Little Green Footballs

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Charles 'Hypocrite' Johnson

LGF boss Charles Johnson continues to flog a dead horse, this time by way of a news item about the Israeli Defense Force bombing a press car in Gaza.

Johnson is horrified that Reuters would want the Israeli army to investigate the incident, in which two journalists were wounded.

Why is he so outraged? Because Reuters isn't launching a public investigation into the manipulation of photographs by one of its freelancers in Lebanon (whom Reuters has since fired and whose pictures it has withdrawn).

Now ask yourself this: What is more important, a bit of extra smoke in a picture of Beirut, or the near-killing of two journalists doing their job? Was anyone harmed by the dodgy Reuters pictures? No, most of them weren't even widely published until the wingnut-o-sphere made a fuss about them. But the targeting of a car clearly marked as a press vehicle sets a dangerous precedent which deserves to be investigated to find out why it occured.

But Mr Johnson never was a fan of level-headed thought: while civilians were dying in their dozens every day in Lebanon, he made a big fuss about 'staged' photographs, and grandly claimed the entire mainstream media operating there were corrupt and working with terrorists.

That's some chutzpah coming from Johnson, who, as LGF Watch revealed three years ago published a picture of a person dressed up as a suicide bomber and claimed that it showed a 'terrorist supporter' in LA protesting against the Israeli Apartheid wall. (

The picture was taken from the open-publishing newswire at Indymedia LA. Either Johnson trusted the anonymous Indymedia commentator so much that he didn't bother checking the nature of the picture he was posting, or he deliberately used that particular picture to mislead readers into thinking that supporters of suicide bombings openly joined peace protesters at the demonstration.

The evidence points to the latter scenario. As Johnson himself is forced to admit hundreds of comments down the page, he "already knew" that the costumed 'bomber' was a pro-Israeli counter-protestor. But he doesn't bother correcting the headline ("Terrorist Supporters in LA"), or the text accompanying the picture ("Good lord. This happened yesterday at Palisades Park in Los Angeles: Bringing down the wall protest photos."), thereby leaving readers with the impression that it accurately portrays the peace protesters.

If such a distortion of the news had happened at a mainstream media outlet, Charles Johnson would be screaming for the editor's head. But as editor of, Johnson has no qualms about manipulating facts to suit his agenda.

We've said it before, and we'll say it again: Charles Foster Johnson is a Class A Hypocrite.

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