Mickey Kaus is suspicious of that Pentagon claim that a satellite recording supports the U.S. version of the shooting involving Giuliana Sgrena:
CBS cited “sources” at the Pentagon, an institution with an intense interest in making Sgrena look wrong. Suspicion may be justified.
But, Mickey, the report is backed by the good name of CBS News!
Mickey also notes the Italian claim that cloud cover would have made it impossible for a satellite to record the event.
Nevertheless, Mickey argues that the L.A. Times placed itself in a very awkward position by deleting the reference to the satellite from two Reuters stories:
But simply excising the paragraph seems an iffy strategy for the Times to take in a story so widely broadcast. Now the paper has to either a) leave its readers uninformed about the satellite angle or b) make a big deal of the satellite story by reinvestigating it and printing the result. That’s a similar bind to the one the Washington Post got into when it refused to print Paula Jones’ initial charge of sexual harrassment by Bill Clinton–by doing so the paper effectively committed itself to finding out if the charges were true (with disastrous results for Clinton). … Isn’t it better just to say “CBS, citing Pentagon officials, reports X, ” and rely on the readers’ knowledge that not everything CBS or the Pentagon says is bankable? Even better, do it Bloggystyle: Violate the Fake MSM Air of Omniscience and simply say “CBS says this but we’re not sure.” …
(Characteristic Kaus emphasis in original.)
Kaus and I both await the L.A. Times‘s response:
P.S.: Let’s see how the Times responds to Patterico’s pestering. Maybe they’ll get huffy and defensive! …
You never know . . .
P.S. Meanwhile, a reader writes to say:
The satellite angle is bogus, I believe, because that sort of rapid-fire multiple exposures in darkness is not characteristic of the capabilities of space platforms — and they ARE exactly what airborne platforms do routinely and efficiently. Space stuff is usually used for wide-area scanning for missile launches, or close-in investigation of surface features in airspace that is otherwise denied to US vehicles. Why waste an expensive space asset when JSTARS or a drone could do it better for one ten thousandth the cost?
I have no idea whether this is correct or not — what do I look like? a journalist? — but I throw it open to you, the readers, for discussion and dissection.