December 14, 2005

Did NY TImes Bias Lead to "Wishful Thinking" On Bogus Forged Ballots Story?

Late last night, the NY Times decided to run a story alledging major ballot fraud on the eve of the Iraqi elections:

Less than two days before nationwide elections, the Iraqi border police seized a tanker on Tuesday that had just crossed from Iran filled with thousands of forged ballots, an official at the Interior Ministry said.

The tanker was seized in the evening by agents with the American-trained border protection force at the Iraqi town of Badra, after crossing at Munthirya on the Iraqi border, the official said. According to the Iraqi official, the border police found several thousand partly completed ballots inside.

The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly, said the Iranian truck driver told the police under interrogation that at least three other trucks filled with ballots had crossed from Iran at different spots along the border.

But there is one problem with the Times article... the single-sourced story appears to be totally false:

The head of Iraq's border guards denied police reports on Wednesday that a tanker truck stuffed with thousands of forged ballot papers had been seized crossing into Iraq from Iran before Thursday's elections.

"This is all a lie," said Lieutenant General Ahmed al-Khafaji, the chief of the U.S.-trained force which has responsibility for all Iraq's borders.

"I heard this yesterday and I checked all the border crossings right away. The borders are all closed anyway," he told Reuters.

The NY Times, bastion of the liberal press in America, appears to have pulled a Mary Mapes, wishing a story to be true instead of verifying it to be true.

Pinch... you have some explaining to do.

Note: Cross-posted to

Posted by Confederate Yankee at December 14, 2005 07:14 AM | TrackBack

Not suprising, sad, but not suprising.

Posted by: scgeecheegirl at December 14, 2005 07:30 AM

The NYT is looking for a Nobel in the category of best fiction...

I'd bet the liberadical blogs will go nuts with this "report".

Posted by: Old Soldier at December 14, 2005 07:57 AM

Good pickup, CY!

Posted by: William Teach at December 14, 2005 09:02 AM

The loons at the DU are going nuts over this. CNN and the others have picked up on it, and haven't even said that it might be false. Fox News did a piece, and mentioned quietly that it it might be false.

Even if it turns out to be true, I have to wonder why no one in the media or on the left is condemning Iran for meddling?

Posted by: William Teach at December 14, 2005 09:05 AM

I am sure I saw film of the truck on Fox this morning.

Posted by: davod at December 14, 2005 09:57 AM

PPS: Brig Gen Steve Alston just said on Fox that they have been running around all day trying to substantiate the story, but, so far, nada.

Posted by: William Teach at December 14, 2005 09:57 AM

The MSM and our democrat leaders - Kennedy,Kerry,Murtha have been trying for weeks to sabatoge the Iraqui elections. Let's hope they don't succeed and that Americans take note in OUR next elections.

Posted by: denise at December 14, 2005 10:46 AM

All Things Beautiful TrackBack 'The New York Times Caught Out....Again':

"The NYT fraudulently reported the story late last night alleging major ballot fraud on the eve of the Iraqi elections... "

Posted by: Alexandra at December 14, 2005 12:08 PM

If this isn't true then it's another case of the lefty MSM trying, yet, again to discredit an Iraqi election. Those chumps don't have a clue that they are on the side of the Iranian gov't that would love nothing more than expand their country and create that super-Islamic state that I've heard alot about.

Posted by: Christie at December 14, 2005 12:08 PM

This morning (14 December 05) NPR was reporting that the ministery said the story was not true BUT that the (who ever is in charge of the border) was still saying that the story is true.

Posted by: Lokki at December 14, 2005 12:21 PM

What possibly could be wrong with the NY Times people? Everybody learned when they were little that lying was and is not smart so what are they thinking about? Yes before, they could and did get away with their nonsense but now in the day of the blogger -why don't they get it? Even Mary Mapes is learning- the hard way but she'll get it soon- Also Dan has learned - check the facts- is there a simpler rule? Do tell us what rule Pinch is using! Hmmmm very interesting! Pat Kennedy

Posted by: Pat Kennedy at December 14, 2005 01:03 PM



Posted by: L. HYAK at December 14, 2005 01:38 PM

Newspapers are reducing their subscription costs and still losing readers. And, we know why don't we? Say good-bye to the Pink Lady.

Posted by: Richard at December 14, 2005 02:06 PM

Freedom of speech has been a monumental achievement over the history of our type of self-government. So many have added to the human cost and effort to get here, and the MSM does not want to join in its' expression of liberty.

Pravda had the same motivation didn't they. The difference is NYT and the others are on the outside now.

Posted by: Bill Browne at December 14, 2005 03:18 PM

This has gotta be a mistake. There's no left-wing bias in the media.

Is there? ;)

Posted by: reverse_vampyr at December 14, 2005 03:59 PM

Mary Mapes must have been hired in liew of Jason Blair, to fabricate a lie about the fake Iraqi ballots. Or maybe the DemonRATS from Washington State planted the fake ballots--probably from dead people or convicts.

Posted by: Collins at December 14, 2005 04:02 PM

*blink blink*

...Why is taken as a given that al-Khafaji is telling the truth? At best, it's unclear whether it happened, but the "single-sourced" denial is no more valid than the initial report.

Posted by: M at December 15, 2005 09:53 AM

Ths story is true, only the facts were wrong -- that is, the ballots were misidentified. These were the military mail-in ballots that the Democrats barred from the Florida 2000 Presidential election. They are transported in tanker trucks because they are still too toxic for the Dems to handle and they hoped to dispose of them in Iraq election so that they could fraudulently declare it a fraud also.

Posted by: Random Maniyak at December 15, 2005 10:03 AM

M. wrote: the "single-sourced" denial is no more valid than the initial report.

How so? The initial report was sourced to an unnamed official, whereas, the denial was sourced to an actual, identifiable person.

Posted by: Carter B. at December 15, 2005 12:02 PM

How so? The initial report was sourced to an unnamed official, whereas, the denial was sourced to an actual, identifiable person.

Ah, yes. Because anonymous sources always lie, and named sources always tell the truth. *headslap*


The disconnect here is staggering.

Posted by: M at December 15, 2005 12:09 PM

Let me translate "M" for you:

"I am far more willing to believe in a single anonymous un-named source, with zero physical supporting evidence, becuase it supports my political ideology."


What was that about a disconnect?

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at December 15, 2005 12:43 PM

CY's translation skills need work. I never said that the anonymous source had to be correct; you guys are the ones dealing in absolutes here.

Since you're using a report that's disputed and less than entirely clear to bolster your own political ideology, I'd say your grasp of irony could use a tune-up as well.

P.S. Nice of you to incorrectly assume that I'm a fan of Howard Dean. Paint with a broad brush much?

Posted by: M at December 15, 2005 02:36 PM

The big joke is how amazingly few reporters there actually are in Iraq. Sure it's dangerous, particularly for white Americans, but come on! Reporters have had dangerous missions before. Deal with it and stop reporting gossip and rumor as fact. How much effort does it take to write another "many say Bush lied" or the "check out how Bush seems to deal with low approval ratings" article?

Posted by: neocat at December 16, 2005 11:11 AM

Perhaps "M" would have been better off if he did his *headslap* after he pulled his foot out of his mouth......

Posted by: Elephant Man at December 16, 2005 12:13 PM

Q: Why is it good to have a Liberal passenger?
A: You can park in the handicap zone.

Posted by: Wildandcrzyguy at December 26, 2005 07:03 PM