In discussion of the revelations in Scott McClellan’s new book that the media was too easy on the administration in the run of to the war, Congressional correspondent Jessica Yellin on Anderson Cooper 360 admitted that she was pressured by the network executives to frame her pieces in a way that made President Bush look positive, even editing her pieces to favor the administration.
The headlines, splashed across The Drudge Report, ABC News and other major news sites last night, were scary indeed: AL QAEDA TAPE TO CALL FOR USE OF WMD
According to the reports, the tape urged jihadists to use “biological, chemical and nuclear weapons to attack the West,” and a quote from an official source followed, adding further credibility:
“There have been several reports that al Qaeda will release a new message calling for the use of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) against civilians,” FBI spokesman Richard Kolko told ABC News in an e-mail.
If confirmed, this would represent an overt threat, and an unusually intense one. However, the headline turned less dire upon closer inspection. A few hours after the story broke, Evan Kohlmann, a terrorism expert who closely tracks Al Qaeda, posted a blog item dismissing the threat as a prank:
TVNL Comment: This is an ongoing, calculated farce - that will not end.
Corrections: In Which the New York Times Perpetuates the Myth It Created -- That Bush Won Florida in 2000
The New York Times did not do its own recount. It did participate in a consortium. Here's what they actually said: "If all the ballots had been reviewed under any of seven single standards, and combined with the results of an examination of overvotes, Mr. Gore would have won, by a very narrow margin." Ford Fessenden And John M. Broder New York Times, November 12, 2001
We have often noted here the special role that New York Times reporter Michael Gordon plays in the national media. For years, he has served as a key conduit for government propaganda aimed at fomenting military aggression, then justifying it once it has begun. In many ways, he has probably been a far more effective tool of the militarists than the Fox News network.
But nonetheless, with Gordon's help, the narrative of the surge's "success" marches on. An anti-American cleric grants government troops permission to enter areas controlled by his militia – and this is ballyhooed as a triumph. Meanwhile, Gordon does not neglect his drumbeating duties in the push for war with Iran: the story is laced with unqualified references to mysterious "Iranian-backed militias" which, we're told, skulked away from Sadr City when al-Maliki flexed his muscles. Readers of the New York Times – and those disseminators of its conventional wisdom further down the media food chain – cannot be allowed to forget that Iraq is seething with perfidious Persia's evil agents, killing Americans in cold blood. Gordon actually shows some restraint in not ending every article with a stirring cry of "Furthermore, Iran delenda est!"
More than 250 breaches of freedom of journalism happened in the Occupied Territories by Israeli forces during 2007. And the Palestinian territories under Israel’s occupation ranked last year at number 158 in the annual World Press Freedom out of 169 countries. How does this match with your claim of Israel’s free press?
- "NYTimes Cleanses Thor Hearne's Record, Scrubs Front-Page Reference to the GOP Vote-Suppressor's 'American Center for Voting Rights'"
- Military analysts named in Times exposé appeared or were quoted more than 4,500 times on broadcast nets, cables, NPR
- Newspaper Criticized For Publishing Photo
- Frances Townsend Joins CNN: Latest White House Official To Spin With The Media
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