Sep
01
2013

Which Syrian Chemical Attack Account Is More Credible?

Secretary of State John Kerry making the case that Damascus has used chemical weapons (US State Department)

Which account of the mass deaths in Syria should be given more credence: the U.S. government version introduced by Secretary of State John Kerry, or the article published by the Minnesota-based news site Mint Press? The government account expresses "high confidence that the Syrian government carried out a chemical weapons attack." The Mint report bore the headline "Syrians in Ghouta Claim Saudi-Supplied Rebels Behind Chemical Attack."

Aug
06
2013

Amazon, WikiLeaks, the Washington Post and the CIA

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What does Amazon's CEO Jeff Bezos have in store for the Washington Post? No one can say for sure, but we can say that when Amazon didn't like what WikiLeaks was publishing it shut down access to the site.

Aug
01
2013

The Government Can't Prove Bradley Manning Hurt Anyone–but Joe Klein Knows

JoeKleinHardball

The government isn't having much luck showing the real world harm done by Bradley Manning and WikiLeaks. Perhaps they should call in Time columnist Joe Klein–he knows "for a fact" that bad things happened.

Jul
31
2013

NBC Misreports Collateral Murder Video

nbcn-manning

Covering the Manning verdict on NBC Nightly News, anchor Brian Williams said that Pentagon correspondent Jim Miklaszewski had "covered this story from the start." But you'd have a hard time believing that when you heard the way he described one of the most talked-about aspects of the trial.

Jul
12
2013

Did NYT Tarnish 'Journalistic Reputation' of WikiLeaks?

The New York Times reports that Wikileaks' "journalistic reputation was…undercut by two prominent articles published by the New York Times." But if anyone's journalistic reputation was hurt by those articles, it was the Times'.

Jul
09
2013

Washington Post's WikiLeaks/Snowden/Greenwald Conspiracy Theory

Walter Pincus

To Washington Post columnist Walter Pincus, something about NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden just doesn't smell right. Lucky for him he gets space in a prestigious newspaper to work out his hunch–apparently without any editors or factcheckers to get in his way.

Jun
19
2013

Michael Hastings, Bridge-Burning Journalist (1980-2013)

Michael Hastings

What Tim Dickinson called Hastings' "enthusiastic breaches of the conventions of access journalism" were what enabled him to report the unguarded assessments of the officers running the occupation of Afghanistan.

Jun
12
2013

Edward Snowden and the State-Identified Journalist

Josh Marshall (Bill Moyers Journal)

Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo (6/11/13) wrote about Edward Snowden yesterday in a way that helped make it clear why so many in the press seem upset that the former NSA consultant revealed the extent of U.S. spying programs aimed at the American public. "I'm a journalist," Marshall wrote. And back when I did national security reporting I tried to get leaks. So I don't think leaks are always wrong…. In fact, leaks are an absolutely critical safety valve against government wrongdoing and/or excessive secrecy. But officials who leak classified information are "breaking an oath and committing a crime," […]

Jun
07
2013

FAIR TV: Bradley Manning, Afghan Atrocity, David Gregory's Phony Gotcha

What's the press saying about the Bradley Manning trial? We take a look at a strange CBS Evening News report about a U.S. atrocity in Afghanistan, and David Gregory thinks he found an Obama flip-flop.

Jun
07
2013

Bob McChesney on Internet Giants and the National Security State

Last week on CounterSpin, we spoke with scholar and media historian Bob McChesney about his new book Digital Disconnect. His closing thoughts seems especially relevant in light of the blockbuster reporting this week from the Guardian and Washington Post.

Jun
05
2013

Brian Williams Makes the Case for Putting NBC on Trial

NBC's Brian Williams called Bradley Manning "the man who may have put U.S. military secrets in the hands of Osama bin Laden." But giving classified information to the public is something that news outlets–including NBC News–routinely do, and each time they do it they too could be accused of "aiding the enemy."

Jun
04
2013

Bradley Manning on TV Network News

manning-nbc

If you care at all about war and peace, press freedom, whistleblowers' rights and the public's right to know what the government is doing, the trial of Bradley Manning is of enormous consequence. It would have been hard for NBC News to come up with a more hostile framing.

May
15
2013

The Problem With Journalism? Scott Pelley Blames the Internet

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CBS anchor Scott Pelley declared, "We are getting big stories wrong, over and over again.'" Well, that sounds like pretty dramatic self-criticism. But, as usual with corporate media self-critiques, Pelley's criticism mostly misses the mark.