Whoops: Top GOP spin doctor says Iraq is a 'failure'... in Arabic

It's a small world after all. According to the Guardian UK:


Speaking in Arabic on al-Jazeera television Alberto Fernandez, director of public diplomacy at the state department's bureau of near eastern affairs, gave viewers an unusually sharp assessment of the administration's efforts in Iraq. He spoke in the past tense, as though it was all over.
"We tried to do our best [in Iraq], but I think there is much room for criticism because, undoubtedly, there was arrogance and there was stupidity from the United States in Iraq," he said.
Jonathan Steele's article is unusually sharp, even for the UK's liberal paper. After noting (without qualification and therefore implicitly accusing Bush of violating the Geneva Conventions) that Bush had twice bombed Al Jazeera, he writes that: "recently it has adjusted policy and started using its few Arabic-speakers to appear on discussions and debates. It thought it had found a good way to get its line across. But Mr Fernandez was franker than his paymasters expected."

And then, in a blatant violation of American journalistic standards, the article goes on to actually check on a statement it received from a spokesperson.

Upon learning of Fernandez's remarks, State Dept spokesman Sean McCormack -- an Arabic scholar, no doubt -- claimed that the remarks had been mistranslated. But:
... a transcript by the Associated Press confirmed the accuracy of Mr Fernandez's reported quotes.
Humpty Dumpty is about 2 inches from the ground. (GuardianUK)

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