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Wiklieaks: Michael Moore And The Guardian’s Failure To Investigate A Bad Leak In Cuba

by | 18th, December 2010

MICHAEL Moore supports Julian Assange, grandstanding on the Wikileaks founder’s arrests and bail furore. He hands over $20,000 as part of the $240,000 surety that Assange will not abscond from Vaughan Smith’s custody. And a short time on Moore is the subject of a leaked cable. What are the odds on a new keyword hitting the Guardian’s news agenda? Only, the cable is wrong. You see , those leaks are not all right. They might contain lies, wrongs, mistakes and all manner of nonsense.

Julian Assange says he is a journalist. Others say he is is a technical expert. The Guardian hacks says they are most definitely journalists making sense of a welter of data. But they failed.

The leaked cable is about Moore’s film Sicko. Doug Ross (via Ed Driscoll) explains:

In 2007 director Michael Moore releasedSicko, a film that ostensibly compared the free market health care system of the United States with the universal approaches employed by countries such as the United Kingdom and Cuba. It depicted those countries with government-run systems as superior in many respects when contrasted with the U.S. approach.

You might think Cuba would love the message. But the Guardian has seen the leaks and its Amelia Hill writes:

But the memo reveals that when the film was shown to a group of Cuban doctors, some became so “disturbed at the blatant misrepresentation of healthcare in Cuba that they left the room”.

The story is entitled:

WikiLeaks: Cuba banned Sicko for depicting ‘mythical’ healthcare system

But Moore says it’s untrue. He says the leaked private email presented by the Guardian as fact is wrong.  He says the cable dated  January 31, 2008, was sent four months before his film was shown on Cuaban TV.

Sounds convincing, eh?! There’s only one problem — the entire nation of Cuba was shown the film on national television on April 25, 2008! The Cubans embraced the film so much so it became one of those rare American movies that received a theatrical distribution in Cuba. I personally ensured that a 35mm print got to the Film Institute in Havana. Screenings of ‘Sicko’ were set up in towns all across the country. …

So what do you do with about a false “secret” cable, especially one that involves you and your movie? Well, you wait for a responsible newspaper to investigate and shout what it discovers from the rooftops.

The Guardian’s hack in the know says:

Authorities feared footage of gleaming hospital in Michael Moore’s Oscar-nominated film would provoke a popular backlash

Says Moore:

And not one scintilla of digging to see if Cuba had actually banned the movie!

The Guardian’s scoop was repeated in good faith by Reason MagazineHot Air,  BoingBoing. ONTD and the Nation. Moore still supports Wikileaks. But what is it he is supporting? Does he just like it because the cables it’s released bash the US?

As we’ve said before: Wikileaks is a hit with media because it a boon to lazy journalists. No longer do you need sources and insiders you can trust – you can just read leaked memos and take them at face value.

Unless… Unless it is the famous M&M of a leak. Is it a cable deliberately placed  by Assange to endure the Guardian jotters check their facts?



Posted: 18th, December 2010 | In: Reviews Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink