In Bangladesh on Monday, Secretary of State John Kerry had a concern about media coverage of terrorism he felt he needed to communicate, namely that "the media would do us all a service if they didn’t cover it quite as much." That would be a great thing, apparently, because then "People wouldn’t know what’s going on." You can't make this stuff up.
The dateline location at Diplomatic Writer Matt Lee's August 29 story at the Associated Press on Kerry's related speech indicates that he is accompanying the Kerry entourage on his current trip. Lee, who has acquired a reputation as a pesky questioner at State Department briefings in DC, failed to include Kerry's media-related remark, obviously the most controversial element in his speech, in his report. This move by a veteran reporter at the nation's de facto gatekeeping wire service likely influenced the three major broadcast networks, as Curtis Houck at NewsBusters noted Tuesday evening, to almost completely ignore Kerry's remark in their recent newscasts.
UPDATE, 11 p.m.: See this new post: "Unreal: Language in Offensive AP Tweet on Israel-Gaza-Congress Led Its Actual Story Early Tuesday"
It would appear that the Associated Press is branching out into new avenues of bias and submission.
Since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009, its journalists have worked feverishly to earn the wire service its U.S.-based nickname as the Administration's Press. Now a still-present tweet early this morning (HT Twitchy) from AP's official Twitter account demonstrates a desire to be seen as Hamas's Press:
Of all the Associated Press reporters out there, Matt Lee, whose beat is the State Department, appears to have the least patience with the pablum (and worse) he is expected to swallow from the Obama administration.
In September of last year, as the situation in Syria escalated, Obama administration Secretary of State John Kerry proposed a non-mandatory request for a Congressional vote on U.S. military involvement in Syria. After hearing State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki defend that proposal as "courageous," Lee, after getting a non-response to a question as why it was courageous, famously asked: "Was there some kind of, like, group spine-removal op procedure at the White House over the weekend?" Though he may not have exercised the best judgment this morning in posting the tweet which follows the jump, at least we can say that Lee hasn't taken up permanent residence in the wire service's otherwise very crowded water-carrier wing:
The Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, wants Americans to know that the Obama adminisration is really, really upset — but not at Hamas for committing terrorist acts, using women and children as human shields, and digging tunnels for the purpose of mass-murdering civilians on Rosh Hashanah.
No-no-no. Team Obama is "fuming" (i.e., their poor little feeeeewings are hurt) because Israeli officials and the Israeli media — even its liberal wing — are furiously criticizing U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry for apparently doing all he can to sell out the Jewish state's positions in attempting to negotiate a ceasefire with Hamas.
Associated Press reporter Matt Lee has been on the State Department beat for almost four years. At times, he has been one of a very few establishment press reporters who will challenge Obama administration officials when their assertions become too brazen to tolerate.
One of those times (HT Business Insider via Hot Air) occurred yesterday, when hapless State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki attempted to defend as "courageous" John Kerry's statement that the administration's non-mandatory request for a Congressional vote on U.S. military involvement in Syria:
Lee and Sullivan try to excuse the State Department's inaction on the vast majority of roughly 60 specific offers of assistance from over twenty nations, many of which go back to late April and early May (detailed in a 4-page State Dept. PDF here), because almost all of the offers are being made with an expectation that the costs of such assistance will be reimbursed. By my count:
- 15 of those assistance offers involve the provision of "containment boom" to protect beaches, shoreline, and other sensitive areas.
- Roughly 10 of those 15 containment boom offers are over a month old, and a few were made on or before April 30, over fifty days ago.
- Out of all 60 offers made involving all forms of goods and services, roughly a half-dozen have been accepted.
The reason Lee and Sullivan cast these offers as proof of a "double standard" is -- wait for it -- because the U.S. doesn't get reimbursed when it provides aid in natural disasters like earthquakes, and because many of the countries involved, several of which are dirt poor, receive American foreign aid.
Here are the petty pair's first few paragraphs: