Syria

By Curtis Houck | October 1, 2014 | 9:41 PM EDT

On Wednesday night, the major broadcast networks failed to report on news that an internal memo was sent to members of the intelligence community by Director of National Intelligence (DNI) James Clapper praising their efforts on identifying the rise of ISIS after President Barack Obama blamed them for not doing so in an interview on Sunday’s 60 Minutes.

The memo was able to be obtained by Fox News and its chief intelligence correspondent, Catherine Herridge and it detailed how government intelligence has, for two years, “monitored, assessed and called attention to the expansion of ISIS.” 

By Jeffrey Meyer | October 1, 2014 | 10:07 AM EDT

Governor Chris Christie (R-N.J.) sat down with Gayle King for an interview that aired on Wednesday’s CBS This Morning and was met with a barrage of questions over his handling of the “Bridgegate” scandal of 2013. While King accused the New Jersey Governor of blaming others for “Bridgegate,” her colleague Steve Kroft lobbed numerous softball at President Obama during their interview on Sunday’s 60 Minutes and even allowed him to blame the intelligence community for his administration failing to deal with the ISIS threat sooner. 

By Tom Blumer | September 30, 2014 | 10:44 PM EDT

Bill O'Reilly's opening talking points on his show tonight went after President Obama's claim that the intelligence community underestimated and did not adequately communicate the dangers of ISIS/ISIL in Iraq and Syria with both barrels.

As documented in several NewsBusters posts in the 48-plus hours since Obama's Sunday night "60 Minutes" interview, O'Reilly's no-holds-barred analysis assessment, as seen in the video which follows the jump, is a stark contrast to what has been seen on other broadcast networks:

By Matthew Balan | September 30, 2014 | 3:58 PM EDT

On Monday's Fox News's Hannity, Islamist cleric Anjem Choudary accused the Western media and Blackwater of framing ISIS for the atrocities that the terrorist group has freely admitted to. When host Sean Hannity raised the beheading of British aid worker David Haines, Choudary contended that "the information that we received...is very biased....I don't take my news from Fox News or the BBC. If you look at the people on the ground, I think you'll find that they have a completely different story. The Christians and Jews are living quite peacefully, in fact, in the Islamic State."

By Tom Blumer | September 30, 2014 | 2:37 PM EDT

Steve Kroft's interview of Barack Obama was the focus of this past Sunday's episode of "60 Minutes" on CBS. It has become noteworthy primarily because of Obama's statement that U.S. intelligence agencies "underestimated what had been taking place in Syria." As several previous NewsBusters posts have shown (examples here, here, here, and here), the press is working mightily to minimize how the intelligence community and the Pentagon are pushing back, hotly disputing the President's assertion.

Another noteworthy development is that the network's audience for the Obama interview was down 69 percent in the 18-49 demographic from the show's previous episode. The vast majority of press reports noting the ratings slide, as compiled by Kristinn Taylor over at Gateway Pundit, are not mentioning that it was Obama's show.

By Tom Blumer | September 29, 2014 | 11:45 PM EDT

ABC's Jonathan Karl is on a tear — and his editorial bosses at ABC seem determined to ignore him.

As Scott Whitlock at NewsBusters noted earlier today, Karl on Friday "grilled White House press secretary Josh Earnest ... about claims that al Qaeda had been 'decimated,'" mainly because it hasn't been. Instead, it seems like there are at least ten times as many versions. The network televised none of the exchange. Tonight, NB's Curtis Houck wrote that ABC was among the networks which ignored how "several sources in the intelligence community disputed President Obama’s comments" about how they had supposedly underestimated the ISIS/ISIL threat. It turns out that ABC was silent even though Karl wrote a scathing column this afternoon which named specific names (bolds are mine):

By Curtis Houck | September 29, 2014 | 9:44 PM EDT

Throughout the day on Monday, several sources in the intelligence community disputed President Obama’s comments in an interview with CBS’s 60 Minutes that aired on Sunday night that the intelligence community and Director of National Intelligence Jim Clapper are to blame for not recognizing the threat posed by ISIS.

On the Monday evening newscasts of the major broadcast networks, ABC World News Tonight with David Muir chose to ignore the story all together while the CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley simply re-aired Obama’s comments from 60 Minutes the night prior without acknowledging the criticisms since the interview aired. NBC Nightly News offered a stark contrast as it aired a two-and-a-half-minute segment that included not only Obama’s comments, but congressional testimony from intelligence officials over the past year warning of ISIS and reports from NBC News chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel going back to January that both cited the falling apart of the Iraqi army in being able to hold territory and losses in territory to terrorists that U.S. troops had secured during the Iraq war.

By Jack Coleman | September 27, 2014 | 9:20 PM EDT

Once again, Rush Limbaugh, aka America's Anchorman, has shown himself invaluable in cutting through the perpetual fog of dissembling that wafts from the White House.

Limbaugh responded to the Obama administration's disclosure of yet another roving band of rabid militants that threatens the West with his characteristic insight and withering sarcasm.

By Matthew Balan | September 26, 2014 | 5:57 PM EDT

MSNBC host Al Sharpton will be the keynote speaker at the Council on American-Islamic Relations's (CAIR) 20th anniversary banquet on Saturday. Sharpton, who is President Obama's "go-to man on race," and who claims to be helping the White House pick outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder's successor, will be a guest of honor of the group, which was listed as a co-conspirator in a criminal case against an Islamic charity that raised millions for Hamas.

By Jeffrey Meyer | September 25, 2014 | 9:56 AM EDT

Leave it to MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough to eagerly defend President Obama following his speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday. Appearing on Thursday’s Morning Joe, Scarborough insisted that on foreign policy Obama’s "been criticized from a lot of, you could say conservative circles, mainly neo-con circles for not doing enough and going into Syria a year or two ago. But he certainly has followed public opinion, hasn't he? In that respect, conservative with a small c?”

By Tom Blumer | September 24, 2014 | 9:43 PM EDT

The Politico's Josh Gerstein wants readers not to have a problem with President Barack Obama singing the praises of American exceptionalism when in front of U.S. audiences but deep-sixing it when speaking at the United Nations. Though Obama has almost always avoided actually using the E-word, he has recenlly taken to speaking of this nation's "unique" abilities and capabilities, and for some time has described the U.S. as "the one indispensable nation."

But Gerstein, in his column today, indicated that it's okay that "Obama watered down his noble-America rhetoric" at the U.N. today. Oh, and in the Politico reporter's fantasy world, Obama's back-and-forth foreign policy postures — it's hardly accurate to call them genuine "positions" — are really no different than what we saw under George W. Bush. Excerpts follow the jump (bolds and numbered tags are mine):

By Curtis Houck | September 24, 2014 | 8:59 PM EDT

During his speech to the United Nations (U.N.) General Assembly on Wednesday, President Barack Obama made a striking, unusual and ridiculous comparison between the reign of terror taking place in the Middle East at the hands of the brutal Islamic terrorist group ISIS and the unrest that took place in Ferguson, Missouri last month after the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

As far as the any of the major broadcast networks bringing up this absurd comparison on their evening newcasts, neither ABC, CBS, or NBC gave that portion of the President’s speech any attention or allowed it to see the light of day.