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« on: September 16, 2004, 06:51:39 PM »

MRC Says Anti-Bush Reports Costing CBS Credibility

by Chad Groening
September 16, 2004

(AgapePress) - A Virginia-based media watchdog organization is challenging CBS to apologize to America and come clean with the public about its news reporting based on controversial documents that cast President Bush in a bad light.

Rich Noyes of the Media Research Center believes CBS has done false and misleading reporting about George W. Bush's National Guard service. He says the network has refused to acknowledge that documents it has used as sources could very well be forgeries -- although CBS news anchor Dan Rather, who first reported on the documents last week, has stated he would "like to break that story" if the documents he used to discredit the president turn out to be forged. (See earlier article)

According to Noyes, even other left-leaning media outlets are highly skeptical about the sources upon which CBS has based its reporting, and that's a problem. "When you have ABC News, the Washington Post, the LA Times, and a host of other liberally-inclined news organizations seriously questioning what CBS is doing, and CBS is standing out there all alone, it doesn't look good for CBS," he says.

The MRC is challenging CBS to admit its mistake to the public and expose the source that used what appear to some to be forged documents to cast doubt on President Bush's military service record. But Noyes suspects the network may be deliberately misleading the public.

The MRC spokesman says at first the whole episode had all the earmarks of "a campaign dirty trick" on both the public and on CBS. To all appearances, he says, "it looked last week like CBS was simply the tool of somebody that planted documents with them -- documents that turned out not to be true -- and they were suffering."

But for Noyes, the major network's apparent determination to stand by its reporting, despite the suspicions surrounding the source, has put the matter in a different light. He suggests that, unless the network is complicit with some liberal agenda, its actions are difficult to understand.

"Now, with the way CBS is sticking with this story through thick and thin," the media analyst says, "even as the evidence mounts and other independent investigations show that there's really nothing there except a big forgery, the fact that CBS is sticking with it is just bizarre and incredible.

Noyes adds that CBS is "damaging the credibility of a great news organization" by failing to acknowledge the questionable nature of certain sources used in its reporting on negative allegations about President Bush's military record.

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