CBS News correspondent David Martin sent out this alarming tweet.
NEW: Iran or Iranian-backed proxies used explosives to blow holes in four ships — two Saudi oil tankers and two others — near the Strait of Hormuz, according to an initial assessment of the U.S. team sent to investigate, @CBSDavidMartin confirms.
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) May 13, 2019
Notice how he starts out as if stating an incontrovertible fact “Iran or Iranian-backed proxies used explosives to blow holes in four ships — two Saudi oil tankers and two others — near the Strait of Hormuz” before adding a bit of information that undermines the whole thing: “according to an initial assessment of the U.S. team sent to investigate.” In other words, this is what the US government, that has been demonizing Iran as a prelude to war, has simply asserted via anonymous sources with no supporting evidence. He ends by saying he “confirms” it. But what has he confirmed? That Iran was behind a bombing? Or that anonymous US government sources say so? There is a big difference between the two.
A real reporter who is not a mouthpiece for US propaganda and with a concern for objectivity might write something like this: “Two Saudi oil tankers and two others reportedly suffered some damage yesterday near the Strait of Hormuz. While anonymous US officials allege that Iran or its proxies were responsible, no evidence has yet been produced in support of that claim.”
So what do we know? The BBC, although no stranger to warmongering rhetoric either, gives a more nuanced report It appears that four commercial ships reported finding holes in their hulls while in the Strait of Hormuz off the coast of the Untied Arab Emirates. Two are registered to Saudi Arabia, one to Norway, and the fourth to UAE. None of those countries have assigned blame for the damage or made any statement as to the possible cause.
Global maritime news website have questioned the details surrounding the incident. The influential Lloyds List Maritime Intelligence, for example, criticised the authorities for “scant” information.
Quoting the maritime security company Dryad Global, it said: “Saudi reticence to report the incident accurately within their own media channels and the current failure to provide imagery evidence of the attack raises important questions as to the nature of the attack.”
The FleetMon website said: “What happened exactly, how bad were explosions and fire, if there were any, and what definition ‘act of sabotage’ means, how much true is indeed, the whole story, is so far anyone’s guess.”
But who cares about such trivialities as truth or accuracy? Let’s lay the groundwork for another glorious war, baby, and watch TV ratings go through the roof!
Forget the Maine, the Gulf of Tonkin, Iraq’s WMDs, the Kuwait incubators, and the many other times the US has lied the country into war and the media spread its propaganda. This time it’s different! No, really! It’s the truth, they swear!