November 20, 2003

Keller Watch It's real sloppy

Keller Watch

It's real sloppy over at the NYT today.

First MaDo, of course.

"Wearing a blue sash and a tiara with enough diamonds to pay for a year of the Iraqi occupation, the British queen gave the American president a bit of a poke, a light sideswipe with her handbag, as it were.

In her remarks honoring Mr. Bush at the state dinner last night, Queen Elizabeth unleashed a barrage of favorable references to the most dreaded words in the Bush-Cheney lexicon: "multilateral order," "trans-Atlantic partnership," "other allies" and "effective international institutions."

"At the very core of the new international and multilateral order, which emerged after the shared sacrifices of that last terrible world war, was a vital dynamic trans-Atlantic partnership working with other allies to create effective international institutions," she said. This, to a president who has never met an international institution he did not try to wreck and who's darting around like a fugitive in the land of the "special relationship," using Buck House as a safe house." [emphasis added]

Note the loaded language that intimates Dubya is a criminal (Perhaps Dowd wants to give Harold Pinter a run for his money?).

But more important, take another gander at the bolded statement. It's factually untrue (see below) and, of course, an absurdity.

Does Bill Keller care?

Nor was the Queen needling Bush in her toast as Dowd says.

She was rather echoing Bush's speech of yesterday.

I mean, even the Beeb's excerpts of the speech make that very clear.

Here's the key graf:

"Like 11 Presidents before me, I believe in the international institutions and alliances that America helped to form and helps to lead. The United States and Great Britain have labored hard to help make the United Nations what it is supposed to be - an effective instrument of our collective security. In recent months, we've sought and gained three additional resolutions on Iraq - Resolutions 1441, 1483 and 1511 - precisely because the global danger of terror demands a global response. The United Nations has no more compelling advocate than your Prime Minister, who at every turn has championed its ideals and appealed to its authority. He understands, as well, that the credibility of the U.N. depends on a willingness to keep its word and to act when action is required."
[emphasis added]

Maureen Dowd must have read that speech. After all, it was given just yesterday and constitutes a key part of Bush's visit. (You know, if she's writing about Bush's trip--it would be a good idea to read the speech, no?)

So how does that square with her anti-Bush screed that contends that Dubya "never met an international institution he did not try to wreck"?

Oh, and take a look at this document to see what the U.S.' real policy vis-a-vis multilateral diplomacy is.

Listen, she could say the speech is merely disingenuous fodder for the Euro masses and go on with shrill polemics. But on the day after a major speech by Bush on the importance of bolstering international institutions--the very fora Dowd says Dubya is so intent on wrecking--you would think she might write about this with more caution.

Perhaps she might even be chastened into employing a modicum of sober, intelligent analysis, no?

Nah. Methinks she's purposefully lying again--or, at best, being sophomorically hyperbolic. Sadly routine and expected during the Raines era--but, and I really believe this, increasingly a true embarassment for Keller.

Someone should compile all these factually incorrect whoppers by Dowd--maybe packaging all the distortions into some gory aggregate might help get someone's attention at the Times.

Oh, and don't miss Tom Friedman today either:

"Then I pick up The Independent to read in the taxi and I see that London's left-wing mayor, Ken Livingstone, has denounced President Bush as "the greatest threat to life on this planet that we've most probably ever seen." Then I check out The Guardian, which carried open letters to the president, one of which is from the famous playwright Harold Pinter, who says: "Dear President Bush, I'm sure you'll be having a nice little tea party with your fellow war criminal, Tony Blair. Please wash the cucumber sandwiches down with a glass of blood."

No, Dorothy, we're definitely not in Kansas anymore.

We're in the U.K., our closest ally in the Iraq war a country where Mr. Bush still has many supporters, but also a legion of detractors. But if this is how some of our best friends are talking, imagine how difficult it is going to be to win over America's more ambivalent allies to widen support for the rebuilding of Iraq."
[emphasis added]

Some of our "best friends"! Ken Livingstone, Harold Pinter, the Independent? That's a laugh, isn't it?

Posted by Gregory at November 20, 2003 01:35 PM
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