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‘What if Iranians chanted death to journalists?’ Stelter and cohorts dismiss ‘death to America’ chants

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CNN’s Brian Stelter is apparently struggling with the definition of “patriotism” as he delivered an obviously partisan commentary on the state of journalism in the wake of tensions with Iran.

The host of “Reliable Sources” made the case that “patriotism is alive and well in America’s newsrooms” during his monologue Sunday as he argued that this entails questioning everything President Trump has to say because “lying seems to be this government’s specialty.”

Stelter attacked the Trump administration’s “track record” on truth as he turned attention to the latest crisis with Iran following a deadly drone strike ordered by the president which killed a top Iranian military commander.

“As many people have pointed out this week, a crisis like this one is precisely when credibility is needed the most — and Trump doesn’t have it,” he said.

“Reporters need to avoid being cynical. We have to avoid being cynical we have to question everything, especially with memories of the leadup to the Iraq War. Journalistic values demand that skepticism and patriotism demands it,” Stelter added with a straight face.

“Let’s talk about patriotism for a minute,” he continued as if talking to a classroom of ignorant students.

“Don’t be fooled by the propagandists who are going to tell you to wear blinders in the days and weeks and months ahead. They’re already starting to do this. They’re starting to tell you just rally around the flag,” he said.

“But it is patriotic to ask for evidence. It is patriotic to question official accounts, to wonder if the public is being manipulated into a wider war. It is patriotic to ask — as Fox’s Tucker Carlson did the other day — Who’s actually benefiting from this?” Stelter went on, referring to Carlson’s “anti-war stance” during his Fox News show monologue.

“It is patriotic to hold our leaders accountable,” Stelter declared, apparently blocking out how questions about accountability in Benghazi a few years ago have been deemed anything but patriotic to the left.

“But you are going to hear otherwise and you already are. It is already starting,” the CNN host said, playing a clip of Fox News’ Pete Hegseth bemoaning that it “feels like patriotism is largely dead among our journalism corps.”

“Pete, patriotism is alive and well in America’s newsrooms. But I suspect that kind of talk is going to keep up,” Stelter said smugly. “If this gets worse, if more missiles fly, the American press will come under more and more pressure to rally around the flag, to toe the line, and to save their questions for later. But, now is the time, right now, to insist on evidence and accountability.”

But with a trove of former Democratic officials and pundits making up the ranks of CNN’s team of political analysts, things are more partisan than patriotic at the network. And though Stelter condescendingly lectures journalists about being tough with their questions and demands for accountability, that is apparently only when it relates to Republicans or anyone else backing Trump.

The brand of patriotism CNN and other leftist media outlets have been demonstrating has been clearly one aimed at discrediting the president of the United States while giving America’s enemies the benefit of the doubt.

 

Frieda Powers

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