The Mudville Gazette, an internet site, immediately jumped on Army Ranger Jesse MacBeth’s story after his video accusing the U.S. military of killing innocents in Iraq was pulled quickly off the internet by Pepperspray Productions.
In the 21 minute video, Macbeth talked about how soldiers were coerced under orders, leading to the indiscriminant killing of women, children and prayer worshippers in mosques.
The video remained in circulation for a short time, before the site at www.peacefilms.org was replaced with a huge blue globe of the earth, some observers saying the globe was symbolic of the New World Order.
The internet Gazette picked up the story first tracking down an Army source who released a statement, saying Macbeth never served in the military. The story quoted Army spokesman John Boyce, who said:
“Initial research by the U.S. Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg shows no Soldier with the name of Jesse Macbeth having ever been assigned to the Special Forces or the Army Rangers — which are, in fact, two separate disciplines.
“This appears to be some sort of hoax. No Soldier by that name at Fort Lewis to our knowledge, in the past, either. Of course, the line about “go into the Army or go to jail” is vintage TV script not heard since the 1960s. There are also numerous wear and appearance issues with the Soldier’s uniform — a mix of foreign uniforms with the sleeves rolled up like a Marine and a badly floppy tan beret worn like a pastry chef. Of course, the allegations of war crimes are vague, as are the awards the Soldier allegedly received.”
However, a conflicting report appeared in the Eastern Arizona Courier, a mainstream paper near Macbeth’s home of Pima, Arizona, written by staff reporter Pam Crandall in November 2003, two-and-a-half months after she claimed Macbeth returned from Iraq as a member of the Army Rangers.
The complete story can be found at http://www.eacourier.com/articles/2003/11/03/news/news02.txt but the following is a copy of the story reprinted by the Gazette:
The war in Iraq was officially called to an end a few months ago, but according to Private First Class Jesse MacBeth, 19, of Pima, the turmoil has just begun.
MacBeth, a ranger in the U.S. Army, returned to the states two-and-a-half months ago after sustaining an injury in his back. He spent 14 months serving in the Middle East — first in Afghanistan and then in Baghdad. Formerly from Tucson, MacBeth now resides in Pima, where he has family, friends and a fiancé¼He said that small-town life is the perfect remedy for the various traumas that he suffered during his service in the Middle East.
“Loud noises startle me,” he said. “Its nice and quiet here. I live in a trailer out in the middle of nowhere.” According to MacBeth, his reaction to loud noise stems from the horrible experiences that he had while in Iraq. After returning to Ft. Benning in Georgia, he was officially diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and received both medication and counseling to help him adjust to a non-combative environment.
“The Iraqis would stand in a crowd and shoot at us. We had to kill civilians to get to them because we were ordered to shoot anything that came at us,” he said. “I keep having nightmares about it.”
MacBeth and others in the 10-man unit in which he served were some of the first soldiers in Baghdad. He said his unit had a special duty to perform. “We had to clear the loyalists from the tunnels under the city. Some were from the Republican Guard.”
MacBeth was shot in the back by an M-16 rifle while in a tunnel. He remembers that he had to continue fighting after a Canadian nurse quickly stitched up his wounds. “They would sew you up and you’d have to just keep on going,” he said. MacBeth is haunted daily by the memories of his service in Iraq. “We didn’t think about what was going on while we were there,” he said, “but it’s coming back in dreams. I don’t like to remember it.” He recalls watching his buddies die, which he said is nearly unbearable for him to think about at times. “I lost good friends that I trained with,” he said. “I gave some dog tags to family members personally.”
Further, the compilation of information gathered by the Gazette found several photos of Macbeth appearing at anti-war rallies.
As more information comes forward, questions linger as to the veracity of Macbeth’s story, whether the producers bowed to military pressure and quickly removed the video or whether it was black ops campaign to spread disinformation, a dirty campaign geared at catching journalists and readers in a web of deceit knowing no bounds or decency in modern day fascist America.
Although the controversy created by the Macbeth video is far from over, it is just another example of how a search for the truth requires vigilant daily reporting. By unfolding “every once” of a story on a daily basis, the truth of course eventually surfaces and the people are apprised exactly how it occurs, sometimes by a very twisted and illogical turn of events like appear to be unfolding in the Macbeth story.
Further, it is wise not to cast judgments but to follow the story trail wherever it leads. Also, family members, friends and acquaintances of Macbeth are encouraged to come forward, as one other way at finding out the truth.
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Also see: Jesse Macbeth is a Fraud