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The Weblog at The View from the Core - Thu. 07/15/04 06:06:31 PM

Novak vs. Wilson

And, mainstream media ignores Joseph Wilson's recent exposure as a liar.

Robert Novak writes at TownHall today about how the recent report from the Senate Intelligence [sic] Committee has backed him up against Joseph Wilson (brackets in original):

.... For a year, Democrats have been belaboring President Bush about 16 words in his 2003 State of the Union address in which he reported Saddam Hussein's attempt to buy uranium from Africa, based on official British information. Wilson has been lionized in liberal circles for allegedly contradicting this information on a CIA mission and then being punished as a truth-teller. Now, for Intelligence Committee Democrats, it is as though the Niger question and Joe Wilson have vanished from the earth.
Because a U.S. Justice Department special prosecutor is investigating whether any crime was committed when my column first identified Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, as a CIA employee, on advice of counsel I have not written on the subject since last October. However, I feel constrained to describe how the Intelligence Committee report treats the Niger-Wilson affair because it has received scant coverage except in The Washington Post, Knight-Ridder newspapers, briefly and belatedly in The New York Times and few other media outlets.
The unanimously approved report said, "interviews and documents provided to the Committee indicate that his wife, a CPD (CIA counterproliferation division) employee, suggested his name for the trip." That's what I reported, and what Wilson flatly denied and still does.
Plame sent out an internal CIA memo saying that "my husband has good relations with both the PM [prime minister] and the former Minister of Mines (not to mention lots of French contacts), both of whom could possibly shed light on this sort of activity." A State Department analyst told the committee about an inter-agency meeting in 2002 that was "apparently convened by [Wilson's] wife who had the idea to dispatch [him] to use his contacts to sort out the Iraq-Niger uranium issue." ....

See also The Novak Exception and Demomediagate.

Here's a related article by Tim Graham at NRO today:

If the national media were teaching college journalism students their theory of political coverage this year, the theory's name would be Another Problem for Bush. It puts news in a very partisan box. If a fact, a quote, or an allegation casts the president in a negative light, then it is news, pure and simple. If incoming news developments contradict that theory — even if previous massively hyped anti-Bush firestorms start to fizzle — they shall be ignored. Reporters must never disassemble a previously assembled Problem for Bush.
On Friday evening and into the new week, President Bush was (as always) "clearly on the defensive" against the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence's report on prewar intelligence assessments. But on Saturday morning, Washington Post reporter Susan Schmidt actually showed signs of having read the committee report (do TV news people read reports, or just reports on reports?). She found that Joseph C. Wilson IV, the former ambassador to Gabon who declared there was no Iraqi attempt to acquire uranium in Niger, "was specifically recommended for the mission by his wife, a CIA employee, contrary to what he has said publicly."
Journalists who cared about reporting the truth — and the truth-telling problems of the author of The Politics of Truth — would recognize the error of their previous reporting and interviewing and celebrating of Wilson, which broke out in sweaty ardor a year ago. But the record of press coverage in the last few days shows that truth is not the highest national media value. Bashing Bush is.
Let's review how fervently certain national media outlets have promoted Joe Wilson's conspiratorial storyline about Plamegate, and how they have failed to follow up in the last few days....

For more, see Joseph Wilson, Liar and Joseph Wilson, Liar: Part II.

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Thu. 07/15/04 06:06:31 PM
Categorized as Media & Political.


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