- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 12, 2005

No matter how much the “new media” exposes the elite media for its agenda — its biased, slanted framing of stories and the nonreporting of important events — it just keeps at it as if “we the people” are too stupid to notice. As the old guard’s credibility plummets, the mainstream media continues adhering to its elitist agenda of skewing the information offered to the American people.

An incredible event took place recently in Hillah, Iraq. Just one day after terrorists detonated a massive car bomb killing at least 125 Iraqis lined up to take physicals to gain employment with the local police force, thousands of Hillah residents took to the streets in protest. They weren’t protesting the “American occupation” and they weren’t protesting the “aggression of the West.” They weren’t protesting the treatment of terrorists detained at Abu Ghraib. They were protesting against those who murdered their people, against terrorism, Ba’athism and Wahhabism.

If these more than 2,000 people would have taken to the streets in protest of inhumane treatment and indiscriminate terrorism prior to March 2003, “Chemical Ali” would have been dispatched to recreate his gassing of the Kurds. The fact this many people chose to exercise their new freedom of speech, and to do it in protest of Islamo-Fascism with chants of “No to terrorism, no to Ba’athism, no to Wahhabism” is an incredible story which those in other oppressively ruled Arab countries would embrace. Undoubtedly, the people of Lebanon would applaud their Arab brothers and sisters’ quest for freedom.

Yet there was but a whisper of this monumental event in the mainstream media. There was nothing about it in the New York Times. Reuters carried nothing about it. The story was absent from the online pages of CNN, MSNBC, USA Today, CBS and even FOX News. No television station — network or otherwise — covered the protest. The only mainstream outlet to cover the story — a story that faded quicker than William Hung’s singing career — was the Associated Press.

To be fair, ABC, a few midtier newspapers and Salon.com picked up the AP story. But to read it in its entirety on Salon.com you had to be a premium member. How paradoxically capitalistic for a left-wing publication.

Unsurprisingly, the AP story, “2,000 demonstrate at Iraqi bombing site,” penned by Rawya Rageh, had less to do with the actual protest of terrorism than it did with a substory about Florence Aubenas, the French journalist taken hostage two months ago. Of the 1,016 words in the article only 358 were about the protest and even then only 95 words actually reflected the outrage at terrorists and their actions. The Rageh account, however, did manage to find Hussein Hassoun, one of the only protesters who chose to blame the Hillah police for the carnage. He blamed the police for having the applicants line up outside the building where the terrorist struck rather than the cretinous actual murderer.

It is indisputable that the bravery of the Iraqi protesters was ignored by the mainstream media. It’s hard to imagine the media elite would simply overlook such a pivotal story, especially when offered up by the AP. No, a mainstream media outlet that missed this fantastic story wouldn’t be worthy of publishing a junior high school newspaper. It is more likely it chose to pro-actively ignore it.

As has been demonstrated since George W. Bush’s election in 2000, the media elites won’t report or celebrate anything that proves the Bush administration correct. The president and the whole of his administration said, given the chance, the Iraqi people would take to the streets to embrace freedom and democracy. Yet, every step of the way the old guard media and the liberal left have insisted the president and his people were wrong and were creating terrorists not freedom-loving peoples. They were and are so incredibly wrong. They were wrong about Afghanistan, Iraq and, by proxy, Libya and they are proving to be wrong about Lebanon.

On March 1, 2005, in Hillah, the newly found voice of freedom in Iraq reigned supreme over the threats of terrorists. Conversely, our free speech standard bearers continued their disingenuous, politically partisan assault on the American people, by turning a blind eye to an extraordinary event.

FRANK SALVATO

Mr. Salvato is a political media consultant and managing editor for TheRant.us.

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