Jesse Macbeth video goes viral (bumped)

posted at 12:16 pm on May 23, 2006 by Allahpundit

Clarice Feldman marveled yesterday at how quickly nonsense gets debunked these days online. Ah, Clarice: you haven’t looked at the top of the Google Video charts lately, have you? Despite the best efforts of some, nonsense thrives on the Internet. Which is why, despite the fact that MilBlogs has already blown barn-sized holes in its credibility, the Jesse Macbeth video has spread this morning to Information Clearing House and Mininova. If you see it anywhere else, e-mail us or leave a comment below and we’ll update. (Update: Radio host Jay Severin eats up Macbeth’s bilge with a spoon. See update below.) (Update: Totally wrong on Severin. That’s an attack site. See the update below.)

Reader Geoff B. tipped me this morning to a comment left in the Peace Films guestbook purporting to be from “volunteer social justice cameraperson” Terry Portinga, who agreed to host the video at (Update: the guestbook pages keep changing over there so the link no longer takes you directly to Portinga’s comment. You’ll have to click around and find it yourself.) Emphasis mine:

I am the citizen who put the Jessie Macbeth interview on my website. I am a volunteer social justice cameraperson/video editor. I did not film or edit Jessie’s interview yet I did put it on the site and I take full responsiblity for that. At present we have asked a number of veterans, those who know Jessie and those who don’t, to review the video and talk with Jessie. I am hoping to hear the first reports shortly. If Jessie’s claim to be a Ranger does not check out as I am hearing other citizens say is the case, I plan to still intensely follow up on whether the experiences Jessie claims to have had in Iraq are valid. If there is truth in Jessie’s story, whether he was a Ranger of not, we as citizens must know. So lets see first what the vetera**ay. I will let everyone know. If Jessie’s story is found valid, he will stay on this website. If Jessie is not a Ranger but his story checks out, I will pull the interview off the site but Jessie will be back in a new interview that has been verified. I’m new at all this so bear with me. We are all just citizens trying to get at the truth…

In the meantime, how about if someone goes to the video page with Ms. Eman Ahmad Khamas speaking and lets us know what they think. Listen to her talk about genocide… Dig around and read some of the articles about Ms. Khamas. Ok, I only have read one myself so far but hey, thinking is tough. But in a democracy of the people we have to think, like it or not. Case in point: It appears I should have been more critical regarding the Jessie Macbeth interview. But that is what freedom of speech is all about. Getting feedback, altering course with the help of other free voices and arriving at the truth.

…but only after you’ve already floated a video starring an apparently bogus Ranger that’s getting picked up on anti-war sites around the country. Anyway, I can’t wait to find out how he’s going to “verify” Macbeth’s claims. And if they’re looking for vets to “talk” to him, I’ll bet Smash, Greyhawk, and Blackfive would be only too happy to help. As one National Guard officer told me in an e-mail this morning, “I am hoping to catch this idiot at an anti-war rally, where I am going to make him repeat the Ranger creed.”

Who cares if he’s really a Ranger, though, right? What we’re after here are … larger truths.

Previous post is here.

Update: I wasn’t going to mention Macbeth’s alleged arrest record unless it was germane to this story. See-Dubya shows that it is. See-Dub also links to this op-ed in today’s Opinion Journal by a White House staffer, which should help Greyhawk get the ball rolling on his initiative to debunk urban legends about the war.

You know, if Macbeth plays his cards right, he might just earn himself a “Profile in Courage” award next year.

Update: Whoa, whoa, whoa. You weren’t actually about to celebrate good news, were you?

Update: Uncle Jimbo surveys the damage.

Update: They set out to smear American soldiers, but didn’t quite achieve their goal. Blackfive e-mails:

Positive Blowback?

I’m getting slammed with soliders submitting “real heroes” for the B5 someone you should know category…and interestingly, the subjects of the articles don’t want to discuss their heroism…Just put one up of a Major who was in a 13 hour firefight.

Follow the link. The irony of this video bringing traffic to milbloggers and attention to real soldiers might be such that I have to lie down to absorb it all.

Update: How bad has it gotten? Even the DUers are piling on.

