As has been documented at NewsBusters here, here, here and here, the predictable MSM response to the killing of Zarqawi has been to downplay its signficance. But there was one surprising bright spot late this morning. CNN host Carol Lin gave pull-out-now John Murtha a surprisingly rough run for his money.
Lin: "A very big day for this administration. Is it fair to say that this attack and the killing of Al-Zarqawi wouldn't have happened if US troops were not on the ground?"
Murtha was unwilling to concede the point: "I'm not sure about that. I'm not sure they couldn't have done it from the outside. If it's as portrayed, it was a bomb that killed him from the air, so I'm not sure about that."
Murtha, later, in an odd leap of logic: "I hope the Bush administration will take this as a signal to start working with other countries diplomatically to try to reduce our presence as quickly as we can."
So this stunning success, which was apparently achieved in a largely unilateral manner by the US military, is something we should take as a "signal" to work with other countries to get out? A signal from what - the Mother Ship?
Lin: "I want to point back to what Tony Snow said earlier today: 'Why are are you [the MSM] so hell-bent on saying we're going to get out tomorrow?"
Continued Lin: "That was the answer to reporters saying 'alright is the president going to be talking about withdrawals?' Tony Snow also went on to say, to critics who are calling for a pullout, what is the best way to win?
Lin then pointedly said to Murtha: "Today was a winning strike, congressman. Is there a value to having US forces still in Iraq?"
When Murtha continued to plump for a pull-out, Lin interjected:
"What do you think would be a reasonable time-table? You once said six months."
In a stunning bit of pessimism, Murtha mentioned: "We cannot win this. It's a civil war."
And finally, asked Lin, the skepticism in her tone clear: "So what do you think would happen if troops were to withdraw at this point?"
You go, Carol!
Finkelstein lives in the liberal haven of Ithaca, NY, where he hosts the award-winning public-access TV show 'Right Angle.' Mark will be a guest on the Lars Larson Show this evening at about 6 PM EDT to discuss MSM coverage of Zarqawi's death. Contact Mark at firstname.lastname@example.org