Ex-CIA Official Has to Explain to CBS Why We Don’t Believe Iranian Propaganda

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A former top CIA official had to explain to CBS just why it’s unwise to believe Iranian propaganda claiming that 80 members of the U.S. military were killed during the country's air strike. This Morning co-host Gayle King on Wednesday seemed to equate equally the Iranian propaganda outfit and western reporting, citing “conflicting information.” 

First, reporter Elizabeth Palmer parroted, “A news agency, Fars News, close to the Revolutionary Guard is claiming that 80 U.S. personnel were killed and 200 wounded, although they provide no evidence.” This is the same news organization, it should be pointed out, that once claimed Iranian scientists had invented a time machine. 

Talking to Former Deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency Michael Morell, King appeared perplexed: “Michael conflicting information too about the casualties. U.S. officials say no casualties. Elizabeth just reported in Iran, they’re saying 80 were killed. 200 injured. Who do we believe?” 

 

 

Morell attempted to explain the reasons why we might know if 80 members of the military were dead and another 200 wounded:  “So, I’m sure there were no casualties.” King broke in and demanded: “Why are you so sure? Why are you so sure?” 

Morell reiterated: 

Because we would be hearing from the U.S. military if there were casualties. No doubt about it. And I would believe what they are telling us I think what we see in Iran is them saying, “We hit back and we had hit hard and there were casualties” and that allows them to de-escalate. So, I think they are sending us a message here that in terms of direct attacks, this is done for now. 

A partial transcript is below.

CBS This Morning
1/8/2020
8:10

ELIZABETH PALMER: The clear message coming from the leadership is that they are done, at least for now. And that the missile strikes were a specific retaliation  for Qasem Soleimani’s death. A news agency, Fars News, close to the Revolutionary Guard is claiming that 80 U.S. personnel were killed and 200 wounded, although they provide no evidence.

8:12

GAYLE KING:  Michael conflicting information too about the casualties. U.S. officials say no casualties. Elizabeth just reported in Iran, they’re saying 80 were killed. 200 injured. Who do we believe? 

MICHAEL MORELL (Former Deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency): So, I’m sure there were no casualties. 

KING: Why are you so sure? Why are you so sure? 

MORELL: Because we would be hearing from the U.S. military if there were casualties. No doubt about it. And I would believe what they are telling us I think what we see in Iran is them saying, “We hit back and we had hit hard and there were casualties” and that allows them to de-escalate. So, I think they are sending us a message here that in terms of direct attacks, this is done for now. 

NB Daily Iran CBS This Morning Video Elizabeth Palmer
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