February 25, 2009

Froomkin on freeman

Dan Froomkin a propagandist for the Washington Post, did a profile of Chas Freeman three years ago for the Niemann Foundation. The blurb for the profile reads:

Chas Freeman is a Washington insider with a twist. A former ambassador to Saudi Arabia, he now runs a think tank dedicated to raising questions that otherwise might never get answered -- or even asked -- because they're too embarrassing, awkward, or difficult.

You can read the interview if you choose. Froomkin simply tosses Freeman softballs so that the latter can criticize the Bush administration. Consider the following Q & A:

Q. Are the Saudis winning or losing their battle against terrorism?

Freeman's view: The answer is that they're winning. (We, of course, are not.) So what is it that they are doing right?

1. They have essentially discredited the extremist ideology in their own mosques, by driving the radical imams from the pulpits.
2. They have co-opted or seduced or induced to defect a large number of people who were terrorists or were heading in that direction, and who are now going straight.
3. They're killing anybody who's left.

(See also Countering terrorism - for real, NiemanWatchdog.org, January 18, 2006)

What the Saudis are doing is precisely how the British succeeded against the IRA. By contrast, we are not dealing with the issue of ideology. Worse, our actions are actually provoking and aiding recruitment. We're killing a lot of people, but a great deal of those we are killing are not at all associated with extremists, they just happen to be in the way.

This is simply anti-Bush boilerplate. Froomkin doesn't follow up the question. He doesn't even ask Freeman if his positive (and overly simplistic) view of Saudi Arabia derives from the largess Saudi Arabia has directed to him.

So Froomkin while (falsely) praising Freeman for asking uncomfortable questions, fails to ask his subject anything remotely challenging.

Anyway I see that Froomkin has followed up his interview with an up-to-date puff piece on Freeman.

Froomkin links to a post at Think Progress, titled "Right Wing Outraged At Chas Freeman's Appointment To Head National Intelligence Council." If Froomkin or any other "journalist" were doing the job that Gabriel Schoenfeld did, the outrage would be universal. But Froomkin's more interested in Bush and Israel bashing than he is in journalism.

Both these articles are posted on a site called Nieman Watchdog, but as far as Freeman is concerned, Froomkin is a toothless lap dog.

UPDATE: Gateway Pundit has a good refutation of Freeman's assertions about the success of Saudi Arabia's anti-Jihad program. Again, Froomkin wasn't interested in doing his job as a journalist by asking Freeman uncomfortable questions. (via memeorandum)

Crossopsted on Yourish.

Posted by SoccerDad at February 25, 2009 1:34 AM
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Comments

3. They're killing anybody who's left.
.............................................
I suppose if the Bush administration had done this freeman would have then accused it of extra-judicial killings.

Posted by: Laura at February 25, 2009 3:10 PM
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