May 17, 2005

A Flush From The Past

Not unlike the frenzied mob of Afghanistan, the blogosphere has erupted in much the same way with many bloggers demanding the blood of Newsweek with their chants of "Newsweek lied and people died".

Im not sure what is worse. That many of these bloggers have unwittingly allowed themselves to become collaborating tools of Islamic fundamentalists or that the the dangerously intoxicating prospect of delivering a finishing blow to Newsweek magazine has caused them to lose track of the bigger forces at play here?

In any event, here is the original toilet flushing story - the one that resulted in no deaths. Next time lets hope that the blogosphere has the courage and wisdom to lay blame with the actually instigators of the riots rather than with our press.

From The Washington Post - 26 March 2003:

"KABUL, Afghanistan, March 25 -- Afghan men freed today after spending months in legal limbo as U.S. prisoners in the war on terrorism said they were generally well-fed and given medical care, but housed in cramped cells and sometimes shackled, hit and humiliated.

After a chaotic day in which it was uncertain when, or if, all the prisoners would be released from Afghan custody, 18 men wearing new American sneakers and carrying brightly colored gym bags walked out of a run-down police compound here late today. Some hugged jubilantly, while others left feeling bitter and vengeful.

The men, the largest single group of Afghans to be released after months of detainment at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, gave varying accounts of how American forces treated them during interrogation and detainment. Some displayed medical records showing extensive care by American military doctors, while others complained that American soldiers insulted Islam by sitting on the Koran or dumping their sacred text into a toilet to taunt them..."

So there you have it folks. The same story published in March of 2003 and yet there was no riots and killing over it. Fast forward now to May of 2005 and the same story suddenly becomes the cause of deaths.

Is Newsweek responsible for the deaths or shall we blame the instigators and the rioters themselves who are using this crisis to manipulate not only public opinion but their own political agenda?

Hopefully an analysis and update of the entire drama as it continues to unfold later today.

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