Home | Away

New York Times reporter Judith Miller warns of possible Cuban bioterror attack

I just thought that this might be a good time to go back to May 2002 and revisit Judith Miller’s seemingly carefully-hedged and scrupulously-attributed claims that Cuba and Iran were teaming up to hit the US with biological weapons.  Of course, Ms. Miller doesn’t come right out and say, “you have to understand, I’m shilling for the far-right tinfoil-helmeted Undersecretary of State John Bolton.” But she doesn’t really need to:

I think what you have here is a problem with how to interpret information about what Cuba is doing. Yes, there is a lot of activity that is suspicious. There’s a lot of circumstantial evidence. And there are a lot of very unsavory contacts, as the administration regards them, between Cuba and especially Iranians who are involved in biological weapons.

And this kind of information led Mr. Bolton and before him another senior State Department official to say that there is a limited offensive effort. Specifically, the State Department said Cuba was experimenting with anthrax and that, of course, got our attention in the press.

But the debate is over how to interpret this information.

This is “embedded journalism” at its finest:  note how Miller embeds “as the administration regards them” in that first paragraph and caps this off with a reference to “debate,” as if she herself is agnostic.  Note also that it’s not just Bolton she’s quoting here:  no, there’s another State Department official before him, so clearly this can’t be looney-tunes saber-rattling Boltonian spin.

What about people who dispute these claims, like former President Carter?  Well, Carter might be a dupe, or he might be in a “camp”:

CNN: Do you have reason to believe that President Carter got duped [Monday]?

MILLER: Well, I think that really how you see this issue depends on what you would like to see. I mean I think that there are many individuals who would like to see a loosening of the four-decade-old embargo against Cuba. And I think that President—former President Carter may be in that camp.

Point being, people, let’s not forget that Miller wasn’t just a Chalabi shill.  She was an all-purpose neocon/extremist shill.

Posted by on 05/27 at 08:22 AM
  1. Even the lib’rul
    New York Times must treat us to
    patriotic lies.

    Posted by the talking dog  on  05/27  at  11:11 AM
  2. Let’s not forget that Miller wasn’t just a Chalabi shill. She was an all-purpose neocon/extremist shill.

    Exactly.  And let’s just add that, given Miller’s extensive social and business connections to the neocon establishment (start with Daniel Pipes’ Middle East Forum—see this article for background), it was unlikely that Miller’s allegiances weren’t known with the Times.  The paper willingly made itself a shill along with Miller.  What’s so goddamn disingenuous about the NYT’s Wednesday mea culpa on the matter is that, by refusing to acknowledge Miller as the center of the problem, the Times has placed out of consideration the one indispensible element of the story—which is nothing so simple as a story of a paper getting gulled by some con artists.  Fuller discussion at Reading A1, the NY Times front page project

    Posted by Michael  on  05/27  at  03:32 PM
  3. Yes, NYT’s failure to name Judy Miller—in fact, the sheer avoidance of it—made the apology more of a defense than an actual mea culpa.  I noticed that, although the NYT claimed that the problem stemmed from more than just one reporter, if you look at their list of “reviewed articles,” all of the really egregiously badly sourced ones were written or co-written by Dame Miller.

    And she’s still treated as though she’s a good reporter by some places— like CNN and the NYT—which is galling.

    Posted by Tom Burka  on  05/27  at  04:32 PM
  4. The real lie is in the final line you quote: “But the debate is over how to interpret this information.”

    She quietly changes a highly debatable and unproved administration allegation into “information.”

    Posted by KRS  on  05/28  at  05:58 AM
  5. I wonder if she’s related to Dennis Miller or Zell Miller.  It would all make so much sense then.

    Posted by  on  05/28  at  02:14 PM

Name:

Email:

Location:

URL:

Remember my personal information

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Submit the word you see below:


Next entry: Special San Francisco edition

Previous entry: The 40 percenters

<< Back to main