NBC and ABC Morning Shows: Forget G7 Foreign Policy, Look at This Photo Meme!

Despite President Obama making the stunning admission at the G7 Summit on Monday that the U.S. still lacks a “complete strategy” to combat ISIS, NBC’s Today and ABC’s Good Morning America ignored the news on Tuesday. Instead, both network morning shows promoted a social media meme about a photo of Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

On Today, news reader Natalie Morales actually began by brushing aside the substance of the summit: “And the crisis in Ukraine, climate change, increasing trade, all important topics, of course, covered at the G7 Summit in Germany. However, it is this photo taken of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Obama that’s getting all the buzz.”

Morales explained: “It’s an animated Merkel appearing ready to burst into song while a relaxed President Obama sits there on the bench taking in the majestic views of the Bavarian Alps. Many saying the scene very much reminiscent of that classic, of course, Julie Andrews, The Sound of Music...”

On GMA, news reader Amy Robach similarly reported: “The image of President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel deep in conversation at their summit high in the Alps. A background remarkably like the peaks behind Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music....And you know what's going to happen. Yep, it spawned countless memes.”

Only CBS This Morning made any mention of Obama’s ISIS remarks. In a 27-second news brief, co-host Charlie Rose noted:

President Obama says the fight against ISIS still lacks a “complete strategy.” He told reporters at Monday's G7 meeting in Germany the United States needs a full plan for training Iraqi forces. American war planes have lead air strikes against ISIS for ten months but ISIS forces have made significant gains in recent weeks. They captured the key Iraqi city of Ramadi last month. The President says Americans must speed up the training of Iraqi troops.

On Monday night, CBS Evening News and ABC’s World News Tonight did provide critical coverage of the President’s ISIS comments. Filling in as anchor of Evening News, Rose described “a startling admission about the war against ISIS.” On World News, anchor David Muir said the statement “raise[d] eyebrows.”

In contrast, NBC Nightly News spun for Obama, with White House correspondent Chris Jansing declaring: “The President ordering up a new plan from the Pentagon to accelerate training and equipping and training Iraqi forces. A shift in U.S. strategy that the President admits is still a work in progress.”

Here are transcripts of the June 9 segments on Today and GMA:

Today
7:15 AM ET

NATALIE MORALES: And the crisis in Ukraine, climate change, increasing trade, all important topics, of course, covered at the G7 Summit in Germany. However, it is this photo taken of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Obama that’s getting all the buzz. Take a look.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: The Hills Are Alive...; Picture of Angela Merkel Steals Show at G7 Summit]

[Singing] The hills are alive....

Right? It’s an animated Merkel appearing ready to burst into song while a relaxed President Obama sits there on the bench taking in the majestic views of the Bavarian Alps. Many saying the scene very much reminiscent of that classic, of course, Julie Andrews, The Sound of Music, and the opening number. Gotta love that.

SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: Only thing missing was the twirl.

MORALES: Yeah, exactly.

AL ROKER: I thought she was just describing their last fishing trip.

GUTHRIE: Nat, thank you.


Good Morning America
8:04 AM ET

AMY ROBACH: And this morning, picture this. The image of President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel deep in conversation at their summit high in the Alps. A background remarkably like the peaks behind Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music. There it is.

And you know what's going to happen. Yep, it spawned countless memes. This one seems to be the most popular, showing the President relaxing in the tub there while Merkel talks to him. But you know those crazy internet kids, they just have so much fun with these pictures, don't they?

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: He does seem pretty chill in there.

ROBACH: Yeah, he does. No official comment from Merkel or Obama.

ROBIN ROBERTS: No?

ROBACH: No.

ROBERTS: Shocking.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Okay, Amy, thanks very much.

NB Daily Foreign Policy Bias by Omission War on Terrorism Liberals & Democrats ABC Good Morning America CBS CBS This Morning NBC Today Video Natalie Morales Amy Robach Charlie Rose Barack Obama Angela Merkel

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