AP Reports ‘Breached Basic Journalistic Principles’

In his latest “Dispatch from the Bolivarian Revolution”, blogger Eric Wingerter (, 7/18/09) asks, “Man oh man, how bad does AP reporting have to get before a group of Latin American studies professors from top U.S. universities decides they need to take out a FULL-PAGE AD in the Columbia Journalism Review to respond?”

His answer is “Bad bad”–as illustrated in the ad’s text:

The Associated Press has breached basic journalistic principles with these false reports:

[Hugo] Chavez initially suggested the synagogue attack might have been carried out by Jews eager to portray his government as anti-Semitic.

–AP February 8, 2009

Only five months after urging world leaders to back their armed struggle, he [Chavez] said that armed guerrilla movements are “history.”

–AP June 10, 2008

THESE STATEMENTS ARE FALSE, and on both occasions, the AP has admitted that they are false.

Saying that Chavez “never called on anyone to support the armed struggle of the FARC–rather, he had called on the FARC to abandon armed struggle,” the ad goes on to explain how, “far from blaming Jews from an attack on a synagogue, he denounced the attack as anti-Semitic and took prompt action to find and arrest the attackers.”

See the FAIR magazine Extra!: “Corrupt Data: Taking On the Claim that Chavez Is On the Take” (11-12/06) by Gregory Wilpert.

Also listen to letter signatory NYU history professor Greg Grandin on FAIR’s radio show CounterSpin: “Greg Grandin on Honduras Coup” (7/3/09).