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In 2005, three Fox hosts reacted to the terrorist attacks on London's mass transit system with callous comments that drew heated denunciations abroad. Brit Hume, for example, said his first reaction upon hearing the news was to see the attacks as a way to make a quick buck in the futures markets. John Gibson suggested the real tragedy was not that the attacks happened, but that they didn't happen in France.
Now Fox has insulted Canada, attacking the country's military even as four Canadian soldiers were killed in attacks in Afghanistan:
The Canadian government has demanded an apology from Fox News for "despicable" and "disgusting" comments made on one of its late-night programs.
The government was incensed by a recent talk-show segment on the American conservative cable network that poked fun at Canada and the Canadian military.
A group of pundits took turns trashing Canada and its reliability as an ally in fighting terrorism last week as four more Canadian soldiers were killed in separate attacks in Afghanistan.
Defence Minister Peter MacKay requested an apology just before leaving for Canadian Forces Base Trenton, where he was to attend a repatriation ceremony with the families of the latest soldiers killed.
"It's crass, it's insensitive, it's in fact disgusting, given the timing," MacKay said.
"There should be an apology - to the families in particular, and to the Canadian Forces and to Canada generally - given the sacrifice and the commitment that we've demonstrated in Afghanistan."
Canadian soldiers have been fighting in Afghanistan since 2001 and have spent the last four years in the country's most violent region.
Canada has lost 116 soldiers in Afghanistan.
A Wall Street Journal article reported that as first lady, Hillary Clinton "sparked outrage after embracing Suha Arafat, wife of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, shortly after Mrs. Arafat accused Israel of using poison gas against Palestinians." But the article did not note that Clinton reportedly "condemned Mrs. Arafat hours later, after receiving, she said, an official translation of her remarks."
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This was the Vietnam-driven, Time doomsday cover for the issue published just weeks after the new Democratic president was sworn into office in 1993:
Now here's the latest Vietnam-driven, Newsweek doomsday cover for the current issue, published just days after the new Democratic president was sworn into office:
Aside for the bogus way the news weeklies jumped at the chance to hang a foreign policy "Vietnam" around the neck of brand new Democratic presidents, behold the especially surreal logic connected to the Newsweek cover and its attempt to connect Obama, in office for less than 14 days, to the battle for Afghanistan, which the Bush administration oversaw for nearly seven years.
The Drudge Report featured the headline, "Iran Nuke 'This Year'..." linking to an article on the British-based Sky News website. But contrary to Drudge's headline, the Sky News article did not report that Iran would obtain a nuclear weapon this year; it reported that a study by the International Institute for Strategic Studies predicts that sometime in 2009, Iran "will probably reach the point at which it has produced enough low-enriched uranium to make a nuclear bomb -- though it would first have to enrich it further." The article quoted the study's author saying that "being able to enrich uranium is not the same as having a nuclear weapon."
The Boston Globe and The Washington Post echoed the discredited accusation, advanced by conservative media figures, that Sen. Hillary Clinton did not condemn controversial comments by Suha Arafat during a 1999 trip to the West Bank, where Arafat, according to the Globe, "launched into an unscripted tirade accusing Israel of poisoning Palestinian children." In fact, Clinton reportedly "condemned Mrs. Arafat hours later, after receiving, she said, an official translation of her remarks."
CNN stands by the video it aired from Gaza, and which right-wing warbloggers tagged as "obviously fake" because an anonymous reader at Little Green Footballs, claiming to be a doctor, announced a CPR scene at a Gaza hospital looked weird. It's part of the warbloggers' crusade to convince each other that it's untrustworthy journalists who are concocting tales of suffering and violence in Gaza.
Because when you unleash the loons, you never know where they're going to run.
Over the years, the warblogging site LGF has led an online jihad against war zone journalists and specifically Middle Eastern stringers working for wire services, claiming they concoct the news--they fabricate violence--in order to spread terrorist propaganda. That local Arab or Muslim journalists are incapable of telling the truth about breaking news and that every dispatch they write, especially if it's for the AP, and every photo they file, especially if its for Reuters, must be dissected and mulled over and questioned by right-wing bloggers, lots of whom have no expertise in journalism.
This whole deranged online movement provides all sorts of comfort for war-loving bloggers as it allows them to attack and demean journalists and Muslims/Arabs at the same time.
