A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Nothing to See Here, Folks: "He Could Not Explain the Afghan's Motives or Explain Why He Was On Fire."

Great moments in press spin: Elizabeth Bumiller in The New York Times on the incident that took place when Leon Panetta's plane was landing at a British air base near Kandahar:
[Pentagon Press Secretary] Mr. [George] Little said the stolen vehicle never exploded, counter to some earlier reports, and that Mr. Panetta was never in danger. But he could not explain the Afghan’s motive or explain why he was on fire. “For reasons that are totally unknown to us at this time, our personnel discovered that he was ablaze,” Mr. Little said. “He ran, he jumped on to a truck, base personnel put the fire out, and he was immediately treated for burn injuries.”
"He could not explain ... why he was on fire."

Unauthorized  (and stolen) truck driven by unauthorized Afghan on runway as US Secretary of Defense is landing, Driver emerges from truck and bursts into flames. No, nothing suspicious here. Keep moving.

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