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Stringer Blows Whistle on Unethical LatAm Coverage

June 5, 2003

Narco News has obtained a copy of an email, sent this morning by El Salvador news correspondent Thomas Long to Newsweek reporter Seth Mnookin. The text is now published for you to read:

Long's email - we have been witness to what he describes all over Latin America - tells the real story about how the New York Times and other large media institutions simulate their "news" coverage from the region with "parachutists" - the "official" correspondents (desk reporters) who drop into Latin America's cities and towns briefly to be able to claim they "reported" the story from there, when all they do is mangle the good work of "stringers" - journalists who actually live in these countries - by rearranging the facts to place a US Embassy-spoon-fed-spin on the stories they take false credit for reporting.

We've been reporting about their unethical behavior for years: Sam Dillon, Juan Forero, Larry Rohter, Clifford Krauss… just to name the most embarrassing parachute poster-boys from the New York Times in our América. And we've also reported on unethical practice by prominent desk correspondents for other large, out-of-touch, media.

The aftermath of the Jayson Blair scandal has only just begun, despite the best efforts of some brown-nosing journos (who, after all, either still work for the Times, once worked for the Times, or dream of working for the Times, god knows why) to wish the whole mess would go away and maintain the myth that the Times is more than a greedy profit-seeking enterprise that long ago made a Devil's Bargain with Foggy Bottom: the State Department is the Times' most prolific undisclosed "stringer," providing so much of the propaganda that Timesmen package dutifully into "news."

The deal is simple: The Times (like other "newspapers") serves Washington and Wall Street's agendas in Latin America, and, in return, Washington and Wall Street (and sometimes foreign allied governments, like in Mexico City: right Sam Dillon and Craig Pyes?) do the leg work of getting the "documents" and "scoops" to the Times, only and always when the "story" discredits their political opposition in the region.

Kind readers, pay attention: At the very moment that the FCC tries to prop-up centralized commercial media, the industry's own vortex of corrupt practices is swallowing, forevermore, its illusory credibility with the public.

from somewhere in a country called América,

Al Giordano
The Narco News Bulletin

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