Fox News for the Middle East
Get out your barf-bags, he-e-e-ere's George:
These are serious times in which we live, and it requires serious, experienced people to deal with the problems that we're confronted with. And the biggest problem we got is we're still at war. I wish I could report to you we weren't at war, but there's an enemy that still lurks that wants to do harm to the United States of America. And they want to do us harm because we stand squarely for freedom and democracy and we're not going to change. You see, they can't stand the fact -- (applause) -- they can't stand the fact that we allow people to worship freely, or to speak their mind in the public square, or to print articles the way they want to print them in America. They have a different view of the world. They've got this vision of darkness that stifles dissent and stifles the freedoms that many of us take for granted...Talking about printing "articles the way they want to print them":
As part of an information offensive in Iraq, the U.S. military is secretly paying Iraqi newspapers to publish stories written by American troops in an effort to burnish the image of the U.S. mission in Iraq.Links via Atrios. Which brings us to my old friends...
The articles, written by U.S. military "information operations" troops, are translated into Arabic and placed in Baghdad newspapers with the help of a defense contractor, according to U.S. military officials and documents obtained by the Los Angeles Times.
Many of the articles are presented in the Iraqi press as unbiased news accounts written and reported by independent journalists. . The stories trumpet the work of U.S. and Iraqi troops, denounce insurgents, and tout U.S.-led efforts to rebuild the country.
While the articles are basically truthful, they present only one side of events and omit information that might reflect poorly on the U.S. or Iraqi governments, officials said. Records and interviews indicate that the U.S. has paid Iraqi newspapers to run dozens of such articles -- with headlines such as "Iraqis Insist on Living Despite Terrorism" -- since the effort began this year.
Thanks to Elendil for tracking down the website of Jim Hake's new enterprise, SignalOneTV. Based on their video spiel, it seems the management team includes:
- Mark Palmer - Founder and Chairman
- Jim Hake - Founder and CEO
- Ahmad al Rikaby - VP
- Houda Koussa - Managing Director, Business Compass
- Barry Hirsh - VP Advertising sales
- Noor Al Kinani - producer, writer, sexy hostess
The company claims it has no political or religious ties, which is a pretty bizarre claim if you have any idea who Mark Palmer is (Wikpedia entry here). SignalOne is broadcasting (or planning to?) from Dubai into Saudi Arabia and Iran, and from Amman, Jordan into Iraq. They are targetting young adults using a "market entry strategy" based on the successes of MTV, CNN and FOX. Just think of it as the Fox News for the Middle East... Yee ha.
And here's their "experience" credibility:
At Central European Media Enterprises (CME, Ticker: CETV) SignalOne executives created the first commercial television stations in the former Soviet Bloc, including the Czech Republic. Today, CME is a television enterprise valued at $2 billion.Yeah, all those carefully orchestrated coloured revolutions that look so good on TV - whatever happened to them?
And just in case you wondered what else Bush had to say in his speech (seems he might have sacked his speech-writer) here's a selection:
The enemy has made Iraq a central front in this war on terror, so we must take it seriously...For fuck's sake! How can anybody really take this guy seriously anymore?
Jon Kyl understands that in this war on terror it's important to have members of the United States Senate who understand mixed messages...
You know, I just recently came off a trip to the Far East...And it struck me that I was in a region of the world where there -- where wars had started.
UPDATE: Ok that's it, I am finally losing it...
How on earth can I compete with these guys? I was trying to update Mark Palmer's Wikpedia entry to make it look like something akin to reality - to explain how this guy is actually just a dressed-up old-fashioned neocon, how he consorts with all sorts of neocon fellow travellers, how the vast network of them is all so bloody obviously strung together (for anyone who cares to look)...
And then I realised: I have a job and a family, how the f*ck can I compete with these people? I mean, seriously - these guys pay others to spin their lies for them!
So how can a lone individual like me possibly compete with what, after all, is basically orchestrated, multinational, globalized, government-funded, media-friendly Big Business? How can I?
The problem is, these people are getting their money from ME! People like you and me, who pay our taxes and work hard! Even as I write, they are creating new media organisations and new channels of information like Pyjamas Open Source Whateverthef*ck to propagandize even more lost souls, and how on earth can I ever even dream of competing with that?
We, the people, are being screwed relentlessly by all these taxpayer-funded government initiatives like the so-called "war on terror" and the War In Iraq and all sorts of other increased domestic security programs, championed by Big Media, while Big Business lines up with corrupt politicians to build new PR fronts and exploit new "growth opportunities". We are grist for their mills.
This is madness...