NYT Pushes Back at Trump Admin for Saying they Foiled Plot to Take Out ISIS Leader

Posted: Jul 24, 2017 9:20 AM
NYT Pushes Back at Trump Admin for Saying they Foiled Plot to Take Out ISIS Leader

Jenn brought you the report that The New York Times may have had a hand in foiling a plot to take out Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Gen. Tony Thomas, United States Special Operations Command, told Fox News's Catherine Herridge at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado Friday that media had leaked a lead on Baghdadi's location.

The media deduced that Thomas was referring to a story published by the Times in 2015, in which they reported on a raid that killed Islamic State figure Abu Sayyaf and captured his wife, Umm Sayyaf.

President Trump had apparently been watching, for he tweeted the following the morning after Thomas's remarks.

The Times had a few points to make in its defensive editorial, published Sunday. For starters, they write, the Pentagon first made the announcement about Sayyaf - not them.

But a review of the record shows that information made public in a Pentagon news release more than three weeks before the Times article, and extensively covered at the time by numerous news media outlets, would have tipped off Mr. Baghdadi that the United States was questioning an important Islamic State operative who knew of his recent whereabouts and some of his methods of communication. Further, the information in the Times article on June 8 came from United States government officials who were aware that the details would be published.

The Times noted that Kenneth McGraw, a spokesman for the Special Operations Command, did not offer an explanation as to which parts of their report were cause for concern.

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The paper also asked for an apology from "Fox & Friends Weekend" for reporting Gen. Thomas's claims as truth.