Fox News has continued to push a story based on manipulated video, alleging that President Joe Biden had disrespected fallen U.S. troops by looking down at his watch during the dignified transfer ceremony at Dover Air Force Base.
An analysis by Media Matters found that Fox has mentioned Biden reportedly looking at his watch during the ceremony in at least 18 segments.
As others have also noted, by that point the ceremony had ended with the remains of service members killed during the evacuation of Kabul offloaded from the plane, and the vans carrying them were then departing from the tarmac. Everyone was then removing their hands from their hearts, and Biden shifted his arms before clasping them behind his back in the space of a few seconds.
And indeed, at the time a Fox News live panel consisting of co-anchors Mike Emanuel and Jacqui Heinrich, Fox national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin, and news correspondent David Spunt continued to deliver live commentary, remarking only on the solemnity of the ceremony and Biden’s role as “comforter-in-chief.”
But by the next day, Fox had begun showing the video in slow motion, artificially creating the misleading appearance of Biden looking intently at his watch.
Fox has frequently shown the video in slow motion, thus exaggerating the appearance of Biden seeming to look at his watch, including on the network’s purported “straight news” programs such as Special Report with Bret Baier. During another segment discussing the matter, on Tuesday’s edition of Outnumbered, Baier later floated the possibility that Biden may have been looking at the rosary he also wears on his left wrist in remembrance of his deceased son Beau.
This coverage stands in stark contrast, as Media Matters has previously noted, to the lengths the network previously went to downplay reports last year that then-President Donald Trump had called fallen U.S. soldiers “losers” and “suckers” — even after those reports had been confirmed by a Fox News reporter.