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rapes easy

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Mar 27, 2007

The New York Times, I mean. The following appeared in an "Editor's Note" in Sunday's paper:

The cover article in The Times Magazine on March 18 reported on women who served in Iraq, the sexual abuse that some of them endured and the struggle for all of them to reclaim their prewar lives. One of the servicewomen, Amorita Randall, a former naval construction worker, told The Times that she was in combat in Iraq in 2004 and that in one incident an explosive device blew up a Humvee she was riding in, killing the driver and leaving her with a brain injury. She also said she was raped twice while she was in the Navy.

Dry the starting tear. No Democrats were harmed in the making of this display of imaginative journalism. The detailed explanations are not without their amusing side, but let's skip to the end of the Times' clarifying remarks:

Based on the information that came to light after the article was printed, it is now clear that Ms. Randall did not serve in Iraq, but may have become convinced she did. Since the article appeared, Ms. Randall herself has questioned another member of her unit, who told Ms. Randall that she was not deployed to Iraq. If The Times had learned these facts before publication, it would not have included Ms. Randall in the article.

Emphasis mine. It turns out, according to America's newspaper of record, that "only part of her unit was sent [to Iraq]; Ms. Randall served with another part of it in Guam." The two places are easily confused: don't try to tell me you've never done it.

Ms. Randall's other adventures, and misadventures, are not so handily accounted for. In fact, I wonder if the New York Times is fully aware of the damage its willingness to find excuses inflicts on its own agenda. There was a time when it was all but impossible to doubt the allegation -- any allegation -- lodged by a member of an approved victim group against a member of a recognized oppressor group. Yet the hunger with which the prestige media pursue their search for a yet another Tawana Brawley, and their too-obvious relish once they have found her, have set back the cause of "voiceless victims" to pre-1960 levels. Sure, for years to come folks will be obliged to play along with the etiquette that demands credulity in face of contrary appearances, but their hearts will be speaking quite another thing.

Ms. Brawley, I was pleased to learn, has re-named herself "Maryam Muhammad." Now there's a gal who knows which side her brood is battered on.

(tip to James Taranto.)

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