Node Of Evil - Fair And Balanced Reporting

For those who feel the war on terrorism
could use a little "Structural Adjustment".

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Monday, January 17, 2005

Quickie: As Bran has indicated, I'll be posting about Hersh's article in a bit (probably later this evening). However, I wanted to discuss for a minute the role of rumor in wartime. Specifically, in reference to the post below about the capture of Al-Zarqawi. Many of the civil/independence/interstate wars in Africa have happened in very large geographical areas at low intensity. In some cases, there was little or no fighting in the capital city (for instance, little of the Angolan civil war actually occured in the capital of Luanda). There were, however, huge amounts of rumors and misinformation that spread like wildfire. Some of them had a basis in fact, while others were completely fabricated and sometimes at the behest of outside parties. I believe I've written before on the Node, for instance, about one case where a rumor was passed around that the anti-government rebel group in Angola, called UNITA, had obtained fighter jets. This was not only spread around via the heresay in the capital, but was also promulgated by analysts at a South African security firm and found its way into a few press reports.

The Node has, by chance, found and subscribed itself to the email service of one such company. Whether that subscription is supposed to be limited in circulation or not we cannot tell. Some of the information in these emails is quite accurate, while other information seems to be more propoganda than information. We're working to determine how trustworthy this source may actually be, as it's quite apparent that they have a slant in one direction (pro-war, Christian, etc.). I believe that with this incident we can determine that only some of what they promulgate is trustworthy, and therefore we'll pass along on the most solid of their claims.

I mostly want our readers to know that in time of war, and especially one as diffuse (in some ways) as the Iraq conflict, there is alot of rumor and misinformation. Also, realized that some of this is spread deliberately by all interested parties. We have seen that the U.S. government certainly isn't above using such tactics in Iraq (think Jessica Lynch) and one cannot trust all the insurgency says either. Common sense and good sources are always an asset. We at the Node continue to work hard to develop and maintain both.

Andrew 9:44 PM : |


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