Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Something's fishy at the Christian Science Monitor

Or at least in Jaroslaw Adamowski's reporting on Romney's visit to Warsaw. This quote in particular caught my eye;

Former US President George W. Bush proposed a plan for establishing
an anti-missile defense system in Poland, which Poles welcomed as
additional border security. President Barack Obama has since
abandoned this plan, displeasing many Poles.

Poles welcomed the US missile shield and many of them were displeased when Obama abandoned it. This is someone's opinion masquerading as fact. Not only is it opinion, it's flatly wrong.

In an essay published in 2007 Polish think-tanker Lukasz Kulesa quotes an opinion poll result that showed 55% of Poles against the missile shield and 28% for. While Kulesa doesn't name the poll the numbers match one done by Angus Reid early in 2007.  Surveys done later in the summer show the percentage in favor diminishing as those against increase.

So instead of a blanket statement about the enthusiasm with which the Poles embraced the offer of American missiles on their soil ("which Poles welcomed") a truthful telling would have spelled out that while a minority of Poles agreed with the plan, more than twice as many were against it.

Can this kind of mis-representation be accidental? I don't think so. The intent is to promote a world view in which of course everyone would love to have US missiles stationed in their country, because nothing says "we're with the big dog" quite as eloquently.

What Americans find so difficult to comprehend is that the club of those wanting to line up with "the big dog" shrinks constantly.

As for the CSM, it's sad to see the once prestigious title stoop to this kind of shabby non-journalism.

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