Edit: This, attributed to the same author, is even clearer:
"For in the last few days, there has emerged disturbing evidence that in its final report on the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime in the city of Douma last year, the OPCW deliberately concealed from both the public and the press the existence of a dissenting 15-page assessment of two cylinders which had supposedly contained molecular chlorine – perhaps the most damning evidence against the Assad regime in the entire report.
The OPCW officially maintains that these canisters were probably dropped by an aircraft – probably a helicopter, presumably Syrian – over Douma on 7 April 2018. But the dissenting assessment, which the OPCW made no reference to in its published conclusions, finds there is a “higher probability that both cylinders were manually placed at those two locations rather than being delivered from aircraft”."
The Douma gas attack has been investigated not only by the OPCW, but by organisations such as the UN, the Red Cross and pretty much all serious journalism from the BBC, NYTimes to The Times and Wall Street Journal. They all agree that the Syrian Governmant gassed its own people i Douma.
The consensus is overwhelming, the wiki page on the incident lists 119 sources. I obviously haven't checked all of them but most look credible to me.
“Expert Panel Finds Gaping Plot Holes In OPCW Report On Alleged Syrian Chemical Attack” by Caitlin Johnstone https://link.medium.com/7qYYVU2Z40
Back in 2012, when ISIS beheading videos where showing up on my Facebook newsfeed every week, I recall it was Syrian rebels who were brandishing chemical weapons - but the MSM never mentions it: https://youtu.be/TpIRRRuCEyg
I understand that journalism can't be all about debunking conspiracy theories, but Fisk does seem to have some clout.
Are people numb to this? Do we just not want to discuss it because we don't think we can be civil any more?
Is it interesting that some news org is passing stock footage? Is that in any way new? Maybe if they were using "deepfakes" to generate fake news videos it would be interesting, but it's not like the Turkish attack is in any way disputed.
Is reddit a good "detective"? Well,: https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/we-did-it-reddit
How is that relevant to this discussion? That reddit is correct in this particular instance isn't in question. Unless you're entertaining the notion of devious redditors hacking youtube to fabricate the original video.. Responding to this circumstance by calling into question the reputation of reddit seems like textbook FUD. There is no legitimate defensible uncertainty or doubt here, no matter reddit's reputation.
That said, then why not err on the side of leaving this up? I like HN because there are usually insightful, level-headed discussions about a wide variety of topics. This is definitely one I'd love to read a larger take on from the HN crowd on. This isn't a status quo I'd like to see more people accept.
The easiest way to do this is usually listen to the other side.
I'll skeptically take self-admitted bias over subversive "neutral" any day.
The danger is limiting yourself only to sources of similar bias.
The trick is to read about the same event from all sides.
Self-admitted bias will gladly skip, ignore, distort, and excuse elements of stories they think reflect poorly on their side. With out other perspectives you'll never know and end up with a warped sense of reality.
Turns out it was a video of an ARMA2 mod.
(When the stakes are higher and spy agencies are involved... who knows.)
I am horrified that the author felt the need to clarify this, as if it was in dispute.
Edit: I'm genuinely curious why this getting down-voted?
If the video was produced anywhere inside ABC's organization, it would be dishonesty rather than incompetence. Anyone who downloaded a video from YouTube and edited out the people with phones at the bottom would have known that the video was not footage of a battle.
In the 90s, Germany's largest public TV station accidentally ran the previous year's New Year's Address by the Chancellor. These speeches have a tendency to be extremely bland, and according to lore nobody noticed the error until the very end when they mentioned the (wrong) year.
Like if the film editor (or librarian or intern) that filed the original footage thought it would be funny to label a bunch of gun-loving Kentuckians as terrorists. Video gets tagged "Terrorists waging jihad on Americans. Automatic gunfire and explosions at night"
A few days/hours later someone searches the library for recent footage of Syria, and the keywords fit.
One unexplored possibility is that the footage was provided by some Kurdish group.
Kurdish militias are capable of spreading propaganda based on false media. They are clearly doing it today. Look at the comments here: https://twitter.com/PYD_Rojava/status/1182939359999332355?s=...
I am not a combat veteran so the following is speculative, but I suspect the footage may look suspect to combat veterans as well. Big orange fireballs like that are from milk jugs of gasoline, not high explosives. That sort of thing is done for visual effect, not lethal effect. Certainly vehicle fuel will catch fire on battlefields, but I can't help but suspect the video would look "off" to a combat veteran.
They might sometimes take youtube footage, foreign broadcasts, or material provided to them by parties to the conflict. But those tend to carry prominent labels and aren't paid for.
One possibility is that it was Kurdish sources who supplied the video to ABC, falsely claiming that it was a fight against them in Syria. If that turned out to be the case, then would the media fess up to being duped by them? It would force ABC to change their narrative on Syria - something that I believe they're unwilling to do, no matter what.
Of course we need journalists, but it's just as good that we have some independent fact checkers that also have a platform to stand on.
And it's not like the network journalists have done anything to earn our trust recently.
And one answer to your second question could be: money. Professionals need to generate (exactly) 60 minutes of news every night (minus time for commercials), and have it be entertaining enough to get people to watch (so they can sell more commercials). Amateurs providing random facts on the internet are not dependent on other corporations to generate income, or daily TV/newspaper deadlines.
Thought experiment: if we didn't have a profession called "journalism" today, and free worldwide publishing already existed (i.e., the internet), would we wish that they existed? Would people be saying "For the sake of our democracy, we need to pay these random Reddit fact checkers a good salary"?