June 22, 2012
Is AFP Supporting #ANSFCanDo Propaganda?
There is a currently an ongoing Taliban attack against a hotel near Kabul. Pedro Ugarte (ugartep@twitter), Photo Director AFP Asia Pacific, informed us:
First #AFP #photos of the Taliban attack near #Kabul now in the wire - @Massoud151 at the site http://bit.ly/L9ZODC #Afghanistan
9:22 PM - 21 Jun 12
This is one of the photos found here:
Judging from its distinguished long silhouette the helicopter in the upper left seems to be a UH-60 Blackhawk used in Afghanistan by U.S. forces.
But the AFP distributes that photo with this caption:
AFGHANISTAN, Kabul : An Afghan National Army (ANA) helicopter flies near the site of an attack on a hotel near Qargha lake, outskirts of Kabul on June 22, 2012. Taliban militants armed with rockets and automatic weapons mounted a suicide attack on a hotel at a popular Kabul beauty spot on June 22, with reports saying the insurgents were holding numerous hostages. AFP PHOTO / Massoud HOSSAINI
The AFP capture identifies the helicopter as "Afghan National Army (ANA)". But the Afghan National Army does not fly Blackhawks. The few helicopters it has are all of Russian origin.
The AFP journalist who made those photos knows this. Massoud Hossaini (massoud151@twitter) correctly identified the helicopter:
Two nato helicopters are flying around #Kabul #qargha lake
6:11 PM - 21 Jun 12
Smoke comes up and helicopters were really close to the building in #qargha outskirts of #Kabul operation is going on
7:38 PM - 21 Jun 12
#Kabulattack: another huge explosion and now Nato helicopters are back to the field. Security personnel say 1 still is fighting
8:43 PM - 21 Jun 12
Other journalists also identify the helicopters as "ISAF chopper".
AFP has three photos of the helicopters above the hotel. The captions to all three of them misidentify the helicopters as "Afghan National Army (ANA)". Its reporter who made the photos correctly identified them as "NATO helicopters".
There is of course an ongoing ISAF propaganda campaign claiming that the Afghan National Security Forces are capable of everything and are leading most security task. There is even a Twitter hashtag for this - #ANSFCanDo - used by the ISAF spokesperson to spread "success" stories.
As a recent Afghan Analyst Network report about the death of an Afghan journalist states:
ISAF spokesmen have continued to try to spin the story – claiming even recently that the counter-attack had been ‘Afghan-led’, when in fact, no Afghans were involved in it at all.
What ISAF claims is of course military propaganda. But I find it very curious that a news agency like AFP, despite the correct identification its reporter gave, is distributing his photos with a caption that goes along the ISAF/NATO propaganda campaign instead of the truth.
Update (8:30am): AFP has now changed the captions to those pictures. Maybe noticing AFP of this post helped :-). The captions now read:
AFGHANISTAN, Kabul : A NATO US-made UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter flies near the site of an attack on a hotel near Qargha lake, outskirts of Kabul on June 22, 2012. Taliban militants armed with rockets and automatic weapons mounted a suicide attack on a hotel at a popular Kabul beauty spot on June 22, with reports saying the insurgents were holding numerous hostages. AFP PHOTO / Massoud HOSSAINI
Posted by b on June 22, 2012 at 01:18 AM | Permalink
Just another indication that western news are 0wn3d, even AFP.
Posted by: Alexander | Jun 22, 2012 4:48:09 AM | 1
The West can't withdraw (or partly withdraw) if its forces are desperately needed there. So, there will be Afghan choppers, Afghan B2's, Afghan drones and Afghan satellites.
Posted by: m_s | Jun 22, 2012 5:53:31 AM | 2
>>> Just another indication that western news are 0wned, even AFP.>>>
Alexander, this manipulation isn't from yesterday, but from as early as 1950. Known as "Operation Mockingbird", it was a secret CIA campaign to influence the nedia.
Wiki wrote,"In 1977, a "People" article by Alexander Butler alleged that one of the most important journalists under the control of Operation Mockingbird was Joseph Alsop, whose foreign affairs articles appeared in over 300 different newspapers. Other journalists alleged by People Magazine to have been willing to promote the views of the CIA included Stewart Alsop who headed the international bureau of New York Herald Tribune, Ben Bradlee foreign affairs correspondent for Newsweek, James Reston for the international section of the New York Times, Charles Douglas Jackson foreign photo-journalist for Time Magazine, and international correspondents such as Walter Pincus of the Washington Post, Charles Bartlett of the Chattanooga Times and William C. Baggs and Herb Gold of The Miami News. According to Nina Burleigh (A Very Private Woman), these journalists sometimes wrote articles that were commissioned by Frank Wisner. The CIA also provided them with classified information to help them with their work.
Congressional hearings in 1976 proved CIA had been paying off editors and reporters in most mainstream media outlets
Posted by: www | Jun 22, 2012 7:25:50 AM | 3
Isn't lying representative of the new modern western man,one to whom facts,truth,justice and civility are foreign?I keep hearing in my head, Ray Davies singing,"I'm a 21st(sic)century man,but I don't wanna be here."
Posted by: dahoit | Jun 22, 2012 8:45:10 AM | 5
what, no coverage here about the syrian pilot defecting? that's a huge deal and very telling. surely there's a scoop about how the u.s/the u.k/israel colluded to fabricate the story and there is no syrian pilot who defected.
Posted by: wenis | Jun 22, 2012 8:59:01 AM | 6
The F16 that was just shot down is a somewhat bigger deal.
Posted by: Jim Steel | Jun 22, 2012 9:26:17 AM | 7
The F16 that was just shot down is a somewhat bigger deal.
ask and you shall receive. on both counts..
