Alexander Cockburn and the Alternative Media Giants on 9/11
This post is cross-posted at indoctriNATION.
I received an email earlier today from a reader suggesting that I balance TheFilter.ca’s coverage of 9/11 with an Alex Cockburn article posted to Znet called “The 9/11 Conspiracy Nuts: How They Let the Guilty Parties of 9/11 Slip Off the Hook”
I thought I would post my response, simply because it expresses some of the frustration I’ve had over the last week with much of the alternative media’s coverage of the fifth anniversary of 9/11.
Thanks for your interest in the site, and your story suggestion.
I had actually read Cockburn’s article when it was put up on Counterpunch, and some similar pieces from other Big Alternative sites, and decided to pass on posting them. Reading Cockburn’s again, I felt the same way I did about it the first time around: disappointed, but not surprised.
The article is one of the most hollow, dishonest outbursts that I’ve seen in a long time on an alternative news site and frankly, it really knocks Counterpunch, Znet, and the Nation (who also published it), down a few pegs on the integrity board. It is a truly embarrassing example of intellectual bullying.
Just to get it out of the way, I haven’t made up my mind completely on the whole 9/11 thing, but I feel that many of the intellectuals, journalists, families of the victims, and other citizens, who I’m assuming Cockburn means when he writes “Nuts”, are asking many of the same questions about 9/11 that I want answered, and are getting nothing but sorry excuses from the government and shoddy hack-jobs from yellow journalists.
Cockburn’s flimsy rhetoric, name-calling, unconvincing anecdotes, and claims of ‘distraction from more important issues’ are long-stale logical fallacies that anyone who’s ever taken a Grade 10 debate class would find insulting.
The article is nothing more than an ad hominem attack I would expect to find on FOX News instead of Znet, where Cockburn attacks those presenting evidence instead of the evidence itself, or rambles on about things that have no direct relation or insight into 9/11. Completely absent from the article is any mention of the most important theories of the 9/11 Truth Scholars and other truth-seekers, like the collapse of WTC 7, or Dr. Steven Jones’ revealing research into the towers, etc.
Although I respect much of Cockburn’s work and accomplishments, I have always taken exception to his ridiculous assertions that the Warren Commission was dead accurate in its lone gunman hypothesis (which, of course, has been almost universally discredited), an opinion which he clumsily evokes in his transparent attempt to smear anyone asking questions about the official story of 9/11.
I have generally had a deep respect for the work produced by the major American alternative publications like the Nation, the Progressive, Z Magazine, and In These Times, but on 9/11 (and some other economic issues we don’t have time for here) they seem to be doing us a disservice. Even Chomsky has thrown me for a loop on this one, reverting to emotional reactions instead of taking a serious look at the facts. It really is the damnedest thing, and only acts as a catalyst for more of those so-called “silly theories” from “crazy conspiracy nuts”. Even some mainstream media outlets have reported on truth-seekers with more objectivity.
I wait for the day Cockburn, or anyone else from the Big Alternative media, takes a serious look at the facts, and provides readers something other than a regurgitation of the bogus findings of Hearst’s Popular Mechanics magazine, or sadly hilarious (and somewhat alarming) claims like Cockburn’s that his brother had access to secret unreleased photos “clearly showing outline of entire plane including wing”. Until us second class citizens see all of these mysterious photos that, for some unexplained reason, can only be released to government-selected journalists, there will still be a hell-of-a-lot-a questions.
Thanks again for the suggestion, sorry I didn’t have anything nice to say about the piece. Please keep in touch and send any other articles you see fit in my direction.