NY Times Deceived Americans on WMDs and Iraq Once Again, This Time with Help From The Drudge Report

Last October, The New York Times ran a story about the effects of abandoned chemical weapons in Iraq from a program that was abandoned in the early 90s, and so had nothing to do with Bush Administration WMD accusations that were used to justify the 2003 invasion of Iraq. However, the “Paper of Record” (which played such a large role deceiving the public in the run-up to the Iraq War) gave the article a headline that read, “The Secret Casualties of Iraq’s Abandoned Chemical Weapons,” and that did not give any indication when the weapons were abandoned. This deceptiveness was compounded when the massively popular conservative news aggregation web site The Drudge Report linked to the story with a huge, top-level, even more deceptive headline that read, “NYT: PENTAGON HUSHED IRAQ’S USE OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS.”

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That was all it took for confirmation bias to take over, as conservatives all across the country leapt on the deceptive headlines (of course, not bothering to read the actual article) as a permanent talking point for claiming that it was right to invade Iraq all along, since Saddam was hiding weapons of mass destruction after all.

And now, three months later, we see the fruits of that deception. RT today reported on a new survey conducted by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind that found that, “4 in 10 Americans erroneously believe US found active WMDs in Iraq.”

“PublicMind noted that the discovery of degraded chemical weapons in Iraq – likely leftover materials from a program that ended in the early 1990s – might explain some confusion. The presence of these weapons was first reported in October 2014.”

Of course, it wasn’t the “discovery” itself that caused the confusion, but, once again, shoddy, unprofessional, and irresponsible (if not downright mendacious) journalism.

42 thoughts on “NY Times Deceived Americans on WMDs and Iraq Once Again, This Time with Help From The Drudge Report”

  1. The chemical weapons that were found were the rusting, leaking remnants of munitions provided to Iraq by the US during the Iraq – Iran war (1980-1988). That's why the Bush admin was so confident they would find WMD's. The USG – under Reagan, with assistance from Cheney and Rumsfeld – put them there. Sad that a large percentage of the US public is too young, too dumbed down, or too thoroughly brainwashed by propaganda to remember that.

        1. I wish they would find those pallets of 100's that ran up to about 8 billion we can't account for. Could help a lot of people with food and fuel over these cold months here in the states.

          1. If those pallets should ever be found (not likely), rest assured helping Americans with food and fuel will be the last thing it gets used for.

  2. This whole claim of the WMD not being found, and consequentially discrediting the war is amtaeur and silly. The cry of “where are the weapons” was started by ignoramos people (probably with an anti war agenda). Any scholar , or even half smart person knows that these sort of weapons are highly mobile and can be hidden on the spur of the moment , leaving no trace. When the US entered Iraq it was not to “find” the weapons nor was that ever expected. Only later was this question created out of thin air by people of dubious reputations. But since to average people it sounds reasonable to be able to find the weapons the cry of “where are they” picked up speed and took on a life.

    1. Sorry Conan, no matter how you try to twist it you can't change the facts. The US went to war with Iraq on the claim of the WMD's. Counterspin that for us conan
      You have a pretty low regard for the thinking capacity of scholars. Maybe it's because you are judging from your own perspective of what constitutes smart?

    2. I guess you don't know that the claimed manufacturing sites were analysed for residue of chemicals that are associated with the manufacturing of chemical weapons. Analysis Included the dirt floors and porous walls and ceilings. As a chemist, I can tell you that there is going to be residue. None was found. Therefore, there was no manufacturing at these sites.

      If you really think that the Iraqis were so capable of shifting around chemicals and completed WMD, you attribute a much higher level of competence than they ever demonstrated. Including in the Iraq war on Iran where tons of chemical WMD were simply lost.

      All manufacturing of Iraq WMD ended as of the 1st Gulf war. Massive efforts found nothing. After the 2ed Gulf war, Iraqis would have gladly taken the rewards offered by the USA to direct the US investigators to any that remained. Didn't happen because there were none.

  3. >'Sherlock' – Any scholar or even half-smart blogger knows that all evidence cannot disappear without a trace.

