Little Green Footballs

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Good propaganda from Iraq

How long before these planted stories of 'good news' start cropping up in certain chickenhawk blogs? To be honest they're probably already there.

The Pentagon said it is looking into a newspaper report that said the US military is secretly paying Iraqi newspapers to run stories written by US troops to burnish the US image in Iraq.

"If all of the elements in that story were accurate, there are some things in there that I find troubling, and that's why I've asked for the facts," said Bryan Whitman, a Pentagon spokesman.

"It was news to me," he said.

The Los Angeles Times said the articles were written by US military "information operations" troops, translated into Arabic and placed in Iraqi newspapers with the help of a defense contractor called Lincoln Group.

It said many of the articles were presented as unbiased news accounts trumpeting the work of US and Iraqi troops, denouncing the insurgents, and touting US efforts to rebuild the country.

The report, citing records and interviews, said the US military had paid Iraqi newspapers to publish dozens of the stories since the effort began this year.

Iraqi staff of the Washington-based Lincoln Group sometimes pose as freelance reporters or advertising executives in their approaches to Iraqi media outlets, masking their connection to the US military, according to the report.

Whitman said the report was troubling because the practices it described appeared to be in conflict with the Pentagon's overarching information policy. But he would not be more specific.

"That's what we want to look at: what they're doing and under what authority they believe they are executing some of these things," he said.

1 comment:

Steve said...

Iraq reality from a brave woman who blogs from Baghdad: