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Where’s Aleppo -or- We’re all morons

September 8, 2016

Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson was asked about Aleppo, the besieged city in Syria where the Syrian government (regime, if you prefer) and its allied forces have encircled various anti-Assad rebels, the “good” kind (though many parts of their crew were formerly known to us as extremists). A large city, civilians are also trapped amidst the fighting.

This fighting at Aleppo has been going on for more than a month now, and has been a major talking point in the presentation of the Syria conflict – If you look at foreign policy news even once a week you’ve heard the name. Not Johnson apparently. Really disturbing.

But it gets worse. The New York Times decides to report on this, but the writers and editors couldn’t be bothered to type the name of the place into google (or glance at the maps in their own paper).

  • The initial version of the story, NYT describes Aleppo as the capital of ISIS. (not even close).
  • Second version: “a stronghold in IS”. Still wrong – Aleppo is, or was, “good-rebel” territory, which could be seen on countless maps in the NYT itself.
  • Third version “war-torn syrian city”. Finally.
  • First “correction” note added to article: has Aleppo as the “capital of Syria”. (wrong).
  • Second correction note clarifies that the capital of Syria is Damascus.

Damn. We are so screwed.

Joining in on the fun was Christopher Hill, a former US Ambassador to Iraq etc, and currently a frequent foreign policy commentator — he also called it the capital of IS.

Source: Story from Salon

Map from ISW – note, Aleppo lies between “regime” and “opposition” forces.

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