The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, and the Los Angeles Times all failed to report on Rep. John P. Murtha's (D-PA) disclosure that military officials plan to request an additional $100 billion for the Iraq war in 2006
Both Rush Limbaugh and a Washington Times editorial repeated a distortion from the Drudge Report of recent comments by International Atomic Energy Agency director general Mohamed ElBaradei regarding how soon Iran might have a nuclear weapon; each claimed ElBaradei said Iran was "a few months" away. However, ElBaradei actually said that Iran may be able to produce a nuclear weapon "a few months" after it becomes capable of enriching uranium to a grade suitable for making weapons, which, according to the IAEA and news reports on U.S. intelligence, is at least two years away.
On his radio program, Rush Limbaugh falsely suggested that the "9-11 Commission didn't say anything" about "[t]his whole picture of the U.S. as a torturous, torturing, barbaric institution." In fact, the 9-11 Commission's final report called for the U.S. government to "engage its friends to develop a common coalition approach toward the detention and humane treatment of captured terrorists."
During a discussion of Condoleezza Rice's trip to Europe on The Radio Factor, Bill O'Reilly stated, "I understand Europe. They're cowards." He went on to add, "[T]hey're cowards over there, with all due respect, and I'm generalizing. But by and large, the European population is soft and afraid. ... They won't confront evil on any level. It is anything goes, just leave me alone. Give me my check from the government and leave me alone."
The New York Times cited a poll to claim that "the idea of a quick pullout does not seem to be a winner with voters," referring to Rep. John P. Murtha's (D-PA) plan to withdraw American forces from Iraq. However, the poll question cited by the Times addressed the "immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq," while Murtha's plan calls for the withdrawal "at the earliest practicable date."
The Washington Post reported that House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi adopted "a position that polls show most Americans do not support" when she backed Rep. John Murtha's Iraq withdrawal proposal. However, a review of recent polling data found no polls that asked whether respondents support Murtha's proposal to withdraw troops "at the earliest practicable date," or on his estimate that it should take six months to do so.
Following U.S. Sen. John Kerry's appearance on CBS' Face the Nation, conservative weblogs and radio hosts falsely claimed that he had called American troops "terrorists" while ignoring the substance behind his statement. The distortion eventually found its way into the mainstream press.
On MSNBC News Live, NBC News correspondent Chip Reid reported that some Democrats are concerned they may be "portrayed as the cut-and-run party" for the 2006 elections. But "cut and run" is a Republican term used to disparage Democratic proposals advocating timetables and plans for U.S. troop withdrawal in Iraq.
An AP article about the assessment of the United States' counterterrorism performance by former members of the 9-11 Commission noted but did not challenge the Bush administration's claim that it supported the commission during its investigation into the events surrounding 9-11.
Bill O'Reilly said that U.S. troops should have "destroyed" the Iraqi city of Fallujah "a long time ago" as a "message" to insurgents.
A Washington Times editorial misleadingly cited outdated polling data to show that Americans are evenly divided about whether it was worth it go to war in Iraq in the first place.
A Washington Times editorial gave readers a distorted impression of how quickly Iran could construct nuclear weapons.
Although President Bush and his administration routinely described Iraq as an "urgent," "gathering," or "mortal" threat, Michael Barone claimed The New York Times made a "howling error" in reporting that the administration said Saddam Hussein posed an "imminent" threat.
While appearing on Fox News Sunday, Fox News' Brit Hume and NPR's Mara Liasson mischaracterized Rep. Murtha's Iraq redeployment plan as "pull out now." In fact, no prominent Democratic political figure, including Murtha, has proposed pulling out of Iraq immediately.