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Bilal Hussein update: Military details collaboration, MSM still in denial

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By Michelle Malkin  •  December 18, 2007 05:01 PM

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I meant to note this intriguing New York Times story on Associated Press stringer/suspected jihadi collaborator Bilal Hussein earlier today, but got tied up with column-writing duties. As the Jawa Report points out, there are some important details revealed in the piece that once again downplays the dangers of collaborating with foreign stringers. Look:

A spokesman for the military said that Mr. Hussein had been detained as “an imperative security threat” and that he has persistently been “treated fairly, humanely and in accordance with all applicable law.”

In a lengthy e-mail message, the spokesman said that Mr. Hussein had been named by “sources” as having “possessed foreknowledge of an improvised explosive device (I.E.D.) attack” on American and Iraqi forces, “that he was standing next to the I.E.D. triggerman at the time of the attempted attack, and that he conspired with the I.E.D. triggerman to synchronize his photograph with the explosion.”

That’s not all:

The military spokesman said further: “The Associated Press was informed that the sources had reported Mr. Hussein’s knowing and willing offer to provide a false Iraqi national identification card to an alleged sniper, whom Mr. Hussein knew was wanted” by the military, “in order to assist the sniper in eluding capture.”

You’ll note that the reporter had space to fit this in…

The role of Iraqis as front-line reporters, and the dangers they face working for Western news organizations, is well known. In a few recent examples, in October a journalist for The Washington Post, Salih Saif Aldin, was shot dead in a Baghdad neighborhood rife with sectarian violence. That death occurred three months after a local journalist working for The New York Times was killed in the same area. Of the 124 journalists killed in Iraq since the war began, 102 have been Iraqi, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.

And while Western journalists do depend on Iraqi freelancers, several news organizations, including The New York Times, continue to have resident correspondents who leave their compounds to report in Baghdad and beyond.

…but no space to mention the multiple cases of suspected staged, faked, or questionable war photos–including incidents involving Hussein.

You’ll also find no mention of the tough questions posed by LTC Robert Bateman, the military journalist with expertise in dealing with AP cover-ups and the AP P.R. machine.

As I said on Dec. 9, “What you will not read in the AP’s coverage of itself (or in the coverage by its supporters) is any honest, in-depth acknowledgment of the enormous perils of Western media outlets relying on dubious foreign stringers.”

This NYT propaganda piece is no exception.

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Bryan Preston has further dissection.

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Posted in: Bilal Hussein

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Categories: Bilal Hussein

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