January 29, 2010

AP Video Teases Give Away Attitude Toward Tony Blair’s UK Iraq War Inquiry Appearance

BlairAPvidIraqPromo2BlairAPvidIraqPromo1

Based on the two pictures seen at the right, it doesn’t exactly take Sherlock Holmes to figure out that the people at the Associated Press who decide on what pictures to use to tease the wire service’s assorted video clips are not all favorably inclined towards Tony Blair.

Rather than show a picture of the former UK Prime Minister, the AP chose pics of a demonstrator outside where the inquiry was held.

As of about 8 PM ET, the “Raw Video” feed was still in the rotation and easily accessible at many hosted.ap.org pages carrying an international story. An accessible link to that vid is here at YouTube.

The “Blair Unrepentant” story is no longer in the rotation, but can be found here.

Here is a transcript of that “Unrepentant” video:

AP Reporter Martin Benedict: This was billed as “Judgment Day” for Tony Blair, and protestors outside the hearing offered their judgment that Blair was a war criminal for invading Iraq on the false premise that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.

But inside, the former Prime Minister was unrepentant, telling the inquiry panel he’d do it all again if he had to.

Blair: It’s really really important I think to understand this as far as understanding the decision I took, and frankly would take again. If there was any possibility that he could develop weapons of mass destruction we should stop him, that was my view. That was my view then that’s my view now.

Benedict: Outside the mood turned somber, as protestors including actor Samuel West held a naming of the dead ceremony.

Samuel West (speaking to AP): I find it extraordinary that a man who saw 1-1/2 million people march past his office go to war with no more justification than that he, he thought he was doing the right thing. Every war criminal in history has said the same thing.

Benedict: Blair’s successor Gordon Brown is due to give his evidence before the election which will be held by May.  Martin Benedict, the Associated Press.

Blair appears in all of 23 seconds of the 1:22 video. It’s enough to make one almost relieved that the AP has little direct presence (so far) in broadcast television.

As to Benedict’s breezy assertion about Saddam’s possession of weapons of mass destruction being a “false premise,” here the short version of the required routine debunking of the tired leftist claim, historically accurately phrased as “There were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq” (with no qualification of any kind) any time yours truly sees it made:

  • April 2, 2007 — “Munitions Found (in Iraq) Last Year Were Officially WMDs.”
  • In a mid-August 2006 post called “The ‘No WMD’ Lie (With Linked Proof) — The Sequel,” I identified six establishment media press reports describing items found in Iraq after the invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein. The conclusions concerning these items were that 3 of them were “undisputable definites” as WMDs, that one related to raw materials definitely usable for creating WMDs, that one was inconclusive, and that a final item was not a WMD, but a clue to to the existence of hundreds of WMDs that were subsequently found.
  • And of course, there were the 550 tons of yellowcake uranium taken out of Iraq in the summer of 2008. Investors Business Daily deadpanned noted that its “the stuff that can be refined into nuclear weapons or nuclear fuel, at a facility in Tuwaitha outside of Baghdad,” and that “it was bought by a Canadian company for further processing into nuclear fuel — thus keeping it from potential use by terrorists or unsavory regimes in the region.”

Thus, the claim that there were no WMDs in Iraq is demonstrably and indisputably false. Martin Benedict or anyone else at the Associated Press are welcome to come by BizzyBlog or NewsBusters any time to show why my work based primarily on reports by others in their profession is wrong.

They won’t be able to. Thus, they must resort to showing immature caricatures and providing excessive face time and air time to the same people who have been wrong all along, both about the existence of WMDs and who was on the noble side in the military victory known as the Iraq War.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

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4 Comments

  1. That demonstrator should be forced to stay in that fake jail for the next twenty years, for that is what would have happened to him in Iraq before 2003 if he had done the same mocking to Saddam. The good guys are always the ‘war criminals’ while the brutal dictators are the good guys to the far left.

    By the way, the Daily Mail was making some melodramatic indignant noise a few weeks back about the ‘false memo’ that “sent us” into the Iraq War. (I went there to see if there was anything about this DailyMailGate I was hearing about was.) I assume they meant that African uranium purchase. Sorry, Daily Mail (don’t take their skeptical stance toward global warming as an indication they are somehow a conservative rag) but that’s another supposedly false premise that turned out to be true and as Tom here has linked to, doubly so:

    http://www.bizzyblog.com/2009/05/23/where-are-the-cries-of-obama-lied-jobs-died/

    P.S. The use of the term “unrepentant” itself is incredibly loaded and blatantly biased. Saying someone is unrepentant implies they have have something they need to repent.

    Comment by zf — January 29, 2010 @ 10:41 pm

  2. #1, the P.S. is exactly on point. Blair has nothing to be sorry about, and the AP has no call to frame the story as it did.

    Thanks for remembering that May column.

    Comment by TBlumer — January 29, 2010 @ 10:58 pm

  3. No problem, it was one of your best, IMHO.

    Comment by zf — January 29, 2010 @ 11:20 pm

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