Sunday, May 27, 2007

Oh good. Nutbag Annie Jacobson's Flight 327 is back, and the wingnuts are wetting themselves over the non-story.

Comedy will follow.

Added: Okay, let me elaborate. Here's how the Moonie Times bamboozles the rubes, like those Powerline Clowns. The Times writes:

More details on Flight 327 released

The inspector general for Homeland Security late Friday released new details of what federal air marshals say was a terrorist dry run aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 327 from Detroit to Los Angeles on June 29, 2004.

Two paragraphs later, the article purports to set forth "Excerpts fom [sic] 51-page inspector general report."

Here's the bait-and-switch. The article's headline and first paragraph insinuate that the OIG report includes a finding that there was a terrorist dry run on Flight 327 or, at a minimum, that air marshals on the flight or involved in the investigation asserted that there was a dry run on Flight 327. But the article never says that. The Moonie rag says that the OIG report includes "new details," not that the report states there was a terrorist dry run on Flight 327.

In the later paragraphs purporting to summarize the article, there is no suggestion that the report concluded there was a terrorist dry run or that anyone involved in the investigation came to that conclusion.

I strongly suspect that the air marshals cited in paragraph one are wingnut kibbitzers who have reached their conclusion based on the reports of others (such as Jacobson), and not the investigating authorities actually involved in the case. If the inspector general or marshals actually involved in the investigation came to the conclusion that Flight 327 was a terrorist dry run, the Moonie Times would trumpet that claim in the clearest possible terms. And the air marshals on the flight are already on record debunking the delusions of Jacobson. (More here.)

Perhaps the DHS caved to wingnut pressures and issued a report quoting the conclusions of right-wing know-nothings. There's no reason to believe that all the insane true believers ended up in the Department of Justice. But it seems obvious that if the OIG's report concluded there were terrorist plotters plotting aboard Flight 327, the Moonie rag wouldn't be pussyfooting around with evasive and misleading language.

This isn't a new trick for the Moonie Times, either. Back in 2005, the same reporter was asserting that Flight 327 was "described by many federal air marshals and passengers as a dry run for a terrorist attack" without any corroboration that any air marshal held that view.

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