In its effort to vet one of the leading GOP presidential candidates, Dr. Ben Carson, the New York Times didn’t properly vet its primary source in this vetting, former CIA officer Duane Clarridge—an indicted liar and overseer of Contra death squads in Central America.
This week on CounterSpin: The new film Kill the Messenger tells the story of investigative journalist Gary Webb, whose 1996 Dark Alliance series exposed links between drug traffickers and the US-backed Contras in Nicaragua. Prestige outlets like the New York Times devoted serious resources to going after Webb in an attempt to discredit his reporting. We’ll go back to the CounterSpin archives to hear from Webb himself.
Also on the show: You might think you hear enough about abortion in the press. A new book says: We need to talk about abortion differently. PRO: Reclaiming Abortion Rights is the latest from author, poet and Nation columnist Katha Pollitt. We’ll talk with her about reframing that conversation.
Vol. 26, Number 5
‘How Short Our Memory Is’ Looking back at the 10th anniversary of the Iraq invasion, MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough (Morning Joe, 3/19/13) scorned media outlets and others who failed to acknowledge their responsibility for leading the country into war: “The very same people who spent years beating up George Bush were the very ones beating the drum for Iraq’s regime change and Saddam Hussein’s ouster,” he said. “The New York Times grimly warned of the threat posed by Iraq in the final years of the Clinton administration. And on the eve of President Bush’s first inauguration, the Washington Post called Iraq’s […]
As the Bush administration carries out what the New York Times (4/5/05) describes as a “concerted effort” to block the left-wing Sandinista party from returning to power in Nicaragua, U.S. media are themselves returning to the kind of distorted reporting on Nicaragua that characterized coverage during the 1980s as Washington waged war on that country. The New York Times‘ April 5 article on the administration’s anti-Sandinista campaign provided a prime example of this one-sided and inaccurate media treatment. The article, by Ginger Thompson, characterized the U.S. attempt to overthrow the Sandinista government as part of “the global struggle against Communism”–though […]
Although rigged elections during the Somoza era raised hardly an eyebrow in Washington, Nicaragua’s November 1984 election was pilloried by the White House and the mainstream media. Pre-election reporting was hostile, coverage of the actual balloting was hijacked by hysteria over phantom Soviet MIG jets in Nicaragua, and a few months later many journalists seemed to forget that elections had even taken place. A New York Times editorial (2/13/85) lambasted the Sandinistas, who garnered 67 percent of the vote, for refusing “to subject their power to the consent of the Nicaraguan people.” Yet according to the vast majority of independent […]