Monday, May 16, 2005

Newsweek Lied; People Died

It would seem that Newsweek has had an attack of Dan Ratherism:

Newsweek Retracts Koran-Desecration Story


Protesters took to the streets in several Afghan cities last week after Newsweek published its report. American flags were burned, relief organizations were attacked and at least 16 people were killed and scores injured in clashes with police.

This is a major crock of feces. I'm all for the First Amendment, but this is pushing freedom of the press too far. Freedoms come with some built-in responsibilities. The oldest example I can recall is the saying that "Your freedom to swing your fist ends at the tip of my nose."

In this case, Newsweek's negligence (and I'm going to assume negligence rather than something more sinister) in swinging their editorial fist has given the US a bloody nose in much of the Moslem world.

The excuse of negligence is only going to go so far, however, and I already see something that bothers me greatly:

In the apology, Whitaker said that its lone source for a story accusing U.S. interrogators of flushing the Koran down the toilet to rattle a detainee later said he could not recall where information about the alleged incident came from.

This starts sounding more like Rathergate when information like this comes out. But rather than jump to conclusions (much as I'm tempted to), I'm going to wait and see what further information develops. I hope it includes the news that some people loose their jobs (if not some body parts), but I'm not holding my breath.

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