The art of propaganda
July 10, 2008 16 Comments
The AFP got a photo from the Iranian government “the Web site of Sepah News, the media arm of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, on Wednesday,” with a teensy alteration…
and the next day, the Associated Press got an almost-the-same image from the Iranian government…
so you can probably guess which one ran on the front of big rig papers:
update: The New York Times blog The Lede has posted updates and has more information, including this:
In a sentiment no doubt echoed by news organizations everywhere, an MSNBC editor acknowledged that the four-missile picture was initially welcomed with open arms. “As the media editor working the msnbc.com home page yesterday, I was frustrated with the quality of a fuzzy video image we published of the Iranian missile launch,” said Rich Shulman, the network’s associate multimedia editor. “So I was thrilled when the top image crossed the news wires.”
update: on 7/11/08, Drudge reports that the NYT will quote “military insiders” letting us know that this story just keeps getting better:
a video showing what appeared to be many missiles being fired -- is actually one missile, filmed from different angles!
update: from The Telegraph on 7/12/08:
Iran claimed last week to have tested a new version of the Shahab missile with a 1,250-mile range that would put in range much of the Middle East, including Israel and Turkey and the Arabian peninsula, and Pakistan.However, a respected independent national security website, ArmsControlWonk.com, concluded that the missiles were identical to an earlier version of the Shahab, first unveiled by Iran in 1998 with a known range of 746 miles.
… Iran also issued misleading statements about the ranges and doctored videos to make the firings seem more numerous and fearsome than reality, The New York Times reported.
Coverage showing what appeared to be many missiles being fired was apparently just one device, filmed from different angles. “Deception was rampant,” said Charles Vick, an expert on the Iranian missile programme at Global Security, a prominent defence think tank.
… Last week’s missile tests sent oil prices soaring from $136 to $147 a barrel, delivering a windfall gain worth billions of dollars to Iran’s oil-based economy.