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The New York Times War on Truth

by Stephen Lendman Saturday, Aug. 16, 2014 at 12:53 PM


The New York Times War on Truth

by Stephen Lendman

The NYT is America's leading establishment publication. It represents wealth, power and privilege. It largely scorns populist interests.

It functions as a quasi-official ministry of propaganda. It offers a daily diet of managed news misinformation.

Its front page has global reach. It's the most valued media space anywhere. Times editors use it irresponsibly.

It bears repeating what previous articles stressed. All the news they claim fit to print isn't fit to read.

A January 2013 open letter to NYT editors was this writer's most widely ever read article by far. It touched the right nerve at the right time.

It accused Times editors of suppressing truth, substituting lies, distortions and deception, supporting wrong over right, and betraying their readers in the process.

Longstanding Times policy is consistent. It violates fundamental journalistic standards.

The Society of Professional Journalists' Code of Ethics Preamble states:

"...public enlightenment is the forerunner of justice and the foundation of democracy."

"The duty of the journalist is to further those ends by seeking truth and providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues."

"Conscientious journalists from all media and specialties strive to serve the public with thoroughness and honesty."

"Professional integrity is the cornerstone of a journalist's credibility."

The Times violates its own "Company Policy on Ethics in Journalism." It does so without apology or explanation. It states in part:

"In keeping with its solemn responsibilities under the First Amendment, our company strives to maintain the highest standard of journalistic ethics."

"(W)e tell our audiences the complete, unvarnished truth as best we can learn it."

"(I)t is essential that we preserve professional detachment, free from any hint of bias."

The longstanding record of "the newspaper of record" belies its high-minded rhetoric. It's deplorable and then some.

Popular interests are spurned. Corporate ones matter more. When America goes to war or plans one, Times editors march in lockstep.

Rule of law principles and democratic values don't matter. Privileged interests alone are served.

The divine right of capital matters most. The Times agenda wreaks of hypocrisy. It defends the indefensible. Its war on truth belies the notion of a free press.

Promoting war on Iraq, discredited reporter Judith Miller wrote daily front page propaganda. She functioned as a de facto Pentagon press agent.

Times editors never properly apologized for the influential role she played in promoting premeditated war on a nation posing no threat to America and violating fundamental international, constitutional and US statute laws in the process.

The same holds for all US post-WW II wars. None were justifiable. All were lawless wars of aggression - from Korea to Obama's war on Iraq.

Waging them reflects Wshington's longstanding quest for unchallenged global dominance. Millions of corpses attest to America's barbarity.

Don't expect Times editors to explain. They support the worst of imperial US policies.

Their pro-Israeli agenda is longstanding. Mass murder and destruction is considered self-defense.

Their Russia bashing is intense. It exceeds the worst of Cold War rhetoric. It's been ongoing for months.

Shameless propaganda substitutes for accuracy and honest analysis. Putschist Kiev neo-Nazi fascists are considered democrats.

Freedom fighting Southeastern Ukrainians are called terrorists. Kiev's war without mercy against its own citizens is considered a liberating struggle.

Howling contradictions go unexplained. Times editors support Washington's right to ravage and destroy one nation after another.

To eliminate their sovereignty. To turn them to rubble. To transform them into dystopian wastelands.

To murder millions of their people. To steal their resources. To exploit their people. To wage permanent wars for unchallenged global dominance.

Times editors back subservient, pro-Western, illegitimate stooge regimes in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Ukraine and elsewhere.

They support Obama's proxy war on Syria and regime change in Venezuela. They ignore his homeland war on freedom and social justice.

Fundamental rights don't matter. Police state lawlessness goes unmentioned. Monied interests alone benefit.

Conditions go from bad to worse. Equity and justice are fast disappearing. America is on a fast track toward full-blown tyranny.

Obama reserves the right to kill anyone extrajudicially for any reason or none at all. He maintains a kill list to do it.

He can order anyone arrested, imprisoned and held indefinitely without charge or trial based solely on suspicions, baseless allegations or none at all.

US military personnel are authorized to arrest and indefinitely detain anyone globally, including US citizens. No one anywhere is safe.

Due process, civil protections, and judicial fairness are null and void. Abuse of power replaced them. It's happening in real time.

Obama disingenuously says one thing. He does another. He's a serial liar. He broke every major promise made and then some.

His war on humanity threatens its survival. Yet Times editors largely support him. Their praise way outstrips their criticism.

Their May 2014 editorial headlined "President Obama and the World," saying:

"…Obama is precisely the kind of foreign policy president most Americans and their allies overseas wanted. He rejected the shoot-first tendencies of George W. Bush."

"While he has made mistakes, and can be frustratingly cautious, he has done a better job than his detractors allow, starting with salvaging an economy that is at the core of American power."

"He has produced the first possibility of a deal on Iran’s nuclear weapons."

Fact: Obama's permanent war policy matches the worst of George Bush.

Fact: Bush's Afghanistan war became Obama's. It rages. It's America's longest war.

