NY Times' already shady reporting on DNC/RNC
opinion (rant) piece. After hearing Democracy Now's coverage of the DNC/RNC preparations and learning that cops in Denver will be arresting citizens for wielding video cameras, I decided to find out if the mainstream media is covering these developments as well. I find many flaws in a recent New York Times article on security preparations at the DNC/RNC
Here's a scary, but poorly-written article by David Johnston in the New York Times on Denver and St. Paul.
How did this guy get a job at the New York Times?!
Write him a letter (nytnews AT nytimes DOT com; letters AT nytimes DOT com) and ask him why he draws so many unfounded claims in his article, like: "New worries about protests and anarchy could bolster the government's case that the plans are justified." Period. Seriously. That's how the paragraph ends, never to be recovered anywhere else in the article.
He also gets information from sources such as "people briefed on the matter" and "federal officials". So is he admitting he actually didn't get interviews with anyone and is reporting second hand? That would explain his sloppy, evasive style.
Early in the article he makes the jump from anarchists to white separatists, without a pause. He also implies that Denver and St. Paul need more security, that they only have a fraction of what New York City had. Doesn't New York City have, like 12 million people?
And since when is "homeland security" a common colloquial phrase? Is this guy officially adapting it into 'mainstream journalism' to be included in Webster's next year? And what the hell does it mean in this context:
>>Kenneth L. Wainstein, the White House adviser on homeland security and counterterrorism, recently visited Denver and St. Paul, a trip that reflected the administration's interest in the conventions. "In the post-9/11 world, you have to prepare and plan for all contingencies," Mr. Wainstein said.<<
Was there no protesting before 9-11? Why does the Recreate 68 name scare them, then?
>> "That means preparing for everything from a minor disruption and an unruly individual to a broader terrorist event. We need to plan for everything no matter what the threat level is on any particular day."<<
'Unruly individuals' need White House counterterrorism units on their butts? How about a mediator or a doctor or a meal? That's a bit like this guy, equating protest with crime:
"Because of the Internet, the ability of protesters to mobilize and share information has metastasized," said Troy A. Eid, the United States attorney for Colorado. "That would be fine if it were peaceful, as we expect. But we have to plan accordingly." Uh, we expect it to be peaceful, so we're planning accordingly...I mean, uh, we're planning to keep those who metastasize on the internet from being, uh...being peaceful.
>>Each convention has been designated a National Special Security Event, which makes the Secret Service the lead federal agency responsible for protecting dignitaries and providing overall security. Other agencies will be on standby.<<
Johnston doesn't reveal the details of what the Fusion Centers (calls them Special Security Centers really are or the fact that many private militant security firms, immune to accountability, much less investigation, will be on hand. He just writes:
>>Each convention has been designated a National Special Security Event, which makes the Secret Service the lead federal agency responsible for protecting dignitaries and providing overall security. Other agencies will be on standby.<< (for the details, see Democracy Now's recent coverage) He only mentions the 'complex heirarchy of protocols' and 'rumors' of 'exotic weapons', but doesn't detail the merged security are being instructed to take and the weapons they are allowed to carry. Again this makes me think he did minimal research for this article. He's either a very lazy reporter or a shill for the police state. New York Times?! sure.
And I LOVE the following glaring contradiction that he doesn't bother expand on, but maybe, by juxtaposing the facts (hundreds of troops on site) with the weasely lie (There won't be a visible military presence), he makes a point (unintentionally?) that, well, duh! the troops, like the Secret Service and FBI, have every intention of being secretive about their presence. They learned SOMETHING from Katrina. And why do they have bio-radio-chemical training and weapons when the Denver FBI rep said there isn't a threat from terrorists? Is it maybe to USE those tactics on civilians?
>>The National Guard in Minnesota and Colorado will each have hundreds of troops on call to their governors to help civilian medical personnel or bomb squads, for instance, if needed. National Guard specialists trained to deal with biological, chemical, nuclear and radiological weapons will also be available.
"There won't be a visible military presence," said Maj. Gen. Guy C. Swan III, director of operations for the military's Northern Command, which is in charge of the military's response to threats on American soil.<<
Well, that says it all. Protestors are seen as threats on American soil.
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