Appearing on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show on Monday, MSNBC host Joy Reid repeatedly refused to characterize either Russian president Vladimir Putin or Syrian president Bashar al-Assad as “evil.” During a contentious debate over Russia’s invasion of eastern Ukraine, Hewitt asked his guest point-blank, “Do you agree that what Russia is doing is evil?” [Video embedded below the break.]
Kudos to the Daily Beast for reporting this story. Don't hold your breath for the network news outlets to pick up on it and doggedly pursue it.
In an exclusive published at the website today, Josh Rogin and Noah Shachtmanexplain how there's credible evidence that regime of Syrian dictator Basharal-Assad may have used chemical weapons in January 2014, something that U.S. intelligence officials are denying but which eyewitnesses on the ground insist occurred (excerpt follows; emphasis mine):
What was the best way for NBC to begin that network's coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia? Have sports anchor Bob Costas host a brief profile on Vladmir Putin in which the Russian president is hailed as a global statesman superior to U.S. president Barack Obama. '
Expecting Syria to live up to an agreement between Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov for the cataloging, inspection, removal and eventual destruction or sequester of chemical weapons is a subtle seduction.
Why would a dictator like Bashar al-Assad relinquish his most potent weapon in the midst of a civil war? President Obama and his sycophants claim it was the threat of military action against Syria that focused Assad's mind. That hardly seems credible after Kerry's promise that any U.S. missile strike would be "unbelievably small."
In a 66-paragraph masterpiece, Journal reporters Adam Entous, Janet Hook, and Carol Lee gave a behind-the-scenes look of how, "Through mixed messages, miscalculations, and an 11th-hour break, the U.S. stumbled into an international crisis and then stumbled out of it." Among other things disclosed, "The same day [Secretary of State John] Kerry made his fateful remark" that Syria could simply give up its weapons to the international community, "the State Department sent Congress a memo detailing: 'Russian Obstruction of Actions on Syria.'" It really is a great exploration of the Keystone Kops nature of the Obama team's bungling of Syrian foreign policy. Here's a taste (emphasis mine):
CNN’s Candy Crowley did her best Hillary Clinton Sunday.
During a State of the Union discussion about the American-Russian agreement concerning Syria, Crowley asked a skeptical Congressman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), "Who cares" that "Russia got the diplomatic edge?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Syndicated columnist Pat Buchanan had a rather shocking observation about Russian President Vladimir Putin’s comments about American exceptionalism in his New York Times op-ed last week.
Appearing on PBS’s McLaughlin Group Friday, Buchanan said, “He’s not only appealing to the people of the world. He’s appealing to that half of the United States to whom Barack Obama himself was appealing.”
On Inside Washington Friday, PBS’s Mark Shields and NPR’s Nina Totenberg predictably echoed the Administration’s claims that its threats of force in Syria led Russian President Vladimir Putin to broker a chemical weapons deal.
Fortunately for viewers, syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer was present to scold his fellow panelists for “spinning from the White House” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Bill Maher came back from his summer vacation predictably attacking conservatives while defending Barack Obama.
During his New Rules segment, the HBO Real Time host said with pictures of Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on screen, “Scientists must study the correlation between not having a chin and being an a—hole” (video follows with commentary):
While the liberal media predictably focus on the domestic political ramifications for President Obama as regards his strange and ever-evolving policy on Syria, the real story worth reporting is how Obama may actually be strengthening Bashar Assad's hand, even making him "a national hero" who can not only survive but thrive as a result.
In her September 12 front-page story "Syrian Rebels Hurt By Delay," The Wall Street Journal's Nour Malas has an excellent story to that effect. Filing from Istanbul, she quotes Mohammmed al-Daher, "a commander in the rebels' Western backed Free Syria Army" as lamenting that he "wouldn't be surprised if the end result of these negotiations is that [Assad] remains as president and beyond that, turns into a national hero who saved his country." Malas continued (emphasis mine):
Roughly ten days ago, CNN's Fareed Zakaria said, "[T]he administration's handling of Syria over the last year has been a case study in how not to do foreign policy."
On Wednesday, Zakaria wrote a piece for the Washington Post in which he conceded, "Obama’s proposals are also not likely to reduce the humanitarian crisis" in Syria, but yet in his view, the new plan involving Russia "is a significant success."
While many in the media are actually crediting Barack Obama for Russian President Vladimir Putin's proposed Syrian chemical weapons "solution," TIME magazine's Joe Klein isn't one of them.
Far from it, Klein penned a scathing rebuke of Obama's handling of Syria Wednesday calling it "one of the more stunning and inexplicable displays of presidential incompetence that I’ve ever witnessed...The consequences of Obama’s amateur display ripple out across the world."
The NBC Tonight Show host spent much of his opening monologue lampooning President Obama beginning with, “It's still a little warm, but you can tell fall is coming...The leaves are changing faster than the White House position on Syria” (video and transcript follow):
Liberal media members are clearly overjoyed that there’s – at least for the time being – not going to be a vote in Congress concerning a military strike on Syria.
On MSNBC’s Morning Joe Wednesday, NPR’s Cokie Roberts outlined the left's doomsday scenario saying, “If he had lost this vote, which he was clearly about to do, it would have been everything: immigration would have been down the tubes, you know, ObamaCare defunded, debt ceiling a mess, all of it” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The folks at Second City on Monday released an absolutely hysterical video depicting the absurdity of mindless Obama automatons supporting war just because the man they voted for says it’s a good idea.
In it, four classic Obamabots of varied backgrounds representing the organization “Americans for Whatever Barack Obama Wants, Did You Know He’s Friends With Jay-Z?” try to raise $1.6 trillion to fund World War III (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
PBS's Tavis Smiley had some harsh words Sunday for President Obama's planned attack on Syria.
During his Smiley and West radio program, Tavis said, "It’s one thing to honor Martin with our words in Washington one day, and then 48 hours later start making plans to dishonor him with our deeds in Syria...He ought to just take that bust out of the Oval Office if he’s going to dishonor Martin in this way" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer had some harsh words for the apparent peace proposal offered by Russian President Vladimir Putin involving Syria turning over its chemical weapons.
Appearing on Fox News's Special Report Monday, Krauthammer said, “The chances of these weapons being eliminated from Syria are less than of the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series this year, and they are now mathematically eliminated.”
On Monday's CBS This Morning, Charlie Rose cited how Hillary Clinton once referred to Bashar al-Assad as a "reformer", but didn't use the former secretary of state's name in his question to the Syrian despot. When al-Assad asked to specify who had called him a "reformer, " Rose vaguely replied, "People who write about you; people who talk about you; people who analyze Syria and your regime." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
The veteran PBS host continued, "Now, they say – their words – a 'butcher' – comparisons to the worst dictators ever to walk on the face of the earth...Everything they could say bad about a dictator, they're now saying about you." The Middle Eastern dictator answered by bizarrely likening himself to a doctor:
NBC chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd on Sunday said there are more Democrats coming to a "rational and principled" decision in opposing an attack on Syria compared to Republicans who in his view are just as likely to be basing their opinion strictly on politics.
Such was said on NBC's Meet the Press (video follows with transcript and commentary):