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Army 'psyops' at CNN

Posted By Geoff Metcalf On 03/03/2000 @ 1:00 am In Front Page | Comments Disabled

CNN employed active duty U.S. Army psychological operations personnel
last year, WorldNetDaily has confirmed through several sources at Fort
Bragg and elsewhere.

Maj. Thomas Collins, U.S. Information Service has confirmed that
“psyops” (psychological operations) personnel, soldiers and officers,
have worked in the CNN headquarters in Atlanta. The lend/lease exercise
was part of an Army program called “Training With Industry.” According
to Collins, the soldiers and officers, “… worked as regular employees
of CNN. Conceivably, they would have worked on stories during the Kosovo
war. They helped in the production of news.”

When asked if the introduction of military personnel into a civilian
news organization was standard operating procedure, one source said,
“That question is above my pay grade … but I hope so. It’s what we
do.”

The CNN military personnel were members of the Airmobile Fourth
Psychological Operations Group, stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
One of the main tasks of this group of almost 1200 soldiers and officers
is to spread ‘selected information.’ Critics say that means
dissemination of propaganda.

Cable News Network suffered a major embarrassment in the wake of the
‘Tailwind’ story it aired, alleging the U.S. government used lethal
sarin gas to kill suspected defectors during the Vietnam war. After
WorldNetDaily was the first news organization to expose the fraudulent
news production,

two CNN producers were fired and, eventually, CNN veteran reporter Peter
Arnett also was ousted. In that case, Retired Air Force Maj. Gen.
Perry Smith quit his long-time job as a military adviser to CNN.

What about now? Has the U.S. military been in a position to have
influenced directly CNN’s news reports about the crisis in Kosovo?

Collins claims a “handful” of military assets were assigned to CNN
for weeks “to get to know the company and to broaden their horizons.”
The Major asserts “they didn’t work under the control of the army.”

Several sources have confirmed the temporary outplacement of U.S.
Army psyops personnel started two or three years ago, and they have been
integrated into “various sectors of society.” The assignment durations
have been short-term up to one full year, depending on the mission.
When asked, “What were the missions?” responses to WND varied from “No
comment.”, “… need to know,” to smiles, and, in one case, an obscene
recommendation.

CNN is the most watched and widely viewed news outlet in the world.
During Operation Desert Storm, Saddam Hussein regularly watched CNN for
battlefield intelligence. The symbiotic, intimate relationship between
CNN and army psyops specialists has raised many eyebrows, with critics
saying it raises doubts about CNN’s journalistic integrity and
independence.

The Fourth Psyop Group has been involved in the Gulf War, the Bosnian
War and the Kosovo crisis. American psyops troops attempt to influence
media and public opinion in armed conflicts in which American state
interests are said to be at stake.

News coverage of the war in Kosovo, by CNN and other media, has been
criticized as “one-sided, overly emotional, over-simplified and relying
too heavily on NATO officials,” observed a report from the Netherlands.

CNN has not thus far commented officially on the allegations. Megan
Mahoney, a CNN spokeswoman recently said, “I don’t believe that we would
employ military personnel; it doesn’t seem like something we would
normally do.” However, now that the U.S. Army Information Service has
confirmed the news, Mahoney said she would have to contact CNN’s senior
officials.


Geoff Metcalf is a staff
reporter for WorldNetDaily.


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