  4. Seems to me there are satellite images showing truck convoys headed into Syria moving weapons and a few letters from GI's to their families were published telling about the 'ammo' dumps they were ordered to blow up….history is being lost as the non-reporting aka propaganda continues unabated.

    1. Yeah. I guess the government and the military were so anxious to not find the WMD they claimed existed that they destroyed the evidence that they were correct? Really? You believe that?

      There were indeed Ammo dumps destroyed….they were conventional weapons dumps.

  5. 4 in 10 absolutely do not believe Iraq had WMD's as a result of a headline that was on Drudge less than a day.

  6. No, there were no WMD's in Iraq. Period!
    But what is much more important is that some people are getting away with saying that Bush2 and company "thought" there were. Let's work on finally getting over that nonsense!
    It's likely that most Americans now know the truth but the truth is just too painful to face. How could there be any mor evil crime against humanity than knowing all along and then proceeding to slaughter hundreds of thousands of Iraqi citizens?
    And btw, it's worth stating again that both wars against Iraq were for phony reasons. The first one was just for a 'different' phony reason.

  7. The weapons inspectors were there well before. They knew. They don’t care. They are our masters. We are their slaves. That is modern day America

  8. Read, "Reports by the US Senate's committee on banking, housing and urban affairs — which oversees American exports policy — reveal that the US, under the successive administrations of Ronald Reagan and George Bush Sr, sold materials including anthrax, VX nerve gas, West Nile fever germs and botulism to Iraq right up until March 1992, as well as germs similar to tuberculosis and pneumonia." from the Sunday Herald from Scotland, September 2002.

  9. After Gulf War I, Iraq destroyed its WMD's. UN weapons inspectors spent years searching for those weapons and never found them because they weren't there. When the weapons inspectors complained about security following them around, they were expelled. Right before Iraq War II, Saddam Hussein said the weapons inspectors could return with no security following them. Bush said that wasn't good enough and declared war on Iraq anyway. He said the coalition forces would be the weapons inspectors.

  10. Want news you have to go international. Want propaganda and entertainment watch and read US news. 7 news wires control everything that is reported. Spin doctors for the republicans and military industrial complex know how to push everyone's buttons. How else can a multi trillion dollar war be based on a lie and no one in in prison or facing war crimes no one was criticized at the time and when all was revealed, nothing done about it, If only the press paid the same attention to this as they did for Clinton's digression. There US media is circus for the mob and those things related to money and power and it's abuse are totally ignored.

    How can the military loose billions in the Iraq war, cash gone missing. Mystery after Mystery and zero accountability in stuff that matters. The US media is a slave to big money and power. Regardless of the outrage it's glossed over. No one's heads roll. This means being complicit is a-OK, not consequences that can't be managed. The media need to shine a light on these things, but sadly they are complicit by inaction and frankly are not doing their job in protecting the democracy.

    How can a vice president have massive affiliations with Halliburton who was one of the principle beneficiaries or the Iraqi war. How is it that the CIA could import cocaine into the US for weapons and not one figure is in prison. How is it the reporter who broke the story, committed suicide some time after being character assassinated and pushed out of journalism, by shooting himself twice in the head. Don't figure but now one cares. How can support for Israel continue when we know peace has never been their agenda which makes the US look like immoral puppets. Frankly if you want peace of mind the best news is no news. Until the US people defend their democracy and demand better loudly and often freedom is being bled away a peace at a time and social progress is poisoned But as blind patriots, you get what you accept. Money is the root of all evil, and law has replace morality often leading to outcomes totally shameful by anyone's standard.

    Until the media grabs on to and doesn't let go of these immoral issues, until democracy defended by the majority and these issue matter, the ship is adrift. And the systematic erosion of freedom is certain. Homeland security, in Germany they called them the SS, too much power. At what point does the executive office become subservient and irrelevant like that of the Queen of England.

    If you put a frog is boiling water it will jump out. But put the frog in warm water and set it on the stove and it's content to eventually boil and die. At some point there will be no freedom or what is freedom will be redefined to some sort of pablum that's sell able. Only a active and independent media can lead the push back and only if the people care. Only a strong light will make the cockroaches run.

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