Talk for Article "Fact check: has China detained a million Uighurs?"

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  1. I spoke to a NYT journalist on this, Andrew Jacobs. His reply, I quote:

    “the sourcing of the one million people interned is questionable”

    Here’s another point for comparison. Just days ago BBC quoted the same DC-based OCHRD that is on US government’s payroll via NED grants, much smaller numbers:

    Edited: 2018-09-14 00:38:12 By

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  2. : I am not sure Norton and his co author are right in this interpretation. They don’t quote the spokesperson from the OHCHR, and when they summarise what was said they just say that the UN itself is not making that claim. But only the Intercept article actually attributed assertion to the UN directly. The other outlets they name on TGZ are not making the claim the UN said this, they are making the claim the UN was told this, by a “credible” source. So pointing out that they are one of the ‘”independent”‘ experts, who were commissioned, it seems, by the OHCHR:

    My first guess at what has happened has been the OHCHR has had this report on China, written, as is normal, by outside experts, one of whom produced the 1 million number. The claim the UN has the report is unarguably true, if that’s the case. The other wording used by rueters is UN panel. I think its fair if perhaps not fully precice to call a panel of experts commissioned by the UN a UN panel, that this isn’t The UN as a whole stating this is not a contradiction of the original story (though the Intercept seem to have missed the nuance). I would also add that the Greyzone is a highly politically slanted outlet, with a fiercely “anti establishment” agenda, including painting Reuters and other more professionalised and long standing outlets as mere propagandists for the “deep state”, which I like to say is basically the gluten of politics.

    Norton is famous for being an apologist for the Assad regime, desperately picking apart minor errors in “mainstream” reporting to blunt the effect of essentially accurate reports that for example, dozens of children have just been gassed.

    1. “They don’t quote the spokesperson from the OHCHR…”

      This is false. They quoted her.

      “You are correct that the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is an independent body,” Gronnevet wrote. “Quoted comments were made during public sessions of the Committee when members were reviewing State parties.”

      ”But only the Intercept article actually attributed assertion to the UN directly.”

      This is also incorrect. The Reuters and The Atlantic articles (which I included in the fact check) also directly attributed the claim to the UN. There are many other articles available on the internet that also attribute it to the UN.

      “The claim the UN has the report is unarguably true…”

      If you have it then please cite it so we can include it in the fact check. I don’t know what “inarguably true” even means. Are you suggesting we should believe they have it without actually seeing it for ourselves?

      “Norton is famous for being an apologist for the Assad regime…”

      I have been following Norton for a while. I have never seen evidence of this. Please provide it.

      Edited: 2018-09-02 23:15:41 By

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      Edited: 2018-09-02 23:37:30 By

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      1. Agree objection based on Assad regime is a strawman argument

        1. More like a red herring or maybe an ad hom argument than a strawman. Either way it’s fallacious. Even if Mr. Norton was biased in favor of Assad (and I’ve seen exactly 0 evidence of this) it has nothing to do with his claims here which has nothing to do with Assad or Syria.

  3. In the Reuters story, it says they were at the meeting where the remarks were made. No-one casting doubt on their reporting was at the meeting. The press statements referred to were released after the Reuters story, so it’s unfair to rate the reporting according to information that was not available at the time. There doesn’t appear to be a video of the meeting available but I have reached out to the UN for a transcript.

    1. The way I understand how the UN works is that these independent committees can make recommendations that the UN investigate some human rights matter but cannot make formal announcements on behalf of the UN. The UN makes formal claims only after certain procedures and investigations take place. The reporters ought to have known this. So that the Grayzone contacted the UN for a statement which contradicted that claim, I think it is wholly fair to rate it false.

      1. That’s a fair point. If you take away the headline, I think the story is totally accurate in that regard (but I accept that you shouldn’t have to take away the headline). FWIW the UN just sent me a link to the press release cited by Greyzone and said the panel will publish more today.

    2. Nick read it again. Norton did provide transcript of the meeting, it’s cited in the article and someone did respond – just our supposedly object media self-censored the rebuttal:

      (appx para 35, middle of the transcript, by Yu Jiahua)

      Edited: 2018-09-14 00:31:40 By

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      1. I have no idea why you’re responding to me. I think you meant to respond to Austin?

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