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Commentary :: DNC
Farce or Dirty Trick?
24 Jul 2004
The Bush administration's warning that "domestic" terrorists may be plotting to attack the media covering the DNC next week is either a pathetic hoax by some prankster, or something much more dangerous--an adminsitration dirty trick designed to make the cops and the media even more antagonistic towards protesters.
It’s hard to know whether to say we are entering dangerous times, or just an era of high farce.

The breathless news yesterday, trumpeted all over Fox, CNN, and the radio waves, that some unspecified “domestic” terrorists were planning an attack on media vehicles in Boston during the Democratic National Convention, is a case in point.

Granted that people on the left are frustrated that the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, John Kerry, is a dud on progressive issues, and particularly a massive disappointment on the matter of the War against Iraq, it’s hard to imagine any organization, left or right, trying to mess with the convention because of that.

Theses days there simply are no domestic terrorist groups on the left operating in the U.S. And it seems doubtful that right wing groups would see Kerry and the Democrats as particularly worthy of such an attack either.

That leaves us with two possibilities. Either this is just a hoax being played by some merry prankster, or it’s something more sinister—an attempt by the Bush Administration to raise the level of anxiety in the country, and perhaps to encourage both the Boston police and the media to take a harder line on DNC protesters.

The hoax theory seems quite plausible. Attacking the media is, after all, a pretty stupid idea to start with.. But the earnest, hyped coverage given to the story by the media itself, and the media’s own response, which included, reportedly, some media organizations hiring armed guards for their TV remote crews and offering flak jackets to their staff, has lent the story a credibility it doesn’t deserve.

As for the other theory, why not?

For the rest of this column, please go (at no charge) to This Can't Be Happening! .
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