The phony crusade has been on display since the launch of the Gaza incursion, as supposedly sharp-eyed bloggers, thousands of miles away from the action, stand vigil, looking to save the world from fabricated reports of violence. This week the swarm descended and casually accused a journalist of photoshopping a picture from Gaza. Of just making stuff up. Of taking photos of explosions and then digitally doctoring them and then sending them out on the wire service.
Why? Because the media are the enemy. Because that's what Arab/Muslims stringers do. They quote phony Baghdad police chiefs like Jamil Hussein in order to spread insurgent lies. Actually, on second thought, warbloggers would prefer you leave that embarrassing episode alone. (Still waiting for a collective warblogging apology/acknowledgment/retraction on that one.)
Anyway, here's the Gaza photo that set warbloggers all atwitter:
Except here's a photo of the exact same explosion from another angle:
So eventually LGF had to call off the hounds and assure everyone that this photo had not been photoshopped, but that warbloggers still needed to scan wire photos and be on the look up for manufactured images of Middle Eastern violence.
Because, y'know, there so little actual violence in the region these days, journalists have to stage it and make it up.
UPDATE: LGF has already launched another media-hating crusade regarding footage aired by CNN from inside Gaza. It was a report featuring a freelance cameraman whose brother and cousin were killed in a rocket attack. The warbloggers are in DEFCON 5 mode because--get this--an anonymous LGF reader, who claimed to be a doctor, announced that a hospital scene from Gaza captured in the report was clearly staged because when a doctor on film performed CPR on a victim, it just looked totally weird.
Normal people, please take two steps back for context: Nearly 800 people have been killed in Gaza the last two weeks, yet warbloggers are focused on launching a anti-media jihad based on the fact that an anonymous reader announced a single scene from a Gaza hospital looked strange.
Behold the right-wing blogosphere.
And just out of curiosity, are there any conservative adults who are the slightest bit concerned about what warbloggers are doing to the online movement? Or are they okay with having these folks running the show?
Ethan Bronner in the Times reports on how the Israeli government has banned journalists from entering Gaza to report on Israel's invasion or the previous bombing missions. The issue has been a hotly debated one in recent days and seems central to the question of covering international conflicts.
Yet amazingly, the Times does not include a single quote from anyone at the Times itself--an editor or correspondent--regarding the Gaza ban and how it impacts their efforts to try to cover the conflict. In fact, the Times article doesn't quote any journalists in the region about the ban. The article simply references a statement issued by the foreign press association.
Last night, CNN's Anderson Cooper also reported on the Gaza ban and, quite logically, he interviewed journalists in the region (including those who work for CNN) to get their opinion. For some reason the Times had no interest in interviewing journalists for an article about journalism.
The Times did however, quote four separate Israeli government officials.
BTW, if Howard Kurtz thinks the ban on journalists in Gaza is such a big deal, as he claims today it is in his online column with a passing reference, than why doesn't he write about it for the Washington Post newspaper? To date, the Post has not published a single news article about the ban.
MSNBC's Chris Matthews falsely claimed that President-elect Barack Obama and Sen. Hillary Clinton, his reported pick for secretary of state, disagreed on whether "we should make the Iranian Revolutionary Guard a terrorist group" and on whether "we should have permanent bases in Iraq."
MSNBC's David Shuster baselessly suggested Sen. Barack Obama "bear[s] a little bit of responsibility" for Jesse Jackson's reported comments about how U.S. policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would change under an Obama administration -- even though Jackson is not part of the Obama campaign -- because during the previous debate, Shuster said, Sen. John McCain was "pretty clear" in answering the question of whether the U.S. would commit troops to Israel if it was attacked by Iran, whereas Obama was not. In fact, Obama and McCain gave similar responses in key respects.
The New York Post falsely claimed that Sen. Barack Obama "once insisted that US forces invade Pakistan" and that he "opposes sanctions" against Iran (emphasis in the original). In fact, Obama has never said he would "invade Pakistan." Also, he has stated that he favors sanctions on Iran and introduced legislation to enable state and local governments to divest from Iran.
Summary: In an editorial, Investor's Business Daily wrote that after Kenyan politician Raila Odinga lost his country's presidential election in late 2007, "angry Odinga supporters crying fraud sparked riots that resulted in some 1,500 deaths. Amid his ancestral country's civil unrest, [Sen. Barack] Obama took time out from the campaign trail to phone Odinga to voice his support." However, while IBD claimed that Obama phoned Odinga to "voice his support," Obama and his campaign have reportedly said that he pressed Odinga to conduct unconditional negotiations to end the violence during the phone conversation, which was reportedly approved by the State Department.