Al Qaeda: Fox News Unfair to Us

Ann Coulter is fond of pointing out how, attitudinally, Fox News is different from the rest of the American media. Sure, the non-Fox media are dominated by people who lean leftward, but beyond that, how they approach the news that is beyond the daily partisan talking points is also fundamentally different from what moderates or conservatives would do.

This aspect of liberal bias is probably hardest for liberal journalists to detect because it requires a degree of perspective that most lack. Outside observers can see it and have no problem pointing it out. What's interesting is that even members of Al Qaeda can see that Fox is different from the rest of the American press. That is not a good thing for the Non-Fox Media, however.

Among various media outlets and personalities, fired MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann is singled out for praise in an internal Al Qaeda memo released to the public by U.S. intelligence agencies.

The endorsement came from Adam Gadahn, the American-born spokesman for the al Qaeda terror network.

In a letter outlining al Qaeda's media strategy ahead of the tenth anniversary of 9/11, the terror group's top spokesman expressed disdain for Fox News, and laments that Olbermann's departure from MSNBC may make the little-watched network a less friendly conduit for al Qaeda propaganda.

"From the professional point of view, they are all on one level—except [Fox News] channel which falls into the abyss as you know, and lacks neutrality too," Gadahn wrote in the January 2011 letter, which was among 6,,000 pages of documents recovered during the raid that killed Osama bin Laden and were released to the public yesterday by the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.

Gadahn's favorite is ABC News - because it seems to be the best route to get al Qaeda's statements published: "ABC channel is all right; actually it could be one of the best channels, as far as we are concerned. It is interested in al-Qa'ida issues, particularly the journalist Brian Ross, who is specialized in terrorism. The channel is still proud for its interview with the Shaykh. It also broadcasted excerpts from a speech of mine on the fourth anniversary, it also published most of that text on its site on the internet."

While happy with ABC, Gadahn writes that Al Jazeera and the Jihadi forums on the Internet are "not useful."

Gadahn writes that CNN "seems to be in cooperation with the government more than the others," but expresses less certainty about MSNBC, writing that he no longer considered it to be "neutral" (which, to him, means an easy conduit for al Qaeda propaganda) because "it has lately fired Keith Olberman and Octavia Nasser the Lebanese."

Gadahn is blunt about FOX News - clearly viewing it as the media conduit least helpful to spreading al Qaeda's message.

"As for Fox News," he wrote, "let her die in her anger."

You really have to feel for Olbermann. On the one hand, he's held in higher esteem as a journalist than FOX News. On the other hand, the endorsement comes from the spokesman for a collection of people who truly are among the Worst Persons in the World.

Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield, creator of NewsBusters and president of Dialog New Media, an internet marketing and design firm, left NewsBusters at the end of 2013