On Friday's CBS This Morning, Mark Phillips all but hinted that Pope Francis had "taken sides" with Russia's Vladimir Putin and against President Obama in the international debate over military strikes in Syria. Phillips proposed that the Pope's letter to Putin "must have been music to the Russian president's ears."

The journalist also turned to a "Vatican historian" who once publicly attacked Francis' predecessor, Benedict XVI, as a "dictator", and likened him to Islamists. He also labeled the Pope's upcoming prayer and fasting vigil for peace in Syria a "religious street protest." [audio available here; video below the jump]



With all eyes on Syria and what the Obama administration is going to do in response to alleged chemical weapons use by Bashar Assad, many are concerned with how Vladimir Putin will react if we attack.

On Fox News's O'Reilly Factor Tuesday, syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer marvelously asked, "What's Russia going to do? Cancel another summit?"



President Obama is taking questions from the news media. In the comments section, tell us what you would ask if you were a White House reporter.

I'll be covering the questions journalists ask of the president below the page break. As always, I'm doing this on the fly, so transcriptions of questions may be imperfect:



NBC White House reporter Chuck Todd hotly dismissed on Twitter the planned NBC docudrama on Hillary Clinton: “NBC News has nothing to do w/Clinton mini series on NBC entertainment. So save your complaints.” Todd also tweeted: “Can already imagine how either Clinton lovers or haters will assume some sort of NBC News involvement. Trust me, we have day jobs.”

But there was Todd on the day-job on Wednesday’s Nightly News, playing three clips of Obama on ...NBC Entertainment’s Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Without any correction, Todd aired a clip of Obama falsely claiming Putin “headed up the KGB,” which was buried with the Soviet Union in 1991. (Leno and the morning shows didn’t challenge Obama on his error, either.) Todd promoted Obama as “buttoned-down, measured” while Putin was “famously flamboyant” in photo-ops: 



Barack Obama delivered one gaffe after another in his August 6 interview with Jay Leno, but the networks that usually mock every mistake or slip of the tongue made by Republicans ignored the President's verbal mishaps.

ABC's Good Morning America, CBS's This Morning and NBC's Today show, on Wednesday morning, all bypassed the chance to criticize Obama for: downplaying the threat of terrorism; falsely claiming Vladimir Putin once ran the KGB; placing the Atlantic coast cities of Savannah, Charleston and Jacksonville on the Gulf of Mexico; confusing the Winter Olympics with the Summer Olympics. (video after the jump)



"I think those in the American government, looking at Vladimir Putin and what he's done, are feeling resentful and they're feeling dissed. They're wondering why he's treating America so roughly."

So said Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan on CBS's Face the Nation Sunday.



This Fourth of July weekend is turning into an unforseen laff-fest.  Yesterday we had NBC featuring a photo of President Obama making what he might have thought was an assertive hand gesture while discussing the situation in Egypt with his aides.

Today treats us to historian Douglas Brinkley, on Morning Joe, claiming that when it comes to foreign policy, President Obama reminds him of, yes, Supreme-Allied-Commander-turned-President Dwight D. Eisenhower.  View the chuckle-worthy video after the jump.



Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer had some harsh words for President Obama Monday in the wake of Russia and China's handling of National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden.

Appearing on Fox News's Special Report, Krauthammer said, "If there's no element of respect or fear - and you saw it in the summit with the head of the United States and head of Russia and China within the last two weeks - they care nothing for what Obama says, and they know that when he makes a threat, it carries no weight behind it."



After 56 years in broadcasting and more than 50,000 interviews across the U.S., anyone else would be considered a prime candidate for retirement, but that doesn't apply to Larry King, who will launch a “mold-breaking political talk show” in June for the Russia Today online TV network.

Perhaps failed CNN-FOX-MSNBC-Current anchor Keith Olbermann should pay attention. If no one in America will hire you, take your act international.



CNN's Erin Burnett on Monday made a stunning observation about President Obama's open mic gaffe with Russia's Dmitry Medvedev.

Without specifically mentioning fellow CNNer Kyra Phillips by name, Burnett hysterically said, "I guess it's better than being in the bathroom with your open microphone" (video follows with transcript and commentary):



Liberal MSNBC anchor Martin Bashir on Monday compared Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry to former KGB agent Vladimir Putin, citing the fact that both supposedly love guns and "shoot to kill."

After playing a clip of Perry expressing his appreciation for the American tradition of firearms ownership, Bashir bizarrely proclaimed that "Mr. Perry's wild west show calls to mind another world leader. Yes, Vladimir Putin." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]



It appears that at NPR, even a fat lip for the President is to be heralded as a crowning achievement furthering his prestige and street cred when dealing with despots like Kim Jong Il and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

According to Scott Simon, a president with a "gnarly, vivid scar" might even be able to intimidate China's rulers into halting their currency manipulation (audio follows with partial transcript and commentary):