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Rather's latest outrage

By Murray Soupcoff
web posted March 25, 2002

Dan RatherWell, there they go again. Steeped in the moral relativism that's already made them clueless to the real meaning of 9/11, Dan Rather and CBS News have once again demonstrated their absolute lack of judgement regarding the appropriate role of responsible American journalists. According to a news report in a London daily (we didn't actually see the objectionable TV event we're about to describe), CBS News provided air time for an exclusive CBS interview with a murderous bunch of al-Qaida and Taliban survivors of Operation Anaconda, hiding in a cave nearby.

According to the London report, this exclusive interview was conducted "under great secrecy with a nightscope, which illuminated the armed and scowling figures in an unearthly pallor."

Some of the choice quotes from the militant interviewees included: "Revenge is in the air" and "Disappearing from the battlefield does not mean that the Taliban has gone." And the theme of this anti-American chatfest was that the al-Qaida and the Taliban weren't quite finished yet, and that Americans could expect a terrible defeat in the future (so all you worrywarts out there in TV Land, write your Congressman to bring our boys back home before they're wiped out in another Vietnam-style disaster).

Well, thanks Dan for that informative, patriotic update. Obviously, your main intent was to embarrass the Pentagon, and secondarily the Bush administration, by unsubtly suggesting that Pentagon officials engaged in some hypebole when they described the Anaconda operation as a huge success in eliminating the al-Qaida threat in that region. And secondarily it gave you and your cohorts yet another chance to provide some free publicity for your latest anti-American idols, all those plucky al-Quaeda freedom fighters from Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom defending the Afghan people against the nasty American invaders.

Oh dear, that does raise another troubling issue, doesn't it? After the events of 9/11, and the murderous al-Qaida assault on thousands of unarmed civilians in New York City, aren't those gritty al-Qaida fighters the enemy of the United States? Isn't the United States currently at war with these hate-filled henchmen of Osama bin Laden?

What? Oh, I see. You still don't get it. After all, in your mind, you were just trying to do your job of reporting the news and showing what might have been a somewhat different slant on the war in Afghanistan. After all, it would never have occurred to you or CBS News, after tracking down these fleeing al-Qaida and Taliban fighers, to quickly alert the United States military command in Afgahnistan (or even in Washington) -- so that the U.S. military could scramble some aircraft and bomb the hell out of the cave these terrorists were hiding in, before these hate-filled fanatics got a second chance to ambush American military personnel in the region, or perhaps be recruited for a future terrorist assault on defenseless American cities.

Just like the brain-dead CNN journalists who pioneered this kind of fifth-column collaboration with the enemy during the Gulf War, you just don't seem to get it: that you should be Americans first and journalists second when dealing with avowed enemies of your country, armed combatants who are dedicated to killing American soldiers and civilians. After all, would Edward R. Murrow have thought it appropriate to fly to occupied France after D-Day and broadcast an exclusive radio interview with a contingent of irascible Nazi soldiers on the run, on why American forces should withdraw from Europe (and save American lives) before the invincible Nazi military machine rolled them back into the sea?

Of course not. But then you're not Edward R. Murrow. You're Dan Rather and you live by another journalistic ethic -- that the enemy of your ideological enemy must be your friend. And we know who your ideological enemy is: none other than the President of the United States who has had the gall to hold onto a set of conservative values that just drive you up a wall.

And so, in your muddled mind, if the remaining al-Qaida and Taliban forces in Afghanistan have turned out to be the last hope for politically embarrassing this popular Republican president, then the al-Qadea and Taliban must be your friends. And hence they must get all the free publicity they can get, along with a public forum for their fanatical, hate-filled anti-American views.

A bit of advice, Dan. You appear to have gotten a little senile lately anway. So maybe it's time to retire your own personal war on America and go fishing or something. These days, nothing will suit you so well as permanent retirement.

Murray Soupcoff is the author of 'Canada 1984' and a former radio and television producer with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. He also was Executive Editor of We Compute Magazine for several years, and is now the Managing Editor of the popular Canadian conservative Web site, Iconoclast.ca.

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