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2011-06-24

Leaked WikiLeaks Cable: 2005 Democracy Now! Report on Haiti Killings Irked U.S. Embassy

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Democracy Now! is mentioned in a U.S. diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks that cites our 2005 report on a deadly raid in the poor neighborhood of Cité Soleil by United Nations forces. “You accurately reported on what was going on and the embassy was alarmed by it,” says our guest, longtime Haiti correspondent Dan Coughlin. “What they were upset about is there wasn’t PR push back on Democracy Now! by the U.N.” Another cable shows U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called embassies around the world to tell them to “get the narrative right” with editors and fight negative portrayals of U.S. deployment in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake. [includes rush transcript]

Transcript

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: Democracy Now! was mentioned in the cables, Dan Coughlin?

DAN COUGHLIN: One cable, actually released previously through a FOIA request, a Freedom of Information Act request, by Professor [Keith] Yearman at the College of DuPage in Illinois, where I think, Amy, you did a piece, again, back in July of 2005, exactly about Cité Soleil and what the—and a U.N. massacre there, that we’re talking about.

KIM IVES: With Seth Donnelly.

DAN COUGHLIN: With a person from a labor delegation out of San Francisco, Seth Donnelly. And so, you actually accurately reported what was going on, and the embassy was alarmed by it and reported on Democracy Now! and other groups, saying, "Hey"—what they were upset about was that there wasn’t push back, PR push back, on Democracy Now! by the U.N.

KIM IVES: And that’s what—and that’s what Hillary Clinton was coming with when she was saying, "We have to get the narrative right." And they were calling—and we see that in one of the cables after the militarization, calling around to embassies around the world to tell them to go after the editors, go after—if there’s anything, if it’s in Ecuador or if it’s in Doha or if it’s in Thailand, go and fight back against any negative portrayal of the U.S. deployment after the quake. So they want to make sure that they get the narrative right. And you got it wrong, Amy.

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