The most breaking of breaking news
Yesterday it was the Washington Post that revealed to Americans startling past events, and today it's the Associated Press's turn to shock news readers: an American who vanished on a business trip in Iran seven years ago actually turns out to be a CIA spy on an unapproved mission. When all was finally sleuthed out within the government, it sparked "one of the most serious scandals" in CIA history, and yet it was kept entirely under wraps -- until now. "Read the lead - you'll drop everything and finish this AP story," Philadelphia Inquirer's Jonathan Tamari predicted. "'That was just a cover story' - so begins incredible story of an American missing in Iran, 3 years in the works," shared Nathaniel Popper at the New York Times. "What a bombshell from AP on the CIA and Iran," The Economist's Gady Epstein reacted after reading. "Remember when Obama's DOJ seized @AP phone records? Feels even more chilling knowing this," remarked Ron Fournier at the National Journal. Huffington Post's Mehdi Hasan commented, "Who says Homeland is all made up, eh?"
Because of the implications wrought by revealing a spy's identity, the AP's directory of media relations Paul Colford felt compelled to also post an explanation as to why the AP is publishing story about missing American tied to CIA. Fortune's Ryan Bradley shared from the piece, "Publishing articles that help the public hold their government to account is part of what journalism is for..." "The @AP today is publishing an article about serious blunders at the CIA and an effort to cover them up," Ron Fournier continued the quote. "With no more leads to follow, we have concluded that the importance of the story justifies publication," Andrew Edgecliffe-Johnson at Financial Times detailed a final quote.
In other breaking news, Politifact named its "Lie of the Year" -- and it's "If you like your health care plan, you can keep it." Now what say you to that?
And finally, North Korea's state news agency KCNA released a statement on Jang Song Thaek's execution that might be the world's cruelest obituary. "For connoisseurs of Communist cant, here's the North Korean press release on Kim's uncle's execution," tweeted The Browser (not a journalist but a Twitter personality whose repeatedly retweeted quote was too good to not mention!). "Here’s the full KCNA statement on Jang’s execution. Even by North Korean standards, it’s strong stuff," observed Martyn Williams at IDG News Service. "North Korean news agency copy writers may secretly be the greatest satirists ever," was the response from RTÉ's Philip Boucher-Hayes. "KCNA gets spicy: 'despicable human scum Jang, who was worse than a dog, perpetrated thrice-cursed acts of treachery,'" Foreign Policy's Benjamin Pauker plucked out a choice quote. Meanwhile, Steven Nelson at U.S. News & World Report found another flabbergasting detail: "One crime of Kim Jong Un's executed uncle: 'unwillingly standing up from his seat and half-heartedly clapping.'"