Go read the rest of this article to find out why he says this.
Gareth Porter (historian and national security policy analyst): Well, this alleged crisis or confrontation on the high seas is really much less than what met the eyes of the American public as it was reported by news media. And the story really began from leaks from the Pentagon. I mean, there were Pentagon officials apparently calling reporters and telling them that something had happened in the Strait of Hormuz, which represented a threat to American ships and that there was a near battle on the high seas. The way it was described to reporters, it was made to appear to be a major threat to the ships and a major threat of war. And that's the way it was covered by CNN, by CBS and other networks, as well as by print media.
Then I think the next major thing that happened was a briefing by the commander of the 5th fleet in Bahrain, the Vice Admiral Kevin Cosgriff, which is very interesting. If you look carefully at the transcript, which was not reported accurately by the media, or not reported at all practically, the commander -- or rather, Vice Admiral Cosgriff actually makes it clear that the ships were never in danger, that they never believed they were in danger, and that they were never close to firing on the Iranian boats. And this is the heart of what actually happened, which was never reported by the US media.
So I think that the major thing to really keep in mind about this is that it was blown up into a semi-crisis by the Pentagon and that the media followed along very supinely. And I must say this is perhaps the worst -- the most egregious case of sensationalist journalism in the service of the interests of the Pentagon, the Bush administration, that I have seen so far.
Monday, January 14, 2008
Those Iranian speed boats
Please, please, please go over to Alternet and read the article entitled "Sensationalist Media Did Pentagon's Bidding in Fake Naval 'Provocation' with Iran". Take a look at just part of it here: