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The PJ Tatler

by
Bryan Preston

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July 9, 2014 - 7:20 am

Take a look at the time stamps on this Tatler post here, and this AP story here.

The Tatler post is based on the AP story, yet its timestamp is 3:21 pm Pacific Time, July 8. The AP story’s timestamp is 8:22 pm Eastern Time, July 8. Adjusting for the time zones, the Tatler story went live two hours before the AP story.

That’s not what actually happened. What actually happened is that the AP stealth edited the story. That timestamp is the only indication the AP has given that it edited its story after the fact.

And what an edit…

Here is the original lead, which I quoted at Tatler:

Iraq has informed the United Nations that the Islamic State extremist group has taken control of a vast former chemical weapons facility northwest of Baghdad where 2,500 chemical rockets filled with the deadly nerve agent sarin or their remnants were stored along with other chemical warfare agents.

Iraq’s U.N. Ambassador Mohamed Ali Alhakim said in a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon circulated Tuesday that “terrorist” groups entered the Muthanna site June 11 and seized weapons and equipment from the protection force guarding the facility.

Here’s the edited version:

The Islamic State extremist group has taken control of a vast former chemical weapons facility northwest of Baghdad, where remnants of 2,500 degraded chemical rockets filled decades ago with the deadly nerve agent sarin are stored along with other chemical warfare agents, Iraq said in a letter circulated Tuesday at the United Nations.

The U.S. government played down the threat from the takeover, saying there are no intact chemical weapons and it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to use the material for military purposes.

Iraq’s U.N. Ambassador Mohamed Ali Alhakim told U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in a letter that “armed terrorist groups” entered the Muthanna site on June 11, detained officers and soldiers from the protection force guarding the facilities and seized their weapons. The following morning, the project manager spotted the looting of some equipment via the camera surveillance system before the “terrorists” disabled it, he said.

The new version of the story is more than twice as long as the original. It adds several paragraphs written to play down the threat that ISIS’ seizure of the Saddam-era weapons facility poses. It’s clear from the above, and other edits that follow, that the AP published, then discussed the issue with the Obama administration and the United Nations, and then made very significant edits to its original story.

That’s fine, if the new facts clarify the truth and the AP acknowledges and explains its edits. The AP doesn’t acknowledge the edits. There is no note stating that its story was edited after publication. There’s no notification at all. Just the new timestamp.

 

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.

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Top Rated Comments   
No, no, no, there weren't any. None, nada, zip, zilch. Don't you watch CNN?
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
Recall the million (?) pounds of yellow-cake that the US shipped from Iraq to Canada for processing, and recall those convoys tracked going from Iraq to Syria just before the long run-up to the invasion?
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
So, there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. This will be deeply buried before the day is over.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (42)
All Comments   (42)
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I suspect the newer edited version is actually more correct, since if the dump had intact usable chemical weapons, Bush probably would have pointed that out, since the lack of usable wmd found was a serious detriment to his case for the iraq war. And I suspect US forces never cleaned out that dump because none of the weapons were useable anymore, but it was very hazardous and expensive to destroy them and decontaminate the area. But I do agree the way they did the edit was suspicious. If the administration gives you some additioonal facts which you beleive are correct, and you think should be added to the story, just say so openly.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
My son was in the Marine Corps in 2006 in Iraq and he said there were chemical weapons there because they found them. Of course, no one believed them.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
Actually Michael Jackson and Tupak were there, cryogenically frozen to be revived as part of the Emperor Obama's crowning ceremony when the UN elects him dictator for life.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
Again, they rely on people having no knowledge of the subject.

The various nerve toxins used in munitions have an extremely slow degradation rate. Most of them degrade into substances that are nearly as toxic as the original, to boot. The reason that you "refresh" nerve toxin munitions is that the dispersal mechanisms, from simple explosive charges to sophisticated area sprayers, do degrade much more rapidly, and become unreliable (they may not disperse the payload at the target - or worse, they may disperse it when they are fired). In the 80s and 90s, we were destroying chemical munitions that were manufactured in the 30s as a deterrent to Nazi use, and the 40s and 50s as a deterrent to Soviet use. The destruction of old conventional munitions is a fairly simple, though somewhat hazardous, process - essentially you just make sure the explosives are "burned up" either slowly or quickly. These munitions, however, were very carefully disassembled in a complex and expensive purpose-built facility, and their contents incinerated in high-temperature kilns.

The terrorists have no problem with pulling the still perfectly usable nerve toxins out of the munitions and "repackaging" them into the low-tech version of precision guided weapons - suicide bombers.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yep. I still remember the (no doubt accidental - the builders probably couldn't distinguish between normal HE rounds and this 105mm gas round) sarin shell IED, that only "fizzled" chemical wise because it was detonated with externally placed explosives, and not via the internal dispersion method built into the shell. We got really lucky that day, and almost nobody reported on it.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
AP= American Propaganda.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yep, Bush, Chaney, Rumsfeld, and the intelligence communities of the rest of the world were right.
U.S. liberals were wrong.
Again.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
According to the AP's editorial methods, we've always been at war with Eastasia.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
The supposed chemical weapons were probably planted there by the Bush administration and their running-dog lackeys in the military to sully the good name of President-for-life Hussein and his darling boys Uday and what's-his-name.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
sure hope you forgot the /sarc at the end of your post. ... to denote sarcasm.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
In normal times sarcasm is often so obvious that tags aren't necessary, but we don't live in "normal" times...
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
The more I look at this, the more it looks like the original story was sent over to Democrat Party headquarters for editing, although the AP is so full of lefty activists that is kind of redundant.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
Terrorists capture weapons - that is news.
Terrorists capture junkyard - that is not news.
Terrorists capture heavily guarded junkyard just begs the question.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
I agree. This does not add up.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
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