The latest hullabaloo in Washington D.C. is over an article in the London Review of Books written by investigative reporter Seymour Hersh. The article attacks the government’s narrative around the killing of Osama bin Laden in 2011. Hersh claims that the Obama administration’s version of events is a hot dish of lies and that the Pakistani government had bin Laden under house arrest in Abbottabad for five years prior to the attack on the compound by American forces. They only decided to tell the U.S. where bin Laden was after years of pay-offs, intelligence feeds and “incentives.” The dramatic attack on the terrorist’s compound was a staged production with a pre-ordained outcome.
Salon has a good overview of Hersh’s piece here and the unsurprising attacks on the author from the slavish mainstream press. The author of the article raises the simple question: Who deserves the benefit of the doubt amid the accusations of lying being thrown around? The highly respected journalist who carefully annotated his article with sources or the Obama administration, which has lied through its teeth on numerous occasions and is doing so right now in its defense of the secretive Trans Pacific Partnership.
From its very earliest days when it wanted to continue Bush’s practice of keeping the White House visitors list secret to the Snowden NSA revelations to its attacks on whistleblower, the Obama administration has routinely lied or suppressed information in its manic desire to keep its actions behind the curtain and out of public view. The President who once promised us the most transparent administration in history has instead presided over one of the most secretive, shadowy operations Washington has ever seen.
Why aren’t more American’s outraged by this? Are we so cynical and turned off by politics that nothing fazes us anymore? We (the mainstream press and low information citizens) continue to defer to authority when there is a question raised, despite the fact that they have lied to us time after time after time. How bad will it have to get before we stand up and say “stop?”
If Americans are stupid enough to elect a Republican President in 2016, we’ll find out.