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Wednesday, May 4, 2011
NewsBusters Unhappy People Are Saying Nice Things About Obama
Topic: NewsBusters

At the Media Research Center, saying something nice about President Obama is the same thing as being liberally biased -- even when it involves the death of Osama bin Laden. So the boys at NewsBusters are strictly policing that:

  • A May 2 post by Tom Blumer complained that the New York Times was "not waiting for history to play out" because a photo caption stated that "there was little question that Mr. Obama's presidency had forever been changed" because of bin Laden's death.
  • Mark Finkelstein got all huffy when Donny Deutsch declared that "I have never seen a more commanding Commander-in-Chief": "But presumably Donny was sentient in 1982 when Reagan told Gorbachev what to do with his wall.  And surely Deutsch was around in 2001 when George W. Bush made his impromptu bullhorn speech at Ground Zero itself."
  • Noel Sheppard was perturbed that the Huffington post's Howard Fineman declared that "Obama just proved himself -- vividly, in almost Biblical terms -- to be an effective commander-in-chief of the armed forces of the United States." So he dismissed the idea that killing bin Laden was important: "The man seen by some as the biggest threat to international security was taken out Sunday, and markets collectively yawned. Quite contrary to Fineman's raves, this was hardly Biblical. Traders of oil - and, in particular, gold - certainly didn't feel our world suddenly became safer without bin Laden's existence."
  • Matthew Balan groused that NPR called the death of bin Laden a "game changer politically."

NewsBusters is just as upset that former President Bush might be taken to task for not capturing bin Laden under his watch. Ken Shepherd expressed annoyance that Time's Joe Klein noted that Bush "deserves both credit and blame" for bin Laden's capture, the blame part coming from "Bush's decision to divert attention from the goal by going to war in Iraq."

Shepherd responded: "But if Afghanistan was and always has been a special forces war -- even under Bush -- how was engaging in a more conventional military operation in Iraq a diversion?" Gee, perhaps because Iraq was a much larger operation and troops were pulled from Afghanistan to focus on Iraq?

Shepherd continued: "Even if it diverted public attention, is Klein arguing the U.S. military and U.S. intelligence establishment cannot handle two military theaters of operation at a time?" Given that the Taliban re-established itself in Afghanistan while the U.S. was focusing on Iraq, that could be a valid argument.

Kyle Drennen similarly complained that NBC's Richard Engel called the Iraq war "a distraction from the United States' original mission to find Bin Laden, stop Al Qaeda, and prevent another 9/11," adding that "Anchor Brian Williams did not label the piece as commentary." Does Drennen really think that is merely an opinion rather than documented fact?

Posted by Terry K. at 3:00 AM EDT

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