Veteran Journalist Attacks Fox News for Doggedly Covering Benghazi Controversy

It’s commonplace for a news organization to be attacked for failing to cover certain major news events.  On the other hand, it is rare for a news outlet to be attacked for doing its job and reporting the news. 

According to Pulitzer Prize winning reporter Thomas Ricks, Fox News’ extensive reporting on the terrorist attack on our consulate in Benghazi is not only a waste of time but an example of how Fox is, “the wing of the Republican Party.”  Appearing on Monday’s Happening Now, Ricks openly called out Fox News for its coverage of what he dismissed as merely a “small firefight.”  [See video below break.  MP3 audio here.] 

The brief segment started off on the wrong foot immediately with Ricks’ first comments being a swipe at Fox News where he claimed, “I think that Benghazi generally was hyped by this network especially.” 

Co-host Jon Scott did his best to challenge Ricks assertions by asking him, “when you have four people dead including the first U.S. ambassador in more than 30 years, how do you call that hype?”  When Ricks failed to answer Scott’s question and instead repeated his ridiculous assertions, Scott cut the interview short. 

Given that the liberal media has failed to adequately report on the terrorist attack on our Libyan embassy one would expect a well-respected journalist like Thomas Ricks to praise Fox for their coverage.  Unfortunately, Ricks decides to not only smear Fox but to classify the terrorist attack as merely a “small firefight” showing the unwillingness of most journalists to objectively cover a major foreign policy failure of the Obama administration. 

 

See relevant transcript below. 


Fox News

Happening Now

November 26, 2012

11:16 a.m. EDT

JON SCOTT: Right now pressure mounting on the Obama Administration over its response to the deadly attack on our consulate in Benghazi. As Catherine Herridge reported just minutes ago. Several top GOP lawmakers are backing off their criticism of U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice.  Instead focusing on the White House.  Two Senators even expressing concerns about a possible white house cover-up. Let's talk about it with Tom Ricks, he is author of The Generals. He has spent decades covering our military. He joins us now. Senator John McCain has said in the past that he would block any attempt to nominate Susan Rice to become, U.N., I'm sorry, Secretary of State. She is currently the U.N. Ambassador. He seems to be backing away from that. What do you make of it?

TOM RICKS: I think that Benghazi generally was hyped by this network especially.  And now that the campaign is over I think he is backing off a little bit.   They’re not going to stop Susan Rice from being Secretary of State.

SCOTT: When you have four people dead including the first U.S. Ambassador in more than 30 years, how do you call that hype.

RICKS: How many security contractors died in Iraq? Do you know?

SCOTT: I don't.

RICKS: No, nobody does because nobody cared. We know that several hundred died but there was never an official count done of security contractors dead in Iraq.  So when I see this focus on what was essentially a small firefight I think number one, I’ve covered a lot of firefights.  It’s impossible to figure out what happens in them sometimes.  And second, I think that the emphasis on Benghazi has been extremely political partly because fox was operating as the wing of Republican Party.

SCOTT: Alright, Tom ricks, thanks very much for joining us today.

RICKS: You're welcome.

Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer is a News Analyst at the Media Research Center.