Hugh: Media Bias In The Silences

Hugh Hewitt has a new column out for the Weekly Standard on media bias. His thoughts have has special resonance today as we see the major American media outlets put the Cone of Silence over Eason’s Fables, which plays a part in Hugh’s column. Hugh reminds us that bias not only exists in what’s reported, but also in what isn’t:

Even though attention will turn today to the president’s speech to the exclusion of almost everything else, let me underline two recent media events which deserve more scrutiny than they have thus far received.
The first is the genuinely scandalous assertion by CNN’s Eason Jordan, made at the World Economic Forum, that the United States military has targeted and killed a dozen journalists. The account of Jordan’s remarks -including his backpedaling and the crowd’s reactions–is available at ForumBlog. Thus far no major media outlet has demanded an accounting of Jordan, but the idea that a major figure from American media traffics
in such outlandish and outrageous slanders on the American military deserves attention and criticism, not indifference. It is no wonder that anti-American propaganda gains traction in the world when American news executives set fantasies such as this one in motion.

I’m glad Hugh mentions this, because if I inadvertently underplayed one part of my coverage yesterday on Jordan, it was his propensity to make these statements outside of the United States, and especially in fora that appear ready-made to accept anti-American allegations without substantiation. Why, one might ask, would the executive of an American news organization do this? Mainly because CNN does not compete well within the US any longer, and for good reason, as we now know. They are, however, tremendously influential internationally; they are America’s BBC, in more ways than market share. In order to maintain that position, Jordan has to cultivate an image of CNN as a hypercritical gadfly to American policies, especially those of American conservatives.
In other words, Eason Jordan sells out America to boost access for CNN worldwide, and that is a deliberate decision, as his repeated acts show. That should surprise no one who read Jordan’s own admission of the exact same thing in covering Saddam’s Iraq. Jordan told America that he deliberately suppressed stories of Saddam’s atrocities and published stories straight out of Baghdad Bob’s propaganda ministry in order to get pictures on TV from Baghdad.
Now, of course, the blogosphere has awoken to Jordan’s commercial interests in anti-American rhetoric, and CNN has been unmasked as a shill for leftists. CNN and its parent, Time Warner, has to decide whether they will endorse the Eason Jordan strategy and completely break faith with their American audiences — and perform a disservice to their global audiences, too — or dump Jordan and everyone who thinks like him and rebuild credibility back into their organization. It’s also up to use to make sure that they have to make that decision, and that we make clear what actions they’ve taken.
Read all of Hugh’s excellent column. Hugh will appear next Thursday at our Patriot Forum here in Minneapolis on February 10th to debate Peter Beinart. It promises to be a grand event, one of the classic debates you’ll regret missing. I believe tickets are on sale only until tomorrow, and for $69 you can get a ticket and a copy of Hugh’s terrific new book Blog. That’s a deal even Eason Jordan can’t pass up … in fact, Eason Jordan needs that deal more than all of us.

Poll Shows Bush Gained Converts With SOTU Speech

A CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll shows that President Bush gave one of his most effective speeches last night, picking up converts for his strategies on Social Security and Iraq and wound up with an 86% positive response, his highest in 3 years:

President Bush’s State of the Union address raised support for his policies on health care and Social Security among people who watched the speech, according to a CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll conducted Wednesday night.
The percentage of respondents who said the president’s proposals in those areas will help the country rose 15 points from when the same question was asked of the same people in the two days before the speech.
In the post-speech sample, 70 percent of respondents said Bush’s policies on health care were positive, while 66 percent approved of the president’s plan for Social Security.
Bush showed almost as much improvement on Iraq, with 78 percent of respondents saying U.S. policy there is heading in the right direction, a 12 percentage point increase over pre-speech polling. Overall, 77 percent of respondents said Bush is taking the country in the right direction after the speech compared to 67 percent beforehand.

The news in the poll will be the double-digit gains Bush made, but the pre-speech numbers were surprisingly substantial. Gallup apparently found that even before the SOTU speech, two-thirds of people now support his policies in Iraq and the same feel our country is heading in the right direction. On the “third rail” of American politics, he even had a majority supporting his reforms for Social Security, a remarkable number that only got better immediately afterwards.
Even if his gains recede as the afterglow of his speech fades, Bush shows an amazing mandate — and one that the press has apparently failed to report. The election in Iraq opened a lot of eyes around the world to the true nature of the Bush administration, and the scales may have fallen from the eyes of American voters as well. The Democrats had better wake up to the fact of Bush’s popularity and support, because if all they can do is catcall during important occasions like high-schoolers, the Party of No will rapidly become the Party No More.

