Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Double Standards: Two Quotes (Updated)

President Obama said (via NPR's ATC program): "I have made it clear that the United States respects the sovereignty of the Islamic Republic of Iran and is not interfering in Iran's affairs. But we also must bear witness to the courage and dignity of the Iranian people, and to a remarkable opening within Iranian society. We deplore the violence against innocent civilians anywhere that it takes place. [...]

[On Neda Agha Soltani and the video showing her killing:] "It's heartbreaking. It's — it's heartbreaking. And I think that anybody who sees it knows that there's something fundamentally unjust about that."

And if the victims of violence had been Palestinians?

NPR's Morning Edition: Airstrikes believed to be carried out by U.S. predator drones have killed at least 45 militants in Pakistan and injured scores more. The reported death toll would make the attack the deadliest since the U.S. deployed its remotely guided missiles to target the Taliban leadership dug into Pakistan's mountainous border with Afghanistan.

Details of the assault on the remote tribal area of South Waziristan known as Pakistan's badlands are still emerging. Local media report that dozens of militants were killed when three drone missiles were fired on Taliban fighters as they gathered for a funeral for fellow militants. Those fighters had been killed earlier in a separate drone attack. [...]

The United States would like the area as flushed of Taliban as possible in advance of a new deployment of American troops just over the border in Afghanistan later this year.

Would the NPR report have been less sanguine if those killed had been American, British, Dutch or Israelis?

Cross post at Antimedius and /2009/06/double-standards-two-quotes.html>The Peace Tree.

UPDATE: Excellent post on NPRCheck - highly recommended - about NPR's biased and incomplete reporting on the attack in Afghanistan.

AJE has a completely different headline - 'US drone' hits Pakistan funeral and and story on the drone attack; no where is the word militant used. Unlike the NPR story, it has this:

'Pakistan officially objects to strikes on its territory by the pilotless US aircraft.

'Questioned about the reported attacks, a US defence department official said: "There are no US military strike operations being conducted in Pakistan."'

Maybe I am wrong, but frequently NPR just cuts and pastes the DoD press release, without question.

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