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Hey Cheney: Worried About Al Jazeera? How About Fox News?

Reported by Melanie - January 30, 2005

Part of the Bush administration's effort to "spread democracy" to the Middle East includes an effort to shut down or remake the Qatar-based television station Al Jazeera. In an article in today's New York Times titled, Under Pressure, Qatar May Sell Jazeera Station, reporter Steven R. Wesiman says:

Vice President Dick Cheney, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, former Secretary of State Colin L. Powell and other Bush administration officials have complained heatedly to Qatari leaders that Al Jazeera's broadcasts have been inflammatory, misleading and occasionally false, especially on Iraq.

On April 29, 2004, Dick Cheney said (Cheney Praises Fox News Channel), "It's easy to complain about the press -- I've been doing it for a good part of my career," Cheney said. "It's part of what goes with a free society. What I do is try to focus upon those elements of the press that I think do an effective job and try to be accurate in their portrayal of events."

Evidently complaining about the press has taken on new meaning for Cheney because now his objective seems to be to muzzle press he doesn't like, instead of complain about it. Surely Cheney, and the United States, in its push to "bring democracy to the region" look like screaming hypocrites, as this quote from the Times article shows:

"It's completely two-faced for the United States to try to muzzle the one network with the most credibility in the Middle East, even if it does sometimes say things that are wrong," said an Arab diplomat. "The administration should be working with Al Jazeera and putting people on the air."

In his April 29, 2004 statement, above, Cheney also said, "For example, I end up spending a lot of time watching Fox News, because they're more accurate in my experience, in those events that I'm personally involved in, than many of the other outlets."

Perhaps this administration should start practicing what it preaches before it starts to remake the planet in its own hypocritical image. If it thinks that Al Jazeera's broadcasts have been "inflammatory," "misleading," and "occasionally false," we'd be happy to send them several thousand posts from this site documenting that Fox News Channel's have been too.

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