Real journalist + fake journalist = no journalisming.

The difference between ‘peddling’ news and ‘piddling’ news

PJM in Hollywood (which is just another name for themanwhocreatedmoseswine) is scurrying about trying to create the appearance that Bananas In Pajamas Media is so a real journalistic enterprise with scoops and banner headlines and Marmaduke cartoons and guys wearing fedoras with a little Press card stuck in the band.

And while the MSM is preoccupied with so-called “facts” and “eyewitness reports” and other trivia, BIPM goes after the hard-hitting rumors that are wafting about in Michael Ledeens neo-cobwebby head.

A source close to Pajamas Media has learned that Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has apparently succumbed to the cancer that hospitalized him last month, as exclusively reported by Pajamas Media, at age 67. He has been Iran’s most powerful figure since replacing Ayatollah Khomeini in the role of Supreme Leader in 1989.

…or maybe not.

“It is a rumor circulating in Tehran,” Amir Taheri told Richard Miniter, PJM Washington editor. “There is no way to know if it is true.”

Taheri was responding to a Pajamas Media post yesterday of a report … as yet unconfirmed… that Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is dead.

Taheri is an Iranian-born journalist with a wide range of sources inside and outside of his former homeland. He was executive editor-in-chief of Kayhan, Iran’s most read newspaper, from 1972 to 1979. Later, he joined the staffs of Britain’s Sunday Times and Germany’s Die Welt. Today, he is columnist for the New York Post. Pajamas Media tracked him down in London.


On balance, Taheri was confident that Khamenei was suffering from cancer but skeptical that he had died.

Because if you really want to know about what’s happening in Iran, Taheri is your man. After all, he broke the sumptuary law story where the Iranian Jews were going to be forced to wear yellow stars. Only… not. And he does have quite the history of, what’s the word?…..oh yeah, making shit up.

It was in 1989 that Taheri was first exposed as a journalistic felon. The book he published the year before, Nest of Spies, examined the rule and fall of the Shah of Iran. Taheri received many respectful reviews, but in The New Republic Shaul Bakhash, a reigning doyen of Persian studies, checked Taheri’s footnotes. Suddenly a book review became an investigative exposé. Bakhash, a history professor at George Mason University and a former fellow at Princeton’s Institute for Advanced Study, detailed case after case in which Taheri cited nonexistent sources, concocted nonexistent substance in cases where the sources existed and distorted the substance beyond recognition when it was present. Taheri “repeatedly refers us to books where the information he cites simply does not exist,” Bakhash wrote. “Often the documents cannot be found in the volumes to which he attributes them…. [He] repeatedly reads things into the documents that are simply not there.” In one case, noted Bakhash, Taheri cited an earlier article of his own–but offered content he himself never wrote in that article. Bakhash concluded that Nest of Spies was “the sort of book that gives contemporary history a bad name.” In a response published two months later, Taheri failed to rebut Bakhash’s charges.

Yet, thanks to Benador and the outlets that publish its writers, Taheri survived to publish again. And again. The concoctions continued, with the full knowledge of his enablers. In a New York Post column last year, Taheri identified Iran’s UN ambassador, Javad Zarif, as one of the students involved in the illegal 1979 seizure of hostages at the US Embassy in Tehran. San Francisco State University professor Dwight Simpson wrote the Post politely to request a correction. “This allegation is false,” he explained. “On November 4, 1979 [the day of the seizure], Javad Zarif was in San Francisco. He was then a graduate student in the Department of International Relations of San Francisco State University. He was my student, and he served also as my teaching assistant.”

So I guess, for the moment, we’ll have to go with the fact that Khamenei is still alive because, if you can’t get Taheri to lie for you, you’re pretty much way out there in left right field….

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