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By Ken Shepherd | July 23, 2014 | 9:20 PM EDT

MSNBC All In host Chris Hayes -- who once infamously felt "uncomfortable" calling American servicemen "heroes" -- complimented as "gutsy" one Yael Even Or, an Israeli reservist who explained in a Washington Post op-ed why she refuses to serve in Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip should she be called up for service.

The comment came at the beginning of his July 23 interview with Ms. Or live in MSNBC's New York City studios. Video follows the page break and you can listen to the MP3 here. You can read the relevant transcript below the page break. 

By Matthew Balan | July 22, 2014 | 4:34 PM EDT

Monday's CBS Evening News was the only Big Three morning or evening newscast to cover the conviction of Azamat Tazhayakov, who was found guilty of obstructing the investigation into the April 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Jurors also convicted Tazhayakov of taking part in a "conspiracy with his off-campus roommate to hide incriminating evidence in the days immediately after the attack," as reported by the Boston Globe on Monday.

Anchor Scott Pelley gave a 19-second news brief to the conviction of the former student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Matthew Balan | July 21, 2014 | 4:02 PM EDT

On Sunday's Media Buzz, Senator John McCain brushed off Jon Stewart's latest blast at him over the Iraq War. Host Howard Kurtz wondered, "Is Jon Stewart fair to Republicans?" McCain bluntly answered, "No, but it doesn't matter really. He's a comedian." When Kurtz brought up Stewart's "sizable following among young people," the Republican contended that "he's a very entertaining and funny guy, but...when he says things...that are absolutely wrong, he gets away with it."

Earlier in the interview, the Fox News Channel host raised the conservative critique about the liberal media's deferential treatment of President Obama. Kurtz wondered if that was less true since his second inauguration: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Brent Baker | July 18, 2014 | 12:45 AM EDT

Amazingly, Chris Matthews concluded Thursday’s Hardball by playing clips of how President Ronald Reagan reacted the Soviet shootdown of a Korean Air Lines 747 passenger jet in 1983 – even conceding, after a clip of Reagan charging the Soviets with terrorism and a “flagrant lie,” that “he was speaking for the American people.”

Matthews – probably inadvertently – illustrated how Reagan, unlike the current occupant of the White House, understood his role as leader of the free world under threat from evil forces.

By Matthew Balan | July 16, 2014 | 11:33 PM EDT

Anthony Mason spotlighted the death of comic book character Archie Andrews on Wednesday's CBS Evening News, and pointed out that "it all ends...when an adult Archie takes a bullet aimed by a stalker at a gay friend." Mason turned to the comics' publisher, Jon Goldwater, and wondered if he was "trying to make a political statement with this comic book" [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump].

Goldwater denied that he was doing so, even though he underlined that "gun violence is too prevalent in this country, and we should do everything we can to prevent it." However, just hours earlier on NPR's Morning Edition, he hinted that he was indeed making a political statement:

By Ken Shepherd | July 16, 2014 | 9:57 PM EDT

Hillary Clinton was positively compared to not one but two beloved Republican presidents -- Dwight D. Eisenhower and Ronald Reagan -- in a July 16 Hardball segment praising the former secretary of state's interview with Jon Stewart and thinking through how the former secretary of state should make her pitch to the American people in the time between now and November 2016.

Huffington Post Media Group director Howard Fineman invoked Ike first (listen to the MP3 audio here):

By Matthew Balan | July 16, 2014 | 9:42 PM EDT

Wednesday's CBS Evening News unsurprisingly spotlighted a recent study that asserted that turbulence will become more common due to climate change during a news brief about the injuries on an international flight that encountered such unsettled air. Anchor Scott Pelley played up how "one British study predicts that this kind of turbulence will increase significantly in the future because of climate change" [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump].

By contrast, Brian Williams used his brief on Wednesday's NBC Nightly News to remind his viewers of the safety recommendation flight attendants regularly cite in order to prevent such injuries:

By Ken Shepherd | July 15, 2014 | 9:03 PM EDT

As my colleagues have been documenting throughout the day, both NBC and MSNBC have had their share of biased segments against Israel on their Tuesday programs.

So it was rather refreshing to see Hardball host Chris Matthews defend the United States's staunchest -- and only truly democratic -- Middle Eastern ally in his closing "Let Me Finish" commentary for the July 15 program. You can read the transcript below the page break (MP3 audio here, video follows page break; emphasis mine):

By Ken Shepherd | July 14, 2014 | 9:45 PM EDT

Although more subdued compared to his June 18 anti-Dick Cheney diatribe, MSNBC's Chris Matthews returned on his Monday, July 14 program once again to his unhealthy, creepy obsession with the former vice president. The relevant news hook was what Matthews derided as a "Cheney family offensive," referring to a Politico Playbook lunch event held earlier in the day in Washington, D.C., featuring Cheney, wife Lynne, and daughter Liz.

"Cheney, who was the number one force pushing was on the American people, said he's sticking to his tragic position of 2003," Matthews groused before playing a clip of Cheney saying he "believed it in then" and "looking back on it now, it was the right thing to do." "What did anyone expect, is what I have to say," Matthews huffed, adding, "Is it news that Dick Cheney [chay-nee] is Dick Cheney [chee-nee]?"

By Matthew Balan | July 14, 2014 | 4:02 PM EDT

Fredricka Whitfield put on the kid gloves for Marion Barry on Sunday's CNN Newsroom, and acclaimed the former D.C. mayor as a "visionary." Whitfield skirted mentioning every single controversy Barry has been involved in through his long career save one – his "infamous drug bust in 1990." She also spotlighted the Democrat's conspiracy theory that the FBI set up the sting to take him down for helping the poor: "You draw that correlation that all of those things that you did for the underserved community...and the design of this drug bust."

The anchor deferentially let Barry take credit for everything supposedly going well with the city of Washington, D.C., but failed to bring up the fact that the District became the "murder capital" of the U.S. during his tenure as mayor. Whitfield set the tone with her beyond softball first question to the current city councilman: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]

By Brent Baker | July 12, 2014 | 1:55 PM EDT

For a few brief seconds on Friday night, Bill Maher made sense. Maher, who could be described as a “useless Obama hack” – after all, he’s a big donor to Obama and a constant defender of him who chalks up any and all criticism of Obama to racism – condemned liberals, on one subject at least, as “useless Obama hacks without a shred of intellectual honesty.”

What prompted this brief trip into reality? A report on how the NSA intercepted and stored “useless” online conversations that were “intimate” and “voyeuristic.” Maher asserted: “I just want to say, if this was happening under Bush, liberals would be apoplectic.”

By Matthew Balan | July 11, 2014 | 11:36 PM EDT

On Friday's Hardball, Chris Matthews and Howard Dean slammed the supposedly "lunatic" Republican Party for opposing President Obama's $3.7 billion request to deal with the ongoing crisis at the U.S-Mexico border. Dean likened the political stalemate over this issue and in general in Washington to McCarthyism in the 1950s: "It reminds me of the 'who lost China' debate...where one side is frothing at the mouth and finding communists under every bed; and the other side – including some reasonable Republicans...actually trying to run the country."

Matthews endorsed the former Vermont governor's take, and targeted fiscal conservatives/the Tea Party as somehow akin to Mao's Red Guards: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]