Romney bites on planted ABC story of CIA in Iran, blasts “liberal media.”

Anyone who believes Brian Ross of ABC is an investigative reporter, please stand up. Hi, Mitt Romney.
Romney, as did most of the rightwing blogosphere, shot his mouth off about the ABC story on CIA propaganda efforts in Iran; he was “shocked,” saying it endangered lives.

Here’s Brian Ross’s “scoop”:

“Intelligence officials describe the CIA’s Iranian plan as non-lethal, involving a coordinated campaign of propaganda broadcasts, placement of negative newspaper articles, and the manipulation of Iran’s currency and international banking transactions…”

You first have to understand that the ABC story about CIA attempts to destabilize Iran was planted by Elliot Abrams and his band of reknown, part of the ongoing efforts to “put pressure” on Iran. Just another one of the daily attempts to provoke Iran and to make the US public believe that Iran is the most evil thing on the planet. For weeks, when it looked like we would attack Iran, OTLS! provided a daily accounting of these planted stories (see category “Countdown to attack on Iran” in the left hand column).

ABC’s Brian Ross is one of the Bush administrations favorite media go-to guys. Anything on his show is straight from Dick Cheney’s/Elliot Abrams desk. He is the Michael Gordon of the TeeVee. The stuff he gets is not only planted by Bushco, it’s not even fresh stuff; characteristically, Ross gets months-old stories, with a little fresh lipstick. But Brian isn’t proud, and ABC doesn’t care, because ABC is Disney and it’s television; they don’t do footnotes.

Why would Cheney plant a potential destabilizing story, while Condi Rice is trying to organize herself to do some of that diplomacy stuff? Because we have an adminstration that doesn’t have any idea of what to do and who’s running the show. Condi goes that way, Cheney goes this way…..

This Ross “scoop” is Cheney’s story: War. Right now, we have two giant aircraft carriers (plus two WW II size carriers) in the Gulf. Tensions are very high, and Cheney wants them higher,; he wants to enrage the Iranians. He would love to have a war TO-DAY.

Anyway, Romney decides that the ABC planted CIA/Iran story (which is an open secret; Sy Hersh has been writing about it for what, a year?) is an opportunity to denounce the media; I don’t know whether he knows that it’s a planted story or not.

NEW YORK – Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney criticized ABC News on Wednesday for its report about CIA plans in Iran, saying it could potentially jeopardize national security and endanger lives.
ABC News rejected Romney’s analysis, and said it had given the CIA a chance to make the case that its report put people at risk, but the agency didn’t respond.
The network led its top-rated “World News” on Tuesday with Brian Ross’ report saying that President Bush had directed the CIA to carry out secret operations against Iran both inside and outside that country. The network said the campaign was “non-lethal,” and involved propaganda broadcasts, the planting of newspaper articles and the manipulation of Iran’s currency and banking transactions.
Romney, during a campaign appearance in Tulsa, Okla., said he was shocked that ABC News would broadcast the report.
“The reporting has the potential of jeopardizing our national security,” the former Massachusetts governor said. “Stated quite plainly, it has the potential of affecting human life. We may never know.”
He said he did not support censorship, but that “the media has a responsibility to police itself.”
ABC News’ Web site was flooded with 1,683 comments within a day of the broadcast, with one poster urging ABC to “keep your big mouths shut.”
ABC News President David Westin said the network has changed or withheld stories in the past if the CIA convincingly says it could put lives or operations in jeopardy. The CIA was contacted six days ago about Ross’ story, and chose not to say anything about it, he said.

It is an interesting ploy, and a variation on the “plant story in the NY Times, then reference it as fact” ploy used by Cheney et al in the runup to the Iraq war. This is “plant the story with ABC, then use it to condemn the “liberal media.” Nice.

But the bigger story is that the Bush administration is completely rudderless; or more correctly, it has too many rudders. Bush seems to have freed up his main squeeze Secretary of State to pursue her helpless ideas about Middle East diplomacy, but at the same time, Cheney and Abrams still have unfulfilled fantasies of war, and Bush is allowing them to pursue their anti-diplomacy campaign at the same time that Rice scurries about trying “tough love” on the “Islamofascists.”

This is a president who has no vision, no plan, no idea of what is going on in the real world. He imagines himself to be the CEO and spiritual leader and even the savior, or at least the Winston Churchill, of America. He is a disaster on a global scale.

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Filed under Countdown to attack on Iran, Dick Cheney: Hannibal Lector in disguise?, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Iran, Iraq, Middle East

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