politics, history and the war on terror
Monday, June 21, 2004
Buried, Again 

It’s time to play the “Where Did The New York Times Bury This Story” game.

Over the weekend, 9-11 Commissioner John Lehman indicated evidence ties between Iraq and al Qaeda exists and the intelligence is still being investigated (front page news in the Washington Times).

"There is at least one officer of Saddam's Fedayeen, a lieutenant colonel, who was a very prominent member of al Qaeda," said September 11 commission member and former Navy Secretary John Lehman. Although he stressed that the intelligence "still has to be confirmed," Mr. Lehman told NBC's "Meet the Press" that the information came from "captured documents" shown to the panel after the September 11 commission's staff report had been written.
So where did the Paper of Record decide to report this story? Well, it certainly is not on the front page, nor is it on the front page of the international section as well. The article is listed on the index page for the international section of the New York Times, which is the full listing of all international articles. Reproduced below is a listing of the index page; the stories the Grey Lady deemed more important than links between Iraq and al Qaeda are highlighted. Look real hard, the article is in there. Really.
Judge in Abuse Case Will Allow Questioning of Top Officers
3 Royal Navy Vessels, With Crew of 8, Are Seized by Iran
U.S. Is Accused of Trying to Isolate U.N. Agency
Saudis Seek American's Body as Militants Vow More Terror
Security: Iraq Government Considers Using Emergency Rule
Hostage: Seoul to Send Troops to Iraq Despite Kidnapping
U.S. Said to Overstate Value of Guantánamo Detainees
Victoria Falls Journal: The Best of Times, and the Worst, for Two Tourist Towns
Ruling Party's Slick Campaign in Mongolia Has Rough Edges
Arroyo Said to Win Bitter Philippines Race
Militant Slain in Algeria; Ties to Qaeda Are Reported
Premier to Fill In as Mubarak Has Surgery
Israel and Hezbollah Clash
Guantánamo Memories, From Outside the Wire
Iraq Update
Security: Iraq Government Considers Using Emergency Rule
Reconstruction: U.S. Is Quietly Spending $2.5 Billion From Iraqi Oil Revenues to Pay for Iraqi Projects
Falluja: Iraqi Official Says U.S. Raid Aimed to Kill Foreign Rebels
Political Uproar: 9/11 Panel Members Debate Qaeda-Iraq 'Tie'
Hostage: Seoul to Send Troops to Iraq Despite Kidnapping
Out of 21 articles indexed on the international page, the potentially ground breaking story of possible links between al Qaeda and Iraq turns up 20th on the list. 20th. While we all know that the American public is far more interested in accusations the U.S. is isolating the U.N., the trials and tribulations of tourists at Victoria Falls, Mongolian power politics, Mubarak’s back and fondness of Guantánamo, one would think evidence of possible links between Iraq & al Qaeda may merit a bit more attention. The claim the links did not exist was front page news only last Thursday, after all.

The Paper of Record’s spinning and editorializing of the news is nothing new; this has been a complaint of conservatives for many years. But when a newspaper proclaims from the front page that links between Iraq and al Qaeda do not exist, then several days later new evidence surfaces that links do indeed exist and the story is relegated to the trash heap of the international section, one has no choice but to question the motives. It is quite obvious by now that the New York Times has a vested interest in promoting news that refutes claims made by the Bush administration and burying news that supports the reasons for war. The intellectual dishonesty of the New York Times’ editors knows no bounds.

Posted by bill roggio @ 1:01 PM