Opinion: Op-Eds

About that bizarre Andrew Rosenthal Benghazi editorial

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Op-Eds,Hillary Clinton,2016 Elections,Darrell Issa,Benghazi,State Department,The New York Times

While most of the mainstream media understandably turned a blind eye to an odd meltdown from the editorial page editor of the paper which gives many of them their daily marching orders, the rest of us should take note.

Andrew Rosenthal of the New York Times closed out 2013 by writing a truly angry, bizarre, and quite telling editorial for his paper.

In his public temper tantrum -- the editorial titled “Republicans React to Benghazi News” -- Rosenthal showed his true colors in hitting the GOP for daring to respond to a highly-suspect front page story in the Times.

The story asserted that al Qaeda had no involvement in the Benghazi terrorist attack, which killed four heroic Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens.

Rosenthal opened his diatribe against the GOP by saying: “The article The Times published on Benghazi this weekend infuriated many Republicans, who ran screaming to television studios.”

Rosenthal next said: “Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, who has made a special crusade out of the attack on the American diplomatic and intelligence compound in Benghazi ...”

Excuse me, but all credit to Issa as the Obama White House, the State Department, and much of the media worked nonstop to stonewall and sweep the details of that attack on Sept. 11, 2012, under the rug.

Next, Rosenthal summed up what he believed is the real reason Republicans are upset at his newspaper:

“For anyone wondering why it's so important to Republicans that Al Qaeda orchestrated the attack…the answer is simple. The Republicans hope to tarnish Democratic candidates by making it seem as though Mr. Obama doesn't take Al Qaeda seriously. They also want to throw mud at former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who they fear will run for president in 2016.”

Well, Rosenthal conveniently left out a couple of important facts. First, aside from “partisan” Republicans, a number of Democrats and current and former members of the intelligence community find fault with the Times story parroting the Obama White House talking points on Benghazi.

Second, Rosenthal fails to acknowledge that maybe some Republicans – who he seems to view as the enemy – simply want to get to the truth of the matter.

Rosenthal closed by saying: “Which brings us to one particularly hilarious theme in the response to the Times investigation ... The Times was 'already laying the groundwork' for a Clinton campaign. ... Since I will have more to say about which candidate we will endorse in 2016 than any other editor at the Times, let me be clear: We have not chosen Mrs. Clinton. We have not chosen anyone.”

I can only assume Rosenthal offered up “We have not chosen anyone” as a bit of comic relief. While they may not have “chosen anyone” yet, even the most biased and liberal supporter of the Times will admit that whoever the paper does endorse for 2016 will only come from the Democratic Party.

Like Obama, whom he often defends, Rosenthal was given much in life. At a very early age, Obama was inserted into the protective and forgiving bubble of political correctness, while Rosenthal was inserted into the bubble of nepotism, wealth, and privilege. Good for them both.

While, as one who grew up in poverty and was often homeless as child, I may not understand these gifts of political correctness or family wealth and title, I do believe those who attain positions of power in part because of those gifts should at least be honest with themselves as to how they got there and try to exercise such gifted power in a fair manner.

The Times was once the best newspaper in the country. Now it comes across as a high school gossip-rag with nerds trying to settle scores with the school jocks or bullies. Pity.

Douglas MacKinnon is former White House and Pentagon official and author of the memoir “Rolling Pennies In The Dark.â€ï¿½ (Simon & Schuster, 2012)

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