Buying Good News
Washington, DC. Dec. 1st, 2005 ---- Well the Pentagon, and the Bush Administration have again been caught buying good news in what was said to be a SECRET contract with a dubious K Street propaganda outfit. Not learning from the outcry over Jeff Gannon and desperate for good news out of their failed occupation of Iraq, they stooped to bribing editors and planting their fake stories extolling their successes and achievements.
Administration spokespeople then quoted these fake stories as proof that President Bush was achieving the desired results, and the new Iraqi independent media were the proof. Of course they omitted to say they planted the stories, which were in fact paid advertisements, and in a few cases actually owned the radio stations and newspapers.
The fact that they had created State Propaganda organs like the dictatorships of the old Soviet Union and Hitler's Germany. The question of why the Pentagon, which couldn't afford to give body armor to it's National Guard soldiers, or have their vehicles made with sufficient armor protection but can afford to buy up newspapers and radio stations should be asked by the Democrats. Of course the White House will accuse them of "Playing Politics" but that is why they were elected.
The mainstream media should be up in arms over this revelation, for they too have widely quoted, or used as source many of the fake stories. But the question then has to be asked "How many stories have the Pentagon paid for, and in what newspapers." For the K Street PR company that got the huge contract has said that the contract was SECRET! Why would you have a secret contract to pitch stories to local newspapers in small towns across Iraq. It surely doesn't cost that much, and doesn't warrant all the Cloak and Dagger mystery.
Unless of course the stories were also paid for in US and other key international newspapers and publications as part of a deceitful propaganda scheme to mislead the American public. But the Administration will call this a Conspiracy Theory. Let them prove the accusations completely wrong by issuing details of the PR contract awarded to the Lincoln Group and how much was spent, and where.
Now I have no problem with the US issuing positive news releases of US achievements around the world. They should come from the Department of State and use the normal news apparatus, paid for by the taxpayer. The Voice of America network has disseminated positive news for over half a century. But this is different. The good news was bought and paid for, and used as a basis for evaluating the Pentagon's performance back home. In other words this could be bribery to falsify the oversight process.
In the build up to a military campaign the Pentagon could be excused for planting stories to mislead the enemy. But these stories appear to be to mislead the Iraqi public, and the American media, and the electorate. Money changed hands.
Planting lies is a hallmark of both Bush I and Bush II. The fake stories, and testimony by the poor girl from Kuwait who witnessed Iraqi soldiers smashing newborn babies as they raped their way through Kuwait was a total fabrication, sanctioned by the Bush I White House prior to the Gulf War.
But George, the son, appears to sanction even more misuse of the media. One could argue that these transgressions were the responsibility of the Pentagon, as they were in 2002, the last media scandal to be uncovered. But doesn't the Pentagon report to the "Commander in Chief", or is that title just for "Made for TV" speeches, using neatly stacked military as backdrop, and props for the politicians image.
It is time to fully disclose the activities of the Lincoln Group, BKSH and Associates, as well of the political hacks and close associates of Cheney and Bush who are behind this amateurish way of spreading fake good news. For now when real good news is reported, no one will believe it!