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FOX News Still Blaming Newsweek For Riots

Reported by Ellen - June 7, 2005

Apparently, neither the statement made by US Air Force General Richard Myers, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, that Newsweek didn't cause the riots in Afghanistan last month nor the Pentagon's report about five incidents of Koran desecration is good enough to dissuade FOX News from its idea that Newsweek caused the riots.

In a story long on details about the efforts made by US soldiers and police to show respect for the Koran and short on details about the Pentagon's admission last Friday about five instances of the Koran being "handled insensitively or damaged," FOX News still says that the Newsweek story "led to rioting and at least 15 deaths in Afghanistan."

FOX summed up the entire Pentagon investigation into Koran abuse in these two paragraphs:

Last Friday evening, the U.S. Southern Command, which has responsibility for Guantanamo Bay, released the results of an investigation by Brig. Gen. Jay Hood, which showed that while no credible evidence implicates any guard or interrogator of flushing the Koran, one guard admitted three months ago that his urine had splashed onto a detainee and his Koran through an air vent next to the location where the guard had relieved himself.

In all, the Pentagon probe cited five cases in which the Koran had been handled insensitively or damaged. One case, in July 2003, ultimately resulted in a contractor with "a pattern of unacceptable behavior" being fired.

Other than serving to discredit Newsweek a bit more, FOX evidently thinks there's no news there so let's just move along.

For a more comprehensive report on the subject, including the allegations that detainees may have been responsible for some of the abuse, see this June 3 Washington Post article.

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