It’s a must-read and it’s long so I won’t waste your time here. Suffice it to say, if in fact they got duped by a jihadi stringer, their sin is like Reutersgate squared.
Let me quote this because it deserves to be quoted:
I learned something important about reporting from Iraq in general. Big Media journalists often rely on sources that are unreliable. They don’t tell you the pressures these sources might be under from insurgents and terrorists. They refuse to tell you who their stringers are, so we can assess their motivations. They get quotes from doctors who seem to see only civilian deaths. If the military has been given insufficient time to respond to an allegation, these journalists don’t check with the military later, to verify that the story they’ve written is accurate. And sometimes, as here, their stories are completely at odds with numerous other accounts reported in other press outlets — and they seem to have no interest in finding out why.
It’s very sobering to realize that much of the news coming out of Iraq is completely unreliable. And it’s a bigger issue than whether the L.A. Times got a single story wrong on November 15.
As you read, keep a running tally of all the people who aren’t allowed to talk about the incident for fear of some sort of retribution. Hint: they’re not all Iraqi.