1. Olbermann: Terror Threat a Ruse to Get Tom Ridge on Morning TV The terror threat announcement all a ruse to get onto the Today show? MSNBC's Keith Olbermann rolled out quite a conspiracy theory on Wednesday night, suggesting that "if you are of a suspicious mind, you will already have noticed the timing of today's announcement in the context of developments in Iraq and the President's declining poll numbers." That, he conceded, "is all speculative" but, he insisted, "one timing question may be a lot more substantial." Olbermann proceeded to make much of how after the morning shows on... continue reading
1. Jennings Spikes Confirmation of Sarin, Highlights Damaged Mosque Peter Jennings spikes confirmation of sarin in Iraq. ABC's World News Tonight on Tuesday had time for stories on how the turn over of authority in Iraq is not as "simple" as President Bush claims, how Iraqis are skeptical about Bush's promise to tear down the Abu Ghraib prison, with one man wanting to know if there's a guarantee that Bush "will not torture prisoners in the new prison?", how U.S. forces in Najaf had damaged "one of the most important Moslem shrines" and how Israeli bulldozing of a Gaza neighborhood... continue reading
1. Jennings Implies Army Concedes Video Shows It Bombed a Wedding Following the distribution of a video, given to the AP, which supposedly showed a wedding celebration hours before the U.S. bombed the site killing 40 Iraqis, including children, U.S. Army Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt on Monday showed picture of weapons, explosives and drugs they found at the scene and so, he observed, "the activities that we saw happening on the ground were somewhat inconsistent with a wedding party." But while CBS, CNN and NBC accurately conveyed what the Army found on scene and what Kimmitt meant by "inconsistent," ABC's... continue reading
1. Pew: Five Times More Journalists Are Liberal Than Conservative Journalists at national media outlets are more liberal and less conservative than nine years ago, and while in 1995 they were upset that the media were too critical of President Clinton, they are now disturbed that the media are going too easy on President Bush, a just-released survey conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press found. Five times more national outlet journalists identify themselves as liberal, 34 percent, than conservative, a mere 7 percent. The poll also discovered that while the reporters, editors, producers and... continue reading
1. Nets Push New Abuse Storylines, Jennings Agrees with Rumsfeld Even before the Washington Post on Friday morning splashed more photos from Abu Ghraib, and though a new poll had discovered that "34 percent believe the prisoner abuse scandal was covered 'excessively' by the news media compared to only nine percent saying the beheading received too much coverage," on Thursday night ABC, CBS and NBC all pushed fresh angles on the abuse storyline. ABC's Peter Jennings rationalized his lead story, about "abuse and neglect" committed in their state-side jobs by prison administrators hired to run prisons in Iraq, by citing... continue reading
1. Nets Use Supposed "Wedding Party" Killing to Show Iraqi Morass The supposed U.S. killing of 40 Iraqis in a "wedding party" in Western Iraq led the ABC, CBS and CNN evening newscasts Wednesday night as each portrayed the event as symbolic of why the U.S. is losing support in the region. "We're going to begin this evening with why it is so hard for the United States to make headway in the Middle East," ABC's Peter Jennings intoned as he cited the killing, the court martial for prisoner abuse and how Israel, "using American helicopters and tanks, attacked Palestinians."... continue reading
1. Couric: Aren't "Liberals Controlling the Mainstream Media?" Every time David Brock writes a book bashing conservatives, NBC's Today gives him a platform to promote it as they did on Tuesday to discuss his latest book, The Republican Noise Machine: Right-Wing Media and How It Corrupts Democracy. But this time Today added a twist: Katie Couric didn't fully buy into his premise and she actually suggested there is credence to the idea that the mainstream media tilts left. She proposed: "Aren't most people in journalism, primarily, except for say on Fox, and in certain conservative publications, aren't they for the... continue reading
1. CBS & NBC Tie Assassination to al-Qaeda Terrorist, But Not ABC Now entering its second week: Peter Jennings' refusal to link Abu Musab al-Zarqawi to al-Qaeda. In the wake of the assassination of Iraqi Governing Council chief Izzadine Saleem, CBS's David Hawkins explained from Baghdad, on Monday's CBS Evening News, how "coalition officials say the suicide bombing was probably the work of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the al-Qaeda terrorist who's been blamed for other spectacular bomb attacks and last week's beheading of an American businessman, Nicholas Berg." NBC's Ned Colt relayed from Iraq how "the U.S. military says the attack... continue reading
1. NY Times, CBS and NBC Yearn for a Kerry-McCain "Dream Team" Yearning for a Kerry-McCain "Dream Team." Picking up on a Saturday front page New York Times story about how "some prominent Democrats are angling for" John McCain "to run for Vice President alongside Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts," the CBS Evening News and NBC's Meet the Press promoted the idea which Kerry backers see an beneficial to their candidate. CBS put "Dream Team?" on screen as anchor Thalia Assuras asked, "Many of Kerry's supporters believe the right running mate could give him an edge. Their idea of a... continue reading
1. Jennings Refuses to Link al-Zarqawi to al-Qaeda or bin Laden ABC's Peter Jennings continued on Thursday night to refuse to link Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the terrorist in Iraq believed to have decapitated Nick Berg, to al-Qaeda or Osama bin Laden. Other network anchors weren't so reluctant. CBS's Dan Rather noted how Berg's life "intersected" with the "notorious al-Qaeda figure." Tom Brokaw asserted on NBC that "al-Zarqawi is considered to be a close ally of Osama bin Laden." Jennings, however, described al-Zarqawi only as a "suspected terrorist leader." ABC's Brian Ross then downplayed any active connection as he relayed how... continue reading