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    Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    I could not resist the title. Black and White .......



    Published on Wednesday, May 11, 2005 by UExpress.com
    Black and White and Full of Crap
    by Ted Rall

    One year ago the American media was pushing the Pat Tillman story with the heavy rotation normally reserved for living celebs like Michael Jackson. Tillman, the former NFL player who turned down a multi-million dollar football contract to fight in Iraq and Afghanistan, became a centerpiece of the right's Hamas-style death cult when he lost his life in the mountains of southeastern Afghanistan. To supporters of the wars and to many football fans, Tillman embodied ideals of self-sacrifice and post-9/11 butt-kicking in a hard-bodied shell of chisel-chinned masculinity on steroids.

    Tillman's quintessential nobility, we were told, was borne out by the story of his death--a tale that earned him a posthumous Silver Star. Whether you were for or against Bush's wars, Americans were told, Tillman's valor showed why you should support the troops. Young men were encouraged to emulate his praiseworthy example.


    Several thousand mourners gathered at Tillman's May 3, 2004 memorial service to hear marquee names including Arizona Senator John McCain called upon all Americans to "be worthy of the sacrifices made on our behalf." "Tillman died trying to save fellow members of the 75th Ranger Regiment caught in a crush of enemy fire," the Arizona Republic quoted a fellow soldier addressing the crowd. Tillman, said his friend and comrade-at-arms, had told his fellow soldiers "to seize the tactical high ground from the enemy" to draw enemy fire away from another U.S. platoon trapped in an ambush. "He directly saved their lives with those moves. Pat sacrificed his life so that others could live." It was, as the Washington Post wrote, a "storybook personal narrative"--one recounted on hundreds of front pages and network newscasts.


    It was also a lie.


    As sharp-eyed readers learned a few months ago from single-paragraph articles buried deep inside their newspapers, Pat Tillman died pointlessly, a hapless victim of "friendly fire" who never got the chance to choose between bravery and cowardice. As if that wasn't bad enough, the Washington Post now reports that Pentagon and White House officials knew the truth "within days" after his April 22, 2004 shooting by fellow Army Rangers but "decided not to inform Tillman's family or the public until weeks after" the nationally televised martyr-a-thon.


    It gets worse. So desperate were the military brass to carry off their propaganda coup that they lied to Tillman's brother, a fellow soldier who arrived on the scene shortly after the incident, about how he died. Writing in an army report, Brigadier General Gary Jones admits that the official cover-up even included "the destruction of evidence": the army burned Tillman's Ranger uniform and body armor to hide the fact that he had died in a hail of American bullets, fired by troops who had "lost situational awareness to the point they had no idea where they were."


    "We didn't want the world finding out what actually happened," one soldier told Jones. A perfect summary of the war on terrorism.


    The weapons of mass destruction turned out to be a figment of Donald Rumsfeld's imagination. The Thanksgiving turkey Bush presented to the troops turned out to be plastic, as much of a staged photo op as the gloriously iconic and phony toppling of Saddam's statue in Baghdad by jubilant Iraqi civilians--well, actually a few dozen marines and CIA-financed operatives. So many of the Administration's "triumphs" have been exposed as frauds that one has to wonder whether that was really Saddam in the spider hole.


    We shouldn't blame the White House for producing lies; that's what politicians do. But we expect better from the media who disseminate them.


    Case study: the Washington Post's dutiful transcription of the Jessica Lynch hoax. Played up on page one and running on for thousands of words, the fanciful Pentagon version had the pilot from West Virginia emptying her clip before finally succumbing to a gunshot wound (and possible rape) by evil Iraqi ambushers, then freed from her tormentors at a heavily-guarded POW hospital.


    Like the Pat Tillman story, it was pure fiction. Private Lynch, neither shot nor sexually violated, said she was injured when her vehicle crashed. She never got off a shot because her gun jammed. As she told reporters who were willing to listen, her Iraqi doctors and nurses had given her excellent care. She credited them for saving her life. In a weird sort of prequel to the shooting of an Italian journalist, they had even attempted to turn her over at a U.S. checkpoint but were forced to flee when American troops fired at them.