Fact: As long as US forces remain in any numbers, it won't end.

Fact: A new Amnesty International (AI) report details US-led NATO's cold-blooded murder of Afghan civilians from 2009 - 2013.

Fact: "None of the cases…were prosecuted by the US military," said AI.

Fact: "Evidence of possible war crimes and unlawful killings has seemingly been ignored."

Fact: As US military commander-in chief, Obama bears full responsibility for cold-blooded murder.

Fact: He authorized lawless aggression on Iraq.

Fact: It's America's third Iraq war since January 1991.

Fact: Attacking a nation posing no threat to America violates fundamental international, constitutional and US statute laws.

Fact: Doing so adds another major crime to Obama's rap sheet.

Fact: Reasons given for all US wars don't wash.

Fact: They have nothing to do with protecting US security, humanitarian intervention or promoting democracy.

Fact: They have everything to do with serving wealth, power and privilege.

Fact: Obama is a warrior president.

Fact: He deplores peace and stability.

Fact: He has lots more death and destruction in mind.

Fact: His Libyan aggression transformed North Africa's most developed nation into a raging cauldron of violence and instability.

Fact: His lawless continuing proxy war on Syria left a wake of deaths, destruction and millions internally and externally displaced.

Fact: He supports Israel's killing machine.

Fact: He scorns long denied Palestinian rights.

Fact: He presides over a protracted Main Street Depression.

Fact: It shows no signs of ending.

Fact: Nearly one-fourth of working age Americans remain unemployed.

Fact: Most others are underemployed.

Fact: America's top 1% never had it better.

Fact: The top 10% is doing fine.

Fact: The vast majority of others suffer through little reported hard times.

Fact: Administration policy makes them harder.

Fact: Vital benefits are being cut when most needed.

Fact: Money saved goes for aggressive wars and corporate handouts.

Fact: Ordinary Americans increasingly are on their own.

Fact: Claiming an Iranian nuclear weapons program is a bald-faced lie.

Fact: No evidence suggests one. It doesn't exist.

According to Times editors, Obama was "right to avoid direct military involvement in Syria." One Big Lie after another followed.

Fact: Syria is Obama's war.

Fact: America recruits, arms, funds, and trains extremist killers like ISIL fighters.

Fact: They're imported. They're invaders. They're proxy US fighters.

Fact: At issue is ousting an independent leader supported by the vast majority of his people.

Fact: It's replacing him with another convenient pro-Western stooge.

Fact: Saying Assad "den(ies) aid to starving people" is patently false.

Fact: So is spuriously claiming he used chemical weapons against civilians.

Fact: Clear evidence shows US-recruited extremists bore full responsibility for multiple chemical weapons attacks.

Fact: Obama's Asia pivot risks serious confrontation with China.

Fact: His support for Ukrainian neo-Nazi fascists risks another with Russia.

Fact: His unending war on humanity risks destroying it altogether.

According to Times editors:

"Taken as a whole and stripped as much as possible of ideological blinkers, Mr. Obama's record on foreign policy is not as bad as his critics say."

It's worse, much worse. Don't expect Times editors to explain.

On August 15, the Times headlined "As the World Boils, Fingers Point Obama's way."

His critics say "he failed to stanch the rise of" ISIL. "He left a vacuum in Iraq…(H)e signed weakness to" Putin.

He "encourage(d) the Kremlin to think it could intervene in Ukraine without fear of significant consequence."

Fact: Washington uses Al Qaeda, ISIL and other extremist groups as both allies and enemies in different war theaters.

Fact: Washington's wars on Iraq transformed the cradle of civilization into a violent dystopian wasteland.

Fact: Obama's Putin bashing shows how far he'll go to denigrate a legitimate leader of a sovereign country to serve US imperial interests.

Fact: Washington intervened lawlessly in Ukraine.

Fact: It replaced a democratically elected government with illegitimate neo-Nazi fascists.

Fact: Putin continues going all-out for peaceful conflict resolution.

Fact: Obama supports Kiev's war without mercy on its own citizens.

Fact: He backs depriving Southeastern Ukrainians from receiving vitally needed/Russian-supplied humanitarian food, water, medical supplies and other aid.

According to The Times, "Obama's policy (shows) restraint…"

Fact: Multiple direct and proxy wars of aggression reveal otherwise.

Fact: So does America's war on Muslims, Latino immigrants, people of color, and ordinary people struggling during the worst economic times since the Great Depression.

Fact: The cold-blooded Mike Brown murder repeats multiple times in large and small cities across America.

Fact: Justice is virtually always denied.

Fact: Militarized police kill with impunity.

Fact: People of color are convenient targets.

Fact: The new Jim Crow is like the old one.

Fact: It's a modern-day racial cast system against people of color.

Fact: It's a symbol of racist hate.

Fact: It's homeland war without mercy against society's most vulnerable.

Fact: It incarcerates hundreds of thousands of political prisoners.

Fact: Racist drug laws permit it.

Fact: So does police state lawlessness.

Don't expect Times editors to explain.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.

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