Accuracy in Media

The United Nations is one of the most sacred cows in the media. A U.N. official implies that the U.S. is stingy in foreign aid and the media start a chorus of concern about whether we’re going to spend enough on the victims of the giant tidal wave. Cable news programs feature U.N. chief Kofi Annan as the world’s point man on helping mankind. There are no reminders that the U.N. is a corrupt agency that frequently makes international problems worse.  From the oil-for-food scandal to failing to help democracy in Iraq to cases of U.N. peacekeepers raping children, the U.N. has been a disgrace.

But the media strategy is an old one: make the U.N. look good and the U.S. look bad. It was a belated attempt to make George Bush into Scrooge. Papers like the Washington Post jumped on, with stories based on anonymous sources claiming that President Bush hadn’t acted quickly enough to express concern about the tidal wave disaster. There was no comparable attention focused on U.N. boss Annan, who came into the picture even later, finally interrupting a skiing vacation in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. 

As part of the anti-American campaign, Tim Russert declared on NBC News that the U.S. has to win the hearts and minds of Muslims in the affected areas by spending lots of money on relief and looking compassionate. We are led to believe that this will somehow transform the “Great Satan” into a blood brother of Allah. Nonsense.

To get some idea of the hatred that exists in the Arab/Muslim world toward the United States, consider that the Saudi government daily Al-Watan published an article charging that the U.S. military in Iraq is harvesting and selling human organs. The article was also published in the Iranian daily Jomhouri-ye Islami and the Syrian daily Teshreen.  The article charges, “Secret European military intelligence reports indicate the transformation of the American humanitarian mission in Iraq into a profitable trade in the American markets through the practice of American physicians extracting human organs from the dead and wounded, before they are put to death, for sale to medical centers in America. A secret team of American physicians follow the troops during their attacks on Iraqi armed men to ensure quick [medical] operations for extracting some organs and transferring them to private operations rooms before they are transferred to America for sale.”

The Baltimore Chronicle & Sentinel, a far-left publication, has picked up on some of these charges, running an article alleging that some of the same practices are occurring in Afghanistan. “In American Afghanistan,” writes somebody named Jane Stillwater, “there is another all-too-familiar harvest: Human organs.” She also alleges that “children have become a cash crop” in Afghanistan.

We found the Iraq story posted by a French web site, where a person with basic common sense noted that, “This is preposterous on its face. You CAN’T harvest organs from corpses, because the lack of blood flow kills the organ? Such stories were also invented by the Soviets about the U.S. doing this in Latin America?kidnapping children for organ removal.” This writer said that “?the Arab World is doing the Iraqis no favors by churning up stories so preposterous that they’re easily dismissed in the U.S. as just another ‘Arab Conspiracy Theory’?.”    

The organ stories were publicized by the Middle East Media Research Institute, which translates articles from the Arab media. It would be nice if people like Tim Russert would take note of them and ask whether there is any amount of money that will please purveyors of hate against America. The logical extension of his view is that the multimillionaire bin Laden can be bought off. He’s motivated by ideology, not money. He’s not impressed by helping Muslims because he himself kills Muslims.

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