    In all of these examples, editors and producers played corrective follow-up stories with far less fanfare than the original, incorrect ones. To paraphrase "X-Files" character Fox Mulder, the truth is in there--in the paper, on TV. It's just really, really hard to find.


    Readers of the American press and viewers of American radio and television are likelier to see and believe loudly repeated lies over occasionally whispered truths told once or twice. As a result of the reverse imbalance between fact and fiction, the propaganda versions of the Tillman and Lynch stories, the staged Saddam statue footage, and the claim that Iraq had WMDs are all believed by a misled citizenry that votes accordingly.


    For journalists supposedly dedicated to uncovering the truth and informing the public, this is exactly the opposite of how things ought to be. Corrections and exposÚs should always run bigger, longer and more often than initial, discredited stories.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    HUbison's Avatar
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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Ted Rall
    Perfect example of "journalism is only as good as the journalist". Ted Rall is no more of an investigative reporter than Howard Stern! In fact, Stern is better than Rall, at least Stern knows he's there merely for entertainment! Rall is a left-wing cartoonist (that's literal, btw) who simply writes cartoons that launch his unadulterated leftist views.

    The guy is the intellectual equivalent of a retarded mule.

    As with several conspiracy theorists, he took 1% truth and combined it worth 99% garbage to create what SOME see as an enlightenment.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

  3. #3
    RamTime Guest

    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Certainly you are refering to the conspiracy theory that has less then %1 of evidence of Hijackers with box cutters hijacking those planes. Tilman was killed because he was going to Campain for Kerry. He was going to expose Bush's war in Iraq as being illegal. As close as the election was projected to be that would have been enough to oust Bush and he knew it. Suddenly he got dead. Read what Tilmans parents are saying about their son's death. Do your own investigation. BTW that article has an error in it. Tilman reentered the military to go after Bin Laden in afghanistan and was furious about going to Iraq to fight for oil under the umbrella of terrorism. Killing as many terrorists as you can to fight terrorisim makes about as much sense as killing as many mosquitos as you can to fight maleria.
    Last edited by RamTime; -01-24-2006 at 10:28 AM.

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    RT, my friend, believe what you want to, but common sense dictates that all of this would require a net of co-conspirators so deep that, surely at least 1 would have leaked by this point.

    The truth is there is never a shortage of people with an agenda. The current agenda of popularity is to tie every bad thing in the world to Bush. The individuals who are writing this stuff have that same agenda, and will stop at nothing to shout it from as many moutaintops as possible. But there's a reason these theories are relegated to remote web sites and chain e-mails.....there's no basis. It's like the saying goes, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. Somebody finds a speck of truth and proceeds to draw up ornate extrapolations that get more and more fanciful.

    For example, as a CPA, I've seen no shortage of people who think they've found some magical clause in the U.S. Tax Code that releases them from their tax liability. They will find some specific code that relates to the administration of estate tax or something that is relevant only to Puerto Rico and Guam, and then create their own scenario where they think they don't have to pay taxes. The problem is......they are wrong. They don't know the whole absolute truth. They find one sound principle then mis-apply it to create a fallicy.

    By all means, RT, keep searching. And I'm serious, when we stop searching, we become obsolete.....so for that I applaud you. However, don't get too tied into the theories that have been presented to you.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Quote Originally Posted by RamTime
    Certainly you are refering to the conspiracy theory that has less then %1 of evidence of Hijackers with box cutters hijacking those planes. Tilman was killed because he was going to Campain for Kerry. He was going to expose Bush's war in Iraq as being illegal. As close as the election was projected to be that would have been enough to oust Bush and he knew it. Suddenly he got dead. Read what Tilmans parents are saying about their son's death. Do your own investigation. BTW that article has an error in it. Tilman reentered the military to go after Bin Laden in afghanistan and was furious about going to Iraq to fight for oil under the umbrella of terrorism. Killing as many terrorists as you can to fight terrorisim makes about as much sense as killing as many mosquitos as you can to fight maleria.
    The most successful way to fight terrorism is to take away the reason for their rage or the reason that rage turns to mass murder and violence. Short of giving these guys what they want, which is a global Islamic caliphate or those lands which formed part of the capliphate until middle ages.

