One of the top stories being covered throughout the globe is the allegation that the United States has stepped up secret planning for a possible airstrike on Iran. The source for this story is journalist Seymour Hersh.
Hersh's story appearing in the April 17 issue of the New Yorker magazine claims that President George W. Bush and others in the White House increasingly see "regime change" in Tehran as the ultimate solution to the nuclear confrontation with Iran, according to the Chinese government-controlled news service.
The White House believes that the only way to solve the standoff is "to change the power structure in Iran, and that means war," the Pulitzer prize-winning journalist quotes an unnamed senior Pentagon adviser as saying.
According to the Hersh report, the Bush administration has increased secret activities in Iran and has initiated a series of talks on its plans with "a few key senators and members of Congress."
The military believes a bombing campaign against Iran would humiliate the leadership in the Islamic state and lead the Iranian public to overthrow it, Hersh quotes a former senior defense official as saying.
The New Yorker magazine article also says that the US military is considering the possible use of a B61 nuclear "Bunker-Buster" bomb against Iran's main centrifuge plant at Natanz. The United States has said it has been seeking to settle problem of Iran's nuclear program through diplomacy, but the Bush White House has not ruled out an attack.
So that's the gist of Seymour Hersh's article appearing in the New Yorker, a magazine that's so snobbish even their cartoons are unfunny -- unless you're stoned on marijuana in which case everything gets a giggle.
British foreign secretary called Hersh's assertions "preposterous" and the US government claims the New Yorker article is grossly inaccurate.
"It's long on hype, short on facts. Consider the source of the article," one senior White House official told Fox News. Seymour Hersh has long been recognized as a shining star of America's left-wing intelligentsia.
Former military intelligence officer and NYPD detective Sidney Francis called Hersh's article the "rantings of a has-been investigative reporter on crack."
Hersh made a name for himself by breaking the story of the My Lai Massacre during the Vietnam War. The story shocked both pro- and anti-war Americans for its sheer brutality. Suddenly the reporter became a media star in big demand at all the radical-chic parties in Manhattan's upper-Eastside.
In 2002, Hersh attempted to relive his Vietnam War glory days by asserting that a secret US military unit has been "disappearing" people since December 2001. Of course, he could provide no proof to his allegations, but that didn't stop the liberal-left from quoting his words as fact. When Hersh made some false claims about the Iraq invasion plans, Pentagon adviser Richard Perle called him "the closest thing we have to a terrorist."
But it's when Seymour Hersh visits the halls of higher education that he shines the most. This is when he's able to take off his gloves and flex his leftist muscles. His diatribes are well regarded by the dwellers of academia's ivory towers, but they differ little from those of Michael Moore, Al "Stuart Smalley" Franken or Rosie O'Donnell.
During the initial march to Baghdad by the US military, when the generals decided to slow down their advance, Seymour started using the "quagmire" term so beloved of the liberal-left. When Abu Ghraib photos hit the front pages of the mainstream news media, Hersh said he knew American soldiers were torturing Iraqi prisoners. In fact, like his hero Sen. Ted Kennedy, he claimed the only difference in Iraq is that now Americans are doing the torturing rather than Saddam's minions.
Of course, no one asked Hersh how he could compare putting ladies' underwear on the heads of prisoners with Saddam's torture chambers and mass graves. While degradation and humiliation and threats are awful, they are a far cry from torture, maiming and systematic murder.
Here's what Seymour Hersh said during a keynote speech he gave at an ACLU event:
"I’ll tell you what an Israeli told me. And the Israelis as you know — a very tough, hard-nosed Israeli told me at one point, about all this — he said, you know, we hate the Arabs. This is a guy who spent his career in the intelligence service and, you know, his hands are bloody. He said, we hate the Arabs, and the Arabs hate us, and before 1948, we’ve been killing Arabs, and they’ve been killing us. But I have to tell you something, he said. We know somewhere down the line, we’re going to have to live with these people, much as we can’t stand them, they’re going to have to be our neighbors. And if we had done in our prisons to the Arabs what you have done to the Arabs in your prisons, we couldn’t live that way."
Not only does Hersh make up stories about the US military, he also makes them up about imaginary Israelis -- or Israelis too dumb to know their own history of fighting terrorism and their enemies. Mr. Hersh has a lot to learn from the "pajama bloggers" about accuracy.
Hersh, by his own admission, plays loose and fancy-free with the truth. New York Magazine writer Chis Suelentrop wrote the follow: "On the podium, Sy[mour] is willing to tell a story that's not quite right, in order to convey a Larger Truth. “Sometimes I change events, dates, and places in a certain way to protect people,” Hersh told me. “I can’t fudge what I write. But I can certainly fudge what I say.”
Seymour Hersh is the last person to revive radical-chic in New York or anywhere else for that matter.
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police. He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for a number of organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. He writes for many police and crime magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer, Campus Law Enforcement Journal, and others. He's appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc. His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com, Booksamillion.com, and can be ordered at local bookstores. Kouri holds a bachelor of science in criminal justice and master of arts in public administration and he's a board certified protection professional.