US Media Fails Country In Boston Marathon Tragedy
Note: The amount of support, concern, care and compassion for the people of Boston at this time is overwhelming in the very best sense. The Update’s small offering of sympathy, in the midst of the rest, is offered humbly.
US media sources, including the New York Post, CBS News, NBC News and ABC News, all reported that a Saudi National was in custody of Boston Police within minutes of the explosions that rocked the Boston Marathon this afternoon. CBS reported that a civilian, whose identity appears not to have been released, identified an individual that he deemed to be acting suspiciously. No behavior was outlined, though CBS said he was first described, and condemned, as ‘Middle-Eastern looking.”
In these reports in numerous media outlets, no reporters voiced any concerns about the incident. That a civilian, stuck in a crowd of hundreds, just so happened to identify a Saudi National when these events occurred, is questionable. That law officers were willing to arrest him was concerning, unfair and deserves review.
That it didn’t happen, and that not one single person was actually brought into custody by Boston police, and that news outlets still have this false arrest posted as ‘updates’, is appalling. Driven by the need to make terrible events worse, ugly days more sinister, news outlets released these reports without consulting Boston police headquarters, who said the reports were, “Not true.”
NBC, Fox News and other outlets are still reporting that a suspect is being guarded in a Boston hospital, another story that has been denied and called untrue by both the FBI and Boston police. Boston Police commissioner Edward Davis declined to comment whether or not any person has been described as a person of interest, though flat out denied that any officers were assigned to a suspect in any hospital in Boston.
The Boston Marathon had over 23,000 runners, with tens of thousands more lining the route. More than 90 countries were represented in 2012, making it an more internationally-inclusive event that the UN, the UCI or most trade treaties. In any given stretch of the race, let alone the finishing area where the explosions took place, there were almost certainly dozens of people from Middle Eastern nations, just as there were dozens of European, Asian, South American, Australian and every other geographical division in attendance. That a Saudi was fingered, and that the US media seized this misinformation, is an insult to journalism and a cold reflection of the US mindset as we work to find out who actually did this.