Boy, it's a good thing that Google and Facebook have enlisted "fact checkers" like the Associated Press, Snopes, and Politifact to vet questionable stories appearing in their news feeds.
Monday was supposed to be the sentencing hearing for Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, but his lawyer motioned to dismiss the case and asserted that President Trump’s critical comments during the 2016 election swayed the military court. Both CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News seemed to buy into the claims as they lamented how the admitted deserter would have to wait until Wednesday to learn his fate. They also omitted his praise for his Taliban captors.
In a military courtroom in Ft. Bragg, North Carolina on Monday, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl pleaded guilty to charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy and faces up to life in prison. Back in 2014, President Obama traded five dangerous terrorists to get Bergdahl back, and in a flawed political calculation, championed him as a 'hero.' Despite the massive blowback that followed the ill-advised move, the Big Three Networks omitted that from their Monday evening reports.
In a December 2 dispatch covering Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's request for a presidential pardon appearing at Page A18 in Saturday's print edition, New York Times reporter Charlie Savage insisted that President-Elect Donald Trump's 2015 campaign rally assertion that U.S. soldiers had died searching for Bergdahl after his desertion was false. Savage even claimed that allegations made by soldiers serving in Afghanistan at the time that "five to seven Americans had died searching for him ... (were) proved false."
In an exclusive story today for the Daily Beast, Shane Harris and Nancy Youssef give readers a sneak peek at the findings of an unpublished congressional probe criticizing the swap of alleged Army deserter Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl for five Gitmo detainees.
Appearing on MSNBC’s The Rundown on Monday, The Atlantic’s Washington editor-at-large Steve Clemons dismissed criticism of the Obama administration trading five Taliban prisoners for Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl: “Well, look, I think we need to turn this on its head. There's been a lot of conventional reporting about the Taliban Five....These are important people, but they were largely paper pushers.”
On Monday, as has been their habit going back at least to the Clinton administration, Investor's Business Daily's editorialists once again broke a story the establishment press likely could have reported years ago.
IBD revealed that the Obama administration "was secretly negotiating the Taliban Five's release without (Bowe) Bergdahl." IBD reasonably believes that coming up with any reason to get the five out of Guantanamo Bay was important to the administration, as it would set a precedent for releasing others from the facility, and eventually emptying and closing it against the will of the majority of Congress, the U.S. military, intelligence officials, and the American people.
Bush Derangement Syndrome is alive, well, and living in the head of Nancy A. Youssef at the Daily Beast.
In a March 26 item tagged "Fallen Hero" (?!) about the Army charging Bowe Bergdahl with "desertion and misbehaving before the enemy," the web site's Senior National Security Correspondent wrote that "the administration celebrated negotiating his release after years of failed bids by both the current and former administration." But Bergdahl walked away from his post in June 2009, five months after Barack Obama's inauguration. Youssef's report actually had worse components than that.
In an exclusive interview with Mitt Romney on Thursday's NBC Today, co-host Savannah Guthrie wondered if the 2012 presidential contender would have traded five Taliban terrorists for Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl if commander-in-chief: "It was controversial. The President presumably knew the circumstance of Bowe Bergdahl's leaving his post. He said, though, leave no soldier on the battlefield. If that had been you in the Oval Office, would you have made that same call?"
Following an announcement that Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl would be formally charged with desertion and endangering his fellow soldiers, on Thursday morning, ABC and CBS continued to omit the fact that at least one member of Bergdahl’s military unit died while searching for him in Afghanistan. In addition, the “big three” (ABC, CBS, and NBC) networks once again ignored a June 2014 clip of National Security Advisor Susan Rice praising Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl as “serving with honor and distinction.”
In their coverage of desertion charges filed against U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, the major broadcast networks on Wednesday night failed to mention that National Security Advisor Susan Rice had praised Bergdahl for serving “with honor and distinction.” Standing in sharp contrast to this glaring omission by the “big three” of ABC, CBS, and NBC, the clip of Rice’s claim on the June 1, 2014 broadcast of ABC’s This Week was shown on CNN and FNC newscasts.
CNN's Brooke Baldwin slanted towards the sympathizers of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl on Wednesday's CNN Newsroom, just minutes after the U.S. Army announced that the former captive would be charged with desertion. Baldwin asked special forces veteran Scott Mann, "You have those who...on the opposite end, [are] vilifying him. Again, this is someone who was held...for five years by terrorists. Is that not – this is what some say – is that not punishment enough?"