My Rebuttal To Eason Jordan

Dear Mr. Jordan,
While I appreciate your response, I find it singularly inadequate. Just in terms of the one incident in Davos, your characterization of the debate fails to match with the two independent sources we have already seen. The first source, Forumblog, tells us that your forum was videotaped. Where is the transcript? Why don’t you simply produce that, or a videotape on CNN, with the portion of your statement? Surely CNN has the resources to track the tape down. The fact that your own news service fails to make that information available causes me to discount your characterization.
Unfortunately, even had I been inclined to give you the benefit of the doubt about Davos, you have a clear pattern of speaking abroad to audiences inclined towards anti-Western sentiment and making unsubstantiated charges against the US and Israel. You also need to explain your statements in the following venues:
November 2004 – You asserted that US military forces illegally detained 10 or more journalists and subjected them to torture. You said that you based this allegation on reports you’d seen which you believe to be true. Why didn’t CNN publish these reports? Where are they now? Which journalists were tortured, and by whom? It’s been almost four months since you made these charges, Mr. Jordan, and we have seen nothing from CNN.
October 2002 – You claimed that Israeli forces had a policy of targeting journalists, alleging that they had deliberately shot a CNN reporter as a result:

We’re not trying to favour one side over the other we’re not going to pull any punches in our reporting but the truth hurts sometimes and it hurts both sides but it’s a mistake to target the news media. We’ve had enormous frustrations in having access to occupied areas of the West Bank and Israeli forces on a number of occasions have shot at CNN personnel and in fact did shoot one CNN correspondent, he was badly wounded. The Israelis say they’re actually trying to restrict our access to these areas and they say it’s too dangerous for you to be there and my response to that is that it wouldn’t be nearly as dangerous if you didn’t shoot at us when we’re clearly labelled as CNN crews and journalists. And so this must stop, this targeting of the news media both literally and figuratively must come to an end immediately.

The only CNN journalist wounded in that region was Ben Wedeman, who got shot when he wandered into a crossfire. Your own producer, Bruce Conover, told CNN that no one could tell who shot him, as the bullets and mortars were flying in from all directions. Again, you provided no specifics, no names, and no substantiation whatsoever for the notion that the IDF deliberately targets journalists. Again, you made these statements in a foreign country where your remarks were likely to get less scrutiny in the US and approbation from the people who dislike America and Americans. And I note, once again, that CNN never reported on any special program to target journalists in combat zones, despite your allegations. We can only conclude from this that your rhetoric was immature, irresponsible, and completely unsubstantiated — again.
Until you can account for the Davos transcript so that we can all see the context of your remarks and explain your prevarications in the above two egregious examples of slander, then you have no credibility and neither does the news organization which takes its orders from you. Your position as the head of a major news organization and as a journalist requires you to be responsible for your words and actions. You have proven yourself to be inadequate to that task and disrespectful of the truth, and as such, you should resign immediately. As long as you remain in charge of CNN, nothing they report will have any credibility.
UPDATE: Welcome, Instapundit readers!

Eason Jordan Responds

Carol Platt Liebau has Eason Jordan’s official response, which she got by working through mutual acquaintances. Jordan maintains that he never said that the US deliberately targeted journalists:

“To be clear, I do not believe the U.S. military is trying to kill journalists in Iraq. I said so during the forum panel discussion. But, nonetheless, the U.S. military has killed several journalists in Iraq in cases of mistaken identity. The reason the word “targeted” came up at all is because I was responding to a comment by Congressman Franks, who said he believed the 63 journalists killed in Iraq were the victims of “collateral damage.” Since three of my CNN colleagues and many other journalists have been killed on purpose in Iraq, I disputed the “collateral damage” statement, saying, unfortunately, many journalists — not all — killed in Iraq were indeed targeted. When someone aims a gun at someone and pulls the trigger and then learns later the person fired at was actually a journalist, an apology is appropriate and is accepted, and I believe those apologies to be genuine. But such a
killing is a tragic case of mistaken identity, not a case of “collateral damage.” That is the distinction I was trying to make even if I did not make it clearly at the time. Further, I have worked closely with the U.S. military for months in an effort to achieve a mutual goal: keeping journalists in Iraq safe and alive.”

