Administration Again Attempts to Keep News of Its Drone Damages Out of the Country

[youtube]sgkvYmelMFQ[/youtube]

Nieman Watchdog asked Scott Shane recently why he had granted Administration officials anonymity so they could insinuate that those who report on civilian drone deaths were terrorist sympathizers. Shane defended violating the NYT’s prohibition on letting sources attack others under cover of anonymity because of the importance of getting two sides to the story. He also claimed that Administration sources were referring to ISI propagandists, not the journalists reporting on civilian deaths, when they suggested such reports amounted to support for terrorism.

Shane, in written responses to a number of questions that Nieman Watchdog posed to him about the two articles, said he believes this particular quote was not necessarily directed at BIJ, calling it “ambiguous, and I wish I had been able to clarify it.” He added: “Based on all my reporting over the last couple of years, I believe U.S. government officials have in mind not BIJ or other journalists as sympathizers of Al Qaeda but militants and perhaps ISI officers who supply what they consider disinformation on strikes to journalists.”

There’s a problem with that, though: The Administration’s repeated reluctance (and at times outright refusal) to let Pakistani drone critics into this country.

The latest example is Pakistani student filmmaker Muhammad Danish Qasim, who was denied a visa so he can accept an award for his film on how terrorists are capitalizing on drone strikes at a film festival in Seattle. As Glenn Greenwald explains,

In particular, “the film identifies the problems faced by families who have become victims of drone missiles, and it unearths the line of action which terrorist groups adopt to use victimised families for their vested interests.” In other words, it depicts the tragedy of civilian deaths, and documents how those deaths are then successfully exploited by actual Terrorists for recruitment purposes.

We can’t have the U.S. public learning about any of that. In April, Qasim was selected as the winner of the Audience Award for Best International Film at the 2012 National Film Festival For Talented Youth, held annually in Seattle, Washington. Qasim, however, along with his co-producers, were prevented from traveling to the U.S. to accept their award and showcase their film because their request for a visa to travel to the U.S. was denied. The Tribune reported: “Despite being chosen for the award, the filmmakers were unable to attend the award ceremony as their visa applications were rejected twice.

In the same way that The Bureau of Independent Journalism’s reporting on drones rebutted some of the claims made by militants, it appears that Qasim’s film shows how terrorists exploit the victims of drone strikes. It is not al Qaeda propaganda, no matter what anonymous cowards in the Administration might think.

Never the less, the Administration appears determined to keep even nuanced critiques of its drone program out of the country.

Twitter11Reddit0Facebook7Google+0Email

2 Responses to Administration Again Attempts to Keep News of Its Drone Damages Out of the Country

  • 1
  • 2

Emptywheel Twitterverse
bmaz It is pretty hard to imagine Sebastian Vettel being a more selfish loathsome prick. #F1
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz Team orders against Sebastian Vettel? Whoa, but Vettel is, once again, like last year, a fucking selfish dickhead. What a punk jerk.
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @AskZelda_ Well, other than that it was during NFL Playoffs (Ronnie LOVES the Packers), it is awfully attractive, no? http://t.co/m7aEAMMTig
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz NICO! Whoa, what a ballsy move on Vettel. #F1
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz So, what in the world did the Williams crew do to Massa's car?? Man, that was brutal.
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @AskZelda_ I have a Ronald Reagan mask from a Halloween in the 80's, do you think that would work? http://t.co/ksltCAaG4w
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @misterdevans just after the turn of the hour.
4hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz Obama White House Sponsors Young and Rich Narcissistic 1% Fucktards That Will Ruin the World One Day http://t.co/XhEZdHp3yO Seriously
4hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @dceiver @ryangrim @HuffPostLive Lotta repetitive emphasis there. Is this like "All work and no play make Jack a dull boy" from The Shining?
4hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz Now plattered: Ten Years After Undead (a new copy cause my old one was totally dead).
4hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @FrancisJeffrey7 @MarkSZaidEsq @Thomas_Drake1 @TimmyTokyo1 Not quite sure what to make of that, can you rephrase?
5hreplyretweetfavorite