In reporting on the Bush administration's allegations about Iran's role in Iraq, media outlets have covered the matter in a muddled, incomplete manner, omitting any skeptical or critical analysis of these allegations, which suggests, in the words of washingtonpost.com's Dan Froomkin, that "the lessons we should have learned from Iraq may not have been learned at all."
Reporting on allegations by anonymous U.S. military officials that Iran is supplying explosively formed penetrators (EFPs) to Shiite fighters in Iraq, neither CBS' David Martin nor Fox News' Bret Baier mentioned that Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has reportedly said that he has seen no evidence directly linking the Iranian government to the EFPs in Iraq.
In their January 17 coverage of the Bush administration's "innovative" new approach to domestic surveillance, numerous television outlets called the development a "major change," a "sharp reversal," and an "about-face," but not one noted that the administration's explanations of its new approach have been highly ambiguous, leaving significant questions about the extent to which the administration is actually ceding authority to the courts.
In recent interviews with President Bush, Jim Lehrer and Scott Pelley did not challenge several false or misleading claims that President Bush made about Iraq.
A CBSNews.com article misrepresented the findings of the network's own poll to claim that "45 percent are in favor of the so-called troop 'surge,' while 48 percent are opposed." The poll question resulting in the 45 percent-48 percent split did not address President Bush's expected proposal for an increase of U.S. troops in Iraq.
While NBC has aired a segment on President Bush's "signing statement" on a postal reform bill that "quietly claimed sweeping new powers to open Americans' mail without a judge's warrant," ABC, CBS, and CNN have largely ignored the story, and ABC reported that Bush "acquired new powers" and suggested that they were "included" the bill.