By: Bethany Stotts
Accuracy in Media
NSA defector Edward Snowden caused great damage to U.S. national security when he stole and leaked classified information to Glenn Greenwald. But The New York Times would like the public to think of Greenwald as one big “pussycat”—David Carr’s word, not mine—and someone who loves dogs.
The Times’ softball story glosses over the most controversial aspects of Greenwald’s career, casting him instead as the “ultimate alpha, ferocious and unbending” on television and in print, but a “softy” who relies on his “husband” when at home.
The only “news” out of the puff piece is that Greenwald, a supposedly independent journalist, is now in hock to a billionaire who pays his bills. And he’s proud to be in this position, since this critic of American capitalism is now rolling in dough and creating his own media empire.
Shouldn’t the Times have at least hinted at Greenwald’s extremist views?
It’s true that Greenwald, in some respects, defies traditional labels. On the one hand, he frequently sounds like a far-left socialist. On the other hand, he strikes some, such as those at the Cato Institute, as a libertarian of sorts.
In any case, there can be no doubt that he serves the interests of the enemies of the United States and Israel. The Glenn Greenwald brand is one of promoting Marxist and Islamic critics of U.S. foreign policy. They are the ones who benefit from scaling back the NSA programs he exposed, using documents supplied by NSA defector Edward Snowden.
But the Times story leaves out key aspects of Greenwald’s character, which are only hinted at in Greenwald’s discussion of his own work. “There are others things, like the 7,000-word story we just did on the surveillance of Muslim Americans that 15 people probably worked on—the video, graphic and editing resources make a huge difference,” says Greenwald. “But I wanted this to be simple and I wanted it to be mine.”
That particular scoop “fell flat,” argues Cliff Kincaid. Snowden’s revelations, made through Greenwald, mean the “NSA has been doing its job,” he wrote in July. “They are suggesting that the ‘Muslim-American Leaders’ under surveillance have no associations with subversives or terrorists, but that has not proved to be the case.”
“One of the individuals allegedly under surveillance was Nihad Awad of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), a Muslim Brotherhood spin-off,” continued Kincaid.
CAIR is the group that just co-sponsored a congressional briefing on alleged international law violations committed by Israel in defending itself against Hamas rocket attacks from Gaza. CAIR’s own website showed Nihad Awad at a “protest in support of Palestinians” in Washington D.C., speaking at a podium with the words “AnswerCoalition.org” in front of him. The “Answer Coalition” is a long-time communist front group.
Greenwald has spoken at events sponsored by CAIR and the International Socialist Organization (ISO). Greenwald has said, “al-Qaeda’s 9/11 terrorist attacks on America were ‘very minimal in scope compared to the level of deaths that the United States has been bringing to the world for decades—from Vietnam to illegal wars in Central America…’” according to Kincaid. Now, Greenwald has set his sights on condemning Israel as well.
In the softball feature, Carr highlights Greenwald’s “uncharacteristically brief post about the huge number of civilian casualties in the Gaza conflict,” for which Greenwald created his own pie charts.
In the post, Greenwald calls terrorism “devoid of discernible meaning,” a “fear-mongering slogan” and then questions which side is really the terrorists—Hamas or Israel. His sources (CNN and The New York Times) for the number of deaths on the Palestinian side glean their information from the Gaza Health Ministry, which has a vested interest in inflating the numbers of civilians killed. In addition, Hamas stages its attacks from civilian areas, making civilians pay when retaliation comes from Israel.
Yet Greenwald asserts that “The statistics used are unduly generous toward Israel, since ‘militants’ in Gaza are often nothing more than residents who take up arms to defend their homes against an invading and occupying army.” In fact, the “militants”—a term also used by many in the media—are actually terrorists.
Acting as a shill for Snowden, Greenwald hopes to damage the U.S. and Israel by showing that the U.S. provides signals intelligence and assistance to Israel—a long-time ally. “What the documents show is that the NSA and Israel have been cooperating to identify terrorists,” writes Kincaid in his latest article. “This is precisely what they should be doing.”
These are non-scoop scoops by Greenwald. The New York Times should not be giving such favorable coverage to this radical leftist who has made a name for himself by conspiring with Snowden, and making unjust comparisons between Israel and Hamas.