Saturday, June 04, 2005

N&O Headlines Strike Again

The Nation & World section of the N&O today leads with: Mistreatment of Quran detailed. The subheader reads: A report explains five incidents, including the spraying of urine on a Muslim holy book.

Given the findings of the investigation, the truthful headline would have read: Respect for the Quran upheld at Gitmo. And the header could have filled in the story with: Limited instances found of Quran abuse.

Is the press really that steamed about Newsweek's embarrassment that they will do anything to cover their tracks?

Are the headline writers at the N&O really so warped that they would refer to "spraying of urine" in a subheader without noting that it was inadvertent (as the article explains)?

Why has the N&O failed to report the details of how the Quran is normally handled at Gitmo and left the job to an opinion piece by Krauthammer? (Proper handling of the Quran means using two hands and wearing gloves when touching it.)

Has even one of the hundreds of reports on terrorist bombings of innocent civilians in Iraq mentioned damage done to the Quran by those bombings?

If you told me that from 2001 until now the only cases of "abuse" of the Quran at Gitmo would be those few being breathlessly spun by the MSM, I would consider that a victory for U.S. military procedures. But for those with a mindset that the U.S. is to blame for the ills of the world, or for those who are trying to score political points, then headline writing becomes an art rather than an attempt to convey the truth.

Follow-up: I wrote this, but then I read Cori Dauber's analysis of the coverage of the Quran story, and she does a much better and more thorough job of looking into the details. Read her here. If that does not get you fired up, go to Media Slander.