RE: rumors and the original sources of them

Date: Wed Apr 28 2004 - 21:33:59 PDT

Following the call of Mike to move to more contemporary issues. I read
today in Haaretz:

"Remember Falluja
By Orit Shohat

During the first two weeks of this month, the American army committed
war crimes in Falluja on a scale unprecedented for this war. According
to the relatively few media reports of what took place there, some 600
Iraqis were killed during these two weeks, among them some 450 elderly
people, women and children.
The sight of decapitated children, the rows of dead women and the
shocking pictures of the soccer stadium that was turned into a
temporary grave for hundreds of the slain - all were broadcast to the
world only by the Al Jazeera network. During the operation in Falluja,
according to the organization Doctors Without Borders, U.S. Marines
even occupied the hospitals and prevented hundreds of the wounded from
receiving medical treatment. Snipers fired from the rooftops at anyone
who tried to approach.

This was a retaliatory operation, carried out by the Marines,
accompanied by F-16 fighter planes and assault helicopters, under the
code name "Vigilant Resolve." It was revenge for the killing of four
American security guards on March 31. But while the killing of the
guards, whose bodies were dragged through the streets of the city and
then hung from a bridge, received wide media coverage, and thus
prepared hearts and minds for the military revenge, the hundreds of
victims of the American retaliation were practically a military secret.

The only conclusion that has been drawn thus far from the
indiscriminate killing in Falluja is the expulsion of Al Jazeera from
the city. Since the start of the war, the Americans have persecuted
the network's journalists - not because they report lies, but because
they are virtually the only ones who manage to report the truth. The
Bush administration, in cooperation with the American media, is trying
to hide the sights of war from the world, and particularly from
American voters."

At the same time CNN publishes today:

"Iraqis polled: War did more harm than good but worth it

Nearly half the Iraqis polled in a survey conducted primarily in March
and early April said they believed the U.S.-led war had done more harm
than good, but 61 percent of respondents said Saddam Hussein's ouster
made it worth any hardships. Iraqi interviewers polled 3,444 residents
between March 22 and April 9."

Am I missing something here?! What is a rumor and what is a truth? How
should we behave as world citizens and CHAT theorists now? I read at
CNN also that Ted Koppel will read the names of the American soldiers
killed in Irak next days in Nightline. Would reading the names and
faces of civilians do any effect?

Sorry if I went too contemporary...


Quoting Mike Cole <>:

> I did not mean sources in the sense of people, Eugene. Sorry if I was
> unclear.
> I was thinking, for example, of claims about Luria and lie detectors.
> By an
> original source I meant The Nature of Human Conflicts. Even there, of
> course,
> there is no original (except the edition that finally came out last
> year in
> Russian which drew upon Luria's handwritten manuscript) since Gant
> says he
> cut from the manuscript he used for translation. But at least one
> does not
> have to depend descriptions of the work as if it were done at the
> request
> of the CHEKA or KGB, or whatever the secret police were called at the
> time.
> The same holds for the cross-cultural work in Central Asia. Except
> for a couple
> of brief reports in Science, the work was written 40 years later. But
> the
> 1976 translation is pretty faithful to the Russian edition and one
> can
> decide there is Luria was insulting the builders of communism or
> not.
> I am not pre-judging the outcome of the discussion. I simply think it
> unuseful
> to pass off second hand rumours as facts which then become the
> accepted
> context for interpretation in cases where better evidence is
> available. Of
> course, that exercise takes time, and we all are busy with other
> matters. So
> it may be just as well to pass on to topics of more contemporary
> relevance
> to xmca-ites.
> mike
> PS-- An excellent early source on the kholoz movement in (the)
> Ukraine is
> Fainsod's *Smolensk under Soviet Rule* which provides lots of support
> for
> Victor's characterization of the kind of person put in charge of
> that
> enterprise. Not original of course, but at least drawn from archival
> materials
> taken by the Germans when they took their turn slaughtering Ukrainian
> peasants.

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