Update: Brad Staggs of Just Citizens quotes Army spokesman John Boyce:

“Initial research by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg shows no Soldier with the name of Jesse Macbeth having ever been assigned to the Special Forces or the Army Rangers — which are, in fact, two separate disciplines. This appears to be some sort of hoax. No Soldier by that name at Fort Lewis to our knowledge, in the past, either. Of course, the line about “go into the Army or go to jail” is vintage TV script not heard since the 1960s. There are also numerous wear and appearance issues with the Soldier’s uniform — a mix of foreign uniforms with the sleeves rolled up like a Marine and a badly floppy tan beret worn like a pastry chef. Of course, the allegations of war crimes are vague, as are the awards the Soldier allegedly received.”

Update: There’s a rumor at DU that Macbeth has resigned from Iraq Veterans Against the War. There’s nothing on the IVAW website about it.

Update: Goldstein has been moved to poetry.

Update: Macbeth now has his own Wikipedia entry. As Bryan says, “get it while it’s accurate.”

Update: Unbelievable. Radio talk-show host Jay Severin falls for Macbeth hook, line, and sinker. [UPDATE: Totally wrong. That’s a Jay Severin attack site, not Severin’s own site. The jackass who’s attacking Severin is the one who fell for it hook, line, and sinker. My apologies.] And get a load of this on something called “Media Monitors Network” (note: not Media Matters). Quote: “Macbeth and other U.S. soldiers have no option but to engage in this kind of butchery.”

Also, strictly as a matter of biographical detail, Macbeth appears to have undergone a name change back in 1986. Bear in mind when you see the name that he was two years old at the time, so don’t go jumping to any stupid conclusions.

Meanwhile, the boss just got off the phone with the Army.

Update: Screw Loose Change detects a pattern.

Update: Reader Nighthaven has been digging with a backhoe and uncovers an outstanding arrest warrant for someone named Jesse Adam Macbeth in Washington state. Can’t say for sure if it’s one and the same guy, but the interview our Jesse gave to Socialist Alternative last month does place him in Tacoma.

Meanwhile, reader Geoff B. points me to a post at The War in Context alleging that the producer of the video is standing 100% behind Macbeth’s story — although he’s not going to try to verify it:

Terry now informs me that Randy Rowland — a Vietnam veteran and peace activist who produced the Macbeth interview — is “100% behind Jessie,” and that Randy’s “reputation is on the line and he is not wavering one bit.” However, according to Portinga, it is not Rowland’s intention to try and verify Macbeth’s information, even though Portinga himself believes that “verification is the only sure route to go.” In my response to Terry’s email, I wrote, “If Jessie Macbeth’s story is true, Randy Rowland is doing Jessie a huge disservice by not giving him the opportunity to respond to the accusations that are being made against him. The issue here for everyone is having the courage to find out the truth.”

Emphasis mine. Of course.

Update: They’re saying prayers at MilBlogs. Could Macbeth be a washed-out Marine? He did have some of the uniform details right.

Update: Two different people have e-mailed to say that Terry Portinga, owner of the Peace Films site, has announced he’s removing the video. Stay tuned.

Update: Peace Films is no more, the Macbeth video replaced by a lovely graphic of the planet around which PF’s disinformation is now traveling. Did Allah use one of his fancy capture tools to download it for use in tomorrow’s Vent? I’ll never tell!

Update: Iraq Veterans Against the War abandons ship. Michelle has the details:

Iraq Veterans Against the War recently learned of a video interview with Jesse MacBeth that directs viewers to IVAW’s website and phone number. IVAW was not made aware of the creation of this video program and our input on it was never sought by its producers. Jesse MacBeth is not a spokesperson for IVAW and any claims made by MacBeth about his service have not been verified. We are currently investigating these claims and will have a full statement pending its resolution.

Update: Reader Joe R. e-mails with a new Macbeth video sighting. It’s at Torrentspy.

Update: Iowahawk channels Macbeth. Worth it for the photos alone.

Update: As of 11 p.m., there’s not a single mainstream media account of this story on Google News.

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Jesse MacBeth…what a poetic name. “All the perfumes in Arabia will not sweeten this little hand…” (or your lying mouth.)

