Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Like Kittens, But With Bombs

Just a hunch, but I'm guessing that the Era of Responsible Journalism is over.

Actually, 'era' might be going a bit too far. It was more like two weeks, or however long the Cartoon Jihad took. You still can't find a British paper that'll print cartoons of the Paedo Prophet, but they will devote twenty pages plus a commemorative DVD, to a video showing alleged naughtiness by British troops in Iraq. Lest any member of the public miss the irony in that, they’ve also been sure to include weighty columns talking about how this footage will inflame Muslim opinion. Hey – it was only five minutes ago that inflaming Islamopaths was a bad thing.

Nope, suddenly, it’s all change. Not only do we have 24/7 coverage of the video itself, but the media’s trademark unbiased reporting is in full flow. As ever, the BBC is leading the way:
Tony Blair has said claims of abuse by soldiers "will be investigated" after images that appeared to show UK troops beating Iraqi youths were published.
Ah, yes, youths. Doubtless out scrumping apples when they got jumped by crazed squaddies. Pretty much the whole of the MSM has taken the same line. I suppose we can count ourselves lucky they didn’t go the whole way and call them ‘scallywags’.

You have to read down to paragraph 13 of the BBC report to find out what these youths were really doing.
The tape allegedly shows a disturbance in the street outside what the paper calls a military compound.
Soldiers are shown chasing youths involved in the disturbance, dragging four of them into the compound and beating them on various parts of the body with batons and kicking them, one in the genitals.
And what indeed was the nature of this disturbance ? The BBC ain’t telling. You even get a more balanced perspective going direct to the NotW site. Here’s what they say:
A DIY grenade lands and explodes inside the compound—blasting out shrapnel and a cloud of grey-white smoke. A fire blazes just outside the perimeter wall sending up a pall of black fumes as crowds of rioters chant abuse at the soldiers. Dozens of youths run towards the compound hurling stones, but suddenly turn on their heels—chased by a unit of squaddies in combat helmets with riot visors and desert camouflage. Some of the soldiers are wearing flak vests and are armed with batons and rifles.
So, this would be a ‘disturbance’ in the sense of a ‘riot’, then ? Note the idiot modifier though. Again, most of the MSM has been anxious to insert stupid modifiers like ‘home-made’ in front of any mention of grenades, just so we know it wasn’t anything really dangerous. After all, how much trouble can you really cause with improvised explosives ?

Just to recap, we’ve already got that the alleged victims were part of a mob of rioters trying to storm a British position throwing improvised explosives. Now, check this bit out:
A crackling radio message to the troops pinpoints a target: "Black top, blue bottoms! Black top, blue bottoms! GO!"
So not loveable ragamuffins then. Far from being passing boy scouts, randomly victimized by psychos-in-uniform, the alleged victims were the ringleaders of a rioting mob targeting British soldiers (you know, sort of like here).

Now, usual caveats apply. Yes, indiscipline is like pregnancy, you can’t have a little bit of it. This sort of thing often precedes a more general breakdown in discipline. Equally, in the strict legal sense, it would have been better if the suspects were handed over to civilian courts to deal with. Except, hang on a minute, this footage is two years old – Liberals claim Iraq is in chaos right now. Just what kind of court system did Iraq have two years ago ? Maybe rough justice was all that was available.

The bottom line is that the Liberals’ new baby seals were leaders of rioting mob throwing explosive devices and trying to overwhelm a British garrison. And for this they got a kicking ? This ‘scandal’ isn’t proof of how depraved the British Army is, it’s proof of the opposite. Faced with a pack of bomb throwing savages, they don’t open fire, they dive into the mob and grab the ringleaders, then give them a few kicks, before handing them over to the civilian authorities with the almost certain probability of them being released scot-free. Liberals aren't sure about the importance of press freedom, but when it comes to defending the right to throw bombs at people, they're one hundred percent behind our troops - with a dagger in their hand.


Further proof of the BBC's earnest desire to avoid inflamming the situation. The Rotty Pup reminds us that the BBC solicited comments from Hizb ut-Tahrir, aka the Islamopaths' Islamopaths.

Meanwhile, Alison has been digging and she finds that not only were the MSM aware of the general situation in Iraq at the time, they had specifically reported on these riots. Back then, it suited the MSM to report the vicious nature of the riots as further proof that Iraq was ungovernable. It was only when they had a chance to paint the Army as a bunch of thugs that the rioting scum mutated to a group of jovial young scallywags involved in a disturbance.

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