I’ll post my response separately, but big thanks to Carol Platt Liebau for getting Eason Jordan to finally comment personally and directly.
Addendum: Does anyone else notice that Carol scooped CNN on this development?

Live Blogging The SOTU Speech Tonight

I will be live-blogging the State of the Union speech tonight, on this post. It starts at 8 pm CT, and since I have TiVo, I may use it to scroll back when necessary to capture what was said.
7:59 CT – The escort committees have been selected and have gone off to fetch the President. I’m settling in for the duration. I expect a good speech, but nothing terribly surprising or even particularly memorable. The best parts will have to do with the Iraqi elections, to be sure. Watch for the Ted Kennedy close-up on that one…
8:02 – Don’t forget that Hugh Hewitt will appear on Joe Scarborough at 11 pm CT to discuss the SOTU speech. I expect him to bring up Eason’s Fables …
8:09 – We share it with a “free and sovereign Iraq.” Nice start.
8:13 – After the reference to Iraq, Bush went directly into domestic issues. Interesting choice. The more visionary parts of his speech will be on foreign affairs, and I wonder if he doesn’t want to finish strong instead of start strong like he did the last time out …
8:17 – After the usual handouts that get the pork rolling, Bush memtions tort reform and health care adjacent. He’s just delivered the message to the Democrats — if you want to talk health care, it comes with tort reform attached. Get used to it or shut up.
8:20 – Four years of debate is enough — except for Harry Reid, of course …
8:21 – Social Security: the first shoe to drop. “Do not let anyone mislead you” — that’s a pretty contentious message. I guess Bush still won’t back down from a fight. Bush gives a good explanation why Social Security has a problem, using the workers-to-beneficiary ration. The Democrats don’t like the numbers Bush uses, and decide to rudely catcall during the speech. That should tell you all you need to know about the immaturity of the opposition…
8:28 – Thanks, Glenn, for the Instapundit link …
8:29 – “The money in the account is yours, and the government can never take it away.” I’m on board.
8:30 – Good for the President — he pointed out that federal employees already have privatization.
8:31 – He spent ten minutes, by my watch, on Social Security. He spent thirty seconds on the Federal Marriage Amendment. Anyone need an explanation? He’s spending more time on the protection of human life. I like that set of priorities.
8:34 – I think that more of the real George Bush comes out in tonight’s speech. He seems comfortable, relaxed, and in charge. He’s allowed himself to smile in reaction to the crowd. He’s not speaking oratorically for the most part; he’s speaking as if he was addressing a small gathering. I like this speech more than I thought I would.
8:39 – OK, here’s the part I thought would come first — the war on terror. Bush obviously understands his strength will come from this part of the speech, and decided to hold it off to the end.
8:41 – A good list of positive actions in the war from the Bush administration. The vision of his second term comes out again — the Force of Human Freedom. Ending tyranny is the ultimate goal.
8:44 – Bush gave a great oration on the different aims of the US and the terrorists. Any moral relativists listening will understand that his words were meant for them.
8:46 – I’m considerably less sanguine about the prospects of peace between Israel and Palestine than the President. I wish Condi Rice the best of luck, because from what I’ve seen from their election, I don’t think Abbas has the juice to cut a deal that will stick.
8:47 – Calling out Syria for its support of terrorism, first on the list of tyrant nations and terror enablers. Iran comes second, and he defers to Europe in taking the lead in disarmament, but he speaks directly to the Iranian people assuring them of our support. I’d say that shows the direction that the second term will take. Allow Europe to handle Iran for now, while we take on Syria directly.
8:50 – A nice moment; several members of Congress held up ink-stained fingers in support of the Iraqi people’s bravery in casting their vote. Bush emphatically notes that the Iraqis have “earned the respect of us all,” a smackdown to those who claim that the elections were a joke. It wasn’t a joke to the people who braved the bombs and bullets to cast their votes.
8:54 – He’s really rolling here. He looks passionate and determined while delivering this section of the speech. “Tell America not to abandon us.” A good statement on Iraq: “Freedom in Iraq will make America safer for generations to come.” He tells Congress that the troops will come home when we achieve the results we set out to get, not on some artificial timetable or based on Harry Reid’s exit strategies.
8:58 – Sgt. Bill Norwood’s parents get hugs and handshakes, and it’s not easy to type through this …
9:01 – A terrific and inspiring finish to one of George Bush’s best policy speeches. It doesn’t have the soaring vision of his inaugural, but — it’s not an inauguration, when one expects that. This speech is part road map, part halftime pep speech. He’s much improved over last year, and I think he gets better every year he’s in office. He may never be considered a great orator (for good reason), but he delivers some of the best political speeches since Reagan.
In this case, he kept the thread of freedom going throughout the entire hour, including the domestic section. Freedom will be his great theme, just as the New Deal was FDR’s or the Great Society was LBJ’s. W’s will be the Force of Human Freedom.
Good speech, probably a great SOTU speech. What were your thoughts?
UPDATE: Ankle-Biting Pundits is (are?) live-blogging the Democratic response. I’ll post my thoughts at the end, but I don’t plan on live-blogging it, as from what I’ve heard in the first few minutes from Harry Reid, it sounds like the same generic blather we heard during the presidential campaign. I do note, however, that Reid uses the movie “Groundhog Day” while engaging in the same thing he decries.
UPDATE II: I thought that Reid managed at least to project some warmth, even if he did little but mouth platitudes until the end of his speech. Pelosi was, as always, a disaster. She looks as though she just came from an audition for Scream IV, and she speaks as though she wants to scold a recalcitrant class of third-graders. She spoke with more specifics than Reid, and manages to get almost everything wrong. Worst of all, she calls for a “much smaller” American presence in ten months, meaning she’s signed onto the Kennedy bug-out plan.
Tom DeLay had a pretty good analysis. He called them the Party of No — no ideas, no agenda, nothing but a No for anything the GOP proposes.
Ken Salazar accuses Bush of being “divisive” — haven’t the Democrats figured out that in a free society, people are allowed to disagree? He stabs Reid in the back, however, by telling Fox News that he isn’t on board for a filibuster at this point on Social Security, despite Reid’s boasting earlier. What a great wrap-up of Reid’s leadership skills; he’s proven a number of times now that he can’t control his caucus. And Salazar’s a first-termer!

