CBS, Panetta and (Hypothetical) Iranian Nukes

The Monday broadcast of CBS Evening News (12/19/11) began with big news, with anchor Scott Pelley announcing: The secretary of Defense says tonight that the United States will not allow Iran to develop a nuclear weapon. In an interview with CBS News, Leon Panetta says that despite efforts to disrupt their nuclear program, the Iranians have reached a point where they can assemble a bomb in a year or potentially less. To ratchet up the drama, Pelley told viewers that Panetta was aboard “the jet nicknamed the Doomsday Plane. This is the command post where he and the president would […]


Move Over, Taliban–CBS Is the Real Master of Manipulation

CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric (1/27/09) introduced a segment on civilian casualties in Afghanistan by saying, “Our Elizabeth Palmer spoke with the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, who says the Taliban have become masters of manipulating public opinion.” That commander, Gen. David McKiernan, was CBS’s sole on-camera source for the segment, making assertions like “we try to avoid [killing civilians]. The insurgent does it on purpose.” The U.S. military also served as an off-camera source for Palmer as well, cited for claims like “80 percent of Afghan civilians are killed by the Taliban…. But there’s huge frustration that anytime […]