Military

By Matthew Philbin | July 31, 2013 | 4:26 PM EDT

Bradley Manning must be terribly lonely. After all, how many gay men have made news the last few years without being celebrated in the media for their gayness? And a gay man who also “struggles with issues of gender identity” can pretty much write his own contract with MSNBC.

But the media, and the broadcast networks especially, are oddly reticent about the sexual orientation and confusion of Manning, the army private convicted of the most extensive military intelligence security breach in U.S. history.

By Tom Blumer | July 29, 2013 | 11:04 PM EDT

It has been almost 48 hours since the New York Post's Melissa Klein first reported that "This iconic picture of firefighters raising the stars and stripes in the rubble of Ground Zero was nearly excluded from the 9/11 Memorial Museum," because "the museum’s creative director ... considered the Tom Franklin photograph too kitschy and "rah-rah America."

A Google News search on "Ground Zero New York" (not in quotes, past seven days, showing duplicates) returns only 24 relevant items. None are from establishment press outlets. The same search at the Associated Press's national web site also returns nothing relevant. Excerpts from Klein's Post report, as well as Publishers Weekly's review of the upcoming book, are after the jump.

By Kyle Drennen | July 23, 2013 | 11:09 AM EDT

On Tuesday's NBC Today, during a report on a attack against Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison that freed hundreds of Al Qaeda terrorists, chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel couldn't resist slamming the U.S. for past abuses at the facility: "Abu Ghraib prison, notorious for American abuses and humiliations that [turned] an untold number against the United States, remains an open wound." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Engel began the segment by dismissing the Iraq war as a futile effort: "Iraq is now back in a civil war U.S. officials tell NBC News. The hard-fought U.S. surge there, the benefits of an American war to stop Iraq's civil war, are being wiped out. In car bombs, ambushes and gun fights, more than 250 killed in ten days."

By Mark Finkelstein | July 5, 2013 | 8:18 AM EDT

This Fourth of July weekend is turning into an unforseen laff-fest.  Yesterday we had NBC featuring a photo of President Obama making what he might have thought was an assertive hand gesture while discussing the situation in Egypt with his aides.

Today treats us to historian Douglas Brinkley, on Morning Joe, claiming that when it comes to foreign policy, President Obama reminds him of, yes, Supreme-Allied-Commander-turned-President Dwight D. Eisenhower.  View the chuckle-worthy video after the jump.

By Brent Bozell | July 2, 2013 | 8:00 AM EDT

Two years ago, a humor website called The Washington Fancy presented the headline “Obama Cancels July 4th Because of Budget Cuts.” The fake article in the middle of debt-ceiling battles insisted “President Obama sees the cancellation of the holiday as due punishment for Congress’s recent behavior.”

It continued: “Canceling the July 4th holiday will save states and cities billions of dollars in money that would have normally been spent on Chinese fireworks and large brass bands.” It’s not funny anymore. Now, with what AP falsely calls the “congressionally mandated” sequester cuts, military bases have done just that. They have cancelled Fourth of July events.

By Katie Yoder | July 1, 2013 | 3:37 PM EDT

“America will never be destroyed from the outside,” President Abraham Lincoln once argued, explaining, “if we falter and lose our freedoms it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” Or rather, according to Hollywood’s latest masterpiece, “White House Down,” America’s suicide will arise from racist right-wing sociopaths, hateful bloggers, NSA hackers, and weapon-manufacturing companies – with ABC News reporting live. 

Once again, Hollywood can’t bring itself to acknowledge America’s real enemies – the ones who actually kill American soldiers, diplomats and civilians. Instead, it turns fellow citizens with a differing view into bloody-minded monsters. In Whit House Down,” Columbia Picture’s new film directed by Roland Emmerich and written by James Vanderbilt, pro-military citizens and right-wingers – the destroyers of the peace – are the culprits.

