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Fox Spins Sarah Palin's Visit to the UN as Heroic - Exactly the Opposite of What it Sounds Like it Will Be

Reported by Melanie - September 22, 2008 -

Richard Miniter was a guest today (September 22, 2008) on Your World w/Neil Cavuto in a segment captioned, "Who Says Sarah Palin Needs to Wow the UN Crowd This Week?" If I'd been blindfolded and the names and some of the countries had been changed, I would swear I was listening to Fox back in the day — three or four years ago — when it seemed that every other guest railed against the UN, "old Europe," the French and anyone else who didn't do exactly what we wanted them to do.

Cavuto opened the segment with, "Well, who says that Governor Sarah Palin needs to wow the UN crowd this week? Maybe she should just tick them off." (Great. Just what we need.) She isn't meeting with French president Nicolas Sarkozy, UK prime minister Gordon Brown so "what signal might she be trying to send with the folks she is meeting with?"

(My guess is that "she" isn't sending any signal. My guess is that the McCain campaign has her on a short leash and they're doing all the "signaling.")

Enter Richard Miniter. Cavuto said she's meeting with Georgia's Saakashvili which "isn't too enlightening for Vladmir Putin" and with Colombia's "Uribe who is sort of persona non grata at the UN," so, "what do you make of choosing those two?"

Miniter said she's meeting with alies of the US who are "fighting for democracy" in "highly dangerous and complicated circumstances." They're not "sending her out to meet the junior varsity of diplomats, you know, people from France, Germany, ah, Britain, ah, which, really, there are no serious issues on the table. She's getting the hard cases and she's proving that as a vice presidential nominee, she can handle that." She can "meet with embattled alies," where "even a stray word" could complicate relations with other countries. She's "taking on the hard cases" and that shows that the McCain campaign thinks "the number one foreign policy challenge is the war on terror." She's meeting with people who matter to "future US policy." She can "snub the UN all she wants. It's not going to hurt her, it's going to help her" with the GOP base.

Cavuto said, "Yeah," Democrats say "we have to improve the US image and part of that is reaching out to these guys," but what Palin is doing is "just the opposite; sending a message that we like to be liked but it's not crucial that we be liked."

Miniter agreed: "Right. Contrast this to Obama's trip" where he was speaking to "mass rallies" in Germany — "Oh, that's ominous" — or his meetings in London and Paris. "He's meeting with our alies of l945, and our former enemy of l945" but Palin is "meeting with our alies of today." Obama "was all about the past, about showiness, about trying to impress people who, for better or for worse, are fundamentally anti-American. Whereas Palin is reaching out to people who are pro-American, who share America's policy beliefs about spreading democracy; about defeating terrorism," a "much, much harder task and a much more adult one. The contrast between her and Obama is really revealing."

Comment: The contrast in Fox's coverage is what's really revealing. Just 30 minutes earlier, at the end of Studio B, Shepard Smith hosted (and agreed with) P. J. Crowley in a segment about Russia "sending warships on an exercise near Venezuela." Crowley said "Russia is a great country. It can play a constructive role in the world but if Vladmir Putin wants to identify himself with some minor-league leaders like Hugo Chavez, he diminishes his stature...and I think that's what the rest of the world is going to see."

I wonder if anyone has ever sued Fox for whiplash.