On Monday night, Daily Show host Jon Stewart mercilessly attacked former Vice President Dick Cheney’s defense of the CIA’s enhanced interrogation program after 9/11. During his opening segment, the Comedy Central host accused Cheney of loving “torture” and asked “what if, hypothetically, this treatment was perpetrated on someone who had been detained wrongly, surely that would soften Cheney’s Bronsonlike torture boner.”
On Sunday, NBC’s Meet the Press hosted former Vice President Dick Cheney to speak on the recent Democratic Senate Intelligence Committee report on the CIA’s use of enhanced interrogation tactics on suspected terrorists. While Cheney spoke out in defense of the program, moderator Chuck Todd asked his guest “when you say waterboarding is not torture, then why did we prosecute Japanese soldiers in World War II for waterboarding?”
Kristen Welker, NBC News White House Correspondent, served as fill-in host on MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Reports Thursday afternoon and took the opportunity to badger Congressman Peter King (R-N.Y.) over the Democratic Senate Intelligence Committee report on the CIA’s use of enhanced interrogation techniques on suspected terrorists. Speaking to her Republican guest, Welker asked “some of the enhanced techniques that the report found included extended waterboarding, sleep deprivation, rectal rehydration, slapping and stress positions. How is that not torture Congressman?”
A day after Rosie O’Donnell proclaimed that the CIA engaged in “horrific” and “illegal” “torture,” on Thursday morning the cast of ABC’s The View decided to revisit the controversial Democratic Senate report on the CIA’s use of enhanced interrogation techniques on suspected terrorists. Predictably, Rosie doubled-down on her claim that America “tortured” people but conservative co-host Nicolle Wallace eagerly slapped her down. The ABC host insisted that she has “never been more proud to defend the people who walk the line for this country and this city and the city in which I worked, the city where my mom and dad lived.”
9/11 truther Rosie O'Donnell on Wednesday lashed out against America's "horrific," "illegal" "torture." O'Donnell sparred with her fellow View co-host Nicolle Wallace over a new Senate report on the CIA and torture.
After Thursday's network evening newscasts ignored a report from the Government Accountability Office that the exchange of five terrorists from Guantanamo Bay for Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl was illegal, NBC's Today and ABC's Good Morning America remained silent on the Obama administration scandal on Friday. Only CBS This Morning made any mention of the violation of federal law, providing a mere 24-second news brief on the topic. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Meanwhile, both Today and GMA did find time to produce full reports on a contestant on VH1's Dating Naked reality show suing the cable network for showing her naked on the program.
MSNBC’s resident “boy genius” Ronan Farrow made a backhanded slap at our men and women in uniform by referring to the military commissions set up to try unlawful enemy combatants as “kangaroo courts.”
On Tuesday afternoon’s edition of Ronan Farrow Daily, the host was joined by Maryland Democratic Congressman Chris Van Hollen to discuss Ahmed Abu Khattala capture and where the alleged mastermind behind the deadly September 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi could possibly be tried. Van Hollen argued for having him tried in a civilian federal criminal court over a military tribunal. Farrow agreed with him because of the “perception” that our military courts have given the world.
Both Time and the Wall Street Journal have reported that Bowe Bergdahl, the soldier released by his Afghan captors in exchange for five hardened Gitmo terrorists — or, in the alternative universe of the Los Angeles Times, five guys aged 43 to 47 who "are pretty old now" — will not contact his parents (WSJ's headline says he "has declined to speak to his family").
That news broke several hours after Fox News's Juan Williams appeared on Chris Wallace's Fox News Sunday and compared Bowe Bergdahl to the biblical prodigal son. The analogy didn't even work at that point, as RedState poster Aaron Gardner explained this morning. Video of Williams's wacky whine follows the jump:
With the exchange of Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl for the release of five Taliban detainees held at Guantanamo Bay complete, ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos used the opportunity to promote the possibility of Gitmo closing its doors.
On Sunday, June 8, Byron Pitts, ABC’s Chief National Correspondent peddled the line that “700 men have come through Gitmo since the beginning of the war on terror when these pictures of shackled and hooded men shock the world. Some say past allegations of waterboarding and hunger strikes have turned this place into a terrorist recruiters dream.” [See video below.]
Los Angeles Times reporter Shashank Bengali clearly put a great deal of energy and time into trying to persuade readers on Thursday that the five Gitmo terrorists released in exchange for Bowe Bergdahl "may not live up to (that) description."
It only took a day for Bengali's work to be discredited. The person he seemed to believe would be among the least likely to become a threat — after all, he was supposedly just a "civilian official" — "pledged to return to fight Americans in Afghanistan." Geez, couldn't Noorullah Noori at least have allowed a decent interval before telling the truth? Don't you just hate it when one of the guys you're trying to whitewash almost immediately turns around and makes you look like a complete fool?
Brian Williams glossed over the V.A. scandal during his interview of President Obama on Friday's NBC Nightly News. Williams did devote time to the ongoing controversy surrounding the release of senior Taliban leaders in exchange for Bowe Bergdahl – specifically the White House failing to inform Congress 30 days before the Islamists were let go from Guantanamo Bay, as required by federal law.
However, the anchor didn't mention that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid revealed that he was informed of the trade for Bergdahl on May 27, 2014 – a day before it actually happened. Williams also forwarded the President's own misleading claim about his grandfather's World War II service: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
When it comes to being a good liberal soldier, MSNBC’s Chris Matthews doesn’t seem to have gotten the network’s message that the GOP is "swiftboating" Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl. Over the past week, MSNBC hosts have maintained that Bergdahl had been swiftboated on five different broadcasts and it seems as though Matthews is sick of the comparison.
Speaking with Chuck Todd, NBC’s Chief White House Correspondent, Political Director, and host of The Daily Rundown on MSNBC, on the Wednesday June 4, Hardball, Matthews slapped down the MSNBC “swiftboat” narrative: “Swift-boating is totally misused here. Swift-boating is when you make up stories...” [See video below.]