Prosecute the torture.

October 13, 2011

Can't Let This One Pass...

From Thursday's Tribune-Review:
Which brings us to the troubling reports out of Japan that Mr. Obama sought to (but Japan rejected the idea) apologize for dropping the atomic bombs in 1945. Apologize for a war-ending act that likely saved the lives of tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of American troops? Have you no decency, Mr. President?
Guess what?

It ain't true!

What are these "reports" that Scaife's braintrust mentions?  It can't be from ABC.  Wanna know why?  Take a look:
In September 2009, US Ambassador to Japan John Roos reported to the Obama administration that the Japanese government did not think it was a good idea for President Obama to visit Hiroshima to apologize for the US having dropped an atomic bomb on that city, a secret cable published by Wikileaks revealed.

Roos wrote the cable after his August meeting with Vice Foreign Minister Mitoji Yabunaka, reporting to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that the Japanese government felt “the idea of President Obama visiting Hiroshima to apologize for the atomic bombing during World War II is a ‘non-starter.’ While a simple visit to Hiroshima without fanfare is sufficiently symbolic to convey the right message, it is premature to include such program in the November visit.”

A senior White House official asserts to ABC News that there was never any plan for the president to apologize for Hiroshima. The cable does not state that the idea was from the U.S. Rather, Roos writes that Yabunaka thought that following President Obama’s call earlier that year for a world free of nuclear weapons, anti-nuclear groups would speculate as to whether he would visit Hiroshima. [emphasis added.]
Wikileaks, huh?  Wonder what the cable actually says?  Me too.  Here it is:
VFM Yabunaka pointed out that the Japanese public will have high expectations toward President Obama's visit to Japan in November, as the President enjoys an historic level of popularity among the Japanese people. Anti-nuclear groups, in particular, will speculate whether the President would visit Hiroshima in light of his April 5 Prague speech on non-proliferation. He underscored, however, that both governments must temper the public's expectations on such issues, as the idea of President Obama visiting Hiroshima to apologize for the atomic bombing during World War II is a "non-starter." While a simple visit to Hiroshima without fanfare is sufficiently symbolic to convey the right message, it is premature to include such program in the November visit. Yabunaka recommended that the visit in November center mostly in Tokyo, with calls on the Emperor and Prime Minister, as well as some form of public program, such as speeches, an engagement at a university, or a town hall-like meeting with local residents. Highlighting the busy political calendar in the coming weeks, including the election of the new Prime Minister, launching of the new Cabinet, and the Prime Minister's participation in the UN General Assembly and the Pittsburgh G-20 Summit, Yabunaka noted that both sides should begin working quickly on the President's November visit. The Ambassador conveyed an informal invitation for the new Prime Minister to attend the Pittsburgh Summit, adding that an official invitation will follow once the Prime Minister is elected. [emphasis added.]
See that?  The VPM was talking about the "high expectations" of the Japanese public and how Japanese anti-nuclear groups might speculate about an Obama visit to Hiroshima.

Can someone tell me where it says that the President "sought to apologize" for Hiroshima?

It's not there.

Like the $16 muffins, this story just isn't true.

As the braintrust has yet to correct itself for the muffin gaffe I don't expect them to correct themselves here, either.

UPDATE: Fox News (FOX NEWS!) apologizes for spreading this lie.  Here's what Steve Doocey (STEVE DOOCEY!) said (via mediamatters):
We'd like to clarify a story we told you about yesterday during our program. The story was about a possible apology from President Obama to Japan for the U.S. dropping atomic bombs on that country during World War II. We want to be very clear. There was never a plan for President Obama to apologize to Japan. We should have been clear about that, and we're sorry for the confusion. [emphasis added.]
Fox News apologizes for getting it wrong. Will Scaife's braintrust apologize, too?

We're waiting.

3 comments:

Heir to the Throne said...

So if a senior White House official asserts something it must be true.
... Unless a Republican is President,

White House Denies It Planned to Apologize for Hiroshima

EdHeath said...

Like David said, the Wikileaks copy of the cable doesn't really establish anything. The US ambassador is reporting on what hte Japanese Vice Foreign Minister said. It is the Japanese VFM who mentions Hiroshima, We don't know if this is the first time Hiroshima has been mentioned in discussions about the President's visit, or who brought it if it was brought up before, or in what context it was brought up.

Just because a conservative website puts a certain spin on something, that doesn't make it true either.

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