MaiDee on May 23, 2006 at 9:26 AM

Is there nothing better than a colonic, dear Allah?
I only wish I could be a Ranger, so I could ream this nancy boys’ arse, but alas….I am but a woman. A mere housewife and inactivist. It is destined to be but a vicarious experience for me. But you men who ARE Rangers, please, someone video tape the education of Stutterin’ Jesse for me. I need a reason to eat more popcorn.

Scherzophrenic on May 23, 2006 at 9:30 AM

Are you sure Dan Rather did not have anything to do with this video? The theory that a story could still be true after the documentation is proven false has been used already. It didn’t work for Dan and it doesn’t work here.

DJ Dubya on May 23, 2006 at 9:34 AM

The DUmmie FUnnies has chronicled in its latest edition how the DUmmies at the Democrat Underground bought into this fake Ranger story only to have to eat crow later.

pjcomix on May 23, 2006 at 9:43 AM

It doesn’t matter if Jesse is a bogus actor… his message is “true”… right?

At least that is what “they” choose to believe, regardless of the obvious facts to the contrary.

Lawrence on May 23, 2006 at 9:53 AM

The damage has been done. I am starting to read and hear more from both veterans and those serving that the objective of releasing this video was not whether it was true or not and it does not matter that it is being debunked everywhere. Just like the false Newsweek story about the Koran abuse at Gitmo it doesn’t matter that it is false, the Islamic world will use it to further foment outrage at America and all of the talking head liberals will just add it to all of the black helicopter stories they have.
So more American soldiers will be wounded or killed by insurgents who will believe this sort of story just as they revel in the latest video showing an IED attack on the troops. Liberals will not be happy until all of our men and woman in uniform are wounded or killed I guess. It sure seems to be their gameplan. Wheter it is Hillary giving aiming tips to snipers on weak spots in the body armor or Murtha telling everybody how eveel the military is or other “patriotic” vets claiming that WP (White Phosporus) is a chemical weapon they give more incentive to the enemy then any speech made by Bin Laden or Zawhiri because afterall it is our own people.
Folks I don’t like some of the current crop of Republicans in congress and would like to see them replaced with real Republicans but I pray every night that no Dem makes it back to congress or any position of power.

LakeRuins on May 23, 2006 at 10:31 AM

You could drive a semi through the holes in his story.

doingwhatican on May 23, 2006 at 10:32 AM

Excellent point. I hate the fact that retaliation will be aimed at our troops using these bogus charges as an excuse. I cannot imagine there being no accountability anywhere. Frustrating.

wytammic on May 23, 2006 at 10:39 AM

Someone should contact this website to out the fraud…

Enoxo on May 23, 2006 at 10:54 AM

Someone needs to make a video exposing the fraud, comparing the uniforms side by side, and telling his lies word per word. Then upload it on Youtube under “Jesse Macbeth”.

awijelek on May 23, 2006 at 11:19 AM

Enoxo… why didn’t you? Anyway, I pointed them here. It took like 2 minutes. Make the effort, man.

RolandHall on May 23, 2006 at 11:56 AM

I know these people are stupid–but how stupid do you have to be to pull something like this? Haven’t these moonbats learned anything? I suppose they will stop at nothing to disrespect our brave men and women in uniform. Also, is it me, or does this cat look too skinny to be a Ranger?

robblefarian on May 23, 2006 at 12:06 PM

“We are all just citizens trying to get at the truth…”

Yes Terry, and by posting the fake video you “erred in getting too far out in front of the news-cycle.” But you had to because of “the seriousness of the charge.”

And now that your guy’s been outed as a fake, we need to give him another chance to tell his story, because it’s “fake, but accurate.”

Spare us.

saint kansas on May 23, 2006 at 12:20 PM

It comes down to “Emotionally true” versus “Actually true”
When this MacBeth story strikes some Liberal as “Emotionally true” and they act, react and live by their emotions, to them it’s true.
Just like Cynthia McKinney: “I’m charged with being black in Congress.” Not actually true, and no-one hearing that thinks there’s actually a law, but emotionally it resonates with those who always have their “racism radar” working.
I’ll stick to actually true. Life is a lot calmer.