Another Example Of Eason’s Fables

In yet another example of how Eason Jordan tosses around accusations without much supporting evidence — or any at all — the Guardian (UK) covering the News Xchange Forum this past November reports on accusations of the torture of journalists by American forces (hat tip – Peter Cook):

Eason Jordan, chief news executive at CNN, said there had been only a “limited amount of progress”, despite repeated meetings between news organisations and the US authorities.
“Actions speak louder than words. The reality is that at least 10 journalists have been killed by the US military, and according to reports I believe to be true journalists have been arrested and tortured by US forces,” Mr Jordan told an audience of news executives at the News Xchange conference in Portugal.

Once again, we go to CNN’s own archives to find any report that mentions Jordan and the torture of reporters by any military whatsoever … and find nothing. Where are those reports which Eason Jordan believes to be true? Why didn’t CNN cover such a blockbuster story? Jordan appears to have a big mouth and a strong desire to tell people stories — let’s call them Eason’s Fables — that get him attention from all the right people.
If you have had enough of Eason Jordan, don’t tell CNN. Go to Time Warner and let them know.
UPDATE: Bumping this to the top — this is a solid corroboration of Jordan’s inherent bias and antagonism towards the American military.
UPDATE II: Charles at Little Green Footballs notes that Jordan was not the only CNN exec to make accusations of targeting at this conference:

And please note: *this is not limited to Eason Jordan.* At the same News Xchange conference in Portugal, -another- CNN executive, Chris Cramer, told an audience that journalists were being “deliberately targeted for seeking out the truth.”

Good catch — I missed that one.

CNN Just Discovered Captain’s Quarters

Hey, folks, guess what I just received in my e-mail?

Many blogs have taken Mr. Jordan’s remarks out of context. Eason Jordan does not believe the U.S. military is trying to kill journalists. Mr. Jordan simply pointed out the facts: While the majority of journalists killed in Iraq have been slain at the hands of insurgents, the Pentagon has also noted that the U.S. military on occasion has killed people who turned out to be journalists. The Pentagon has apologized for those actions.
Mr. Jordan was responding to an assertion by Cong. Frank that all 63 journalist victims had been the result of “collateral damage.”

I posted this earlier, as TKS had received it after sending CNN a complaint by e-mail. However, I never did send CNN an e-mail — and this message was e-mailed to me specifically, with my address in the To: field.
Do you think someone at CNN might be a tad worried?
UPDATE 6:11 PM CT: Still no evidence of any response at CNN’s website.
UPDATE II: I’ll be on Hugh Hewitt around 6:45 PM CT to discuss the story.

