(JollofNews) – Between 1972 and 1976, Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein of The Washington Post, became the two most famous journalists in America, as they toiled to uncover the dirty tricks that was the hallmark of the Nixon administration.
The Watergate scandal as it is often called lead to the indictment of 40 White House staff and the resignation of President Richard Nixon. To read the Washington Post’s article republished by Kibaaro News about the Gambian coup plotters of 30th December 2014, written as a step by step investigative piece, certainly suggests the Post has lost none of its captivating excellence to draw the reader into the whole “shooting match”.
The Post’s informer in those days was referred to as “Deep throat” with this piece similarly quoting some sources that prefer to remain anonymous. The article suggests very strongly that US intelligence operatives were aware of the insurgents’ plans to confront the presidency in the Gambia, with guns and equipment bought in the US and smuggled in canisters through the Gambian Port Authority.
What is disturbing is the allegation that US counter intelligence agents, informed their Gambian counterparts in advance of the operation. We recall the article by Foroyaa, questioning the Gambian government’s news blackout about the unfortunate episode for some days after the event.
President Jammeh was in Dubai and the Vice President was nowhere to be seen. Meanwhile, several soldiers were left dead and others were fleeing the country and others sentenced to death. The article raises several issues, that the Post leaves to be concluded by the further trials set for those who have either pleaded guilty or not guilty in American courts for their role in this failed military operation.
As the situation is still under the jurisdiction of the US courts, I will not comment on the merits or de-merits of the case. But the question of the possible failure of the US intelligence agencies to prevent this appalling lost of lives and the arrest of scores of family members of the accused including children, with not so much as an objection by the US government, is a matter that confuses any objective onlooker.
More of my confusion comes in the wake of the interview given by the American senior diplomat in Banjul, Mr Joseph Stafford, whose language to the dissident Gambian citizenry must leave them in a state of limbo regarding their cause to restore democracy, justice and human rights in their homeland. While commending the Gambia’s assistance to peace and security in the region and its assistance in combating terrorism, Mr Stafford ignored the question of Gambia’s appalling human rights situation to his annual report due to be published sometime in the future.
Whilst we appreciate the fact that he is a diplomat returning to a familiar territory and not wishing to rock the diplomatic boat, I am afraid that Mr Stafford’s limp-wristed bowing to the Gambian leader, smacks of diplomacy of the lowest kind. The Washington Post’s direct and revealing commentary is commendable in the fact that they have called a spade a spade. This leaves the US journalists with some credibility which is sadly lacking in their government. They have exposed President “every body’s friend” Obama and his lack of substance and standards that leave the United States’ reputation as a friend to common people in tatters. Am I surprised? Not at all. Let me assure the Americans that the Gambian people have a long memory.
Bravo The Washington Post.