Inner City Press

Inner City Press -- Investigative Reporting From the United Nations to Wall Street to the Inner City

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

  Search Search WWW (censored?)

In Other Media-eg AJE, FP, Georgia, NYT Azerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us     .


Follow us on TWITTER

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


(FP Twitterati 100, 2013)

ICP on YouTube

UN: Sri Lanka


FOIA Finds  

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

On Syria, Ban's Report Spoon-Fed 5 Days in Advance Shows He's a Minor Card

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, September 11 -- On Syria the contrived leak, five days in advance, that UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will dutifully "finger" Bashar al Assad in a report to the Security Council on September 16 proves at least one thing.

  Ban is not the West's ace in the hole on Syria, but merely a minor card to be played as part of a larger strategy.

  Consider the timing, not explored in the leaks. If the unnamed Western diplomats already know what's in Ban's report, why is Ban withholding it another five days?

  Well, US Secretary of State John Kerry is meeting his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov tomorrow. Although Ban committed to speed up the investigation and report as soon as possible, to truly release the results now would get lost, in terms of leverage for the West.

  And so it's better to leak it, through a well worn pass through -- the same one used to deny the Inner City Press demonstrated cover up of the murder of UN Security officer Louis Maxwell, and to praise the mad cowboy of Mogadishu David Bax.

  Already it's had some effect. On Fox News on Wednesday night, Senator Kelly Ayotte said she's seen a report that the UN finds Assad guilty. Who cares if that's not even what the contrived leak is saying? It's the impact that's important, not the words. Or the truth.

Cynics among those UN reporters who actually ran up through the heat along with Inner City Press to the Russian Mission, where US Ambassador Samantha Power and her French and UK counterparts Gerard Araud and Mark Lyall Grant spent half an hour Wednesday afternoon wondered why this pass-through and his Mean Girl friend weren't there.

  Now it's known: there was real pass-through work to be done, blind quotes to be typed up. But where are the questions? Not only about the timing, but more fundamentally about how these leaks are consistent with Ban's mandate: to say IF chemical weapons were used, not who used them?

  But Ban has been in the bag throughout. He allowed the US to say that Syria blocked the Ake Sellstrom team for four or even five days, when his envoy Angela Kane didn't even made the request to visit Ghouta until August 24.

  Then his spokespeople in New York began to use a new phrase: the "evidence based narrative." They would not say who used chemical weapons -- but their "evidence based narrative" would allow that.

  What did the phrase mean? Inner City Press asked. It was never explained. And now we see: the narrative begins even before the report is released, on delay, as a small card in a large deck. To what end? Watch this site.


Share |

* * *

These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

Click for re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption

Feedback: Editorial [at]

UN Office: S-303, UN, NY 10017 USA

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

  Search  Search WWW (censored?)

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

            Copyright 2006-2013 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]