Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Who wrote that story again?

An article in the LA Times reports that the US Military is covertly (and anonymously) publishing favorable stories in the Iraq media:
"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.

"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. ...


"One of the military officials said that, as part of a psychological operations campaign that has intensified over the last year, the task force also had purchased an Iraqi newspaper and taken control of a radio station, and was using them to channel pro-American messages to the Iraqi public. Neither is identified as a military mouthpiece.

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