Corroboration For Eason’s Fables In Davos

Rebecca MacKinnon, a TV reporter as well as a blogger, somewhat reluctantly confirms the account given in Forumblog about Eason Jordan’s remarks in Davos last week (hat tip TKS). MacKinnon writes in her blog, RConversations:

I was in the room and Rony’s account is consistent with what I heard. I was also contributing to the Forumblog, but to be honest, Jordan happens to be my former boss who promoted me and defended me in some rather sticky situations after my reporting angered the Chinese government. As CNN’s “senior statesman” over the years, Eason has done some things I agreed with and other things I wondered about. But at least when it came to China, he was no apologist and defended my reports on human rights abuses and political dissent.

Actually, I find Ms. MacKinnon’s loyalties to both the truth and her former boss admirable. It’s obvious that she thought carefully before posting this corroboration of Forumblog’s account.
Now CNN has more explaining to do. After sending out that CYA response, the obvious whitewash attempt instead shows the cable network circling the wagons, a la Rather and the gang at Black Rock last September. Eason Jordan wants to bet the future of CNN on outlasting his critics with smokescreens and arguments about context. Obviously, he didn’t pay much attention to the Memogate fiasco; I wonder if Time Warner will make the same mistake Viacom did.
NOTE: LaShawn Barber is tracking the blog swarm, with lots of links.

CNN Reporter Targeted By Israelis? Hardly!

In October 2002, Eason Jordan claimed that the Israeli Defensive Forces had shot a CNN reporter as part of a deliberate strategy of targeting journalists covering the war in the West Bank and Gaza Strip (see post below). I did a little searching on Nexis again, confident that had CNN reporters taken fire in the line of duty, CNN would report it. I conducted a search for ‘CNN reporter shot’ (non-exclusive), and I got only five hits, all of which reported the same incident, which occurred on October 31, 2000.
According to CNN’s own coverage of the incident and their own eyewitness to the event, Eason Jordan lied about it during the October 2002 conference:

DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: Violence in the Middle East has been increasing over the past few days. The death toll is rising.
At least, 151 people have been killed in the clashes, and today the CNN family was directly hit. Correspondent Ben Wedeman was shot just hours ago as he was covering the clashes between Palestinians and Israelis.
Ben is being treated at a hospital in Gaza City. His producer, Bruce Conover, joins us by phone now from Shifa (ph) Hospital.
Bruce, thanks for joining us.
BRUCE CONOVER, CNN PRODUCER: Hi, Daryn. Well, Ben’s fine. He’s conscious. He’s making jokes. So we’re feeling a lot better about his condition right now.
KAGAN: So he’s going to be OK.
CONOVER: He’s going to be OK, yes.
KAGAN: Can you tell us what happened?
CONOVER: He — we had Ben and a cameraman, Dave Albritten (ph), coming in as a new team. They’ve been here a few times before. But obviously, you need to bring people up to speed on the locations, where these clashes have been taking place.
So we decided to go to a place that is called the Karni Junction. It’s basically a commercial trade center across the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip, where literally trucks with Israeli license plates unload into trucks with Palestinian plates so that there are no vehicles crossing the border.
That location was — became a point of fairly nasty clashes two days ago when there were heavy machine guns in use. The Israeli army said that they were fired upon from Palestinian positions. During the period that we were there, we did not hear any return fire until the very last moment.
But today, it turned violent very quickly. We got there, and literally, a huge firefight broke out. We were — there were four of us there. We were literally pinned to the ground a minute and a half after getting out of the car. And we were pinned down — Ben and cameraman Mohammed (ph) were a little bit ahead. They were in a grove of olive trees, and we saw an Israeli tank shelling and moving the shells — walking the shells toward the olive grove. It became very clear that it was critical that they get out of there. Mohammed yelled to Ben to get out. They were in the process of trying to move when Ben was hit by something. We’re still not sure exactly what.
But he was hit. He went down. Mohammed got out of there. Ben was lying on the ground. And in sort of an ironic testimonial to high technology, we, completely pinned down, used our cell phones to call Ben to find out whether he was hit, and in fact, he said, yes, I’m hit, at which point there were several ambulances that were — had been called by bystanders to the area.
But it was a very nasty firefight, with shelling, probably an exchange of gunfire. It’s hard to tell from which side, but there was definitely a lot of stuff coming across. And to make a long story a little bit shorter, it came out of nowhere.
This location, we’ve been there the day before, absolutely calm, or I should say relatively calm, the normal clashes: Israeli forces using rubber bullets, Palestinians throwing rocks. That’s sort of encompassing the norm.

