June 22, 2002

'Faking of the Mass Baby Fu...

'Faking of the Mass Baby Funerals': The BBC's John Sweeney comes up with an embittered and damning "From Our Own Correspondent" piece about torture, fear and propaganda in Iraq. Here's a modified version that ran in The Observer.

Posted by at June 22, 2002 08:56 PM
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Note: Real name, fake email.

BBC World finally broadcast the Sweeney story at about 4pm Sydney time. He said everything the blogosphere has been saying for months---food and medicine are not under sanctions, the Kurdish north does not have the problems the region under Hussein's control does, despite being under the same sanctions, etc etc etc.

There was an interesting ending. At some point he said that the UN was one of the organizations which had swallowed Hussein's dead-children statistics. Later, he showed a little girl with leukemia, and said that if the UN did not act, there would be another little coffin for Saddam.

If the UN does not do what?

He didn't say.

Posted by: Angie Schultz at June 23, 2002 07:08 AM

It should be mentioned, since InstaPundit gave you credit for this link, that it appeared on Lucianne.com long before any of the personal weblogs. (I notice there's a sense of nose-in-the-air among the bloggers towards Lucianne's site that is similar to the attitude the mainstream media has towards you guys...

Posted by: ct at June 23, 2002 08:54 AM

CT -- To be fair to as many as people as possible, Sweeney's report isn't exactly hard math (I still refer everyone to Richard Garfield's pioneering work on the question, which puts total post-1990 under-five "excess" deaths in Iraq -- for all reasons -- at a staggering 350,000).

And, citation-wise, I was reading Dr. Frank's site, which linked to a Little Green Footballs thing that mentioned the BBC story ... and in fact I was reading LGF comments at the exact time when two readers (including Angie) e-mailed the link. So no, I didn't see this first. Lucianne and her site are just fine, as far as I'm concerned; I just don't read it.

Posted by: Matt Welch at June 23, 2002 10:02 AM

Matt, for me the best line of that article was this one:

Being in Iraq is like creeping around inside someone else's migraine. The fear is so omnipresent you could almost eat it. No one talks.

I can just imagine. Actually, I take that back. I can't imagine at all...

Posted by: Sasha at June 23, 2002 02:26 PM

The thing about Lucianne's site is it has God knows how many people (that is people at their own computers all over the world) scouring news sources for interesting or breaking stories, and you really can't beat those kinds of forces to the punch, so why not use it as a service. Lucianne.com is not really a site you read, other than if you want to read people's comments about each story, it's a place to find in one place many stories that nobody else finds, or to find the stories everyone will eventually see only find it first...(or early, I should say)...

Another problem I had with webloggers is Lucianne's site drove alot of traffic to some of the main sites (like andrewsullivan.com) though never got mentioned in return.

It's a different kind of blog operation, but it's a blog nevertheless...

Posted by: ct at June 23, 2002 06:56 PM

CT -- The primary reason why many bloggers don't cite Lucianne.com, I suspect, is that when they click on the thing after there's been a referral to their own sites, they can't at all find the original specific link.

Posted by: Matt Welch at June 23, 2002 07:31 PM

Saddam Hussein. What a total ass-clown.

Posted by: M Ali Choudhury at June 24, 2002 09:25 AM
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at the exact time when two readers (including Angie) e-mailed the link. So no, I didn't see this first. Lucianne and her site are just fine, as far as I'm concerned; I just don't read it.

Posted by: Matt Welch at June 23, 2002 10:02 AM

Matt, for me the best line of that article was this one:

Being in Iraq is like creeping around inside someone else's migraine. The fear is so omnipresent you could almost eat it. No one talks.

I can just imagine. Actually, I take that back. I can't imagine at all...

Posted by: Sasha at June 23, 2002 02:26 PM

The thing about Lucianne's site is it has God knows how many people (that is people at their own computers all over the world) scouring news sources for interesting or breaking stories, and you really can't beat those kinds of forces to the punch, so why not use it as a service. Lucianne.com is not really a site you read, other than if you want to read people's comments about each story, it's a place to find in one place many stories that nobody else finds, or to find the stories everyone will eventually see only find it first...(or early, I should say)...

Another problem I had with webloggers is Lucianne's site drove alot of traffic to some of the main sites (like andrewsullivan.com) though never got mentioned in return.

It's a different kind of blog operation, but it's a blog nevertheless...

Posted by: ct at June 23, 2002 06:56 PM

CT -- The primary reason why many bloggers don't cite Lucianne.com, I suspect, is that when they click on the thing after there's been a referral to their own sites, they can't at all find the original specific link.

Posted by: Matt Welch at June 23, 2002 07:31 PM

Saddam Hussein. What a total ass-clown.

Posted by: M Ali Choudhury at June 24, 2002 09:25 AM
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