Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 27, 2011

The Los Angeles Times Selling Old Canned News

The Los Angeles Times is selling an old story as news.

Syria refugees find sanctuary in Libya
By Ruth Sherlock, Los Angeles Times
December 26, 2011

Reporting from Benghazi, Libya— Even as it recovers from its recent civil war, Libya is fast becoming a place of sanctuary for thousands of refugees fleeing the bloodshed in Syria.

Buses from Damascus, crammed with Syrian families, are arriving daily in the eastern city of Benghazi, the cradle of the effort to oust the late Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi.

"Up to 4,000 Syrian families have sought refuge in Libya in the last weeks, and the numbers are increasing every day," said Mohammed Jammal, a Syrian community leader in the city. "The buses arrive full and go back empty. There used to be two a week, but now there are two a day."
...

That story is somewhat familiar to me. Where did I read it before?

[search, search]

The Daily Telegraph:
By Ruth Sherlock in Benghazi
9:00PM GMT 09 Dec 2011

Buses from Damascus, crammed with Syrian families, are arriving daily into the east Libyan city of Benghazi.

"Up to 4,000 Syrian families have sought refuge in Libya in the last weeks, and the numbers are increasing every day" said Dr Mohammed Jammal, a Syrian community leader in the city. "The buses arrive full and go back empty. There used to be two a week, but now there are two a day."
...

Except for a bit of editing the story in the LA Times and the Telegraph are identical but were published seventeen days apart. The writer, Ruth Sherlock, is: "a freelance journalist and an intern for Haaretz.com" or whatever.

The LA Times seems to believe that such news deserves publishing even weeks beyond it sales date. The editors probably kept it canned so they could publish something over the holidays without having to leave their homes.

The story itself is, by the way, fishy. It is clearly written to hype the success in Libya and to plant grueling tales about Syria.

But the reality is something else. Further down into it we find that the whole issue is likely less about Syrians fleeing to Libya but about Syrian expats, who worked in Libya and fled from there when the civil war broke out, returning to their workplaces. The December 26 LA Times version:

Before the Libyan civil war, thousands of Syrians worked in the country. The Libyan Red Crescent Society estimates they numbered about 12,000 when the war began.

"Many left, but now they are returning and bringing their families with them," said Ziad Dresi, a refugee coordinator for the Libyan Red Crescent Society.

The December 9 Telegraph version:

Prior to the Libyan civil war thousands of Syrians had worked in the country. The Libyan Red Crescent estimates that 12,000 Syrians were in the country at the start of the Libyan uprising. "Many left but now they are returning, and bringing their families with them, " said Ziad al Dresi, a refugee coordinator for the Libyan Red Crescent.

Back to the LA Times. It is supposed to be a daily newspaper. How long does it expect their customers to continue paying when they find out that it is selling stale propaganda pieces as news?

Posted by b on December 27, 2011 at 10:27 AM | Permalink

Comments

"Many left but now they are returning, and bringing their families with them"

all better now that nato fixed it/not.

Posted by: annie | Dec 27, 2011 10:37:56 AM | 1

Libya as a "sanctuary" escaped Sherlock's attention six months ago when it was many times the opposite. Currently, Sherlock writes, "up to 4,000 Syrian families have sought refuge in Libya" vs. nearly a million, with 40,000 risking their lives at sea and 1,500 dead in the attempt, people who escaped Libya as a result of NATO aggression.

June, 2011, news report:
In the four months since the Libyan crisis began, more than 919,000 people have fled the fighting across borders, particularly to Tunisia and Egypt. Goodwill Ambassador Angelina Jolie and UNHCR chief António Guterres met boat people, including unaccompanied minors, on a tiny Italian island on Sunday (June 19) and remembered those who have lost their lives trying to reach Lampedusa by sea from Africa. . .More than 40,000 people have risked the Mediterranean crossing on overcrowded boats and reached Lampedusa so far this year. A further 1,500 have died in the attempt.


