Will the dishonest mainstream media on torture please stand up?

The reluctance of the American corporate media to call US torture “torture” has been exposed in a recent Harvard study. When “they” do it – Iraqis, Afghans, Colombians etc – it’s called torture. But when “we” do it, well, time to find another, less painful word.

Salon’s Glenn Greenwald will have none of it and rightly so:

In response to the Harvard study documenting how newspapers labeled waterboarding as “torture” for almost 100 years until the Bush administration told them not to, The… New York Times issued a statementAndrew Sullivan, Greg Sargent and Adam Serwer all pointed out that “taking a side” is precisely what the justifying this behavior on the ground that it did not want to take sides in the debate. NYT did:…  by dutifully complying with the Bush script and ceasing to use the term… (replacing it with cleansing euphemisms), it endorsed the demonstrably false proposition that waterboarding was something other than torture. … Yesterday, the NYT’s own Brian Stelter examined this controversy and included a justifying quote from the paper’s Executive Editor, Bill… Keller, that is one of the more demented and reprehensible statements I’ve seen from a high-level media executive in some time… (h/t Jay Rosen):

“Bill Keller, the executive editor of The Times, said the newspaper has written so much about the issue of water-boarding that “I think this Kennedy School study — by focusing on whether we have embraced the politically correct term of art in our news stories — is somewhat misleading and tendentious.””

More here and here.

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