LA Times, Lies About Khalidi-Obama Affair, Then Engages In A Coverup

By William Mayer

October 29, 2008 - San Francisco, CA - - Anyone reading this piece is now aware that the Los Angeles Times is playing fast and loose with the truth regarding Barack Obama's presence at a controversial "farewell" party for former PLO terrorist Rashid Khalidi, a good friend of his.

A few thoughts.

1. The Times' explanation, that it had an agreement with someone - a leaker - who made available to the Times a tape of the event, doesn't pass the smell test. Why would someone pass a tape to the newspaper upon the assumption that its contents wouldn't be made public? What would be the purpose of that? It makes no logical sense and seems like a concocted dodge on the part of the organization.

2. The standard agreement, as everyone in the and out of the news business is aware, is to shield the identity of the leaker, so that they are not retaliated against. Liberal news organizations have pushed "whistleblower" laws for years with that in mind. Accepting important news information with the intent of suppressing it is not journalism. Distinctly the opposite, it's engaging in a cover-up.

3. Lets run a thought experiment...if Dick Cheney came to the Times with breathless news regarding Abu-Ghraib, and then asked it to bury the information would the Times have agreed? Of course not. To do so would have been a violation of the most basic journalistic standards - indefensible. If the Times had done that, then offered that "agreement with Cheney" up as a defense after the fact, it would have been laughed out of the business.

4. Nowhere in any of the Times' coverage of this story is it mentioned that Rashid Khalidi is a former terrorist, a member of the PLO when it was officially listed as terrorist organization. That information might have been helpful to its readers. The fact that information has been suppressed is further evidence of the Times' extraordinary bias, acting as news sanitizers and censors in this matter; clearly tilting towards one candidate.

5. The Times' statement today says, "The report included a detailed description of the tape." Wrong, there is no mention of the existence of any tape, no reference to it.

6. The original article, unaided by quotes or verifiable references is therefore merely a collage of assertions which can't be verified, because the Times refuses to make the contents of original source public, or even to quote from it.

7. At least in the Rather/CBS "forged but accurate," Bush service record fraud, CBS offered the foundation document for inspection, tainted as they knew it was. In this case the Times doesn't even aspire to such a low standard of journalistic proof.

8. Absent such proof and given the obvious bias demonstrated in the Times twisted explication of the matter, one must assume that it is lying.

9. The way in which this has been handled, is distinctly the opposite of the way the Times treated Arnold Schwarzenegger in '06 just before an election, gleefully reporting in detail, with embarrasing quotes, the contents of a leaked private meeting. That is instructive.

10. One can only conclude that the Times has fraudulently represented this matter and that it has also mischaracterized the nature of the events covered in the initial story of the Khalidi farewell party. The Times has engaged in a coverup, has repeatedly lied about it and is now reaping the rewards of its transparent mendacity.

1999-2008 LLC, William Mayer. All rights reserved.