So what happened? CNN’s reporter went to an area where clashes were known to occur; a reasonable action for a reporter to take. Usually the clashes didn’t amount to anything particularly intense. On this occasion, however, a full-scale battle with real bullets erupted, and Wedeman got caught in the crossfire. No one knows who shot him — after all, CNN didn’t follow up the report according to Nexis — and his bullet was just as likely to have come from a Palestinian gun as an IDF gun. More to the point, no one “targeted” Wedeman for assassination. Someone may have mistaken him as a combatant, but it’s much more likely that he simply got stuck in the wrong place in a battlefield.
With reporting like this coming from the chief of CNN, how can we trust anything his underlings tell us?
UPDATE: Glenn corrected my English in the intro — and I used to be a technical writer/editor whose job it was to catch that stuff. Dang — writing on a lunch break will do that to a guy! But if I get to hear from Glenn, it’s worth it.

Jordan: Not Just The Americans

Eason Jordan appears to like spreading the slander around when it comes to accusations of assassination attempts by Western military forces. CQ reader and blogger Peter Cook found this forum transcript from News Xchange 2002, where Jordan makes the same accusations — with the same lack of specifics — against the Israelis:

NG: Eason, why do you think you’ve been targeted specifically, I mean there are Israeli bumper stickers that say ‘CNN lies’, the Israeli communications minister talked about CNN as being ‘evil, biased and unbalanced’ you’ll be familiar with all these quotes?
EJ: Absolutely, well the Israeli government is making a mistake if it considers CNN the enemy, CNN is just trying to tell the story of Israel, the story of Palestinian areas in a straightforward way. We’re not trying to favour one side over the other we’re not going to pull any punches in our reporting but the truth hurts sometimes and it hurts both sides but it’s a mistake to target the news media. We’ve had enormous frustrations in having access to occupied areas of the West Bank and Israeli forces on a number of occasions have shot at CNN personnel and in fact did shoot one CNN correspondent, he was badly wounded. The Israelis say they’re actually trying to restrict our access to these areas and they say it’s too dangerous for you to be there and my response to that is that it wouldn’t be nearly as dangerous if you didn’t shoot at us when we’re clearly labelled as CNN crews and journalists. And so this must stop, this targeting of the news media both literally and figuratively must come to an end immediately.

Who got shot? When and where did this happen? Jordan doesn’t say. Again, if CNN has evidence that the Israelis target journalists for assassination, why haven’t they reported the story? And if they don’t have any proof of Jordan’s allegations, why does he toss them around so carelessly? Either Jordan is a raging paranoid or has political reasons for his allegations. Given his past, I’d lean more towards the latter.
Having a man at the top of a major news organization engaging in this kind of conduct destroys the credibility of the entire organization. Perhaps we in the blogosphere have been slow to check Eason Jordan, but we’re conscious of the problem now and we will continue to push this story as long as the mainstream news media continues to ignore it. If Jordan has proof of these multiple accusations, let’s see it. If not, Time Warner should fire him immediately.
UPDATE: CNN has released a statement via e-mail to those who have written in (hat tip: TKS):

Many blogs have taken Mr. Jordan’s remarks out of context. Eason Jordan does not believe the U.S. military is trying to kill journalists. Mr. Jordan simply pointed out the facts: While the majority of journalists killed in Iraq have been slain at the hands of insurgents, the Pentagon has also noted that the U.S. military on occasion has killed people who turned out to be journalists. The Pentagon has apologized for those actions.
Mr. Jordan was responding to an assertion by Cong. Frank that all 63 journalist victims had been the result of “collateral damage.”

First off, it’s interesting to note that CNN responded to blogs here, not just readers or viewers. But it hardly answers the question of what actually was said. It sounds like Jordan disagreed with the notion that all 63 journalists were killed as a result of collateral damage. So what did Jordan claim as the cause?
Better yet, why did Eason Jordan accuse the Israelis of the exact same thing — targeted assassinations — without providing any specifics or evidence? This release means nothing except a quick attempt to avoid a blogswarm. Nice try, but no cigar, pals.