Urbin Report

Monday, January 15, 2007

The shifting story of the AP and Jamil Hussein

Dafydd (of Big Lizards Fame) cuts through the AP Spin and lists the three possible cases:

1. There really is a Police Captain Jamil Hussein -- under that name -- working at the Khadra police station in Iraq, and he was AP's source, just as they claimed;

2. There is a human working at the Khadra station who was AP's source, but his name is not Jamil Hussein, and he may or may not be a police captain;

3. Or else AP had no source at all at Khadra, and who cares whether someone named Jamil incidentally works at there?

Then he bottomlines it:
Thus, of all the possibilities, the only one that means AP acted honorably, responsibly, and professionally is case 1, where there really, really is a police captain, stationed at Khadra and actually named Jamil Hussein, and that this fellow was actually a source for the Associated Press.

Under any other scenario -- a source for AP at Khadra but who isn't named Jamil Hussein, or even no source whatsoever -- AP has acted despicably, dishonorably, and has forfeited whatever shreds of trust remained in news consumers after 87,339 Iraq horror stories that turned out to be complete fabrications... and it doesn't make a lick of difference whether they knew he wasn't named Jamil Hussein but taunted us with the name anyway, or whether they were so incompetent (or venal) that they deliberately did not even inquire into the matter.

So far, AP has been completely unable to demonstrate that case 1 is true; the closest they have come is to assert, themselves, that the MOI verified it -- only to see that assertion itself disputed.

What's not to understand?

Go read the whole thing.