Were U.S. Media “Sycophants”?

[This item was originally posted to The Media Drop]

A lot has been said in recent days about how the press has handled the declaration of Weapons of Mass Destruction “absolutely” being in Iraq, and that being the cause for allied troops to go in and depose Saddam Hussein – a lot of it has focused on an interesting occurrence, namely, Bill O’Reilly’s comments this past Monday on Good Morning America where he did give somewhat of an apology, as promised last year on March 18th, on the same Good Morning America program. While many would characterize O’Reilly as a tried and true conservative (which he is), he did come across as a poster-boy for what the Bush administration was saying. In reality, he’s just giving credit to the administration for their statements, taking them as truth and communicating as such and adding his own insights and opinion to straight journalism.

For some great coverage of the story as a whole, check out this article by Tom Regan at the Christian Science Monitor in today’s “Daily Update”. The article covers how a lot of the media outlets, especially television networks, bought 100% in to the words that were given to them by members of the Bush administration with regard to going into Iraq this past year and for some incidents dating back to attacking al Qaeda operations in 2001. At the same time, many foreign media outlets took the exact opposite direction, or were in some cases just generally distrustful of what governments were saying, creating a relationship that was probably more than uncomfortable for various network-to-network dealings.

[update: 2/12/04] The National Debate has a link to a story at the New York Observer that talks about the lack of Dr. Bob Arnot on NBC’s recent reporting from Iraq. Arnot claims a bias at the network, and voiced his opinion to NBC News’ boss, Neal Shapiro, in a detailed letter which the Observer obtained and posted portions of.

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