    Presumably though, you don't see any reason to do this as you don't feel that they are responsible for much of anything, certainly not the WTC attacks.

    In fact, your argument would lead us to believe that there are no such things as terrorists at all, merely gangs of CIA sponsored bandits brawling with each other in the Hindu Kush, only pausing long enough to assemble for the glamorous broadcasts they send to their adoring public in the west (They apparently forget to take their watches off however which does take the shine off somewhat). Meanwhile, the US government is slaughtering their own citizens and innocents all over the world and pinning the medals on these gangs of hopeless primitives.

    Islamic fundamentalism, it would seem is to be considered as nothing more than a harmless stone age sham or convienient front, as nothing less than America itself could mount an attack on American soil, certainly not mere arabs with box cutters.

    Tillman was killed because he was going to campaign for Kerry? Tillman was killed because he was going to expose the illegal nature of the war in Iraq?

    Sorry RT, but it doesn't take an MA in Legal theory and International law to work out that the lack of a UN mandate made the decision to go to war on Iraq highly dubious and arguably illegal. I cannot understand the justification for killing one soldier out of hundreds of thousands who thought the premise for war was weak, or what you could could possibly gain by doing so when you had international statesmen and domestic politicians in the UK and the US with far higher visibility having argued the same thing for months.

    On a separate issue, once you are enrolled in the armed forces of any country, you accept that you may be required to be part of an intervention you don't agree with and consequently risk your life in furtherance of a cause or causes you find objectionable.

    I have a very good friend who served in the US army Rangers , and he often commented to me that he found the attention received by Tillman for his decision to enroll a little hard to take when there were thousands of fellow Americans who had taken that same decision and died just the same.

    Friendly fire kills a lot more people than the US army will ever admit to. It's not something to be proud of and they have a dreadful record for doing it.

    By the way, I live in Hong Kong on a hill situated in a small island above a Chinese fishing village, and are plagued by several different types of mosquito. There's one which carries Dengue fever otherwise known as 'Bone breaking disease', one which carries Japanese Encephalitis, and one which carries yellow fever.

    The governments standard and widely accepted method of dealing with them is to kill them by way of fumigation, chemical spray and reproductive inhibitors.

    Admittedly, Malaria isn't a problem here.

    RT, look by all means, search for truth, hunt for answers but be a little more discriminating.
    Last edited by Fat Pang; -01-25-2006 at 03:23 AM.

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison
    For example, as a CPA, I've seen no shortage of people who think they've found some magical clause in the U.S. Tax Code that releases them from their tax liability.
    Speaking of taxes, some interesting reading is -

    Irwin Shiff's books:

    The Federal Mafia, How It Illegally Imposes and Unlawfully Collects Income Taxes

    and The Biggest Con

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Quote Originally Posted by adarian_too
    Speaking of taxes, some interesting reading is -

    Irwin Shiff's books:

    The Federal Mafia, How It Illegally Imposes and Unlawfully Collects Income Taxes

    and The Biggest Con
    Yes, exactly what I'm talking about. People like Shiff make buttloads of money by selling lies to those willing to believe them. Federal pens are filled with people who still think idiots like Shiff are correct, even after they have been convicted of tax evasion.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison
    Yes, exactly what I'm talking about. People like Shiff make buttloads of money by selling lies to those willing to believe them. Federal pens are filled with people who still think idiots like Shiff are correct, even after they have been convicted of tax evasion.
    Whoa. Left the barn door open and let the horse out again.

    Yes, Shiff makes money (I presume) selling his books. Is his contention that the constitution establishes only gold and silver coin as "lawful money" a lie? Well, that's one issue.

    Is his contention that early paper money imprinted with "US Note" as opposed to "Federal Reserve Note" and the text on the notes as being "redeemable in lawful money" as opposed to "legal tender" an implicit acknowledgment by the goverment that paper money wasn't "lawful money" a lie? Oh, that's another issue.

    Does the fact that some people go to jail for their beliefs make them stupid or idiots? Perhaps. Perhaps not. There will always be discussion on what is the most appropriate way to act on one's beliefs.

