Tuesday, May 24, 2005

US sends spies into Iraq posing as reporters?

A reporter from Pacifica Radio named Aaron Glantz, recent author of How America Lost Iraq, claimed yesterday that the US was sending spy-journalists into Iraq. It's the first time I'd heard something like that, and if it's true, I wouldn't say I was surprised. Here's the relevant quote: [28:00 timestamp]
The U.S. military sometimes sends in people claiming to be journalists who are actually spies. I tried to get myself into northern Iraq by getting across the border, illegally, before the war. Turkey and Iraq had their border closed and I was going to smuggle myself through. And I didn’t because I ended up meeting this kind of sleazy guy who claimed to be from a magazine in Southern California, named Rex Wempen. Little do I know, like, three months later I see him quoted in a story in some magazine as a trainer with Vinnell Group, which is training the new Iraqi army for the US military. So in this atmosphere… the Americans have people posing as journalists who are not…

That's a hell of a charge, and it's not clear what happened in this situation. Is it just one incident? Was this guy only misrepresenting himself to Glantz? I don't know. If true, it's pretty terrible.

SOURCE: WNYC's Leonard Lopate show.

Permalink posted by Jonathan : 2:53 PM

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