Shia vs. Sunni. Arabs vs. Persians. Saudi Arabia vs. Iran. What is it about the countries and peoples that are set out to destroy America that make them so hard to understand for us educated, well-read, informed Americans? What, are they trying to confuse us with all these names? Is it a plot? And what’s the difference between these various groups and places and things?
Well, I don’t have time to sort out the three situations listed above, so I just provided Wikipedia links. That should take care of everything.
But I do want to address something that can be genuinely confusing: What’s the difference between Al Qaeda and ISIS? Which came first? And most importantly, which side are we rooting for? (As you’ll see below, a final, essential question here is, Why does the American media suck?)
These questions arose when Jim Jatras wrote a great story for us last week, titled “Bombshell: U.S. & Saudi Role Creating ISIS Ignored by Mainstream Media – and Team Trump.” The story’s first paragraph said:
“Here it is, right from the horse’s mouth! Qatar’s former prime minister spilled the beans about how his country worked with Saudi Arabia and Turkey under the direction of the United States – meaning then the Obama Administration – to funnel arms and money to jihadi terrorists in Syria.” The story went on to provide a summary of the situation from the media outlet Zero Hedge.
Jonathan Marshall, a Washington Babylon reader who lives in California and studied at Cornell and the University of Sussex, didn’t like Jatras’s story. “Really sloppy. Contrary to the headline, the allegations concern al-Qaeda, not ISIS. There’s been serious reporting on this issue for years by the mainstream media. Running a story that mainly quotes from Zero Hedge, with a misleading headline, hardly does your site proud.”
I take complaints seriously and asked Jatras to reply, or figured we’d run a correction or clarification. After receiving Jatras’s reply, I don’t think either is required. Here’s what he wrote:
1. ISIS is an al-Qaeda offshoot. The whole point of the DIA memo was if we keep arming al-Qaeda we’ll get something really nasty. We did, as DIA warned. Al-Qaeda in Iraq turned into ISIS.
2. Where is this reported in Mainstream Media (MSM)? How much have we seen about the DIA memo and that the Obama administration was WARNED what this would lead to? How much reporting on the former the Qatari prime minister — a participant — confirming what they did? Crickets.
3. Zero Hedge reported the story. A number of Middle Eastern outlets did and that can be found on Google news. But from U.S. MSN not a peep. That’s Zero Hedge‘s fault? Washington Babylon‘s? Mine? My whole point is that the media and even Team Trump are covering for Obama and Clinton.
I’m sticking with Jatras here. I give him a Pinocchio rating of 0.
[Note on Pinocchio ratings: 0 Pinocchio: Original claim is totally true. 5 Pinocchio: Original claim is totally false. 1, 2, 3 or 4 stars: Somewhere in between.]