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US Media Iraq Reporting: See No Evil

In the LA Times, photojournalist Luis Sinco’s retrospective (Goodbye Babylon: A Times Photographer Reflects on the End of the Iraq War) published on Dec. 25, is more negative about the war, but even he, when mentioning the US military’s use of prohibited white phosphorus as a weapon in Fallujah, excuses this war crime by accepting the Pentagon’s ludicrous claim (made after an initial denial that it was used at all) that the horrific weapon was “used on against insurgents, not on civilians,” as if there were any way to separate the two.

The latest unwillingness by the American media as the US War on Iraq appears to be ending, to confront the crimes of the American war machine, continues a long record of the media covering up the brutal nature of America’s imperial wars.

As FAIR reported at the time of the second, larger Marine assault on Fallujah last November, it began with an attack on the city’s main hospital, which was raided by Marines, who grabbed doctors away from patients in mid-operation, cuffing them and forcing them and other hospital personal onto the floor while patients were interrogated and in some cases removed from the facility.

The Times, FAIR reported, “matter-of-factly” reported that targeting of a hospital “because the American military believed that it was the source of rumors about heavy (civilian) casualties.”

In other words, the military attack on, and closing of the city’s only acute care hospital -- a clear war crime under the Geneva Conventions -- was for the Times simply a case of “message control” by the Pentagon, which clearly didn’t want a lot of embarrassing reporting about civilian casualties during its killing spree in the city.

The subsequent targeting and destruction of the Fallujah Central Health Clinic, which led to the death of 35 patients, 15 medics, four nurses and four doctors, and the bombing of a new hospital just about to be opened, were likewise not reported as war crimes in any of the US media.

Also never reported as a war crime was the US military’s deliberate entrapment in the city of all “combat-age” males, meaning those found to be between the age of 15 and 55. As Project Censored wrote about the assault, “The 50,000 citizens who either chose to remain in the city, or who were unable to leave, were trapped by coalition forces and were cut off from food, water and medical supplies...The US military...conducted the invasion as if all the people remaining were combatants.”



story | by Dr. Radut