Promoting 'peace' at the post
12/18/2002 12:00:00 AM - Brent Bozell
In the ongoing wild goose chase for the "conservative" major
media, leftists are complaining that anti-war voices are being shut out.
Liberal media outlets, always more sensitive to complaints from the Left
than from the Right, have snapped out of their post 9-11 patriotic stupor
and are back to giving the "peace" movement the spotlight.
Liberals complain about everything, but I dare them to fault The
Washington Post, which is getting more and more aggressive in promoting the
"peace" movement now that the Democrats don't have to worry as much about
the dangers of pacifism at the polls.
It all started with a "peace" rally in Washington on Oct. 26,
claiming 100,000 protesters, which received Page One treatment in the Post.
(The annual March for Life regularly attracts that kind of crowd but has
trouble making the front page of the paper's Metro section.) Leftists
pounded those retrograde right-wing media outfits, like the New York Times
and National Public Radio, for failing to hype this event. But something
strange happened on the way to the front page. No one bothered to look at
what was really said at the podium.
The peace movement has become a convention of and for kooks.
Former attorney general Ramsey Clark -- yes, him again -- compared the U.S.
government to the Nazis: "Heinrich Himmler led the Gestapo. He said, 'Shoot
first, and ask questions afterward, and I will protect you.' And that's what
we plan to do with Iraq and other countries." If that wasn't loopy enough,
the kook-in-chief continued: "The government takes as much pride in
destroying the Declaration of Independence as well as the Bill of Rights as
in anything else it does. It wants to end the idea of individual freedom and
to make people do what the government says, even if that means martial law."
of this noteworthy?
And yet not a word of this appeared in the Post. This is not at
all unusual. Liberal reporters routinely ignore the newsmakers at left-wing
rallies -- the rally's leaders -- and instead select their soundbites from
among the "mainstream protesters," as one ABC producer called them during
the Gulf War. In this story, the Post found people like 22-year-old Larina
Brown from the University of Minnesota at Morris, who was relieved by the
large crowd, since "I really wanted this to be a big statement, to show it's
not just radical, anti-American people who go to these things."
No, they just speak at these things, but you'd never know it
reading the Washington Post.
Since the rally, the "peace" movement has enjoyed a flurry of
positive Post stories. On Dec. 2, reporter Evelyn Nieves graced the top of
Page One with a story claiming an "extraordinary array" of groups was
somehow newsworthy in opposing the war. Nieves, who also sidelines for the
radical magazine Mother Jones, claimed it was somehow "news" that the same
old, tired left-wing assortment of unions, businessmen-pacifists, former
veterans and religious activists was actively protesting.
On Dec. 10, the front page of the Style section touted "The
Peace Warriors," with reporter David Montgomery delivering the regular
kook-smoothing pitch: "But let's not define the movement only by its wild
frontiers." The major organizer of the October rally of "100,000,"
International ANSWER, was in need of a scrubbing, so Montgomery wrote:
"ANSWER is not a socialist organization, but key members of its brain trust
happen to be active in the Workers World Party."
This is a little like saying that some old-time Southern men's
group isn't racist, but its brain trust "happens to be active" in the KKK.
The Workers World Party are Trotskyite communists of the most virulent sort.
Their own Web site pledges "solidarity" with "workers" from Cuba to China
struggling for socialism while Washington -- the center of "world
imperialism" -- tries to stop them "in a global class struggle." What does
"peace" or "protest" mean in these ossified communist regimes other than a
life in prison or a bullet in the head?
In a nutshell, the Post is giving the Left exactly what it
wants: puffball pieces on the peaceniks with no real look at their basic
ideology, no discussion of their America-hatred, no investigation into their
funding sources. And is it admirable, or in the interests of peace, to rain
rhetorical fire on the demonized United States while we're fighting a global
war against terrorists and their state sponsors?
For an exploration of those points, you'll have to buy some