The New York Times ran a hit piece on former CBS journalist Lara Logan by Jeremy Peters, who is the paper’s go-to reporter for criticism of conservative media figures: “Former Star At CBS News Follows Path To Far Right.”
After introducing Logan as someone who had “reached the heights of American journalism….as the chief foreign affairs correspondent for CBS News,” he lamented “today Ms. Logan cuts a far different figure in American media. Instead of on national news broadcasts, she can be found as a guest on right-wing podcasts or speaking at a rally for fringe causes, promoting falsehoods about deaths from Covid vaccines and conspiracy theories about voter fraud.”
Peters characterized her supposed decline as “one of the most puzzling in the modern history of television news.” But more interesting than what Peters had to say about Logan was his assumptions about what a mainstream journalist is allowed to believe.
More than half a dozen journalists and executives who worked with Ms. Logan at “60 Minutes,” most of whom spoke anonymously to discuss private interactions with her, said she sometimes revealed political leanings that made them question whether she could objectively cover the Obama administration’s military and foreign policy moves. She appeared increasingly conservative in her politics over the years, they said, and more outspoken about her suspicions of the White House’s motives and war strategy.
Wasn’t it a requirement for any reputable journalist to be suspicious of the “White House’s motives and war strategy” when George W. Bush was president and the Iraq War was raging? Is doubting presidential motives only a problem when the president is a Democrat?
It’s also now bad to agree with a Republican senator on some things, though the Times regularly fills up its paper with quotes from Democratic politicians clearly speaking for the reporters themselves.
Some said her opinions started to dovetail with the views of Obama critics she relied on as sources then who have since become close allies of former President Donald J. Trump, including Lindsey Graham, the hawkish Republican senator from South Carolina….
Still, Ms. Logan’s turn has disappointed many who considered her bright and fearless and admired her for returning again and again to Iraq and Afghanistan despite nearly losing her life in 2003, when an American military vehicle she was in was hit by Taliban fire….
Peters noted Logan comparing Dr. Anthony Fauci to Nazi doctor Josef Mengele, which got Logan canned from Fox Nation. If we can agree that contemporary Hitler comparisons are bad, perhaps the media (including Times reporters) will stop comparing Republicans to Hitler or Nazis.
Even Logan’s previous journalistic heroics were seen from a hostile new angle.
Several who worked alongside her said her fearlessness in war zones was double-edged -- it produced some good television but also sometimes made them question her judgment. On occasion, they said, she led her producers and crew into situations that they thought were not worth the risk...
After covering Logan’s sexual assault while covering a protest in Cairo’s Tahrir Square in 2011, Peters seemed to link Logan’s supposed radicalization to the trauma.
The next year, Ms. Logan gave a speech that would presage her downfall at CBS. The American consulate in Benghazi, Libya, had just been attacked, killing four Americans and igniting a firestorm among Republicans who accused Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton, the secretary of state at the time, of underestimating the threat terrorists posed to Americans.
Sounding more like an advocate for the military than a reporter, Ms. Logan told her audience in Chicago that she hoped the government was getting ready to deploy its “best clandestine warriors” to “exact revenge.”….