The government and Pentagon has also coerced most broadcasters to pull coverage of captured US soldiers. An independent website was also taken down for mirroring pictures of the prisoners. Fortunately, it is now back up again on another host.
Meanwhile, al Jazeera, which just released an english version of its website, has been effectively knocked off the web by extremely organized and widespread DDOS attacks, it appears.
This is unfortunate, because if there is any organization that can determine for us whether there really is an uprising in Basra, it is al Jazeera, who have a camera crew there. However, there has yet to be any independent confirmation of a revolt. If there *is* a revolt, what is taking so long to get pictures of it released? Is al Jazeera dependent on the Iraqis for uplinks that just aren't there anymore?!
**Note: Al-Jazeera reporters in Basra report that there are no signs of unrest. Unless independent confirmation is available from a neutral party, it is quite possible that this is an attempt at disinformation aimed at making the citizens of Basra think a revolt is under way. **
Meanwhile, in Baghdad, little-known Abu Dhabi TV is making quite a name for itself, providing much of the coverage from inside Baghdad. Will they remain on the air, possibly also airing tapes provided by the Iraqi government, or will they become a target too, like al Jazeera was in Afghanistan?
The obvious reason for destroying Iraqi television (and presumably the people who run it) is to prevent Iraq from telling their side of the argument on the war... however, on March 19th, Reporters Sans Frontieres called on US authorities to "avoid targeting transmitters of Iraqi radio stations and Iraqi media offices .... Media property and equipment are civil property protected under international humanitarian law."
Until we know where the truth really lies, I am very much concerned that we will not have the information necessary to decide what the truth in Iraq really is -- and unfortunately, that appears to be the intent.