    History is full of laws that weren't right, were popularly accepted, were civilly disobeyed and where lives were ruined by being punished by a system that was weighted against them from the onset.

    Just because someone was convicted or not, is in jail or not, doesn't mean truth and justice was served. It just is what it is.

    No one has to believe what Shiff argues. And if they do, they don't have to act on it in a way that penalizes them for it. But likewise, one shouldn't discredit them for the fact that they did.

    There once was a tea party. Ever since, the system has been maintained to prevent another one. It just is the way it is. Is it a deliberate, conspiratorial effort at maintaining it? You decide.

    But one instructive recent lesson in the role of the media in selectively publicizing news is the "Miracle of 12 miners found ALIVE in WV." Misinformation? Disinformation? Or just bad information? Doesn't matter. What does matter is the fact that that story became "news". It became a "fact". It became part of global legend. But as it turned out, just because it was in the news, in print, it did not make it truth.

    Ramtime's thread may have gotten closed because it devolved to name-calling. But that misses the point. The point is that unanalyzed ideas becomes prisons of the uncritical. People don't need to be convicted by a Tax Court to be a prisoner, they just need to follow the party line unquestioningly to be as imprisioned completely as if by brick and mortar.

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    The point is that unanalyzed ideas becomes prisons of the uncritical. People don't need to be convicted by a Tax Court to be a prisoner, they just need to follow the party line unquestioningly to be as imprisioned completely as if by brick and mortar.
    Yet oddly enough, those people who do pay their taxes don't get man-raped nearly as much as those who go to a "brick and mortar" prison.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Just because someone was convicted or not, is in jail or not, doesn't mean truth and justice was served. It just is what it is.
    Call it whatever you like, the premise is simple: If you commit a crime and are convicted, you go to jail. If you don't commit a crime, you don't go to jail.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Quote Originally Posted by HUbison
    Yet oddly enough, those people who do pay their taxes don't get man-raped nearly as much as those who go to a "brick and mortar" prison.
    Quite an unbecoming retort. I think your beloved statistics will show that there are more tax-paying people raped outside of prison as opposed to inside.

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Quote Originally Posted by adarian_too
    Quite an unbecoming retort. I think your beloved statistics will show that there are more tax-paying people raped outside of prison as opposed to inside.
    As a percentage, I highly doubt it.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    If you listen to the Wasington post,your not getting the truth,They report the truth only if it suits their
    Slant.

    Try reading the Washington times instead.Its a reality wake up.
    My heart beats crazy and my blood runs wild

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Fat Phang eloquently summed up much of how fratricide occurs, like it or not, and how we feel as soldiers. In addition, what Pat Tillman did by originally signing up was quite patriotic in and of itself. However, as a soldier you don't get to pick and choose which battles that you get to wage. He received way too much attention in my opinion. I was proud that he joined our ranks. However, once on board he was no different than any of us and it should have been the end of his publicity.
    I am not so sure of the story about speaking out or campaigning for Kerry. We are not allowed to campaign or publicly choose sides. We are prohibited from doing so. He could not just quit or get out in order to do so either. He has an enlistment obligation and as a ranger he would have been on the stop loss list; meaning that he would not have been allowed to get out anyway. They can extend us beyond our current obligation through the stop-loss program. I just don't buy it. He may not have been happy about Iraq, but who cares?? None of us like war, after all we are the ones that have to leave our families, country, and way of life to fight the war. We train for it should it ever happen, but it does not mean that we love it. We do as we are told, not as we want. That is the way of life in the military. If he could not embrace that ideal, then he did not belong to begin with.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Re: Black and White and Full of Crap - the Pat Tillman story

    Ramtime said,

    'Killing as many terrorists as you can to fight terrorisim makes about as much sense as killing as many mosquitos as you can to fight maleria.'


    That has got to be one of the dumbest things I've read on these boards.

    [Ramtime's wife, "Ramtime, there are killers in our house, and they just killed our neighbors!" "Well honey, we have to understand why these poor chaps chose to be killers, feel their pain, and try to help them."]



    If you want to fight terrorism, the first thing you gotta do is kill them. Thank goodness the people who ran and run this country, from Pres. Clinton, and Bush, do not think like Ramtime.

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