers for civilian death figures. This is because the stringers provide information that is “better” or rather “better” fits the agenda of the media. Market pressure is the other factor.

    A stringer probably gets paid better if his information is more often used in reports. If a stringer seems to have access to some “Jamil Hussein” that seems authoritative and produces casualty reports in excess of what official sources report, AP is likely to use those reports because they better fit AP’s political agenda. Or play into some paranoia that official sources might be downplaying casualty counts.

    So it doesn’t take long for enterprising people to realize that higher casualty counts make you more money. So some stringer invents a Jamil Hussein or hooks up with some enemy propaganda operation who feeds him incidents and figures. This source’s information gets used and he profits.

    So now you start to have competition between stringers, not on who can report facts, but on who can get printed and get a bonus. So now you start having inflated casualty reports from all kinds of different sources because everyone wants a piece of the action. If you want to get paid a bonus, bring in some civilian casualty figures above the official stats or some incident that the official sources don’t mention.

    In other words, they have created a market demand for fiction. People being people and life being tough … someone steps up to fill that demand by telling them what they want to hear and collecting some cool cash for it.

    So pretty soon you start having media reports that are running twice as high and sometimes higher than the offical reports along with incidents that nobody else seems to know about. Pretty soon the entire thing spirals out of control and Baghdad seems to be a non-stop shooting gallery with thousands killed every month reported in the media and a media that doesn’t really care if the reports are true or not. In other words, the “truthier” the story, the more likely it gets printed.

    Mostly it is market forces playing on the media bias. If the media would pay for accuracy instead of numbers, it would get accuracy. The market will provide what the consumer will buy.

    ReplyReply
  3. Rovin says: 3

    I soon noticed that there’s a downside to debunking fraudulent people or claims. The people who make them up — and most of those who agree with them — simply don’t care. Because the characters and claims are invented to support what they already believe fervently, debunking them does not “count.”

    Lies presented in furtherance of a greater “truth” are not really considered to be lies, at least not in the moral sense. The idea is to persuade people, and if fictional people or incidents have to be used, that’s OK, as long as it’s in the interest of the greater truth.

    While I have taken Eric’s post out of context here, I did go to his site and read the entire post.

    What Eric (and many) fail to realize (or does not mention)is….if AP loses credibility for this preported fabrication, so does every Major News Media that subscribes to their service. If 60+ stories by Jamil Hussein all prove to be questionable at best, how many other totally unsourced or fabricated storys have been produced by AP?

    There is a lot a stake here, and Curt is at the forfront of exposing an agenda of bias that CAN shape the events of the world.

    It’s been far too long for the liberal media (and their “furtherance of a greater “truth”) to go unchecked.

    And for the record Eric, the furtherance of a greater “truth” based on lies is an agenda of bias that will decay the morality of journalism, no matter what the intintions are meant to be.

    ReplyReply
  4. Mike says: 4

    Well this is the slippery slope we’re on. First it was fakery in a Michael Moore “documentary” then “fake but accurate” National Guard “documents” now fauxtography, phony sources and whatever else designed not to report news, but put across a point of view and propaganda.

    It’s just as bad in the discussion on Global Warming where the socialists admit leaving critical data about the Medieval Warm Period out of studies on global warming so they could make the false claim that warming is worse now than at any time in the last 1,000 years.

    And of course they get away with it, so they keep doing it. As I’ve said before, the more hysterical the “news” the wider it’s reported. Any correction, if there is one, is likely to be buried.

    There’s that old Churchill quote (which also gets attributed to Mark Twain): “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.”

    ReplyReply
  5. Acheron says: 5

    Absent personal integrity –“honor” if you will– no institution can contribute anything credible at any time. AP is prima facie riddled with left-ideological Hate America (HA) types: We call them Ha-ha’s, because their pretensions to “public interest” advocacy are so risible. To be blunt: Associated Press wire-service contributors lie. AP editors lie about their lying. As collectivist Statists, the friend of America’s sworn enemy is their friend. Nothing such arrogant, self-aggrandizing elitists say or do matters in the slightest, outside treacherous and sleazy worlds of their own making, because their objectives are solely to smear and ruin opponents in furtherance of their own extraordinarily malign agenda.

    Why should they care? Has William Jefferson (“Big Turnip”) Clinton or his devoted little spouse (our Wife of Bill, aka “the WOB”) ever suffered the slightest consequences for decades-long careers of blackmail, extortion, sell-outs and slander– all for purely personal advantage, political power-at-any-cost?

    Those who dispute this characterization invariably fall back on three themes: Facts mean nothing. Slophead and the WOB may have permanently devalued the American Presidency, knowingly endangered citizens, traded with the enemy (Red Chinese and Saudis, among others)– but Oaths be blamed, America’s not worth defending anyway. And anyone who calls us on such issues victimizes us as inevitable losers in any serious debate. We hate you, who are mad or stupid enough to question our competence, our (ahem) intentions. As Masters of Self-esteem, we may ignore accuracy, coherence, any rational, disinterested inquiry: Attitude is King.

    Anyone suspecting this exaggerates the nature of such cesspools as AP has already joined that Party; and everyone admits which one that is.

    ReplyReply

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