By Brent Bozell | June 25, 2013 | 5:33 PM EDT

A federal judge has finally selected a trial date for accused Fort Hood mass-murderer Nidal Malik Hasan – July 9. We’ll see if it actually happens. If you’ve forgotten that mass shooting, then the media had scored a point for President Obama. The Pentagon dismissed the terrorist attack as “workplace violence,” the Obama media nodded in agreement and the massacre vanished from public memory.

Hasan went on his deadly rampage, killing 13 and wounding another 32, on November 5, 2009. By the beginning of 2010, the networks were already in “sleep” mode. On the one-year anniversary, only NBC filed a story (that completely avoided the word “Obama”), while CBS had a single anchor brief. Amazingly, ABC offered nothing.

By Tom Blumer | June 22, 2013 | 10:08 AM EDT

Netroots Nation, the leftist annual convention currently in progress in San Jose (next year it's in Detroit; can't wait), bills itself as a "connector of awesome progressive activists."

Based on Emily Schultheis's Saturday morning report at the Politico on the viewpoints of those in attendance, the gathering's slogan should really be, "Blame it on Bush and Boehner." The Politico reporter also professes surprise that these largely angry leftists aren't angry at President Barack Obama, as if anyone would have really expected that (bolds are mine):

By Andrew Lautz | June 18, 2013 | 5:15 PM EDT

If you need any further proof that the Lean Forward network is all in for the Democratic Party, look no further than the weekend program Disrupt. The newly-minted show is hosted by Karen Finney, frequent MSNBC contributor and former Director of Communications for the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

Finney decided to rewrite history on Sunday, suggesting to guest Heather Hurlburt that NSA surveillance is acceptable under the Obama administration, but was unacceptable under the Bush administration, because fighting a “global war on terror with these unseen foes” is the “new normal.”

By Nathan Roush | June 11, 2013 | 12:55 PM EDT

Openly gay CNN anchor Anderson Cooper devoted a full quarter of his Thursday, June 6 program to the story of a transgender ex-Navy SEAL who laments that he could not serve in the military now as a man who identifies as a woman. [Listen to the audio here]

Cooper chronicled the adult life of Christopher Beck, who now goes by Kristin, who first enlisted in the Navy in 1990 and would eventually achieve his goal of serving as a member of the Navy SEALs. However, he claimed that he always had an inner struggle with his gender identity. He was born a man, but identified himself as a woman.  He also claims to have signed up for the SEALs to try to suppress or “cure” his feminine desires but never could.

By Tom Blumer | June 10, 2013 | 11:46 PM EDT

In a story which I can attest is accurate, Gina Loudon at WND.com, formerly WorldNetDaily, reports that the Air Force's 624th Operations Center is warning airmen not to look at the news.

That's not exactly what they're saying, but they might as well be. What the "Notice to Airmen" says is that "Users are not to use AF NIPRNET systems to access the Verizon phone records collection and other related news stories because the action could constitute a Classified Message Incident." It's currently pretty hard to go to a news site without seeing a blurb on a "related story," given how many "related stories" there are which go way beyond Verizon to nine tech companies, 50 other companies, Edward Snowden, White House, congressional and bureaucrats' responses, etc. The Air Force's claim that reading a news story or even looking at documents which have been made public is a "Classified Message Incident" is pretty shaky, based on the definition provided in a two-year old memo I located. That definition, and a grab of the censorious memo, follow the jump.

By Mark Finkelstein | June 10, 2013 | 8:57 AM EDT

Things got feisty on Morning Joe today, as Glenn Greenwald of the Guardian clashed with Mika Brzezinski over the leak of the NSA phone surveillance program by Greenwald's informant, Edward Snowden. H/t NB reader Jeff M.

When Brzezinski alleged that wiretapping or the review by the NSA of emails required an additional judicial review and warrant, Greenwald accused Mika of using "White House talking points" that were "completely misleading and false."  Mika denied it. Greenwald upped the animosity by telling Mika she would have known better if she had paid even "remote attention" to the issues over the last ten years. View the video after the jump.