Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Sanger - Judy Miller In Drag

By Cernig

For those who are serious about watching Iran's progress in its nuclear program, rather than just cheerleading for the latest bit of MSM stenography in support of the Bush administration's narrative, I heartily recommend Dr. Jeffrey Lewis, the Arms Control Wonk. Dr. Lewis examines the latest report from administration insider David Sanger at the NY Times and finds it severely wanting in terms of journalistic scepticism...or even integrity.

Sometimes, I think the New York Times David Sanger is just Judy Miller without the creepy love notes from Scooter Libby. Then I think, I’ve never read David Sanger’s mail.
Among other misgivings, Dr. Lewis finds that Sanger took a quote by IAEA head Mohammed El Baradei out of context to make it seem as if he was commenting on the NYT story - but in fact it is from remarks that ElBaradei released to the press in advance of the regular report the NYT story was based upon.

He also pours technical detail and scepticism upon Sanger's implicit claims that the Iranians can even manufacture 3,000 or more centrifuges or that they have enough feedstock gas to make enough enriched uranium for even one bomb in the first place.

He concludes that:
the Sanger story seems to claim that by June 1, Iran will have enough centrifuges to reach a bomb within a year and, at some unspecified time in the near future, enough LEU that “If Iran stores the uranium and later runs it through centrifuges for four or five more months, it can raise the enrichment to 90 percent, the level needed for a nuclear weapon.”

That seems very unlikely to me.

Worse, it distracts from the technical information that would allow for a sensible compromise.
And distracting from a compromise is exactly what the originators of Sanger's exercise in stenography and shilling intend his story to do.

Update Unsurprisingly, Sanger has awoken the drums in the deep.