Maybe noticing AFP of this post helped :-)
i bet it did b. thanks for the hashtag. i am going to check the trajectory. was just about to tweet something till i saw the update. kudos to Massoud Hossaini.
Posted by: annie | Jun 22, 2012 11:40:38 AM | 8
>>> the u.s/the u.k/israel colluded to fabricate the story and there is no syrian pilot who defected.>>>
The pilot's defection is much bigger and troubling news for Syria than the downed F4 (not F16, Jim). When Syrian Tv first announced it, it was the first time since 16 months that Syrian TV posts anything as "breaking news". It began by breaking the news softly with "communications with one of Syria's military planes was lost while it was on a training mission" An hour or so later, Syrian TV started talking about the "traitor that defected". It's understandable that the Syrians don't want to keep this item in the news. After the Jordanian Cabinet approved the pilot's request for political assylum, it was announced on Jordanian TV that the UK embassy was arranging to move the pilot to London. He's probably there now.
Posted by: www | Jun 23, 2012 1:59:53 AM | 9
On that defected pilot. The fact that he flew a Mig-21, the currently oldest and most useless jet in the Syrian airforce, shows that he was not very important. Maybe some reserve officer flying just to keep his license up.
McClathy on the ever lying ISAF: Qargha Lake siege undercuts U.S.-led narrative that Afghanistan war is on track
On Friday, at least four insurgents stormed the Spozhmai restaurant, which lies between a cool lake and desolate mountains about a half-hour drive from the capital, shooting multiple patrons inside and outside the restaurant. The morning after the siege began, McClatchy reporters at the scene observed Norwegian special forces – trainers for the Crisis Response Unit, Afghan police commandos who supposedly had the lead in the operation – raiding the restaurant where the attackers were holed up, helping to bring an end to the fighting.
After the episode ended, U.S. Marine Gen. John Allen, who commands the International Security Assistance Force, as the coalition is formally known, released a statement praising the Afghan security forces, saying they “arrived quickly to secure the scene and liberate civilian hostages” while ISAF “provided minimal support.”
But the scenes of Norwegians storming the building amid heavy gunfire and explosions suggested that their role was far greater than “minimal.” Later, McClatchy reporters observed the Norwegian forces quietly removing from the scene rocket-launcher tubes that are used by NATO forces, not Afghans, a further sign that the international troops were heavily involved in the operation.
It is not the first time that ISAF has been caught understating the role played by its trainers, who work and often live alongside Afghan forces as part of a major push to improve the quality of Afghanistan’s fledgling security forces.
Posted by: b | Jun 23, 2012 7:52:02 AM | 10
I appreciate the informed scrutiny by b that led to AFP's correction of its photo caption (which this AFP photo director's tweet describes as the result of a mistake in the original).
I take AFP at its word in this case, but b's post echoes similar thoughts raised in my mind as a result of writing this long post and comment thread about the Panjwai Massacre - an analysis which could doubtless benefit from similar close scrutiny by anyone interested. In Comments 13 and 16 I've detailed some key unanswered questions and conflicts that I believe are exposed by the media's own reporting. (The lack of specifics in the captions of important March 11 photographs - including by AFP, which had an unnamed reporter and/or photographer on the ground very early - is one contributing cause of the unanswered questions.)
One example of something that could use more expert scrutiny than I can give it are the photographs of weapons carried by Panjwai soldiers that I link in the post (scroll down to the last photograph on the page), and comments (scroll down for the posed group shot of Bales with other soldiers, from which the Daily Mail enlarged the photograph of Bales holding his weapon), with regard to whether weaponlights (such as those sold by SureFire) are visible on the photographed weapons (and/or whether head lamps are visible on the helmets in the former, non-Bales photograph).
My suspicion is that there's a significant amount of important early video and camera footage taken by Afghan reporters and photographers in Panjwai (while working for English-language media outlets), that has yet to see the light of day (through no fault of their own). The limited footage that has emerged - for example, this widely-published photograph of a grieving survivor who's never been identified (but who could potentially be 20-year-old Jan Agha, whose family's four deaths, as reported by Reuters, do not seem to be accounted for in the lists of the dead) - is very important to anyone trying to document what happened.
[Jon Stephenson of McClatchy (and New Zealand) - whose solid, skeptical reporting about the recent restaurant attack near Kabul is highlighted by b in Comment 10 above - happens to play a prominent role in the latter part of my comment section because of an ugly attack (regarding Panjwai reporting) launched against Australia's DatelineSBS by the Australian public broadcaster ABC-TV - which remarks by Stephenson in NZ clearly helped trigger - and because of important subsequent reporting Stephenson did in mid-May about the murders in Alkozai.]
Posted by: pow wow | Jun 26, 2012 1:00:02 AM | 11
Isolated products will be the trend of the future
In the LED lighting market, isolated products will be the trend of the future. The products are integrated and enclosed within the non-conductive casing, therefore, the end user has no danger of electric shock, could touch led and the output wiring place ( usually in the LED lighting and street lighting)
REASHINE CO .,LIMITED puts forward led isolated tube to meet the market demand.
LED drive power with isolation transformers can be directly touched by hands without electric shock. Isolation type is to use transformer to isolate the input end and the output end so as to achieve isolation,it could isolate from the input to the output so as to avoid the risk of electric shock.
The insulating layer can withstand high voltage 2000V, approved by UL Standard.
Energy efficient: efficiency of 90%, PF0.9
Beam Angle: 240°, Large light angle, full range of exposure
For more information about REASHINE’s products visit www.reashine.com
Posted by: Jenny | Jul 18, 2012 1:55:30 AM | 12