Since President Trump took office, CNN has been trying to gaslight the country into believing that the President’s friendly relationship with some of the hosts on Fox News was somehow not a standard part of Washington D.C.’s revolving door (Obama hired at least 30 liberal media folks). Now, during Sunday’s so-called “Reliable Sources”, host and media janitor Brian Stelter took the feud with their better-rated rival further and suggested that the President got seemingly all of his military advice from Fox News.
Trump recently called off a planned military strike on Iran because it would have left 150 people dead. He had let it be known that he felt it would not have been a measured response to Iran’s aggression, since they had not killed anyone in their attacks. To that development, Stelter wondered: “So, where is President Trump getting his information, his advice?”
Stelter’s answered his own question with an outdated soundbite from a Meet the Press interview Trump did with moderator Chuck Todd back in 2015:
CHUCK TODD: Who do you talk to for military advice, right now?
DONALD TRUMP: Well, I watch the shows. I mean, I really see a lot of great -- you know, when you watch your show and all the other shows and you have the generals and you have certain people –
“‘The shows,’ he said. And of course, that was in 2015. Trump was just a candidate then. Now the President commands the armed forces but he is still listening to ‘the shows,’” Stelter declared.
Citing a New York Times report, Stelter claimed Trump was “taking advice from, among other people, Tucker Carlson, the Fox host has been staunchly in the anti-war camp, advising the president-- pleading with the president not to attack Iran. But there's also a pro-war faction at Fox. Sean Hannity talking about Trump bombing the hell out of Iran.”
Despite citing that-Sunday’s fresh interview between Todd and Trump at other points in his show, Stelter misled his meager viewership on Trump’s advice. The first topic they discussed on Meet the Press was how Trump came to his decision to not bomb Iran. Here’s a hint, it involved generals (click “expand”):
DONALD TRUMP: So, they came and they said, ‘sir, we're ready to go. We'd like a decision.’ I said, ‘I want to know something before you go. How many people will be killed?’ In this case Iranians. I said, ‘how many people are going to be killed?’ ‘Sir, I'd like to get back to you on that.’ Great people, these generals. They said -- came back, said, ‘sir, approximately 150.’ And I thought about it for a second and I said, ‘you know what, they shot down an unmanned drone, plane, whatever you want to call it, and here we are sitting with 150 dead people that would have taken place probably within a half an hour after I said go ahead.’ And I didn't like it. I didn't think it was -- I didn't think it was proportionate.
That loud thud you heard was Stelter’s false narrative falling flat.
The supposed expert Stelter invited on was CNN national security analyst Samantha Vinograd, someone who has proved herself to be a complete loon when analyzing Trump’s foreign policy. After Stelter wondered if she felt “safer knowing that the President can be influenced by these pro and anti-war factions on Fox News,” Vinograd lived up to her reputation.
One of the first things Vinograd proclaimed was that Trump’s administration was controlled by a “shadow cabinet” manned by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and “military advisers that are on television that may not, in fact, have any military experience.”
She then seemed to argue that CNN’s cast of former generals was somehow better than Fox News’s and whined that “Donald Trump should turn off the television and get back to the situation room.”
According to Stelter, Trump’s Iran decision was supposedly just another example of the “Fox-Trump feedback loop.”
This ‘reporting’ was anything but “facts first”. It was narrative above all and to the garbage bin with the truth. This is CNN.
The transcript is below, click "expand" to read:
CNN’s Reliable Sources
June 23, 2019
11:18:32 a.m. Eastern
BRIAN STELTER: President Trump making plans for a strike on Iran, then pulling back. And now questions about what will happen next with tensions between the U.S. and Iran. So, where is President Trump getting his information, his advice? Well, you’ll remember, that in 2015, one of the last times he was on Meet the Press, he told Chuck Todd about his military advisers, where he gets military advice and this was the answer.
CHUCK TODD: Who do you talk to for military advice, right now?
DONALD TRUMP: Well, I watch the shows. I mean, I really see a lot of great -- you know, when you watch your show and all the other shows and you have the generals and you have certain people --
STELTER: “The shows,” he said. And of course, that was in 2015. Trump was just a candidate then. Now the President commands the armed forces but he is still listening to “the shows”.
The New York Times reporting this weekend that Trump has been taking advice from, among other people, Tucker Carlson, the Fox host has been staunchly in the anti-war camp, advising the president-- pleading with the president not to attack Iran. But there's also a pro-war faction at Fox. Sean Hannity talking about Trump bombing the hell out of Iran.
And here is what's interesting about what happened. After the President pulled back from the strike plan, the hosts on Fox, some of them like Brian Kilmeade said it was a mistake, it showed weakness. But then others like Judge Jeanine Pirro are now praising the president.
JEANINE PIRRO: The man has common sense, doesn't get caught up in the weeds and continues to keep us safe. [Transition] And that, my friends, is a good news Trump story.
STELTER: With me now is CNN national security analyst Samantha Vinograd. Sam, do you feel safer knowing that the President can be influenced by these pro and anti-war factions on Fox News?
SAMANTHA VINOGRAD: Certainly not, Brian.
You know, we’ve known for a long time President Trump has a shadow cabinet. A shadow cabinet of foreign leaders, who Vladimir Putin and President Erdogan to military advisers that are on television that may not, in fact, have any military experience. And by the way, Brian, don't have access to actual intelligence.
We have former generals on CNN as well, that have military opinions. They have opinions on calling off the strike in Iran. They don't have up-to-date intelligence on the state of play on the ground. What the Iranian response might be like if the United States went ahead with the strike. And for that reason, no, Donald Trump should turn off the television and get back to the situation room.
And the fact that he is wargaming through the media right now. He’s tweeting about why he called off the strike or pulled it back, that’s costly. In my opinion, he made the right decision in calling off the strike but the fact that he is allowing this to play out in the media means that the whole world knows about his indecision. And, by the way, Iran can use this to play the victim card. Every time the president tweets about his plans, Iran can say that the United States was about to attack them. This should all be happening behind closed doors and President Trump should turn off the television for a change.
STELTER: It does show the Fox-Trump feedback loop.