Posted by: Don Bacon | Dec 27, 2011 11:32:15 AM | 2

PressTV says Qatar and US are planning to overthrow the Saudi monarchy and install a pro-western government

http://www.presstv.com/detail/217973.html

Posted by: nikon | Dec 27, 2011 11:58:01 AM | 3

Journalists for MSM papers / TV are corporate hacks. They sway around carefully in expensive clothes and gossip all day about sex and hair styles and are thrilled to appear to their families or friends as important ppl. They do almost no work at all, because low-level, repetitive propaganda does not require it, so they will hype whatever comes around, that is their job. They are entrapped by their own insecurity and weakness, and truly believe their cynicism protects them from being or becoming owned cyphers. A last ditch defense is that they need the income so that the kiddies can have a mini pool and go to private school and so on.

Posted by: Noirette | Dec 27, 2011 12:14:46 PM | 4

Ummm....publications like this are not about profit. It's about propaganda, so it's worth operating at a cost because the benefits are accrued elsewhere, off the books.

Posted by: Morocco Bama | Dec 27, 2011 1:03:28 PM | 5

truly believe their cynicism protects them from being or becoming owned cyphers

deep insight

Posted by: claudio | Dec 27, 2011 1:32:40 PM | 6

Not much doubt that the MSM is a propaganda arm of the PTB. Their shallow propagation of the sanctioned messages are becoming pretty threadbare (1 min. 34 sec).

Even the heads of state are falling into the trap of reading their scripts verbatim. A little dated and Stephen Harper was not PM then but observe him and Australian Prime Minister John Howard giving the same speech on Iraq (3 min. 13 sec., sad but simultaneously hilarious).

Posted by: juannie | Dec 27, 2011 2:41:21 PM | 7

very old news, b., http://www.counterpunch.org/2000/03/26/cnn-and-psyops/

thanks,Nikon,3 for the link. I guess, more will be coming from the archives in Libya and Syria soon. though I think, this is mainly Iran psyops (see above, press tv is more official than cnn).

Quatar would risk any semblance of legitimacy of its non democratic Wahhabi government, if it got actively involved in something like that. actually that is probably what the Iranians are shooting at.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_ibn_Abd_al-Wahhab
Their rule is based on religious teachings like Saudi Arabia.

Posted by: somebody | Dec 27, 2011 3:26:54 PM | 8

@#3, nikon: Could this be the correct presstv link?
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/217634.html

Posted by: Jake | Dec 27, 2011 10:14:28 PM | 9

Syrians returning to Libya, but Iraqi refugees (and Syrians) not fleeing violence in Syria to take up residence in Iraq, the ME's home of freedom, democracy and civil rights? How could the MSM have missed this story?

PS--you read this BS first here.

Posted by: JohnH | Dec 27, 2011 10:46:01 PM | 10

So the 'New' Libya is hospitable to Haaretz journos? Interesting.

Also interesting and/or fishy is the idea that buses full of Syrians can somehow make it from Syria to Libya, at all. What route do they take? They'd have to go through Jordan, then get to and through Egypt. Jordan to Egypt would be done either by boat (Aqaba-Nuwaiba), or by transiting Israel. The whole thing seems extremely unlikely... Much more likely is that most of these people were (as indicated) Syrians who'd previously been working in Libya; who left overland-- to Tunisia, Algeria, or Egypt--when the conflict became intense, NATO started bombing etc... and who are now returning to salvage what they can of their former lives. And some of them are returning with anti-Asad sentiments. (If they're arriving in Benghazi, as stated, then they'd probably have been sitting out the war in Egypt.)

What is highly unlikely is what the lede states, that these are "buses from Damascus".

Posted by: Helena | Dec 28, 2011 9:04:04 AM | 11

The handwriting was on the wall about the LA Times when they dumped Robert Scheer and signed on Max Boot.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Dec 28, 2011 9:22:28 AM | 12

I think Helena is onto the truth,as with the modern police states in the ME,travel from Syria to Libya would be long and convoluted,and if true,facilitated by US or NATO.More hasbarite nonsense from serial liars.
Max Boot,where did they dig all these idiots up from,anyway?C-Span spewers of horsehockey,and all part of the borg of Zio-disinformation,obfuscation and plain old mendacity,as they work to keep US mushrooms.
Haaretz had an interview with Dr.Paul,and the talkback was encouraging,as even some Israelis are aware of this crazy madness of sending the world in reverse back to the jungle.

Posted by: dahoit | Dec 29, 2011 9:08:10 AM | 13

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