Doug on May 23, 2006 at 12:22 PM

I read through a bunch of comments at the DU. The stuff they say sure is funny. Some of the ones I like the best were the guy defending MacBeth’s poor uniform and another saying that the encoder is responsible for the mixup of the beret on the photo. The best posts at DU, though, are the ones saying that this whole thing is a Rovian conspiracy and that MacBeth and IVAW are being “rathered.”

Bodacious2182 on May 23, 2006 at 12:41 PM

DJ Dubya – good one!

now we know what Rather’s been doing since he retired, he’s got a “face lift” and calls himself Jesse Macbeth…

Richard Davis on May 23, 2006 at 12:44 PM

I just read the part where he “admitted” to hiding out in the mosque and then murdering the innocents and defacing their remains.
So I guess we could all agree that this would be a BAD thing right? … IF it actually happened?
Yet it’s exactly what our enemies have been doing, and the libs and the MSM are still calling them “insurgents” ???
So, if WE do horrible things we are in fact, Horrible!
On the other hand, if our enemies to horrible things we mustn’t rush to judgement! We must somehow remain…..objective???
Did I miss a meeting?

Gault on May 23, 2006 at 12:44 PM

Well he is a resident of Washington state, the folks who in recent history have managed to elect a Democratic governor after about half a dozen recounts, which are now in question, worked to prevent a statue of “Pappy” Boyington from being erected on a college campus, and give illegal aliens drivers licences.
Maybe they will put a statue of him instead.

LakeRuins on May 23, 2006 at 12:49 PM

OK. I contacted MacBeth’s probation officer in Graham County, Arizona. He confirmed what his court records appear to indicate: he is a current probation violator. I have sent an email to the Tacoma PD to keep an eye out. His probation officer, unfortunately, stated that unless an individual is in an adjacent state, they usually won’t arrest somebody for probation violations.

We can hope something is done, but don’t hold your breath.

tommy1 on May 23, 2006 at 12:54 PM

He’s a fake? Who would have thought? This shows how low the Anti-War Moonbats would go to parade a fake Ranger to fit their agenda.

Brah on May 23, 2006 at 12:55 PM

MacBeth has a current bench warrant out for his arrest in Washington.

Enoxo on May 23, 2006 at 12:55 PM

What I find truly disturbing is MacBeth’s moonbat supporters find his lies “commendable”. Are they so desperate for “heros” they would celebrate someone claiming to have committed war crimes?
When is Olberman going to air this video?

Patrap on May 23, 2006 at 12:57 PM

Good catch, Enoxo! Maybe we’ll get this scumbag off the street yet! I sent a ton of information along to the Tacoma PD, including the contact information for Terry Portinga, the filmaker, who should be able to tell them where Mr. MacBeth is currently residing.

tommy1 on May 23, 2006 at 1:02 PM

OK. Just contacted the Pierce County Sheriff’s office. Let them know that Terry Portinga should be able to tell them where Jesse Adam MacBeth currently resides.

tommy1 on May 23, 2006 at 1:13 PM

The best line yet on the liberal blog link was some idiot stating “Doing this kind of plant and then blaming others for doing it is the oldest kind of propaganda in the world.”


Jeez, they can’t even see the truth when it hits them in the face like a pie, can they? HAHAHAHA

Hey, maybe these people are related to the congressman named Jefferson who the FBI caught taking bribes. Wonder who set HIM up? Probably Republicans, Or Pelosi hired someone. AHHAHAHAHAH


This is fun.

clyde on May 23, 2006 at 1:20 PM

Serious question here. Is the MSM covering this at all??

JVelez on May 23, 2006 at 1:33 PM

Looks like he was also sued last year in Arionza by a real estate company.

Enoxo on May 23, 2006 at 1:46 PM

Don’t hold your breath, JVelez.

But on the other hand, why should they?

lauraw on May 23, 2006 at 2:09 PM

“If Jessie is not a Ranger but his story checks out…”

Or in other words, “even if the messenger is a fraud, don’t discount the message itself because I hate the troops and want it to be true.”

I love it! Somebody get Dan RaTHer and Mary Mapes on the phone.

