When it comes to US foreign policy and warmaking in the Middle East, you're not supposed to talk about oil. But the network newscasts went out of their way to let you know that Iraq was making your next trip to the gas station more expensive.
There's no doubt that the sex scandal that prompted CIA director David Petraeus's sudden resignation late last week is a big story. New details–verified or not–seem to arrive almost by the hour. But the reason it seems to have shaken so many media figures is because Petraeus was uniquely beloved by many in the corporate media, who considered him both an accessible source and a war hero. NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams called him (11/9/12) a "a man of such sterling reputation," and confided on the air to one guest that "it is impossible to be a member of […]
Before the first presidential debate, CNN sent out a press release to promote the idea that they'd be doing factchecking of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. It's kind of sad that this would be considered a novel enough idea to warrant a press release, but the actual factchecking was nothing you'd want to call attention to. Anchor Wolf Blitzer cued up the night's first "reality check" from correspondent John Berman, "on the president's claim that Mitt Romney wants a $5 trillion tax cut." And here comes Berman's factcheck: Now let's look at the facts here. Mitt Romney does propose across-the-board […]
Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor acknowledged on Al Jazeera English (4/14/12) that Iranian leaders have never called for Israel to be "wiped" off the map. Meridor agreed with interviewer Teymoor Nabili's suggestion that the supposed remarks were never actually made; Iranian leaders, Meridor said, come basically ideologically, religiously, with the statement that Israel is an unnatural creature, it will not survive. They didn't say "we'll wipe it out," you are right, but [that] it will not survive, it is a cancerous tumor, it should be removed. Hostile words, to be sure, but not the menacing threat endlessly reported in […]
With discussions of a military attack on Iran circulating among U.S. and Israeli political elites, CNN has added fuel to the fire with a series of alarmist reports about supposedly Iranian-linked terrorist operatives inside the United States who are ready to strike. On the March 21 broadcast of the Situation Room, anchor Wolf Blitzer announced that there could be "a terrifying new reason for all of us to be potentially very worried about U.S. tensions with Iran." What's the terrifying potential worry? Some U.S. officials apparently claim: Iran has a large terrorist-trained force right here in the United States right […]
During an interview on CNN last night (5/1/11) with New York firefighter and 9/11 first responder Kenny Specht: BLITZER: Did you ever give up hope, Kenny, that the U.S. would kill bin Laden? SPECHT: No, but I'd be lying to you, Wolf, I'd be lying to you if I thought about it every night. No, I didn't give up hope. That's all we had. That's all we had. It's like anything else, though. It's just sometimes we think that when it's not spoken about anymore, we wonder really what's being done. I mean, we're in a quagmire, for lack of […]
One of the main assumptions of the final weeks of coverage of the congressional debate over healthcare reform was that the public was opposed to the White House plan. But some polling analysis shows that this wasn't the case. Barry Sussman noted this at the Nieman Watchdog on March 5. A McClatchy/Ipsos poll from late February told the usual tale: 41 percent supported the plan, 47 opposed. Sussman wrote: But the pollsters went a step further, asking those opposed–509 people in all–if they were against the proposals because they "don't go far enough to reform healthcare" or because they go […]