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Longtime NBC News reporter slams Pro-War Posture of Corporate Media

Veteran NBC Reporter Rips Pro-War Posture of Corporate Media in Scathing Resignation Letter

“That a network insider has blown the whistle on how all this works, and how MSNBC and NBC have become Ground Zero for these political pathologies of militarism and servitude to security state agencies, while not surprising, is nonetheless momentous, Portside,   January 5, 2019 Jessica Corbett  COMMON DREAMS

In a biting resignation letter published in full by CNN on Wednesday, longtime NBC News reporter, commentator, and military analyst William “Bill” Arkin blasted the corporate media network for embracing U.S. “national security leaders and generals” while “ignoring the empirical truth of what they have wrought: There is not one country in the Middle East that is safer today than it was 18 years ago. Indeed the world becomes ever more polarized and dangerous.”

Reflecting on his past couple of decades working with the networkin addition to writing books and columns for major newspapers and serving as as military adviser to human rights and environmental groups—Arkin laments: “My expertise, though seeming to be all the more central to the challenges and dangers we face, also seems to be less valued at the moment. And I find myself completely out of [sync] with the network, being neither a day-to-day reporter nor interested in the Trump circus.”

Noting in his 2,228-word memo that “the world and the state of journalism [are] in tandem crisis,” Arkin delivers a scathing critique of how NBC has responded to the foreign policy of President Donald Trump—whom he calls “an ignorant and incompetent impostor”—asserting that “in many ways NBC just began emulating the national security state itself—busy and profitable. No wars won but the ball is kept in play.”

However, Arkin also delivers a broader condemnation of the network’s coverage of the so-called War on Terror in the nearly 18 years since 9/11, and how it has helped produce a scenario in which “perpetual war has become accepted as a given in our lives.” He writes:

Seeking refuge in its political horse race roots, NBC (and others) meanwhile report the story of war as one of Rumsfeld vs. the Generals, as Wolfowitz vs. Shinseki, as the CIA vs. Cheney, as the bad torturers vs. the more refined, about numbers of troops and number of deaths, and even then Obama vs. the Congress, poor Obama who couldn’t close Guantanamo or reduce nuclear weapons or stand up to Putin because it was just so difficult. We have contributed to turning the world national security into this sort of political story. I find it disheartening that we do not report the failures of the generals and national security leaders. I find it shocking that we essentially condone continued American bumbling in the Middle East and now Africa through our ho-hum reporting………..

The letter was welcomed by many critics of corporate media and American militarism—including The Intercept‘s Glenn Greenwald, who praised Arkin’s “scathing and unflinching” passages describing NBC and MSNBC “as pro-war propaganda outlets who exist to do little more than amplify and serve the security state agencies that are most devoted to opposing Trump, including their mindless opposition to Trump’s attempts (with whatever motives) to roll back some of the excesses of imperialism, aggression, and U.S. involvement in Endless War, as well as to sacrifice all journalistic standards and skepticism about generals and the U.S. war machine if doing so interferes in their monomaniacal mission of denouncing Trump.”

While pointing out that the pro-war posture of American corporate media network “has long been obvious, and deeply disturbing,” Greenwald notes, “Still, that a network insider has blown the whistle on how all this works, and how MSNBC and NBC have become Ground Zero for these political pathologies of militarism and servitude to security state agencies, while not surprising, is nonetheless momentous given how detailed and emphatic he is in his condemnations.”

Here is the full text of Arkin’s resignation letter, as reported by CNN and confirmed by NBC:……. https://portside.org/2019-01-05/veteran-nbc-reporter-rips-pro-war-posture-corporate-media-scathing-resignation-letter

 

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January 7, 2019 - Posted by | media, USA

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