Dave Shay on May 23, 2006 at 2:21 PM

Here is a question. Is little Jesse planing to use his “military experience” to start a political carrer? IF so, a video will not do. He needs to write a book…Where do I remember this from…lol….

robo on May 23, 2006 at 2:25 PM

clyde, of course they can’t see the truth. If they could they wouldn’t be members of the “Democratic Underground Moron Brigade” (DUMB)


RobertHuntingdon on May 23, 2006 at 2:29 PM

And it’s gone. is down, completely. All you get is a picture of a globe.

Hope someone saved a copy of the video.

Enoxo on May 23, 2006 at 2:34 PM

Should be a picture of Birnam Wood.

see-dubya on May 23, 2006 at 2:41 PM

very good point Gault:..” hiding out in the mosque and then murdering the innocents and defacing their remains.”
Gault on May 23, 2006 at 12:44 PM (about 14 above)
What he claims to have done IS what the Iraqi insurgents are doing, and Al Queda , and Hezbollah. If Macbeth had a turbin on and camels for a background, NO ONE would have paid attention to it. Some from the left would have cheered it.

A change of clothes and the story changes.

shooter on May 23, 2006 at 3:22 PM

This guy MacBeth is a dressed-up Muslim bad actor, plain and simple.

Recently the far-left Sundance channel has been airing a “documentary” (“Control Room”) on Al Jezeera’s “balanced” coverage of the Iraq war. Needless to say it is heavily slanted against the US, with the usual depictions of bleeding and dying civilians and kids, and harsh treatment of supposed civilians by American soldiers. In it, a Muslim Al Jezeera employee states that he has absolute faith that the American people will rise up and stop this “American Empire” from its evil doings.

Propaganda like this is obviously designed to do just that.

speed647 on May 23, 2006 at 3:31 PM

I found this video today, with a real soldier.

Vincenzo on May 23, 2006 at 3:44 PM

The DU comments are hilarious. You know it’s bad when DU commentors are linking to HotAir and BlackFive to make a point. The really good comments are the ones trying to support Dan Rather… How exactly he got in the conversation I never did quite understand.

high_desert_wanderer on May 23, 2006 at 4:39 PM

Because we’re waiting for Dan Rather to show us MacBeth’s Ranger School diploma, mwheh.

Tuning Spork on May 23, 2006 at 4:48 PM

Spawn of Rove strikes again. Who’da thunk it, and what madcap prank to make liberals look like fools will Karl pull next time?

In seriousness, all hail the power of the blogosphere. Imagine if this would’ve come out five, 10 years ago. There would be no possible way to unring the bell. Now? He’s toast within 36 hours of people getting ahold of it. Thanks, Buckhead.

scoobysnack on May 23, 2006 at 4:54 PM

Ten years ago the news outlets might have actually done their job. Today, its just

1)check drudge report
3)report with light sprinkle of liberal spin
4)show iraq war death toll

Vincenzo on May 23, 2006 at 5:07 PM

Who is the real enemy here? “We have identified the enemy and it is us”, well at least some of us.

docdave on May 23, 2006 at 5:43 PM

…Hey LakeRuins: That’s the LEFT side of Wash. state…Mostly refugees from the bay area…Good point, though…

Ben Here on May 23, 2006 at 11:23 PM

As of 11 p.m., there’s not a single mainstream media account of this story on Google News.

Eh, what are ya gonna do. It all happened so fast, the MSM never had a chance to get a hold on it. Maybe there really is a difference between what they do and what we do.

Tuning Spork on May 24, 2006 at 1:09 AM

As far as the MSM not picking up on it yet, give it time, Mary Mapes is probably running with the story as we speak. Since we haven’t PROVEN to her satisfaction that Jesse the Wannabe is lying, it’s obviously factually true.

Snake307 on May 24, 2006 at 12:38 PM

Did Jesse MacBeth plagiarize his “war crimes” from an episode of Lost?

Anyone remember that episode?

wordwarp on May 25, 2006 at 12:35 AM

This guy was probably a REMF (rear echelon mother f#*%$&%) who was never in a frontline combat unit. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was a cook or supply dude. No offense to those of you who were! :)


hoosier_federalist on May 25, 2006 at 3:28 PM