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Fox News “Just Asking:” Is NY Times Deliberately Putting America In Danger?

Reported by Ellen - May 26, 2010 -

Never mind how Bill O’Reilly refused to accept any responsibility for his incendiary hate mongering against abortion provider Dr. George Tiller after he was gunned down by an anti-abortion zealot. And never mind how Fox News’ own Geraldo Rivera was expelled from Iraq for revealing crucial details of a future military operation. But when the New York Times printed a story saying that General Petraeus has ordered an expansion of covert military operations, Fox News trotted out their extremist “military analyst” Ralph Peters to “ask” him if the Times had put the country in danger. Not only did Peters think so, he suggested that the editor had done so deliberately. To be fair, O'Reilly did a decent enough job of challenging Peters. But O'Reilly also repeatedly gave him openings to make the kinds of accusations O'Reilly almost surely knew “military">Peters would make. With video.

“So why do they (The New York Times) do it?” O’Reilly asked Peters, in what I can only think was a deliberate effort to give Peters an opportunity to go further on the attack against the Times. O’Reilly’s voice was disbelieving but, given “military">Peters' history, it's hard to believe he didn’t know what he was setting up. “Does (Times head) Sulzberger dislike America that much that he wants to hurt American citizens? Or just does he not know any better?”

Never mind, “we report, you decide.” Peters told the audience the answer, without having done any real investigation – at least none that he mentioned. “Let’s look at the evidence. The New York Times, his paper, celebrated Abu Ghraib with hundreds of front page, grim photos.”

“Absolutely true,” O’Reilly agreed.

“They tipped our wiretapping program against terrorists. They tipped our program about going after terrorists’ financing, and now this… Highlighting that we’re gonna do operations on the ground in places like Iran, that’s a different ballgame.” Not so different from Geraldo, but I digress.

O’Reilly “defended” the Times by saying he “guessed” the motive was that the Times doesn’t “like the military so much” and that “America’s doing bad things.” But O’Reilly further prodded Peters by asking, “Is (Sulzberger) a man who hates this country? Does he just have no regard for his country?” O'Reilly sounded disbelieving but he almost certainly knew how Peters would respond.

"Two separate questions," Peters said. "One, I think he’s a man with no regard for his country. A citizen of the world, one of the globally elite. As to whether he hates his country, I can’t judge that. I can only tell you with certainty that he and his paper are damaging our country.”

Has Peters ever even met Sulzberger? He didn’t say. O'Reilly didn't ask. Nobody mentioned the concept of freedom of the press.


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