- During the middle of March, 2003, tbrnews received an
email from a man who claimed to be a mid-level executive with a major American
television network. He stated in this, and subsequent, emails that he was
in possession of "thousands" of pages of in-house memos sent
from his corporate headquarters in New York City to the head of the network's
television news department. He went on to say that these memos set forth
directives about what material was, and was not, to be aired on the various
outlets of the network.
- This individual claimed he was developing serious doubts
about the strict control of media events and decided that he would pass
this material along to someone who might make use of it.
- There was the question of his job security. If someone
published his name, it would be certain he was not only fired but blackballed
throughout his profession.
- If tbrnews.org would agree to protect his identity, he
would send us these alleged thousands of pages of notes, going back to
- The proof of the pudding is in the eating so we accepted
his caveats and he then sent to us by disk the pages he spoke of. All are
on corporate stationary, signed or initialed by the senders and again,
signed or initialed by the recipients in the news division.
- It was always possible that this material consisted of
a very involved hoax or was something designed for the news site to use
and then have it revealed that it was not original. It would not be the
first time that spurious disinformation had been sent to us in the hopes
that it would be used.
- There were not "thousands of pages" of memos
but a total of 1,497 separate pages involved. Many of them consisted of
short memos while others ran to a larger format.
- Naturally, someone could easily have obtained correct
in-house network letterheads, made copies of them and prepared false memoranda
but the sheer size and depth of the collection was impressive.
- If these memos were true, they showed with a terrible
clarity that at least one part of the American mass media was strictly
controlled and that the news was so doctored and spun that it might as
well be official news releases from the White House and Pentagon.
- The best way in which to ascertain whether or not these
documents contained original information was to check the dates of issuance
and compare the information with subsequent news stories.
- This was a terrible, time-consuming chore but by selecting
random memos and looking through the archives of various national newspapers,
checking AP releases and so on, the results indicated that indeed, news
was being managed.
- However, it was also possible that someone else did this
and was preparing these after the fact and making the memos conform to
- That having been said, we insisted on absolutely current
memos so that we could then check these against future publications. If,
for example, a corporate fiat was to show certain pictures or spin a story
in a certain way, it would be relatively simple to simply read the press
or watch television news to see if these suggestions were implemented.
- It was both shocking and gratifying to note that this
proved to be the case in a preponderance of cases and so we began to put
these up, either in toto or, more often, in excerpt and watch as ordained
news was created before our eyes.
- When a corporate order states, for instance, that certain
pictures should be shown with accompanying commentary and the memo predates
a published story by a week or more, then it is more than likely that the
memos are not inspired guesswork but genuine.
- When tbrnews put up the first two pages, there were two
basic forms of public response. One was to thank us for exposing something
many people believed; that the American media was controlled and not free.
(That much can easily be ascertained by reading the websites of various
reputable foreign publications such as the Swiss NZZ, the British Guardian,
the Canadian Toronto Globe and Mail, Reuters News Service, AFP and the
Jerusalem Post. What any viewer can see on these sites is certainly not
reflected in the American media.)
- The second response consisted of irate, and literate,
statements to the effect that all of these items were just stupid hoaxes
and should not be believed. "I believe, one writer who claimed to
be a Professor of Journalism at an Ivy League college said, "these
are just disinformation designed to discredit American journalists whose
reputation for honesty and integrity is certainly beyond question. You
are performing a great disservice in repeating these politically-motivated
- This is certainly a true statement because if it became
generally accepted that the American media was only a mechanical parrot
for various political organizations, it would no longer be either believed
or watched. If viewers turned off their television sets, the networks would
lose huge amounts of advertising revenue, reporters would be laid off and
people would turn instead to the Internet for their news.
- The file, "Controlling the News" has proven
to be the most durable and viewed section of tbrnews. As the result of
our earlier postings, we have been receiving a significant amount of input
that extends far beyond the scope of our original informant. These sources
include, but are certainly not limited to; an employee of a major American
news magazine, a source inside the corporate offices of a major media conglomerate,
various military sources, foreign press and intelligence individuals and
persons connected with official agencies who are greatly disturbed by the
machinations of the current Administration.
- That these sources have requested anonymity is self-evident
- In the final analysis, it is always up to the reader
to make up their own mind as to the truth, or fiction, of what they read.
The media has an opposite view of this.
- It is fairly obvious that the average Americans get their
news either from TV, mostly, or, to a shrinking number, from the print
media. If someone in East Peoria, Illinois sees something on CNN, the Voice
of the White House, they have no reason to question it. And don't. The
establishment does not worry about a website that, as in our case, reaches
perhaps 100,000 people at a time when they have control over NBC, CBS,
ABC and CNN that can, and do, reach millions a day.
- What do they care about people who email messages back
and forth? Even if a Pentagon plan to nuke North Korea were up on the net,
all that would happen is that some would say, "See, I told you so!"
while others would say "Oh shame! You are questioning our Glorious
Leader (appointed to his high office by Almighty God Himself!) and putting
our Brave Troops in danger!"
- If the honesty of the American mass media is finally
brought into serious question, perhaps the ruling Establishment cannot
jam their lies down the public's throat with such ease.
- Walter Storch Controlling the News