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January 04, 2007

BREAKING: Will Michelle Malkin interview Jamil Hussein in an Iraqi jail?

Right wing blogger Michelle Malkin is going to Iraq.

Eason Jordan, the former head of CNN, offered Malkin a free trip to Iraq to report on the story the AP and (putative) eyewitness to atrocity Hussein.

The Associated Press cited Hussein as its only eyewitness to the immolation six Iraqis. In the original article, he was identified as "Jamal Hussein," an Iraqi police officer.

Today, the Iraqi government now confirmed that officer Jamal Hussein exists and says that he will be arrested for talking to the AP:

NEW YORK The Associated Press has just sent E&P the following dispatch from Baghdad, as it was about to be distributed on its wire.

BAGHDAD-- The Interior Ministry acknowledged Thursday that an Iraqi police officer whose existence had been denied by the Iraqis and the U.S. military is in fact an active member of the force, and said he now faces arrest for speaking to the media.

Ministry spokesman Brig. Abdul-Karim Khalaf, who had previously denied there was any such police employee as Capt. Jamil Hussein, said in an interview that Hussein is an officer assigned to the Khadra police station, as had been reported by The Associated Press.

The captain, whose full name is Jamil Gholaiem Hussein, was one of the sources for an AP story in late November about the burning and shooting of six people during a sectarian attack at a Sunni mosque.

The U.S. military and the Iraqi Interior Ministry raised the doubts about Hussein in questioning the veracity of the AP's initial reporting on the incident, and the Iraqi ministry suggested that many news organization were giving a distorted, exaggerated picture of the conflict in Iraq. Some Internet bloggers spread and amplified these doubts, accusing the AP of having made up Hussein's identity in order to disseminate false news about the war. [...] [AP/E&P]

According to the foregoing article, Hussein had been a reliable source for the AP for several years. Iraqi officials wouldn't say why Hussein's arrest has suddenly become an urgent priority. Hussein is currently at large, so Michelle Malkin may yet have a chance to track him down outside the Green Zone. However, the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior says it will drop all charges against Hussein if the Associated Press declines to pick him out of a lineup once they arrest him.

I must say, I admire Malkin's courage for going to Iraq at all. That said, she's already trying to weasel out of the difficult and dangerous mission Jordan proposed:

I spoke with Jordan by phone before Christmas to learn more details of his offer, which I'm not going to get into for privacy and security reasons. (He asked that his discussion be off the record.) I let him know that I had received invitations to embed with the military and planned to follow up on some of these offers concurrently with the investigation of the AP's reporting. Since our conversation, things have moved at a fast pace on the embed side. Over the holidays, my Hot Air colleague Bryan Preston and I received word that our embed applications had been approved. We have been busy preparing our families and ourselves for the journey. Our overarching goals are two-fold:

1) to report on how the troops perceive mainstream media coverage of the war (with a particular focus on the wire services relying on local stringers); and

2) to report on progress and interaction between U.S. troops and Iraqi Army trainees.

The "Jamil Hussein" story is one important item on our agenda, but not the only one. As Curt and other bloggers on this story have noted from the beginning, Jamilgate isn't just about "Jamil Hussein." Bryan and I plan to do as much on-the-ground reporting as we can to nail down unresolved questions--not only about Jamil Hussein and the Hurriya six burning Sunnis allegations, but also about the AP four burning mosque story discrepancies and the many other AP sources that our military has publicly challenged--including "Lt. Maitham Abdul Razzaq" and more than a dozen police officers listed by U.S. military spokesman Navy Lt. Michael Dean. There's also the issue of detained AP photographer Bilal Hussein. And we are looking forward to reporting first-hand on the security situation in Iraq outside the so-called "Green Zone" (International Zone) and talking to as many American and Iraqi Army troops with insights on these and other broader matters. [Emphasis added.]

So, Michelle Malkin plans to embed with US troops and look for Jamil Hussein on the side. So, if they don't get around to knocking on doors in the Red Zone looking for an AP source, that's just the way it goes.

Malkin's number one priority is to ascertain how US troops feel about the media. I wish her luck. I'm sure she'll find what she's looking for.

Update: You can help liberal blogger Terry Welch of the Nitpicker get the real story on his upcoming reporting trip to Iraq this summer.


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Yes, Michelle Malkin (assuming she actually does go to Iraq at all, wouldn't be surprised to see her whimp-out at the last minute) will find what she is looking for. One thing I've learned about conservative bloggers is that they're confirmation-biased like a motherfucker.

When (if) she ends up there, don't be surprised to find stories about how the civil war is overblown, Iraq is shaping up as a paradise with rivers of milk and honey, and the AP conducting sabotage as part of the evil Nazi space marine liberal agenda to destroy America.

Not sure if everyone has seen these videos of the US military in Iraq or not, but they are pretty amazing: Hopefully our 'surge' will not include too many of these types...

The report that Captain Jamal Hussein will be arrested for the "crime" of talking to AP reporters is yet another disturbing example of Iraqi government suppression of press freedoms.

Earlier this week, my blog dealt with the ongoing pattern of human rights abuses in this country that resembles Saddam Hussein's Iraq in a lack of freedom and brutality in almost every regard. "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss"-The Who

Can you imagine the tens of thousands of hours those loons have wasted on their little conspiracy theory? We should hope they spend all their time on such unproductive and clearly deluded pursuits.

Who BREAKING cares????

I only feel bad if MM has to learn what a tool she is the hard way...

I say let's let her go and wander around Baghdad by herself asking questions. What's the over/under on time she would remain alive?? I say 10 minutes. A beautiful oasis of democracy, indeed!

Malkin will do or say anything for publicity.

She doesn't care what we say about her, as long as we spell her name correctly.

With any luck they only gave he a one way ticket!

thats what the third person to die (for he is sure as dead)thanks to this bitch?

"Also on the right, Ed Morrissey of Captain's Quarters admitted, "This certainly tends to discredit the blogospheric attacks on AP if true, as well as the U.S. and Iraqi protestations." But he raised "the question about the Iraqi intent to arrest Hussein. Why would they want to arrest him if he told the truth to the AP?"

Because the Iraqi government is all about the truth, right?

Do check out INDC Bill for an example of a rightwing blogger who's actually doing the embedded journalism thing:

(Link offered without endorsement--he's just gotten started--but it is nice to see some of the 101st put their money where their mouths are, so to speak.)

hey, I can save her a ton of time.

1) to report on how the troops perceive mainstream media coverage of the war (with a particular focus on the wire services relying on local stringers)

They don't "percieve" mainstream media coverage. They spend their time soldiering, not picking apart professional news agencies that report news they don't believe. This question could better be asked of those who have come back.

2) to report on progress and interaction between U.S. troops and Iraqi Army trainees.

The way this is phrased, she already has her answer. If she wants a good case study she'll have to pick up a Vietnam history book.

....reads...the crazy post on Malkin's blog...

Looks like the goalposts have moved for "Jamilgate", which now, onstensibly, has nothing to do with Jamil.

The dissonance is deafening.

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